I'm writing this post as a response to this video my brother Jake sent to me. He is surprisingly a big fan of John Stewart's Daily Show. Despite some crass humor, I think you will get the message quite quickly.
After watching the clip, read on.
The so-called 9/11 mosque has, in my opinion, finally turned on a lightbulb inside the heads of many "seventy to eighty percenters," as Stewart puts it, as to the radical nature of political activism in the past 10 years. Sanity is being bullied over by angered mobs, due to real national calamities (like the BP oil spill) as well as really exaggerated national "issues" (such as the mosque). The interesting thing about radicalism throughout history is that it has ALWAYS been the voice to be heard most of the time, due to its nature. The very definition of radicalism requires activism, protest, and outcry. The question, then, that has plagued moderates through history is How Can We Be Heard Above All This Racket?
Taking another lesson from history (which I hope will catch on), I find some solace in the fact that moderates usually win out. After all, everyone eventually prefers a calming of the waters instead of a continuation of the storm. However, this may not always be the case. Radicalism in may forms has led to such devastation and horror as Bartholomew's Day, Robespierre's Guillotione, and the Battle of Stalingrad. It seems to me that a dangerous result of unchecked radicalism is atrocious human behavior.
Furthermore, as we realize that the catalysts of radicalism include calamities and natural tragedies, as well as religious issues, we realize from the scriptures that the amount of reactant in this chemical formula will only increase. Radicals will have more to be radical about. So I ask again: how can we stem the tide?
To me, the only answer is moderate activism. And no, those two words do not form an oxymoron. Personally, I have never felt it necessary to get involved in the political climate. I guess I never have seen the need to do so, nor have I felt like any of my actions would result in any visible consequence.
There must be a way, though.