Simi Valley Sophist

The Simi Valley Sophist ruminates on all manner of topics from the micro to the macro. SVS travels whatever path strikes his fancy. Encyclopedia Britannica: Sophist "Any of certain Greek lecturers, writers, and teachers in the 5th and 4th centuries BC, most of whom travelled about the Greek-speaking world giving instruction in a wide range of subjects in return ..."

Location: California, United States

Retired: 30years law enforcement-last 20 years Criminal Intelligence Detective.

Monday, June 05, 2006

Emotions and the Ticking Time Bomb

What gets to you? What stirs your emotions and makes you: laugh; cry; stimulates your empathy; or enrages you? Individual expression of emotions is culturally prescribed from the reserved to the expressive. Examples are numerous and cultural groups are stereotyped from stoic and reserved or cold-blooded to expressive and volatile or hot blooded.

Unrestrained emotion is a proximate cause of a large part of the world’s problems on both a micro and a macro level. That’s because if we allow our emotions to dictate behavior without a moderating influence of intellectual thought and cultural restraint, we may respond in inappropriate or, worse, a destructive manner. No one knows that better on the micro level than the police and the victims of domestic violence and physical child abuse. On the macro level, expressed emotion run rampant and tied to intolerance is fueling the Islamo-fascist movement.

In the Western cultures, someone saying something critical or unkind about a religious figure does not result in riots, assaults, death threats or assassinations. Not so in predominantly Islamic cultures. You need look no further than the fatwa against Selman Rushdie, the murder of Theo Van Gough, the riots over the Allah cartoons, or this riot over a TV spoof of Sheik Hassan Nasrallah.

BEIRUT, Lebanon— Thousands of Shiite Muslims, enraged by a TV comedy that mocked the leader of Hezbollah, took to the streets of southern Beirut last night, burning car tires and blocking roads…
In Afghanistan, mobs rioted after a traffic accident wherein a U.S. military truck crashed and caused a number of deaths to Afghan motorists.

Not all of the Islamic high level of emotional response is directed outward toward other cultures. Take a look at what Shiites do to themselves during an annual religious pilgrimage to Karbala, Iraq. Go here, here and here for photos.

Do you think that you understand the fundamental Islamic mind? Volatile language and behavior does not make for reasoned debate. So while the appeasement and accommodation crowd fiddles and waits for Rome to burn, realists are locking and loading.