The Left’s Abuse and Misuse of Anecdotes

Following a school’s hysterical overreaction to a Muslim boy’s homemade clock,  #IStandWithAhmed is now all the rage. The distressing story of a talented and beleaguered student being detained by cops for the simple crime of being Muslim and brown has galvanized the nation’s liberal talking heads; it has likewise laid bare the tired tactics of leftist activists.

Let me just say that I consider Middle America’s Muslim obsession rather moronic, and I likewise think that Ahmed Mohamed was treated unfairly. However, it’s utterly ridiculous the way the left has been lionizing Ahmed; it’s even more nauseating that they’ve used this misunderstanding as an opportunity to depict white Americans as people seething with intolerance and hatred. The fact that Ahmed and his family have managed to enjoy a prosperous life in the US – with this incident being their worst ordeal – indicates that Muslims are welcomed and tolerated to a degree that most visible minorities around the world aren’t. I won’t even bother linking to an article about anti-Muslim violence in India.

What the case of Ahmed does highlight is the manner in which leftists employ anecdotal evidence to strengthen their talking points. While they have a natural aversion to empiricism, they’re always happy to shove the latest tragedy in our faces in order to browbeat people into reflexively embracing their agenda. One only has to observe the way they’ve exploited the tragic death of Aylan Kurdi in order to shame Europeans for not welcoming further influxes of Syrian refugees.

But just like the various creatures in Animal Farm, some sob stories and anecdotes are more equal than others. Whenever leftists want to promote open borders, they either tout the benefits of immigration by highlighting certain high-achieving immigrants – implying that the West may lose out on the next Thomas Edison – or they harrow us with sad tales about separated families and dead children (and we must always think of the children).

However, not all immigrants are tragic victims of white hostility and neglect; some in fact are the architects of myriad tragedies. Whether it’s Pakistani sex grooming gangs in Britain, terrorists such as the Tsarnaevs, or various high-profile murders committed by illegal immigrants in the US, one could just as easily condemn open borders by positing that unfettered immigration will result in more deaths of women like Kate Steinle – or the next major bombing.

As for me, I refrain from using anecdotes to critique open borders precisely because I wish to avoid this trap. I don’t attack mass immigration because of a single tragic murder committed by an illegal immigrant; I deride open borders because it’s a profoundly idiotic position. I endorse immigration restriction because I wish to see the white West survive for at least a few more generations. I abhor internationalism and its lack of respect for sovereignty.

However, at the same time, I recognize that for most people on both sides, immigration has less to do with facts and more to do with the emotions it engenders. If the left wishes to continue generating kneejerk reactions through distressing stories about children being separated from their families, then the right can counter with infuriating tales about pretty young white womens’ lives being cut short by illegal immigrants – illegal immigrants who were previously indulged by “sanctuary cities.”

(I’m not trying to white knight, but let’s face it: for practical purposes, the deaths of pretty young women will garner a lot more attention and outrage)

Two can play this game.

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This entry was posted in Cultural Marxism, Hispanics, Immigration, Islam, Race, Racism and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

8 Responses to The Left’s Abuse and Misuse of Anecdotes

  1. Janus says:

    The anecdotal rhetoric tactic is used because it works.

    People who are inclined to react emotionally, who have built their entire worldviews from their emotional reactions, best respond to personal anecdotes. It’s easier for them to identify with such stories, with their good guys and their bad guys. And they can be counted on to dig no further than what they hear.

    Logical arguments are wasted on emotional thinkers, be they on the political left or the right. Their eyes will glaze over in seconds.

    But thanks, Bay Area Guy, for avoiding such arguments here and for sticking to the more reasonable approach.

    • Bay Area Guy says:

      But thanks, Bay Area Guy, for avoiding such arguments here and for sticking to the more reasonable approach.

      Why thank you, Janus!

      The reason why I adopt such an approach is because I believe that one shouldn’t need emotional anecdotes to critique open borders; the idiocy of mass immigration should be blatantly obvious.

      But we live in idiotic times.

  2. Christopher says:

    So when Indian Muslims are the victim of violence in India they are Msulims but when Pakistani Muslims are offenders of horrific violence in the UK they are just called Pakistani and there’s no mention of the Islamic element?

    I generally agree with this website but when it comes to Islam you guys are weak.

    • Dota says:

      So when Indian Muslims are the victim of violence in India they are Msulims

      That is because they are targeted specifically due to their religion. Non practicing Muslims are just as likely to be killed by Hindutva savages as practicing Muslims. Culturally, Hindus and Indian Muslims are the same. Same values, same amoral worldview, and last but not least: same genetics.

      but when Pakistani Muslims are offenders of horrific violence in the UK they are just called Pakistani and there’s no mention of the Islamic element?

      That’s because their barbarism is mostly a cultural phenomenon and not a religions one. I haven’t heard of Iranians or Indonesians behaving in such an ugly manner when they move to the West. Indonesians who moved to Holland in the 50s and 60s are mostly integrated and frequently intermarry with native Dutch women. I’m not saying the West should import them en masse just because they behave better than Pakistanis (practically everybody does, except the Arabs) but culture and race always trump religion.

    • Bay Area Guy says:

      I generally agree with this website but when it comes to Islam you guys are weak.

      As I’ve argued on many occasions, focusing on Islam distracts us from real issues. In fact, I would even assert that attacking Islam is a manifestation of weakness because it demonstrates a reluctance to tackle race.

      When whites bash Muslims, what they’re really doing is expressing frustration with ongoing demographic displacement. I would rather focus on that than waste time perusing the Quran for incriminating verses.

  3. Gaawwwwd dang says:

    You guys are so stupid. Getting displaced by Muslims? Muslims are people just like you. There is no displacement. I don’t like it when neighbors move into my apartment complex because I like the quiet, but guess what? I deal with it. I don’t claim persecution, or claim that these neighbors are “displacing me”. I have a legal right to my home, and they have one to theirs. Muslims have a legal right to immigrate. Suck it up. Never have I seen a greater amount of idiots than when browsing at conservative forums.

    Don’t like Muslims? Then purchase your own property and live away from Muslims. Simple as that. The USA does not belong to any one person or group of people alone.

    • Dota says:

      The USA does not belong to any one person or group of people alone.

      Try going to India and China and telling people there that their nations don’t belong to any one ethnic group. I dare you.

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