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Opinion: Why Santorum would be the worst thing for the U.S.

by at March 8th, 2012 11:48 AM

Senator Rick Santorum’s recent surge in the GOP polls has made me realize that he could actually win the Rebublican nomination. His legitimacy is no longer in the realm of “what-ifs” and the notion of him running our country is no longer just a nightmare. 

It’s now becoming a living nightmare.
  
There are many things to hate about Rick Santorum, such as his fight against gay rights, his view on contraception, and his racist idea of welfare. But Rick Santorum’s past remarks on how he sees the world and how he would treat countries whose people have beliefs different to his scare me the most.

Rick Santorum once said the Christian Crusades were justified and that anyone who thinks otherwise is part of the American left.  “The idea that the Crusades and the fight of Christendom against Islam is somehow an aggression on our part is absolutely anti-historical,” said Santorum in 2011 to an audience in South Carolina, before he began in presidential campaign.  

The Crusades, by the way, were the Christian massacres of hundreds of thousands of Muslims in the eleventh century. The statement that it was not an act of aggression and that thinking otherwise is anti-historical, is akin to a German politician saying the Holocaust was not violent and anyone who disagrees is part of the Jewish spin.

This statement is so absurd that he should be booed and laughed out of every political gathering.  It doesn’t only reflect a fundamental ignorance to reality and the history that composes it, but it’s a scary testament to how blinding his religion is to him and how he feels that literally anything is justified if he feels “his” God is behind him. 

And the scary thing is his language still reflects this kind of violent religious zeal.

Santorum has said numerous times that he would not hesitate to invade Iran if they did not comply to any of his commands. He consistently disregards and mischaracterizes all foreign animosity as “hating us for our freedoms and wealth,” and refuses to acknowledge when the U.S. goes too far in foreign intervention (such as U.S. drone bombings that take civilian lives). This dehumanization of all people different from a political views, nationality, or religion is an incredibly scary and dangerous characteristic for anyone of political authority and especially, above all else, a president to possess. 

Santorum’s view of the world is similar, though far more extreme and warped, to President Bush’s during his presidency. President Bush broke the world down into two clearly defined spheres of people: good vs. evil. Those in America or on our side were automatically good, and anything we did was justified because we were inherently right and guided by God. Conversely, those opposing us were inherently evil and anything they did was wrong by nature. The real world is not like that. There is gray area. Simply because someone is different does not make them “evil”, the U.S. is guilty of many of the same crimes we accuse other nations of, and a small minority of radicals should not be used to characterize an entire religion or culture. 

This is the ignorant, misguided mindset that leads the U.S into preemptive wars based on faulty evidence which inevitably ends in thousands of innocent deaths and global animosity. Sound like a recent war? The last thing the U.S. needs is another Iraq War with a dumber, crazier, and far scarier commander and chief leading the charge. Santorum is licking his lips to invade Iran and fulfill his extremist religious agenda, despite U.S. Defense Secretary Leon Pannetta saying numerous times Iran is not currently pursuing nuclear weapons. 

To put it bluntly, Rick Santorum would attempt to turn the U.S. into a theocracy of militaristic authority and global rule. He would look to strip the constitution of all limitation on his religious zeal, and essentially regress the nation’s progress on separation of church and state a few hundred years.

If you think this is hyperbole, look up what the man has said. You might be surprised.  

This column is the sole opinion of the author. It does not necessarily represent the opinions of the RedEye staff, duPont Manual High School, its students, faculty or administration.




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One Response to Opinion: Why Santorum would be the worst thing for the U.S.

  1. bobthechef

    March 10, 2012 at 17:54:18 pm

    Whoa, guy. Let’s not be hasty. I’ve been a consistent Democrat voter for the last 20 years of my life, and while I’m not a fan of Santorum and his style, it’s not wrong to say that the Crusades as colloquially understood are a far cry from what they actually were (the same applies to the Spanish Inquisition, the Galileo Affair and other stock arguments against the Catholic Church). Data are taken out of context (in truth, the Inquisition was in fact the fairest legal structure in Europe at the time). The truth of the matter is that the Crusades have a historical context as a response to Muslim expansion into Christian lands. This is basic historic fact. Modern day Israel and Turkey, for instance, were inhabited by Christians before Muslim expansion. The Catholic Church certainly was not advocating a conversion campaign: that would assume the Holy Land was Muslim before it was Christian which is patent nonsense. If you read actual Church documents, you will see no such intent expressed. That some crusading soldiers came to the Holy Land to establish their own kingdoms or further their own political goals is a matter altogether separate. Every human endeavor is vulnerable to careerists and crooks. And if you doubt that Muslim expansion every occurred, well I’m sorry to say you’re doubly making a fool of yourself. The Ottoman Empire consistently make incursions into Europe, going at far as Vienna in the 17th century. The Balkans were in large part incorporated into the Empire.

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