Did you ever have two different news stories collide in your head, leaving both with dangling fenders, shattered headlights, and leaking radiator fluid? I did, just this week.
Exhibit A is the Korean pop singer who calls himself Psy. This is the chap who made that “Gangnam Style” video, which at the time of this writing has 932,421,123 YouTube views—an all-time record.
I liked “Gangnam Style.” It was fun and bouncy and full of pretty girls. My pleasure in looking at the girls was only slightly diminished when I read in the October 8 issue of The New Yorker that their good looks are in many if not most cases the result of heroic plastic surgery, for which “Korea is by far the world leader in procedures per capita….” Those pixie faces are quite atypical for the ethny. Ri Sol-Ju, First Lady of North Korea, displays a more traditionally Korean style of pretty, her face round and well-fleshed. The path from round to pixie is arduous indeed, if The New Yorker can be believed:
Women…have their cheekbones shaved down and undergo “double jaw surgery,” in which the upper and lower jawbones are cracked apart and repositioned, to give the whole skull a more tapered look.
Back to Psy. Having attained worldwide fame, he was naturally booked to perform at a lot of venues, including last weekend’s “Christmas in Washington,” an annual charity bash always attended by the POTUS and his family.
Three days before the show, we—the 900 million or so non-Koreans who had been happily jigging along to “Gangnam Style”—learned that in 2004 our hero had performed a song with outrageously anti-American lyrics to Korean audiences. “Kill the f***ing Yankees!” Psy had crooned. Then, for good measure:
Kill their daughters, mothers, daughters-in-law, and fathers!
Kill them all slowly and painfully!
Two years before that he had performed in a different anti-American protest show, smashing a model US tank onstage.
This kind of thing is catnip to opinion journalists. Should Psy’s invitation to the charity bash be pulled? (It wasn’t.) Should these revelations about anti-Americanism sour us on him? (They soured me.) Benny Avni in the New York Post took a mild approach, putting Psy’s transgressions at ages 22 and 24 down to youthful folly:
It’s a well-worn trajectory. To paraphrase an old cliché: If you don’t question America in your 20s, you’re heartless; if you still hate it in your 30s, you’re brainless.
Mmm, yes and no. Sure, a lot of us do dumb, reprehensible things in our youth. And sure, Psy expressed abject contrition. But he only did so after the news of those anti-American follies came out, three months into the worldwide fame of “Gangnam Style.” And really, “Kill the f***ing Yankees!”? Would that be the Yankees who took nearly 37,000 combat deaths to spare South Korea from the horrors of communism?
Exhibit B is Génération Identitaire, an organization of young nationalists in France. These are the people who occupied a mosque in Poitiers back in October. Poitiers is close to the battlefield where Charles Martel stopped the Muslim invasion of Europe in 732 AD.
Génération Identitaire has a video out, and it’s worth a look. They speak in French, but there are subtitles:
We are the generation of ethnic fracture, total failure of coexistence, and forced mixing of the races.
We are the generation doubly punished: condemned to pay into a social system so generous with strangers it becomes unsustainable for our own people.
We no longer believe that “Khader” [a generic Muslim] could ever be our brother, we have stopped believing in a “Global Village” and the “Family of Man.”
Our heritage is our land, our blood, our identity….
We are 25 percent unemployment, social debt, multicultural collapse, and an explosion of anti-white racism.
…and more in the same vein. I responded positively to this, seeing it as a glimmer of hope that I may perhaps have taken too gloomy a view in my September 6th Taki’s Mag column; that perhaps in France at least, not all white people are pussies. My feelings toward Génération Identitaire warmed even further when I saw the nonsense being written about them on leftist websites—gibberish about “hate,” “supremacy,” and the rest of the threadbare canting leftist vocabulary.
But then I started thinking about Exhibit A and Exhibit B together—always a hazardous procedure if you want to stay comfortable in your prejudices. If I can approve of Génération Identitaire wanting their country back, why am I mad at Psy for wanting his country back? We have 28,500 troops stationed there, and of course they occasionally misbehave, as troops will. And we have supported some unsavory dictators in South Korea across the decades.
Psy’s 2004 lyrics contain real hate for us, unlike anything Génération Identitaire expresses. You can discount some of that as just Korean-ness, though. They are a famously obstreperous people, prickly about their nationhood—”The Irish of Asia,” old Asia hands say. Not pussies.
If I’m open to Psy plea-bargaining down on the follies-of-youth clause (which I am), what of the Génération Identitaire people, some of whom look to be less than twenty years old? Might it be that their pride of identity, which I find admirable, is just another folly of youth? What, after all (my inner geezer grumbles), do kids know?
The heck with it. We should get out of South Korea. What are we doing there, anyway? They have a big, well-equipped conscript army of their own (in which Psy served, reluctantly). The Muslims should get out of France and all other non-Muslim countries. They have 57 of their own in which to wander around.
Now if you don’t mind, I’ll sign off. A new book arrived today, a best seller; I really want to get into it. It’s titled Back to Blood.