Day By Day

Saturday, September 29, 2007

Cinematic Victimology

Kyle Smith has a nice piece in the Wall Street Journal on the sudden spate of violent films advancing liberal themes, titled "When Liberals Kill". It's well worth a read [here].

The basic problem such films face is how to justify their heroes' actions. After all, aren't liberals supposed to be enlightened, pacifistic, committed to reasonable dialogue? It's those nasty conservatives who are the mouth-breathing, knuckle-dragging, gun-toting troglodytes. So how can Jodie Foster start blowing people to bits and retain her status a lesbo-American icon? How can ultra-lib Matt Damon justify his mad murder sprees in the Bourne films?

Simple, Smith explains, make them victims. Jodie's character was raped and nearly killed, Matt's was waterboarded; experiences so terrifying that they justify mass slaughter.

So what we have here is murder as a form of therapy. Victims can't control themselves, so they can't be held responsible for the most heinous crimes, and through the exercise of violence they can restore their sanity.

As justifications go, this one is morally despicable, but it resonates with a major aspect of liberal ideology -- the repudiation of individual responsibility. Liberalism has moved from justifying violence on the part of others [all that root causes nonsense] to legitimizing it amongst themselves.

I don't know about you, but gun-toting liberals scare the bejeesus out of me.