"You shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you odd." ~Flannery O'Connor

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

Providence, Columbia, and the Thug-in-Chief

At first I was annoyed that my alma mater, Columbia University, invited Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad (henceforth referred to only as 'TIC'), to speak on campus. In the past, there have been instances when almost-as-famous people of decidedly un-PC views had been disinvited to speak at Columbia; so, why give the podium to a Holocaust denier and killer of American soldiers? Knowing academia in general and Columbia in particular as I do, it probably had to do with internal academic politics—at least consciously. But think I got the real answer yesterday: "It wasn't a setup, but it looks like that." For media purposes, looking like that is as good as being that. And God knows that.

President Lee Bollinger used his introductory remarks to trash the TIC, calling him "ridiculous" and "a cruel, petty dictator." When, in response to a question why Iran "executes" homosexuals (I think the questioner meant sodomites—or should have if he didn't), the TIC denied there are homosexuals in Iran, the student crowd erupted in laughter. One may safely say that the occasion was not a propaganda gain for the Iranian regime. The TIC could not have come off looking worse if the thing had been planned as a setup.

Which leads me to believe that higher powers planned it as a setup. The thing was providential. What motivated Bollinger's (deserved) insults was doubtless the need for damage control: he had taken a lot of heat for the invite and had to show some cojones, which he did. But all that political maneuvering had the salutary effect of showing off the TIC for what he is. As a rare and miraculous bonus, the students apparently agreed. That alone is proof of supernatural intervention.
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