The guy who posted this, Tunku Varadarajan, obviously thinks he’s pretty sharp for dispensing with the annoying political correctness and calling the Ft. Hood massacre for what it is. We’ve gotten unfortunately used to events where a worker ‘goes postal’, so maybe it’s time we started calling these Muslim killings ‘going Muslim.’ Except for the fact that nothing like it has ever happened before, duh.
Tunku Varadarajan, 11.09.09, 12:00 AM EST
America after Fort Hood.
“Going postal” is a piquant American phrase that describes the phenomenon of violent rage in which a worker–archetypically a postal worker–”snaps” and guns down his colleagues.
As the enormity of the actions of Maj. Nidal Malik Hasan sinks in, we must ask whether we are confronting a new phenomenon of violent rage, one we might dub–disconcertingly–”Going Muslim.” This phrase would describe the turn of events where a seemingly integrated Muslim-American–a friendly donut vendor in New York, say, or an officer in the U.S. Army at Fort Hood–discards his apparent integration into American society and elects to vindicate his religion in an act of messianic violence against his fellow Americans. This would appear to be what happened in the case of Maj. Hasan.
The stupidity and laziness apparent here are obvious, but I’ll point it out anyway. There’s no reason to assign a familiar name to a ‘phenomenon’ when it’s an unprecedented event. If a little green man broke into your house and shot your dog, would you call it ‘going alien’? If he came down the chimney, would you call it ‘going Santa’?
And there’s an obvious taint of ‘Muslims are dirty foreigners’ here throughout Varadarajan’s post. When an over-wrought worker ‘goes postal’, he’s apparently not a ‘seemingly integrated’ guy who ‘discards his apparent integration into American society’. That’s just what happens when Muslims do it.
Note to Tunku: Hasan was born in Arlington, Virginia.
The difference between “going postal,” in the conventional sense, and “going Muslim,” in the sense that I suggest, is that there would not necessarily be a psychological “snapping” point in the case of the imminently violent Muslim; instead, there could be a calculated discarding of camouflage–the camouflage of integration–in an act of revelatory catharsis. In spite of suggestions by some who know him that he had a history of “harassment” as a Muslim in the army, Maj. Hasan did not “snap” in the “postal” manner. He gave away his possessions on the morning of his day of murder. He even gave away–to a neighbor–a packet of frozen broccoli that he did not wish to see go to waste, even as he mapped in his mind the laying waste of lives at Fort Hood. His was a meticulous, even punctilious “departure.”
So not only was he a dirty foreigner, he was a sneaky dirty foreigner.
It’d be more accurate to say that a thinly veiled internet slur upon American Muslims is ‘going Varadarajan’, don’t you think? Incidentally, any of you seen what this guy looks like?
That’s one filthy-looking beard. And who the hell spells their name with two Us and five As? Somebody at Forbes should take a loooooong look at this guy.