Pedantic Multiculturalism

From the archive, dusted slightly

The New Oxonian

There is a post just up from the very good writer Susan Jacoby. In it she claims,

I am an atheist with an affinity for non-fundamentalist religious believers whose faith has made room for secular knowledge. I am also a political liberal. I am not, however, a multiculturalist who believes that all cultures and religions are equally worthy of respect. And I find myself in a lonely place in relation to many liberals, political and religious, because I cannot accept a multiculturalism that tends to excuse, under the rubric of ‘tolerance,’ religious and cultural practices that violate universal human rights.

When it comes to Susan’s “lonely place,” as my students often say to me, I feel her.

We both realize that most religious liberals know that they live in a secular world, do not confront their daily affairs, social or business, as though the rewards and outcomes are governed by an…

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