Wednesday, September 08, 2004

Fighting An Idea

Terrorism, quite simply, is an idea. The idea that you can get your way by terrorizing others gets embraced by people, who are then called "terrorists".

There are two ways to annihilate an idea:
  1. Kill all the people who have the idea, and destroy all the means they have of transmitting the idea.
  2. Replace the idea with a different, equally infectious, more acceptable idea.
That's it. There are no other ways to do it. Ideas are so easily transmitted that if you can't propose a better idea, you have to destroy any bearer to kill the undesirable idea.

And that is the whole point of installing democracy in Iraq. Democracy is a better idea than terrorism. It is a popular and contagious idea-- look how rabidly Americans support it. The craze of voting on things has even extended out to the United Nations. It is a fashion trend and the United States is a teen fashion magazine. We do it and then everybody else wants it too. But it's more than just contagious-- it's good. Democracy accomplishes a level of good for humankind that no other form of government can.

Iran is now surrounded on many sides by this idea of democracy. They have already been infected with it. How long will it be until the idea of democracy reaches critical mass?