Check out the opening address by Sappho's Eva Agnete Selsing:
"... This year the award goes to an outstanding person, whose courage, wit, incomparable journalistic talent and, not least, characteristic sense of humor, has brought him much – and well-deserved – acclaim.
His books are international bestsellers, his columns in various prestigious newspapers and magazines are highly popular and read all over the world. They deal with a variety of topics. From islamofascism to popular culture.
He has given interviews, participated in panel debates, hosted radio and television shows and appeared on the Rush Limbaugh Show and with Sean Hannity on FOX News, just to name a few.
He is, indeed, as stated on his homepage: A one-man global content provider.
It is, of course, Mark Steyn who is this year’s recipient.
Not only as a consequence of his ample contributions as a cultural critic, but also for his success in influencing the debate on Islam, the disastrous ideology of multiculturalism and the crisis of the Western civilization.
His most famous book, America Alone – The end of the world as we know it, is among the most influential writings on those topics.
In it, he argues that when Europe falls due to heavy welfare statism, declining fertility rates and mass immigration, America will lose its continental ally. As a consequence, the prevalence of Western civilization and the freedom it has secured, will soon be history.
Those are harsh predictions. His critics say they are exaggerated and alarmist. But are they?
The European welfare states are real enough. The declining fertility rates are just as real. With its low fertility rate, the Spanish population will halve in a generation’s time, and it doesn’t look much better in Italy, Greece or Germany. On top of this, mass immigration from the third world has effectively begun the alteration of the European populations.
As Christopher Caldwell has put it: Can Europe be the same with different people in it?
This is the question which many of our fellow Westeners refuse to ask, let alone answer.
But what Steyn points to are facts. Facts. Not guesses or wild speculations. They are facts, and the mainstream media supported by the elitist intellectuals refuse to acknowledge or even discuss them.
And they, the intellectuals of the West, are another primary topic in the book.
Under the guise of human rights, the monstrous programme of multiculturalism has prevailed. Claiming that no culture is better than another – except for Christians and jews, who are, of course, always evil and oppressive – multiculturalism has succeeded in undermining the identity of the Westerners.
With the constant accusations of imperialism, slavery, colonialism, male chauvinism and racism, the people of the West have been taught to hate their own history. And a civilization that rejects its heritage is a civilization on the verge of death.
It might be that the islamofascicts who wish to exterminate us are our prime enemy, but our Western elites seem to do the job quite well by themselves.
And this cultural suicide is, as Steyn describes, enhanced by the demographic changes in Europe. As he writes in the book:
“A people that won’t multiply can’t go forth or go anywhere. Those who do will shape the age we live in. Because, when history comes a-calling, it starts with the most basic question of all: Knock-knock. Who’s there?”...
I was unable to find a decent transcript of Steyn's speech, but I think this article dealing with freedom of speech, written immediately upon return, is a good substitute:
"... Too many people in the free world have internalized Islam’s view of them. A couple of years ago, I visited Guantanamo and subsequently wrote that, if I had to summon up Gitmo in a single image, it would be the brand-new copy of the Koran in each cell: To reassure incoming prisoners that the filthy infidels haven't touched the sacred book with their unclean hands, the Korans are hung from the walls in pristine, sterilized surgical masks. It's one thing for Muslims to regard infidels as unclean, but it's hard to see why it's in the interests of us infidels to string along with it and thereby validate their bigotry. What does that degree of prostration before their prejudices tell them about us? It’s a problem that Muslims think we’re unclean. It’s a far worse problem that we go along with it.
Take this no-name pastor from an obscure church who was threatening to burn the Koran. He didn’t burn any buildings or women and children. He didn’t even burn a book. He hadn’t actually laid a finger on a Koran, and yet the mere suggestion that he might do so prompted the President of the United States to denounce him, and the Secretary of State, and the commander of US forces in Afghanistan, various G7 leaders, and golly, even Angelina Jolie. President Obama has never said a word about honor killings of Muslim women. Secretary Clinton has never said a word about female genital mutilation. General Petraeus has never said a word about the rampant buggery of pre-pubescent boys by Pushtun men in Kandahar. But let an obscure man in Florida so much as raise the possibility that he might disrespect a book – an inanimate object – and the most powerful figures in the western world feel they have to weigh in.
Aside from all that, this obscure church’s website has been shut down, its insurance policy has been canceled, its mortgage has been called in by its bankers. Why? As Diana West wrote, why was it necessary or even seemly to make this pastor a non-person? Another one of Obama's famous "teaching moments"? In this case teaching us that Islamic law now applies to all? Only a couple of weeks ago, the President, at his most condescendingly ineffectual, presumed to lecture his moronic subjects about the First Amendment rights of Imam Rauf. Where's the condescending lecture on Pastor Jones' First Amendment rights?
When someone destroys a bible, US government officials don’t line up to attack him. President Obama bowed lower than a fawning maitre d’ before the King of Saudi Arabia, a man whose regime destroys bibles as a matter of state policy, and a man whose depraved religious police forces schoolgirls fleeing from a burning building back into the flames to die because they’d committed the sin of trying to escape without wearing their head scarves. If you show a representation of Mohammed, European commissioners and foreign ministers line up to denounce you. If you show a representation of Jesus Christ immersed in your own urine, you get a government grant for producing a widely admired work of art. Likewise, if you write a play about Jesus having gay sex with Judas Iscariot.
But forget about notorious rightwing hatemongers like me. Look at how liberal progressives protect their own. Do you remember a lady called Molly Norris? She's the dopey Seattle cartoonist who cooked up "Everybody Draws Mohammed" Day, and then, when she realized what she'd stumbled into, tried to back out of it. I regard Miss Norris as (to rewrite Stalin) a useless idiot, and she wrote to Mark's Mailbox to object. I stand by what I wrote then, especially the bit about her crappy peace-sign T-shirt. Now The Seattle Weekly informs us:
You may have noticed that Molly Norris' comic is not in the paper this week. That's because there is no more Molly.
On the advice of the FBI, she's been forced to go into hiding. If you want to measure the decline in western civilization's sense of self-preservation, go back to Valentine's Day 1989, get out the Fleet Street reports on the Salman Rushdie fatwa, and read the outrage of his fellow London literati at what was being done to one of the mainstays of the Hampstead dinner-party circuit. Then compare it with the feeble passivity of Molly Norris' own colleagues at an American cartoonist being forced to abandon her life: "There is no more Molly"? That's all the gutless pussies of The Seattle Weekly can say? As James Taranto notes in The Wall Street Journal, even much sought-after Ramadan-banquet constitutional scholar Barack Obama is remarkably silent:
Now Molly Norris, an American citizen, is forced into hiding because she exercised her right to free speech. Will President Obama say a word on her behalf? Does he believe in the First Amendment for anyone other than Muslims?
Who knows? Given his highly selective enthusiasms, you can hardly blame a third of Americans for figuring their president must be Muslim. In a way, that's the least pathetic explanation: The alternative is that he's just a craven squish. Which is an odd considering he is, supposedly, the most powerful man in the world.
Listen to what President Obama, Justice Breyer, General Petraeus, The Seattle Weekly and Bluehost internet services are telling us about where we're headed. As I said in America Alone, multiculturalism seems to operate to the same even-handedness as the old Cold War joke in which the American tells the Soviet guy that "in my country everyone is free to criticize the President", and the Soviet guy replies, "Same here. In my country everyone is free to criticize your President." Under one-way multiculturalism, the Muslim world is free to revere Islam and belittle the west's inheritance, and, likewise, the western world is free to revere Islam and belittle the west’s inheritance. If one has to choose, on balance Islam’s loathing of other cultures seems psychologically less damaging than western liberals' loathing of their own..."