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« Nazis versus libertarians | Main | Comments tracking »
Sunday
Mar292009

Justin Webb on America

Justin Webb takes a lot of stick from the commenters at Biased BBC, who see him as the identikit BBC socialist propaganda-monger. I've never been entirely sure about this, particularly since he took up the post of America editor.

Listen to him being interviewed on Excess Baggage, where he was punting his new book about America under Obama. He makes a very eloquent defence of the undiscovered middle of America and repeats the observation that he made some time ago that America is a very gentle place, at least outside of a few city centres. He tells the story of Virgin, Utah where there is a city ordinance decreeing that everyone must own a gun, and states that he thinks that Virgin is likely to be a very ordered and decent place (or something to that effect - I forget his exact words).  In fact, throughout the interview he repeats the observation of the gentleness of American society. When you think about it, this is a remarkable thing for a BBC journalist to say - it is surely the antithesis of BBC-think to make a connection between gun ownership and peaceful coexistence, no matter whether you think he's right or not.

I can't help but wonder if Webb has gone to America and turned into a second amendment advocate - if so, he surely can't say so - it would surely be the end of his career - but he seems to feel able to point to places like Virgin and quietly point out that it's not quite like we have been lead to believe.

It's an interesting observation and a useful contribution to the debate on the shambles that is British society. Credit where credit's due.

 

 

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Reader Comments (7)

Gentle, as in 'speak softly and carry a big stick'? ;)

I do think it's true though, for the most part. Even the fundy Christians tend to be nice to you because they want to coax you into salvation and think that potlucks are the way to the soul.

My favorite example of goodwilled american 'cause vigilantism' is the group of bikers who ride to the funerals of soldiers killed in Iraq to shield families from Rev. Phelps' disgusting anti-gay protests.
Mar 30, 2009 at 1:20 AM | Unregistered CommenterLanna
No worries he's gone native so what do they do.... http://www.bbc.co.uk/pressoffice/pressreleases/stories/2008/12_december/12/today.shtml

There that should get him back into the clutches of the leftie mindset
Mar 30, 2009 at 9:43 AM | Unregistered CommenterIanH
I love middle America, drove right across last year over six weeks. Glorious place for the most part. Not a place to make presumptions about. Australia though...
Mar 30, 2009 at 1:22 PM | Unregistered CommenterNB.
Good for you for making the point. You'r right that JWebb's career would be over if he ever made the Robert Heinlein point that "an armed society is a polite society".

Gun ownership, per se, is not guarantor of peace, however. What is also required is a strong civil society.And Middle America has that.
Mar 30, 2009 at 5:24 PM | Unregistered CommenterJohnathan Pearce
off-topic, I know, but have a look at what the policeman says in this article:
http://www.newsoftheworld.co.uk/news/242428/Id-never-report-rape-again.html

per
Mar 30, 2009 at 10:00 PM | Unregistered Commenterper
"led"
Mar 31, 2009 at 10:11 PM | Unregistered CommenterDB
If the BBC is going to have correspondents based in other countries then they need to

*Speak the local language(s)
*Understand the conventions, ways of doing things, system of government
*Actally like the people of the country and their culture

The danger is that they go native - like for example Alan Johnston in his "get myself kidnapped in Gaza" escapade. Barbara Plett seems to have gone native in Pakistan as well.

Their man in Australia has embedded himself with the metrosexual limousine-liberals so he gives us all a very skewed view from there.
Apr 1, 2009 at 12:52 AM | Unregistered CommenterJack Hughes

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