Will Crazy Town Conservatism Backfire?

| Mon Aug. 2, 2010 1:29 PM EDT

Marc Lynch is optimistic that the current conservative meltdown over the Ground Zero mosque — along with their general increase in wild-eyed Muslim bashing — is going to backfire:

It's not just the clear national security imperative to build strong, positive relations with Muslims at home and abroad, and to avoid strengthening al-Qaeda's narrative of a clash of civilizations. It's not just about the security needs in counter-terrorism, where the Muslim-Americans most offended by right-wing bigotry are the main bulwark against radicalization in their communities. It's that the right-wing campaigns are so deeply and fundamentally contrary to American values. America is exceptional for its acceptance of faith in public life and for its tolerance of different religions within a common national identity. While the GOP base may thrill at the escalating anti-Islamic rhetoric, most mainstream Americans will recoil when this hits prime time. It may not look like it right now, but I think that the rising anti-Islamic trend on the right will backfire by highlighting its true extremism, if not downright lunacy.

It makes me happy that someone is out there to talk me down off the ledge. Maybe all this demagoguery will backfire! That would be great, wouldn't it?