In a comment of a March 31, 2007, thread on Dhimmi Watch, Hugh got around to notice—belatedly and parenthetically—the litmus test by which to measure the degree to which any given pundit appropriately understands the problem of Islam:
“Amazing,” writes Hugh, “how the matter of Islam has come to be a kind of ultimate test, separating the sloppy from the sober, those who take the trouble to learn before uttering, and those who do not. It's becoming a litmus test, possibly the best we have.”
Once again, Hugh is simultaneously on the mark, and off it. Yes, this is the litmus test. And it’s not merely “becoming” “a” litmus test, “possibly” the best—it has been the litmus test, par excellence, for at least three years now, at least in the minds of perspicacious thinkers.
But not only is Hugh being egregiously belated, and unacceptably parenthetical—expressing this in a mere comment buried in a thread rather than giving it pride of place in a formal thread—he is also oblivious to his peripheral vision, which would reveal another litmus test, of equal if not more importance: the litmus test by which
a) one recognizes that the primary litmus test is massively ignored;
b) one begins to analyze the nature and dimensions that would first describe, then begin to explain, this dominant and mainstream inertia, blindness and resistance to the primary litmus test.
The primary litmus test is worthless without a proper appreciation for the secondary litmus test.
The primary litmus test: Islam is the problem.
The secondary litmus test: Political Correctness is hindering the West from passing the primary litmus test.
One could go further and note that, in a certain meaningful sense, what we have called the secondary litmus test is in fact primary, insofar as it stands in the way—stands before—what we have called the primary litmus test. As such, the secondary litmus test must be passed first, before the primary one can be passed in any effectively sociopolitical sense.
At any rate, there is a crucial twin to the litmus test Hugh has gotten around to notice; and, as usual, Hugh is for all practical purposes oblivious to it—if, indeed, he would not be positively brusque in his hostility to the proposition of it.