I've just read one of the most remarkable, even critical documents of our time. It's so vitally important to the future, not merely of the United States but of Mankind as a whole, that not to proclaim it far and wide would be a sin of omission for which no penance would be sufficient.
Wait for it. I have a couple of other things to say first. I trust you'll appreciate the perspectives they afford.
First, allow me to recount an episode from more than a decade ago. It occurred at the home of some friends, who had invited us over for dinner. They'd also invited another couple, about whom I’d been told nothing except that the husband, Abe, was someone "you might enjoy talking to, Fran."
Abe was a left-liberal of typical left-liberal opinions and arrogance. We fenced verbally for an hour or more -- apparently our mutual friends had told him a little about me and my proclivities -- during which:
- The topics were many and various;
- Abe repeatedly made factual assertions I could easily disprove, but which he insisted were true, while freely dismissing my factual assertions as "nonsense;"
- Despite severe temptations to do otherwise, I remained courteous. I was in someone else's home and felt an obligation to maintain the peace.
But there came a point where Abe felt he simply had to address what he deemed the inadequacies of President George W. Bush. Now, whatever Dubya's missteps were -- and I'll allow he made a number of them, some of which were quite serious -- he was a man of sterling character. You could believe that he meant what he said. When he proposed a plan of action, you could be confident that he was sincere about it and would prosecute it to the limit of his ability and authority. When Abe lit off in that direction, I could sense that trouble was on the horizon.
And indeed it was. I managed to hold myself in check throughout most of Abe's tirade, but when he sneered at Dubya for his Christianity -- for "needing the comfort of an imposed structure," as Abe put it -- I snapped.
"Do you have any idea," I said in a tone that might have issued from the bowels of the Earth, "what you just said to a devout, practicing Catholic?" I didn't wait for an answer. I turned on my heel and walked away. We exchanged no further words that evening. Indeed, my wife and I left without wishing him a good night.
I wrote some time ago -- apologies; I can't find the link -- that among the patterns that characterize men of good will is the tendency to assume that others are equally as benevolent. That attitude is one of the main supports to the maintenance of the conventional courtesies: broadly speaking, refraining from calling someone an idiot, fool, dupe, liar, slut, thief, murderer, or otherwise unsatisfactory person in a nominally social setting. Abe felt no such inhibitions, at least when his target was someone who wasn't physically present. When I put him on notice that he'd denigrated my convictions, his face fell apart. He couldn't believe I had reacted in such an unrestrained fashion. Why, it was positively discourteous. And after such a nice dinner, too!
I'd reached my limit. Everyone has one. Abe had found mine, whether or not he'd deliberately sought to do so.
It was the beginning of a rather sharp swerve in my attitude toward leftists who denigrate Christianity. I once felt it was something like an obligation to remain courteous, to try to demonstrate how far wrong they were by my conduct, erudition, and sound reasoning. Beneath that, of course, lay the assumption that they could be led to see their error and retreat from it: if not to the extent of becoming Christians, at least so far as allowing that we might not be the imbeciles, buffoons, and would-be oppressors they'd taken us to be.
The assumption was the problem. Indeed, it still is: far too many men of good will retain it, despite innumerable demonstrations that it is false-to-fact.
President Bush labored under that assumption, too. He repeatedly acted as if he accepted without question that his political adversaries were as benevolently inclined as he. He received numerous rebuffs without ever abandoning that premise. It cost him, and the country, in ways that still burden us and will continue to do so for some time to come.
To cut to the chase: Courtesy toward one another is a formal thing. It's not context-free; sustaining it requires a state of reciprocal obligation, in which all persons strive to remain courteous. It derives from the spirit of the Second Great Commandment: to love your neighbor as you love yourself. But one can maintain the specific standard of the Commandment without straining to remain courteous to an unmannerly boor.
Once Abe had demonstrated that he felt himself unbound by the courtesies, I declared myself free of them as well. But Abe is in no way exceptional among left-liberals. To left-liberals, courtesy and propriety are shackles for conservatives, Christians, and their other enemies. They have no interest in donning those fetters; they might keep them from winning an argument...or an election.
The double standard in political and social discourse has never been clearer. One side has declared itself outside all rules. It will lie, cheat, steal, sling unbelievably vile calumnies, and generally do whatever it deems useful to its aims, moral standards be damned. The other side strains to remain within the traditional standards of polite conduct, even to the extent of declining to give true coloration to the adversaries' words and deeds. The height of the madness is captured in this: left-liberals' slanders frequently include accusations that conservatives are doing what left-liberals have already done or are planning to do.
Religion has become a particular battleground. The Left has put its nominal atheism to the side to defend Islam, despite its exhortations to violence and oppression and the savagery of its most visible adherents. That's an outcome of leftist "othering," in which any enemy of American norms is immediately granted sanctuary within the Leftist fold. But Islam has sworn the destruction of its enemies -- Christianity and Judaism in particular -- and the Left, in support of its clients, has taken up cudgels against those faiths, while ceaselessly proclaiming that we whom it would destroy must be "tolerant of other faiths."
If you're familiar with the "Islamic Two-Step," this tactic should be familiar to you as well.
The spirit of the Great Commandments is generous beyond measure. As the angels who massed above Bethlehem sang, they proclaim peace on Earth and good will toward men -- all men. But the letter of the Law does not demand that Christians sit meekly and unresistingly before a campaign of annihilation.
Now for a snippet from the essay that I praised so highly in the opening segment:
The degradation of our culture has gone too far, and I’ve fucking had it....
This is the Progressive vision for the future, where fat and unhygienic is beautiful. This is a world in which John Scalzi is the pinnacle of writing talent, where Michael Moore is your script writer and Ben Kuchera is your journalist. Your State Department official is a moron who claims the unemployment numbers in Syria are largely responsible for global terrorism. Your own President cannot name who the terrorists are.
Utopia for Progressives is Hell on Earth, possibly worse than any the Bright One who Fell could think up. Your live entertainment will be based on vaginas. Your art is a Crucifix in a jar of piss, or period blood on canvas. Paul Krugman will be your personal banker, with every Western government worth mentioning so far in debt that the entire population could work for well over a year doing nothing but paying it, without coming close to discharging it....
I’m going to say two things in rapid succession, because, again, I’ve had it. My patience has been exceeded. The tank for tolerance is empty, it’s been running on fumes for years now.
I’m a Christian. Okay? And this is a remarkably unChristian thing for me to say, but if you don’t like it… to hell with you (I just realized this is a good pun). I’m tired of being Peter to the rest of the world and skirting the issue, denying it because it’s the fashionable, popular thing to do in a degenerate age, because it might mollify a gatekeeper lording over his own personal pile of waste. I encourage other Christians to do likewise. Proclaim it, loudly and proudly, and say “now what?” Yes, I DJ Industrial-Goth dance clubs, and I am a Christian. We’re everywhere, you know. And there are more of us than there are of them, even today.
Second, and I want to make this as abundantly clear as I possibly can with words, I’ve had enough of the destruction of Western Culture. Progressives have ruined all that is good and Holy on this planet. Wherever there is ugliness, you can be sure to find one of their ilk behind it. Not only do they loathe standards of conduct, beauty and comparison, they actively promote anti-standards. They deconstruct so far, they’ve tunneled straight through civilization and into barbarism, they are the men digging in the ground all the way to China.
They elevate diarrhea to fine wine, while pouring the good vintage down the drain. A beautiful woman in a bikini is an ugly demonstration of sexism, to them, instead of a wonderful example of femininity. A strong man is a patriarchal, heteronormative oppressor. The intellectual is a “mansplainer.”
When you next make use of the bathroom, know that your excrement, your bodily waste, is of higher value than anything they can produce. For at least that waste can become fertilizer for something greater. They are the snake, the worm, the voice of unreason. They are the Autumn People, the product of a century of spoiled children, rotten parenting and failing families. They are reared on garbage, educated by propagandists and coddled by elitist fucks living so far up the Ivory Tower they haven’t seen Terra Firma in their entire lives. Yet, as high up as they are, Dante knew their ilk well enough in the bottom rungs of Hell.
The garden is full of weeds, more wheels are squeaking for the greasing. Civilization is oinkin’ for the boinkin’ while politicians discuss the proper regulations for tree removal in my front yard.
Dystopic, you're my hero. I could not have said it better. Gentle Readers, please read the whole thing. Spread word of it far and wide.
A significant number of people look at me, probably because of my tirades here and elsewhere, as an authority of sorts: someone who can certify conclusions, award permissions, and pronounce absolution. In reality I'm nothing of the sort: just one more American with opinions he dares to set forth on the Web. I'm flattered by those who regard my reasoning as sound and my conclusions as important, but in reality the only thing that could make them important is if they were to become your reasoning and conclusions as well. If that's the case, I'm doubly flattered, but remember that it's you that made the critical difference.
All the same, in recognition of the exalted status I don't deserve, I hereby declare, ex cathedra from my bellybutton:
Dystopic has stated the case in the strongest possible terms. Perhaps some of you have already experienced what I did from Abe. Perhaps you've cringed before the larger syndrome Dystopic has so passionately denounced. Perhaps you've been wondering "is it time to take off the gloves?" I proclaim it so. Indeed, the time arrived some time ago.
They have placed themselves above the Law.
They are no longer entitled to the protection of its spirit.
Treat them as roughly as they treat you.
Leave them naked before the firehose of your contempt.
They have earned that and nothing more.
Have a nice day.