Monday, May 21, 2007
Reconquista and Jihad
As I half-listen to the nattering in Washington about illegal immigration and the war in Iraq, what I find lacking among us is the spontaneous will to live...to assert forcefully, even unreflectively, and without apology our right to live, as we are and have been, regardless of its effects on others. The critical mass of those fools among us who cannot even imagine such an assertion has become lethal. The slow suicide of the West accelerates.
I had a shocking thought the other day, while moving from sleep to consciousness. That the things which our society has decided are faults which must be eradicated ---imperialism, racial hierarchy, containment of women, disdain of homosexuals, etc-- were in fact part of what made the large civilization possible. And that by removing them, the structure does not improve, but erodes and dies away...superceded not, I hasten to add, by another civilization more humane and inclusive, but by a competitor whose dark impulses will likely repeat ours but lack our gifts. And it will simply replace us, without apology.
Do the Chinese worry about human rights? Do Hispanics wonder if they are acting ungratefully and abusively toward a culture that takes them in? Do Muslims worry that their benighted religion has created nothing of value in centuries and that they might have a thing or two to learn from the formerly Christian kaffirs? I think not.
We will become the Indians.
I wondered if the deeply tragic structure of life on this planet only allows groups to flourish if in fact they include in their flourishing the very attitudes and behaviors that our religions and great thinkers abhor. Reminds me of a thought I had many years ago, relating to other matters, but perhaps generically true: "What if, in order to enjoy what you love most, you must at least tolerate, if not embrace, what you most hate?"
This year is the 40th anniversary of the "Summer of Love". Have I, by asserting my right to live freely as a gay man, aided and abetted the larger liberal virus that will eventually dissolve my whole world?
If I turn out to be wrong, I will be very happy.
at 9:01 AM