My Thoughts

America has lost all sense of culture. It is true, for there “is no culture without a felt encounter with the divine. It is a contradiction in terms. There are mass habits, but no culture, because people lose the sense that they have anything of surpassing value to pass along.”[1] Apparently, CCW (Cancel Culture Warriors) have yet to get the memo, or, if they have, they have either cancelled their subscription or never subscribed, most likely the latter.

We are living in an anticultural society of moral misfits and delusional, dysfunctional morons with rings in their noses yanked and pulled to the left of radical by “educated” dystopian fantasts, none of whom have the slightest grip on reality. Anyone offended by such characterization: “If the shoe fits, wear it.”

As advertisers make their money persuading people that they want what they do not want, and need what they do not need, so the politician, especially in our time of constant noise, gains his power by keeping people in a continual state of fear, hatred, resentment, or vindictiveness, those passions so requisite to the common good. It is unreality. An education that is politicized makes young people less educable, insofar as they are caught up in the craze of the time. They will think that the world is going to hell. It has always been going to hell. A great part of the world has already staked its claims and laid its foundations in the ice.

We cannot get enough of unreality. It is like cotton candy to a greedy child, with mouth perfectly pink. A legislator from Oregon has recently proposed lowering the voting age to sixteen—years, not months, though many a young person in our time still sucks on the rubber nipple. Sixteen-year-old children should be permitted to vote, she says, “to protect their interests”. They have no interests. They run no businesses, they have no investments, they are not married, they own no homes; their interests are merely what their teachers from mass entertainment, mass politics, and mass education say they are. The scandal here is not that the legislator is in error. People do make mistakes. It is that she has taken leave of her senses, and nobody has demanded her recall. It is as if she had proposed to build a three-story house out of noodles and thus instigated an argument about whether the noodles should be linguine or lasagna. Unreality already is the political air we breathe. The problem is not whether we can get such children to think responsibly about reality. Aside from the exceptional, they never will. They cannot. They have insufficient experience. Our problem is whether we can get sixty-year-old children to cease brooding upon unreality.

Not likely. The current Speaker of the House, Nancy Pelosi, has given the Oregonian proposal her approval, and there are moves in a couple of other states also to lower the voting age.

One of the telltales of unreality is surely a failure to see how silly you are. Homer, Plato, Aristotle, Cicero, Virgil, Saint Paul, Saint Augustine—no use for the life of the mind, apparently. And everyone is silly; there are the fools who know it, and the more ridiculous fools who do not. Colleges are largely staffed by the latter.[2]      

It is impossible to misdiagnose the insanity that pervades. The leading indicator is the loathing and visceral hatred of virtue, morality, charity, and the divine. Bitter, vile, unrelenting hatred surrounds and threatens our very lives and Satan is laughing a mighty roar. There are, as there have always been, two sides to every argument, but these days the sides are like heat and cold, light and darkness, love and hate. There are no nuances, only is and is not.

I am reminded of three great friendships, the first, G.K. Chesterton and his “friendly enemy” George Bernard Shaw, the second between President Ronald Reagan and Speaker Tip O’Neil, and the third between Justices Ruth Bader Ginsburg and Antonin Scalia. They were often on opposite sides of the political and philosophical spectrum but always friends, eager to share their common humanity with one another.

Today, there are too few willing to speak out, out of fear of being “cancelled”, mobbed, beaten, arrested, imprisoned, or worse. Far too many refuse to look at both sides, choosing to hate for hate’s sake rather than making any effort to see the good—and the bad—in both sides. Position and policy are irrelevant; in a godless world, sin and immorality, of all things preposterous, are what delineates the argument. The clouds of unreality are clouding our judgment, blanketing the truth with lies. Everything is painted with raw, unadulterated animus. It is enough to gag a maggot.

The current reaction by the lunatic left over the nomination of Amy Coney Barrett to a seat on the Supreme Court is a perfect example. The only issue, the only issue that should be considered is her judicial record as it applies to the Constitution and the rule of law, but that of course would not do since there is near unanimous consent that her record is exemplary in such regard. Since she cannot be cancelled on merit, she must be opposed on personality, faith, family, and imagined non-judicial issues. She must be opposed, attacked, denigrated, destroyed at all costs, not on her judicial record, but because, as Senator Diane Feinstein told her on September 6, 2017, “I think in your case, professor, when you read your speeches, the conclusion is that the Dogma lives loudly within you. And that’s of concern when you come to big issues that large numbers of people have thought for, for years in this country.” Feinstein was referring to Judge Barrett’s devout Catholicism, which in itself was prima facie unconstitutional as it implied the application of a religious test on the then appellate court judicial nominee. No doubt, her Catholicism will again be central to those who oppose all things Trump. But there will be more, there already is. As the mother of seven, two adopted from Haiti, one leftwing author, Ibram Kendi, has stooped so low as to suggest she adopted Haitian children to shield herself from accusations of racism. In the end though, it boils down to one thing and one issue only: President Donald J. Trump. He nominated her, therefore, she must not be allowed a seat on the bus. All the rest is but fluff, angry cotton candy, with hardly “enough of an essence even to collapse.”      

Wake up America.

Just my thoughts for a Monday, for what it is worth.

[1] Anthony Esolen, Sex and the Unreal City: The Demolition of the Western Mind”, (San Francisco, CA: Ignatius Press, 2020), 13.

[2] Esolen, Sex and the Unreal City, 20-21.

About the author: Deacon Chuck

Deacon Chuck was ordained into the permanent diaconate on September 17, 2011, in the ministry of service to the Diocese of Reno and assigned to St. Albert the Great Catholic Community. He currently serves as the parish bulletin editor and website administrator. Deacon Chuck continues to serve the parish of Saint Albert the Great Catholic Community of the Diocese of Reno, Nevada. He is the Director of Adult Faith Formation and Homebound Ministries for the parish, conducts frequent adult faith formation workshops, and is a regular homilist. He currently serves as the bulletin editor for the parish bulletin. He writes a weekly column intended to encompass a broad landscape of thoughts and ideas on matters of theology, faith, morals, teachings of the magisterium and the Catholic Church; they are meant to illuminate, illustrate, and catechize the readers and now number more than 230 articles. His latest endeavor is "Colloqui: A journal for restless minds", a weekly journal of about 8 pages similar in content to bulletin reflections. All his reflections, homilies, commentaries, and Colloqui are posted and can be found on his website: Comments are always welcome and appreciated. He is the author of two books: "The Voices of God: hearing God in the silence" which offers the reader insights into how to hear God’s voice through all of the noise that surrounds us; and "Echoes of Love: Effervescent Memories" which through a combination of prose and verse provides the reader with a wonderful journey on the way to discovering forever love. He regularly speaks to groups of all ages and size and would welcome the opportunity to speak to your group.

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