Monthly Archives: October 2012

Bogus Multiculturalism

We are living in the American Era.  American is the center of the world.  It has been the sole superpower of the world since the collapse of the Soviet Union.  Is America really a great place to live?  I remember when Obama was once asked if America was exceptional.  He replied, that it was–but in the same way that Greece was exceptional, and other countries.  This was essentially a no.

The American Dream is simply a dream of exceptionality.  However, why do people want to come here?  In my pursuit for education I have repeatedly heard about the atrocities that America has committed and how reviled America is around the globe.  Revisionist historian like James Loewen and Howard Zinn indoctrinate students every year with their constant peddling of American denunciation.   Yet, it still seems that people flock literally in hoards to get here. What is great about America?  What really makes it unique?  Why is it–well, exceptional?

Take the idea of actually being American.  Let’s say I wanted to go to India because it just sounds “liberating” (despite the caste system, dowry, and arranged marriage).  Once I get there, I will find out that there is no way that even through citizenship that I will ever be accepted as Indian.  Being Indian requires two things.  Brown skin and Indian parents.  Being Indian is a function of birth and blood.  Without Indian parents and dark skin, I can never be Indian.  Contrast that with the United States.  This is an area in which our country is superior to any land in the world.  While many call our country exclusive, it is actually inclusive.  One can be granted citizenship and actually become American!  Being American has nothing to do with blood or birth; it has to do with embracing a certain way of life.  The life of the American dream.  Now, the unfortunate problem is what the “multiculturalists” are selling students in colleges and high schools across America today.

Multiculturalists actually provide the most “intellectual” critique of America to date.  This group is comprised mainly of minority activists and sympathetic white liberals who agree with foreign “ideology.”  In Nathan Glazer’s book, We Are All Multiculturalists Now, the prevalence of their impact is shown in great detail.  This group has actually become one of the leading shapers of young American minds.  What is their primary message?  They teach that Western Civilization and specifically America, is defined by oppression.  America n History is presented as an unrelenting series of atrocities against blacks, American Indians, Hispanics, women, and natives of the Third World.  This thematic material is the fiber for Howard Zinn’s textbook A People’s History of the United States.   Zinn isn’t the only one though.  We see it with James Lowen’s book, Lies My Teacher Told Me.  Also there is Cornel West, who teaches African-American studies at Harvard.  He says that American society is “chronically racist, sexist and homophobic.”  Political scientist Ali Mazrui goes even further, charging that the United States has been, and continues to be, “a breeding ground for racism, exploitation and genocide.”

The saddest part of all this is that multiculturalists insist that immigrants and minorities should not assimilate into American culture, because to do so is to cease being one’s self and to succumb to racism!  Perhaps Stanley Fish put it best, “Common values.  National unity.  Assimilation.  These are now the code words and phrases for an agenda that need no longer speak in the accents of the Know-Nothing party of the nineteenth century or the Ku Klux Klan of the twentieth.”  The objective of this movement is to encourage nonwhites in America to remain separate and to teach white Americans to accept and cherish these differences.  For the multiculturalist, diversity is the basis for American identity.  As a popular slogan has it, “All we have in common is our diversity.”

This group of ill-informed thinkers also seeks to fill white Americans with an overpowering sense of guilt and lame so that they accept responsibility for the sufferings of minorities in America and poorer people in the rest of the world.  Rev. Jesse Jackson offers a solution:  REPARATIONS.  “The amount we are owed,” says black activist Haki Madhubuti, “is in the trillions of dollars.”

President Obama was asked, “Do you believe in American Exceptionalism?”   To this he responded, “I believe just as the Brits believe in British Exceptionalism, and just as the Greeks believe in Greek Exceptionalism…”  Remember that one?

Our country is arguably the greatest nation.  We have been the center of the world for many years!  However, this view is going to be seen as ethnocentric.

First of all, the liberal will argue immediately that ethnocentrism is purely a Western concept and that we have foisted our “we are better than you” mentality on the world.  However, to make this case, one admits that they have a limited knowledge of history.  The ancient Greeks distinguished between the civilized and the barbarians.  Later, the medieval Christians drew their own distinctions: between the believer and the infidel.  Later, they would also draw another line, this time between the white man, and the yellow and brown and black men, who were held to be inferior.

In other cultures, we see the Chinese believed themselves to be the “Middle Kingdom.”  They felt they were the center of the universe.  They were so convinced of this that Western visitors like Matteo Ricci could only persuade the Chinese to use maps that were redrawn to place China at the center of the world!  Indian kings called themselves, Chakravarty Rajas, which literally means “universal sovereigns.”  Then of course there is Islam, who was on the opposite side of Christianity In the crusades.

Now, these claims made by great nations may sound plausible, but even small and primitive tribes make similar claims.  Anthropologist Ruth Benedict has shown that the less developed a tribe is, the more ethnocentric it is.

Exceptionalism, or in this case, ethnocentrism are not exclusive to the United States.  It is the world we live in.

Another argument will be surely made against the United States.  That is the argument of slavery.  This must be debunked.  First of all, slavery is wrong.  No matter the situation, slavery is wrong.  However, to say that slavery was purely Western, or to charge America with being the only pro-slave nation in the world, is asinine.  In his study Slavery and Social Death, the West Indian sociologist Orlando Patterson writes, “Slavery has existed from the dawn of human history, in the most primitive of human societies and in the most civilized.  There is no region on earth that has not at some time harbored the institution.”  A brief history of the world confirms this claim.  The Sumerians, Babylonians, and Egyptians practiced slavery.  The Christians, Indians, and Arabs partook in slavery.  It was widespread in Greece, Rome, and sub-Saharan Africa.  American Indians practiced it before Columbus came to America.

Well, if slavery isn’t Western, what is?  Simple.  The movement to END slavery.  Abolition is exclusively Western.  The historian JM Roberts writes, “No civilization once dependent on slavery has ever been able to eradicate it, except the Western.”  Now, of course slaves didn’t want to be slaves.  History is replete with runaways, revolts, and so forth.  However, when slaves were captured, if they got away, they were perfectly happy to take other people as slaves.

Never in the history of the world, outside of America, has a group of people eligible to own slaves moved to abolish the practice.  This attitude is reflected by the great Abraham Lincoln:  “As I would be a slave, so I would not be a master.”  The uniqueness of this approach is confirmed by the little known fact that African chiefs, who profited from the slave trade, sent delegations to the West to protest the abolition of slavery.

People also come to America because of the opportunity to achieve.  This is a country founded on the idea of the entrepreneur.  The merchant, trader, or entrepreneur has been reviled in most countries through all of history.  This wasn’t a high profession in most places.  Confucius said himself, “the highest man knows virtue, the low man knows what is profitable.”  Even in Europe, entrepreneurship is scorned.  It is better to have inherited money than earned money.  Inherited money is somehow virtuous, and earned money is a product of greed.  The founders flipped this understanding.  The entrepreneur is the enzyme for capitalism.  When we hear the phrase, “You didn’t build that….”  What he is essentially saying is that you got there in a way that wasn’t virtuous.  It probably incorporated greed.  If you somehow made more than someone else, it couldn’t have been because of merit, it had to be because the playing field wasn’t level.

I agree that America provides a place in which there is the opportunity for achievement.  However, one man said “The real reason people come here is because in America, even the poorest people are fat!”  There is economic opportunity, but the chance to write the script of your own life is the real American dream.  The destiny is up to you.  This is not so in other regions of the world.  We are in the driver’s seat of our own future.

Cited Sources

D’Souza, Dinesh, Whats So Great About America, Regenery Publishing, Washington DC 2002

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Humpty Dumpty’s problem

Humpty Dumpty sat on a wall,
Humpty Dumpty had a great fall.
All the king’s horses and all the king’s men
Couldn’t put Humpty together again.

I have heard this “nursery rhyme” for years, since I was a small child I suspect.  There doesn’t seem to be any real profundity to it at face value; however, once we begin to systematically deconstruct the actual meaning of this clever story, we can learn a great deal not only about Humpty, but about how our culture actually operates, and how it governs in most circumstances outside of the will of God.

Notice for a moment Humpty’s situation in life, or his sitz im leben.  We don’t see an apparent interest in self responsibility.  He is sitting on a wall when we first encounter him.  Now this description of our friend accurately mirrors a large portion of what we see today in contemporary society.  There seems to be a greater concern in a large segment of our population on social justice than there is on personal responsibility.  Not to be overtly political here, but this is the flaw of liberalism.  As a result, we see men and women falling by the wayside.  Essentially, they are waiting for life (or the government) to give something to them, and in the process, they fail to look after themselves.  Now, this is not to say that he wasn’t working (or holding a job, or being a responsible person) before the story began; but, from what we are given by way of the narrative, it seems that Humpty has been sitting life out.  The word of God tells us in Thessalonians, if a man doesn’t work, that he shouldn’t eat.  If a man is capable of working, and refuses to do so, this is a problem.  If he is going to just sit on a wall, he is going to be without.  That being said, if he is a man of personal responsibility, and he cannot find a job, we (church, charity, family) need to give him the resources to help in in the interim.  This is a contrast from a welfare state!

We then see that Humpty takes a great fall.  This shouldn’t come as a shock to you.  When we go against the word of God, and give up on personal responsibility and let ourselves rely on the government, life at some point is going to be self defeating.  When we give up on our personal responsibilities in life, and decide to let someone else be our “parent,” we are on a one-way course for disaster.  This is made manifest today in our over-dependency on welfare.  We have an staggering number of people who have decided that life owes them something, and that they do not owe it to themselves to be responsible.  As a result, we see lives falling apart, families literally splitting at the seams, and new generations being re-introduced to this lifestyle.  The saddest thing about the welfare state is its fitness level.  It has the ability to reproduce at an alarming rate.  This dependency has become the norm.  It was once a dreaded idea.  Now, it is dangled as a lure to get citizens to vote for certain political candidates!

In fact, I want to make a statement here.  The dependency today on civil government by a large majority of our citizens (white and black) has become more than just a dependency; it has become a religious worldview.  The plight of an entire race (African Americans) of people has even led to an entire non-evangelical theology that positions its believers as victims amidst a society that is set out to do nothing but cause them harm.  See Dr. Tony Evan’s book Oneness Embraced for more on this.  James Cone and his Liberation Theology (along with the fiery Dr. Jeremiah Wright) has done more to harm this people group more than he knows.  As a result, we are seeing an allegiance to a myth of “victimization.”  Life for the black American has been inexcusably difficult.  However, at no point should a self-respecting person view his/herself as a victim, and therefore justify doing away with personal responsibility as has been the case in portions of the black community.  There are too many success stories.  I can give too many examples of black Americans who have contributed to this country in a way I could only DREAM of.  I reject the idea that we live in a country in which racism is so bad that there is an unequal chance at success based on the color of skin, the location one is raised, or the socio-economic structure that one rises from.  (See Dinesh D’Souza’s book, The End of Racism)

On the subject of equality, we don’t need the accusatory exhorations of Malcom X.  Instead, Psalm 8 tells us that we are “created a little lower than God.”  We have essentially royal blood flowing through our veins.  How can one with royal blood ever hold to a worldview that posits an idea of victimization?  This is absurd.  The idea of victimization is a pose.  We are created to RULE the earth.  God has appointed us as His representatives here on earth.  He has always ruled the earth representatively through His people.  One certainly cannot be a ruler when they take the role of the victim.

The most disturbing aspect of the rhyme is that we see where Humpty seeks help once he falls.  He goes to the White House for help—“All the Kings Horses and All the Kings Men.”  The problem started in HIS house, and he thinks it can be solved by going to the WHITE HOUSE!  This is absurd.  Civil Government has absolutely no jurisdiction here.  Civil Government is an institution given by God as a way to keep society in order.  Government is a divine institution, and therefore it answers to God.  However, in this story, we don’t see any mention of the ultimate ruler (God) anywhere.  Humpty thought the president could fix the problem.  Instead of going to Pennsylvania Avenue, he should have been dealing with the problem at home.  Psalm 128 tells us that “Blessed is the man who fears God and walks in His ways.”  The first step to fixing men is getting them to fear God.  This is simply taking God seriously.

A Kingdom Agenda plan is essential for understanding how to incorporate a comprehensive theological framework around our lives.  It is only when we submit to this plan that we will begin to see God lead us and begin to fix Humpty Dumpty.

Psalm 128

How blessed is everyone who fears the Lord,
Who walks in His ways.
When you shall eat of the [a]fruit of your hands,
You will be happy and it will be well with you.
 Your wife shall be like a fruitful vine
Within your house,
Your children like olive plants
Around your table.
 Behold, for thus shall the man be blessed
Who fears the Lord.

 The Lord bless you from Zion,
And may you see the prosperity of Jerusalem all the days of your life.
 Indeed, may you see your children’s children.
Peace be upon Israel!

Let Us Flesh This Passage Out:

How blessed is everyone who fears the Lord,
Who walks in His ways.

We are called to fear the Lord.  Essentially, we need to take God seriously in every aspect of our life.  If we want to see our world get better, it has to start with the individual fearing God.  The Word of God says that the man will be blessed who Fears God and who walks in His ways.  This should be our desire.
When you shall eat of the [a]fruit of your hands,
You will be happy and it will be well with you.

If we fear God, he will bless us with nourishment.  We will not go without.  This is NOT prosperity Gospel.  On the contrary, this simply means that God will not leave us without.  It also says that we will be happy and well.  He will see to our health.  Of course, all things must be in line with His will and His way; but, God is simply telling us that He will bless the man physically who fears God spiritually.

 Your wife shall be like a fruitful vine
Within your house,
Your children like olive plants
Around your table.

A man who fears God will influence his wife.  She will grow in the Lord like a fruitful vine.  There is nothing like a Godly woman.  Olive plants refer to the fact that children could one day become olive trees.  Even today there are still Olive trees in the garden of Gethsemane that are thousands of years old.  If you teach the child when they are young, they will not depart from it.

Behold, for thus shall the man be blessed
Who fears the Lord.

 The Lord bless you from Zion,

We are blessed when we  go to Zion.  We must go to the temple and worship with other believers.  It is here that we see we are a part of something bigger.  In the days of the OT, wives didnt have to wake the men up and say “are we going to church today, honey?”  No, the men dictated this to the family.  Today we see an overabundance sissy-fied men.  Will the real men stand up? 

And may you see the prosperity of Jerusalem all the days of your life.
 Indeed, may you see your children’s children.

The man who fears the Lord will see the next generation…his grandchildren fear the Lord.

Peace be upon Israel!

The man who truly fears the Lord can influence the World so much that Peace can be upon Israel.

You see, Humpty had it wrong.  To fix our problems we have to start with ourselves.  Only God can solve these issues, but it takes an individual being willing to submit and fear God.  If we are willing to do this we can influence our family.  The family can influence Zion.  The church can then go forth and influence the culture.  The culture can then influence the world.

If you want to make the world better, you have to make the men better.  Humpty has to get put back together.  This doesn’t happen after he’s fallen off a wall.  It doesn’t happen with the help of the government.  The only thing the government is good at is writing tickets.  It must start with fearing God.

The reason we are against racism is because a person’s race is sacred. A
person’s ethnicity is sacred. You cannot violate it. My race is sacred; your
race is sacred; I dare not violate it. The reason we react against the issue of
homosexuality the way we do is because sexuality is sacred. You cannot violate
it. How do you treat one as sacred and desacrelize the other? Sex is a sacred
gift of God. I can no longer justify an aberration of it in somebody else’s life
than I can justify my own proclivities to go beyond my marital boundaries.

Every man here who is an able-bodied man will tell you temptation stalks
you every day. Does it have anything to do with your love for your spouse?
Probably not, because you can love your spouse with 100% desire to love the
person, but the human body reacts to the sight entertained by the imagination
and gives you all kinds of false hints that stolen waters are going to be
sweeter. They are not. They leave you emptier. So a disposition or a proclivity
does not justify expressing that disposition and that proclivity. That goes
across the board for all sexuality.

When God created mankind and
womankind, it was His plan, not our plan. It is extraordinary what He said. He
said, ‘It is not good for man to live alone.’ Well, man wasn’t living alone; God
was with him. Why did He say that? He created the mystique and the majesty and
the charm and the complimentary nature of womankind in a way that made it
possible for her to meet his emotional needs that God, Himself, put only within
her outside himself from himself in her in that complimentariness. It is a
design by God.”

Ravi Zacharias

 

 

I read recently about a group of gay men marching in a pro-choice rally.  They were dressed in the stereotypical style of gay camp, and they carried banners that listed various homosexual organizations and said things like Queers for Choice (even though I thought this term was politically incorrect).  I thought hard about that.  What possible interest would homosexuals have in such an issue?  Why would they be at this rally?  Then it dawned on me!  Many times it seems the gay community hopes to legitimize their lifestyle by promoting a view of sexuality that is completely severed from reproduction.

Homosexuality, as their political activism suggests, has become an ideology.  This is a clear departure from the homosexuality from the past.  We can look throughout the account of history to see exactly how this lifestyle choice has, to use a word from our president, “evolved.”  Among the Greeks, for instance, there were many homosexuals.  Socrates, one could argue strongly, was a homosexual.  But this fact tells us very little about what Socrates thought about democracy, or about poverty, or about how Greeks should treat Persians.  By contrast, today, homosexuality has become a worldview.

Edmund Burke said, “There have always been atheists among us.”  “But now they have become turbulent and seditious.”  I suppose this is how I feel about the gay movement.  Following in the path of the civil rights movement, these activists have developed a shrewd three-step maneuver.

  1.  Tolerance:  Here, the argument is:  “You may think we are strange and disgusting, but put up with us.”  Many Americans go along with this.
  2. Neutrality:  This involves a stronger claim:  “You should make no distinction between heterosexuality and homosexuality.”  If heterosexuals can marry and adopt children, for example, gays should be able to do the same.
  3. Subsidy:  If 1 and 2 are conceded:  “We have been discriminated against for centuries, so now we want preferential treatment.”  Look at DADT for more.

The big issue now is gay marriage (DOMA repeal for example).  Though they claim it, it doesn’t seem that a large portion of gays want to marry.  The reason for this seems fairly obvious:  Marriage could put a crimp in the promiscuity-laden lifestyle that many enjoy.  This being so, many activists have lined up behind the marriage cause, partly to collect health benefits and other legal advantages conferred by marriage, but mainly for another reason.

To gain full social recognition for their worldview—homosexuality.

The real goal of this group in my opinion is to break down any moral objection to their lifestyle.  There has been considerable progress on their behalf in this area.  Not long ago, homosexuality was considered an illness.  Now, biblical, moral, or even medical criticism of this lifestyle is described by gay partisans as a psychological disorder.  There is even a name for this disorder.  The person that has biblical or moral qualms about this behavior is termed “homophobic.”

So, the question remains:  Should gays be allowed to marry?  Perhaps the most ingenious augment in favor of this has been offered by journalist Andrew Sullivan.  To his credit, Sullivan concedes that some elements of the gay male lifestyle, such as reckless promiscuity, endanger society as well as the lives of the homosexuals who live this way.  He argues, however, that it is a type of social ostracism that marginalizes gays, especially male homosexuals, and makes them behave in this manner!  If they were allowed to be a part of society—participating equally in every facet like heterosexuals—in its normal ceremonies, rituals, etc—he is confident that this outrageous element of gay culture would reduce.  His entire argument could be framed like this:

Marriage Civilizes Men.

Sullivan is wrong—quite wrong, actually.  It isn’t marriage that civilizes men at all.  Marriage doesn’t civilize men, women do.  The great Ronald Reagan made this point years ago.  If not for the woman, men would still be running around in animal skins beating each other with clubs.  He has a point.  Nature has to be tamed, and that taming is done by women.

This being said, why should we prevent people who love each other from getting married?  I hear this question a lot from gays and from heterosexuals.  Here is the problem.  Marriage is defined as the legal union of two adults of the opposite sex who are unrelated to each other.  This is the basic definition.  This is also echoed in scripture if one looks at Matthew 19 (notice I didn’t quote Leviticus).  So now we have the basic definition.  What stops us from revising the definition, or say, repealing DOMA?  Well, what if a group of Mormons, and oh, a group of Muslims joined together and formed a following and desired to press for the legalization of polygamy?  The argument could also proceed:  “I want to have four wives, because we are all in love.”  Another man might say, “Why can’t I marry my sister?”  Or the more bizarre and exotic, “I love my dog and my dog loves me.”

My point is that love is great.  However, love is not sufficient grounds for marriage.  You can love someone all you want, and though this is requisite for marriage, this is not sufficient condition for marriage.  Why does our society honor this arrangement and grant it special legal status, including social recognition and tax benefits that go with it?  The answer is simple.  Marriage is the incubator of children.   This is the only known union that results in the healthy cultivation of the next generation.  The inability to bear children is one area in which gay couples are inherently deficient.

Andrew Sullivan isn’t satisfied.  He makes the case that not all heterosexual couples can have children, yet society doesn’t prevent them from being married.  Though this is a valiant try, this suffers from being a bad argument and Sullivan though extremely intelligent, shows that he has a misunderstanding of the nature of social rules.  For example:  To get a driver’s license, you must be 16 years old.  You must be 18 to vote.  Driving and voting both require a specific level of maturity and the ages at which the rights can be attained represent these differences.  Now, some adults have no maturity, yet we do not exclude them.  I also understand that there are some highly mature minors that could probably drive and vote effectively, but we don’t let them.  The point here is that rules are general propositions based on a presumed connection between the established criteria and the behavior that is desired, even though the result may not always be favorable.  This is the same with marriage.

This being said, I feel it is equally important to note that not all heterosexuals should be married.  Paul says as much in the Bible.  This is my feeling as well.  I typically feel the same way that Dr. James Merritt does, that the sin is NOT homosexuality, but that the sin is a immoral lifestyle.  An immoral lifestyle can be found in both the lives of homosexuals and heterosexuals.  The divorce rates are up.  Don’t think for a second that it is coincidence.  Many people today are getting married when they actually aren’t intended for marriage.  Some are actually intended to remain single and to devote more time to the Church.  This may be the best answer I can give to one struggling with the question of whether or not a homosexual can marry.  First, are you a follower of Christ?  Second, if you are, an active homosexual lifestyle and living in sexual immorality is not in God’s will.  I do not believe in shock therapy and I do not believe in hate.  I do believe that God can renew us by the transforming of our minds.  God has a plan for each of us, gay or straight.  However, we cannot substitute His plan for our happiness.

D’Souza, Dinesh, Letter’s To a Young Conservative, Basic Books, New York, 2002.

Bloom, Allan, The Closing of the American Mind, Simon and Schuster, New York, 1987

Evans, Anthony T., The Kingdom Agenda, Word Books, 1995

Defense of Marriage? Isn’t that Homophobic?

Postmodernism and anti-truth–and their fallacy

Who is the postmodernist?  The postmodernists are the “Truly Profound Ones” in society.  By way of illustration, consider a passage by literary theorist Geoffrey Hartman:

 “Because of the equivocal nature of language, even identities or homophones sound on:  the sound of Sa is knotted with that of ca, as if the text were signaling its intention to bring Hegel, Saussure, and Freud together.  Ca corresponds to the Freudian Id; and it may be that our only ‘savior absolu’ is that of a ca structured like the Sa-significant:  a bacchic or Lacanian ‘primal process’ where only signifier-signifying signifiers exist.”

Just copying and typing that wore me out.

This snippet has ALL the trademarks of postmodern thought.  It is highly verbose, pompous, comes off as possibly condescending, and incoherent.  To a particular type of person, the rather intellectually insecure, postmodernism can appear profound:

“Gee that sounds very complicated.  These people must be incredibly brilliant.”

Tens of thousands of graduate students have been fooled in this way by people such as Hartman and the master of postmodernism, Jacques Derrida.  Serious intellectuals can see through this though.  Go track down Michel Foucault’s quote on Derrida.

Foucault, when asked about Derrida’s, said that Derrida practiced the method of obscurantisme terroriste (terrorism of obscurantism):

“He writes so obscurely you can’t tell what he’s saying, that’s the obscurantism part, and then when you criticize him, he can always say, ‘You didn’t understand me; you’re an idiot.’ That’s the terrorism part.”

Though many are incoherent, it would be a great mistake to dismiss all postmodern thought in this way.  Philosopher Richard Rorty (the guy who wants to undermine the parents of students) and literary critic Stanley Fish are lucid writers, and have made substantial claims.  Both make the case that there is no objective truth (though I am sure they expect you to believe that statement itself to be true).  They hold to an ideology that says that not even science can describe “the world out there.”  In a New York Times article, Fish suggested that the rules of science are just as arbitrary as the rules of baseball!

The problem with postmodern theory is that it suffers from the weakness that the holders of the ideology don’t really believe it, as their actions show.  When Rorty needs a medical exam, he doesn’t go to a witch doctor, he goes to the medical center.  When Fish goes to do an academic lecture, he doesn’t travel by oxcart, he flies by plane!  Even the biologist/atheist Richard Dawkins asserts, “Show me a relativist at 30,000 feet and I’ll show you a hypocrite!”  Airplanes fly because of objective truths and mathematical calculations that engineers have gotten right.

Even Chesterton wrote about this in his book, Whats Wrong With the World.  In his essay titled, “The Medical Mistake” he says:

“A book of modern social inquiry has a shape that is somewhat sharply defined.  It begins as a rule with an analysis, with statistics, tables of population, decrease of crime among Congregationalists, growth of hysteria among policemen, and similar ascertained facts; it ends with a chapter that is generally called “The Remedy.”  It is almost wholly due to this careful, solid, and scientific method that “The Remedy” is never found.  For this scheme of medical question and answer is a blunder; the first great blunder of sociology. It is always called stating the disease before we find the cure. But it is the whole definition and dignity of man that in social matters we must actually find the cure before we find the disease .”

He then goes on to say:

“The fallacy is one of the fifty fallacies that come from the modern madness for biological or bodily metaphors.  It is convenient to speak of the Social Organism, just as it is convenient to speak of the British Lion.  But Britain is no more an organism than Britain is a lion.  The moment we begin to give a nation the unity and simplicity of an animal, we begin to think wildly. Because every man is a biped, fifty men are not a centipede. This has produced, for instance, the gaping absurdity of perpetually talking about “young nations” and “dying nations,” as if a nation had a fixed and physical span of life.”

He makes an important point here:

“Now we do talk first about the disease in cases of bodily breakdown; and that for an excellent reason.  Because, though there may be doubt about the way in which the body broke down, there is no doubt at all about the shape in which it should be built up again.  No doctor proposes to produce a new kind of man, with a new arrangement of eyes or limbs. The hospital, by necessity, may send a man home with one leg less: but it will not (in a creative rapture) send him home with one leg extra.”

What an incredibly profound quote.  We do all agree on some form of truth.  In fact it was Chesterton himself who would make a critique of the atrocious pro-abortion position.  He said in an article once that,

“Whatever we may think of the merits of torturing children for pleasure, and no doubt there is much to be said on both sides, I am sure we all agree that it should be done with sterilized instruments.”

What he is saying is that though we disagree on things, there ARE truths that just exist.  We may deny morality, like in the case of abortion for example, but yet we invoke it through the use of human practice and sterilization.  If there is no such thing as morality, or a concept of right and wrong–why bother?

Chesterton further comments on society and how we agree on truths when it comes to the human body, and even invoke medical language to talk about political theory; yet agree on no point of reference.

“But social science is by no means always content with the normal human soul; it has all sorts of fancy souls for sale.  Man as a social idealist will say “I am tired of being a Puritan; I want to be a Pagan,” or “Beyond this dark probation of Individualism I see the shining paradise of Collectivism.”  Now in bodily ills there is none of this difference about the ultimate ideal. The patient may or may not want quinine; but he certainly wants health No one says “I am tired of this headache; I want some toothache,” or “The only thing for this Russian influenza is a few German measles,” or “Through this dark probation of catarrh I see the shining paradise of rheumatism.” But exactly the whole difficulty in our public problems is that some men are aiming at cures which other men would regard as worse maladies; are offering ultimate conditions as states of health which others would uncompromisingly call states of disease.  Mr. Belloc once said that he would no more part with the idea of property than with his teeth; yet to Mr. Bernard Shaw property is not a tooth, but a toothache. Lord Milner has sincerely attempted to introduce German efficiency; and many of us would as soon welcome German measles. Dr. Saleeby would honestly like to have Eugenics; but I would rather have rheumatics.”

Chesterton ends his disquisition with a poignant and scathing critique of society:

“This is the arresting and dominant fact about modern social discussion; that the quarrel is not merely about the difficulties, but about the aim.  We agree about the evil; it is about the good that we should tear each other’s eyes cut. We all admit that a lazy aristocracy is a bad thing. We should not by any means all admit that an active aristocracy would be a good thing.  We all feel angry with an irreligious priesthood; but some of us would go mad with disgust at a really religious one. Everyone is indignant if our army is weak, including the people who would be even more indignant if it were strong. The social case is exactly the opposite of the medical case. We do not disagree, like doctors, about the precise nature of the illness, while agreeing about the nature of health. On the contrary, we all agree that England is unhealthy, but half of us would not look at her in what the other half would call blooming health . Public abuses are so prominent and pestilent that they sweep all generous people into a sort of fictitious unanimity. We forget that, while we agree about the abuses of things, we should differ very much about the uses of them. Mr. Cadbury and I would agree about the bad public house. It would be precisely in front of the good public-house that our painful personal fracas would occur.

I maintain, therefore, that the common sociological method is quite useless:  that of first dissecting abject poverty or cataloguing prostitution.  We all dislike abject poverty; but it might be another business if we began to discuss independent and dignified poverty.  We all disapprove of prostitution; but we do not all approve of purity.  The only way to discuss the social evil is to get at once to the social ideal. We can all see the national madness; but what is national sanity? I have called this book “What Is Wrong with the World?” and the upshot of the title can be easily and clearly stated. What is wrong is that we do not ask what is right.”

So, is there any truth out there?  Can we ALL agree on anything?  Science works because the universe is governed by laws and certain regularities.  Science is devoted to studying and discovering those laws.  This does however, suggest a creator!  Now, scientists do not claim knowledge of objective or final truths, but they do insist that the Newtonian account of the universe is superior to the Ptolemaic, and that the Newtonian has been surpassed by that of Einstein.  It is only when science has endured criticism and testing that findings are found to be true.

I am reminded of Hume, Ayer, and their objections to miracles as presented in the Bible.  They put forth an idea that has been a priori for at least the last 150 years.  This is the idea of the Verification Principle.  It states, that for a thing to be fact, it must be a) self evidently true (2+2=4, or all bachelors are unmarried men) or b) be verifiable in a scientific laboratory.  If neither a) or b), “commit it to the flames,” says Hume.  There are two problems–The Verification Principle itself is not self evidently true and is certainly not verifiable in a lab–so–commit it to the flames, right?

Secondly, the idea of miracles as put forth by Hume is a violation of the laws of science.  Is this true?  I think not.  It was C.S. Lewis who told us to imagine coming home at the end of a long day, and putting 1,000 dollars in your drawer, and 1,000 dollars under your mattress.  In the morning, you should expect to find 2,000 dollars.  What if you were to wake up and only find 50 dollars?  Would you conclude that the laws of mathematics had been broken?  No!  You would conclude that the laws of the land had been broken and that a robber  had entered your house and stolen the money.

This is the same issue with miracles.  We know miracles are actions caused by an outside agent BECAUSE, we know the laws of the universe to be constant.  In fact, C.S. Lewis would go on to say that,

“Men became scientific because they expected Law in Nature, and they expected Law in Nature because they believed in a Legislator.”

While they are too embarrassed to challenge science, many liberal scholars will concede that facts are known, but proclaim that values are relative.  Values to them are the product of individuals and cultural preferences.

The Greeks disagreed with this.  They felt that there was a moral code in the universe that was real.  They felt that this moral order was accessible to human intellect, just like the laws of nature.  On what basis do liberal scholars reject the Greek view?  Simple.  They point to the existence of widespread moral diversity.  America is quite diverse.  We have different views on morality.  This is often argued and the point will be proclaimed that there is simply no moral truth.

Another way they will argue this is to try to appeal to reason.  They will argue that there are no absolutes in the universe.  Well, by making this very statement, they have created an absolute.  Therefore, this is self-defeating.  They have committed a violation of the rule of non-contradiction.

We must make a case for morality while much of the world, and most of our country (America) is fleeing from it.  This decline of morality has created the “crisis of the West.”  This crisis is not simply of  the “death of God.”  As Nietzsche predicted, if religion withers away, so does morality.  The reason is that religion is the primary source of morality, and therefore morality cannot long survive the decay of religion.

How will the liberals response to a decline of morality?  They will rejoice.  They will welcome it in the name of freedom.  This was Nietzsche’s response as well.  Liberals, like Nietzsche, speak about creating “new values.”  Some even dream about creating a “new man” free from the traditional impediments of human nature.  Consider this quote from Richard Rorty (remember to him there is no absolute truth):

  “It seems to me that the regulative idea that we heirs of the Enlightenment, we Socratists, most frequently use to criticize the conduct of various conversational partners is that of ‘needing education in order to outgrow their primitive fear, hatreds, and superstitions’ … It is a concept which I, like most Americans who teach humanities or social science in colleges and universities, invoke when we try to arrange things so that students who enter as bigoted, homophobic, religious fundamentalists will leave college with views more like our own … The fundamentalist parents of our fundamentalist students think that the entire ‘American liberal establishment’ is engaged in a conspiracy. The parents have a point. Their point is that we liberal teachers no more feel in a symmetrical communication situation when we talk with bigots than do kindergarten teachers talking with their students … When we American college teachers encounter religious fundamentalists, we do not consider the possibility of reformulating our own practices of justification so as to give more weight to the authority of the Christian scriptures. Instead, we do our best to convince these students of the benefits of secularization. We assign first-person accounts of growing up homosexual to our homophobic students for the same reasons that German schoolteachers in the postwar period assigned The Diary of Anne Frank… You have to be educated in order to be … a participant in our conversation … So we are going to go right on trying to discredit you in the eyes of your children, trying to strip your fundamentalist religious community of dignity, trying to make your views seem silly rather than discussable. We are not so inclusivist as to tolerate intolerance such as yours … I don’t see anything herrschaftsfrei [domination free] about my handling of my fundamentalist students. Rather, I think those students are lucky to find themselves under the benevolent Herrschaft [domination] of people like me, and to have escaped the grip of their frightening, vicious, dangerous parents … I am just as provincial and contextualist as the Nazi teachers who made their students read Der Stürmer; the only difference is that I serve a better cause.”

 

The liberal commune, based on shared possessions and free love, is one such social experiment.  The Nazis and Communists also tried to create new men and new values, with less benign results.  C.S. Lewis warned us about “Men without Chests.”  God help us.

 

A Look at Lincoln-Douglas Slavery Debate–a Parallel to the Abortion problem

Being that we are experiencing a political race and the candidates are busy in the middle of debates, I thought I would opine about a specific set of debates that took place in our nation’s history.  One has to certainly be familiar with the Lincoln-Douglas debates if they have followed history at all.  However, in this particular blog, I would like to use their debate to argue about the topic of abortion.  Let me first say that for the Christian, the idea of legalized abortion is an illegitimate issue.

The Lincoln-Douglas debates did not deal with abortion.  As a matter of fact, they dealt with the issue of slavery.  However, if we look closely at the candidates arguments, we see a clear parallel to the abortion debate.

Douglas, the Democrat, adopted the pro-choice position.  He felt that each state should be able to decide whether or not it wanted slavery.  However, Douglas conveniently denied that he was pro –slavery.  In fact, at one point, he professed to be “personally opposed” to it.  However he felt personally, he refused to impose his moral views on the new territories; instead, he proclaimed that each state had the right to choose.  This is invoking the great principle known as the freedom of choice.

Lincoln (arguably one of the greatest presidents to ever exist), the Republican vehemently disagreed with Douglas.  His argument basically stated that choice could not be exercised without reference to the content of choice.  How does it make rational sense to allow one person to own another?  How can one person’s own self-determination be invoked to deny the self determination of another?  How can choice be used to negate choice?  At the root level, Lincoln argued that the legitimacy of freedom as a political principle is itself dependent on a doctrine of natural rights that arises out of a specific understanding of human dignity.

If Black people are like hogs, Lincoln said, then the pro-choice position is right, and there is no problem with choosing to own them.  An animal may be freely governed without its consent.  However, if the Black person is really a person, then it is monstrously evil to treat them like hogs, to buy and sell them as merchandise.

This argument is very similar in content and form to the pro-choice and pro-life debate today.  The advocates for pro-choice don’t like to be called “pro-abortion.”  Many of them are “personally opposed.”  A good question for the modern liberal is, “Why are you personally opposed?”  The only reason for one to be morally opposed to abortion is because one recognizes that a fetus (baby) is more than just a random collection of cells, that it truly is a developing person.

The weight of the argument is clearly in favor of the pro-life movement.  However, the pro-choice crowd seems to be winning politically.  Why is this?  It’s simple.  The modern liberal understands that abortion-on-demand is the debris of the sexual revolution.  If we are going to have sexual promiscuity and have it run rampant, there are going to be mistakes, and many women will become unintentionally pregnant.  For these women, the fetus becomes what feminists refer to as “an uninvited guest.”  The modern liberal holds to the opinion that as long as this alien is occupying the womb of the modern woman, it is an enemy of her autonomy!  Liberalism will grant her full authority over the life of this innocent child, even to the point of murder.  No other LIBERAL principle like compassion or equality will be allowed to get in the way to stop the principle of autonomy.

Abortion reveals the bloody essence of modern liberalism.  In fact, this is an issue that liberals do NOT very often compromise on.  Being pro-choice is almost a sort of litmus test for nomination to Democratic politics.  Liberals as a corporate group oppose any restriction of abortion.  Some liberals would even allow for partial birth abortions, a horrific procedure where the abortionist dismembers the fetus who could otherwise survive outside of the womb.  One may say that in the sanctuary of modern liberalism, abortion has become some sort of sacrament.

What then is the challenge facing the pro-life folks?  It is the same one that Lincoln faced:  to build popular consent for the restriction and ultimately the ending of abortions.  Right now, the pro-life movement doesn’t have the support it needs from the American people to do this.  Lincoln, by the way didn’t have a national mandate to end slavery.  It is highly significant that Lincoln was not an abolitionist.  He was resolutely ANTI-slavery in principle, but his political campaign focused on the issue of curtailing the spread of slavery to the territories.  There is a lesson to be learned here.

 

some info gleaned from–D’Souza, Dinesh, Letters to a Young Conservative, Basic Books, New York, 2002.

The Decline of the Family in Society–Who Is To Blame?

Many in society today subscribe to moral relativism.  In short, it is up to the individual as Rousseau said to determine their own moral value system.  Many today for example have no moral objection to homosexual behavior, only an uncomfortable feeling about it.  However, that doesn’t mean that one has to support “homosexual rights,” because homosexuals as individuals do have the same basic rights as everyone else.  They will argue that they do not however, have the right to marry.  This is absurd.  They have as much right to marry adult members of the opposite sex as any heterosexual.  They may choose to avail themselves of this right, just as someone may choose to give up their right to vote, however; this does not mean that they are the carrier of any less rights.  That being said, I want to discuss the idea of the breakdown of family in our society.  I do not believe that homosexuality is the blame primarily—it is the fault of heterosexuals.

Sadly enough we have reached a point in our society where the family has become a political issue and being “pro-family,” prevents us from telling the entire truth about what the family entails.  The idea of family has been a constant theme throughout all of Western Literature, from Sophocles to Shakespeare to Jane Austen to Tolstoy.  One of the ideas that we see throughout the description of the family is that the family unit is sometimes a pain!  We see the evidence of arguing, fighting, disagreement, and strife.  Consider it this way: we spend our lives with people we don’t choose!

This situation is going to cause problems.  The challenge is that we cannot voice this or discuss the issue at hand because we are “pro-family” and it would only give ammo to those who would rather weaken the family.  The great writers of the West however had a different view:  They knew that, whatever may be going on in life, there was no serious alternative to the family.  They understood that the family is a flawed, but essential, institution.

Why is it an indispensable institution?  Well, children for one have come into the world as barbaric creatures.  In my short time being a father, I have realized that babies are not just inherently ignorant, but they are also morally unrighteous.  Kant said it best, “From the crooked timber of humanity, no straight thing was ever made.”  This point was also made by Augustine.  He urged his followers not to be duped by infants.  The child may look angelic, he writes, but consider how shrill, irrational, and demanding they get when their wishes go unmet.  Babies do not lack the will to do harm, only the strength.  Who will teach them the right way?  Who will civilize them?  There is only one answer:  the family.

The west is now facing a situation termed the “crisis of the family.”  It truly IS a crisis.  Nearly one-third of whites, and more than two-thirds of blacks, are born out of wedlock.  Common sense tells us that it is not a good thing for a child to be raise by a single parent.  These children are far more likely to be poor, undisciplined, unsuccessful at school, and psychologically disadvantaged, compared with children from two-parent homes.

What has caused this crisis?  Are things improving or getting worse?

There are essentially three factors responsible for the decline of traditional families.  The first is technological capitalism.  This problem began during the Industrial Revolution because it separated the workplace and the household.  Before this time, most people worked at home!  In Peter Laslett’s book, The World We Have Lost, he shows how the backer, his wife, children, servants, and journeymen all worked, ate, and slept under the same roof.  In a sense, they were all one family.

This arrangement was destroyed by the growth of industry.  The Industrial Revolution took the man out of the home and placed him in the workforce.  We also see the emergence of the wife going into the workforce.  This drastically changed the dynamic of the home.

The second area that changed the traditional family is the way in which Capitalism as a system has produced affluence.  Tom Brokaw’s book The Greatest Generation celebrates the virtues of the generation that grew up in the 1930’s and came of age in the 1950’s.  Certainly the 1950’s were a happy decade, one in which America managed to combine prosperity and moral decency.  Families remained intact, communities were cohesive, and people borrowed sugar from their neighbors.  Many refer to this era as a near-perfect past.  In fact many would love nothing better than to “go back to the fifties.”

This was of thinking is actually short-sighted.  What actually made this generation so great?  There are two obvious answers:  The Great Depression and World War II.  The virtues of the greatest generation were the product of scarcity and war; need and hardship produced the admirable courage, sacrifice, and solidarity of the greatest generation.  Why you ask did this generation fail?  Well, it failed to replicate itself.

Affluence is the reason why.

The parents from the greatest generation wanted their children to have all the things they didn’t have.  This has a moral downside.  In giving their children everything, the frugal, self disciplined, sacrificial generation of WWII produced the Clinton generation.  Not a surprise, but this generation did not value the same things their parents did!  They were raised under “ideal” and different conditions.

In a capitalist society, people move where the jobs and the economic growth is.  This disperses family.  In the United States for example, it is quite rare to find dozens of relatives living within a two mile radius.  IN other countries, specifically those in Eastern lands, this isn’t so.  In our country, in the American system—we send our children away to college with the likely consequence that they will never return home to live and may well end up in another part of the country.  This would be considered odd in other cultures.

The final and most destructive force on the traditional family has been the welfare state.  In Dinesh D’Souza’s book, Letters to a Young Conservative, he says that an African American friend of his told him that, “The welfare state did to the family what even slavery could not do.”  I thought this was a joke.  There is extensive literature on the horrific consequences of slavery, and how bad its effect was on the black family.  Under slavery, masters could break up families, sell off children, and so on.  No slave state permitted slaves to marry legally.  All this is depressingly true.

Yet even so, as the work of Herberet Gutman and others shows, African Americans during slavery struggled against pressure to keep their families together.  After emancipation, they had to go to great lengths to reassemble their families.  For the next hundred y ears, from 1865 to 1965, the illegitimacy rate for blacks never exceeded 25 percent.  This is a tribute to the pro-family values of American blacks.

Since 1965, however, the black illegitimacy rate has soared to 70 percent.  Whatever has caused this change, it was not slavery.  Scholars continue to debate how such deterioration could occur so rapidly.  This collapse came with the passage of the civil rights laws, with an expanding welfare state, and with affirmative action.  The liberals were puzzled.  Then in 1980, Charles Murray published Losing Ground.   He explained that it was not anomalous to see family breakdown in the era of the welfare state since welfare-state policies were responsible for this breakdown.

How?  One of the fundamental principles of economics is that when you subsidize something, you get more of it.  For more than a generation, American welfare policies subsidized illegitimacy and thus America got more of it.  This was primarily aimed only to help widows and orphans.  However, under the non judgmental logic of modern liberalism, the criteria were expanded and changed so that every illegitimate child resulted in a cash payment by the government to the mother of that child.  The more illegitimate children a mother had, the more money the government awarded her.

A more perverse policy could be scarcely imagined, as Murray showed, but liberals continued to resist welfare reform.

There is one final contributing factor that will lead us to another blog post.  This is the issue of moral relativism.  Conservatives have focused on welfare as a prime culprit in family deterioration, but we should note that government failure is not the lone culprit.  It is also the product of the cast social and moral changes that have occurred across the spectrum of society.  This is a moral revolution.

America and the West have embraced a moral revolution since the 1960’s. Based in the teachings of Rousseau, most Americans have left the ideology that an external moral order in the universe makes claims on us.  Instead people see a morality of the inner self.  “I may not be able to figure out what is right and wrong, but I can dig deep within myself and figure out what is right and wrong for ME!”

Irving Kristol once quipped that “America does not have a single moral problem that another Great Depression would not cure.”  This is probably true, but who wants to endure another great depression in order to fix our country?  Rather, the preferred outcome, it seems to me, is to restore old values under new conditions.

Real Liberal Arts Education.

Here is how professors at liberal arts institutions alter the minds of young students for the worse:  Consider the freshman who goes to a faculty party and strikes up a conversation saying that he is “concerned about “the Communist plot in Nicaragua.”  What do you think the faculty member does?  Do they argue with him?  Do they seek to show that the Sandinistas aren’t Marxist?  On the contrary.  Instead, they make him to feel stupid.  They turn their noses into the air and give the student a look as if to imply, “Where are you from, Oklahoma?”

The student gets humiliated.  This is his first social gaffe.

This is the beginning of his education.  In time he learns.  By the time his senior year rolls around he is gaining massive amounts of respect from his professors by going on about “the rising tide of fundamentalism and homophobia that is engulfing our society.”

SAD.  I’ve seen it first hand.

A Real Education Through Reading. (the right books)

A good liberal arts education should produce graduates that are well equipped to function in society.  The further aim of a liberal arts institution is to produce graduates that are open-minded.  However, today’s educators do not see this as a goal.  They are not assigning classics to students.  Why would one assign Shakespeare or F. Scott Fitzgerald to a student?  These are dead white guys.  What can they offer?  Instead, we get I, Rigoberta Menchu.  This is a bogus multiculturalism in place of books that truly offer a glimpse into other cultures.   What’s wrong with Othello?  It doesn’t fit the agenda.

Here Are Some Books To Consider:

 

  1. Allan Bloom, The Closing of the American Mind
  2. Patrick Buchanan, Right from the Beginning
  3. Whittaker Chambers, Witness
  4. Dinesh D’Souza, Illiberal Education
  5. Dinesh D’Souza, Letters to a Young Conservative
  6. Dinesh D’Souza, What’s So Great About Christianity?
  7. Alexander De Tocqueville, Democracy in America
  8. Tony Evans, The Kingdom Agenda
  9. Tony Evans, How Should Christians Vote?
  10. Tony Evans, The Kingdom Man
  11. Tony Evans, No More Excuses
  12. Tony Evans, Oneness Embraced:  Racial Reconciliation Through the Eyes of Tony Evans
  13. George Gilder, Men and Marriage
  14. Milton Friedman, Capitalism and Freedom
  15. Hamilton, Madison, Jay, The Federalist Papers
  16. Friedrich Hayek, The Road to Serfdom
  17. Paul Hollander, Political Pilgrims
  18. Harry Jaffa, The Crisis of the House Divided
  19. Russsell Kirk, The Conservative Mind
  20. Irving Kristol, Neoconservatism
  21. Peter Laslett, The World We Have Lost
  22. Ludwig von Mises, Human Action
  23. Margaret Mead, Male and Female
  24. Charles Murray, Losing Ground
  25. George Nash, The Conservative Intellectual Movement
  26. Peggy Noonan, What I Saw at the Revolution
  27. George Orwell,  Animal Farm
  28. George Orwell, 1984
  29. Alexander Solzhenitsyn , One Day in the Life of Ivan Denisovich
  30. Thomas Sowell, The Thomas Sowell Reader
  31. Thomas Sowell, Intellectuals and Society
  32. Walter E. Williams, Race and Economics
  33. Walter E. Williams, Liberty Versus the Tyranny of Socialism
  34. Walter E. Williams, More Liberty Means Less Government:  Our Founders Knew This Well
  35. Tom Wolf, The Right Stuff
  36. Ravi Zacharias, Jesus Among Other Gods
  37. Ravi Zacharias, Beyond Reason
  38. Ravi Zacharias, The End of Reason (A Response To the New Atheists)

What’s So Great About Atheistic Education? NOTHING.

Dinesh D’Souza has some great things to say in his book What’s So Great About Christianity concerning the atheists and their strategy to re-educate your children with their philosophies based on Hume, Nietzsche  Freud, and Darwinian thought.  I thought I would share with you some of his key arguments.  Ever wonder exactly how the atheists and secularists are infiltrating the minds of our young people?  Well, the new breed of skeptics are evangelistic.  They aren’t content to keep their disbelief to themselves, in fact; “Let the religious people breed them, we will re-educate them” could be their creed if they believed in creeds.

Richard Dawkins, one of the preeminent atheists, and British biologist asks, “How much do we regard children as being the property of their parents?  It’s one thing to say people should be free to believe whatever they like, but should they be free to impose their beliefs on their children?  Is there something to be said for society stepping in?  Isn’t it always a form of child abuse to label children as possessors of beliefs that they are too young to have thought out?”—he says this, but also offers a new set of DVD’s titled Growing Up in the Universe, based on his Royal Institution Christmas Lectures for children!!  THIS IS THE KIND OF THING YOU GET WHEN YOU LET A BIOLOGIST OUT OF A LAB, AND ALLOW HIM TO MAKE COMMENTS.

Consider Philosopher Richard Rorty who argued that secular professors at universities ought “to arrange things so that students who enter as bigoted, homophobic religious fundamentalists will leave college with views more like our own.”  Rorty noted that students are fortunate to find themselves “under the benevolent Herrschaft of people like me, and to have escaped the grip of their frightening, vicious, dangerous parents.”  Indeed, parents who send their children to college should recognize that as professors “we are going to go right on trying to discredit you in the eyes of your children, trying to strip your fundamentalist religious community of dignity, trying to make your views seem silly rather than discussable.”

What is this strategy?  It is to subject them to such scorn that their views are pushed outside of the bounds of acceptable “debate.”  This strategy is effective because young people who go to good colleges are extremely eager to learn what it means to be an educated Harvard man or Stanford woman.  Consequently their teachers can very easily steer them to think a certain way merely by making that point of view seem fashionable and enlightened.  Similarly, teachers can pressure students to abandon what their parents taught them simply by labeling those positions simplistic and unsophisticated.

Isn’t it wonderful that educators have figured out a way to make parents the instrument of their own undoing?  Isn’t it brilliant that they have persuaded Christian moms and dads to finance the destruction of their own beliefs and values?  Who said atheists weren’t clever?

All quotes taken from:

D’Souza, Dinesh, What’s So Great About Christianity, Tyndale House Publishers, Illinois, 2007.