The New Tyranny
Society has degenerated into such an irrational and antediluvian orgy that one is forced to say things they would rather not. To criticize the sacredness of the individual is to criticize the very essence of the western world. Naturally, cries of “fascist” and various other now meaningless slogans are hurled upon anyone who points out that an entire society is now under the oppression of individual identity politics. Further, anyone who dares to suggest that, instead of protecting rights, the government and its media apparatus have now become a platform by which a single individual can exert such force on an entire culture that the very columns that support it have begun to crumble is lambasted in every way conceivable. This is precisely what I intend to do here.
I recently learned that the only opinion that matters is that every opinion matters. I have always been aware of this sentiment’s existence, as it made the rounds of the various discussions that are undertaken while intoxicated and feelings of fraternal love are extended to every imaginable stupidity; but I was unaware that this maxim holds true outside the bounds of the acute effects of youthful rebellion. How naive and stupid I surely am.
Feeling, emotion, and opinion, the halt and the lame, have excoriated ethical issues. To be more precise, there are no longer ethical or moral issues. When the right to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness is cynically translated into the right to say, do anything, and act as selfishly and outlandishly as one wishes, rights begin to act as corrosive acids on formerly moral imperatives. The very organic institutions and sentiments that keep society a civilized arena are inverted and found to be “backwards” and illiberal. We hear a lot about the Golden rule, like Justice, but it is a meaningless term while in the possession of a society that no longer believes that these items have any meaning outside of the rush to utilize them to redress every perceived wrong; and the right, the correct, the positive, is neutered to include only that which has this aim in mind. The right thing is now everything, and the wrong thing is to prohibit anything. Further, the categories of right and wrong are accepted so long as they are empty. That humans have the faculties to conceptualize the good and the bad, the right and the wrong, the righteous and the unrighteous, is taken as true; but what is right and wrong has been totally lost, and is now totally irrelevant.
Subsequently, the idea of human rights has been so thoroughly mangled that any grievance — opinion — that can be conceived can be interpreted as a violation of a persons human rights. Individuals being denied free contraception or healthcare, or prohibited from certain recreational activities, to the state not recognizing gay marriage, are all considered an affront on the equality of individuals that was enumerated in the Declaration of Independence. That all men are created equal, just so; that all ideas, institutions, dispositions and behaviors are created equal, not so. There is no equivalence, for lack of a better term, between “created” equal and being behaviorally or sentimentally equal. For the sentiment “men are not created equal” will be just as valid in that schema. That some men find life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness by exploiting women and selling drugs should not be assessed as the rights associated with being “created equal.” And if history teaches us anything, it teaches us that once the line which separates rights and ethics is erased society tends towards stasis, and if not stasis, decline.
This is elementary, the idea that all men are “created equal”, that they are created at all, and endowed with the right to life, immediately precludes the validity of any ideas maintaining that they are not. The attempts to get around this linguistic and logical problem are seen most viscerally while gazing upon feminists attempting to redefine humanness in order to continue their pogrom against the unborn. It can also be found among the community of bio-ethicists, a contradiction in terms if not conclusions, who are dertermined to reduce human beings to certain cognitive attributes; and if these attributes are not properly exhibited, to the gas chamber they can readily go. With the onslaught of modern scientific barbarity, the Declaration and Constitution have failed to protect the rights of the most vulnerable members of our society. This should not be hailed as a great American success story.
The most egregious part of this modern societal tendency is that we demote our sacred status to secure temporal rights, or a utilitarian ethic in the above case. Additionally, the right to choice, the right to kill, is protected vociferously mostly because the people concerned more so with the womb than with what it contains are, by definition, more vocal, and can scream louder, than those they seek to destroy. Of the the trinity — life, liberty, happiness — liberty and happiness have consumed life in an atrocious dialectic of post-modern nihilism.
The tyranny of the individual is revealed during the course of this consumptive progression as one person, or opinion on identity, can easily force an entire community to acquiesce to its demands. Women have the right to terminate a pregnancy at any moment for any reason, because that’s their opinion, whether due to economic constraints, or that they just don’t want a child, and to attack the opinion is to attack the right, those that disagree are termed fascist or worse. A “war on women” that never existed is created, and the battle-lines are drawn upon the corpses of those who die or never lived so that the right to choice can consume the right to life. It is not by accident that, of the Trinity, the right to “life” is demanded first. And it is not by accident that this is the first to be targeted.
Switching gears from the profane to the idiotic, that minorities might be underrepresented in the sciences is no longer an issue due to minority malfeasance and general cultural rapacity, but has become something that the sciences need to fix themselves. That an entire generation of youth has been taught that the thug life is more glamorous than the reflective life, and that shiny chains that resemble my trout fishing lures are more pleasing to the aesthetic sense than the drab appearance of the lab coat, is forgotten or lost in the “courageous” conversations we are supposed to be having about race. That the constitution protects individuals from government abuses and nothing else is waxing anachronistic as the rush to diversify the population according to skin color, gender, and sexuality is considered the ultimate and only goal of its establishment.
While the more dermal aspects of diversity are on flagrant display from the campus, the office, to the oval office, the real and pertinent aspects of intellectual diversity are inverted. Again, opinions are sacred over reason, and reason is tossed to the dustbin. The feminist writer Julia Kristeva’s ideas on the origin of Jewish dietary law as being a Freudian reaction to the abject are more important because they are feminist opinions, and not the erudition of the male rabbinical sages. A faculty that represents the cross-section of the world is a more important employment consideration than whether or not they can accurately present information. A mediocre graduate student of color is more cherished than the next Einstein; and in many instances the intellectual emptiness of the women’s, black, and ethnic studies programs are considered more important and beneficial to society than a decent engineer working on new advances in oil drilling.
Moving from the merit based activities of society back to the cultural, we find a continued and similar dimness. The first blow against marriage as a religious institution was the creation of the no-fault divorce, a situation where people that were merely unhappy could now divorce and leave their families without any reason, constituting another example of liberty and happiness consuming life and responsibility. The second was the intermingling of the state as it relates to taxes. The absurdity and statist tone here is undeniable. And the third has been the reduction of its now meaningless definition to include any imaginable pairing.
While the debate about same sex marriage rages, nobody has noticed that we aren’t actually arguing about marriage. Marriage is as much a bureaucratic and political money grab as it is a meaningful cultural arrangement. And any attempt to rescue it by reaffirming its cultural definition as being between a man and a women will be met with cries that homosexuals will not be permitted the same tax breaks as the heterosexuals. We aren’t arguing about rights, we are arguing about whether we can pair up in order to accumulate certain tax breaks.
The whole argument is predicated on the fact that the secular government has taxed us to the point where marriage is as much a business decision as it is an emotional one. That the government has involved itself in a religious arrangement gave rise to its eventual destruction. If it had remained a religious institution rather than economic one, the ideas of rights being associated with it would have never emerged. Some denominations may have found it acceptable to marry same-sex couples, others no. Either way it would barely be an issue.
Now the whole society is at the mercy of those few who demand that the entire community, all 350 million of us, recognize same sex marriage as being as legitimate as its traditional formulation. The government has succeeded in stripping marriage of its religious subtext, monetizing it, and will now force its destruction based on specious claims to rights. The legitimization and “legalization” of same sex marriage will not be a victory for human rights. Rather, it will be an incredible example of the government’s abuse of cultural institutions over the last 50 years.
To conclude, the founding fathers of the United States of America could not have predicted any of the following situations. For if they had, they would have been much more explicit in their definitions of liberty and happiness. They could not have foreseen an America so removed from its original ethical, cultural, and religious principles that the the individual would be able to exert so much influence over the whole as to turn the country into a mediocre and intellectually homogeneous smear. That many of them foresaw the liberation of the slaves, and the war that emancipation would necessitate, should be taken as a sign of their prescience. However, they were ill equipped to see the advances that science and technology would make and the accompaniment of abuses that these advances have entailed. Ripping a baby from a womb and extracting its brains for no other reason than it is unwanted was unthinkable during their historic moment. Many of them believed that we had advanced beyond the point of the blatant infanticide of the spartan polity and the pornographic and lustful festivities of the Roman pagans, and that human progress dictated that we never return to that horrible moment in human history.
The intellectuals of that time truly believed that reason, and reason alone, without axioms, could perfect human beings. An example of this hubris is the fact that the original draft of the Declaration of Independence was changed from “we hold these truths to be sacred and undeniable” to “self-evident.” But in our modern society, which can’t even agree on what is evident, much less self– evident, we are lost to the tyranny of individual subjective desires and fantasies, and the rotten fruit which it bears.
A polity in which every opinion matters because its only opinions which are sacred, and only subjective grievances are seen as valid, which require the compensation and indemnity of the entire society, nothing can advance but an equalizing and leveling malaise. Screams outwitting reason, society becomes a battered ship with no sails and no rudder, destined to aimlessly wander the saline meniscus until succumbing, finally, with a last gasp of emotional rapture, like the creaks of imploding bulkheads and hulls, to the depths of the shallows.