Just look at that promotional banner. True, it could be an editorial or opinion piece instead of an actual news article. I don't know. It's becoming more and more difficult to tell the difference. My limit for the month was exceeded, so I can't be sure what type of piece it is. But in looking at its promotional headline for BLM, something dawned on me. I realized that in almost a year, the national press has yet to report on Black Lives Matter.
Promote, advocate, endorse, and rally for BLM, yes. It's done that in spades. But actually report, investigate, analyze? Not even close. I attended high school pep rallies that were more objective than the "reporting" done regarding BLM. For a year the national press, the international press, and hence the international community, has proclaimed BLM to be the gospel incarnate, with only one possible response: complete acceptance and support. Or else.
And then I realized that's how liberalism wins. Conservatives often believe they are right and others are wrong. Liberals, on the other hand, know they are right and anyone daring to challenge that fact is Nazi. That's a powerful rhetorical tool, to wade into a topic with the assurance that you incarnate the scientifically indisputable God-truth of salvation and moral infallibility. And yet they do, and conservatives typically wither and crumble before the assault.
Or conservative immediately find themselves on the defensive, beginning every response with 'now I'm not a homophobe, or I don't hate Asians, or I was appalled at George Floyd's death' or whatever. Already they've done just what the liberal argument demands - accept the liberal premises.
Sometimes conservatives will accept certain parts of the premise and the narrative as well. Of course racism defines America, we admit America was a racist nation, naturally the West was enmeshed in genocide and racism, yes Christians have brutally persecuted homosexuals, of course even the Bible was awash in sexism and discrimination. Naturally no slaves ever suffered like slaves in America. Yes, every plantation was a death camp and every cotton field a gas chamber. This is sometimes done by conservatives of different stripes who can score points against those other conservatives. Catholics, for instance, love to trot out America as anti-Immigrant racist state when it comes to Americans opposing old immigration from Catholic countries, for instance.
And speaking of those other conservatives, sometimes conservatives try the old 'not me' approach, beginning a topic with 'sure some conservatives are racist, misogynists, homophobic bigot Neanderthals', but they certainly aren't. Again, scoring a half dozen victory points to the liberal narrative and its assumptions before taking their next breath. When was the last time you ever heard a progressive or liberal begin a debate this way? All of which helps establish the first part of any conversation as affirming the truth and credibility of the very liberal agendas and arguments those conservatives wish to dispel.
So it's a powerful thing, dogmatic self-affirmation. And that's what liberalism does, in all of its institutional forms. My sons noticed that when thinking about Orthodoxy this year. We were remembering the times during our sojourn with the Orthodox. Some day I will have to spell out just why we returned. There were, after all, many things I found commendable within Orthodox circles.
One has been their insistence on trying to retain a certain 'Christian cultural discourse.' That is, trying to keep conversations and basic interactions on a level that one may have encountered all over Christendom centuries ago.
One thing that they do, for instance, at least in church, is to always great each other with variations of 'Christ is risen', to be followed by 'Truly He is risen.' The wording changes depending on the season, and always with variations through the season of Pascha. But we had to get used to fact that they don't just say, "hi Dave', they say, depending on time of year, "Christ is Risen!" After a bit of time, it got easy to respond accordingly.
Well, my boys noticed that in their college culture today, that is how most of these issues are addressed. In most cases, that is how various movements or topics or activism is spoken of, like a dogmatic greeting. Thus when a student says Black Lives Matter, it is not open for debate, any more than Christ is Risen is supposed to begin a theological discussion. It is a statement of faith, of unwavering, indisputable, non-negotiable faith. Black Lives Matter! Truly Black Lives Matter.
That's that. That's how you respond. You don't say 'Gee, while I agree with that sentiment, I...' Stop! The moment, the second, you don't respond with appropriate dogmatic utterances, you are now the enemy. You've exposed your racism, your heresy, your blasphemy. You are now a threat. You are hate, and are embarking on violence against salvation and sanctification through the Left. To do anything other than respond with 'Truly Black Lives Matter', or similar responses to #MeToo, Stand With Asians, Fight White Privilege, End Systemic Racism, Stop Global Warming or any one of a dozen similar slogans, makes you the enemy. Period. End of statement. The conversation is over, and the liberal in question now ponders if he should walk away, or are you now a threat needing put in your place.
And that's powerful. That sort of zeal and fanaticism will always beat out the person wading into a debate with 'I'm sure I've been wrong before, but perhaps we can come to an agreement.' It came to this in our society today because the press, educators and intellectuals, celebrities and corporate leaders all embraced the same agendas, making such religious faith statements the cultural ocean in which younger generations swim, to paraphrase Peggy Noonan. It's been that way for several years, so the kids my sons' age have no way of imagining that there could possibly be another way of seeing things than the way the Left, with its monopoly of our nation's power cells, have proclaimed.
That is why to question white privilege, America as a nation founded on genocide, racism and slavery, to think boys and girls physically exist, to imagine marriage between a man and a woman, and on and on, would be like hearing someone say 'Remember Pearl Harbor' and responding with 'What about Pearl Harbor?' if you lived in 1941. It's well beyond the younger generation's ability to fathom that there could be anything other than their statements of faith. Any more than this NYT headline, or any other article today, has any hope of imagining the leftwing activism it is promoting is anything other than gospel truth.