Woe to those who call evil good and good evil, who put darkness for light and light for darkness, who put bitter for sweet and sweet for bitter. – Isaiah 5:20
* * * * *
In Small And In Large
It is my habit to avoid discussion of personal matters in public, but I will make an exception when the event ties in to a broader matter.
This Sunday the scoutmaster of my sons’ Boy Scout Troop arrived unexpectedly and uninvited on the doorstep of my house, while I was at Mass.
He announced that, due to an anonymous complaint that my youngest son had allegedly made an “anti-Muslim remark” in a private conversation, therefore he and his brother were forthwith expelled from the troop.
To be sure, this was not the only reason given. It was merely the cherry on top. This issue is more complex than the thumbnail I give here, but those nuances are nothing to the point of the example.
When he heard the decree, my son sat on the couch with a look on his face as if he had been shot in the guts.
He had been in this troop for as long as his boyhood memory reaches, has reached the rank of Star and is about to reach Life, and is a patrol leader, or was.
This troop was a big part of our lives. Weekly meetings and monthly hikes and campouts, and yearly camporees have been woven into our schedules since Cub Scouts. The grown ups in the family have spent more hours and weekends lending a hand and helping to sell popcorn than I can calculate. My wife is more active by far than I, and has even earned her Woodbadge, which is an advanced, national leadership program that gobbled up an unfortunate amount of her writing and editing time.
The loyalty and longsuffering support of the Wright family for this troop, which has been a part of all our lives for years, suddenly counted for nothing. We dared speak a word that might offend the Prophet of Submission, peace be upon him. The Blasphemy Laws were breached!
Apparently the decision to expel was made by the pastor of the church sponsoring the troop, even though, technically, it was not his decision to make. I say apparently, because there was no conversation, and no one asked my son for his side of the story.
For the same reason, what precisely the comment was, or who overheard it, I do not know. I suspect my boy was repeating one of his father’s opinions, which can be called “Anti-Muslim” only in the Alice-Through-the-Looking-Glass world of the Left.
The comment, if it was what I suspect, was something to the effect that America liberty is superior to and incompatible with Shariah Law, and that Christian duty of loving the enemy is superior to and incompatible with Jihadist duty to commit suicide during the mass-murder of innocent women and children dishonorably and indiscriminately, without warning, from ambush.
Be that as it may: a day later we have found another scout troop, and all is once again well in the Wright household.
The hardest part for me will be uprooting my uncouth and unchristian ire at this petty injustice, a harm from which I failed to shield my boys. Forgiveness is a duty, which I hope writing this column will encourage rather than prevent.
I am not writing to provoke sympathy or gather supportive comments, but to make an observation backed by the poignancy of an immediate personal experience.
When I was an atheist, no ambush by backstabbers happened to me, neither in my personal nor professional life. The moment I converted to Christianity, within minutes of my answering a question about my faith posed by a highschool newspaper reporter, I earned the enmity of relatives and strangers.
Editors and publishers who had hitherto been willing to publish my work, and readers who had been hitherto willing to vote awards for my work, suddenly denounced me with a fury unrelated to reality. International newspapers were eager to dunk my name in calumny, and facts be damned. No accusation was too untrue or too absurd to level against a man who dared be Christian and take the faith seriously.
But I had been warned by Christ’s own words that the world would hate me for His sake, so I express no surprise. I knew before I signed up what I was signing up for.
Since I was the same person before and after conversion, one can conclude with the precision of a scientific experiment what provokes the hellish ire and reckless slander.
It is not me they hate, or, at least, not me for my own sake. It is Christ. I am not their judge. I have no authority over them. I cannot shed the unwelcome light to make them see their own corruption. He is. He has. He can.
Hence, I cannot take offense with them for my sake, since I am not the offended party. Christ is the one they slander, mock, flog, scorn, stab and crucify. He prays to the Father that they be forgiven. They know not what they do.
Such love is beyond my comprehension. A deep mystery is here.
My observation is that these are not bad people. They are good people deceived and controlled by bad ideas. I am tempted to say possessed by bad ideas, or, rather, by a bad spirit. Such is the spirit of the age. It devolves them into Morlocks and Eloi: but their blood is still human.
From my youth up, I have always been phlegmatically indifferent to the opinions of those whose opinions are based on neurotic emotion, because such opinions are without merit. From my point of view, if Tor Books wishes to insult my readers, or World Con voters wish to vote my works under ‘No Award’, their reputations are harmed, not mine. I continue as before.
In such a case, forgiveness is logical and necessary: the hatred harms only the hater, who inner darkness and unreason is exposed to the candid eye of man and angel alike.
But my son is not prepared for betrayal by people, such as Christian pastors, such as his own scoutmaster, whom I taught him to trust, respect and obey.
The world where chaplains will denounce you for being Christian, or Boy Scouts will expel you for being patriotic, is a new world to him.
When a Leftist Christian has to decide between Leftism and the teachings of Christ, he goes Left. When a Leftist Scout has to decide between Leftism and the teachings of Robert Baden Powell, he goes Left. Leftist put Leftism before all other loyalties.
Perhaps the lesson with toughen his spirit.
The lesson may be useful for my friends and readers as well:
The corruption is everywhere. To judge from their acts rather than their words, the corrupt wish not only to cow you into silence, dear reader, they wish to rob your children of innocent happiness.
In the broader picture, protests against Sharia Law were organized across the country this weekend, and community organizers on the Left gathered against them, not without violence, to silence this defense of Constitutional liberties and Angloamerican Common Law.
The countermarch by homosexuals and lesbians heckling and rioting in favor of the barbaric laws of Mohammed, which, if enacted here as they are abroad, would execute or mutilate the coutermarchers, or reduce them to chattel dressed in garbage bags, is an irony only a psychopathologist can explain, or perhaps an exorcist.
In the Looking-Glass world, no pastor stands up for Christ, nor do Boy Scouts stand up for Scouting.
We are not dealing with a political movement. A political movement would be satisfied with political power.
Whether the enemy’s rank and file are knowingly hypocritical or unknowingly, only mindreader could know. Such nuances of guilt or mitigation are not for us to judge.
All an outside observer can tell is that their words are always, always, always contrary to their actions.
In the name of liberating women, they urge mothers to commit infanticide.
In the name of antifascism, they commit fascism.
In the name of alleviating poverty, they enact minimum wages laws to increase unemployment.
In the name of lowering health care costs, they enact rationing which creates shortages which raises costs.
In the name of equality, they enact socialism, erect barbed wire walls, and make whole nations into prison camps.
In the name of safety, they hamper the Second Amendment which makes free men safe.
In the name of liberty, they forever expand the state.
In the name of charity and compassion, they enact socialist death camps the size of nations, and surround who continents with barbed wire.
And so on, and on, and on.
Hypocrisy is the point of Leftism. Cease to wonder how many atrocities of communism or jihadism it will take for the Left to wake up and realize who is their true enemy. If they wished to wake up, they would not be Leftists to begin with. Leftism is a sleeping potion, a morphine meant to numb the senses and silence the conscience, so that the soul can die without pain.
How deceived the practitioners of a philosophy of self-deception actually are is a matter beyond human understanding. The Bible tells me that only Christ knows the evil in the hearts of men. The radio tells me The Shadow knows. I am neither.
And what does it matter? A successful self-deception means that a man has sincerely deceived himself, whereas an unsuccessful attempt means he is insincere. But sincerity of motive does not excuse the negligence involved in neglecting one’s duty to be true.
Sincere dishonesty is still dishonest.
The enemy wants control, arbitrary control, over the free expression of ideas in any forum, over the publishing industry, over such trivial matters as toy statues given out as awards at conventions for fans of rocketship stories.
They want control over how female cartoons in computer games are dressed, and they want control over the sex lives of pure imaginary characters from superhero comics.
They have control over the courts, the press, the schools, the entertainment industry, Wall Street. They are rapidly gaining control over the remaining uncorrupted Protestant denominations, over the Orthodox and Catholic Churches.
They want control over the Boy Scouts, and over what opinions a child expresses in private.
Between Christ and Leftism, the war is a religious war, a crusade. The Left is not a political group with political goals, but a Jihad. Their goals are spiritual. Only a Crusader can defeat a Jihadist.
In the same way we Christians want Christ to be in everything we do, in every part of our life, in our work and leisure and even in our casual conversation, we want to add to the glory of our heavenly father, so too in just the same way, the corrupt want every part of your life and work, and every idle word, to add to the corruption and serve it, and to add to the glory of their father, who is the father of lies.
In the same way we wish all souls to be saved and true and joyful, they wish all to be damned and hypocritical and miserable.
Even a little boy is not beyond the view of the unwinking, unsleeping, lidless eyes of the adversary.
Even a little boy is not beyond the view of the unwinking, unsleeping, lidless eyes of the adversary.
From John C. Wright's Blog (June 13, 2017)