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Thursday, April 14, 2005

The idolatry of modern America

Found a VERY good article by Clyde Wilson, a professor of history at University of South Carolina. In "The Cerebral Emperor" Wilson raises a warning against the American people partaking in what could only be described as "worship of government". Here's the part that resonated particularly strongly with me on some things I've been pondering lately...
How did we get to this state of emperor worship—the need to identify with "our" president, as if he were the father of our one big happy family? It would seem that for millions of Americans now, to criticize "our president" is to commit treason against what they imagine to be a family. Well, the President is not "my president." He is a rather mediocre and troublesome man who has acheived temporary (let us hope) power through a corrupt and irrational process that required of him neither an admirable character nor proven services to the country. The President is most certainly not "my commander-in-chief." He is merely during his term of office head of the Armed Forces established by law—that is, he has the responsibility for directing their operations. He is not commander-in-chief of the United States. Constitutionally considered he is not even commander-in-chief of the federal government, which was supposed to be a government of divided powers.
Now, I defy anyone to point out the fallacy of the above paragraph. 'Cuz when you study the traditional, historical role of ANY elected officials in America, you CAN'T find it anywhere that they're supposed to be a sovereign lord or king over us. And yet, we act as if they are just that...

Not long ago I wrote that there are three kinds of people in this world: those that want to control others, those that WANT to be controlled, and those (like me) that are OUT of control. Now, why is that? I think it has to do with the things we cherish and value most during our life on this Earth. It further goes on to define how confident we are as individuals.

Some of us want freedom... I mean real freedom. We don't want there to be any guarantees of life: just an honest shot at making it on our own with whatever God has given us to work with. I like to think that we do put our confidence both in ourselves and in God.

Then there are those who want power, obviously. Ultimately these people have NO confidence in God whatsoever, so they put their confidence in the accumulation of material wealth and affluence. It's NOT enough for them to simply play with whatever cards life deals them: they want to stack the deck in their own favor... because they're afraid to let ANYTHING or ANYONE bring uncertainties to the table that they're not prepared to deal with in their own minds.

And then there are those who lack just as much confidence as the second group, but they're even more pathetic.... because they put their confidence in those who place their OWN confidence in power and control.

That's what most of the American people - and maybe most people in this world - are: they've been made too afraid to take the reins on their own. They think they cannot have the wisdom or power... so they're expected to yield their lives over to those we are supposed to believe have been blessed by God with all the wisdom, and power, and right to govern as THEY see fit.

I think it's fair to say that most Americans really are slaves: in thought if not in flesh. I mean, at least consider why it is that most of us are INCAPABLE of comprehending anything politically without it being defined by the Democrats and Republicans. Who gave them the keys to our minds?

Come to think of it, who the HELL are both major parties to believe that they have sovereignty over the American people at all?! I sure as hell didn't put them in charge of my life... did you?!

The modern American is more a slave than any ancestor of those brethren among us of African descent. I would even dare say that the slaves of antebellum America possessed more strength and freedom than most of us today have ever known: it was not their own doing that their bodies were in bondage. But their minds were their own, and their spirits strong. In every way that really matters in the eternal sense, they were free... because they chose to be free. It's like what Andy said in The Shawshank Redemption: that there's something within each of us that no one can touch or hurt, unless we let them...

Well, most of us not only let them touch us, we willingly accede our souls getting raped without lubricant. For practically every moment of our lives. And that's something that hardly any of our ancestors tolerated or encouraged.

No, it's not freedom or even a sense of control that most Americans want, but security. They don't want the nuisance of having to worry about their own lives. They don't want to have to THINK for themselves... but there's plenty enough folks more than willing to think for them. It doesn't take too much to convince the insecure gullible that the power-mad jackals are trustworthy either: so long as they claim strength in numbers and enough money to buy plenty of airtime, they can get away with any lie, no matter how big... and usually the bigger the lie the easier the masses will swallow it.

Well, like I said before: you can either be controlling, or be controlled. Or you can choose to be out of control, which isn't the easiest thing in the world, because we still have to figure out what we're going to do with everyone else and their insecurities.

Do I have some of my own? Sure do. But I ain't gonna let a government or political party tell me how to handle them.


Anonymous said...

Good one Chris.