Sunday, October 28, 2012

America: Despite Ourselves

A correspondent whom I've known for years wrote this the other day on Facebook.

The election is getting closer, and nerves are getting more frayed. I've been unfriended by a couple of old friends and a cousin (!). One guy I had unfriended kept looking up my posts, and then telling me to "STFU." Had to block him so he wouldn't keep punishing himself. Only a few more days, and the fever will abate -- although if it's anything like last time, liberals will keep howling no matter who wins. I know few truly happy liberals.

I don't believe it was always like this, in which case something has changed. And I have a theory about it.

I submit that the more dependent we have become on government to solve our problems -- that's government at any level; national, state, or local -- the more emotional we become about the direction it takes, as what we have to lose appears to become more precarious. This malaise is not limited to Democrats and liberals. Having worked in Washington for over thirty years, I can assure you that Republicans know how to blow a wad of your money just as easily as those Democrats they would castigate for the same.

The last four years have been even worse, with a President who has pitted one class of people against another, to such an extent as to provoke no less than Camille Pagila:

I was very excited about [President Obama]. I thought he was a moderate. I thought that his election would promote racial healing in the country ... It would be a tremendous transformation of attitudes. And instead: one thing after another. Not least: I consider him, now, one of the most racially divisive and polarizing figures ever. I think it's going to take years to undo the damage to relationships between the races.

Maybe that's why a recent study has shown that a slightly higher percentage of people are racist in 2012 than they were in 2008. The Catechism of the Catholic Church says that ...

The Antichrist's deception already begins to take shape in the world every time the claim is made to realize within history that messianic hope which can only be realized beyond history through the eschatological judgment. The Church has rejected even modified forms of this falsification of the kingdom to come under the name of millenarianism, especially the "intrinsically perverse" political form of a secular messianism. (#676)

So then, what we refer to as "the spirit of the Antichrist" is manifested in any ideology that claims to solve all humanity's problems. The point here is not that the current President is the Antichrist, so much as that his cult of personality may be construed as a sign thereof. There is a world of difference. As a man, Barack Hussein Obama is neither beyond redemption, nor unworthy of our prayers. If one is to apply one's faith in the ballot box, especially for the upcoming election, it might include that sentiment, don't you think?

Or don't you?

(H/T to John Hathaway and Terrye Newkirk.)

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