CULTURE WARS; an observation


The line in the sand is drawn. It crosses the Potomac, the 49th parallel, stretching from sea to shining sea. Between the two great oceans is the even greater divide; the cultural grand canyon.

Or so some would have you and I believe, we must be red or blue with no white in-between. But how has this nation of “We the People” become the nation of us against them?

Some might say the south has finally won the civil war, the war of succession, and we are now witnessing the wedged-off amputations of the one nation, the one government, in favor of feudal warlord domains. Still others see new aristocracies overcoming democracy with policies favoring inevitable global corporate hegemony. Where we begin to sculpt our lives with product or thing associations. What is more important to us is what brand of car we own, our brand of watch, brand of God, oven, or income level that allows the upgrades to occur.

I hate being the bearer of bad news to the cultural war mongers during this campaign season, but in most respects, them is us. The conservative tendency to suppress humanity so others can be treated totally like we would not ever wish ourselves to be treated, is a tendency we must all interact with within ourselves. And the liberal tendency to want all faults to be forgiven that can be traced, by understanding, to the force of outside cause, is a generous tendency we may tend to give mostly to ourselves and perhaps not extend to others, especially acting conservatives.

If, as I contend, this great cultural divide actually is in the deepest most honest sense of individual truth, stretching our one foot on the red and the other on the blue, the cultural war that is festering across the nation is a false front designed to tear the individual into halves, deconstructing the noble self, the self of our better angels, into an angry and arrogant self lost from fuller comprehension of itself, searching aimlessly in the mirrored ideology of identity attachments, blaming the “other side” for perhaps subconsciously holding the missing self hostage.

Crazy huh?

I have lost count of the unaccountability of self professed conservatives being found out as being pedophiles, predators and or misleaders of some nature. I have lost count of the number of liberals who seem to have no particular guide as to what they believe in except that they know conservatives to be wrong, or enjoy some unbridled liberties.

But basically, both of my pigeonholed concepts of liberal and conservative are incomplete, for every human being applies both tendencies daily to live their lives. It is the nature of the polarizer that must be examined; why do some surely wish to divide up the “We the People” in the national collective mindset? Who is pursuing this divide and conquer strategy and to what ends? I will leave that speculation for now, since it would easily delve into areas of belief where facts themselves have been rendered questionable to anyone’s interpretation. When I am kept unknowing of something, how can I truthfully asses its effects, or even its existence necessarily?

Of this speculation, I am quite confident of its existence, though the details may be completely of a differing narrative of individuals, times and place.

Today, somewhere, there will be a child who gives thanks that their parent took them aside and showed they cared enough to lay down trustworthy directions to live by. Finally, finally! It will seem as if someone surely does intend the best for them by being a guide to the ways of life they are blinded to by youth and inexperience.

In another place an infant will have their emotional umbilical cord cut. Parents will allow the child to discover their own self regulation by weaning them from repetitive loop reinforced insecurity, proving they have a safe place to begin to satisfy their own needs. From this position of respect for the parents own emotional well being, the nights of a baby crying will stop, the raw nerves of the parents will be soothed, their relationship repaired. Now the infant, unable to speak, will wake in the night, reach out to pull the covers back on, succeeding at something she was not allowed to know she could accomplish before except by complaining. Even infants can learn what they can do when allowed to in a protective and supportive way.

And then in another place, an old conservative white guy will have an accident in the wrong neighborhood on an icy night. What looks like a thug will run over to the car, pull him and his granddaughter away from the car. Remove his own coat to cover the child, and call 9-11 on the cell phone.

The befuddled white man will be blind sided, (by his new-found other half) dropping to his knees. His own shame will be consumed before himself. His eyes will light up with fire and water, his heart seeming to grow a new, or is that a missing chamber? He will wonder in the falling snow, what else has he been wrong about? What other assumptions of mass misunderstandings does he hold as truth, that this once assumed looser is now a saving angel of grace? Suddenly the whole world seems new and beautiful to him, especially that stranger who now seems a most vital part of him.

These things will also occur in their quite places, away from the limelight. They will not be discussed on ideological talk-news propaganda shows filled with their crosses and spikes and crowns of thorns. Yet every moment this season, in the seemingly random chaos of kindness, a higher order of union will come to be.

44″They also will answer, ‘Lord, when did we see you hungry or thirsty or a stranger or needing clothes or sick or in prison, and did not help you?’

45″He will reply, ‘I tell you the truth, whatever you did not do for one of the least of these, you did not do for me.’

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