*This review includes spoilers of Avengers: Endgame.
Braveheart, Mel Gisbon, 1995.
On May 8th of last year I wrote how the entertainment industry has an obsession with WWII parallels, most notable in the mass destruction from technology and the existence of ill will in the world. We saw this phenomenon in Tolkien’s LOTR becoming a Peter Jackson film trilogy that builds up to a falling action like Mel Gibson’s “Braveheart” (1995) effect of massive armies attacking each other, as seen in “Return of The King” (2003). Yet before had come similar images in Star Wars Episode II had massive battles in “Attack of the Clones” (2002) an excuse for drones to march to the death of the jedi and films like “The Mummy”(1999) that resurrected ancient armies in the Egyptian dessert. A film titled, “Kingdom of Heaven” (2005) also came along to portray the Crusades fighting over Jerusalem. More politically domestic in portrayal was “Avatar” (2009) arrived from a point of view showing the foreign industrialization on the environment against the benefit of a native tribe by James Cameron. Not to neglect the second wave of The Deathly Hallows (2011) to cap off the Harry Potter series in the ultimate facedown.
Last week the final saga film of Marvel’s “Avengers, End Game” became the first film to reach over a billion dollars in profit in the debut of it’s release, and joined the litany of films that are known for notorious battle scenes. In June of last year, I wrote on how our Western cultures appetite for distraction seems to be insatiable.
Chris Hemsworth as Thor.
If people did not go just for the epic battle scene, what messages could be taken away from the film? The writers were trying to say in lines like the character Frigga (Rene Russo) “Everyone fails at who they are supposed to be Thor, all that matters is succeeding in who you really are.” Followed by a line from Thor (Chris Hemsworth) himself when asked about returning home to be king in Asgard, “Maybe it’s time I stopped being who I’m supposed to be, and just be who I really am.” While Carl Jung and Thomas Merton would interpret these writers to have meant to say instead, “What matters is not what the world thinks you are supposed to be, but, just to be who you already are, and have been, and always will be, this whole time!” Good psychology and theology is always chipping away at the shadow self, the small self, the ego, and the total inability in our Greco Roman heritage to anticipate or acknowledge loss and failure as necessary parts of our journey, while not effecting our identity. The depiction of a grieving Thor as severely human was the most impactful part of the film in it’s message that, it’s okay to let go, to cope, that “Grief is just damn grief” (Richard Rohr 2019) and that hiding how you are really feeling isn’t always shameful or embarrassing, but necessary in our descent from illusion into reality, which most certainly includes ineffable tragedy. There will always be someone who see’s fat shaming from what was meant to be a broader message about grief.
Star Wars Epsisode II, Attack of The Clones (2002).
The decision in a post #MeToo film industry to both hand Captain America’s shield to a person of Color and for Wonder Woman to be the character that destroys Thano’s ship, and Black Widow to be a female sacrifice were in their hyper politically obvious overtones noted. Yet many of those were already present in 2002’s Star Wars. Twitter became a mocking reaction to some deliberate ploy of LGBT inclusion in a group therapy scene with Chris Evans. I had not even noticed it, which, when the film is trying to be affirmative action savvy, reveals too much trying and not enough diversity that did not seem forced, planted, that could not just be effortlessly a part of the story. The film was okay, I was not wowed. As is the case in many films that are mainly meant to have audiences feel gooey with lust for mere action, adventure, vengeance, and happy ever after’s with a mix of valor and virtue to the Greco Romans, the dialogue of such films is always less while the explosions increase in fleeting vain glory, when I guess I was supposed to be excited and ecstatic when all of other peoples childhood heroes were running in one line toward their sworn enemy in repackaged tribalism. That’s it? A page from Gibson’s 1995 standalone with the time warp of Interstellar (2014) makes a billion dollars in a weekend? Our art must evolve beyond little boy fantasies.
“Not pantheism, but panentheism, God is in every thing, and every thing is in God.” ~ Richard Rohr
To hear Rohr’s introduction to his penultimate work: Click Here
Christ is in the 150 year old Cottonwood Tree:
Christ is in the Stranger:
Christ is in the Squirrel:
Christ is in the Salamander:
Christ is in the “bang” :
Christ is in the Jew:
Christ is in the Muslim:
Christ is in the Atheist:
Christ is in the Artist:
Christ is in the Gardener:
Christ is in the Buddhist:
Christ is in the Queer:
Christ is in the unknown:
Christ in the tomb, is still Christ:
ανάσταση των νεκρών (anástasi ton nekrón) – The Resurrection from the dead, is here, now, and already begun.
“The resurrection is a process, not an instance. So Paul can say, “You have been risen with Christ.” (Colossians 1) You are not waiting for it, you are already in it, again metaphor. The astounding statement was that the great resurrection of the human race has already begun! The Easter message is not us saying congratulations Jesus you have been raised, it’s Jesus speaking to us saying congratulations YOU have been raised.” ~ John Dominic Crossan, The Universal Christ Conference, Session 12, Albuquerque Convention Center, March 31, 2019.~
Rohr emphasized the OVER PLAY of the cataphatic, the obsession with knowing, the ability to be ‘non’ rational as distinct from being irrational. The Apophatic, that which we do not know, is by both JDC (embrace and appreciate the unanswerable questions as mystery) and Rohr (not needing to know) is part of being what Jackie so wonderfully presented as the life long journey and quest (we are going to suffer) in “Liminal space.”
While, during the journey, in our true self we are children of God (the anointing of oil). Resurrection is transcending suffering by embracing our larger meaning, which, through this new work on the foundations of Pseudo Dionysius, St. Bonaventure, Duns Scotus, Pierre Teilhard de Chardin, Carl Jung, Thomas Merton, Ilia Delio, (and others) Rohr merges them to make his harmony for the case that our understanding of the intentional and providential plan in geological time of God as INCARNATE FROM THE BEGINNING was entirely lost, and that through centuries both in the protestant and catholic pursuits of theology of glory, lead the church astray.
Christ in cosmic evolution and what GOD IS NOT, that is, Socratic ignorance (learned ignorance) leads us to Kierkegaard adopted when he wrote, “to understand more and more that there is something that cannot be understood.” Richard Rohr calls this the “Second Naiveté” to knowing what we do not know, and therefore return to a life of action (the call to activism by Rev. Jacqueline J. Lewis to stop crucifying Christ, example: the plastic crisis in the ocean etc, enter your five_____) and a simplicity to the contemplative life in practicing “Just this” by: being still and knowing our God, in whom the blueprint and the bang compliment each other, points to the paradox of a Universal Christ that loves things by becoming them (The Cottonwood tree, the salamander, the rock, a dog, where two or three are gathered…, YOU) God is BOTH much bigger than we could ever possibly comprehend (beyond Cosmic) AND everywhere around us (incarnational theology) at the same time!!! This is why Richard wanted to title the book, “Another name for every other thing” which did become the name of CAC’s special edition podcast. A brilliant and timely work that reclaims the blueprint, destroys nihilism, and will challenge us to act for decades.
In the fifth Century, Author Richard Tarnas describes
“the new intellectual milieu The Sophists such as Protagoras, man was the measure of all things, and his own individual judgements concerning everyday human life should form the basis of his personal beliefs and conduct, not naïve conformity to traditional religion nor indulgence in far-flung abstract speculation. Truth was relative, not absolute, and differed from culture to culture, from person to person, and from situation to situation. Claims to the contrary whether religious or philosophical, could not stand up to critical argument. The ultimate value of any belief or opinion could be judged only by it’s practical utility in serving an individual’s needs in life.” (Tarnas, Richard, The Passion of The Western Mind, pg 27, Ballantine Books, NY, 1991.)
We see this in a modern YouTube discussion by Sam Kroner’s video on the exact topic:
In 2016, Franciscan Sister Ilia Delio, O.S.F. explored Teilhard’s philosophy of love and the import of conscious love for the direction of human evolution in a lecture for Boston University’s school of Theology and ministry. She mentions how the truth from the fifth century remains today in (paraphrase),
“Truth being relative, truth, individuals believe, is what is true for individuals, not objectively.”
She goes on to explain how the individual social structure through technology and the individual zoomed in specialties of the University system for the career preparation of the individual especially in the West is not competent to currently serve the diverse needs of creating authentic community.
Being interested in what you think, guaranteed and encouraged to express so from documents like the U.S. Constitution, is an exact mirror to the fifth Century. The individualism expanding from the Enlightenment took the Greek Sophist roots to reemerge as repackaged from the other collapses of Rome reboots, most nearest for the Declaration of Independence being the French Revolution.
The Online peanut gallery, after Steve Jobs put a computer in everyone’s hand, became a weapon against the individual. You can no longer behave in anyway deemed against progress or in what many cases is common sense outrage. Yet the accused as guilty is now a standard every day occurrence. Pseudo accountability for virtue signaling, and actual authentic accountability, are two unintended results. Actual accountability being the original power of the press. Pseudo accountability becoming grandstanding for… so many possibilities. I found Fr Mike Schmitz explanation for virtue signaling powerful in his recent rebuke to the common misunderstanding that ‘all priests’ are silent or corrupt on the recent reports of sexual abuse scandals from more baby boomer clergy at different institutions.
Truth is always about letting healing, realness, and love happen. Given permission for people to be themselves, repression may not have such dramatic manifestations to the extent seen in systemic institutional situations. Rather, the individual permission to be as God made you, a liberation, may produce a healthier environment.
Research by Joseph Chilton Pearce now shows the exact correlation between adolescence brain development and it’s relation to the heart. Scientific data shows neural, emotional, and hormonal connections between the heart and the brain. When given a healthy role model and environment at the peak development ages, Pearce says the steady nurture of positive role models is the most significant common sense and taken for granted goal for youth.
Delio Ilia, Evolution and the Primacy of Love, Video, YouTube.com, Boston College School of Theology and Ministry, 2018.
Kroner Sam, What Is Truth? Video, YouTube.com/TheBearJew , 2018.
Pearce Chilton Joseph, The Heart Mind Matrix, Park Street Press, Rochester VT, 2012.
Schmitz, Mike, , Sex Abuse and The Church, Ascension Presents Video, YouTube.com, 2018.
Tarnas, Richard, The Passion of The Western Mind, pg 27, Ballantine Books, NY, 1991.
I have posted on the internet mob and peanut gallery in detail before. Human beings that disagree with other human beings, or for any other reasons that fit an agenda, or even often times, for no particular agenda at all other than to watch the world burn, will comb through a targeted persons opinions, writings, tweets, photographs, or any other policeable behavior, in attempts to misconstrue, accuse, or virtue signal an offense against that person. We have seen this in the rise of anonymous sources now used by professional journalists at an unprecedented level.
Controversial twelve time NYT best selling author Bill O’Reilly, himself a victim of coordinated accusations by political press outlets put it well in a recent article of his: “A bad moon rising in America” where he quotes Victor Hanson:
“The competition to appear tough, cruel, defiant – and morally superior – is fed by crowds of anonymous laptop and smartphone shock troops. But what has altered is that we now have no sheriff. Or rather, our town marshal – Twitter, Facebook, Google, etc – are on the mob’s side, as if the bulwark between civilization and savagery has left the porch and (joined) the mob…”
Twitter mobs are now smearing Americans at a frightening pace and it is affecting all of us. A special investigation on https://t.co/rryWmyXe7C tonight.
The author also correctlyanalyzes why there will be no host at this year’s Oscars, that nobody will take the job because of the “insane mob” pointing out the total mud that Maroon 5 received on Twitter at the Super Bowl half-time show. Basically, the reality is an all-out assault on free speech that not only goes against political opposition, but in a preconceived confirmation bias of a spectator that is only seeking information from a person to harm the reputation, career, and status of the target, often with malice and vindication.
If you catch Pete Davidson bringing a crowd to silence after a joke or statement that he feels you are judging him on, he will say, “What, you want me to lie?” While some forms of speech are interpreted as low, politically incorrect, or in Luther’s Catechism commentary on the sixth commandment: “murder by words…” Davidson does have an impressive standard of opposing dishonesty and embracing free speech.
Briefing on the Davidson saga:
To set this analysis up Pete Davidson is a cast member of Saturday Night Live as a “resident youth person,” where he brings doses of political jest in his unique form of truthiness on a SNL segment called “Weekend Update.”
Before Lorne Michaels gave him a shot, he was doing local standup comedy on Staten Island in New York City since age sixteen. Immediately entrenched in tragedy with the loss of his dad, a firefighter who died at the WTC on 9/11/2001, comedy became a source of light, healing, coping, and building of community for Davidson.
In aninterview on the Howard Stern show last year, being then drooled over by elite media in the announcement of being engaged to Ariana Grande, Davidson admits being skeptical that he had the talent or gifts to be on the show. In the same interview, he told Ariana before the engagement that she could have any guy, and began scrolling on Instagram ‘hot guys’ that she could have instead of him.
The Stern interview is incredibly important. It shows how Davidson, at his heart and basis of things, realizes what Thomas Merton did, that the climbing ladder wasn’t for him, that he wanted to stay where no fake wall at the top stood.
Yet Lorne Michael’s and Ariana Grande hoisted him up, where now, after the salivating disinterest of the media post breakup, and the mental health fragility shown in his vulnerability to be open and honest about how he feels, has set him up for a drop that can only go down. Yet the bottom isn’t new, it’s the true self, it always has been, and Davidson had a jump-start on that truth, until circles of influence flashed their teeth to sell the popular grand delusion. Who wouldn’t fall for it? It shows the POV of people like Stern, and the whole of celebrity culture who view success as climbing in money, women, and prestige.
The problem is it can only be fallen out of, a mixed world message about identity, which Davidson admits to having been already searching for, has now only been totally confused even more. Pete admits in stages over the years struggle with addictions to shrooms and marijuana, a split personality disorder and doesn’t shy away from his open sexual lifestyle in suggested queues from his condom or STD testing jokes.
His ex, the famous singer, arguably feels guilty or blame (implied by behavior seen even just yesterday) for the abrupt ending of her other ex’s life last year, Mac Miller. Speculation exists that that event was the beginning of the end for the honeymoon engagement and brought all kinds of baggage to the conscience of the singer. The online mob looked for a scapegoat opposing and hating on anything Davidson posted on social media, publicly threatening him physically, and just creating a critical mass of negativity in general.
There is a pattern of people going after him for his freedom of speech. At the roast of Justin Bieber in 2015, Davidson made a joke about Paul Walker’s death that was censored from the aired show. After having a low momenton a public Instagram post on feeling down after the breakup (still making news just yesterday) he deleted his social media after massive press coverage of the post.
Comedy has been a form for healing for him since sixteen. One can only hope that his current pain over past scars can heal through comedy too. To counter the narrative that mental illness does not have to have the last word, to derail the direction of life, or to make someone lie just because the truth makes everyone else in the room uncomfortable. The dedication of the truth and authenticity of his expression, is the restoration of free speech needed not only in America but around the world.
Then New York University Professor Neil Postman would prove that the day after the most unnatural fatal day since World War Two would not come to an all stop, that the rest of us could still entertain ourselves to death (The title of his book in 1985).
While his title is a metaphor of the extremes of our cultural escapes, not even national tragedy would disrupt the truth about the identity politics of demand for profit show business and a direct supply to consumers. On September 12th, 2001, The Howard Stern Show was according to many of the listeners of that broadcast “The only live entertainment” still on regular scheduling for the entire city of New York. The unprecedented scale of tragedy the day before had much of the city leaving the city when flights resumed by the FAA. Postman’s theory proves correct even on Wednesday, September 12th, 2001. Choose any day since technology forever changed, and it’s hard to prove his thesis wrong.
Postman goes in other works to talk about our loss of literacy as a general population. This means language and reference to works in literary form are no longer widely taught, known, or even absorbed unless presented in a digital short piece format. This explains a popular YouTube channel series called “Crash Course” by now famous author John Green. The irony is I wrote a review of Green’s book and the film adaptation four years ago, to which in Postman’s terms two observable truth’s reside in it’s lack of distribution. The first is that no one will read that blog because reality in post modern capitalism people are too distracted in leisure time mainly in what Nietzsche calls, “Always racing to the next experience.” This suggests that there is no desire to find time to read in a society that according to James Gleick’s now eerily accurate book from 1999 is obsessed and unable to accept anything other than speed and speed that is, “Faster.”
The second point is that even if someone found the time to read my blog on Green’s book, they would most likely stop reading it because they have not the context required to absorb the blog without having read Green’s book for themselves. The Crash Course series is the video spark notes form of ‘drive by history’ summations in ten minute intervals to combine as a solution to those observations. For example the video on “English literature number one” has to this moment, 2,950,565 views. If everyone in The U.S. alone had watched it, it would have over 350 million views. Maybe video form is three million more than zero, but not a solution.
No matter the outcome of the midterm elections (ballot issues remain unchanged from my post two years ago) this November, anyone that was not a conscious and literately functioning adult in 1974 will not understand when the sound bites and printing press finally get publish the headline of their wildest dreams: “Our long national nightmare is over.”Of course that is the headline that identity political journalists are salivating to publish in rooting for history to repeat itself (whether that is opposition parties gaining majorities or a POTUS resigning.) It was a line by Gerald Ford when he became the 38th President of The United States on August 9, 1974, moments after President Richard Nixon became the first President to resign the office in history. It was what many believed to be the end of a dark period of corruption in government, and we can see why many would argue that maybe that wasn’t the only case (Howard Zinn, Et Al).
The version of historic analysis will from now on forever depend on to whom you ask, and at what level they are literate in ways Postman predicts may almost certainly become intellectually extinct. This is to say, the parallels that journalists currently live and sweat for in their daily work, will have no meaningful context to millennials, even if the NYT paper paid enough ads to be trending in the top feed of twitter trending topics. 71 million millennials will out number the 73 million baby boomers in 2019. How many would know the Gerald Ford quote? How many would even be directed or suggested to care? Postman says, distraction has taken over. If we have lost literacy, then, it isn’t a problem with a demographic of voters, it has become a problem of all voters. Thus, a society could not evolve at a more rapid pace than merely outliving previous generations. History then, will repeat itself as Huxley says, “The most important lesson from history is that men have learned nothing from the lessons of history.”
A NSFW podcast’s recent episode erupted in controversy when the comedian Nick Mullen revealed his perceptions on the hopelessness of drug users, in the context of what the audience could only assume was also his own personal experience and his own personal state of mental health. A paraphrase of his quote would be, “To be in that state, you have to have no other reason for living.” Later in the podcast comments were made about their perceptions of God and hell. “Think how F****** that would be if you were banished for all eternity. You know maybe enough time for a lesson but eternity?” (Mullen 2018).
What astonished me was that the co hosts began talking about Dante’s inferno, not realizing the significance of the connection between that body of work and the modern ideas of hell and God that are not biblical or archetypal to any traditional faith’s authentic texts. This is explained in detail in Jon. M. Sweeney’s 2014 book, Inventing Hell. You can listen to the episode of the NSFW (Not safe for work) adult podcast specific episode here :https://www.stitcher.com/podcast/nick-mullen/cum-town/e/55506060
A go to mystical catholic theologian based in Albuquerque New Mexico addressed this in a recent talk from 2016 in Pasadena California at All Saints Church when touring one of his latest books. Richard Rohr struggled to understand how the western church had gotten so lost in reward punishment theology. You can see that talk at this link: https://youtu.be/DJDEHdjJ1yI?t=16m
Rohr also has done talks on what he calls the nine different stages of spirituality. One stage is not greater than the other, other stages just merely reflect where one currently is on their individual journey that is pertinent to their experiences, understandings, literacy, and discernment in spiritual life. Rohr says people at stage one are interested only in the inflation of the ego manifested in “feeling and looking good.” This is also the classic definition of hedonism in ancient Greece and Rome (the search and the aim for the highest good, as often as possible, as long as possible. The finest foods, wealth, status, sexuality, humanities, arts, conquest.)
In Inventing Hell, John Sweeney exposes in great detail how individuals like the hosts of a podcast could have a general and public understanding that would not otherwise exist in anyone’s ideas of God or afterlife if Dante Alighieri had not written down his imagination of poetic and idolatrous vengeance.
The podcast which began as a parody became increasingly popular, even while the host and co-hosts would still barely take it seriously. After feedback from the recent episode Mullen posted on Instagram that he was not suicidal but that while he still wanted to die, he won’t yet and he merely somehow hoped that the podcast helped at least in some way other people. The post had hundreds of comments that revealed and validated that the podcast indeed did have a positive impact on listeners in ways the hosts were entirely and totally unconscious. Just like bringing up Dante after a hell comment, without knowing that hell, in our modern understanding, remains entirely the mere imagination of Dante Alighieri.
The question this expose raises is to what extent does nihilism take form in western individuals and beyond identity as ‘you are what you do’ and ‘what you do is only successful if you make X dollars a year, with X type of trophy girl, with X type of car, with X type of projects booked in a only rising career.’ Is the context of broken ego’s related to competition and capitalism, the stall of climbing the tower in what a person has been groomed to understand as the definition of success and the roots to purpose, and the measurement of identity?
The pursuit of happiness is greco-roman hedonism repackaged to results oriented illusions that become revealed as the false self (Merton) or the small self (Jung) breaks down. Is nihilism merely the period between discovering true/big self (Merton & Jung) and a spring board into two different direction, up or down(Craig 1994)? Rohr says we can’t go up without going down first, so the non-dualistic answer is both up and down, but down as up (Rohr 2013). St. Augustine described what Nietzsche would later describe as “God is dead” as his experience in the catholic dogma. Augustine writes, “poets who are called theologians, versifying of their men made gods, or of the worlds elements, or of principalities or powers…. If their fables contained anything that concerned the true God, it was intermingled with the rest that God was difficult to find” (Sweeney, 2014). It seems our modern culture agrees with Augustine and Nietzsche, that is until maybe someone highlights that actual reason to expose the Dante work for the common discourse and the conversation of what contributes to nihilism in different types of societies.
Consider reading the previous post of this blog, “The United States of Distraction and Soupe Du Jour.” I explain why no one is listening to anyone, why no one cares about things that matter, why we post blogs, publish books, write speeches, give speeches with no one listening. Why we enact individual change that isn’t enough and don’t see results on a wider populous scale. Two years ago I prepared a forecast of the four years to proceed after The U.S. Presidential election of 2016. Gifted author Peter Zeihan had written his 2014 book, The Accidental Superpower where he predicted the now leveraged position of our energy policy becoming more independent from shale oil fracking, which turned out to be correct. Many of his predications came true, and so did the items I listed in my two year old post. What I had failed to predict was the full extent of what I had written in a different post in June of 2016:
Facebook trends (this was the algorithm at the time that has since changed) are based on the number of people talking about an item, and not on the merits of the item itself. A news channel breaks a story based on the number of people watching on another news channel’s network, and parrots the story to compete for the same audience, not to report a story on the merit’s itself. A newspaper front page to sell copies of the paper, and not as to inform readers by pertinence. This encourages voices outside the cookie cutter just described to only gain attention by being ostentatious. That shock and awe style of a person over YouTube, or social media, or the press corps to gain populous attention. Examples: The Trump effect and Milo Yiannopoulos.
The example of Milo Yiannopoulos to illustrate this new era of hyper hostile partisan and pseudo tribalism under the guise of competing world view ideologies not just in private individuals off the clock, but individuals who would (on the clock) only work for their corporations if those corporations towed the line or allowed agendas that matched personal ideologies. This weaponizes institutions politically to new levels in the contexts of new media technologies and the rapid fire rate of a coordinated talking point memo in strategy between shared ultimate goals between competing corporations in pursuit of deposing and unconvincing consumers of more adversarial or opposing corporations that their points of view are wrong and should not achieve political power at any level of state. We can see this at length in Sharyl Attkisson’s 2017 book, The Smear.
This same environment can also now be made a case for as being identical to the climate within the FBI from 2016 to now, and different aspects of the establishment or what pundits call the deep state ‘swamp’. Little did anyone know the firestorm that would now exist, or how blog posts or books would ‘age’ after the revelations of new facts. To this day, two years after I wrote that Loretta Lynch’s logic and behavior wasn’t stacking up, mysteries of her decision-making process remain both from her and her subordinates. The reality is that ideological wars exist primarily fueled by social media which feeds TV ratings. I wrote about ‘feelings in the air’ that resembled this in march of 2016. After the local controversy in the state of Oregon over a baseball players story of forgiveness, my suspicions on the true state of public discourse or the levels of consciousness that exist in mass have been now shown to be overly optimistic. Our divisions, assumptions, judgments, preconceived notions, tidbits, perspectives, experiences, perceptions, nuances, are all feeding the ego of narcissus, and not contributing to a dialogue of loving our neighbor (in the spirit of Judeo Christian selflessness.) How else can we explain a person who tweets what they just saw on the television news whilst taking a selfie of their outrage at the same time? Whilst unawares of other global or human events has absolutely no reaction.
The Greek performs with a mask on, and the opiner must be relevant to stay up with the times! Postman plugs astutely Jacob Duche’s 1772 quote in Borstin’s The Americans from 1958, “The poorest laborer upon the shore of the Delaware thinks himself entitled to deliver his sentiment in matters of religion or politics with as much freedom as the gentleman or scholar. . . . Such is the prevailing taste for books of every kind, that almost every man is a reader”(Postman 1985, page 34). Are you holding up a mirror yet? Replace books in that quote with a live twitter, facebook, or text message feed, and we’ve gone back to 1772. There should at least be some kind of false comfort that is isn’t some unprecedented time that we haven’t seen before. I hear often “unprecedented” or “not quite like this before” in many newscasts or analysis. Much is so overhyped I can only imagine what conversations about Thomas Paine were like the first months after his initial works distribution.
“Now what does all this mean in this great period of history? It means that we’ve got to stay together. (Yeah) We’ve got to stay together and maintain unity.You know, whenever Pharaoh wanted to prolong the period of slavery in Egypt, he had a favorite, favorite formula of doing it. What was that? He kept the slaves fighting among themselves. [Applause] But whenever the slaves get together, something happens in Pharaoh’s court, and he cannot hold the slaves in slavery. When the slaves get together, that’s the beginning of getting out of slavery. [Applause] Now let us maintain unity.” (King, April 3rd1968, “I’ve Been to the Mountaintop,” Address Delivered at Bishop Charles Mason Temple, in A Call to Conscience, ed. Carson and Shepard, 2001.)
Fighting among ourselves in the past usually includes: Fighting for power, wealth, influence, natural resources, collective or individual ego, nationalism, race, religion, and political ideology. The tragic part is during the course of these fights exists Denial, perception, and pride. It exists beyond mere identity partisan politics and externalizes to international geopolitics. Robert McNamara in the Fog of War, revealed how after years later meeting with Ho Chi Min, that the misperception and miscommunication of each other’s attempts and intentions were totally misconstrued and had better diplomacy or communication existed millions of lives would have been spared. (The Fog of War: Eleven Lessons from the Life of Robert S. McNamara Ellen Morris [Documentary] (2003).
We have seen internal conflicts that sometimes but not exclusively lead to external conflicts if we were to pan over Western Civilization. Do we struggle with questions like, can good come from evil? I reflected on that on the 15 year anniversary of 9/11/2001, the ‘measuring time event’ of the 21st century and millennials. History, as highlighted modernly by the late Howard Zinn’s version of U.S. history, is remembered in negatives. If the press were to cover anything today, it is in keeping in the dissent that was born out of both Vietnam and the partisan establishment of a renowned collective ego of the press corps that hasn’t subsided since. Neil Postman writes in his last book that the news isn’t news as it is, it is the news as the reporter-producer or editor has interpreted events and decided that their interpretation and presentation of the facts is what a consumer reader wants (Postman & Powers 2008 page 13).
In the age of Twitter, as found in a Harvard Study, many tweets do not separate personal or professional lives in that the platform exists solely for them in the moment “expression of self” in that people who tweet about something would not write a blog about it. Basically twitter is the ego’s way of an individual saying, “I am right, I am in control, and you are ignorant or the enemy if you disagree, and if you disagree, I will either ignore/ghost you, ridicule and attack you, or accuse, spin, and twist your words until you show emotion.” (Reagle, 2015). This is the classic definition of trolling which has been repackaged outside the label boxes and re-hid itself into the unconscious of an individual. If we sample any discourse at all, low profile or high profile in the “class-conscious” (Zinn, 1994) point of view, we find that ignorance is the same in all classes, that the lack of intellectual depth, emotional intelligence, or ability to not just to hear but listen, is not a skill found in any class over the other or in really mass collective consciousness at all. (Rohr, 2013).
We have seen whole acts, systems, or collective lower consciousness acts or conditions in history before:
In 725 B.C. Homer writes in Greek Mythology (The Odyssey) the Trojan war caused by Helen of Troy as timeless metaphor of the desires of mankind that has aged well.
In 399 B.C. the Athenians made a decision. They would accuse Socrates of corrupting the youth, and his punishment would be a fatal cup of poison. (Thomas C. & Smith, Nicholas D. (eds.) (2002). The Trial and Execution of Socrates: Sources and Controversies. Brickhouse, Oxford University Press.)
In 44 B.C. The Roman Senate had a persuasive discussion, and the decision was made. They would remove Caesar from power on the ides of March. The Republic of Rome would come to fall and collapse anyway. (O’Rielly & Dugard, (2013). Killing Jesus.)
In 33 A.D. Jesus The Christ, a revolutionary teacher within Judaism in Judea, would be killed by his own people, whom rejected his claim that he was, “The King of the Jews, or The Messiah.” (O’Rielly & Dugard, (2013). Killing Jesus.)
300 A.D. The Roman Empire (and the Catholic Church) split in two, beginning the division within the one universal and apostolic assembly of believers.
From 1095 to 1395, Christianity, Islam, and the Jews would fight over who owns Jerusalem, a fight which continued under U.S. President Truman in 1948, declared the capital of Israel to this current day. (Housely, 1992).
In the 1500’s The Pope had a choice, his decision was made. Martin Luther would be excommunicated from the Catholic Church, coming with peril and consequence of which was unforeseen. (Bainton Roland, (1766). Here I Stand, A life of Martin Luther.)
Martin Luther had a choice, his decision was made. He could not and would not recant, so help him God! He would rebel full well knowing despite his writing later that his intent was never to split to the church. (Bainton , 1766).
In 1532 Niccolo Machiavelli, suggests Alexander the Great was killed by his own Army, others say he was poisoned by political opposition, others say he died of malaria or typhoid fever. I’m going with Machiavelli. Greece fell. (Machiavelli, 1532).
In 1865, Abraham Lincoln who sought to ‘stop this bleeding’ of a North and South war would be killed. The south fell. (O’Rielly & Duggard, 2011).
In 1963 the first and only Catholic President of The United States would be shot and killed. (O’Rielly & Duggard, 2012.)
In 1964 The Vietnam War escalated to full blown conflict involving increasing numbers of U.S. troops under the direction of Secretary McNamara. (Morris2003).
In 1968, a day after he called for unity in the cause of a true liberation of freedom, Martin Luther King Jr. was shot and killed.
In 1968, The first LGBT riot known as Stonewall occurs in New York City.
In 1975, At the leadership of Richard Nixon, the Vietnam war ended. Over 1,353,000 people died.
In 1981 the first cases of the HIV/AIDS crisis are reported. No action is taken by The U.S. Government.
In 1983, On December 6th, The Federal Response to AIDS by a congressional subcommittee scathes the U.S. Government in negligence to act sufficiently in funding AIDS research and surveillance.
In 1985, The United States Congress funds 70 million dollars of aids research.
In 1985, Father Thomas Doyle warned of sexual abuse by clergy in a report given at the US conference of bishops. No action was taken.
In 1985, Neil Postman published a book comparing and contrasting the realities of “Amusing Ourselves to Death” in the prophecies of Aldous Huxley that not what we hate will destroy or divide us as George Orwell wrote in “1984“, but rather like in a “Brave New World” what we love will distract us – additionally but not exclusively the context of evolving and new technologies of “speed” and entertainment. Dubbed “The United States of distraction.”
In 1990, The Ryan White Act is passed requiring annual funding for AIDS resources nationally.
In 1992, The city of Los Angeles riots the verdict of the Rodney King case after white officers are acquitted of excessive force.
In 1992, Aids becomes the number one cause of death within The United States for males aged 25-44.
In 1994, AIDS becomes the number one cause of death for all Americans aged 25-44.
In 1994, President Bill Clinton ignored options to intervene in an impending genocide in the country of Rwanda. Over 800,000 people died. Even Howard Zinn wrote in favor of intervention in a 2006 article in his final living years.
In 1996, AIDS is no longer the number one cause of death for all Americans aged 25-44, except African American demographics.
In 2001, Saudi Arabia purged and killed corrupt members of it’s government that coordinated, funded, fueled, and co-conspired in the plans of the 9/11 attacks. I wrote about that as the story broke in this blog post.
In 2000, the Presidential election was appealed to The Supreme Court of The United States, becoming the only time a judiciary vote 5-4 elected a sitting president.
In 2002, The Boston Globe posted a story that The Catholic Church had covered up the facts of abuse cases by a Priest within the archdiocese of Boston.
In 2003, The Bush Jr. Administration invaded Iraq on bipartisan distributed intelligence that turned out to be false. It opened a vacuum in the middle east that sparked proxy wars between Iran, Russia, Syria, and rebels evolved from AQI, (Al-qaeda in Iraq) which morphed into ISIS.
In 2008, The Democratic party split ties with loyalty to the Clinton campaign and endorsed Barrack Obama to be the 44th President of The United States.
In 2009, Barrack Obama and the democratic party changed positions in favor of Gay Marriage and LGBT equality and inclusion to campaign against laws of discrimination.
In 2009, President Barrack Obama announced and began the draw down of U.S. coalition forces in Iraq.
From 2009 to 2016, President Barack Obama killed more people using U.S. drone missiles than any of his predecessors combined.
From 2009 to 2016, President Barack Obama deported more illegal citizens from The United States than any other president before him.
In 2015, Former Sgt. of the Baltimore Police Dept. blew the whistle on abuses within the department. The department denied any allegations. Michael A. Wood JR. then wrote a book explaining our human obsession with the flawed systems of government and nationalism as they currently exist (Wood 2017). This was a classic example of the twitter climate explained in the first paragraph. People read what they want to read, to use it for what they want to use it for, then once the show business half life of a story has run it’s ratings course, the truths from it’s revelations are abandoned, discarded, irrelevant, until the cycle repeats itself and shows need an ‘expert’ to be relevant in their competitive coverage of current events. This also matches Postman and Powers point of the media having the one objective of making money (Postman & Powers 2008, page 10).
In 2016, The Democratic party rigged it’s primary so that as they had decided, challenger Bernie Sanders could never become the nominee.
In 2016, The Republican party, the liberal media, and the corporate establishment of The U.S. governments waged direct campaigns and money on super PACS (including a dossier of allegations funded by both democrats and original opposition research from former republican nomination challengers) to attempt to stop the nomination of Donald Trump as the official nominee for candidacy as the 45th President of The United States. The super PACS lost (Comey J. 2018 ). In 2018, Justice Kennedy, the last remaining vote of ideological balance on The Supreme Court of The United States announced retirement, threatening the majority of the court to sway conservative for the first time since the decision of Roe V. Wade in 1973.
Bainton Roland, (1766). Here I Stand, A life of Martin Luther.
Comey J. (2018). A Higher Loyalty.
Housely (1992). The later crusades, 1274–1580. From Lyons to Alcazar. 1274-1580, 528 pp., Oxford University Knighthoods of Christ.
I needed some kind of explanation for the lack of sophisticated and off the cuff judgments I began observing in some editorial typology on the internet.
Real-time news has a squirrel effect. Momentum news starts as a little cigarette lighter, and grows to what James Comey in his memoir A Higher Loyalty calls, “A forest fire.”
Real-time is, going from immigration refugee family separation that existed under Obama and Bush, to Justice Anthony Kennedy retiring putting up in arms the entire ideological balance of the supreme court. Momentum news is drips of information over long periods of time to a climactic conclusion or falling action, OR, an instant real-time shock and awe story involving one of the ‘seven deadly sins’ that creates the doctrine if it ____, it leads or reads.
In 2009, Comic illustrator Stuart McMillen did a visual interpretation (see it entirely here) of Neil Postman’s book that unburied it and flew the dust right off it. The comic went viral and interest in the book surged, so much that it even got the attention of Richard Rohr O.F.M., who released an audio book called, “The Art of Letting Go” around the same time, discussing the comparing and contrasting postman’s now ever relevant observations on our obsessions with the prophecies of Orwell and Huxley.Postman wrote and McMillen resurrected to the online digital consciousness, while Rohr took it to the spiritual and religious community – we can now see with the collaborative efforts that the distinction made of Huxley, not Orwell, is shockingly right. If knowledge is scared for everyone to know, Huxley, Postman, Orwell, Rohr, and McMillen would certainly intend for the revelations of this expose to reach far and wide.
A Facebook acquaintance after the machine gun rapid fire of ‘political news’ this week summed up his feelings and I think the temperature of a large number of people this way:
With mass media designed in its new epistemological resonation as typography 2.0 in the form of tweets, blogs, texts, GIFS, Reedits, YouTube rants, Medium articles, television talking points and the original print press, the culture of narratives and expression has no longer one version of the truth even in the strongest academically cited formats. In the context of the internet, websites like Snopes.com originated in 1994 to ‘fact check’ stories that took rabbit holes online.
As the previous centuries were tied to the age of reason, we are tied to an age of semantical nuance, hyper-partisanship in the context of communal ego’s (single but separate tribes in a two-party system.) and an archive of information that competes for soup de jour’s attention.
On February 2nd, 2017, Andrew Postman rightly accoladed his father’s 1985 book, Amusing ourselves to death, as predicting the age period, circumstances, and reality that explain the election of Donald Trump. 2
Current status quo for intellectuals is no longer who can be persuaded to my point of view, as Andy Crouch once wrote. Current status quo is now if you haven’t been persuaded to my point of view by now, I don’t have time for you and you are the problem. This was ushered in by the mindset likes of José Micard Teixeira whom in 2014 wrote the following statement that began to be widely distributed from his blog as being said by Meryl Streep,
“I no longer have patience for certain things, not because I’ve become arrogant, but simply because I reached a point in my life where I do not want to waste more time with what displeases me or hurts me. I have no patience for cynicism, excessive criticism and demands of any nature. I lost the will to please those who do not like me, to love those who do not love me and to smile at those who do not want to smile at me. I no longer spend a single minute on those who lie or want to manipulate. I decided not to coexist anymore with pretense, hypocrisy, dishonesty and cheap praise. I do not tolerate selective erudition nor academic arrogance. I do not adjust either to popular gossiping. I hate conflict and comparisons. I believe in a world of opposites and that’s why I avoid people with rigid and inflexible personalities. In friendship, I dislike the lack of loyalty and betrayal. I do not get along with those who do not know how to give a compliment or a word of encouragement. Exaggerations bore me and I have difficulty accepting those who do not like animals. And on top of everything I have no patience for anyone who does not deserve my patience.” _ Update: originally written by José Micard Teixeira claimed by him as a quote of Meryl Streep as debunked by Snopes.com 3
The mass virality of the quote resonated with people who feel and agree with José that a dismissal is a form of superior reaction to people whom we disagree than to continue the public discourse. While Crouch is right for any civil future of public discourse, Teixeira is wrong to feed and build on binary us vs them. The misquote distribution’s acceptance and ‘validation’ in spreading tells us volumes of the internet as a vast arena for misinformation at the pay off cost of driving personal agendas. People want what they want to be true, instead of seeking out the truth for themselves:
Unless you bring the truth to a person, it will be like this floor is lava meme. The like are NOT going to go seek the truth. You have to spoon feed it to them if their ego even removes itself enough for you to have a discourse in this age of absent civility.
Dr. King understood the only way forward was to carry all mindsets until they came to arrive at deeper levels of consciousness, that is new ways of seeing. Only the transformed mind can get to the action of progressive change. This involves a form of letting go. This involves the ability to listen precisely at the point when we have our mind made up, even in the circumstances where we may be convinced we are right (and we may be right) but the discipline of transformation at the mastery level is still always listening, unlearning, reproaching, adjusting.
In The Old Testament, the Jews came to a period where God had taught them to focus on “Just enough mana for today.” The media in the age of the internet, television, mobile phones and endless interconnectivity to the always-on phenomenon, is interested in capturing enough of your attention ‘for today’.
Goals and agendas can be long-term, but today’s headline is a race, in a scourge of lesser headlines that get buried, yet can be repackaged or resurfaced in concert to force and change algorithms to trend and control the news cycle in favor of one parties ideologies over the other upon demand, especially on slow news days.
There are journalists, celebrities, and the like to make names for themselves. There are ego’s that convince themselves that only their worldview is right, and anything less or anything else is the enemy and must be destroyed at all levels. What better way then tabloid style information in all resonating forms of current distributable epistemologies? To so cram all forms of media with enough of a narrative that ‘the persuasion of our neighbors’ is spoon fed to brains at the door, instead of sudden individual and isolated awakenings or crystal ball revelations at Woodstock concerts. The tweet forms as a typology to ignite a ‘true’ or ‘false’ response.
In internet typology, there is scarce and almost impossible room for non-duality by design. A mere ‘retweet’ can suggest agreement merely by the reality that it was retweeted at all. A retweet legitimizes a point of view, in the same way, video footage of criminals ‘immortalizes’ scenario, names, and dates into consumers psyches. Exposure becomes legitimization. It is why people opposed P. Donald Trump meeting with the leader of North Korea.
Yet there are also are just people, both who produce information and those who consume it, that have no idea the context of how those specific stories landed on those screens/pages/texts at those specific times and with what catch the authors want to duplicate and insert back into “public discourse.”
The like are doing what Andy Crouch calls the title of his book, even applicable outside it’s Christian context, as Culture making (2009). The question for us is, in the age of distraction can we afford or accept that culture without pushing back in a counterculture of change? Until that collective awakening at critical mass, history suggests to us individual change will not be enough.
“If you push that button, there’s no going back.” ~ Jurassic World, Fallen Kingdom.
The inability to control what happens in the tragic and dark elements of life stands by itself in the ineffable experiences of peoples various lives. With a struggle to comprehend the complexity of some realities, at its basis tragedy with the left part of our logos mind must somehow be attempted to be explained. We want to understand why the Titanic sank, which the community eventually turned to blame. I wrote about this in a past post. Blame is what we use to scapegoat our misunderstanding or inability to comprehend a logical reasoned narrative to deeper unknowns behind the mystery of things.
Rene Girard as explained in this post here, coined this struggle to modern reference-able phenomena where communities must outcast an individual in response to our logical queries to resolve the unexplainable via our logos. The Scapegoat, or scapegoating. We need someone or something to blame. Who do you accuse to blame? Parents? Capitalism? Racism? Classism? Misogyny? (Howard Zinn’s “Peoples History of The United States”?) Extremist religion? Atheism? Political party? Alcohol life-style? Monogamy? Drugs? Psychology, ethics, values? It begins with the accusation, or the accuser.
We know from the Duke Lacrosse case (see my post on that here) that a mere accusation definitely does not mean convicted, and we also know that lack of conviction does not suggest wrongfully accused as well. Different voices around those two paradoxes find solace in the blindfold over Lady Justice. That there is some higher gravity to the impartial truth finally escaping all the attempts at being loopholed away and “coming to the light.” The question is, should accusations be tried court cases on live national television, podcasts, twitter hashtags?
The me-too movement long existed before the outing of abuses by certain Hollywood profiles (read my post on that here) more recently. Any local town with a public education teacher, or private education teacher, say a priest, or a doctor, or a police officer, or a politician, any position of power or authority, where the perceived outcome is a victim of a crime, and in most media reported contexts, is the accused perpetrator of a sexual crime.
A Time To Blur the Lines
In 1989 came the novel, “A Time To Kill” by John Grisham. The novel became the basis for a 1996 motion picture that cast Matthew McConaughey and Samuel L. Jackson, where the film is about an African American juvenile female that was raped on the way home from getting groceries, and the father of the daughter takes justice into his own hands on those accused. In this fictional depiction, the controversy is highlighted to involve both race, power, gender, age, and socioeconomic context for different elements of the culture and environment that people could argue did or did not contribute to the commission of such a crime.
The fuller depth of the story is that people make the arrival of avenging the racism and white privilege of the accused in concert with the other ineffable actions that the white men Samuel L. Jackson’s character Carl Lee Hailey kills to avenge injustice. That murder in that context (John Grisham writes) becomes okay, because they were perpetrators of not just crimes, but sexual crimes. There is stigma about really bad crimes being worse than other really bad crimes, when they are at certain levels all equally bad. The word for bad is actually evil. That which is harmful or injurious in a mild dictionary definition, which also lists, “Theforceinnaturethatgovernsandgivesrisetowickednessandsin.” Sin theologically meaning a state of being through which harmful actions transpire, states of being through actions that depict man’s inheritable separation from God., what first John in the new testament would describe as, “The absence of love.”
A Time To Accuse
The crowd must have answers. The crowd turns. The crowd accuses, the crowd blames. The crowd scapegoats, exiles, crucifies, reactively retaliates in any way that is by definition adversarial opposition and results in sanctions or penalty.
As discussed here, we saw this behavior in the media’s reaction to the reports of the Aaron Hernandez case, people calling for him to receive the death penalty. Then Hollywood actors were accused of sexual misconduct. This came after the Oscar season that Spotlight won best picture, a film that portrayed the staff of the Boston Globe uncovered the sex abuse scandal of the Catholic Church within the Archdiocese of Boston and other places. Suddenly the mainstream media would turn on that same Hollywood crowd in accusing (innocent or guilty) Rufus Buckley, the prosecuting attorney in “A Time To Kill”, played in the 1996 film by Kevin Spacey.
Actor Kevin Spacey is accused of abuse from over twenty years ago. Other wealthy names that only name in the media because of their wealth have been reported also. The latest is MTV host of the show, “Catfish” Nev Shulman. His career is known for advocating for the proper treatment of individuals in romantic relationships, and outing fake secret admirers who take on alternate identities via social media in pursuing relationships with their crushes. The term for that is known as ‘catfishing.’ He has been accused and denies the allegations. San Francisco NFL player. Rueben Foster’s accuser admitted recently that she in fact made up rape allegations against him because she wanted revenge and actually stole $8,000 in cash from him. Just from talking about sexual topics you can be fired or ostracized, if it’s outrageous enough. This happened to Milo Yiannopoulos, and he over a year later still can’t go out in public.
Anchor journalists, Gymnastics coaches, and movie stars. A now former State Attorney General of New York. Former Vice Presidential Candidate John Edwards. The name list get’s blurred from those accused of the unethical and those accused of the unlawful. Bill Clinton’s crime was perjury, pundits argue over the ethics of just what exactly the smoking gun is in and of itself. Hillary Clinton’s personal assistant’s spouse, Anthony Weiner. Again an example of the lines blurring together between criminal and merely unethical. Donald Trump, when he had his mob or wired money himself to keep a female porn actress quiet before or after the campaign. Was it a crime, or was it just unethical? Either way, the media paints this blurry grey line sometimes as equal, wherein the Grisham novel there is bad, and there is worse, and the bad get’s a pass, in retaliation of the worse. Selective justice like that removes contrast.
A Time To Kill?
The same traditional faith book that mentions these very crimes at different levels against interpersonal relationships is the same one that talks about certain reactions to those crimes being the same level of immorality, “An eye for an eye makes the whole world blind.” So the blindfold of Lady Justice then is to keep what is harmful, harmful, and not play nuance semantics when it suits a persons identity politics narrative above all other standards of justice too. The whole walk and chew gum at the same time concept. It is as written before, that all of us inevitably begin a fall or path of descent. Yet a time to kill in war or extreme circumstances is inevitable, as noted in this post about Barack Obama’s Noble Peace Prize speech.
A Time to Smear
The moral or theological question to certain people especially in sock puppet alter ego social media accounts ask who get’s a pass or who doesn’t have dirt? The constitution of the United States merely says after X standard is met such an accused merely get’s a day in court. The mere existence of a day in court is skepticism of the human condition to be as principal higher than to so as falsely accuse, embellish, sensationalize, “Alter facts”, skew, smear, defame, conspire, fraudulently report, etc.
A Time To Divide
An incredibly gifted and talented starting pitcher for Oregon State University was removed from the mound last year after The Oregonian did a hit piece on Luke Heimlich’s past right before he would pitch to win the team to the collegiate World Series. The team lost without him on the mound. At the start of this season, Heimlich returned to the team. Luke has always denied that he ever did any part of the accusations, that he pleaded guilty only to resolve the legal matter and to move on with his life. Do you think that stopped the New York Times from publishing the story again as the season nears the baseball playoffs again? Corvallis Oregon and the beaver nations fans, most of them, receive him well on the mound and embrace his talent. Forgiveness and understanding seem to have happened at some levels of the community and, what a powerful statement that someone who addressed the accusations head-on, went through treatment, could now continue on his God-given journey as an incredibly gifted athlete. Luke one week ago had a career high of 14 strikeouts in one game, beating his earlier in the season record of 12 earlier in the year.
If there is any time or place for forgiveness to be a powerful demonstration for the rest of the world, would it not be now? Jason Stallman, editor of the Sports Page at The New York Times, does not think so. He continues to let reporters report on Luke’s past, with an inability to let go. Anything for a read. Anything to whip up these unresolved emotions, to squeeze on every drop of other peoples pain to get website clicks and revenue. Yet that won’t stop Heimlich from opening in tonight’s game. Nor will anyone wake up in the morning and think, wow, after that reported story, I sure need to subscribe to the NYT.
A Time For Court
In the constitution, the accused get’s an automatic “full stop” to whatever inertia is moving such a flurry of claims against a person (whatever the sources, be inside positions of power or a random childhood friend) to move forward so quickly. A pause gives a better than nothing second chance for the truth, in whatever direction it exists, to come out. While the truth is not guaranteed, the authors of this part of the constitution clearly must have intended that this was the more likelier than not scenario for the best chance for truth to come out in comparison to the alternatives. Yet we have this incessant obsession with the desire to punish as explained by hyper-intellectual and policing expert Michael A. Wood Jr. here in a selected soundbite:
Gateway to silence:
“There is a time for everything, and a season for every activity under the heavens:
2 a time to be born and a time to die, a time to plant and a time to uproot, 3 a time to kill and a time to heal, a time to tear down and a time to build, 4 a time to weep and a time to laugh, a time to mourn and a time to dance, 5 a time to scatter stones and a time to gather them, a time to embrace and a time to refrain from embracing, 6 a time to search and a time to give up, a time to keep and a time to throw away, 7 a time to tear and a time to mend, a time to be silent and a time to speak, 8 a time to love and a time to hate, a time for war and a time for peace.
“Is the time to mend, now? What would it take for us to forgive?