~ I was sitting at coffee yesterday talking with a couple acquaintances of mine, when this mid-forties woman who was sitting near us suddenly interjected into our conversation. She did not like what one of my older friends was saying and she ended up going on a long rant regarding her socio-political views, condemning my friend on a number of points. Her face was beet red by the time she ended her rant, and my friend, whose remarks were not meant to hurt her feelings, tried to soften the situation by telling her, “I can see your side of the story” but unfortunately, the damage was done, and the young woman left feeling morally outraged.
Americans are a crusading people; everywhere they look they see a battlefield to be won.
Everything is an argument, a war, or a battlefield. The typical American is convinced that they are right about everything they believe. Perhaps that seems like a rather bold observation to make, but if you don’t believe me, merely tap someone on the shoulder at coffee today and ask them their opinion of the current political candidates and you will likely get a rather opinionated response with a massive dose of ethics and morality infused in their opinion.
Perhaps the saddest trend I’m seeing in the United States these days is the rise in short tempered fuses on people all across our land. Tell someone you aren’t a big fan of their political views, or show up to church on Sunday and tell someone you weren’t “moved” by the sermon, and you will likely get your ear chewed off in such a scolding fashion, that you will quickly learn to keep your opinions to yourself.
Americans don’t like to hear opinions if they aren’t in agreement with their own. It sometimes feels as if the Right and Left in our society are becoming more fascist and more dictatorial then the old Soviet guard of the 20th century. Authoritarianism reins supreme across our land, and if you aren’t convinced, try to tell people that Professors and colleges are raping our children and taking advantage of them by charging them excessive fees and teaching them bad science and you’ll find that the authoritarian figures will bite your head off like a snake devours its victim.
The United States wasn’t always such a contentiously hate filled society. There was a time when people could share contrary opinions and actually be best of friends. But that was a long time ago, it was many years before The Civil War fractured our country to such a degree that we have never healed from its scars. It’s odd that a war which occurred over a hundred years ago still effects the psyche of so many men and women throughout our country.
In the Post Civil war era men and women began suffering from existential crises. People were experiencing nervous breakdowns all across the USA. William James, the father of modern Psychology and the author of the first ever Psychology textbook, observing the widespread phenomena of nervous breakdowns wrote a book about what he called “The Doctrine of Relaxation” with the hope that people would see that there was an existential crisis sweeping through the land that they needed to be more aware of in the hope of not succumbing to its illness.
Unfortunately, James did not succeed in making people aware of the existential criss, but his brand of psychology did end up having a lasting legacy, and now 75% of Americans are doped up on pharmaceutical drugs thanks to the seeds he planted. I’m sure he would be sorrowfully upset about what psychology evolved into over the twentieth century, it was never his intention to create a discipline whose sole purpose is to dope people up on brain candy and deconstruct the way people think, but sadly, his legacy is forever tarnished.
In the Post-Civil War era, Americans feeling the loss of a foundation in their life turned toward moral crusades. In the decades, and generations to follow, Americans would turn to militaristic movements to try and solve the voids they felt in their depths of their souls. Prohibition, Women’s Liberation, War on Drugs, and a myriad of other movements became ways to “fight the battle” for everyday Americans. Hell, one of the organizations, The Salvation Army even called their employees soldiers!
Prior to the twentieth century, helping the sick or poor was merely the “right thing to do”, but in the twentieth century it became a battlefield to “win”, a moral crusade in which enemies were identified to be dealt with and conquered.
The world is full of evil people, I would never deny that, after all, some of those people create Internet videos in which they chop peoples heads off. Evil is not something to speak lightly of, or to dismiss. When we forget that evil exists, that is the moment the next Hitler rises up and attempts to exterminate an entire race of people.
But everything is not a battlefield. Every ethical belief we personally hold is not necessarily a universal moral belief, nor is it something that we should attempt to enforce on all of humanity.
It saddens me to see humans gather at conferences to talk about environmental issues as though they are wars to be won. Can’t we all just use clean energy because it is a good thing to do? Must we fashion the conversation in the manner of warfare against evil people?
It doesn’t help that your typical college professor exists to indoctrinate students into warfare ways of thinking. Professors over the past 100 years have done a great cloak and dagger routine by pointing all the blame on politicians for all of our societal woes, when in reality, the greatest threat to creating a more stable society has been the professors who control our academic institutions.
Who created the economic crisis of 2008? Was part of the problem politicians in the form of Dodd-Frank who forced the banks to hand out loans by the millions to people who couldn’t afford to pay them; absolutely! But let us not forget it was PhD professors who practically control Standard & Poors and Moodys who unethically and immorally kept rating those loans as Triple-A even when they knew they were not AAA rated loans.
Professors live in little ivory towers where they believe they are above the rest of society. They have controlled education at all levels in our society for nearly 100 years; the things you believe are because professors have taught the men and women who eventually became high school teachers, elementary teachers, politicians or lawyers.
We all complain about politicians and lawyers, but when do we ever ask ourselves; who taught these people to believe the things they believe?
The problem in our society is that we created an educational system that indoctrinates everyone to believe in a certain manner. Why does everyone believe they are right about everything; because professors believe that and end up teaching it to all their students.
The greatest tragedy in Americana is that we moved away from classical education. Instead of a wise men and women who merely teach people to think and discuss, we have a bunch of big headed people who want to lecture AT people for hours.
And so we have a society of pastors, priests, politicians, professors (interesting, they all start with the letter “P”) who love talking AT people, rather than dialoging WITH people.
I’ve become very fond of a number of liberal arts schools in our country where the professors are called “tutors” and where they are not allowed to lecture at students. Isn’t that a novel concept? Instead of sending your children to a college to be indoctrinated, you can send your children to a school where the professors want to hear what your children believe, and are merely there to assist them in learning how to dialogue.
One of the main complaints I hear from parents of college students, is that their kid was a good kid, but once they got to college they gave up all of their beliefs because they were indoctrinated by the college. Sounds pretty sad, but it also sounds pretty typical.
Why are we so obsessed with blaming politicians and lawyers, when every single one of those politicians and lawyers were indoctrinated by professors?
When will we see where the true battle was lost many years ago?
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Categories: Culture & Society