Thursday, March 08, 2007

Political Reflections

I often link to and quote from conservative political articles in my posts here at Scholar. I suppose that I come off as agitating for war instead of peace. Believe me, that is not my intent! However, there are times when we need to stand up for what is right and oppose what is wrong, even if that does mean going to war. When you think about the repressive regime the jihadists wish to force upon the entire world, you understand why they must be stopped.

It appears that many Americans have grown impatient. They want instant solutions rather than long term corrections that will genuinely solve problems. If a war takes longer than a couple of months, they want out. If tax cuts take awhile to work, they want to repeal them. If immigration problems take time to solve, they want to just leave them be. People seem to have lost sight of the fact that problems don't develop overnight and cannot be solved overnight. You have to think deeply and consider all the possible consequences of any course of action. Then you choose the best long-term solution and began, knowing that it will take time--sometimes a lot of time--but that in the end, the problem will be truly solved.

Education in government schools is at least a part of the problem. Our children aren't taught in depth like they were in the first half of the twentieth century (and earlier). Now it seems that they are skimming along on the surface of subjects, not learning the patience and persistence it takes to study something thoroughly. Everyone is praised for everything and no one wants to get into anything too difficult because it might injure somebody's self-esteem or offend them in some way. I imagine the real world is something of a shock to today's young people, a real world in which there is competition and there are difficult problems that render a surface knowledge of subjects useless. This is a real world where there is right and wrong--truth isn't relative like they were taught in school. There really are values and virtues, evils and vices, and they must be sorted out. Some things are of great importance and must be defended. Other things are trivial and time-wasting and need to be let go.

If people don't know how to think things through, they fall victim to every scheme and scam that comes along. They believe everything they are told. They think you can throw money at a problem and solve it. They even think that empty-headed celebrities and politicians always know what they are talking about. Where are people who are able to think carefully and read up on different points of view and consider the ramifications of various proposals? Where are people who have values and standards and understand that liberty, freedom, virtue, morality, marriage, family, religion, and other such things are essential to the development of real civilization? Where are respect and honor? Where are truly good role models?

Being human, none of us are perfect. We make mistakes. We fall short. My concern is that we lack the depth necessary to overcome our imperfections and to correct our mistakes. We are too short-sighted, too impatient. We are too concerned with the politically correct and not concerned enough with what is the truth.

One solution is to teach truth, values, virtue, and morality. If it isn't taught in schools, it should be taught at home and in the community. It can be taught through various forms of media. It can be taught through churches, private schools, and home schools. And there are always some people of depth who survive their public schooling and exposure to mainstream media and learn on their own to study subjects in depth and think things through and consider consequences.

We shall just have to continue to do the best we can in whatever circumstances we find ourselves and be good examples that will reach at least a few people, eventually spreading through society. It would be easy to become pessimistic and give up. That we must never do.

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At 10:18 AM, Anonymous Pop said...

It is indeed at times difficult to not throw in the towel. When a young persons teacher, their favorite "star" and the news (usually MTV or such)keep repeating the same lie. The Libby trial is a good example. Mr. Libby was not convicted of outing a covert operative. The person in question wasn't even covert. That fact does not keep the above named sources from trying to leave that impression or outright stating it. Does anyone remember Dan Rather and his made up story. He didn't see anything wrong with it.

What can we do? For starters, and if you do nothing else you will have done a great, great deal, never, ever lie to your children about anything. If they can't trust you, why should they believe you. You have to be the one that they turn to for the truth. Perhaps not much to the great thinkers of the world, but it is a start. Remember that old saying that "a journey of a thousand miles begins with a single footstep."

At 7:19 PM, Blogger Mary A said...

Good points, Pop. There are so many examples out there of lies masquerading as truth--Scooter Libby's "trial", Al Gore's global warming crusade, the Duke University rape scandal, etc. You are right that parents teaching children truth, and being truthful with their children, is the most important place to start. Good example is a great first step in that long journey.


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