Saturday, August 28, 2021

Taking an Eraser to History

I recently heard about a Spike Lee documentary about 9/11 that "removed interviews with conspiracy theorists." As I read that phrase, I was struck with the fact that this action is such a microcosm of our society and its insistence on erasing anything that may "hurt its feelings." To be clear, I am not a supporter of people who hold to such conspiracies as that 9/11 was an inside job or that George Bush caused the events that took place on that day in order to place us on  a constant war footing. That being said, however, I am neither a supporter of this society's continuous attempt at silencing anyone who dares to contradict the party line.

The greatest danger of this tendency is that it does not restrict itself to opinions that are obviously wrong and misguided. If the censurers were interested only in censuring those who believe that 9/11 was an inside job, for example, then they would not be so insidious. The problem is that they do not stop there. The social network "warriors" want to silence anything that contradicts the party line. So, for example, anyone who may express misgivings about the COVID vaccine, is tagged with the label of one who is propagating "misinformation" (all too often, those who express those misgivings lend credence to the censurers by propagating nonsense such as "those who get vaccinated will die within two years.") You cannot simply hold an opinion contrary to the official line. No, you are an evil purveyor of dangerous conspiracy theories who must be silenced by the enlightened leaders of our technological sector.

The West's penchant for scrubbing anything in history that may be "hurtful" was clearly seen in the wholesale destruction of statues and monuments that took place last year (and that continues in one form or another to this day). Of course, there were many people in history who, although they may have performed great and heroic feats were, in their private lives, deplorable individuals. Nevertheless, to destroy the statues erected to them will not erase who they were and will not somehow magically make our society better. The moral fiber of our country is not dependent on this or that statue or monument. If it is true that the identity of a nation can be discerned by the ones it honors, it is equally true that we should be able to separate a person's honorable actions from their personal character. Too many seek to shine a light on the faults of those who have come before us, all the better to hide their own depravities.

In his book How Shall We Then Live, Francis Shaffer said that the barbarian hoards did not in the end destroy the Roman Empire. They simply accelerated and completed the destruction that the Empire itself had begun. It was its own decadence that led to the final undoing of the strongest empire the world had known. The perversion of Rome, a perversion clearly demonstrated in its treatment of Christians as just one example, led to an erosion of societal cohesion that eventually unraveled the Empire's ability to remain united. In the same way, we see in our own day the coming apart of our country and its people. We are increasingly becoming balkanized by a tendency to look at our own group as the only one that is "woke." 

The only solution to this conundrum, as it is with anything else, is the unity that Christ brings. When Christ comes into a life, the individual tendency to look upon us and ours as the only truth dissolves in the knowledge that He is the truth. Our ability to see things clearly is restored. We are no longer dead and tone deaf to the truth. We are now freed to see the truth, to experience the truth, and to hear the truth. We no longer live "our truth." We understand that truth must comport to reality and that truth is something that is external to us. It is in Christ, and in Him alone that we are set free. Man thinks of himself as free. The more free he thinks he is, the more the grip of slavery is tightened. But "if the Son sets you free, you shall be free indeed" (John 18:36). Will you be free?


  1. Good except I would posit that the anti-vaxers are far the better example of intolerance.

    1. In general I think you're right, though as with most things there are bad examples in both camps. I think the biggest difference is that those who are pro-vaccine look at it as a personal choice and have a hard time understanding why those against are so strident. And the problem is that those "anti" folks seem to be offended that others may even think of taking the vaccine. It is as though they are personally affronted if others don't have the same virulent opposition to the vaccine that they do!