I’m not going to attempt to state the following ethical impasses in a “fair” manner, as a shallow mind might style it. My overarching point is intended to be precisely that the ethical common ground is lacking to justify our being considered a single society or a coherent culture. Personally, I find that I can neither make a convincing case for two and two being five—in pursuit of “presenting both of the issue’s sides fairly”—nor do I have any desire to gesture at such well-balanced absurdity.
A man should not have his reputation ruined over a 36-year-old accusation without any details of time and place, its supposed corroboration a string of puzzled “witnesses” who either remember nothing or remember circumstances entirely at odds with the charge. When the barbarity alleged by the accuser is grotesquely out of tune with every other validated fact about the man, especially, elected representatives should not be queuing up at the microphone to call for his lynching. And, no, women do not always tell the truth. About thirty years ago, I briefly dated a very troubled woman (in an irreproachably Victorian fashion not exactly current in the Eighties) with whom I was “fixed up” by a well-intentioned third party. I had no warning of what loomed. When this tormented soul’s drinking problem and troubles with a physically abusive father (with whom she still lived) became more and more apparent, I tried easing my way out the door. That wasn’t destined to happen. Instead, I was threatened with being slandered all about my workplace if I even thought about exiting. I had to disconnect my phone for about three months… and the pathetic threats, as far as I know, were never executed.
No, women do not always automatically tell the truth. On the ledger’s other side, a man’s history of punctilious propriety does not mean nothing just because he’s a man. It certainly doesn’t mean that he must be sweeping dirt under the rug, which would be equivalent to saying that the accused is guilty if the evidence shows it, and even more guilty if the evidence is missing. Absurd—outrageously absurd. To attempt a “fair” representation of such bigoted, perverse, self-serving claptrap would be to give consideration to lunatic hostility or runaway stupidity.
I cannot talk to such people. I have no wish to talk to them, or to listen to them. I am uncomfortable knowing that they inhabit my part of the planet. If I could easily ferry one of them out of a flood’s path or travel an extra mile to retrieve an old man resolved upon dying in his rocker, I’d lean to my oars and go talk grandpa around.
Much of this malarkey is said to orbit the sacred right to abort babies. The claim of an imminent threat to the “right” is itself false on its face: no judge can constitutionally legislate from the bench. The real animus surrounding this case arises precisely from the contrary—and covert—objective of placing a judge-dictator on the bench as a way of circumventing elected representation.
But take the protesting, screeching Furies at their word: why is abortion the passkey to freedom and progress, and its abridgement a return to chains and slavery? Any woman with a calendar and a pencil may circle three days of the month when she will abstain from having sex. Is that demand medieval—or is the calendar too sophisticated a technology?
Or are the men of the world, as many of the unhinged opposition insist, so brutal that a woman may not pass a single day of the month unmolested? Is every woman raped at least once a day? The derangement of so paranoid a fantasy is beyond anything that Apuleius could have cooked up. Inasmuch as most of the nightmare-fantasy’s peddlers are not clinically insane, one must attribute the whole line of argument to unprincipled mendacity—and truly arrogant mendacity, as if someone should look you dead in the eye, declare that you have horns, and expect to be believed by every observer. These maenads are boldfaced liars by default if they are not raging psychotics. Actually, a pregnancy for any woman outside the window of 14 to 30 years old is rather difficult to achieve even in six months of regular sexual exchanges. Yet many of the same harridans who paint their crotches red and wave coat-hangars are also delivering ghoulishly joyous speeches and cutting YouTube videos “celebrating” an abortion (or abortions) that they have relished, apparently after refusing all contraception with a determination that would awe a Catholic washerwoman.
It disgusts me to be sharing the relics of a community with people who revel in baby-slaughter, not as a right, but as a rite. And it disgusts me well beyond my descriptive abilities that such unnatural hellhounds wrapped in a woman’s hide should be mimicking the outrage of their virtuous sisters who have been assaulted by some male jackal. Perhaps traditional Islam is the best answer for them: a man who will keep them shrouded and walled away from any worldly contact. But, no, they say that they want no part of raising a family… they apparently just want the “right” to sex thirty times a month (and once more on January, March, May, July, August, October, and December). If, indeed, they really live their lives in such a manner, it may be just possible that most men in their circle are sociopaths; for a magnet attracts stray shavings, and carrion draws vultures.
I am long, long past the point, of course, where my words have rendered me damned per saecula saeculorum and excommunicate from the community of “sensitive” people—people who never utter a hateful word and harm no one, who live and let live… who would allow you to “identify” male today and female tomorrow, and to enter two different restrooms within the space of an hour. In my place of outer darkness, I would ask of the neighboring black hole just how all the male head-hunting jibes with such liberality. If a woman is always to be believed and a man never, then why may the man not declare himself a woman upon the witness stand and charge his accuser with being male? For women never lie… and our defendant is now a defendante.
I seriously believe that, if anything, my inclination to sympathize with lame ducks and crippled sparrows is excessive. I should never have anguished so over the alcoholic woman with the brutal father, otherwise. I’m not a stranger to depression; and, indeed, I would disagree with many of the cultural cheerleaders (with whom I tend to be politically ranked by “the Resistance”) that America is the greatest nation the world has ever seen. Our society generates insecurity, neurosis, and loneliness the way a steam locomotive generates smoke. That isn’t to say that I wish to topple everything over in favor of some hare-brained utopia: it’s just to acknowledge the facts.
For the very reason that I cry foul, however, when commentators drape the US in a Superman cape, I cry a dozen fouls when critics of the opposing persuasion spout vicious lunacy and then dare anyone to indict their self-contradiction. For the very reason that the perplexed and confused excite compassion in me, ideological profiteers who use others’ suffering as a club to beat down their rivals for supreme power stir in me a bottomless contempt. I can take issue calmly with those who attempt to index quality of life simplistically with per capita income; I can’t restrain my temper in the presence of those who size up my color, my gender, my age, and my probable culture at a glance, then tell me to pay a fine and go to the back of the line in sackcloth.
There’s no possible basis of community with such self-righteous stormtroopers. There’s nothing to talk about, no negotiation to be made. When I am in attendance at a flag-raising (since I lately wrote of this issue), I do not feel inclined to take a knee, because the gesture’s intent would be susceptible to wild misinterpretation… but I certainly don’t feel overtaken, on the other hand, by any sense of bonding with the mass around me. Not any more. Too many warpainted head-hunters are in their midst. They are not my fellow citizens: I scarcely find them recognizable as fellow human beings.
Some idiotic poll or other has recently proclaimed that about half of us suppose civil war to be imminent. Civil war… I very much doubt it. But massive civil disobedience? Rioting in the streets? Refusal to pay taxes to public schools… refusal to admit those from that part of town into this part of town? Something on the order of serial secession—something like the dissolution of the Union into five parts—such as Soviet analysts foresaw two decades ago may be in the tea leaves. And far from wishing to avert it, I more and more find myself disposed to think that it’s our best way out of the evolving hell over which our flag waves.
I learned a while back that there’s no easy exit from a room where a bipolar, substance-addicted psychotic expects you to stay.