On recognizing the REAL threat to our culture and institutions (hint: it’s not the Right)

A tale of two rallies.jpg

A dear Facebook friend of mine accurately and perceptively posted the following, this morning:

I am constantly being told we need to find common ground and meet in the middle to deal with the alt left and alt right. I just made this reply on a comment on my timeline:

Well, I am not personally concerned with the so-called alt right. I believe that’s all smoke and mirrors meant to pull our focus away from the extreme leftist agenda. Suddenly, everyone is screeching about alt right, kkk, neo nazi, white supremacists… when was the last time you recall a bunch of skinheads pillaging, vandalizing, attacking cops, defacing property, throwing bottles filled with cement at folks and shooting people with paint guns? There is a BIG difference in exercising [our] first amendment right to speech, even if it’s racist in nature and I disagree with it, and being a violent mob that tries to stop free speech and peaceful assembly as well as demand the destruction and removal of anything “offensive.”

There is no middle ground there for me. I will stand by anyone’s constitutional right to express views, contrary to mine or not. I will not even attempt to compromise on the issue of violence and lawlessness. I don’t see how I can find middle ground with folks whose main agenda is the destruction of my nation and my freedom.

Needless to say, I agree completely. Some things should not be compromised on, period, ever. There are radical rightists, of course. Some of them are pictured (if they are authentic, and not planted agents provocateurs) in the top image, above. But they are small potatoes indeed, compared with the large, well-funded, media-savvy, and politically well-connected radical Left, who are actively attempting to destroy not only our historical and cultural heritage, but the very fabric of American society.

Besides, the problem with “finding middle ground” is that the “middle ground” keeps shifting. I saw this with the struggles in the Episcopal Church, back in the 1990s (and later): OK, so you agree to “middle ground.” Well, guess what? You now have 50% of what you once had. And you’ve been pegged as being “willing to compromise.” So then they come back and want to “compromise”… again. If you agree, you’re down to 25%. Then 12.5%. And so on… Nope. Sooner or later, we’ve got to take a stand. Better to do it sooner, while there’s enough ground left to stand on!

It’s one thing to compromise on whether to play checkers or chess, whether to go out or stay in tonight, or even which neighborhood to live in. It’s another thing entirely to compromise on issues like freedom of speech and assembly – and the right to exercise these rights freely, without being broken up by violent assault – or the protection of history and heritage. On these issues, in my opinion, there can be no compromise.

Either one supports the inalienable rights given to us by God and enumerated in the Constitution, or one does not. Either one believes that history should be preserved, even the parts of it which one finds problematic, or one does not. There is no “middle ground.”

Some will attempt to use the Biblical imperative to “love your neighbor as yourself” to justify the actions of the iconoclasts and the barbarians. But a foolish or misplaced compassion is not truly compassion at all. God is a God of truth, as well as a God of love, and a love which is grounded in falsehood is founded on shifting sand and will not long endure. And much of what is going on today is rooted in ignorance of our nation’s history (and the world’s), or worse yet, an unwillingness to even seek the truth.

And this willful ignorance is leading, in too many cases, to violence. Violence against human persons, violence against historical imagery (the difference between Antifa and ISIS has more to do with geography than principle), and violence against the truths of history. As another friend has put it, “it is Kristallnacht in the U.S.” A long, slow-motion Kristallnacht, but I agree. And it is not coming from neo-Nazis or the KKK, but the Left.

When they destroy statues with impunity, can burning books – or, these days, electronically altering them – be far behind? And then, can it be long before they come for us?

As my dear friend so aptly put it:

There is no middle ground there for me. I will stand by anyone’s constitutional right to express views, contrary to mine or not. I will not even attempt to compromise on the issue of violence and lawlessness. I don’t see how I can find middle ground with folks whose main agenda is the destruction of my nation and my freedom.

I stand with her.

Author: The Anglophilic Anglican

I am an ordained Anglican clergyman, published writer, former op-ed columnist, and experienced outdoor and informal educator. I am also a traditionalist: religiously, philosophically, politically, and socially. I seek to do my bit to promote and restore the Good, the True, and the Beautiful, in a world which has too-often lost touch with all three, and to help re-weave the connections between God, Nature, and humankind which our techno-industrial civilization has strained and broken.

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