Sunday, August 16, 2015

Only One Way Works

The moral message my father wanted me to learn from my attempts to fix all those broken clocks is that only one way works.  America’s founders understood this message as well.  They acknowledged that although there may be many different ways to structure human society, only one way works.

But, some may counter, don’t we see many societies structured entirely differently that seem to work?  The answer is that for brief snatches of time, almost anything can work.  Even adultery seems to work during the short moments of stolen bliss.  Running your care without regularly changing the oil might seem to be a new and more economic breakthrough in car ownership, but only for a while.  Eventually the mistake becomes painfully evident.  As mature citizens we have to learn to hear the sinister footsteps of approaching consequences to the well-intentioned policy decisions of today.

We tossed out the moral message of the clocks only a few decades ago.  Until the early 1960s most Americans accepted, often without even thinking about it, the basic ethics of Judeo-Christian thought.  Until the early ‘60s few among our populace doubted that the best citizens are produced in a family in which both a man and a woman raise the children.  Until the early ‘60s nearly everyone believed that it was important for all to work for a living and that living on the dole was sad and even a little shameful.  Until the early ‘60s we even understood that shame was a legitimate component in shaping our society.  “What will the neighbors say?” was a noble expression of concern for community standards.  Today it would be more likely mocked by children raise in the spirit of permissiveness and contempt for any kind of authority.

For less than fifty years we have been living with the result of saying that all ways of organizing families and societies are equally valid.  It is still too early to see impending doom.  Remember, though, that communism (a disastrous rejection of a biblical blueprint if ever there was one) survived just seventy years.  And for those peering ahead into America’s future, the signs are become dismayingly clear.

Rabbi Daniel Lapin, "America's Real War," pg.73

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