Wednesday, May 07, 2014

Kicking Cats and Killing Kids

We live in a highly moral society. And we know this is true because our guardians of public morality, our politicians, professors and professional entertainers remind us of this at every possible occasion. Just like the guardians of public morality in Iran, China and Pakistan assure their people that they are the very best and most moral people in the world.

Once upon a time we used to have benchmarks for that sort of thing. We were the best people in the world because we would be willing to die to defend those who disagree with us. We were the best people in the world because we cured Polio. We were the best people in the world because we tolerated religious dissent. We were the best people in the world because we embraced knowledge. We were the best people in the world because we wouldn't let any government push us around.

Now we don't have benchmarks anymore. Certainly not those benchmarks. We would be willing to die to silence those who disagree with us. We don't cure anything, we provide research grants to studies on the rates of alcoholism among Lesbians. We criminalize religious dissent. We mock knowledge and we urge government to take over every aspect of our lives.

We know that we are good people because we are trying to be post-racial. We know that we are good people because we let the people who claim to be good people tell us what to do. We know that we are being good people when we worry about racism, the environment, hunger abroad, income inequality at home and a thousand other things.

Mainly we know we're being good people when we get outraged at the things that the media wants us to be outraged by. We know we're good people when we can drag a bad person out of his home and lynch him in the strange virtual space occupied by the convergence of the internet and the media. Somehow only membership in an affirmative action post-racial lynch mob reassures us of our morals.

That and the occasional viral outrage.

In a Brooklyn housing project, Andre Robinson, a typical denizen, was caught kicking a cat. Robinson had a string of previous offenses, including a knife point robbery, but that didn't outrage anyone. Viral videos of the Knockout Game being played were ignored or denounced as a racist hoax. Andre's video was mild by the standards of World Star Hip Hop which is crammed full of videos chronicling violence against human beings.

If Andre Robinson had been taped kicking a man, no one would have thought about it twice. But he was filmed kicking a cat. And "the internet", a term which sites specializing in viral videos use refractively to refer to themselves, sprang into action to track him down. And track him down they did. Robinson will probably serve more time for kicking a cat, which is okay, than he did for his knife point robbery. Because we are a moral society. We are the best people in the world.

Around the same time another viral video was making its rounds. Emily Letts, a personable abortion counselor, filmed her abortion to show a "positive abortion story."

That strange long lost America of a century ago, whose people really might have been the best people in the world, would have considered Emily a much worse monster than Andre. But that society sometimes seems to have vanished as far into the past as Ancient Rome. It hasn't really, but it has been banished thoroughly from our public spaces. Its brand of morality no longer informs us. Instead it is passed down precariously through families and communities as a local form of dissent.

What are we to make of a society where kicking a cat is the worst imaginable crime (except possibly expressing negative sentiments toward black people in a private conversation) while killing a baby is a form of empowerment? A century ago they would have thought us monsters. Today we think that they were the monsters. At least that's what our guardians of public morality insist on telling us.

Today we burn dead babies for heat and send out SWAT teams after cat kickers. In 1914, they would have ignored the cat and they had no SWAT teams, but they would have made every effort to save an endangered child.

Perhaps they were monsters. Or perhaps we are. 

Public morals reflect the shape of a society. Today more households have pets than children. So it's only natural that many value pets more than children. Morality follows emotional attachments. Love has become the ultimate arbiter of public morality today. And that has its consequences in more ways than one. Our morality is love, not family.

In 1940, 43 percent of all households had children. By 1960, that number was up to 44 percent. Today it's around 20 percent.Meanwhile 63 percent of all households have a pet. 40 percent own cats. Or as some like to put it, the cats own them. There are more cats in America than children.

I like cats and I am not writing this to begin a debate on abortion. Debates over morality are often driven by an emotional conviction that our choices and compromises are correct. And that those of other people are wrong. I will speak to something simpler instead. Survival.

Societies that place a low value on human life can survive as long as they have high birth rates. If they have low birth rates and use household pets and pornography as substitutes for the biological reproductive instinct... they have no future. They will not survive. They will die alone and the civilization that succeeds them will have many children, few pets and will kick their surviving cats.

That isn't a matter of debate.

A society that cannot survive is not moral or amoral. It is irrelevant. To its own people however it is inherently immoral. No virtue of a society can be worth its destruction because that will also destroy the virtue in question. A society that chooses extinction can never be moral, because the thing that it chooses to die for will not carry on its morals. That's a simple matter of everyday evolution.

Suicidal peoples are replaced by non-suicidal peoples. The latter may not be moral, but they have survival strategies that work for them. We no longer have a survival strategy. Instead we have become an amoral society obsessed with a public morality based on political correctness. Our morality bends easily to outrage. It bends only reluctantly to tradition.

Opportunistic empathy is everywhere. We constantly feel sharp jabs of viral pity and outrage. Enduring group empathy however is fading. Our families and communities are becoming fragmented. Too many of us are angry and confused... and both of those emotions are easy enough to exploit by the masters of media manipulation who use confusion to distract and emotion to control.

The process is slow. It's slow enough that we only notice something is wrong when it's shoved in our faces. The contrast between Andre Robinson and Emily Lett may be one such moment.

Or it may not be. Your mileage may vary.

America isn't doomed, but it is troubled. It is not on a survival path. It is on a path to social destruction and national destruction. If we can't agree on morality, we ought to at least be able to agree on survival.

A moral society survives. A society that does not is immoral. Survival is the most elementary premise of morality for the same reason that having children is the most elementary premise of a society. It is the thing you do if you want your virtues to survive. A society that does not wish to survive is inherently immoral by its own admission.

That is how the new progressives see their society. They define its morality through its will to suicide. It is a moral martyrdom that defines survival as immoral. And that makes it a cult of death.


laura r. said...

daniel, no one "burns babies for heat". that was an offensive image. otherwize the artical is compelling, excellent insights.

Daniel Greenfield @ the Sultan Knish blog said...

unfortunately yes they do

"Marion County, Oregon commissioners approved an order Thursday to stop an incinerator from using aborted babies to generate power. The order states that the incinerator must stop accepting medical waste until procedures are in place to ensure aborted babies are not among the substances burned to produce electricity.

As Breitbart News’ Warner Todd Huston reported earlier on Thursday, authorities in Victoria, British Columbia revealed that the remains of aborted babies are disposed of in the United States and sent to a facility that burns waste to provide electric power for Oregon residents."

Doris Wise Montrose said...

laura r. see this:

laura r. said...

beyound my imagination, no body parts should be used for this. there's something anti god about it all. anything from any type of surgury should be off limits. i see you posted the vid on FP, i will pass on seeing that. thankyou for responding.

Anonymous said...

There was an incident recently in Great Britain also where it was discovered that hospitals were using the ashes of aborted babies for heat or energy.

lemon lime moon said...

Sadly, body parts are routinely burned in incinerators at hospitals etc.
America is on a downward spiral. It would be a long hard road back.

mindRider said...

With cremation an acceptable form of disposal of the body in all parts of the world but to adherents of the Abrahamic religion, the burning of remains of aborted babies is not the un-ethical part, aborting babies however, instead of preventing their conception by those who do not want children, is.

Anonymous said...

Is this typed correctly?: "They define its morality through its will to suicide." Here is the deception element of abortion: women who abort do it because they believe it to be crucial to their own survival. I tend to think it's the opposite of the last line. Rather than a progressive defining survival as immoral, they vainly believe themselves as martyrs for helping those struggling to survive. It's immoral because that's all they do.

Empress Trudy said...

Perhaps P.D. James "The Children of Men" is not so much a cautionary tale but a guidebook.

The Ray Esquivel said...

Is it art imitating life or vice versa? Aliens inhabiting a host body to suck the life out of the host, to spawn more like it's own and when done with the host, leave behind a trail of waste and destruction. There are no morals involved. Maybe at the beginning, there were lies and stories to deceive and bring hosts to a point of weakness, distraction, and acceptance. But then the bold faced aggression eventually begins. What was healthy, growing and prospering is consumed and left a hallow shell. Consumption. And in the beginning it was capitalism, consumption, and the big bad USA who was to blame for all the ills of the world. So due justice would be it's destruction. According to the aliens who have never created anything ... only consumed off those who have created. And when their host dies. They move on to another host. Another world. To conquer. To dominate. To destroy. There is no God involved here. There is no judgement. And like a killer virus, there is only one answer ... "annihilation" because the alien is driven by the DNA of wrong thinking, sick thinking, destructive thinking. Never has there been an instance in history of the positive. Leave even one cell alive and that germ will grow, replicate and spread. So much for live and let live. In this world, the fight against the alien thought will never end because it is the evil seed that is sin. But there is no sin because there is no God.

DenisO said...

Though I agree with the premise that Society's path is survival-negative, I would not go quite as far as to where it will end. I am optimistic, perhaps without apparent reason, to believe we will turn it around.
For survival reasons we have power and herd genes, and right now, the herd is following the powerful leaders that they accept and follow rather blindly to concentrate on feeding, which too is "natural".
At some point, we turn, remove our alpha male and chose another that we will watch carefully for a more positive survival strategy. This may seem hard to believe, but it is the way of life that succeeds. If the survival-negative genes go over the cliff, they will be replaced by more dominant survival-positive drivers, that will rebuild necessary strengths and defenses. The cliff the others chose might be slavery, something other societies have found in numerous historical episodes that resulted from following wrong leaders. Religions traditions are based on those histories.
The Universities have engineered their own slavery, and they are already captured by the leader they created. They walked into the cage for the free "food", now the gate is closing and crushing those that try to escape. Easy ones first, the slave master knows, but unless it is done swiftly, the harder ones will escape. The State will not be fast enough, tripping over their own feet and regulations, and they will fail. We will survive, but we may see hard times. Depends on how long we sleep and graze.


Anonymous said...

High society and the aristocrats of the past were immoral and hypocrits. The royals and the wealthy landowners had one set of standards while those below them, the majority, had another set of standards based on a mostly religious outlook on life which had defined morals and standards in which they tried to live by.

Today, in the U.S., the working class has the same immorality as the aristocrat class, i.e., there are no standards. Atheistic Communism demanded immorality. People with morals and standards aren't easily controlled. The Progessives in our political, academia, courts, education, and public policy making positions have figured this out. Give the people a green light to do everything against common sense, decency, responsibility, and attack the traditional sense of morality and ethics and you form a compliant and manageable society where the people beg for legalization and acceptance of every kind of humanity-destroying act one can think of. The acceptance of murdering the unborn is a drop in the bucket. As Daniel pointed out, a society that doesn't care if it survives will not survive. An immoral society can never go far enough into the abyss of evil and in the end, will simply destroy itself.


Chris said...

To think that one's abortion procedure has been transformed into an ersatz "performance art" kind of event does indeed go beyond the pale.

Paging Winston Smith, paging Mr. Smith. Your society awaits you...

Horace Staccato said...

The U.S. is beyond merely being doomed. It is gone. for the past two decades at least, the government has been the dedicated enemy of its own country. EVERYTHING they've done has been destructive. There's a very good case to be made that this has been true since the 60s. I think so. Of course the original pathogen infested our civilization at least as early as the 30s with the ascent to power of that lying Leftist charlatan Roosevelt.

Our current government under that affirmative-action parasite Obama is a reflection of a severe social pathology that keeps having to rename itself because it is uniformly evil and utterly unprincipled; the New Left, Liberals, Progressives, etc.

In the process we have demonized all virtue and glorified vice. Along with that Bizarro World disaster, we have facilitated a hostile invasion of third-world savages who are supposedly our superiors and to whom we look for salvation. This is quite literally clinical insanity.

We cannot save what is already gone. In order to make things right, we will have to ask our God for forgiveness, utterly reject our current government, reconquer our land from the third-world savages and start essentially from square one. This will be extremely unpleasant, but in the process we will reclaim what is ours. It really is pretty simple. Admittedly there's nothing easy about it.

Anonymous said...

Perhaps the worst thing is that kicking the cat was an act still against the law; killing the baby was & is legal.
Now, I don't like people much: I like Mark Twain's concept of "the damned human race." I think these people are both monsters. Viscerally, the cat-kicking makes me want to reach for my weapon. The baby-killing makes me want to pray that the misguided woman may be enlightened. I can judge whether that makes me good or bad. I do know that ours is a sick society when both videos are posted, and only one leads to charges.
I'm not going to bother with "in case of rape or..." qualifiers. To me, those are a given. It's when death is used as a form of birth control that offends me.
--Tennessee Budd

Michael said...

Relying on you, Mr. Greenfield, for a daily dose of sanity, I nearly choked when I read the first sentence. Then, quickly realized you had your tongue so far into your cheek that it might cramp.
Very well said, and by the responses, necessary. (Unfortunate that not many know that Oregon was actually using fetuses to heat a building -- quite a difference between respectful cremation of amputated limbs, and using the human body and/or its parts to heat someone else's body.)
When primitive barbarism can be acknowledged as a viable "religion" in the 21st century, the chance at grasping at a decent morality is very, very slim.

Anonymous said...

I found the video of the abortion 'celebration' appalling, the fact that the patient was a grown woman made it even worse. But in the bigger picture, a scared, pregnant, 14 year old who has had little love, no role models, and no real parenting should be much more concerning. Not just for her abortion, but for her life, and the millions of lives just like hers. There is concern too, for young boys who have no one to show them how to grow up to be good men who respect women and yes, even animals..
Casual, sometimes near frivolous abortion is just one symptom of a far bigger decline in society in general.
Back when Fred Flintstone and I were growing up, most of us had a great fear of disappointing our parents and our family. How old fashioned we were, it seems..

meema said...

Ask a Liberal to solve this conflict:

A woman is declared owner of her body and therefore can choose to abort a fetus. If she chooses to allow the fetus to be born she can choose to bar the father from the delivery room. The father sues to be allowed to attend the birth and wins the suit because it is established that he has equal rights (and obligations) to the child because his DNA determines his equal ownership. But if a man’s DNA, in the fetus from conception, defines his equal rights to the developing child, does he then have the right to say it cannot be aborted regardless of the mother’s right to choose?

If a fetus, in whatever stage of development, is the holder of the same DNA that verifies the parental rights, does the fetus/child not have the right to choose to survive? If the fetus/child is left to mature to a state of viability outside the womb is that not an indication that the fetus/child has made a choice? If the fetus/child chooses to live, is this not established as a right that must be defended?

One could argue that the fetus/child in the womb is not yet a ‘thinking’ person who can choose. But the DNA in all living things is preprogrammed to choose to live and therefore strives to live, which is a condition enabled by the parents when they allowed their DNA to be joined to become a fetus/child.

A liberal, true to his/her anything goes theology, is forced to agree with all three rights, the woman to hers, the man to his, and the unborn child to his/hers. However, this is contradictory and not possible and therefore creates a state of anarchy wherein natural order gives way to confusion and disorder. Natural law provides that if there can be no standard to settle the conflict, something has to give.

There are no solutions in anarchy because there is no requirement to obey authority, moral or otherwise. There is only confusion and nonsensical response that causes more confusion which ultimately leads to the failure of civilization. A liberal stance is to leave the result of conflict to chance. Whichever ‘right’ finally overcomes the others settles it. But ‘Chance’ has proven itself to be a fickle deity that destroys rather than builds.

Civilizations that have been established on standards, imploded when those standards were replaced with anything goes. There is no guarantee that a great nation will always continue to be.

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