We’re in the midst of a spiritual (call it political if you need to) war, one for which ultimate victory is assured, but one for which it is just as certain many battles will be lost. The two sides are (1) those who hold to human nature and (2) those who abhor it. If you have to ask “What does he mean by human nature?” or you say “There is no war” (see pic links), there is better than a good chance you side with the enemy.
Wars ebb and flow, sometimes growing hotter, sometimes cooler. Ours is growing hotter. It is not yet blazing. Wars are characterized by battles, and battles by whether both sides choose to engage or one opts to withdraw. But that is too simple. There may be battles within battles and within any melee there are ruses, delaying actions, feints, and false and true retreats. And there are charges, advances, forced marches, assaults.
We have to figure out where we are and what we’re going to do in the next phase.
No war is won by hiding behind fortifications. As the man said, “Nobody ever defended anything successfully, there is only attack and attack and attack some more.” Yet this does not imply retreats are forbidden. There is no dishonor from tactically avoiding a vastly superior force. Retreats can be delaying actions. They give, or can give, time to recuperate and gain strength and avoid unnecessary causalities. But if retreats are central to a campaign, they engender atrophy, encourage apathy, and cause overriding fear when offensive measures are proposed. A retreat must always seen as the first phase of an attack elsewhere.
When the skirmishes we face break out into full scale world warfare—the war is already bloody in the Middle East, Nigeria, and other localities—we have to have some plan in place. One plan is ill-defined the “Benedict Option“. A retreat. And, from what I can gather, not a measured withdraw, but a drop-everything race for the hills. To a place where the mountains are high and the emperor far away. Appealing, that. Only, no such place exists any more. Antarctica, maybe. Anywhere else you go, they can find you.
We can’t retreat. Not all of us, not all at once. That would turn into a rout, where the stragglers are moped up and eliminated piecemeal. Never forget our enemy does not give quarter. And even if we all agreed on a retreat, some of us would have to fight a delaying action while others of us fell back to this remote preserve.
Of course, instead of retreating, we could out-and-out capitulate. Bye bye, Episcopalians (who’ll today vote for gmarriage). Sayonara, Bishop Cupich (his reaction to the gmarriage decision was to yell at faithful Catholics).
The other option is to fight like men. That’s also the opinion of our friends John Zmirak and Ed Feser. Zmirak first:
There is nowhere to hide, no ghetto so obscure that the gay totalitarians will leave you alone. Think of all the money that Germany spent persecuting a single homeschooling family. Laws like Germany’s are coming here soon, if we don’t fight them tooth and nail. Remember the thousands of bureaucrats who dutifully audited Tea Party groups for the IRS. Soon thousands more will be scrutinizing your church, its school and every Christian organization in the country. The Left has tasted blood, and intends to feed. Even if you piously decide to turn the other cheek, and congratulate yourself on being persecuted for Christ, you have no right to make that decision for your children or your neighbor.
Suppose that as you look around, you notice that some of your allies are starting to slink away from the field of battle. One of them says: “Well, you know, we have sometimes been very insulting to believers in the Matrix theory. Who can blame them for being angry at us? Maybe we should focus more on correcting our own attitudes and less on changing their minds.” Another suggests: “Maybe we’ve been talking too much about this debate between the Matrix theory and commonsense realism. We sound like we’re obsessed with it. Maybe we should talk about something else instead, like poverty or the environment.” A third opines: “We can natter on about philosophy all we want, but the bottom line is that scripture says that the world outside our minds is real. The trouble is that we’ve gotten away from the Bible. Maybe we should withdraw into our own faith communities and just try to live our biblically-based belief in external reality the best we can.”
Never apologize for the truth. Show no weakness. It’s like blood in the water to starving sharks.
Update Does the word “boycott” mean anything? Disney tells its Christian patrons, “We hate you.”
Update Unnatural is the New Normal. From contraception (against human nature) to gmarriage.
Update Mark Steyn.
I started the day on Bill Bennett’s radio show, which is always fun. Jonah Goldberg was on before me, and advanced the proposition, after the Supreme Court’s almighty constitutional bender last week, that it wasn’t so bad; conservatives who just pottered around in their own world and tended to their families would still be able to lead lives largely unbattered by the forces of “progress”. A few minutes later, one of Bill’s listeners, Claudine, came on and said that’s what Germans reckoned in the 1930s: just keep your head down and the storm will pass. How’d that work out?
Update State Silences Bakers Who Refused to Make Cake for Lesbian Couple, Fines Them $135K. As predicted.
In the ruling, Avakian placed an effective gag order on the Kleins, ordering them to “cease and desist” from speaking publicly about not wanting to bake cakes for same-sex weddings based on their Christian beliefs.
“This effectively strips us of all our First Amendment rights,” the Kleins, owners of Sweet Cakes by Melissa, which has since closed, wrote on their Facebook page. “According to the state of Oregon we neither have freedom of religion or freedom of speech.”
"There are two kinds of men: those who believe in original sin and idiots."
Nicolás Gómez Dávila
— Wagner Clemente Soto (@wcsoto) July 6, 2015