Now that we’ve had a few days to cool down over the riot last Saturday in Charlottesville, we can look at the matter a little more dispassionately and discern a pattern working its way out.
The people who organized the so-called “Unite the Right” rally are members of a fringe group that, for better or worse, has come to be called the “alt-right.” Their core ideology appears to be that “white men,” that is, those of northwest European heritage, are the bearers of civilization and all that is noble, and are presently under assault by the Left.
When President Trump made his initial statement about the riot, he was widely criticized by Democrats and Republicans alike for his alleged failure to condemn, explicitly, “white supremacists.” As Orrin Hatch eloquently put it, his brother had not died fighting the Nazis in World War II in order to install them here.
If we backpedal just a few months, we will find numerous instances of this very same president, then candidate Trump, chiding the Democrats over and over again for their failure to utter two words: “Islamic terrorism.” And the Left’s reluctance to engage the jihadi threat is also entirely based on a racist core, in their case: the notion that the darker and browner one’s skin is, the more purely noble one is, and the more oppressed by “white privilege” one is.
In other words, there is no “alt-right” and no “alt left”; they are two horns on the same bull, and that bull is the phony, 19th-century pseudoscience which exalts one “race,” based upon a set of external characteristics, over another.
For well over 150 years now, we have been embroiled in this same ridiculous conversation, fueled by ideas that have been rendered obsolete by modern genetics, ideas which were in fact known to be incorrect from the moment they were first formulated.
If we go back to the founding of the republic, we encounter the Declaration of Independence, which asserts boldly that “all men are created equal” and that they are all endowed “by their Creator with certain unalienable rights.” From this we can discern two fundamental truths: (1) the belief in a Creator Who made us all in His image (so that the color of one’s hair, eyes, and skin plays no role in anything; how could it?); and (2) that the Founding Fathers, including the slave-holders among them, in particular Thomas Jefferson, who authored the document, did NOT own human beings as chattel property because they believed them to be “inferior” to other human beings; that notion came later.
The fact is that the racism of both the unhinged “alt-right” and of the equally unhinged “alt-left” is rooted in a fundamentally atheistic idea, the notion that human life is NOT the result of Divine action on a cosmos which He created, but is instead the product of inchoate, impersonal, inanimate forces — call it “natural selection,” “evolution” or whatever you like — and that therefore a human being is no different and has no more “rights” than a pig, a goat, or cow.
This fundamental atheism, as I’ve already pointed out, flies in the face of the fundamental philosophy that animated the civil society out of which our republic arose. It also underlies all of the wedge issues that exist between conservatives and Leftists in this country.
Take, for instance, the issue of sexuality, which the Left has largely succeeded in converting to be about “gender.” As I have argued many times elsewhere, sex is not a dirty word; it is a biological imperative; one is born either male or female. The Left, however, does not want to believe in a biological imperative put in place at the beginning by the Creator, and so they have adopted the term “gender.” This in fact refers to classification categories in the grammar of human languages, which may have something to do with sex — as, e.g., in Hebrew — or may not, as in certain other languages in which the gender categories are “animate” and “inanimate” (cf. e.g. the Ojibwa language).
The advantage of making the conversation about “gender” is that gender is mutable, while sex is not. For instance, the common German word for “girl,” mädchen, is of neuter gender, as opposed to Frau, “woman,” which is feminine.
Or take “same sex marriage,” an oxymoron which, well within my living memory, would have been impossible to utter only a few decades ago, when “marriage” was defined as “the legal union of man and woman as husband and wife” (American Heritage Dictionary, 1969). Once we’ve redefined marriage, we can declare it a civil, not a sacred, institution. Then we can declare that any possible coupling can be blessed with the civil privileges that were always accorded actual marriage as a stable institution to provide the best environment for child-rearing and companionship between the sexes.
Or take abortion as one more such issue. The Left has come down four-square behind the notion that abortion should be legal, indeed, paid for by the state, for a whole host of eugenic purposes to prevent the coming into being of umlebenswertes Leben and its concomitant nutzlose Fresser (a term so contemptuous that it’s not possible to render it completely into English), whose “quality of life” we, in august authority, judge to be so poor that it ought to be denied.
And this, of course, automatically leads to euthanasia, as again other people deem to judge the “quality of life” for the aged and infirm for them.
The only path back from the brink, the only way that we can, in fact, unite the country and “make America great again,” is to be trying to reconstruct the civil society based in the timeless truth of Biblical morality.
Otherwise, we are doomed to many more Charlottesvilles, as the Brownshirts battle the Red Guards.
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