Thursday, October 20, 2016

One can only hope …

… The University Bookman: Is a Christian Society Possible? (Hat tip, Dave Lull.)

Reno speaks a difficult truth when he takes on the point of solidarity. If a society is not unified, it is fragmented, individualized, and atomized—and so is left vulnerable to tyranny. A society that does not stand on solid ground has no foundation into which it might dig its heels. In his words, “Atomized, self-interested people are more easily managed than those united in a common purpose. They are easier to dominate than those willing and able to make sacrifices for the sake of a transcendent loyalty.” Time was that government reacted to the movements of the masses. But as a society becomes more fragmented the government no longer has a popular opinion to which to respond, and so pays attention not to the largest movements, but rather to the most raucous, which are easily confused with popular. Five men yelling can make as much noise as twenty men speaking; as Reno puts it, “We’re facing a crisis of solidarity, not freedom, and this crisis of solidarity foretells a crisis of freedom. Atomized, isolated individuals adrift in a deregulated moral culture are easily dominated, whether by political manipulators or the directionless leadership of mass culture.”

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