Insanity Thrives

It is being said, that a droplet of water tells all about the ocean. Analogies exist in the realm of public life. Small occurrences, ignored by the headlines, can, if carefully dissected, reveal much about a global story. If that is the case, then easily grasped, seemingly minor events can attain significance well above the quick-take of those whose vision is clouded by their hurry.

Years ago, a small town in France has erected a statue to honor Pope John-Paul II. Judged by the sane standards, nothing is unusual about the plain memorial.

To follow the story, you need to strain your mind’s eye a bit. Imagine a man-sized “U” made out of stone. Turn it upside down and place it on a flat surface. The result reminds one of an open portal. Project in the space the “U” frames the Pope wearing a priest’s gown. So far, the picture does not contain anything disputed as outrageous. Indeed, if the image would be complete now, there would be no story.

Naturally, as you have guessed, there is more to come. Obviously, the “Polish Pope” is about as liked by left-liberals as communist parties’ value him. That equals the fondness leopards –with or without spots- demonstrate for spinach.

Now then, so far, the detail causing an affront has been kept from you. To proceed, reload the picture of the upended U with the Pope under its arch. As described, a symbol is missing from the scene. Yes, you got it! To complete it, insert a cross into the picture. Place it as an adjunct, on top of the arc.

Innocent souls might, at this stage, be wondering, where this tale leads, where the source of “trouble” might be hidden, when, why, where, the invisibly planted TNT is about to explode.

Well, the object of indignation is the rather smallish cross that crowns the edifice. It offends because it is a religious symbol. Thereby it violates the principle of the separation of church and state. Presumably, as do Christmas decorations, the crucifix could be an affront to Muslim migrants. The indignation provoked by insulting displays might prompt these to reject the symbolic pressure exerted upon them. This rudeness provokes ire, whereby the integration is hindered of those that seek protection from persecution.

Invoking a 1905 law of “laicity”, “free thinkers” demand the removal of the cross from the top of the effigy. That demand raises questions.

Clearly, the offending cross can be connected to the depicted individual who happened to be, due to his profession, a Pope. We tend to assume that Popes are often Christians and frequently Catholics. Both point to traits that are associated with the crucifix, which is their logo. Furthermore, a Pope’s activity seems to be nearly as closely tied to that sign as is the “swoosh” to Nikes.  If so, then, arguably, the crucifix is not an instrument of bellicose propaganda, but merely a detail of a depiction of a person and his “trade”.

Wags might raise questions. Often Popes wear a cross around their neck. What if that would be the case here? Would the court that ordered the removal of the cross from the top of the statue, decree that it be chiseled out? In that case, the trace of the removed detail would have to be covered. Preferably, with a paste that matches the material of the figure. If that would not be done, then a spot would remain and that might advertise the subject of objection. As such, it would draw more attention than the original would have if left in place.

Several responses emerged to solve the problem of the cross that made some cross. The latest is that the city’s administrator thinks of saving it by privatizing the ground on which it stands. In that case, the violation of the principle the court defended, would be inapplicable.

There is more. Both the Poles as well as the Hungarians are willing to extend “refugee status” to the expelled symbol. Proper structures to absorb and display the corpus delicti are planned. Solving the problem through “exile” is, however, not to everyone’s liking. To the left, it is unacceptable that either of these hated regimes –accused, in  “antifa”-style, of being (the wrong kind of) dictatorships- should get the cross. If they get custody, they will be able to pose as the defenders of freedom and democratic values.

However, if we extrapolate refugee status for a cross, then a scenario emerges that suggests caution. The logic that proscribes the Pope’s cross can be applied to all crosses on churches. In France as well as throughout Europe. (Protestants with the rooster on their towers will need to fear the wrath of animal liberationists.)

If all crosses are removed, then Budapest and Warsaw will have a difficult time to harbor the deported crucifixes. Do they have enough crossroads to house the objects that made the West’s leftists cross? The reassuring about a crusade against crosses to make church towers balled is that, Muslim crescents would remain unmolested. Acting against them qualifies as “racism”, and that is the charge “liberals” fear even more than “sexual molestation”.

Here the reader might smile at the stupidity, which generated a problem that sane minds could not have invented. Albeit ridicule might be in order, the “crisis” has a sad, a serious, and through its projected implications, even a menacing aspect.

The controversy points to a defect in our attitude and the resulting ways that shape public life. Many leaders are willingly handcuffed by political correctness. From that follows the denial major problems to avoid their solution. This evasion of reality is compensated by attempts to make the public concentrate on magnified trifles that wobble on questionable foundations. A paralyzing fear stifles public life: the resolute defense against genuine threats to our nations and to our culture might be called “nationalistic”, or “not inclusive”, perhaps “nativist”, eventually even “racist”.

Ridden by fear, the blabbering classes that control the press, the pulpit, the offices, the colleges, and government, resort to a ruse. To avoid the semblance of ineptitude and shaky commitment, while posing as the defenders of human rights and democratic values, they cut out of the picture they present, the real challenges faced by our civilization. Here again, a decisive, albeit unpleasant, determinant of our condition is underlined. Primarily, the advanced modern world’s enemies are not dangerous because of their strength. The peril comes from our internal weakness. It makes those responsible to protect our community reluctant to defend the common veal entrusted to them. That is because they are convinced that there is nothing worth defending here, nothing to be rejected there, and that, anyhow, we have entered the post-nation age of multicultural bliss.


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