Let me tell you a tale of the times in which we live. Let me tell you a fable so, so . . . fabulous that you will scarce believe it.
Well, not a fable, really. More like an illustration, an analogy, a parable with a point. No, not exactly that either. What am I trying to say? I want to give you all a little supposition that shows us how sometimes people get so bound up in their subjective realities, trapped in their feels, that the objective truth doesn’t register with them at all any more. You know how Yogi Berra used to put it? Chacun voit midi à sa porte?
In this highly subjective and emotionally muddy world of ours, the feelings don’t care about the facts. But as Ben Shapiro likes to put it, the facts don’t care about your feelings either. And when you consider the outcome of the inevitable collision between these two non-caring realities, the realization dawns. The facts are rigid, unyielding, hard, granite-like. Not only do they not care, they aren’t going anywhere. The feels are oily, fog-like, wispy, but they are going somewhere — the way of the whistling wind.
This is just another way of saying that the year 2020 thus far has been nothing more than a temper tantrum, followed by a few months of gut sobbing. At some point you are going to have to get up and go downstairs to join the rest of the family. Grandpa, down at the end of the table, is going to look out at you from underneath his hedge row eyebrows and say, “That fix everything?”
So here is the illustration I was talking about.
Suppose that we somehow got to the point where we were debating the issues surrounding our responses to COVID. I know, unlikely, but work with me here. Suppose further that I had some kind of a national microphone shoved in my face, and I said something like, “You know, I have thought this one through. I have read up on it. I am confident that before all of this is said and done, Latah County here in Idaho will have no more than 25 hospitalizations, and no more than 10 deaths.” And you know, depending on what part of the country you are from this would seem like a really brash prediction, or in other places it would seem like a pretty safe bet. Latah currently has had no hospitalizations and no deaths. But my point here is not to debate any of the real numbers, but rather to illustrate another point, a different point entirely.
So just say that I made that brash prediction, while also saying that we needed to be done with lock downs and closures, and done with masks, done with all of that. I gave the whole thing the Bronx cheer. And I was very specific in my call. I predicted no more than 10 deaths. Count on it, I said. Take it to the bank.
Now here is where the illustration gets festive. Let us further suppose that after the epidemic had completely subsided, and we really were done with it, and we were in a position to count up the numbers, we found that Latah County had only six hospitalizations and three deaths. But — and here is the curve ball — let us suppose that I was one of those three. I had joined the choir invisible, I had handed in my lunch pail, I had assumed room temperature, all four hooves were pointing toward the sky. And let us say that I really died of COVID, not just with COVID, and that this tragic demise of mine due to COVID was not a foul canard spread about by my enemies. I really did clock out because of those little beastie COVID viruses.
You will have perhaps noticed that the event proved my prediction to have been true. I predicted no more than ten deaths, and three deaths is way less than ten. I predicted no more than 25 hospitalizations, and six is way less than that. So then, my research is vindicated, no? I am hailed as a prophet, no? No.
The Authority of Argument
Because we live in relativistic times, we no longer respect the authority of argument. We do not seek to prove things, but rather to score cheap points. And in the kind of scenario I described, it would be frightfully easy to score points. It would be frightfully easy to dunk on my predictions, even though they were entirely justified and vindicated in the outcome. The COVID denier died of COVID, hahahahahahahaha!
“But Jeshurun waxed fat, and kicked: Thou art waxen fat, thou art grown thick, thou art covered with fatness; Then he forsook God which made him, And lightly esteemed the Rock of his salvation.”
Deuteronomy 32:15 (KJV)
We are seeing what happens when a very wealthy people forget their God, and attempt to teach the next generation how to live without any reference to Him. We are seeing what a run-down cul de sac secularism is. This is what happens when you take a bunch of rich kids and you detach their education from the truth of God. What you get is pampered mindlessness.
And so here is the meaning of the illustration. Some will object that my illustration above was carefully contrived to have all of the facts fit my narrative. I was able, since the whole thing was hypothetical, to stipulate how many people were hospitalized, how many people died, and even the identity of one of those who died. How convenient, an interlocutor might sneer. These facts that don’t care about your feelings are all made up facts, are they not?
Zoom out for a hot minute. This is where the actual facts fit. I have been arguing for a full generation that secular education is going to end in chaos. It has to because it is either Christ or chaos. That has been the prediction, made repeatedly, over the course of many years. And now here we are. The train conductor is now walking up and down the aisle of our experimental secular train, chanting for us, “Last stop, Chaos!”
We cannot have been going where we have been going without eventually getting where we have gotten.
So to speak.