Always the masters of the warfare of vocabulary leftists have, much to the chagrin of many, captured the designation of ‘progressive’. This is with the clear intention of suggesting that any who oppose them are thereby ‘regressive’.
One of the main problems with progressives is that in their utopian desire to create the perfect society they are impatient and don’t allow society to develop. Like little children viewing the sweets at the checkout they know what they want and they want it ‘Now!’ and will have a tantrum until they get their way.
It is this infantilism, when linked to the unswerving certainty that they are indisputably right, that leads to the horrors of ‘progressive’ tyranny. In order to build the new utopia everything in the past has to be thrown away, baby with bathwater. Progressives have a constant yearning to try to start afresh from Day One.
In rejecting Christianity our progressive elites have also rejected the Christian virtues which not only made society bearable but made it safe. Virtues have been replaced by values; unfortunately values are no societal defence when those values are infinitely malleable.
One of the unacknowledged results of this wish to start de novo is that the baby inevitably gets thrown out. In deposing Christianity as the main formative influence on Western culture and replacing it with an inchoate belief in emotion as the standard by which all events and statements are to be judged we have ‘progressed’ to a situation in which society has left itself wide open to harm, all in the cause of not wishing to give ‘offence’.
Scorned by progressives as an attitude of mind which leaves the individual wide open to oppression the Christian virtue of humility has all but disappeared from society.
This has more important ramifications than the incredible rudeness of contestants on reality television. The disappearance of humility is seen in individuals and bodies putting forward their ‘demands’ rather than requests. A request opens the way to discussion and give and take; a demand opens the way to confrontation and conflict. The disappearance of humility has opened the door to a different, more selfish and divided society with its concomitant dangers.
Consider Muslims who eagerly cry out against ‘religious discrimination’ when police target them for investigation. This has led to a situation where police in the UK have ignored monstrous Muslim rape gangs operating throughout England. The Muslim religion is front and centre in a worldwide plague of violence, yet rather than sacrifice a bit of time and precious dignity to help ensure the safety of the most vulnerable of their neighbours Muslims demand that everyone reinterpret reality in order to safeguard their tender feelings.
We find police assigned to protect high-crime neighbourhoods being castigated for racism when they question youths from an ethnic minority. Yet it is inevitable that more youths from ethnic minorities are questioned by the police than any other group. The highest crime areas are those with the highest proportion of ethnic minorities and most crime is committed by young men. Those who are viewed with suspicion in such areas are inevitably going to be mainly young men from ethnic minorities. Yet the police are denounced as racist for stopping and frisking the suspicious, when the truth is the officers are trying to protect the majority of non-criminals in those mainly ethnic minority areas.
We find illegal immigrants demanding their ‘rights’, whilst breaking and thus endangering the very laws that sustain those rights for all.
We find homosexuals activists who deliberately, viciously and wickedly attempt to destroy the businesses of those who, in conscience, cannot regard them as they demand. In the UK the latest instance is the attempt is to force Ashers Bakery in Northern Ireland to bake a cake carrying propaganda in support of homosexual marriage. Ashers have been ordered by the Equality Commission for Northern Ireland to apologise for giving offence to the homosexual rights activist who ordered the cake, and to give him hard cash to ameliorate the ‘offence’ caused.
All these are instances of selfishness, the point blank refusal to live graciously in a world of difference where some people have beliefs and customs which do not accord with ours. Instead we have the demand that everyone conforms to a particular set of minority beliefs. The progressive has a specialised concept of give and take; we do the giving, they do the taking.
The good of the majority and the good of the individual are often in conflict. Unquestioning following of the general will is a recipe for regimented tyranny. Unswerving insistence on the rights of the individual is a recipe for chaotic anarchy.
For the individual to be willing to make sacrifices for the good of the many he has to be able to value the other and be willing to make sacrifices for the good of the other. Humility sometimes demands the strength to place the well being or conscientious beliefs of others before one’s own. Paul advised us in I Corinthians 8:7 ‘Be careful, however, that the exercise of your rights does not become a stumbling-block to the weak’.
Only the strong can be truly humble; perhaps this is why progressives make such strident demands for conformity.
When a society throws out Christianity it throws out more than bell-ringers and evensong, it throws out harmony between people.