"Man, once surrendering his reason, has no remaining guard against absurdities the most monstrous, and like a ship without rudder, is the spot of every wind. With such persons, gullability, which they call faith, takes the helm from the hand of reason and the mind becomes a wreck."
— Thomas Jefferson, from a letter to James Smith, December 8, 1822
Of course, the people who most need to learn from that quote are the same people who will have no fucking clue what Jefferson was talking about, but that's America for you! Because reading is hard! Thinking is hard! Learning is hard!
Despite it all, our Founding Fathers did manage to get this country off to a pretty good start (well, the real Founding Fathers... not the fictional characters that so many politicians are using like magic bullets now-a-days). Sure there were a lot of inequalities, injustices, and other problems back then, but we were young. We had a lot of shit to work out. We had a lot of growing to do.
And, for a while there, things were going pretty well. Not everything got solved that needed to be solved, but we were moving in the right direction. And, while plenty more mistakes were made along the way, one could argue that we were trying. If nothing else, our hearts were in the right place.
But then things got fucked up. I don't know if its because we let success go to our heads... or starting looking at things as money issues instead of people issues... or maybe we just put the wrong people in charge of speaking for us... whatever the case, we seem to have lost our way. Businesses are more important than citizens. Wealth is more important than justice. Dogma is more important than freedom. Differences are more important than similarities. Ignorance is more important than truth.
And while I cling to minor victories in the face of the tempest of absurdities that tears at this country, I am slowly giving up hope that we will weather this monstrous storm. Entirely too many people have fallen to gullibility, idiocy, and hate. Many of them under the guise of faith in a country where faith is supposed to be tempered by reason.
Alas we have surrendered all reason and are now like a ship without a rudder.
Because reading is hard.
Because thinking is hard.
Because learning is hard.
Far easier to have people simply tell us what to believe.
Unfortunately, a great many of these people don't read, think, or learn either. They just make shit up... rewrite history... misrepresent people... ignore science... shun fairness... pass the blame...
At least I trust that's what's happening. Because intentionally making shit up, rewriting history, misrepresenting people, ignoring science, shunning fairness, and passing the blame... that would be evil wouldn't it?
And so here I sit on the 4th of July, our Independence Day, contemplating the stupidity and/or evil that challenges this nation. It makes it kind of difficult to celebrate the holiday, but a part of me is holding on to hope. Hope that eventually reason will prevail and we'll find our rudder...
Because when dumbfuck politicians continue to trot out our Founding Fathers to support their ridiculous arguments, people are going to eventually get curious as to who these people actually were. And let me tell you, Conservatives and Liberals alike are probably going to be surprised at what they find... especially when they start weeding out all the misquotes and fictitious garbage that's been attributed to thest historical figures throughout the years.
As always, the truth is far more complex and interesting than the out-of-context bullshit we're handed.
If only people would read, think, and learn to discover it.
Maybe one day.
Happy 4th of July, fellow United States of Americans!