Grieving Porn

One of my favorite writers, Ilana Mercer, has a post up at World Net Daily called The Pornography of Public Grief, about the spectacle that is American grief-mongering after tragedies such as the one in Connecticut. Stating what she does demonstrates she is not concerned with offending our delicate American sensibilities (she is an immigrant), nor however, is she a simple provocateur.

She earned my respect more than 10 years ago as a standard bearer for Libertarian thought. It was a pleasant addition then when she wrote Manliness (not a miracle) on the Hudson after a flight was forced to land due to being struck by birds and earned her pro male stripes as well.

These issues highlighted in these two articles share a common origin that i try to tie together later. .

In Manliness she rightly observes, about the men of today, that:

This New Breed of Man can be observed in his natural habitat, at the supermarket. There, he will scrutinize products for trans fats

and

The modern, non-Sully specimen will often have a few spoilt, cranky kids in tow, and a papoose strapped to a sunken chest. He’ll be laboring to make the outing to the store a “learning experience” for the brats – one that every other patron is forced to endure.

This generic guy oozes oodles of psychological correctness and zero manliness. He never takes charge; he consults and cooperates. He’s not necessarily effeminate. Rather, he’s safely androgynous, and most certainly not guy-like in the Sully sense. As personalities go, he and the wife are indistinguishable.

It is too simple by half to assign the men described as above the label of beta, contrast them with alphas or betas with game, and move on. While that nomenclature may fit, its a self serving manosphere tendency to make that the end all be all explanation for, and inference from which we inform our worldview. Its way more complicated than that, and the other article contains information that is helpful in bringing it together with bigger trends.

The pornography of public grief in our country is almost as warped as the evil (not ill), mother-slaying, mass murderer responsible for the Sandy Hook carnage. There is very little dignity in the freaky spectacle of mass contagion – where members of the public turn professional mourners, flock to memorial happenings for victims they never knew and mill about for hours in the hope of being discovered by the master of ceremonies, the journalist.

[ ]

These ritualistic displays are symptomatic of our festering cultural commons.

The third reference I want to pull into the point I am attempting to make also comes from the same article about the public grief:

At the root of it all is the rejection of the existence of unadulterated evil. Rather than accept the reality of evil – s–t happens, live with it and be prepared to proceed against it – misconduct has been medicalized.

[ ]

To listen to the nation’s psychiatric and journo mumbo-jumbo is to come to believe that crimes are caused, not committed; that perpetrators – mere victims of societal forces – don’t do the crime, but are driven to their deeds by a confluence of uncontrollable factors: bullying, the availability of firearms, or an imaginary organic brain disease for which no scientific evidence exists.

I commented recently on Wapiti’s site that all forms of social pathology and resultant problems find themselves trending unequivocally correlated to something. I happened to be commenting on an entry he made about a woman’s claim regarding the famous dearth of good men. Ive since stumbled across more female bloggers writing descriptions of the man they want and decrying the fact that they cannot find one, while overtly demonstrating in those very words the reasons that these men do not avail themselves to these women. That’s something, not surely not THE something.

We can debate what something is. Feminism or female centrism may be something or it may be yet a manifestation of the elusive something. Decayed morality, physical and intellectual laziness, narcissism, rejection of absolutes, rejection of a higher power, all of these may be the something or they may be the manifestations of it. Who really knows? But these questions are not as important as the realization that everything in the basket of factors correlates with everything else in the basket.

Yet where are we looking? Anywhere but in the basket, because WE are in the basket.

What is it that drives our culture this way? An easy answer is the Biblical one where all of this is predicted. Good luck selling that medicine though, and besides, there is a sense of futility in the notion of bucking prophecy. People are themselves self perceived deity, people are running busily too and fro with forms of knowledge, all form of wickedness is loosed upon the earth. In ours and similar countries its a compelling case that the vehicle through which this is occurring is simply emotion. We have found a work around for God and His emotionless absolutes that are hard to take.  Some choose to reject Him fully, while others who claim Him claim The Personal Jesus aspect of Him which is full blown all emotion all the time narcissism.

Why else would people act out as Mercer points out when we have shared tragedies?

How else can women at once force men out of our natural places, then complain they cannot find men who are real men?

How else can we explain the ever expanding fascination with mental illness and the requisite assignment of blame on statistically unsupported claims about diet? This question especially applies to Christians who seem caught up in a quest for earthly immortality. How do we account for the fact that the authorities now say 1 in 100 kids are autistic? How many can step back and see now that claiming Asberger autism is used as a badge of honor of sorts, with parents perversely wanting that to be the case because it somehow imparts some form of specialness to their child? WHAT has REALLY changed?

We have. Not our food, not our brains, not the government, not systems and institutions. In fact those are a force that buttress the trends I touch on, and though seemingly disparate, these things, this weird melange I grabbed in a quick brainstorm could be expended infinitely like those chain emails with juxtaposing facts from the past that are cleverly written to shock us awake.

Look at the last part of the article about the airplane landing on the Hudson river and imagine men, grasping our responsibility with steely resolve, and women not reacting histrionically , rather, saying back to them like the copilot did.

Husband: “My home”

Wife: “Your home”

Damn Straight.

Rather, we have men and women wearing emotion, seeking empathy when when none is deserved or appropriate and seeking it vicariously by leeching horrific events like the school shooting. We are off.

ETA: Just in my morning surfing, after assembling the ginormous Barbie Dream House for my dear 7 year old, I came across several comments on several blogs where people chime in to say they “know about autism because THEY have a high performing Asberger child. Does anyone else see this as incredible? Can anyone see how self fulfilled government prophecy can be? Start running ads for a medication that treats a mental illness and I promise you the frequency of the illness will increase. Run ads saying that the odds of having an autistic baby are now staggeringly high, and couple that with just the right amount of verbiage in reports on Asbergers to give it something of a, lets say…..not necessarily a bad thing (who doesn’t want a genius?) and all of a sudden they are everywhere. Take a young child that is exceedingly bright, and start some form of treatment, counseling, medication, special school program, whatever, and guess what, the symptoms will rise to the treatment. This is a side bar to the blog entry but it is very compelling to me.

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4 thoughts on “Grieving Porn

  1. I was thinking about this today – it occurred to me also that society has a deep aversion to acknowledging the existence of things which innately challenge its idealisations. A central tenet of secular humanism is that humanity is ultimately capable of all good and that anything falling short of that must be because of manageable external factors. One person out of 300 million deciding to go postal cannot be a manifestation of true evil but rather must highlight a shortcoming in the legal structure designed to unfailingly prevent it. If only we can find the right gun laws and the right way of raising children we won’t have any of these problems, they think.

    The same goes for men and women. Anything not fitting the a priori assumption that men and women are exactly the same apart from a couple of organs must be a result of external pressure. Again, if we can find the right laws and the right way of raising children, girls and boys will grow up in complete inequality.

    As you said, it may not be the something, but it is surely related.

    The only valid kind of “humanism” is the tenet that Jesus Christ is the Alpha and the Omega; the true human, the last Adam. Only by Him can we await the day when everything will be as it ought, as he deems ought to be; hope in anything else will come to nothing.

  2. I realize that my sidebar about Asbergers seems an awkward fit, but think about this. At the advent of talk therapy, it was de rigueur for those of means to claim “my therapist told me”….a badge of honor was to have a therapist.
    I could have expounded on the Asbergers point to try and make it more clear as to how it fit.With all the Ad Council ads that the federal stimulus money can buy telling us to get in the shade when its hot and drink water and other banal things, its now 1/110 chance a kid is born with Autism and we are to accept that along with all the other psych BS we are bombarded with daily?
    Over time, as I read forums and comments, I have found anecdotal evidence that men and women love being included in things that seemingly set them apart. That’s nit news is it? Ive attributed SOME of game’s appeal to that in men.
    Increasingly women have bought into the medical/state complex regarding food and medicine. I see women claiming Asbergers children because it is indicative of, in many cases, a very high level of performance…..something special and unique. These claims I assert surely help account for the absurd claim that 1/110 kids are born with autism, up from 1/1000 or more a few decades back.
    All of this is part of the emotionalizing of our culture. I hesitate to call it simply the feminization of culture simply because its gone so long that these things are, in certain circles, seen as masculine virtue!
    Hence men and women making spectacles of themselves whenever there is a national tragedy.
    Empathy is the driver here, the more I learn about it, the more I see it as something that was once a gift from God gone corrupt by too much of a good thing.

  3. I only know a few people with any kind of autism, but one case in particular stands out to me as relevant. While staying with a friend’s family overseas, we visited a couple and their two children. After playing with the kids for a bit and then leaving, I mentioned to my friend’s mother “you know, I think he has quite severe autism” (referring to one of the children of the other mother). She was surprised that I had said it without any prompting, because she and her friends had been trying to pressure this particular mother to get treatment for her son for some time, but she only wants to believe he is “gifted”, without accepting that he is going to need some serious help with social adjustment.

    I honestly don’t know what the true rate of these things are. Another thing which has seen a ten-fold or more increase in incidence is allergies. I used to volunteer and a kid’s camp, and there would be food with peanuts etc and nobody used to have any problems. The one or two children with allergies just didn’t have those things. Now, they can’t prepare anything with peanuts because so many children are listed as having allergies.

    I myself have terrible allergies which neither of my parents had. I can’t say they make me feel special at all, but I wish I knew what was driving all these things. Maybe they are related.

  4. The pathology of allergies is much more clear than whatever exists for autism. Social disorder, etc. called autism is overdone in the opinion of many , who are far more learned on it than I am.
    The old saw about, if you want less of something tax it, and if you want more of something offer incentives…well, the incentives part has created thousands of pages of new conditions.
    Next door to us we have an autistic child, in the truest old school sort of way. Smart geeks and social outsiders, high achievers lacking spatial or social awareness…..I cannot get to autism with that.
    And I still tie it back to this something that correlates all of these things together.

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