Thursday, October 16

Dispatch from Red America

From a Missouri man:
Socrates said: "An unexamined life is not worth living".

Okay, Red people, all together now: "YES IT IS!”
This may explain why I'm not a Red person.

One response:
The proud rejection of Socrates here is, honestly, what separates "Blue" and "Red" America (not that the Blues all live self-examined lives by any means, but that it’s not a point of pride if you call them on it). When critical thinking is treated like it is here, as if it were some namby-pamby, airy-fairy, pie-in-the-sky philosophizing that we don’t need to get by, it’s an insult, first, to the American tradition, to the pioneers who tamed the land and to the inventors and businessmen who took us to the peak of economic greatness—they all needed critical thinking to do that.

And you might say, well, yes, but not applied to their values. I’m not sure that’s true, but as far as Socrates’ words go, the second point is that knocking critical thinking about your values is, frankly, not in line with a love of God, especially in the Christian faith. Saying "I don’t need to check my head" is the height of pride. And pride isn’t the most deadly sin because it’s so rare, but for the opposite reason: It’s so common that we’re all guilty of it, most of us (to some degree) almost all of the time. Prayer helps fight it, but God gave us brains, too.

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