As a predictable outgrowth of the Self-Esteem Movement, this is the new normal. I notice a trend in conversations to allow for the fallacies of the masses to go unchecked, or to be blindly lauded because it's 'their choice'. True enough, God is pro-choice as evidenced by the existence of free will. We're called to make the right choice. And among our duties outlined in the Spiritual Works of Mercy are to 'instruct the ignorant'. Lest this sound haughty or self-glorifying, I refer to our collective Mea Culpa (have I gushed on the addition of the breast striking in the new translation of the mass?) It's a most gripping moment of unity for this Catholic, to stand together and proclaim our sinfulness and failure to live the glory which is possible as a Christian. We don't believe or proclaim that truth is distilled to a select few. The message of hope found in the Gospels is a tangible gift to humanity, and we're called to use the gifts bestowed upon us in time, talent and treasure to foster this hope among everyone around us.
The approach one takes in guiding other souls towards truth will likely match inborn temperament and the opportunities around them. God sends us the people we're supposed to learn from, as well as a few to teach, if we seek them. This seeking can come in the form of being open to new life within marriage, active ministry or outreach.
Humility is the key, and this comes at the price of pride. I pray to surround myself with people much wiser and more charitable than myself, in the hopes of being challenged.
Many would seem to disagree, and are increasingly demanding adulation and support for the most mundane acts while discounting any divergent views as 'ignorant'. If our double speak doesn't finally land somewhere meaningful, we send children into the world with nothing more than unmet emotional neediness. Erikson's position that our first psychological need is that of basic trust vs. mistrust is left hanging if we hear only applause. No one trusts a flatterer, and children are especially attuned to counterfit in personal exchanges.
|Being hassled by the man begins too early.|
Nowhere is this more evident than in conversations with power grabs disguised as compassion, equality or science. So you want to fund every speedbump of our brethren's lifespan with the confiscated earnings of successful earners, redefine the cornerstone of civilization (marriage), and take away all the good light bulbs? Feel free to plead your case, but do a favor and call it what it is: fascism. We're seeing the children of yore --- who not only received a trophy for signing up, they were never taught to examine their form on the court --- grow up and enter the public sphere with a hostile sense of entitlement. Challenge them to give you logic in place of huffing disdain, and may we always extend the grace and peace possible in civil discourse. America needs the tension between the hipsters and the nerds as much as it needs Christian morality, and we cannot relent in our preservation of individual liberty.