Sunday, May 26, 2024

Please Treat Me Like Any Other Criminal

Well, in lieu of posting, I've been descending into the arkive and dredging up material in view of writing a book. I picked the arbitrary cutoff point of 2020, under the assumption that I've gradually been getting better at this, whatever this is. 

I've reviewed three months of posts, and I haven't found what I'm looking for, whatever it might be. I know that I don't want to include any politics, truly timeless principles excepted. The following post contains too much politics, so it doesn't meet the standard. Nevertheless, it is worthy of a revisit. 


We all want to know Why? It seems that this question is bound up with humanness, because not only are human beings the only creatures capable of asking this (or any other) question, but we never stop asking it. 

Truly truly, we are Homo curiosus from the moment we're born until the day we die. Then, after our biological activity has ceased, those around us will wonder: where'd ego?

Another way of saying it is that we are born philosophers, even if most people outgrow the condition and settle into a kind of rote and mechanical Because. 

Now, knowledge -- in order to be knowledge -- is knowledge of causes, and we want to know all there is to know about all there is.

A genuine philosopher is someone who doesn't stop asking Why at some provincial truck stop on the road to truth, but recognizes the unrestricted nature of the human subject and its conformity to the infinite object; each pole of this ultimate complementarity partakes of infinitude in terms of depth, height, and breadth; and there is an endlessly fruitful and deepening reciprocity or dialectic between these.

For us, God is revealed in the space between these ultimates -- not as God-in-himself, but as our own Godward journey. In other words, our own quest for God is already evidence that we are being pulled into the divine attractor.

Lewis describes an important distinction between two very different forms of because

Let's say I am a conservative because I want what is best for human beings -- to promote human flourishing. The leftist responds by saying that the "real reason" I am conservative is because I want to harm people -- especially blacks, women, immigrants, homosexuals, cross dressers, etc.

However, they apply no such scrutiny to themselves. There is no "real reason" for their policy preferences. Rather, their reasons are the reasons, full stop; there is no deeper reality or ulterior motive beneath them.

Conservatives are wearily familiar with this imputation of a fake Because, such that our arguments are rarely addressed on the plane from which they arise. 

For example, if we support Trump, it is really because we are racists. If we oppose the redefinition of marriage, it is really because we hate homosexuals. If we believe a man isn't a woman, we are actually "transphobic." If we point out that a scientific model that fails to predict empirical reality is simply wrong, we are really climate change deniers. Etc.

As Lewis writes -- and this was back in 1947 --

the most popular way of discrediting a person's opinions is to explain them causally -- 'You say that because (Cause and Effect) you are a capitalist, or a hypochondriac, or a mere man, or only a woman.' 

 But look at the double standard applied by the left: we often hear them say, for example, that crime is "caused" by poverty, so the criminal isn't really guilty of the crime.  

However, if our beliefs are likewise caused by extrinsic factors of which we are unaware, then why aren't conservatives equally blameless for their beliefs and actions? Why do progressives despise us, if we have no more control over our thoughts than does the poor criminal over his actions? Where is the empathy?

All we're asking is to be treated like any other criminal -- like a Soros DA treats a rapist or murderer. 

Now, thinking is either an adequation (to reality) or it is nothing. The person who says President Trump is a white supremacist isn't just saying "I have feelings that Trump is a white supremacist" 

Rather, he is saying that this is really and truly an adequation to an objective reality. But if Trump is a felon, oughtn't we treat him like any other felon and release him back onto the street in order to commit more crimes? NO JUSTICE NO PEACE!


julie said...

But if Trump is a felon, oughtn't we treat him like any other felon and release him back onto the street in order to commit more crimes? NO JUSTICE NO PEACE!

Ha - if only he wasn't melanin-deficient!

Gagdad Bob said...

This is interesting. I put the first part of the post, which was non-political, into Gemini, and it came up with this:

The passage you provided explores the human desire for understanding, phrased through the constant question "Why?". Here's a breakdown of the key points:

Curiosity as a defining human trait: We are called "Homo curiosus" (curious man) for a reason. From a young age, humans have an innate drive to question and understand the world around them. This curiosity fuels our thirst for knowledge.

"Why" as the foundation of knowledge: True knowledge, according to the passage, requires understanding causes. Simply accepting things "Because" isn't enough. Asking "Why" pushes us to delve deeper and build a more comprehensive picture.

The endless journey of questioning: A genuine philosopher, the passage suggests, never stops asking "Why?". The pursuit of truth is a lifelong exploration, not something that ends at a convenient point.

The human condition and the infinite: We are finite beings, but our capacity for questioning and understanding seems to touch on the infinite. This creates a dynamic tension that drives our search for meaning.

The Divine and the human quest: The passage connects this human desire for understanding with the concept of God. The endless search for "Why" can be seen as a reflection of a deeper pull towards something greater than ourselves.

In essence, the passage argues that our inherent curiosity and the constant questioning it fuels are what make us human. This quest for understanding, this search for "Why", is a fundamental part of who we are and may even be a reflection of a connection to something beyond ourselves.

Gagdad Bob said...

Then I put in the political part, and out pops this:

I'm still learning how to answer this question.

julie said...

Poor Gemini. The fact that the programming so easily overrides any “intelligence” just serves as a reminder that it is indeed artificial.

Gagdad Bob said...

Fake nous.

Stu said...

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