When Grief Veers Into Obscenity

Jonah Goldberg built up quite a deposit of good will with his classic book, Liberal Fascism.  In my estimation, his account is now overdrawn.  He and certain other editors of National Review have modeled a distinctly (and repellently) smug variety of political cultivation in recent years.  The journal’s founder, William F. Buckley, Jr., played the “snobby elitist” to the hilt, of course—but Buckley’s public persona was indeed something of an act.  Toward the end of his life, he typed up a personal response on letterhead to a rather importunate query letter of mine and signed it: not something I can imagine any of the New Guard doing.  In him, the elitism was genuine superiority diluted with noblesse oblige.  In this lot, the sporadic gestures toward popular culture (intended to stir a supercilious smile) conceal the blunt contempt characteristic of royalty gone a-slumming.

I began with these comments because I am going to unburden myself of some strong opinions about the Parkland adolescents who very overtly displayed coarse behavior for CNN’s delighted cameras.  In a piece published by Mr. Goldberg last Thursday, people like me are advised to consider themselves the lowest of the low for criticizing youths caught in the throes of grief.  Words were used in the column which William Buckley would never have touched, and which—once again—typify the new elitist’s tawdry bid for a moment of proletarian, pop-cultural “hip” (like Hillary Clinton’s “nothing-burger).

With no apologies to Mr. Goldberg, I contend that it is in extremely bad taste to carry on publicly as some of these teenagers have done.  True grieving happens most profoundly in private.  Soldiers like my father-in-law who saw real combat never want to talk about their experiences.  On the other hand, people who in fact were far from the line of fire and have little to mourn are the very ones who rush before an audience and fume volubly about the enemy’s wickedness, never breaking off a sentence or groping after a word.  I have seen the boy named Cameron on several clips now—his face and voice have indeed proved difficult to avoid lately—and a more eloquent Cicero is scarcely to be found in his peer group… but grief does not speak in torrents of rehearsed eloquence.  Neither does it spill its rancor on people far from the crime by drawing associations of a highly politicized nature.

As cameras rolled, the boy in question flung at a United States senator—Marco Rubio—the preposterous and insolent charge that Rubio’s mere face brought back images of a killer staring over the barrel of a gun.  Again, with no apologies to Mr. Goldberg, I will say that if this boy had seen the bore of a weapon waving in his face days earlier, he wouldn’t be around to see anything else.  (Or if he had indeed watched it weave right before him without firing, many victims could have wished that he had grabbed the thing and pointed it into the ground.)  Naturally, the extravagant claim made on behalf of his imagination’s vigor was pure hyperbole.

What exactly is going on inside of millennials?  What strange cogs and sprockets move their emotional responses?  Since when do you register grief by turning your back on the killer and forming a political lynch mob marching to the script of the world’s paparazzi?  Since when do you respond to a senator and one-time presidential candidate who comes to commiserate by verbally and (one might say) globally spitting in his face?  How does this help any parent bury a son or daughter?  Traumatized survivors have often tormented themselves with the question, “Why them and not me?” in the past.  No longer, apparently.  Now they hire an agent to book gigs on Oprah and Kimmel.

I’m going to say it, even though the Goldbergs of the world will think me a heartless swine for doing so: this conduct is boorishly childish to the point of obscenity.  Gun control has nothing whatever to do with my verdict.  I dare to say, rather, that some in this forthcoming generation—perhaps many—want a lesson in manners and common decency… and, obviously, they’re not going to get it from the “conservative” likes of Jonah Goldberg.  The pampering, apparently, will continue without end.

There’s nothing worthy of indulgence in a seventeen-year-old who, say, springs up at his mother’s funeral, curses the minister up and down, and screams, “Stop with all this religious crap!  If there were a God, I’d still have my mom!”  The outburst would be understandable, but it would remain unacceptable.  Hopefully, a father or near relative would order the child to quiet down and either seat himself or leave the building—and the order would be peremptory.  Not only do such displays selfishly deny to others a chance to absorb the loss; they also plunge those who author them into an unproductive state of mind that can only prolong their anguish.  Adults are supposed to recognize as much and to nip incidents like this in the bud—not to misidentify them as sacrosanct and nudge them to center-stage.

And the crucifixion choreographed by CNN was nothing like a church service for a child’s mother.  For pity’s sake… parents are trying to come to terms with knowing that their children will never graduate from high school. Perhaps birthday presents are lying hidden in closets that will now never be opened. Has any consideration at all been paid to the misery of these people? I know we’ve all pretty much lost our minds… but have we not even the faintest vestige of taste and decency left?

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The Unarmed Teacher: A Notion Where Insult Competes With Insanity

The objections I’m hearing to the prospect of classroom teachers and professors carrying a concealed weapon all appear to me to cluster somewhere between the ludicrous and the insulting, with substantial overlap into the insane.

I am assuming for the purposes of this post that the sources of objection are sincere.  That’s a careless assumption, in many specific cases.  Whether you want to believe it or not, the endgame for political insiders who stake out the “gun-free campus” position is usually the confiscation of all privately owned firearms.  No one seems to recall a speech that candidate Obama gave in summer of ’08 wherein he voiced a yearning for a national police force.  Leftist ideologies often let their admiration for Castro and Ché come spilling out, and sometimes even show their love of Mao.  A police state where mere ownership of a purse-sized revolver can get you ten years in the Re-education Camp… that’s what makes them salivate.  Then, of course, they will be able to construct their human ant farm without any reactionary troglodytes mounting a resistance.

But let’s put those Men Who Would Be God—those Hitler hearts wrapped in a Stalin hide—to one side.  Let’s stipulate that certain well-meaning people really do cringe at the notion of teachers bearing arms.  What are their objections?

That people who abhor guns would be forced to carry them.  Perfectly idiotic.  Nobody has proposed that teachers be forced into arming themselves.  Nobody ever would so propose, with the exception of a malign spirit who wanted to churn up protests with false premises.  We’re imagining here that the position’s opponents speak in good faith.

That teachers would accidentally shoot innocent bystanders or themselves due to ineptitude.  Obviously, anyone who carries a gun should be trained in its use.  We don’t let people drive cars without training, either.  But say, in an extravagant scenario, that some panicking school marm starting squeezing off rounds wildly at the rafters: this in itself would be a distraction and a deterrent to the assailant.  Might a bystander be hit by mistake?  Well, that’s true even if Green Berets are charging the shooter.  Should we let him fire at his ease just because return-fire runs the risk of going astray?

That teachers would become premier targets if the assailant knew some of them to be armed.    Oh, no—we teachers certainly don’t want that!  Let the bastard shoot some of our kids before he turns to us: maybe help will arrive in the meantime!

That teachers will create a frightening atmosphere for students if they’re packing.  Again, no one has suggested that educators have a Glock holstered beside their cell phone in some kind of tool belt, and no one who wasn’t trying to pull the debate off track would ever make such an inane suggestion.  Yet the serious proponents of this objection (and, incredibly, there seem to be many) apparently believe that an armed teacher would have a different look in his eye, or that fear of their teacher’s possibly being armed would make students quail at their desks.  Great point.  Let’s leave the darlings undefended, instead, and not even whisper the word “gun”.  If we stop our ears, shut our eyes, and loudly repeat “nah-nah-nah” incessantly, then everything is sure to be fine.

That teachers will in fact develop a more threatening attitude if the power of life and death hides somewhere on their person.  Insanity and offensiveness meet here in equal measure.  God Almighty!  If this is what you think of your child’s teachers, how can you allow toxic chemicals in chemistry class?  Why do you allow a coach to drive the team bus?  Do you suppose that teachers stand back and bet on the winner when two students are fighting in the hallway?  And if this is your estimate of human nature, why in heaven’s name do you want to surrender all such deadly force into the hands of elite government entities whose members’ heads are already swollen to the bursting point with power?

I hear nobody proposing my own objection: that weapons are very hard to conceal except under a trouser leg, and that some roughneck punk could easily learn to spot the bulge and disarm the math teacher bent over another student’s desk—all just on a stupid lark.  I’d like to see weapons issued that would not fire unless they read the legal owner’s palm print on their handle.  An alternative, someday, might be to have the corridors roved by a robot that would deploy immobilizing force upon detecting an elevated heat signature and powder traces—or maybe similar technology built into the ceilings like the sprinkler system.

Even so futuristic a solution, however, would have multiple vulnerabilities.  (What defense do you have in parking lots and on playgrounds?  What if a police officer is detected while returning fire?)  I have to believe that the ultimate sincere objection to an armed educational staff is a neurotic, denying fear of harsh realities—the ostrich’s proverbial head-in-the-sand reaction.  It is painful to see so many adults in positions of authority exhibiting such childish (and, frankly, craven) behavior.  Even if their persistent denials were not costing us children’s lives, they would still inspire a sickened response in the pit of any sane, responsible adult’s stomach.  Blunt paralysis in the face of danger is deeply discouraging.

The Spirit and the Flesh: Adversarial Allies

If a man asks you for food, take him to a sandwich shop and sit with him to eat.  Don’t give him a wad of bills or a card to draw infinitely upon the food bank.  You do not serve the man in him with such charity—you stifle his humanity by making your sacrifice at the altar of the Stomach.  You proclaim that the end of life is to stay alive.  You heard the word “hungry”, but you did not hear the man who said he was hungry.

If a man tells you that his child is sick and needs medicine, take him and his child to a doctor, and buy what medicine is needed.  But do not give the man’s family endless draws upon your account to buy whatever medicine they may need at any time in the future.  Charity without a setting or boundaries is an unlimited worship of the god Health; and in serving that god, you declare that life is about nothing but health, always health.  If the child is cured for no other reason than to stay cured, then he might as well grow on a stem in a garden, like a vegetable.

And if a man comes to you saying that he is so tired of life that he yearns to end it, do not give him a free pass to an amusement park or introduce him to a wild leaf that sends the bored mind into ecstasy.  The god of Escape can keep bodies alive as well as food and medicine sometimes—but what lives is only a body.  Try your best, rather, to show the man what weariness of life teaches about life: that it ends in nothing if one sets one’s goals within its boundaries.

Charity is not about feeding the hungry, but about removing hunger as an obstacle to a higher mission.  Sickness is another obstacle—and the purpose of life is not to avoid being sick, any more than it is to avoid boredom.

We always teeter on the brink of getting this wrong, because lavishing people with food or medicine or amusement is a deed, a measurable behavior… but the spirit has no measure.  The spirit is a negative presence, we might say.  We cannot bestow it as we would a sandwich of a Z-pack.  We can only remove obstacles to it.  Saving a person from death only gives him the opportunity to live; we cannot know if he will use his opportunity well.  Refusing to fuel a lie only gives the truth an opportunity to prevail; we cannot know if that truth will bring most people to insight or despair.

Health, happiness, prosperity… they all end when life ends.  And if life ends tomorrow, then it might as well end today—at least if it is to hold nothing for us but animal satisfactions won from a body that declines to torture us.  But for a person who has found purpose in life, even bodily tortures—sickness, tedium, poverty—are a small price to pay if they are a means of the spirit’s reaching its end.  A father will live on one meal a day to feed his child.  An artist will take the money that might have kept wood in his fireplace if it will buy paint and canvas.

What kind of person are we producing in our world today—a plump vegetable immobilized in a garden, or a visionary who happily suffers privation for the sake of a higher end?  I think we all know.

 

No More Utopian Claptrap, Please, to Address Existential Atrocities

I’m not interested in using this space (or any space in my life) to demonstrate to the world what a morally superior being I am.  I could protest the sadistic carnage inflicted routinely upon pencils as we grind them down to nothing, one after another… and you wouldn’t have thought of that, and your very shock would satisfy me that my conscience is lightyears ahead of yours… but I’d also be wasting your time and mine.

So for all the garbage about ending gun violence by confiscating guns.  In the first place, we ARE talking about the confiscation of all guns.  Every proposed half-measure I’ve heard either reveals a hopeless ignorance of firearms or else conceals the advocate’s ultimate agenda.  Personally, I see no need to own an assault rifle and have no affection for the things; but if the objective were to concentrate upon the most efficient means of committing mass murder, I’d much sooner go after handguns.  They’re infinitely easier to hide and to handle in a crowd, and they would prove far more difficult to grab from the muzzle-end and point harmlessly into the ground as the assailant is neutralized.  Likewise for all the idiotic chatter about magazines: with a minimum of practice, anyone can learn to switch out nine-shot clips filling the pockets of a hunting vest at lightning speed.  And again, with handguns, you could pack half a dozen fully loaded weapons easily on your person and not have to worry about reloading until you had squeezed off fifty to eighty rounds.

So let’s admit that, if an effective ban were possible, it would have to include all firearms of any sort.  What would happen as soon as the law was passed?  The outlawing of guns would produce two immediate and inevitable results: law-abiding citizens would be unarmed, and the newly illegal weapons would become extremely desirable to criminals and extremely profitable for black-market dealers.  A lot of the energy currently channeled into selling illicit drugs would shift to gun-running.  Cops would come under tremendous pressure to sell off some of the fruit of their raids—and just one bad apple on a local police force could provide a conduit for dozens or hundreds of weapons to enter the underworld.  Another kind of rotten apple in uniform would be ever so tempted to become a streetcorner tyrant, assured that the life-and-death power riding on his hip could elicit pretty much any favor he wanted from those on his beat.  I’m not knocking the boys in blue… but they’re made of flesh and blood.  A confiscation of firearms would turn us into Mexico overnight, with so much gang violence and police corruption that we would have to declare martial law and essentially wage a civil war.

But why might we not, instead, look like England or France, where private ownership of guns is largely confined to the rural farmer’s fowling piece and where shootings are almost unheard-of?  Because European countries do not have wide-open two-thousand-mile borders; because European population centers are so cramped that a dozen pairs of eyes would certainly see you carrying a weapon from the boot of your Austin scrunched in along the sidewalk to your fifth-story flat; because European criminals have developed other deadly means of imposing their will; and because the European rank-and-file don’t possess the means to purchase much of anything off the black market (almost half of Germany’s Turkish “refugees” live exclusively off the guaranteed minimum income doled out by a lunatic government).  And Europe also doesn’t have three million weapons already adrift in the private sector, by the way.

Hey, I have no affection for the AR-15, as I’ve said.  Go ahead and confiscate them all: make my day.  But your round-up will accomplish absolutely nothing in terms of reducing school shootings—will indeed probably initiate a series of better planned, more deadly events.  I’m convinced that the only reason every punk psycho chooses an assault rifle for the prosecution of his rampage is because of their mystique… and with regard to the origin of this mystique, is anyone among the gun-grabbing crowd interested in discussing the role of Hollywood and the “entertainment” media?  I thought not.

I was telling a colleague yesterday that I am hearing commentators discuss the Israeli method of securing schools—i.e., reducing and rigorously policing points of entry and egress—for the first time.  Yet I checked my enthusiasm in mid-sentence.  I’m glad that Israel has effectively eliminated schools as targets… but any time you create a specific design and follow a specific protocol, you expose yourself to being disastrously outwitted.  A determined terrorist (as opposed to a dumb punk) will use your routine against you, for you have made yourself predictable.  The best defense is actually an irreducible element of the unpredictable—of chaos.  In our schools, I don’t see how this element can be anything other than the presence of an unknown number of faculty and staff carrying concealed handguns.

The critics of such proposals strike me as the most unhinged participants one hears in this cacophony of screams and accusations.  The very thought of armed teachers somehow stains the mission of education beyond redemption, even if the guns are concealed.  Here we draw uncomfortably close to my satirical protest on behalf of pencils.  If you really believe that your child’s teacher may be tempted to go Wyatt Earp on a bad day, then why would you trust him in the chem lab with toxic chemicals?  Why would you trust him behind the wheel of a bus?  What if he decides to gun his truck through a mass of students compressed in the parking lot during a fire drill?

There was similarly insane resistance to pilots protecting their cockpit by carrying weapons after 9/11.  You don’t trust your pilot?  Then why are you in his plane?  A couple of years back, a depressed young pilot nosed his passenger liner into the Swiss Alps, killing all on board.  At least he didn’t have a gun!

My vote is that we not attempt to construct Utopia on the bodies of sacrificed children as if we were breaking eggs to make an omelette.  The brave new world without homicidal weapons or homicidal thoughts can begin some time after I take down the butcher who’s waving a rifle at my child.  As a matter of fact, it really might begin right now.  Why don’t we start by outlawing the slaughter of unborn babies in their mother’s womb?

Big Brother’s Heavy-Handed Promotion of Interracial Couples on Popular Media

You may have noticed that about fifty percent of couples in all very recent TV commercials are interracial.  No, I haven’t actually tabulated the results of a weekend survey… I have more pressing things to do.  But the percentage is well over ten percent, or even a quarter.  I’ll stick with approximately half.

That’s pretty high.  In the restaurants and grocery stores of the world where I live, one out of every two couples are not interracial.  I realize that my neck of the woods is far off the main road; I realize, even, that in places like San Francisco, acquiring a mate of another race is taken as proof of one’s moral superiority. I’ve known for some time that in cultural enclaves where no one believes in yesteryear’s God and where social transformation exerts a mystical magnetism, people seem always to be seeking ostentatious new rituals to demonstrate their spiritual purity. Sometimes other people are the victims offered on the progressivist altar—as when, say, you cozy up to someone because of her skin color without giving a second thought to her feelings.

But San Francisco is not a cross-section of American life: not just yet.  In flyover country, couples whose racial past is very visibly different compose, I would guess, well under ten percent of adult pairs.  Probably under five.

The advertising industry’s estimate of the typical, then, is so distinctly at odds with what one actually sees in most places that one must ask, Why the miscalculation?  It appears deliberate; and for that reason, it doesn’t appear a miscalculation at all, but a move calculated against coordinates other than reality’s.  What are these coordinates, and why are they being used?

Are private-sector peddlers of cars, pizzas, smartphones, and home-improvement items eager to encourage us to mate and marry outside our race?  Why would they feel called upon to fulfill that mission?  Social engineers, of course, have a very obvious interest in dissolving ties of family, community, religion, tribe—of anything that competes with Big Brother for our abject allegiance.  Those who belong to nothing will always be easy recruits for the State’s all-encompassing march into a transformative future.

Okay… but why are for-profit enterprises carrying so much water for Super-Nanny’s bath of brainwash?  What other reason for it could there possibly be than that they mortally fear some sort of bad press or boycott labeling them unsympathetic to the goal of stamping out racism?  They don’t want any trouble… and so they get out in front of the shakedown, hanging the right colors on their doorstep before Big Brother’s goons come around demanding to see their papers.

So how long before overtly gay couples start turning up on Home Depot ads?  How long before Chevrolet commercials end with a declaration that their workplace has a zero-tolerance of sexual harassment?

I don’t like this.  I have utterly no problem whatever with a blond Jack marrying a Japanese or African Jill (as long as they’re not doing it just to make one of those West Coast statements).  My wife is either 1/16th or 1/32nd Cherokee; Elizabeth Warren informs us that either of those percentages would be significant.  I’m not arguing that people should marry within their race.  I am questioning why depictions of our lives projected in our media are being distorted to reflect somebody’s version of Shangri La.  If the intent is to influence the impressionable (i.e., the young) toward pairing up with those of different races, then we are NOT being left alone to pursue the mate of our choice: we are being tactlessly nudged—the more impressionable among us, at least—into the ethic of ostentation, of showing off one’s moral superiority by selecting a mate of a certain appearance.

How is this any different from the Cult of the Blond that prevailed when I was a boy, and that induced so many women to dye their hair?  Answer: that was a silly, superficial cultural prejudice, while this is yet another theater opening up in the vast war against culture itself. The social engineer’s futuristic spaceship needs cadets, and the training program has begun.

Orwell Has Arrived

A German woman of a certain age named Mona Maja published an impassioned plea on YouTube last week for her fellow citizens to join her in a peaceful demonstration.  The emotion in her voice was driving words out at a rate I couldn’t quite keep up with—and my German is none too perfect, anyway.  On top of that, she was filming in a suburban back yard, apparently, that admitted frequent streams of background noise.  Yet this much I can assert: there was no incitement to violence whatever in her speech (unless anxiety over the high probability of being spat on, raped, or knifed on the city sidewalk is incitement in the form of a call to self-defense).

Nevertheless, YouTube removed the video after it had attracted about 150,000 views on the grounds that it was “hate speech”.  (The video was republished on Facebook, where it has topped half a million views: we’ll see how long it is allowed to run there.) If your daughter is murdered by a Turkish “refugee” and you organize a march to protest the passivity of the police, then you are a hate-monger and rioter in today’s Western world.  That’s the Orwellian society that is threatening to overtake us on this side of the pond, as well.

Netflix has lately been trying to force down my throat a documentary blaring the praises of feminist ambulance-chaser and courtroom stormtrooper Gloria Allred.  Also salient on the docket of recommended choices are opinion-flicks featuring Michael Moore and Robert Reich about how to repair the capitalist system they so love (hint: it begins with outlawing the profit motive).  Something called Dirty Money keeps trying to run a trailer every time I log on; the series tag promises to reveal how corporations are laundering money for drug cartels and otherwise outbidding Satan for the rule of Hell.

That’s all fine and dandy… but I’m still awaiting the exposé about how Eric Holder’s DOJ covertly ran guns to said cartels in order to get so many innocents slaughtered that the public would cry out for the Second Amendment’s repeal.  (The gambit was partially successful; a dozen kids were murdered with the guns at a birthday party in Juarez, for instance.)  My eagle-eye is still cocked, as well, for the bold new docu-drama that will follow a progressive-utopian Secretary of State as she abandons her personnel to an overseas mob and later sells massive amounts of uranium to a nation whose leadership once vowed to bury us.

Still on the lookout, too, for the first of Dinesh D’Souza’s many documentaries to make the Netflix roll call.  Still waiting for ANY of them to appear.  D’Souza, you may recall, did hard time over an unwitting violation of an obscure law governing political contributions for whose infraction only minor fines had been levied before. Courtesy of that forementioned lion of justice, Eric Holder.

Last month we were told to lament and deplore the repeal of Obama-era codes claiming to enforce “Net neutrality”.  Let’s see: YouTube is closed to any non-progressive point of view, individualist appeal, or inconvenient news flash: Netflix… closed; mainstream television… closed; Facebook and Twitter… as apt to close suddenly as the Symplegades.  But the Internet remains dangerously reflective of actual public opinion.  It’s lopsided.  Views that garner about 15-20 percent approval on a good day do not receive a “fair”, half-and-half manner of exposure.  Yeah, we really need to fix that—to “netfix” it.  And anyone who says otherwise should be indicted for hate crimes and sent away for a couple of years to rethink his position.

Welcome to what we called, in my youth, the Free World.

Why Are Aliens Represented as Morally Superior?

Patient Seventeen, recently uploaded to Netflix, is the only documentary I’ve ever seen that succeeded in shaking me up over the subject of alien abduction—and I’ve seen a few such flicks, as well as many an interview.  Most abductees leave me uncharitably thinking in categories of a) the female wallflower of a certain age who has sexual fantasies, or b) the nerdy male straight out of a Gary Larson cartoon for whom playground bullies have assumed supernatural stature in his traumatized memory.

And some such “victims” surely fall straight into these categories, along with the more vanilla one of attention-seeking hoaxer.  Then again, if real victims of extraterrestrial home-invasion exist, one can well imagine why they would not come forward; for my categories, as I say, are not very charitable—and neither are they exclusively mine.

Patient Seventeen, however, doesn’t fit the pigeonhole.  He’s a strapping fellow who rides a motorcycle to his construction jobs, and who wants very much to believe that the minute metal fragment in his leg does NOT have an unearthly origin.  Once the late Dr. Roger Leir removed the object, though (whose entry had left not a scratch that Seventeen could recall), the tests were conclusive.  A total of thirty-six elements had combined to form the alloy, many of them extremely rare on earth and several quite dangerous to manipulate.  Zinc isotopes, furthermore, were present that not only could not have originated in our solar system, but could not even belong to our corridor of the galaxy.

Seventeen is never named.  Dr. Leir died within weeks of operating on him, and the lab technician entrusted with the fragment has oddly vanished; so he appears to be facing a future of psychological battles more or less alone.  I think he just might make it: he’s a fighter.  In fact, the most impressive part of the film for me was Seventeen’s confiding to the camera that he had succeeded in physically resisting his abductors during the most recent assault and came very close to smashing in some extraterrestrial skulls.  “They’re alien gangsters,” he responded when asked what he would like to tell them.  They break into people’s homes and lives unasked and treat them as insects (he used the image of wicked boys employing a magnifying glass to smoke ants).  They deserve the same reception that any other home-invader invites: a bullet.

This attitude was as refreshing to me as Seventeen’s raw account was unnerving.  I’m sick of the assumption, so often floated in popular serials like Ancient Aliens, that otherworldly visitors must automatically be considered our superiors in every way.  Though I’ve learned some interesting and useful facts from following AA (I now know a smattering about Gobekli Tepe and Puma Punku), segments frequently conclude with starry-eyed claptrap on the order of, “We have to make contact with our visitors so that we can discover our destiny.”  Umm… what?  As much as you lot might like to account for all gods in all mythologies by having recourse to ET’s flight log, these beings are not gods.  If they conduct the sorts of experiment that surviving victims like Seventeen describe, they’re much closer to devils.

Why do we believe that a smarter being is a better being—or why do we believe that physics and engineering are the only kind of “smarts”?  Among our terrestrial scientists, we no longer tolerate whimsical, invasive tinkering even on Rhesus monkeys or white rats… yet our godly visitors are wantonly kidnapping us and filling us with toxic transmitters. Is that really the sign of a superior being?  Assuming that such things are happening in any of the reported cases, they do not bespeak an advanced moral intelligence: quite the contrary.  If we ever manage to verify that abduction is a real phenomenon, then the next order of business must be our figuring out how to make the perverted little bastards behave themselves.

One of Steven Greer’s veiled interviewees (in another documentary) insisted, I recall, that the US government was staging abductions so as to have panic at a constant simmer and ready to be brought to a boil.  That I can well believe.  If “ufology” teaches us nothing else, it proves that our elected officials are lying to us on a massive scale.

It could also be that our uninvited guests are playing “doctor” with us because they are inflexibly programmed robots and, therefore, are incapable of fine-tuning their manners to the particular situation.  If that is so, then… then maybe we ourselves should go running a little less hastily into the embrace of the “transhuman” hybrid said—by Ray Kurzweil, Al Gore, and other crazed prophets of the dark side—to represent our future.