In my previous essay, “The Case for Christian Secession”, it was mentioned that the political climate within the United States is like that of a severely dysfunctional marriage. Indeed, within the US, the two sides of the political and cultural divide can be seen as a husband and wife “team” who loath each other, but who nevertheless still live and work together under one roof. And yet when looked at from this particular analogical perspective, it soon becomes evident why there is a need for a “divorce” between traditionalists and progressives within the United States, and perhaps even in the West in general. After all, just ask yourself if divorce would not be the best option for a married couple who had the following types of disputes between them:
1) The wife, who is pregnant, wants to abort her child, but the husband is adamant that this not happen and he believes that doing so would be murder. As such, both the husband and the wife fight over this issue, with each side using any legal means at their disposal to get the other side to submit with their point-of-view.
2) The husband wants to have a good number of children, but the wife thinks that any more than two kids is over-breeding and a threat to the environment. In fact, one of the reasons that the wife wants to abort her current child is the worry about global over-population, whereas the husband thinks that such a reason is outright madness.
3) The husband wants to send his children to a Christian school; however, not only is the wife against doing so, but she does not even want her children to engage in any type of pro-Christian practices in the secular school that she demands her children actually go to. To make matters worse, when the husband wants to take his children to a traditional church on Sundays, the wife mocks this practice and calls the husband’s beliefs antiquated, stupid, and even bigoted. She even makes rumblings about how the tax-exempt status of churches should be removed.
4) In addition to the above, not only does the wife mock Christianity and call it barbaric and foolish, but she inexplicably endorses another religion which the husband feels is a genuine threat to the stability of the household, and which he has legitimate concerns and complaints about given that he believes that certain practices within this other religion simply do not comport with the attitudes of his household or his neighborhood.
5) The husband teaches his children about the glories of Western Civilization, the value of free speech and masculinity, and the benefits of traditional family norms, whereas the wife teaches those same children that Western Civilization is an evil to be opposed, that free speech is hate speech, that masculinity is toxic, and that traditional family norms are bigoted. Furthermore, whereas the husband sees no undue shame in his heritage as a Western European man, the wife is constantly telling the children that white Western men are an oppressor class that needs to be opposed by all the other alleged victim groups which exist outside that class. And finally, whereas the wife preaches the virtues of social justice and socialistic policies to her children, the husband louds notes that the former is an oxymoron and the latter ideas do not work.
6) When speaking to his children, the husband promotes chastity and the beauty of a life-long marriage between a man and a woman, whereas the wife tells her kids to explore their sexuality and to have as many sexual differing partners as they want. Then, when the husband and wife confront each other about this difference, the wife calls the husband deplorable while the husband thinks of his wife as sexually immoral.
7) When one of the couple’s children is feeling confused about their sexuality and their gender, the wife wants to have the child immediately start taking hormones in order to prepare for the eventual gender reassignment surgery that is soon to follow, whereas the husband thinks that pumping hormones into their child and mutilating the child’s body as an answer to a mental health problem is sheer madness and absurdity. Instead, the husband encourages mental health treatments for the child. Thus, there is no agreement in the house as to how to handle this serious issue.
8) When it concerns their property, the wife invites nearly anyone in, and if she finds squatters in the yard, she lets them stay on the property as a sanctuary; the husband thinks this is insanity, but every time he tries to remove the squatters, the wife yells at him to stop. At the same time, the husband wants to build a fence to protect the property from people entering it illegally, but the wife opposes this idea at every turn.
9) The husband believes that if his children want an allowance, then they need to work for it, and if they do not do so even though they are able, then the children will not receive any allowance; by contrast, the wife wants the children to receive an allowance regardless of what they do, and, in fact, she wants to take a larger chunk of the husband’s paycheck for both herself and the children regardless of whether any of them do household chores or not.
10) The husband wants to teach his children about guns, and he owns a number of guns, which he values as tools to protect his home from intruders as well as being tools which help to protect his liberties from outside forces; the wife, however, is appalled by this whole idea of “gun ownership” and she is continuously nagging the husband to get rid of this gun, or that gun, and she also tells her children that no one needs guns as they are both dangerous and unnecessary.
11) On their property, the wife’s main focus is recycling and making sure that the house is eco-friendly, whereas the husband views such behavior as almost pathological. Instead, he wants to exploit all of his property’s resources in order to improve the standard of living for both him and his family. As such, the husband and wife are constantly at odds concerning how to use the resources that they have on their land.
12) The wife uses outside influences to pressure and force the husband to accept her dictates as opposed to using persuasion to convince the husband of her point of view. And the husband, fed up with these non-democratic tactics, starts to employ them as well in order to get his own way within the household.
13) Finally, even when it comes to where they get their information about what is going on in the larger world, the husband and wife cannot agree; they argue over the interpretation of facts, and view some facts in a completely different light. Furthermore, given their differing presuppositions, they cannot even come to an agreement about what is true or not. This causes endless disputes in the house as each spouse thinks that they are right, while each spouse also views the other as delusional and irrational.
Now, as implied earlier, if these kinds of disputes really existed between a husband and his wife, not only would they be looking for a divorce lawyer as quickly as possible, but they very likely never would have gotten married in the first place! And yet, when it comes to the United States—a country which is itself largely divided about the aforementioned issues into two opposing factions—we are supposed to think that, for some reason, remaining “married” as a country is the best course of action rather than seeking a divorce. What a preposterous notion! And yet, as stated, for some reason it is the idea of separation which is treated as ridiculous and seditious, rather than it being treated as an obvious answer to a cancerous marriage that should have ended a number of years ago.
Now, while a legitimate worry could be raised concerning when such secessionist “divorces” would ever stop once they start, the fact is that the differences noted above, and thus the differences within the United States itself, are both broad and fundamental. And that is the key. For the problem is not that there is disagreement about some minor tax policy or infrastructure project, but rather that the differences are at the deepest worldview and moral level, thus meaning that they affect the things that people hold most dear. Indeed, these differences strike at the very heart of what people consider their core beliefs and values. So these are not minor secondary differences that can be lived with and civilly argued about in the political sphere; rather, these are disputes about issues that have, essentially, what amounts to a religious and sacred significance for both sides of the political divide. This is why these disputes are so furious and why they will not and cannot be resolved through political means. Nor can these differences just be lived with by either faction, at least not in a country where the two opposing parties are of significant size and political influence, and where each side views the other as an existential threat; indeed, if one side was just a small minority within the country, then that side would have strong reasons to accept their reduced status in peace, but since both opposing factions are so large and powerful, then no peace can be had so long as each opposing side sees a reasonable chance of political and cultural victory. Nor should this be surprising; factional and identitarian politics are, after all, merely war by non-violent social, legal, and cultural means.
Thus, to return to the marriage analogy for a moment, the point is that if the differences between a husband and wife were no greater than which Christian school to send their children to, or whether they should buy five guns or six guns for their home, then no separation would be required, for such differences can be compromised on without ongoing conflict, for both the husband and wife are ultimately in agreement at a fundamental level. By contrast, if, as listed earlier, the differences between a husband and his wife occur at every level, on every vital topic, and are fundamentally at odds with each other in a broad and unyielding sense, then no such marriage could work without endless conflict and strife. And as it is with such a marriage, so too with a country or empire that suffers from the same sorts of divisions.
But the marriage analogy can be carried even further, for what happens in such a toxic marriage when the issues within it remain unresolved and are allowed to fester for longer and longer periods of time? Well, a number of potentialities can occur. For one, a certain side of the marriage—be it the husband or the wife—might “win” in the marriage, with the other spouse simply giving up the fight and succumbing to the other spouse’s wimps. Indeed, such a toxic marriage, if it was to remain as a marriage, would only find peace through the total subjugation of either the husband or the wife. And at present, this is no doubt what each political faction, both left and right, hopes will happen to the other in the cultural and social civil war which is occurring in the West today. However, it is also possible that as time passes, more and more rage gets build up in each spouse, until the rage boils over and the spouses become physically violent with each other. And in a country, this means civil war. Or, another possibility is that both sides eventually accept the need for a divorce, but because the assets that they own have become so numerous, and because the animosity between them has been allowed to grow for so long, then all these factors make their separation much more raw and arduous then it otherwise needed to be; furthermore, how much pain was experienced between them that could have been avoided had they separated earlier? A great deal, no doubt! And so, the fact is that no matter what outcome occurs, it will be an outcome that is undesirable and even immoral; and this will be all the more true given that a potentially messy future situation could have been largely avoided through a quick and early divorce. So, an amicable and early divorce—so long as the issues under consideration really are irreconcilable—is a much better option than a divorce that is occurring much later than it needed to.
Finally, perhaps the last objection to consider against this analogy is that a country is not a family, and so the analogy is not strong. But isn’t it? After all, is not a country a group of people together in a specific area who are deciding how to move forward with their lives, their money, and assets? And is not a family very much the same thing, just on a smaller scale? Indeed, is not a country merely a composite of many families, with each family still wanting their country to be the best that they feel it should be for their children, just as each individual family wants its house to be the best that it can be for the family’s children. So the analogy, in this respect, is not far off. The fact is that a country is, in many ways, a family; and just as there sadly comes a point where the members of certain families need to fracture and go their separate ways, no longer being one unified family, so too is it the case that sometimes the members of certain countries need to fracture and go their separate ways, no longer being one unified nation, but rather being many disparate nations within one country. And, arguably, that time of separation has come for the United States of America, and perhaps for the West in general.
Anno Domini 2017 04 10
Non nobis Domine, non nobis, sed nomini tuo da gloriam.