10 May 2016

Wishing black were blacker

One of the nastier aspects of our politics is the need some have to hate the other party at all times in all things and at all costs. It drives our political discourse into the dirt and degrades us all.

For instance, I have seen a series of posts in my inbox of people condemning Trudeau for not accepting help from Russia and the US. How dare he not accept help in this crisis. Then it came out that Trudeau was acting on the advice of the fire crews actually fighting the fires. Extra help would not be helpful. The crews would start interfering with each other. So, in other words, Trudeau asked the opinion of the experts and acted on their advice. He did what he was supposed to do.

But point that out to some of these people and they still want to hate him. Apparently, he should have acted against the advice of the experts. And should that have backfired, then what? condemn him for ignoring the advice of experts?

I believe I have made it clear that I don't like Trudeau, and I oppose many of his policies, but I can't fault him in this case. He has done what he was supposed to do. He does enough wrong to provide plenty of material for us to oppose. There is no need to oppose him when he is not wrong. Stop standing for parties, and start standing for truth. Listen to CS Lewis writing in the heart of the Second World War:

"Suppose one reads a story of filthy atrocities in the paper. Then suppose that something turns up suggesting that the story might not be quite true, or not quite so bad as it was made out. Is one's first feeling, 'Thank God, even they aren't quite so bad as that,' or is it a feeling of disappointment, and even a determination to cling to the first story for the sheer pleasure of thinking your enemies are as bad as possible? If it is the second then it is, I am afraid, the first step in a process which, if followed to the end, will make us into devils. You see, one is beginning to wish that black was a little blacker. If we give that wish its head, later on we shall wish to see grey as black, and then to see white itself as black. Finally we shall insist on seeing everything -- God and our friends and ourselves included -- as bad, and not be able to stop doing it: we shall be fixed for ever in a universe of pure hatred."

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