In the 9th grade, my best friend got sent to a remedial school. As the people he ran with became increasingly nasty, our paths gradually diverged, though not so gradually that I didn’t get involved in quite a bit of criminal activity. By the time we were 20, Max was regularly using meth and heroin. I left town around that time.
For years I was a bourgeois mediocrity, and although I never used intravenous drugs, I did some things I deeply regret. Finally, at age 26, I came back to town, straightened out, and went back to college. Max was on parole and had a kid by a girl he’d met in court-mandated Narcotics Anonymous. He was working a steady job and living with mother and child, though not married. They had a disgusting apartment, disgusting domestic habits, disgusting tattoos, and were always hanging around the same old disgusting townies—bicycle thieves, graffiti aficionados, pot growers and the like—but I wanted to be supportive of Max’s recovery, and would periodically come around to visit.
Like a lot of con-men, Max was always very slyly charismatic, a great reader of people, with that chameleon-like charm so inveterate of drug addicts. He was working nights at a big box store, and we had about two hours between my last class and his shift when we’d meet up and get coffee.
In the course of this fraternization, it began to dawn on me that Max had absolutely no remorse for anything he’d ever done. All his misfortunes were caused by his father, his step-mother, his baby mama, the cops, etc. He was incapable of seeing himself in any of his failings. With congenital scumbags, this is actually a type of resilience. It was as if he was a dog mistakenly reincarnated as a man, or else had the moral compass of a manipulative toddler, with the world as his mommy. He was always on a “side hustle,” invariably greasy and exploitative. Whenever some mark or accomplice was not being cooperative, the human race had failed him again.
Within a year, Max and I parted ways again. I saw through him, and he could sense it. The next I heard from him, he was back on the street. That was eight years ago. I’ve heard from him every few years since then. He’s been townie-homeless for most of that time, occasionally pimping, selling meth, doing crimes. Once, he stayed the night at his mother’s place, only to steal all her jewelry. He’s been living in the same town with his son all these years, and not seen him. He now blames the child’s mother for this, as if a small child should ever be brought near a gibbering stumble-bum.
About a month ago, I heard from Max again. He’s out of prison (for a robbery) and in an expensive rehab in a rural area. He tells me that his plan is to get back to his true calling—graffiti, and rapping. (Max is a 35-year old white man.) He also plans to parley a new career move (as a personal trainer) into a high-class pimping operation. He has a taste for the kind of garish, ill-fitting apparel favored by negroes and other trash.
Interestingly, Max tells me that he and his rehab mates are bussed every Sunday to a local evangelical church where there are “some fly-ass bitches,” mostly high school age, whom he plans to prey upon. He calls this “pimping,” “hustling,” etc.
Now, a Socratic question: how many indiscretions involving young girls do you suppose Max would have to commit before being turned away from the church? Should he even be there in the first place? My sense is that Christianity would inform us that Max must not be turned away, and that if he was, it would have to be some kind of exceptional exigency arising from the commission of real, tangible harm—preventible, but not prevented. That the good shepherd is unwary of the wolf is not a matter of controversy. And if a parishioner of this evangelical church Max is attending were to merely intuit his evil, this would be woefully unchristian prejudice.
All our moral training prevents us from taking evil seriously. Cultural touchstones rationalizing and glorifying criminality—meaning not the violation of statutes, per se, but transgression of the natural law itself—are ubiquitous. They live in our minds. When we don’t take them as morality tales, we take them as kitsch. The kitsch is more insidious. Trailer Park Boys, for example. We think that Trailer Park Boys is cute, that the protagonists are good at heart, modern-day Robin Hoods whom the system has simply failed. But Robin Hood never trafficked in drugs. He never robbed random, innocent people. Unlike Ricky, he wasn’t a deadbeat dad. And nothing in his story suggests that the system was to blame for his actions, to the extent that in a sense he had no free will. But that is what the viewer is expected to infer about Ricky and Julian.
This is nothing but poison in a spoonful of jelly. People like the protagonists of Trailer Park Boys exist, they generally lack the kindheartedness imputed to them by the TV series, and when we encounter them in real life and they ask us menacingly for a cigarette or bus fare, we apologize to them. That such latent aggression should simply not be tolerated is a concept we cannot even grasp. And the idea of treating an old friend—even a scumbag like Max—with ridicule or utter coldness likewise feels wrong somehow. This is not just cowardly. It is not just enablement. It is the most bedrock norm in our civilization, and it has been for an awfully long time.
The Christ story contains a great deal of uncanny profundity, and I suspect it’s a helluva lot older than 2,000 years. But Christianity—every denomination—is profoundly inconsistent in its application of ethical standards. Its one norm is blanket forbearance; its greatest sin is fury. Liberalism has taken this a step further and simply become explicitly pro-crime. But all these creeds are akin to Stockholm syndrome. They are the mother of every socially expedient falsehood, of cloying toleration which they conflate with peace and impartiality. First they stultify healthy emotional responses, next they accustom you to tolerate abuse. Judaism and Islam do the same, but then compensate their adherents a bit by instructing them to sublimate healthy emotional responses into various abusive subterfuges. None of this is godly.
The major innovation of Abrahamic religion is the proposition that, whereas the gods are capricious, God is morally consistent. But that’s not really how it works, is it? And what Christianity—and Buddhism and stoicism and Taoism—are all telling us is that injustice is just fine. Suck it up. It’s all in your head.
What kind of cosmic pimp is this?
Maybe all men have free will, and maybe not all of us do. Maybe God has one eye, or three. Maybe he is a pillar of cloud, or a kebab on a skewer. I have no way of knowing. I do believe in God, and I believe in the universal natural law. I just don’t think those words mean what we’ve been convinced they mean. The unregenerate are not worthy of grace. Humaneness is not a cure-all. And when evil and stupidity are flagrant, mercy and forbearance are wicked. There should be no umpteenth chance for scumbags like Max.안전놀이터-244토토사이트|사설토토|안전놀이터|토토|메이저놀이터|안전공원|배트맨토토|먹튀폴리스|스포츠토토|먹튀|먹튀사이트|먹튀검증