What follows was taken from a Facebook posting that is being passed along as a chain letter. Since I will no longer post on that venue I will rant here in the quiet of my blog.
"It is possible:
For all of you who aren't sure, it is possible to be gay and Christian. It's also possible to believe in God and science. It is possible to be pro-choice and anti-abortion. It is equally possible to be a feminist and love and respect men. It's possible to have privilege and be discriminated against, to be poor and have a rich life, to not have a job and still have money. It is possible to be anti guns and still believe in one's right to defend one's self, family, and property, it's possible to be anti-war and pro-military. It is possible to love thy neighbor and despise his actions. It is possible to advocate Black Lives Matter and still be pro police. It is possible to not have an education and be brilliant. It is possible to be Muslim and also suffer at the hands of terrorists. It is possible to be a non-American fighting for the American dream.
It is possible to be different and the same.
We are all walking contradictions of what "normal" looks like. Let humanity and love win.
(The author is encouraging copy/paste if you like. If you share, only our mutual friends will see the post.)”
Of course, the author, the true author, is buried deep in the lineage of this post and to determine who wrote this nonsensical piece of tripe would be akin to tracing my family tree back to the first of my lineage. I won't bother with that exercise, but since I’ve nothing better to do let’s look at the statements independently.
- It is possible to be gay and Christian – Certainly, a general enough statement that would suggest you can believe in the trinity, or that Christ died to cleanse us of our original sin, and there is hope of eternal life in heaven, while still being gay. The variations of the Christian faith mean there are churches that will welcome and accept you, but there are probably an equal number of Christian churches who would condemn you. The question is how do you want to practice your faith and your sexual orientation in a manner compatible to your mental health?
- It is possible to believe in God and be a scientist – There is nothing about a belief in God that would prevent you from being a scientist. This is not a contradictory statement. For a millennium science was safeguarded and advanced by the religions (Islam, Hindu, Buddhist, the Catholic). It is only recently that some scientists have abandoned the notion of a God, declaring themselves atheists, and have made it a crusade to discredit the idea of religion and the potential for a divine being as creator of the universe. As far as I know they have theories, but little else to either establish or prove beyond reasonable doubt the impossibility of God. It is also a relatively late development for some of the fundamental Christian churches to condemn aspects of science they found not in keeping with their beliefs, setting up the either or battle we see played out today. So for the individual choosing science as a career, the question is do you choose atheism as your church?
- It is possible to be pro-choice and anti-abortion – No it is not. Not within the current use of the terms as widely understood. Within the current context, the left has chosen to identify themselves “pro-choice” rather than “pro-abortion” I assume to avoid the distaste of so obvious a meaning suggesting a woman has a right to kill a living thing like her fetus. If you assume that choice = abortion is true, then you must agree that abortion is a viable choice and cannot therefore be anti-abortion for you have agreed it is a woman’s choice. You can certainly believe a woman has some choices and be anti-abortion, but you would not be aligned with the current agenda of the “pro-choice” movement seeking unlimited “on demand” federally funded abortions. What you can be is anti-abortion and pro-forgiveness.
- It is equally possible to be a feminist and love and respect men – Perhaps for a moderate who does not embrace the full concept of feminism, but we never hear from the moderates do we? We hear from the Lena Dunham’s of the world who use feminism as a club to beat men over the head with. The basic principles of the Feminist Theory are[i] 1) the relationship between men and woman has almost always been unequal and oppressive, 2) all known societies have been patriarchal, and 3) all major social institutions have been characterized by male dominance. As in any political movement there are variations on the core tenants, for example, liberal feminists believe reform is possible, radicals do not, and socialists bring a third aspect into the equation. But in all cases, they tend to believe it is the man’s fault that inequality exists, and they could be right, but if you hold only one side to blame then where is the respect?
- It's possible to have privilege and be discriminated against, to be poor and have a rich life, to not have a job and still have money -- What the heck does this mean? It appears to take political agenda phrases and appropriate the terms to obfuscate their intent to make a nonsense statement we can all feel good about but in reality, it does little to reach a common understanding.
- It is possible to be anti-gun and still believe in one’s right to defend one’s self, family and property – Right! With what do you defend one’s self, family and property if you are opposed to guns? An axe? I doubt very few people are opposed to the principle of self-defense of themselves, their families or their property, but by supporting a position of anti-gun (rather than limited gun controls) you are saying you believe it is a State’s responsibility to protect you and you will limit your own options to hand tools and smooth talking.
- It's possible to be anti-war and pro-military – of course it is, but why believe in the military if you don’t believe that war can be justified? This is purely an illogical, but emotionally appealing, idea that finds its justification in the horrible way American society and the political activists of the 60’s and 70’s treated the soldiers, sailors, marines and airman who answered the draft and went to fight an unpopular war in Southeast Asia.
- It is possible to love your neighbor and despise his actions – a nice thought, certainly in keeping with the teachings of the Jewish and Christian religions, but not so much Islam. The question is how do we teach this? It does not appear modern society has embraced the concept of love and action being two separate (as in unrelated) activities.
- It is possible to advocate Black Lives Matter and still be pro police – the attempt to say these are not contradictory positions speaks to the illogic of most of these statements. The BLM movement, in its position statement, says “Black Lives Matter is an ideological and political intervention in a world where Black lives are systematically and intentionally targeted for demise. It is an affirmation of Black folks’ contributions to this society, our humanity, and our resilience in the face of deadly oppression.[ii]” In their actions, they have been actively engaged, either through advocating for or execution in the targeting of the police for assassination. If you believe the government is actively engaged in the targeting of blacks for elimination and agree with their principle belief, then to support the rights of the state, as carried out by the police, is fundamentally flawed or hypocritical. You can’t have it both ways… You can’t on the one side support an organization that calls for the killing of police and at the same time say you are pro-police.
- It is possible to not have an education and be brilliant – How would you or anyone know you are brilliant if you are uneducated? The trap in this statement is the liberal assumption only the state can educate you; with the implication if you don’t have a certificate from some institution you must be uneducated. The teachings of David Thoreau should have taught us that education occurs throughout our life if we choose to be open to it. If you really wanted to correct this statement it should read “It is possible to not have a degree, but still be brilliant.”
- It is possible to be Muslim and suffer at the hands of terrorists – of course it is, but the statement is only a contradiction if you believe the only terrorists in the world are Muslim, otherwise it is just meaningless.
- It is possible to be a non-American fighting for the American dream – The whole idea of “the American Dream” is an enticement to rest of the world to come to America, an approved path to citizenship is to join the armed forces, just as it was in the ancient Roman Empire, so this is not a contradiction. It would be a be less up-beat but more accurate to say “It is possible to be American and despise the American Dream,” but that would not be keeping with the intent to show “it is possible to be different and the same”
It is interesting when we abandon the common language to make up the meaning of terms so we can feel good about ourselves, but in abandoning a common definition of language we destroy the ability to reach a common understanding. We seem to have two options for a meme here:
Remember it is possible to be an Apple and an Orange, we should let hope and change work for us.
Or as I would like to suggest, it is possible to accept the differences in others and not demand they become like me
Unfortunately, that doesn’t seem to play as well in the progressive movement as the tripe they seem to put out for themselves.
Just my opinion, for what it's worth.