My oldest brother was a “Conscientious Objector” during the Vietnam War. To this day, he counts this achievement as among the finest accomplishments of his life. To hear him explain it, very few who were not official members of the Society of Friends were able to garner a “C.O.”; but he did. And now, all these long years later, my brother lives by himself in a little cabin on the edge of Virginia woods near the Blue Ridge, and has been a vegetarian for 35 years. His is a rather lonely life with no family, no wife, no kids.
His was the Class of 1971.
Not too many years ago, I was golfing with a family friend, a kindly old gent, who also had a son who graduated in 1971. “That was a bad year to have a kid graduating from high school”, he said.
I’ve never forgotten that statement. It was made whistfully, in quiet resignation. This old friend’s son had shriveled over the years from alcoholism, and became a homeless drunk, who wandered in and out of rescue missions in the city. When we were golfing with him, the old man he lived less than two miles from these filthy shelters–, in a beautiful home that bordered the golf course we were playing. You could tell the old man’s very being ached for the choices his son had made. And now his son –Class of 1971– was one of those pitiful, destroyed men that wander around the streets, muttering and peeing on themselves, spittle trickling from the edges of his mouth, reeking of filth and disorder.
Oh, the screwy, serpentine paths that family trod; The old man always drove a brand new Buick Park Avenue, and his wife (who tragically died of a brain aneurysm in the early 1980’s) was absolutely beloved by everyone. The old man sat on the Board of Directors of one of the largest banks in our state, for a time. The other three kids (who were younger than the one that wound up a street waif) turned out perfectly normal; But what was it about this oldest son that caused the boy to cave in on himself? Like my brother, he never went to Vietnam; he had glorious opportunities, but he rejected them all. Why? What was the reason?
It was the same thing that provided the taproot for my brother’s quest for a Conscientious Objector status, and living alone in the woods: His life is a living rebellion against his Dad.
Yep, he rebelled against a gentlemanly, loving father, who really only wanted to provide well for him and his siblings. He rebelled against the material comforts, preferring the liquid ones. He rebelled against the traditional family, and now lives with his own inner demons as company.
Did I mention that both he and my brother are rabid atheists– and liberals?
Which gets to (in a rather round-about way) the point of all of this: Most liberals that I have known are either rebelling against their Heavenly Father, or their Earthly one. And they cannot countenance people that don’t join them in their rebellion.
Evidently, we have an artist in our midst named Aaron Sorkin, who, among his other glorious credits, helped to produce one of the most banal, predictable pieces of Hollywood vomitica in recent years “The West Wing”. We are to further beatify him, I guess, for his screenplay for “The Social Network”. Boy, did Mr. Sorkin let out a cerebral belch today, when reacting to the latest episode of TLC’s “Sarah Palin’s Alaska”, in which Mrs. Palin and her father head out into the Alaskan frontier and hunt caribou:
I don’t watch snuff films and you make them. You weren’t killing that animal for food or shelter or even fashion, you were killing it for fun. You enjoy killing animals,”
Huh. Now THAT’S profundity. Mr. Sorkin (-what a name, eh?) is positively Aristotelian. Sarah Palin is making “snuff films”. For those not up to the erudition and panache of Sorkin, he’s referring to the genre of films that purport to show the real murder… of PEOPLE.
I will not take time here to examine the inability of a swanky Hollywood A-Lister to differentiate between human murder, and hunting; but I will point to what I saw in the latest edition of “Sarah Palin’s Alaska”. I saw simple, tender, love and reverence of a daughter for her very vibrant (but aging), Dad.
It was joyous to watch. Really. You could see Sarah’s Dad still in his role as his daughter’s mentor, helping and advising her throughout the hunt–, and you could also watch as Sarah was adjusting to her role as a middle-aged woman concerned about her Dad as he journeyed with her. Does this make her presidential? I don’t know, but I know it makes her a magnificently-raised human being.
Only a liberal could watch that episode and see a “snuff film”. And, as I say, I will reckon that Sorkin hates either his dad, or his God, or both. And he absolutely DETESTS the thought that a strong, successful, engaging, conservative woman can have what he likely can’t: a relationship with her Dad that transcends the pettiness of a lifetime together. Sarah LOVES her Dad. And her Dad loves Sarah.
In the liberal world, all dads are essentially worthless scum. They’ve created an entire worldview (and public policy system) that rejects fatherhood, both earthly and divine. Isn’t it interesting that the last two liberal Democrat Presidents didn’t even have fathers to speak of? Isn’t it interesting that these same two disastrous leaders use the Christian religion as a photo prop? Remember Bill Clinton’s 60-pound bible he was lugging around after his Lewinski mea culpa?
No, Mr. Sorkin’s blathering tells us more about him than it educates us about Sarah Palin.
Oh: And I love you, Dad.