Something a little offbeat for you small-government types who may be feeling put upon with all the Jeb Bush 2016 talk. (Sorry for the click-bait title.)
It might seem strange to use a weird Japanese anime (animated series) as a metaphor for what America and small-government conservatives have gone through in the past few years. But I think it fits.
The anime series “Attack on Titan” (“Shingeki no Kyojin” in Japanese, literally “Advancing Giants” according to Wikipedia) takes place at some unspecified future time (the title of the first episode is “To You, 2000 Years In The Future”). Earth has been overrun by monstrous creatures called “Titans” – between 10 and 50 feet tall, they appeared out of nowhere and are bent on only one thing: eating humans alive. They are virtually indestructible, which has forced the remains of humankind (now numbering only a few hundred thousand) to crowd into a huge walled area. Even with high walls around them, though, the humans remain threatened by the Titans: They cannot go outside the walls (in fact, the King has forbidden it), and they live with the constant fear of Titans finding a way over, under or through the walls.
It’s fun, if you like post-apocalyptic animated monster flying-ninja middle-ages kind of things. I can genuinely say it’s one of the more offbeat and interesting things I’ve seen recently.
The story is allegorical in many ways. A constant theme is “freedom versus security” for example, or “duty versus survival”, or “self versus community.” But I noticed something else which fits the situation of Western conservatism.
Conservatism, and libertarianism, is “under attack” by powerful forces – forces that, in many ways, have us outgunned and outnumbered. Like humanity in the anime series, we have had to wall ourselves off and “give up” much of our territory to these forces. Anyone seen a conservative college professor since 1968? How about a conservative President since 1988? When was the last time you had an honest conversation about race in America without getting called a “racist?” Or a conversation about anything (marriage, education, unions) without getting called a “hater?” When was the last time you felt like this was “my country?”
And these forces are constantly on the attack. They can’t be talked to, or reasoned with. And they aren’t interested in compromise, or even anything constructive – they exist only to destroy.
And what they want to destroy is us.
Think that assertion seems a little overblown?
This guy in the New York Times thinks “climate deniers” should be stabbed through the heart.
This dingbat REPUBLICAN (Peter King, R-NY) thinks people like Ted Cruz are committing “governmental terrorism.”
Oh, by the way, Oprah thinks you have to die. Because if you’re a conservative you’re a racist and all racists must die.
And Leftie talk-show dipstick Thom Hartmann wants you to know that all Republican Presidents since Dwight Eisenhower have been illegitimate traitors.
And of course, who could forget everyone’s favorite Low Information Voter, the Obamaphone lady. Because, you know, “Romney sucks. Bad.”
I could go on, and on, but you get my point, I hope. This is what we’re up against these days. I don’t think comparing these people to inhuman monsters (allegorically, of course) is all that much of a stretch. Certainly they’re not interested in rational discussion. You’d have a better chance of persuading a junkyard dog to quit chewing your leg than you would of getting any of these people to calm down and seek honest common ground with you.
I don’t have an answer for this problem right now. I wish I did. If I come up with one, I’ll be sure to let you know.
Anyway, Attack On Titan is good fun (WARNING: It’s animated, but violent. NOT suitable for children.) Netflix has it on their streaming service, without commercials, or you can watch at Crunchyroll (Crunchyroll has much better subtitles.) Watch it if you want to see what unleashed Lefties can do to human civilization. (Programming note: If you want a good introduction to the tone and action of the series, you can try watching episode 7 first: “The Small Blade – The Battle for Trost, Part 3”. This has a nice synopsis introduction which will get you mostly up to speed, and then drops you into the middle of things. If you like it, you’ll want to go back and start at the beginning of the series.)