Saturday, October 12, 2013

No, it's not beating a Dead Horse!

Against Inclusiveness: How the Diversity Regime is Flattening America and the West and What to Do About It 
Kalb, James 
(2013-08-16). Angelico Press. Kindle Edition.

This book may not be for everyone, but I enjoyed it immensely. James Kalb put the book out there that I would like to have written (with a couple exceptions). It is an all-out attack on Western Liberalism and its principles of diversity and inclusiveness; he offers talking points, if not strategies, for reclaiming the playing field. My guess is that he deserves to be ranked as a traditionalist and not as a neo-con (sorry, I couldn't resist!)

Most would ask why he didn't hold himself to a good article, rather than going on for 200 pages. Isn't he beating a dead horse? Who in their right mind buys into Western Liberalism and its phony inclusiveness anyway? Right? Read the book and you decide!

When Kalb talks about Christianity and Catholicism, I would think that Church leadership should sit up and take notice. Even before reading this book, I was thinking about our obligation as Catholics to spare our children public day care and schooling. I am wondering if we shouldn't do as was done in the 1950's and threaten parents with grave sin if they abdicate their responsibility and send children to public school. As I am powerless, outside the US, and not in the running for any position in the American hierarchy... people should not feel threatened by those words. Home-schooling and the transmission of traditional values must be promoted. Unless the traditional teaching orders come back in a big way, Catholic schools cannot afford to multiply as they once did (too expensive).

If you don't like my thought, contend with James Kalb and make a plan for renewing or recovering, restoring culture:

"Pre-modern Western society was based on Christianity, local traditions, and general understandings of what is natural and good. Modernity attacks all these things, and some Christians have proposed sidestepping the attack and making peace with modernity by divorcing their faith from other pre-modern principles. This proposal usually takes the form of abandoning tradition and natural law in favor of liberal Christianity or Christian liberalism, and it has become a source of fundamental contention among Christians. Some say that Christianity must change or die, and express itself by reference to contemporary understandings and concerns. Others say that it can only live through what it has received and that, if it makes contemporary views the standard, it will substitute another revelation for the Christian one." [Kalb, James (p. 135)]

One of my reservations regarding Kalb's position has to do with his read on the migration of peoples today. He insinuates a conspiracy theory enabling liberal despotism and damning Christian culture. Could it not just indicate an aspect of the "dark side" to liberalism, a flirt with anarchism? Why was the so-called barbarian invasion of Europe a once and for all? Could not such migrations be seen as not unlike an earthquake or a tsunami? For me, Catholicism in Germany always inspires hope: a first Roman evangelization nearly wiped out, followed by recovery with St. Boniface and companions, and almost  millennium later Low Country Jesuits renewing Catholic life and practice. Could the new Evangelization have any other sense? Are we not called in each generation to proclaim the Gospel anew?

I must fault Kalb on having given the impression that affirmative action is all-encompassing in American society. That might be true in local politics and government bureaucracy, but I know too many intelligent, young white males from ordinary backgrounds who are still making it based on intelligence and hard work. You can still beat the system, I believe.

The book may not be a life-changer, but if you are looking for help in articulating your dissatisfaction with certain things, it is straightforward and I think helpful.

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