Support First Things by turning your adblocker off or by making a  donation. Thanks!

Film-maker Michael Moore has apparently praised the gulf weather for its chance of disrupting the Republican convention: “This hurricane is proof that there is a god in heaven.” Another low point in politics, though possibly one that could be passed off with a laugh—a partisan irony, rather than a serious derangement.

But over on the leftist Daily Kos website, there is a post that sinks much lower—so low that it caused many of the commentators to denounce it. Which led another commentator to make this remark:

I am prepared to do whatever is necessary to destroy the Republican Party as it exists today as well as everything it stands for.

If health insurance for all, an end to the Iraq War, an end to torture and illegal wiretapping, and a sane energy policy can be obtained at the price of destroying one teenage girl, her family, and the surrendering our self-respect I see that as a cheap trade.

Go talk about nobility of purpose to those 4,000+ dead American soldiers in Iraq.

Indeed, as another comment added:

This is about Power . . . How it is obtained—and how it is wielded in ways that affects all of us.

Are you telling me that you would not use character-destroying lies to ensure a war against Iran does not occur?

Are you telling me you would not spread lies about a man’s integrity, even if it defeated a candidate who take away the right to choose?

Are you telling me you would not destroy the love a family holds for one another, even if it meant letting someone who would destroy the constitution become president?

None of use would use these tactics in a perfect world. It is not a perfect world. It is a fallen world. We have to judge costs and benefits, not moral absolutes. I know this is the way to fanaticism and destruction—believe me I do. But, when we face opponents such as the ones we face . . . what else is there for us to do?

What choice do we have? When faced with monsters, we have to be monstrous ourselves.

“When faced with monsters, we have to be monstrous ourselves.” Well, no, but even if it were so, think one step deeper: What happens when the monsters are merely in your mind? When they are ordinary politicians whose views you so strongly reject that you have to elevate them into monsters to explain to yourself why they could hold such mistaken views?

This is the blade by which politics turns to bloodshed.

Dear Reader,

We launched the First Things 2023 Year-End Campaign to keep articles like the one you just read free of charge to everyone.

Measured in dollars and cents, this doesn't make sense. But consider who is able to read First Things: pastors and priests, college students and professors, young professionals and families. Last year, we had more than three million unique readers on firstthings.com.

Informing and inspiring these people is why First Things doesn't only think in terms of dollars and cents. And it's why we urgently need your year-end support.

Will you give today?

Make My Gift

Tags

Loading...

Filter First Thoughts Posts

Related Articles