An Harmonic Convergence


Reading a number of things at once sometimes leads to some interesting observations that might not come from reading any one of them separately or from reading them sequentially.

Saturday the bookgroup decided to read Malcolm Gladwell's The Tipping Point. I duly went out and bought this book because I felt that it was one that I was likely to want to refer to in the future. It is certainly getting a lot of play in business circles and I thought it might be useful to have on hand. (I'm not usually one to read books that are popular in business circles, but this also seems to be about memes and the effect thereof on people--and that is of intense interest.)

Also to hand as a result of a visit to the library yesterday is Ralph Nader's The Good Fight. Subtitled, Declare Your Independence and Close the Democracy Gap, Mr. Nader's thesis is that we are slowly abdicating our form of government from a sense of helplessness and the futility of it all. (For example those among us who would argue that our vote "doesn't make a difference" because ultimately it doesn't boil down to one vote.)

It occurred to me that it would be possible that the "futility" argument could become a particularly virulent (and fashionable) sort of meme that would lead to a crisis of voting and governmental participation. While I wholeheartedly agree with folks who point out that when the choice is between Giuliani and Clinton, there is not no candidate to vote for, does that mean necessarily that I must or should not vote.

No. Once again, I'm led to the conclusion that we must vote. We must exercise the franchise each and ever time, even if voting means writing in the name of a person we liked but who didn't make it through the primaries. Even if it means writing in, time and again NONA. Even if it means, eventually, getting involved ourselves--on a local, state, or even national level.

If the way of life we celebrate today, given to us through the actions of many noble people who lost life, limb, family, and property while fighting, is to continue we are required to take action. Each of us is required to exercise that franchise in whatever little way we do, because THAT is the meme we want infecting future generations. Not angst, trial, apathy, and cultural anemia, but a strong statement that we believe in our present way of life and we will, in our own small way, honor those who came before by exercising to the fullest the freedom they bequeathed us.

Shalom to all on this Veteran's Day celebration. May the happy memory of those who gave their lives, literally or through their toil in the defense of our country, remind us always to be respectful of what they have secured for us. And may those who passed away in battle or as a result of war rest in peace and rise to the resurrection dawn assured of their place in heaven by their sacrifice for others. As we remember those who died, let us offer some suffrage that they might see God's glory and dwell in the light of the beatific vision.

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This page contains a single entry by Steven Riddle published on November 12, 2007 7:44 AM.

Sloth and Acedia was the previous entry in this blog.

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