I don’t know how I managed for so long to put off reading Allan Bloom’s 1986 The Closing of the American Mind.
I’m only through the Preface and Introduction, and the condition of American higher education he described thirty years ago is chilling. I might not read any further. The young people of that era are now the heads of various university departments and occupy high positions in government including the presidency. Today, the students of Bloom’s book coddle all the dangerous nonsense we’ve recently seen in the form of moral relativism, Black Lives Matter, White Privilege, LGBT baloney, and the active importation and protection of Mexicans and Muzzies at the expense of Americans.
Bloom regarded his work as a report from the front, which implies he might be just a disinterested embedded reporter. Uh, no way; he is a protagonist in the fight to save Western Civilization.
Rather than attempt to present his observations in a smoothed essay, I’ll list some of the highlights I’ve collected in the form of bullet points below. Like me, you’ll catch the drift of how Obama’s team and the media rationalize the destruction of our republic.
• Bloom wrote that almost all students say they believe the truth is relative. No matter their backgrounds, they are unified in their relativism and allegiance to equality. These have replaced the traditional inalienable natural rights that used to be the American grounds for a free society. This isn’t the equality of our Framers before God and the Law.
• We, the True Believers, are dangerous. History proves the world was mad. Men were so mad they thought they were right, and that led to wars, persecution, slavery, etc. Don’t bother to correct mistakes. Rather, don’t think about being right at all.
• Relativism is important because it is necessary to openness, which is the only virtue inculcated by the last fifty years of primary education. While the term suggests a student body in search of the truth, it is precisely the opposite.
• Before: Emphasis on natural rights, in which class, race, religion, and national origin dimmed when bathed in the light of natural law, which gave men common interests and made them truly brothers.
• Modern openness rejects all that. There is no attention to natural rights. There is no enemy other than the man who is not open to everything.
• Leftists resist the notion that outsiders must give up their culture and individuality. They are angry that one must participate in natural rights or be doomed to an existence on the fringe.
• Openness was to give ethnic groups respect from those not disposed to give it, like the WASP majority. Modern social science is designed to do away with the WASP majority.
• Our Founders’ principles are impedimenta.
• Recall our Founders didn’t much care for factions, yet they didn’t even try to suppress them. Instead, they came up with an elaborate governing structure in which factions tended to cancel each other out, and make way for the common good.
• The Constitution was to protect fundamental rights from majoritarianism.
• Thus, the great Leftist opening is actually a great closing. Values are relative. Create whatever lifestyle you wish. Leftists might consult a guru from time to time, yet they’ll avoid the historical sense of a Machiavelli who wrested a few hours from each busy day “to don regal and courtly garments, enter the courts of the ancients and speak with them.”
• Openness used to be the virtue that permitted us to seek the good by using reason. It now means accepting everything and denying reason’s power. Openness as practiced is meaningless. Cultural relativism destroys the good.
• Cultural relativism destroys the West’s intellectual claims and renders it just another culture.
• Unfortunately, the West is defined by its need for the justification of its ways or values, by its need for discovery of nature, by its need for philosophy and science. This is its cultural imperative. Deprived of that, the West will collapse.
• The United States is one of the highest and most extreme achievements of the rational quest for the good life according to nature. What makes its political structure possible is the use of the rational principles of natural right to found a people, and thus uniting the good with one’s own.
• IOW, the government established by the Constitution promised untrammeled freedom to reason – the essential reason that justifies the other freedoms, and on the basis of which, and for the sake of which, much deviance is also tolerated. An openness that denies the special claim of reason bursts the mainspring keeping the mechanism of this regime in motion. And this regime, contrary to all claims to the contrary, was founded to overcome ethnocentrism, which is in no sense a discovery of social science.
Don’t reach for the razor blade. Evidence of the superiority of Natural Law is all around. The rise of Trump alone reflects an electorate disgusted with our national trajectory, a trajectory created by over a hundred years of Leftism!
If America was so drugged on the moral relativism of Bloom’s book, over half of the states wouldn’t have challenged Obamacare and Obama’s open borders. Progressive California wouldn’t have passed both a statute and constitutional amendment in support of traditional marriage. Sure, college kids who do not yet have a positive stake in real life, and very well paid senior members of government and almost all of media can afford to goosestep toward the Utopian cliff, yet how often have you read of parents in support of Common Core? I’m not aware of any parents standing up at a local school board meeting to demand that educators make their children stupid.
I do not wish to imply that our situation isn’t critical, yet Natural Law is real. The history of repressive regimes show that while our nature can be suppressed, it cannot be destroyed. Our task is to channel national disgust away from the bad and toward the good.
Voting every two years is insufficient effort. Contact and press your state legislators to apply for an Article V convention; volunteer to the Convention of States.