This is an excellent essay. I think ideological purity is dangerous. What Lee states, is true on its face, religion or anti-religion, like any ideology can eventually turn authoritarian and embrace the worst aspects of the things it condemns. The problem isn't ideology per se, it is human nature and tribalism, plus our fundamental insecurity (in an existential sense) that drives people to do cruel, harsh things.
I really liked this portion.
"This pattern of controlling and destructive behavior coming out of movements that claim to be about liberation is deeply worrying. We all have made serious mistakes and hurt other people, intentionally or not. We get a chance to learn from them when others respond to us with kindness and patience. Where is our humility when examining the mistakes of others? Who of us came into the world fully awake?
@lbrindley any thoughts on my response? :)
I like what you said about human nature and tribalism contributing to the divisiveness that has become especially prevalent in society today. No one was born completely "woke," and no one can say with authority that they have not shown some form of prejudice towards another person solely based on external appearance, language, etc. Frankly, I think that people are quite competitive with each other, and the competition to become the "most woke" among social justice activists is detrimental to the movement.
@lbrindley I had a teacher in university who called the left a 'circular firing squad' (he was a socialist). I think it's important not to think of 'perfect' as an enemy of 'the good'. This tends to happen a lot. Practicality and idealism need not be enemies, though they are often treated as such.
Could not agree more, @YossarianJohnson. The best solution to any problem is one that combines both practicality and social benefit to those involved.
“Ayn Rand's 'philosophy' is nearly perfect in its immorality, which makes the size of her audience all the more ominous and symptomatic as we enter a curious new phase in our society.... To justify and extol human greed and egotism is to my mind not only immoral, but evil.” - Gore Vidal
In Walden, Henry David Thoreau discusses, 'quiet desperation'. What is it? In your opinion, does 'quiet desperation' drive the human need for escapism? Does it drive a need for a sense of overall purpose in our lives? (Photo credit / Franck Michel)