For anyone who watched the Xmen franchise, the character Jean Grey is well known. A woman of immense power, it was necessary for Xavier to create mental restraints to contain both her power and inner self. Like those lost on the Forbidden Planet of science fiction fame, once her inner Id was released, Jane’s potential for destructive evil was unparalleled. While such fictitious stories are mere fantasy, the basis for them are not.
Man is a horrific beast, selfish and given to anger, he is able to commit unimaginable acts of horror. Only strong inner restraints, imposed by civilized society, have shown themselves up to the task of holding his inner demons at bay. Mankind suffered for millennia under brutality, with mass graves, going back thousands of years and scattered across the planet, testament to the fact. Human sacrifices, savage warfare, and cruel treatment are not exceptions in human history, they are the rule.
The last couple of hundred years have been remarkable, not due to the inhumanity on display, but the existence of so many cultures with so little of it. The unlocked door of suburbia a few short decades ago was just as unheard of before then, as it is now. Read of the Wicker Man sacrifices, the inquisition or the implements of torture hidden in European dungeons, and one sees the West was a short time ago akin to Aztecs in brutality. That the West was able to climb out of this ooze and create what one now calls civilization is a miracle.
The interactions among individuals, and groups of individuals, is extremely complicated. Like aircraft that can’t fly without constant input from advanced avionics, civilization is under constant threat of a major crash and burn. Only the constant input of traditions, social networks, beliefs, and civil institutions developed over millennia keep it under control. For those that doubt this, look around the world and see the state of it.
The fact America, in particular, was able to develop such peaceful free communities is an event unparalleled in human history. Harlem Chicago, Detroit, Baltimore, Compton, and many other poor ethnic neighborhoods, were basically safe places to raise a family a few short decades ago. Middle class neighborhoods were even more so. It was not due to a lack of guns, which were more available, or access to drugs, most being legal then, or even stiffer law enforcement, laws were much more lax. To find he answer one needed only to stop by a church, visit a civic club, or set in a classroom. Each was once dedicated to reinforcing the restraints on mankind’s inner self.
The people trying to debate bump stocks and gun control, would be be aghast at the thought of sub-machine guns for sale next to hammers and nails at a hardware store (without a background check no less). Yet, this was part of America’s not so distant past. While gangsters used them on each other, and occasionally law enforcement, no one killed random innocent people. Most rural towns used to treat hunting season as a holiday, and a few still do. With high school and Junior high students off to hunt, holding class was of little use anyway. Back then, a quick check of student’s car trunks would of uncovered an arsenal of weaponry. Not a one of the millions of such kids ever dreamed of going on a killing spree. Societal restraints were too strong in the conscience of individuals for anyone to contemplate mass killings.
Recent events are testament to what happens when society’s moral restraints are loosened. The changes are not just a sign of the times, or inevitable part of “progress” either. They are symptoms of society cracking. Hairline fractures have turned into fissures. Before long, the long hard slog from barbarity will of been for naught. Economic disasters come and go, and natural one’s as well, but cultural downfalls are permanent.
The school shootings should be shaking people awake. The drug infested streets where life is cheap, and death all too common have been around for decades now. Sexual impropriety is now commonplace, with even women now being charged with statutory rape in unheard of numbers. The fracturing of society has been going on for some time. Violent protests, attacks on free speech, assassinations of cops, inner city murders, mass killings, and worsening societal divisions are all signs the cracks are becoming fissures.
It took 500 years to overcome the fall of Rome, and 200 more to build something even greater. It was not external threats that brought Rome ruin, they just took advantage of an opportunity. Societal rot had condemned her legions long before Rome was first sacked. The West too is on the verge of collapse. Rome had her barbarian tribes, the West has terrorists, rogue nations, and imperialists like China and Russia. The storming of the gates is not quite at hand, but the writing on the wall needs no deciphering.
No prophet is needed to tell the West her fate if she does not return to sanity. Only a little self introspection, a realization that much of what has been deemed social progress has been an thing but. There are those that say there is no returning back, but that is a lie. Fixing the situation only takes the will to do so, but first Americans must recognize what the real issue is.