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11 Jan

If there is any question that is asked today that immediately makes me conclude that the questioner is an ass—and that the respondent isn’t much better—it is the question, “How do you FEEL about that?” Of course, the “that” may be anything from the weather to a national tragedy—and everything in between—but the question always refers to feelings. Nobody today asks, “What do you think about that?” I believe that if such a question were asked, the individual would be so dumbfounded as to be unable to respond at all! I really do wonder if the verb “to feel” has replaced the verb “to think.” I don’t know, but certainly everything today is predicated upon emotion—what “feelings” are—rather than rationality—which is what thinking is!

 

As annoying as this situation is for the rational and knowledgeable, worse, it is dangerous! When any social construct runs on emotion rather than reason, the results will tend to be catastrophic. It’s not enough to feel that the plane has enough fuel to reach its destination; one must know that it does or one risks catastrophe. It is not enough to feel that the lump in one’s breast is benign; one must know whether it is or not! Feelings, like the Biblical sand, make a poor foundation for beliefs and actions. Liberal actress Jane Fonda in the 1960s was heard to say about her political and social views, “I must be right—I’m so sincere! Sincerity is an emotion, a feeling. As such, it is no guide to accuracy. I may sincerely believe that I am going to Miami when I board a plane bound for Chicago, but when I land, it will be at O’Hare, and not Miami International!

 

But this matter has gone much further than a decided suppression of the American IQ! Almost every facet of the culture is now in the hands of those for whom “feelings” take precedence over “knowledge.” Is it any wonder that we suffer through the Age of the Eternally Offended? Taking offense is—you guessed it!—a feeling! And since reason and knowledge are of no value, it doesn’t matter if you are “offended” by something because of your own ignorance or prejudice! It is enough that you are offended for whatever offends you—however benign—to be considered worthy of censure! We haven’t had so many hurt feelings since Adam and Eve used prickly leaves to cover their tender parts back in the Garden! And if knowledge, facts, truth and rationality are no longer the criteria for discourse and social action, we are on the verge of chaos! Public policy, framed by “feelings,” then becomes whatever the largest and most powerful number of “the offended” want it to be, no matter how despotic and senseless. Of course, when mindless tyranny is the policy of the State, the results are always detrimental to both freedom and survival.

 

 


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