STOP LEGITIMIZING ALEX JONES

Alex Jones is a psychopath.

Alex Jones is a carnival barker, a charlatan, a sick joke.

His name shouldn’t even be spoken.  Yet, here we are.

Jones, a proud purveyor of accusations without evidence, forced his way into the national spotlight by shamelessly leading the “911 Truther” movement, which based all of its ‘theories’ on debunked claims first put forth by a small band of individuals who were physically barely out of their teens but whose minds, reasoning skills, and physics experience remained well within the haunts of adolescence.

The easy and obvious debunking of those claims didn’t phase Jones.  It never does.  In the alternate reality he creates on a daily basis, the ‘government’ dutifully plays the convenient boogeyman and universal excuse for Jones when the truth blows up in his face.

Jones was preparing his conspiracy schtick while still in college, long before 9/11.  He first concocted his potion of psychosis mixed with his utter lack of shame to join those accusing the government of staging the 1995 Oklahoma City bombing.  It has continued unabated since, including last year’s Charlottesville tragedy which he immediately labeled an operation contrived by the CIA.

Make no mistake.  A healthy cynicism of and an ever-vigilant and critical eye on the federal government and its power are good and necessary.  But when they are dragged down into the abyss of self-serving vitriol and the theater of the absurd that is Alex Jones and his ilk, it tarnishes that good and everything it accomplishes.

He is called a conspiracy theorist, but that is not accurate. Theorist is far too legitimate a title for someone so cretinous as Jones. His intellect does not rise to that level.  He is conspiracy theater.  He creates fiction out of misdirection and sells it as reality.  Within minutes of the carnage of the Boston Marathon bombing, Jones was already freeze-framing raw footage of the event and drawing circles of what he deemed mysterious people and things. It is troubling that so many can be led to believe there is legitimacy in the simple act of drawing a yellow circle on a grainy frame of film.

All of the above pales in comparison to Jones’ most egregious act, which in came in 2012 in the wake of the Sandy Hook massacre.  Jones called it a hoax.  Twenty-six people dead. Twenty-five families shredded and Alex Jones commits the ultimate act of callousness by claiming — repeatedly and to this day — that it was all an elaborate hoax.  He even went so far as to posit that the murdered children were actors.

It is disturbing that so many actually believe the twisted words that come out of his mouth.  It’s sad that so many feel disaffected enough to be taken in by his swindle.  His YouTube videos collectively boast over one billion views — that’s a ‘b’ for billion, folks.  He also uses his outlets to sell supplements and survival gear.  The estimated annual revenue from the sales of these products is between $7 and $12 million. 

There’s no doubt that Jones ends each day with a wide smile as he puts his head to his pillow, knowing that his deceit goes on one more day and the pool of his blood money grows in his bank account.

While Jones’ brand of crazy appeals to people across the political spectrum, it is concentrated far more on the right. The right needs to assume responsibility for this or risk delegitimizing itself. Jones is a boil that needs to be lanced.  The right believes in the free market and it must use that mighty invisible hand to squash this piece of human debris called Alex Jones.  He needs to be vanquished and left to the ash heap of history.  The right must stop acknowledging Jones and his verbal sewage.  Stop quoting him.  Stop sharing his videos and website links.  Stop inviting him onto shows, even if it’s to Stop citing him altogether.

The opposite of love is not hate.  It’s indifference.  That’s how Jones will be stopped because he cannot bear to be out of the spotlight.

The market is the way and the only way this should be accomplished.  It is the market, led by those who can wield the most influence, that must mark him for what he is and destroy him.

Worse than enabling Jones to profit from his snake oil is using force and censorship to shut him down.  In the era of the Internet, that will will never be successful.  To do so would only play right into this charlatan’s hands.

Unfortunately, that’s exactly what is happening.  To earn a medal from their neighbors inside their shared political echo chamber, tech titans — Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, et al — are removing Jones’ accounts, no doubt with fists raised in the air to the delight of their own sycophants.  But those sycophants are no better than the members of the Alex Jones cult.

Banning Alex Jones — or anyone — is not the answer.  It has never been the answer and never will be. 

Yes, it is sad and maddening that he can enrich himself through deceit.  But the market must take care of that.  Banning Jones — especially someone like Jones whose followers are practically a cult — only legitimizes him.  He will now self-appoint himself as the poster boy for censorship, raising a sword to the jackbooted social media giants and quoting Braveheart as he leads his deceived warriors into battle, a battle after which he will undoubtedly enjoy even greater spoils.

Yet, that is exactly what they’ve foolishly done.

Instead of the tech giants banning Alex Jones, perhaps they should take a look at the fiction put forth from Michael Moore, who is just another version of Alex Jones. Moore hides behind the cloak of film-making, as if it’s more sophisticated and legitimate than talk radio, thereby shielding it from scrutiny and scorn.  His ‘documentaries’ are riddled with the same baseless garbage and conspiracy voodoo that Jones peddles.  They should even take a look at Hollywood and its fork-tongued soldiers of fortune for the years of garbage and lies it has spewed without the threat of correction or censorship.

If they still have time after examining the baseless conspiracy theories put forth by Moore and Hollywood, perhaps they could turn their attention to college campuses across the country where only a certain political viewpoint is allowed.  Come to think of it, they’re probably using the strangulation of thought on today’s college campuses as a guide.

If the left wants to start down the dark road of censorship, banning content, and trampling over the first amendment, it should keep in mind that should a block of well-heeled conservatives decide to join forces to buy majority positions in the publicly traded social media companies, the crime of censorship will find its victims among those whom the left holds dear. 

Alex Jones may be the worst of offenders, but his insidious buffoonery is present under more names than just his own.  Censor one and you must censor them all.

The weight of Jones’ absurdity would have eventually led to his demise.  Censoring him and banning his content have handed him a victory and significantly prolonged the time between now and that glorious day.

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FORGET DOG-EAT-DOG; DAWKINS SEEKS HUMAN-EAT-HUMAN UTOPIA

Evangelical atheist Richard Dawkins has a dream that one day human beings will get over their ‘yuck’ factor and start eating each other. 

To be fair, he wants laboratories to grow human flesh and meat for consumption, but that’s just window dressing.  The inevitable always lies just beyond the sanitized initial request.

Dawkins was reacting to a producer’s claim that animal meat is very close to being produced in a lab setting and may be available for human consumption by the end of this year.  But the thought of having an alternative to killing livestock for meat wasn’t enough for Dawkins.  It never is for “progressives.”

On Twitter, Dawkins mused, “Tissue culture ‘clean meat’ already in 2018? I’ve long been looking forward to this. What if human meat is grown? Could we overcome our taboo against cannibalism? An interesting test case for consequentialist morality versus ‘yuck reaction’ absolutism.”

Perhaps Richard was watching ‘Silence of the Lambs’ at the time and cheering on Hannibal Lecter, and that prompted the bizarre tweet.  Sadly, we know from his twisted writings and musings that’s not likely. Hannibal the Cannibal has been made real in the form of the world’s most famous faith-hater.

Dawkins’ vision of a human-eat-human paradise would be great news for traders in the destruction of human life and the vessels that house it.  Just think how convenient it will be for Planned Parenthood to finally come out of the shadows of selling human body parts on the black market and simply offering daily deliveries to local fast food joints.

The advertising is already predictable.  “Eat organic human flesh, not lab grown…”  “Our human flesh is guaranteed Non-GMO.”  Preventing Parenthood at All Costs will finally realize its financial dream of becoming a true slaughterhouse and openly selling fresh meat in the form of baby arms and legs.  Surely one of their marketing pros will brand them as ‘human veal.’

Crazy?  An unfair extrapolation?  Hardly. 

Progressive-ism — which is atheism in its political form — never stops after any victory.  It takes what is given and will immediately demand more.  It assumes a new base and grabs for more.  And more in human form sees its ultimate fulfillment in Dawkins and his deranged views.  Lab-grown animal meat today means human meat tomorrow.  Even if Dawkins’ dream is not achieved in his lifetime, his sick crusade will be picked up by one of his devotees.

Oh, I can hear you as I write this, my atheist friends. Richard doesn’t necessarily represent you, correct?  The variation of atheism you espouse and cling to wouldn’t be party to anything this out of the mainstream, yes?  You’re shouting at your screens right now.  “Dawkins is an outlier!  He doesn’t speak for the rest of us.  He is just an aberration!”

But Dawkins is no aberration.  He is the destination.  He is where the atheist road inevitably leads.  He is its final revelation.  He is the cheese at the end of the warped mental maze that is atheism.

If humans are nothing but a random, accidental collection of molecules devoid of purpose, meaning, or value, then we really are just meat.  Dawkins would be right and atheists necessarily must accept that cannibalism is acceptable.  Bon appétit.

The continued decline in the respect for human life has consequences.  Two generations growing up under Roe v. Wade has led to not only the acceptance of, but the rabid defense of, the intentional killing of nearly 60 million human beings who were simply resting and growing in their mother’s womb. Other consequences of abortion can be found in the practice of medicine, mental health, and more. But those are just rest stops on the highway to Dawkins’ Cannibal Island paradise. 

Every journey begins with a first step.

THE CHIVALROUS MAN IN A POST-CHIVALRY WORLD

There was a time that I was all in on chivalry. It went way beyond simply opening doors and pulling out chairs. I stood when a woman entered a room, approached a table, or rose to excuse herself from a table. I gave up my seat whenever a woman was standing, whether it be in a public meeting, at a children’s sporting event, or those rare times I’ve been on public transportation. I held a coat for a woman to aid her in putting it on and picked up anything a woman had dropped. I still cannot rest if I see a woman carrying something, just about anything, especially if the item seems heavy or if she is toting a child in her other arm.

That has faded over the years. It’s not that I don’t believe in doing all of those things. I do. Rather, the gestures have made me an anomaly; a quasi-time traveler hopelessly out of sync with a 2016 world. In rare circumstances, I will stand when a woman approaches a table, but, if it happens in a room full of people, it is a half-hearted stand in both posture and conviction and is tempered by an aversion to drawing unnecessary attention to myself. Today, these chivalrous gestures generate little more than suspicious glances from both the women for whom they are intended, as well as the onlooking men present.

The first incarnation of chivalry in the late middle ages actually had little to do with interactions between men and women. It was focused far more on men as warriors and citizens than as gentlemen in affairs of the heart and as defenders of a woman’s honor. The latter seems to have been more of an add-on. It was a “fusion of Christian and military concepts of morality” according to encyclopedia.com.

Since the end of the Middle Ages, chivalry has undergone revivals followed quickly by movements to bury it. Ironically, each time a revival was beaten back – from the Renaissance, to the Civil War, to the turn of the century — the reasoning was the same: it was outdated.

(Here comes the part where women throw sharp objects at me in their heads)

Even as the remnants of chivalry have attempted to survive within the cloak of Victorian/Emily-Post-ian codes of gentlemanly behavior, they’ve withered under a brutal beating from a wing of the feminist movement. The Gloria Steinem brand of feminism has aimed to advance its cause by erasing the differences between men and women under the guise of empowerment. It encouraged women to be one of the guys.

The inherent irony of such a misguided pursuit is that it is a woman’s femininity that is one of the essential keys to that very empowerment that was sought. The fatal oversight in that drive toward sameness is this: women are the most powerful civilizing force on the planet.

It is unfortunate that much of the resistance to chivalrous behavior from such women is based on the false notion that chivalrous behavior somehow invalidates the advances that women have made. Too many would have women believe that chivalry is an insult, the residue of an oppressive patriarchal system

Meanwhile, shell-shocked men are on the sidelines seeing nothing more than this in their gentlemanly behavior: one group of people (men) showing respect for another group of people (women) and nothing more.

Very early in life women are asked to take on a daily routine, not for their own benefit or other women, but for men and ultimately for the survival of the human race. They apply makeup, shave their legs and underarms, walk in heels, and stress over their hair, clothes, and weight. Early in their lives, they begin enduring a monthly cycle. Women then agree to have our children and voluntarily subject their bodies to more changes — some permanent – than we care to know. They then give from their bodies sustenance essential to the child’s survival. Women literally give of their bodies to ensure that the human race perpetuates and survives. As if all of that isn’t enough, they have another great change to which they must accept in the form of menopause. Every step of the way, they must contend with the inherently visual nature of men and a culture that feeds and intensifies it.

I cannot speak to the motivations of those who first devised the concept of chivalry centuries ago. I can only speak to my own desire to do what I do. For me, chivalrous acts have nothing to do with a perceived weakness in women. In fact, it is quite the opposite. They are a recognition of a woman’s strength, what she is asked to endure, and the honored role that women play in society. Men are well aware that a woman can open a door, carry a box, etc. That is obvious. Opening that door or carrying that box for a woman shouldn’t be seen as an insult.

Every gesture from a chivalrous man is an act of gratitude and honor. It is a silent acknowledgment and ‘thank you’ for everything that a woman goes through, much of it for men and children.

So, what is such a man to do in a society that increasingly rejects such behavior? To continue would be to accept life as a pariah. It is to endure the wary looks from onlookers. To stop is to go against instinct.

In a world that is quickly losing its graces and turning from civilized behavior, it’s troublesome that attempts to keep them alive are seen as outdated (again) and are failing to take hold.