OPINION: How did we get here?

OPINION: How did we get here?

June 19th, 2017 by Robin Smith in Opinion Columns

FBI agents continue to search for evidence on the baseball field in Alexandria, Va., Thursday, June 15, 2017, the day after House Majority Whip Steve Scalise of La. was shot during during a congressional baseball practice. (AP Photo/Jacquelyn Martin)

Photo by The Associated Press /Times Free Press.

Robin Smith

Robin Smith

Photo by Angela Lewis /Times Free Press.

Over the last few weeks, it's become clear, whether pondering the two terror attacks in the United Kingdom, the violent college campus protests characteristic of Evergreen College in Washington State or the heinous baseball practice ambush, our culture is displaying signs of death. Our culture is dying because our people are consuming lies instead of truth and substituting virtues for a sliding scale of morality of the day.

Americans deserve better and we can truly be better.

When a society permits indecency and vile conduct to masquerade openly as accepted behavior under the banner of "free speech," "protest" or "civil dispute," that society is left with indecency and vile conduct and its malignancies. Don't be surprised.

The embrace of relativism as a substitute for truths that transcend time and are as reliable as the law of gravity has occurred as a result of the idea that if you impose any standards upon others for the good of community and individual existential wellness, you're clearly judgmental, even a bigot. Simpler, if you have no standards, you must abandon expectations because there is no metric of success or good.

This relativism permits any loosely-knit group of individuals to define truth based on public opinion, an agenda item that's perpetrated as a newly created civil right or a narrative manufactured for the purpose of countering a political opponent. In the case of gender fluidity, perpendicular to the biological facts of chromosomal science and biology of thousands of years, individuals are now permitted, if not encouraged, to live in flux and confusion.

Rather than a society that builds on its founding of personal independence and personal responsibility, the accepted notion of the entitled existence of a large population of able-bodied adults receiving free housing, free food, free college tuition, debt forgiveness and living off the backs of those who are productive is neither sustainable nor right. Producing a population of "eternal children" is cultural suicide.

How did our technologically advanced society find itself in a cultural crisis entirely of our own making?

It's all about personal choices and the courage to stand in the face of the unpopular when you know your position is grounded in integrity and fact.

One chooses to move with those whose behavior doesn't just express some type of dissent, but is violent and malicious. One chooses to hurl weaponized words that marginalize, objectify and degrade for the purpose intimidation. Much simpler, you show me your friends, I'll show you your future.

Individuals choose to live life in a state of self-declared victimhood. Individuals and society at large chooses to normalize abhorrent actions and remain in what they see as a politically correct framework that doesn't dare permit consequences for wrong-thinking and behavior.

Proof is found in the escalated security necessary to protect U.S. Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos. U.S .Marshals have been deployed to protect, not the secretary of state nor the CIA director, but the secretary of education. At a projected cost of $8 million in additional spending, money that should be going to students is diverted to protect an official whose approach to education is violently opposed.

We can't turn back the hands of time. But, we can stop the self-inflicted madness where wrong is declared right and we, instead, live as civilized individuals.

Robin Smith, a former chairwoman of the Tennessee Republican Party, owns Rivers Edge Alliance.

Getting Started/Comments Policy

Getting started

  1. 1. If you frequently comment on news websites then you may already have a Disqus account. If so, click the "Login" button at the top right of the comment widget and choose whether you'd rather log in with Facebook, Twitter, Google, or a Disqus account.
  2. 2. If you've forgotten your password, Disqus will email you a link that will allow you to create a new one. Easy!
  3. 3. If you're not a member yet, Disqus will go ahead and register you. It's seamless and takes about 10 seconds.
  4. 4. To register, either go through the login process or just click in the box that says "join the discussion," type your comment, and either choose a social media platform to log you in or create a Disqus account with your email address.
  5. 5. If you use Twitter, Facebook or Google to log in, you will need to stay logged into that platform in order to comment. If you create a Disqus account instead, you'll need to remember your Disqus password. Either way, you can change your display name if you'd rather not show off your real name.
  6. 6. Don't be a huge jerk or do anything illegal, and you'll be fine.

Chattanooga Times Free Press Comments Policy

The Chattanooga Times Free Press web sites include interactive areas in which users can express opinions and share ideas and information. We cannot and do not monitor all of the material submitted to the website. Additionally, we do not control, and are not responsible for, content submitted by users. By using the web sites, you may be exposed to content that you may find offensive, indecent, inaccurate, misleading, or otherwise objectionable. You agree that you must evaluate, and bear all risks associated with, the use of the Times Free Press web sites and any content on the Times Free Press web sites, including, but not limited to, whether you should rely on such content. Notwithstanding the foregoing, you acknowledge that we shall have the right (but not the obligation) to review any content that you have submitted to the Times Free Press, and to reject, delete, disable, or remove any content that we determine, in our sole discretion, (a) does not comply with the terms and conditions of this agreement; (b) might violate any law, infringe upon the rights of third parties, or subject us to liability for any reason; or (c) might adversely affect our public image, reputation or goodwill. Moreover, we reserve the right to reject, delete, disable, or remove any content at any time, for the reasons set forth above, for any other reason, or for no reason. If you believe that any content on any of the Times Free Press websites infringes upon any copyrights that you own, please contact us pursuant to the procedures outlined in the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (Title 17 U.S.C. § 512) at the following address:

Copyright Agent
The Chattanooga Times Free Press
400 East 11th Street
Chattanooga, TN 37403
Phone: 423-757-6315
Email: webeditor@timesfreepress.com