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View Diary: Gonzales Watch: Women at Abu Ghraib (140 comments)

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  •  Heh. (none)
    You know, I feel very much the way you do - useless, futile, not having done enough, kicking myself for having been a good little theocon as a kid, and a confused, struggling "moderate" for years thereafter. In person, I'm a nerdy, weedy mouse with a stutter, nobody pays attention to me, unless to poke fun at me, among my own circles. I frequently have to play devils' advocate to support the positions I want, because my family tends ot reflexively contradict me (but this works if I play DA, see) and like most of us here, I often feel like I'm shouting into the hurricane.

    It really is hell, being an idealist but also a pragmatist.

    But having the historical perspective helps, too - as does being a Taoist, more than anything else. You can't know what words of yours will have effect - the seed scattered on the ground, some will be eaten, some wither, some grow. And if you give up the craving for instant results - which is both a kind of pride, vanity to see that you, you alone, are Doing Something Important - and worse yet, a bullying, the need to have others Submit to you, publically - then that frees you to simply try, to act wihtout worrying if your words, your deeds will be the key to success. It's a kind of giving up of self-consciousness.

    For me, the first step - and boy was it a long and hard one - was recognizing my own moral cowardice and ll the excuses I was making, and finally taking on my demons in challenging the orthodoxy of Gibson's Passion, after seeing people who'd been held up to me as great thinkers and intellectually honest and historically informed, both wrong, and lying, all in the service of ideology, last february-march.

    It's been a terrifying Nantucket sleigh-ride ever since. But even when I feel most hopeless, I know I'm not alone, because there is this huge crowd of us here, out in the world, who now know about each other because of the net.

    Keep fighting the good fight, yourself!

    "Don't be a janitor on the Death Star!" - Grey Lady Bast (change @ for AT to email)

    by bellatrys on Tue Jan 25, 2005 at 05:27:58 AM PST

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