May 3, 2005

"like the rightful inheritor of a lost estate"

I love this piece by Charles A. Coulombe, on red state politics, blue state tastes...The details are different, but It captures our own feelings very well...

...Here are its basic symptoms: on the one hand, my politics are firmly fixed on the right. So far as I am concerned, abortion is murder, gay marriage is an exercise in insanity, government supervision of my every move is dictatorship, and taxes are just too bloody high. Gun control is simply a way of disarming the citizenry, and the declining birth-rate will destroy social security and beggar us all. So too, on a more a-political plane, I prefer the Tridentine Mass to the new one, and wish women wore hats to church. So --- perhaps I should move to Kansas or Texas?

By no means! Because while my convictions might land me in the rural Midwest or South, my aesthetic tastes keep me firmly bound to the liberal enclaves of the West Coast and the North-East. Where in Odessa, Texas or Manhattan, Kansas would I find the Thai restaurants, Korean barbecues or Shabu-Shabu houses I crave? The theater, and opera? The huge libraries and architecture that feed my soul?

Even my religious needs are better served in cities than in the country: most large cities (save Los Angeles) have at least one “liturgical parish,” where Tridentine Masses are offered, or at least Gregorian Chant, Polyphony, and/or orchestral Masses are served up. Even in the L.A. area, I can still take in a weekly Tridentine Mass, or else a liturgy from one of the innumerable Eastern Rites established here (Coptic, Melkite, Maronite, Ukrainian, Ruthenian, and many, many more). In the great Red Zone, you are stuck with whatever the local priest gives you, and however conservative the feelings of the communicants may be, they will have to make do, often enough, with clown Masses and altar girls....

Of course the frustrations of living among liberals who have their brains on "lock-down," to avoid any insurrectionary thoughts, is considerable. What to do? Coulombe has a good suggestion...

...So for all these, and many more reasons, I am firmly anchored to urban realms, despite the anti-smoking laws, pornographic ads, and just plain insane civic governments to be encountered there. Yet I am acutely aware that I must self-censor my conversation or else endure uncomfortable silences when I bring up an unpleasant truth. How do I cope with this?

I find that field trips to the deepest center of the blue-state city in question, to where it started, help a lot. When I go, for example, to the statue of King Charles III in Los Angeles’ Old Plaza, to Bowling Green in New York, or to the Old State House in Boston, I am reminded that my views on things both Church and State were, to a great degree, shared by the founders or earliest leaders of these towns. Whatever has happened since, there is a commonality there that echoes down the centuries. At moments like these, I do not feel like a red state exile in blue state Babylon; rather, I feel like the rightful inheritor of a lost estate. All my annoyances fade for the nonce, and I leave refreshed and ready for the ideological battles that lie in wait at the next cocktail party...

Interesting idea. The old brick buildings of Jackson Square still have the iron shutters used in Gold Rush days...And I live close to where the last duel was fought in California...They might be useful meditative antidotes to the Tranzi idiocy of lefties, (who hate all wars, except those not fought by the US or Israel...)

Posted by John Weidner at May 3, 2005 7:58 AM
Weblog by John Weidner