Imagine an old, dilapidated ship (yes, much like the Black Pearl) in the midst of a treacherous storm. Now imagine that this storm is only a few clouds long, but for some reason the Captain has been circling under these few clouds for days. Some of the crew members have suggested that if he quits going in circles, he’ll get the ship out of the storm, but the Captain has denounced them as simple minds and sentenced them to deck-scrubbing duties, despite the fact that the ship deck is flooded. He only listens to his yes mam’s.
While the rabble-rousers are scrubbing the flooded deck, there’ an entire different crew vehemently trying to bucket water out of the ship. Meanwhile, it turns out there’s a collection of care-free pirates playing Uno in the mess cabin. They’ve velcro’d the bottom of their tin cups to the velcro spots on the table so they don’t have to keep picking up their cups and refilling them every time the ship gets rocked. They’ve also screwed the table to the floor, and likewise with the benches. They're having a good time.
Stossel did a CNN special on the inner-workings of a presidential campaign. These guys are complete stooges…the candidates. They have tons of people telling them what to say, how to say it, and what to look like when they say it. Campaign strategists use sociological studies and demographical polls to dictate everything. A campaign is professionals telling candidates how to do everything except be themselves. They must avoid saying what they really wan to say at all costs.
It seems that every generation breeds some outspoken lunatic who also happens to run an entire country. Said lunatic usually proclaims that an entire particular race of people are inferior or responsible for the troubles of the world. He concludes that every individual of this particular species must be wiped out as if they were a nuisance cockroach problem in need of a pest specialist. It is by far one of the most maniacal concepts. It’s akin to someone saying the red Camaro is faster and more reliable than the gray one... except in reality we're talking about human beings being wiped off the face of the planet... as in killed, because someone thinks that's how it should be. Really.
Ravi Zacharias told of an instance when he was called by a New York Times columnist to ask for his opinion on all the cheating and financial scheming that seems to be rampant (this was shortly after the Enron fiasco). Professor Zacharias asked the reporter what he was so puzzled about. We teach students there is no absolute truth, no moral-law giver, no definite right or wrong, and that all things are subjective, relative. Then they get out of school filled with knowledge and no sense of morals or consequences. And we wonder how they could cheat, lie, and manipulate.
Common sense is no longer common.
There are human beings in certain regions of the world whose entire existence is solely comprised of finding food and water so they don't die. Many of them eventually die. They die from drinking contaminated water, starvation, fevers and common colds. Those who aren't dead live in huts made of straw, sometimes dung. They don’t have a TV and have never worn shoes in their lives.
On the flip-side, there are also human beings who own entire islands. They have more money than many countries’ entire GDPs. They fly across the globe just to have dinner at a particular French restaurant.
At some point, we either have to laugh or cry because this existence all seems like a big joke. The joke, I think, is on those who don't know that it's a joke.
I think part of the problem may have to do with the fact that we entertain and continue to take the Captain seriously. When a mayor comes out and seriously tries to convince citizens that large sodas should be banned- as in outlawed; as in made illegal (can you imagine getting arrested for selling or drinking a 20 oz. Coke?) - there should not be one non-mentally handicapped citizen who takes him seriously. All able-minded citizens should immediately conclude that the Captain is a lunatic who has no respect for freedom and personal responsibility, and he should immediately be relieved of his position. He would make a good apprentice for the guy across the globe who seriously thinks Jews should be annihilated simply for being Jews.
When the most talked about aspect concerning a previous sparring session between two Harvard grads who want to be the next Commander-in-Chief of the country witht the most bombs, guns, and bases from where said arms can be dislodged from, is a giant talking bird, you have the wonder if the crew has also lost their minds. The storm is kicking the snot out of the ship, the Captain keeps going in circles, and all we can talk about is a giant made-up bird.
What in the world are the sane supposed to do? If we don’t be careful we too can get caught up in the giant bird talks. I've already seen it happen.
Something is terribly off. There’s no way things are supposed to be like this. Something tainted human existence and it seems so few of us even notice the humor that is this feeble ship.
For the reasons I just mentioned, I can’t take any of the “serious” things seriously anymore. Nobody says what they mean anymore and we don’t know what the meaning of what they say is. There's no general compass in the world. There's no common sense. There's too much hate and not enough love. And above all, there's a whole lot of confusion. I can read ten different books on J. Edgar Hoover, and I won't know if the guy was a cross-dressing racist or a American-saving, equal-rights advoctae, commie-bustin' patriot.
Maybe I’ll join the guys playing Uno in the mess cabin.
I can easily immerse myself in frivolities. There are lots of intriguing shows I can get into. Lots of books about entertainers and artists I want to read. I’ve always wanted to learn woodwork. I can do that as well. I'll start painting again. I'll join an underwater basketweaving group. So many fun things to do.
Since the ship is going to sink anyway, I might as well play cards until it goes down. Sure, I’ll go out and sporadically feed the crew and maybe give them some dry clothes, but there’s no sense in trying to talk to the Captain or the mentally-handicapped crew members. I don't want to get too emotionally invested. I'll reserve that for NCSI. The crew think the problem is that they’re not scooping water fast enough. And the only thing the Captain is doing is making sure he doesn’t make it obvious how stupid he thinks the crew is.
Now I understand why ignorance is bliss. I understand why only half of the people in this country vote. We’re like a thriller that ends up a comedy.
What are you doing? Playing cards or scooping water and yelling at the Captain? Is it reasonable for me to play cards with my buddies while all this is going on?