What’s Wrong with the World

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Out of the heart

For out of the heart come evil thoughts, murder, adultery, sexual immorality, theft, false witness, slander.

Matthew 15:19

Keep thy heart with all diligence, for out of it are the issues of life.

Proverbs 4:23

I recently read about an Internet atheist who has said something to this effect: "I don't think it's really wrong for me to lust and hate. Those are just mental attitudes, and I can control them."

In pondering what, if anything, to say about Dylan Roof's vile murders in Charleston recently, that particular bit of pernicious foolishness from the atheist seemed relevant. Of course, the atheist was saying it deliberately in contradiction to the words of Scripture and of Jesus Christ. Nah, never mind all that "keep thy heart with all diligence" stuff. Never mind "He that hates his brother is a murderer." Never mind "Out of the heart come murders." I can harbor whatever thoughts and attitudes I want, because they're "just thoughts" and I can control them and not act on them.

Dylan Roof didn't keep his heart, and murder came out of it. (South Carolina does have the death penalty, and he deserves it and ought to receive it, though it seems that South Carolina's actual use of the death penalty is currently tied up in lethal injection red tape.)

His evil leads me to reflect a little bit on web sites, obsessions, and keeping one's heart.

For those who are very mainstream or very politically correct, things are pretty cut and dried. Some endless litanies of horror stories and anecdotes of evil-doing are approved; other reports of group-on-group evil-doing are evil in and of themselves. Endlessly retelling anecdotes of anti-gay bullying or killings is fine. Labeling the Family Research Council a hate group is fine, even if Floyd Lee Corkins is inspired thereby to try to carry out a massacre at the Family Research Council. Likewise feminist man-bashing and stories about the evil things whites have done to blacks over the years. On the other hand, any web site that posts even a single article expressing worries about the Polar Bear game and the media's failure to cover black-on-white violence accurately or that gives even moderately favorable mention to Colin Flaherty's book (endorsed by Thomas Sowell) is a hive of evil racism and should be shunned. Likewise any site that has as a theme the problems with Islam and that recommends an end to Muslim immigration.

If one is not so PC, however, things aren't so clear. And here's the thing: There's a reason why they aren't so clear. Man is fallen, and there are indeed evil things done by one group of people to another, and these do fall into categories; they are classifiable. Men do often mistreat women. Likewise, there are characteristic ways in which women mistreat men. There have been white-on-black atrocities and black-on-white atrocities, and the latter are indeed underreported and to some degree covered up by the news media.

All true. But at the same time, to say that one is just reporting the truth, just getting the word out, just trying to "empower" a mistreated group, becomes less and less plausible when one is obsessing. When is a web site or a person obsessing? When does it come to be, functionally if not intentionally, a promoter of hatred for that group by the obsessive, never-ending, hammering way in which it reports? Well, I'd like to think I know it when I see it.

If an evil, crazy person decides to murder a bunch of innocent people, the rightness of that act never follows logically from accurate reports of other evil acts. It doesn't even follow logically from such reports combined with accurate and frustrated statements about media bias. It sounds trivial to say, "Two wrongs don't make a right," but it is true nonetheless.

Still. Keep thy heart.

At the risk of sounding preachy, but also with the intent of doing something constructive, I want to say this to my fellow somewhat-right-of-the-mainstream conservatives: Yes, we need alternatives to the mainstream media. Yes, we want to know what is really going on in our world, even if some of what is going on is unpalatable to the Guardians of Public Opinion. At the same time, if you find yourself going to a web site or group of sites that starts to make your heart feel dark with burning resentment and hatred, stop! Stop now. Cut off ties. Don't go there anymore. Don't feed your heart on it.

Because out of the heart are the issues of life.

Comments (9)

Excellent post, Lydia; a good exhortation for us all.

We need to be happy warriors, not angry vigilantes.

Great post Lydia. There are a number of neo-reactionary bloggers I just don't visit anymore for the very reason you outline in this post. One of them, whose name rhymes with "dim", recently got into an argument with Zippy of all people that racism is not real -- as in it doesn't exist as a real, ontological category (this blogger also thinks William Wilberforce was evil, just to give you a sense of how far down the rabbit hole some of these guys are.)

At the same time, I will continue to argue that there are racial differences between groups, that the left's worry about 'disparate impact' is misplaced, that immigration policy should take into account these differences, etc., etc. I won't let the crazies have a veto over the truth.

As long as we stay grounded in the cross, I think we'll do fine making our case in the public square with integrity and tough love.

It's interesting to me that we haven't heard anything yet about Roof's religious beliefs. My own opinion is that we'll find out he's either an atheist or Wotanist (or some other variety of white supremacist pagan). For instance, the code '1488'--that Roof has scrawled in the sand in one of the photos on his website--was popularized by David Lane, who was a Wotanist neo-nazi. And Roof's reported comment prior to the shooting--"I'll give you something to pray about"--is indicative of contempt for Christianity.

White supremacists today almost never consider themselves Christian. The KKK no longer exists, and it's been largely supplanted by Neo-Nazism. Even the 'Christian Identity' racists specifically repudiate a connection to Christian religious beliefs. Thus, much to the mainstream media's disappointment, the Sikh temple shooter and the Jewish Center shooter in Kansas were both avowed pagan Neo-Nazis. And Anders Brevik turned out to be an agnostic Neo-Nazi, though perhaps sympathetic with the Christian Identity movement.

I think at some point white supremacists realized the untenability of adhering to a religion that asserts the unity of the human race and has historically resisted Nietzchean and evolution-inspired ideas about the inequality of the races. On the other hand, by subscribing to Wotanism, white supremacists find religious support and encouragement for their drug use, sexual libertinism, and violence. Of course, Christianity rejects these things, and its doctrines undercut their racial theories; hence, they've rejected Christianity.

Would someone mind telling the media?

I think at some point white supremacists realized the untenability of adhering to a religion that asserts the unity of the human race and has historically resisted Nietzchean and evolution-inspired ideas about the inequality of the races.

Martel, it sounds like you have researched this more thoroughly than I have, but my much more limited anecdotal experience (some of it on this very blog) agrees with what you are saying. There was a time (ahem) when it was impossible for me even to put up a post applauding a video of tribal Christians receiving the Bible in their own language without one of our visitors, who fortunately no longer shows up, coming on and *pretending* friendliness to Christianity while actually showing contempt for it (the mask would slip from time to time) as being a religion of weaklings without a proper sense of racial and Western superiority, as being *inherently* connected to multi-culturalist drivel, etc. Also missions are bad because...I dunno, they teach us to love non-white people too much, or something. We should care more exclusively for our own tribe. Missions are too universal.

I would explain with (for me) a fair degree of patience that the Great Commission is *foundational* to Christianity, that if you believe Christianity is *true* you do not have an option to despise foreign missions (even though of course not every individual is called to it) or to think exclusively in tribal terms, and that therefore the *prior* question is whether Christianity is true or not. Those of us who think it true are not allowed to be coming up a priori with some kind of Nietzschean neo-racialism and then judging Christianity negatively by that light.

I don't think I ever got very far.

The left doesn't want to admit that there is secular evidence that there are things we could do that don't violate civil rights to mitigate this sort of thing. For example, there is a disturbing tendency to find these men on some sort of strong psychotropic medication that doesn't ordinarily get prescribed for psychotic outbursts. This would lead us to conclude that maybe the argument that said drugs can cause psychotic outbursts in a minority of users is something that needs to be very serious studied with serious money. One could also add that if there's anywhere CPS should be getting involved, but won't without major house cleaning, is punishing parents and schools that use drugs like Ritalin and Adderall as substitutes for discipline.

It doesn't help our situation that the left is already approaching this from a "let no good crisis go to waste" approach. We have calls for more legislation, despite the evidence pointing to the only reason he had the gun in the first place was a straw purchase for a convicted felon... which is already quite illegal under state and federal law.

In this particular case I believe he was also buying his drugs illegally and using them however he wanted, so even further restrictions on those drugs, or more hesitation to prescribe them, would not have made a difference.


Good points. There is a lengthy, recent article in Salon (of all places!) that talks about Christian Identity and neo-pagan white supremacy. It reiterates many of the points I made above (including the fact that many leaders of CI are covert pagans.) It's called 'Behind Dylann Roof's Race War'. It's available online and is worth a read. My only criticism (and it's a major one) is the nonsense about Christians having their own extremists (CI) just like Islam has theirs (ISIS). That is total BS. There is no Christian theological precedent whatsoever for the CI idea that the Jewish race is subhuman, whereas there is precedent in spades for the notion that violent jihad is an inherent and essential prerogative of Islam.

Finally, I suggest you also read 'Why Wotanism' by David Lane, to get a better idea of the non-Christian character of the contemporary white power movement.

Yeah, Martel, that was an interesting interview in Salon, but as you say, it's like they are captivated with the name "Christian Identity" and act like it's really part of Christianity, even though almost every word this expert was saying shows that it isn't. He'd literally say that some person was simultaneously part of Odinism and Christian Identity and the next moment say that Christian leaders need to "acknowledge this element within Christianity." I'm saying, "What??" But it was an interesting interview nonetheless and introduced me to some names I hadn't heard before.

As for that David Lane Wotanism guy, shoot! Now you've got him in my web browsing history and he's a total scary kook-ball. Brrrr.

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