Indian summer is what we call a spell of summer -like weather in the fall, so maybe you could call a spell of spring-like weather in winter Indian Spring. We haven't had a spell of it yet, only a few days sprinkled here and there between periods of rain. The rain doesn't stop Victorians from getting out, especially Victorians with dogs. Dogs don't seem to care if it rains or not, and they still have to do their business on every shrub and post so all the other dogs in the vicinity will be aware of their presence. I don't have a dog or a place to keep one if I wanted to- but I am not a dog person so it doesn't matter. My attitude to pets is that they should be semi independent as they were when I was a boy. Maybe because Edmonton was still quite countrified with horses fairly common on the streets, it didn't seem at all unseemly to see evidence of their passing along with the swarms of horseflies that were an inevitable part of the ecosystem. I don't think the latter term had been invented yet. In the winter those frozen road apples made pretty handy pucks for street hockey. It all seemed pretty normal then and dogs wandered freely. One thing that strikes me about the dogs of today, especially those pathetic little creatures most women adore, is how stupid they are around traffic. The dogs I mean.
Due to a minor health problem I've been hors de combat since Christmas. It's been almost a year since I started this blog. I originally wanted to assiduously follow local events and try to counteract the predominant leftward slant of most commentators. But I don't have the patience to sit through council meetings and sift through the technical literature and I don't like to focus on personalities. So the blog has taken on a will of its own, becoming more of a tribute to Victoria than anything else. Not a tribute to our local politics, which seems hopelessly idiotic, but to the piece of earth whereon all of us here live whatever our beliefs or politics. Victoria has a soul and in my view it's vastly underappreciated by its denizens. Maybe our soul as a people will grow in stature and become worthy of it as time goes by.
But these are hard times for development of culture, afflicted as we are by the curse of political correctness. There can be no true art or literature unless a public exists that is receptive to plain language and plain truth to start with. The really deep ideas and understandings that humanity has acquired over the millennia are very hard to express and without a commitment to plain, well- ordered language it is almost impossible for any communication to exist from one generation to the next. Political correctness is more than anything else the perversion of meaning in language. Examples abound. Pro Choice. What does that innocuous sounding expression mean? Does it, for instance, refer to whether someone is allowed to eat peas for supper, or wear one's tie in a bow, or to buy a Toyota instead of a Kia? No. People who describe themselves as pro choice mean that they are in favour of killing babies.
How about 'gay marriage.' Never mind that what was once a fine word has been hijacked, but the word 'marriage' has been rendered meaningless. It has never meant anything other than the joining together of a man and a woman for a lifetime partnership. In Catholic teaching it is a sacrament. It has never meant two guys screwing each other in the butt.
But more than the perversion of ordinary words, political correctness has become a weapon used to attack traditional beliefs so they could be replaced with others. Has this come about by accident, or through some esoteric process of cultural evolution? No. It is deliberate. There exists a philosophical school behind it. Called post modernism, this school imbibes many flavours of ideas, from phenomenology to existentialism, to utilitarianism and many others, but they all have one element in common. They don't believe there is such a thing as truth. Ridicule it as much as you want, the adherents of these philosophies are not deterred. The post modernists such as Derrida and Foucault carried things to certain illogical conclusions. If there is no truth, and every belief is false, why then how does one decide who is right and who is wrong? Simple. The person with the most power gets to decide. And what does it matter how you get power, since all is deception anyway? So lying, perverting the language, violence are all perfectly legitimate means of getting on top. Before the 1950's these philosophies were the province of a small coterie of wing ding academics unknown to anyone but themselves, but gradually they began to insert themselves into the public debating square. Under no compunction to play the game fairly, they used any methods to infiltrate universities and the media. It all came to fruition in the '60's when they managed to whip up students whose brains had been softened by the ingestion of drugs and whose morals had been corrupted by the elevation of the pleasure principle to cult status and set them loose to riot and kill in the name of free speech and freedom. Those rioters pretty well took over campuses everywhere and have turned them into indoctrination centres.
At every turn they have used the perversion of language known as political correctness as one of their most effective weapons to destroy as much as possible the great heritage we are all entitled to, which one calls Western Civilization for want of a better term.
They are old now, these campus radicals from the '60's, and growing stiff in the joints and getting senile. They thought they had killed the American experiment in freedom and individual liberty. And now look what happens. One woman, from Alaska, a mother, a huntress, a lover of home, hearth and family, pops up from nowhere. She hasn't killed her babies. She loves her husband. She loves her country. She is smart. Worst of all, she is (gasp) sane. And she connects with the people... not because she calculates how to put on a pose, but because she is one of us.
Boy, do they hate her, as the outpouring of venom over the last few weeks has proved. I'm speaking of the aftermath of the shooting in Arizona, of course. It is the most sustained and intense attempt to promote a lie, a vicious lie, that I have ever seen. Like a tangle of hissing snakes they spit and hiss, but she is not afraid. They are.
Maybe the left wing winter is on the wane, though the winds still blow viciously. But here and there are signs of spring. A rainbow, a cherry blossom, a patch of snowdrops. For some reason this is how life on earth works. There is darkness and there is light. They alternate, but somehow in the end life triumphs over death.