Tuesday, April 7, 2015

Do as the Romans Did?

I share this via my friend Deaghlán Ó Donghaile in Liverpool. He posted this on FB c/o Bruce Fenton. As I blogged about this collision between conventional Christian values debased and the core of countercultural radicalism embedded at least in a few Catholic resisters, so Fenton concurs:

When Jesus was nailed to the cross by Roman soldiers, citizens of the day most likely cheered with the equivalent of "I support our troops."

This is what governments want people to do: cheer for symbols and uniforms rather than ideas. That way it is easy to do what the politicians wish, whether it's killing Jesus Christ because he was a threat to state power or bombing people who are a threat to crony profits.

Those who support symbols such as flags or troops rather than the ideas they represent always think they are doing the right thing, just as nationalist Romans trusted the government and cheered for the soldiers who crucified Jesus. They also likely had a negative reaction to anyone who questioned this. In some cases they are doing the right thing...in many cases they are simply being manipulated by politicians.

If this thought and comparison massively offends you think hard about why: is it based on logic or the feelings that politicians want you to feel? While the Roman citizens and soldiers seem so distant, make no mistake that the nationalistic spirit that supports state abuse exists today in every country, including our own. There are those politicians who do and would do evil and those citizens who would and do stand by and cheer in the face of it because they've been taught this by government.

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