I seldom watch television’s so-called “news” networks because they are now mostly “opinion” networks. For down-time, I surf my TV for old B-grade Westerns that are often dull, but which clearly distinguish between good and evil, something that opinion-saturated TV does not do. To my mind, dull moralizing about the bad guys (and gals) who “get what’s comin’ to ’em” will always beat amoral and immoral opinion from talking heads. This applies, of course, not just to TV, but to all electronic media. These various media now exist in an unprecedented and fragile symbiotic relationship with their advertisers in which the media will die without advertising income and the advertisers will die without publicity.
The government-mandated Covid-19 shutdown exposed a similar fragility in our current capitalist system which is not only (a) dependent on advertising, but also (b) dependent on borrowed capital and (c) on keeping the customers coming. Businesses need as many customers as they can entice, so they advertise multi-culturally, but their rather value-free multi-culturalist message, or, I should say, their multi-culturalism weak in Judaeo-Christian values, along with current collectivist and materialist ideologies, have contributed to the collapse of our culture’s value system. In the electronic media, unlike in B-grade Westerns,objective good and evil are replaced by whatever might entice viewers and produce advertising dollars. This results in “news” that consists mainly of unsubstantiated opinions about the topic of the moment/ day/ week/ etc.: opinions about an airliner’s crash, about a Russian connection, about a virus, about George Floyd’s death. All financed by advertisers who care nothing about content and everything about attracting customers. Newscasters therefore harp on civil unrest in order to entice customers for their advertisers. This is a destructive arrangement that undermines our fragile capitalism which depends on, among other things, honest dealing and a tranquil civil order. If we damage the system to the point that businesses can no longer afford to advertise, they will wither. (But “every cloud has a silver lining,” such a situation would destroy the electronic media also.)
Media content is now so irresponsibly distorted that even the Pope can mention George Floyd and “all others who have lost their lives as a result of racism.” But nobody, to my knowledge, has any information that the policemen’s actions were racist, although they appear to be vicious and/or incompetent. But not every vicious or incompetent act is racist. Nobody (except, perhaps, the four policemen themselves) knows whether the police acted as they did “because Mr. Floyd was black” or they acted as they did, “and Mr. Floyd was black.” So, the Pope and thousands of others apparently have acted and spoken out of ignorance.
To see this clearly, imagine that three black and one Oriental policemen do to a white man what was done to Mr. Floyd – all caught on tape, etc. Should such an incident automatically be identified as racist? How could we tell? If we say that blacks would never act like that (why? Because only whites are racists?), then how do we explain all the recent video footage that documents young blacks looting and burning businesses owned by whites, Latinos, and Orientals (and their fellow blacks)?
It is therefore probable that these recent protests are not a protest against racism but are more likely the products of mass hysteria and delusion encouraged by activist radicals. People acting this way, of course, do not see themselves as deluded and hysterical. They see themselves as noble defenders of human rights. And that is how they appear on our amoral and immoral opinion-based media. Some protesters may be acting fora moral cause, but considering the present protest movement as whole, it seems to have more in common with Holland’s weird Tulip Mania of the 1630s when single tulip bulbs sold for ten times the annual income of a skilled laborer, more like the hysterical adoration by thousands of Adolph Hitler during the 1930s, more like the mass hysteria of teenage girls screaming, sobbing, and fainting during a Beatles concert, more like delusional flying saucer sightings, and more like lynch mobs than like proper indignation. Lynch mobs? We might find it helpful to view the present unrest as the planet’s largest ever lynch mob.
Contrary to what some contemporary liberal Christians have said about the riots, namely, that only love is important, the Bible, and the early Church Fathers (who were contemporaries with the Apostles or only a generation or so removed from them), had a had a broader, sterner and more biblical view of social unrest. The Bible speaks for itself. Here are some rather stern remarks from the Fathers whose works are not so widely available as are Bibles:
“. . . anger is foolish, and fickle, and senseless. Now, of folly is begotten bitterness, and of bitterness anger, and of anger frenzy. This frenzy, the product of so many evils, ends in great and incurable sin. For when all these spirits dwell in one vessel in which the Holy Spirit also dwells, the vessel cannot contain them, but overflows. The tender Spirit, then, not being accustomed to dwell with the wicked spirit, nor with hardness, withdraws from such a man, and seeks to dwell with meekness and peacefulness. Then, when he withdraws from the man in whom he dwelt, the man is emptied of the righteous Spirit; and being henceforward filled with evil spirits, he is in a state of anarchy in every action, being dragged hither and thither by the evil spirits, and there is a complete darkness in his mind as to everything good. This, then, is what happens to all the angry.” — The Pastor (or Shepherd) of Hermas (c. 150 AD).
“Hence flowed emulation and envy, strife and sedition, persecution and disorder, war and captivity. So, the worthless revolted against the honored, those of no reputation against such as were renowned, the foolish against the wise, the young against those advanced in years. For this reason righteousness and peace are now far departed from you, inasmuch as everyone abandons the fear of God, and is become blind in His faith, neither walks in the ordinances of His appointment, nor acts a part becoming a Christian, but walks after his own wicked lusts, resuming the practice of an unrighteous and ungodly envy, by which death itself entered into the world.” — The Epistle of Clement to the Corinthians (c. 70 AD?) (Clement is following up on Paul’s two letters to the same Church about its troubles.)
so support your local police.