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Friday, December 12, 2014

Playing Through the Pain

Emergency responders will tell you that pain is actually a good sign in trauma victims--the fact that nerves haven't been destroyed leaves open the hope that injuries might be substantially repaired.  But your typical lay person may not recognize this.

Andrea Tantaros doesn't want to deal with this.  She just wants the pain of America's illegal and immoral torture programs to be over, hoping that simply shouting "America is awesome" will make it so .  Although this attitude is dangerous and wrong-headed, she's far from alone in this.

Contemporary society in general does not honor 'playing through the pain'.  It regards  discomfort and inconvenience with unmitigated fear and disgust.  It's all a part of a consumerist world view that has rejected life in an infantile effort to ward off the inevitability of challenge and change; the only thing Americans value is immediate satisfaction of their personal wants.

Our ancestors had a different outlook.  They didn't see life as an unchanging condition of stasis to be maintained at all costs, moral, intellectual or otherwise.  They saw human life as a natural progression of development whereby individuals tested themselves against time and their fellows to attain the height of their capacities, spiritual as well as physical.  This is why they honored age; having proved their mettle in the crucibles of outrageous fortune, these were people whose sorrows could prove instructive to the young.

But no more.  We just want the pain to be over.  We refuse to learn from it.

If this is to be America's attitude going forward it's best days are already behind it, left behind with the lessons it doesn't think are worth learning.