As the political angst in our state and nation deepens, many individuals spend more and more of their time and energy on political partisanship. We often see this magnified on social media. Many relationships become more atomized and politicized through social media. And one only needs to watch the latest news about our broken federal government to get sucked into arguing with others over how dysfunctional they are up in Washington.
Social justice warriors, particularly, are pining to make everything in life political, especially holidays and other sacred spaces. Even the classic “Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer” film was recently attacked by the Huffington Post for a host of supposedly non-politically correct scenes. This is merely one example of so many, of course. One can come up endless examples of people trying to turn Christmas into a launching pad for their political soapbox. It’s almost like their incessant whining over phantom injustice is part of their master plan to wear you down.
But one of the great things about freedom and conservatism is we know we have a life and destiny beyond the political. Of course, those that don’t believe this will inevitably look to government first and may even end up worshiping it. What a sad and weak god to worship, but that is what many progressives are now doing.
This is sometimes why conservatives have a disadvantage in the public square when it comes to amassing political power or enacting our agenda. We are often tied up more with other endeavors, like work in the private sector. It’s hard to compete with folks who are making government their god. But unlike the perpetually aggrieved and offended, or the professional victims, our life is primarily outside of the political. It should be that way too. We should be aware that it’s not the most important thing in life.
Christmas is a great reminder to take a break from all the trappings and dysfunction we see all around us, particularly when it comes to political bickering and fighting. Other distractions may be excessive consumerism or unhealthy addictions. In “Mere Christianity,” C.S. Lewis notes obsession over distractions like that is man’s attempt “to find something other than God which will make him happy.”
Overall, this is more of a problem with the political Left than those on the Right, but we all need to be reminded during Christmas to focus on deeper things like family, friends, and faith.
If we are merely an automaton, whether it means too narrowly focused on consumerism, political ideology, and ourselves, we never really grow. And if we never really grow we ultimately can’t improve our communities, our state, and our nation.
Civitas will continue to keep fighting for liberties and freedom, not only because it is the right thing from a policy perspective but because as conservatives, we know we need space from this effort to politicize everything. Many on the Left don’t want this, they would rather you become a political automaton, enslaved by the state and ideology, where even your cultural freedoms and holidays are under the dominion of a politicized world.
Don’t be afraid to push back. Keep doing all the things that make North Carolina and this nation so great. Be an individual and keep looking to all the parts of life that are greater and more important than government.