Saturday, April 06, 2013

I do have some things to say about David Hart's essay in First Things on natural law. Edward Feser has written a response to T. Kozinki's essay responding to some of Hart's critics. I must say that I am rather disappointed in how the combox discussion at Edward Feser's blog has turned out. It had started off as a polite exchange between Mssrs. Hart and Feser, but then a certain internet personality (known as someone who strenuously attacks Catholics he deems to be anti-semitic) introduced a tangent into the discussion which lead to various comments being made about "conspiracy theories" and conspiracy theorists. While there may be some merit to Feser's contention that the modern state bureaucracies of "western liberal democracies" are incapable of pulling a conspiracy off, that does not mean that a modern government, or some part of it, is not capable of executed a limited action while deceiving the public about the nature of the resulting event. Kozinski is more correct in defending his healthy skepticism as being tied to some version of epistemological humility.

Catholic public intellectuals may say that they must be circumspect in what they say or publish on the internet, so that they do not become obstacles to conversion for those who are not Catholic. But if they are bound by political correctness or certain secular orthodoxies or the fear that their rejection might have adverse consequences on their professional life or career, then what use are they, really? Better to be part of that Christian "cult" and focusing their energies on building the kingdom consonant not only with circumstances of overt hostility or persecution, but with the order of charity as well.

Perhaps there is another reason why Christian "intellectuals" (i.e. teachers and preachers) should be primarily monks, religious, and clerics - they do not have to worry about protecting a career and a livelihood.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Excellent analysis. Thank you. Thous shall not be skeptical about irrational myths as long as they satisfy one's passion for scapegoating and/or one's fear of being marginalized.