Power is not revealed by striking hard or often, but my striking true …

Honore de Balzac

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A relationship between truth and power?  Yes.  Absolutely.

We saw this in a most dramatic way on split screen television this week when the President delivered his remarks on the “no bill” decision of the Ferguson Grand Jury while beside his image was the instantly riotous conduct of people in Ferguson.

Strikingly, our first African-American President had no sway over the African-American population in Ferguson, Missouri.  How can that be?

At bedrock, this is evidence of Balzac’s observation: there is a relationship between truth and power.  No truth, eventually – no power, no sway, no influence – over your own folks, those who voted for you, even your family.

The dynamic of this in the context of today’s culture rests on the relationship between language (the common conveyor of truth or untruth) and impotence (being powerless or ineffective).

For decades now we have reiterated the proposition that there is an antagonism between Whites and Blacks and that Whites and our institutions oppress Blacks.

This theme has become a way of thinking and experiencing life for a great many people and has been endlessly repeated in the press and media, by “racebaiters,” Leftist ideologues and opportunistic politicians for their own self-affirmation and, more importantly, their own personal and political gain.

But does any one theme capture the complexity of history or human relations? No.

Such singular, exclusionary themes are small when compared to the events of history and the scope of human behavior.  Such singular themes are reductionist and, in that and their intentional malevolent use, untrue.  No truth – no power.

And, we are back to language.  When language is used to control others, mislead for personal advantage, becomes a substitute for depth of thinking, or is employed to promote political result – it will, in time, be impotent – without power, feckless and ineffectual.

This is a lesson that is as old as man, yet seemingly unlearned, or forgotten today.

The primacy of politics and the exile of faith and its ancient narratives, as well as our elevation of “ethics” at the expense of morality, virtue and wisdom, and our willing and mindless submission to the tired dialectic of the Left makes speaking truth rare and the absence of power and legitimate authority all too present.

We once chose reason over faith.  With language conveying untruth, we now elect neither faith nor reason.  This is where we are.  This is not good.

“If you continue in my word, you are truly my disciples; and you will know the truth, and the truth will make you free.”

Jn 8:31-32

Shalom.

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