On Wednesday’s episode of “The Andrew Klavan Show,” Klavan talks about the difficulty of facing and remembering harsh truths. Video and partial transcript below:
It’s the 18th anniversary of 9/11, and every 9/11, someone says we will never forget. These words, like the words “unicorn” or “free health care” or “Islamophobia,” are nonsense words: Words that describe things … that simply don’t exist. We always forget; we have to forget. It’s the way societies move forward, and it’s the way they die, and these things have to be. It’s God’s will.
Here are some of the things we learned on 9/11 that we’ve forgotten. Multiculturalism is crap. There are better cultures, bad cultures, and even worse cultures. Ours is better not because we’re better people, but because we’ve inherited better ideas like individual freedom and equality before the law. Those are better ideas than government by Allah, and dressing up women like the Spirit of Christmas Yet To Come so they can’t fully participate in life. Better ideas make better cultures, and better cultures must be defended by both wisdom and force of arms — or worse cultures will conquer and destroy them.
On 9/11, we also remembered briefly that men must be men. The policemen and firemen who charged into the burning buildings to try to save people were essential men, necessary men — men worthy of our honor and respect because they lived up to the responsibility of their manhood, which reminds us of another inescapable truth. There is only one necessary task of human life, and that is to make and nurture more human life. This is a task that nature has assigned to women. It is in order to protect and preserve that task, and the women who do it, that men must be men. Brave, protective, supportive, and dispassionately wise.
When societies feel rich and safe and prosperous, they put such truths out of their minds and they turn to fluffy nonsense like “irony” or “pumpkin latte” or “redefining marriage” or letting boys dress up as girls or promising everybody everything for free. The essential divide between conservatives and leftists is that conservatives want society to always live under the restraints of the essential truths, and leftists want to take advantage of history’s little holidays when some nation like ours becomes strong enough and rich enough to make everyone feel like it’s safe to forget the rules and party.
There’s some wisdom on both sides. If your society is so powerful it can spare a few men to do inessential tasks like writing books or musical comedies, that’s better than everyone having to man the front lines. If you can allow some women to leave off baby-making and child-rearing, maybe some of them will enjoy doing something else more. That’s fine. It’s tolerant and kind to accept gay relationships if you’re living in inessential times, so why not do it. But the gods of the copy-book headings, the gods of the essential truths, are always waiting to return with terror and slaughter as they did [on] this day 18 years ago. And when you denounce motherhood or manhood, when you squander your resources and disrespect your traditions, those gods start sharpening their swords.
This is a very sad world, and one of the saddest things about this world is also one of the most comical: People lie. Everyone lies, everyone lies to himself and to everyone else. We say things that are absurd and ridiculous and then we insist that they’re true. People lie when they can, and only face the truth when they must. On 9/11, we were forced to face the truth — a lot of truths — and now, by the necessity of human nature, we have forgotten. We always do.