Home » Liberty » Not Knowing

Click on image to purchase

Olduvai III: Catacylsm
Click on image to purchase

Post categories

Post Archives by Category

Not Knowing

Not Knowing

The verbs we use
to confirm or refute our acceptance
of the beliefs and worldviews of those we know,
comprise a sort of code, like
a hidden handshake, or a shaken fist.

We are asked whether we condone or condemn
a certain behaviour, but
the meaning of condone
(other than as a rarely-used synonym of gift)
dates back only to 1962: first deployed
as a barbed word
in the rhetoric of Cold War brinksmanship.

The words are straitjackets,
and you will be damned — condemned
if you do not wear them, willingly.

You must wear one or the other.

If you wear the condone jacket, you are evil,
a monster, an apologist,
and must be shunned by those seeing you wear it.
If you wear the condemn jacket, you are virtuous,
but must then also be prepared
to condone any retribution
for what you have ‘agreed’ to condemn.

This straitjacket is reversible.

You are with us, or you are with the enemy.
There is no third choice
of just trying to understand, of admitting
to not knowing, but asserting
there must be a reason for everything,
no matter how awful.

To those who condemn, that is condoning.
To those who condone, that is condemning.
Make up your mind, they say:
pick the bad guy, someone to blame.
Not knowing is not acceptable.

You cannot sit on a barbed-wire fence.

Perhaps this is why we are so aghast
at the possibility that we have no free will.
We will accept any explanation,
no matter how convoluted or lame
that grants us some control, some responsibility,
some room for blame and judgement.

After all, we could never do what they’ve done,
you know?

Olduvai IV: Courage
Click on image to read excerpts

Olduvai II: Exodus
Click on image to purchase

Click on image to purchase @ FriesenPress