The View From 1776

Cultural Falsehoods

The Duke lacrosse team fiasco shows that liberals, especially educators, have created a phony cultural paradigm that distorts reality and prevents clear-sighted analysis of the truth.

Myron Magnet, in City Journal, dissects the 1960s and 1970s cultural paradigm that gained ascendency during the Baby Boomer student anarchist era. It’s a must-read.

Using the notorious miscarriage of justice in the Duke University lacrosse team case, he exposes the deeper, false cultural roots that support, indeed almost guarantee, repetitions of the phenomenon everywhere in the United States today.

The hodge-podge of contradictory cliches that passes for intellectually-approved culture today is a far cry from the unwritten constitution that Thomas Jefferson described as “the harmonizing sentiments of [1776], whether expressed in conversations, in letters, printed essays, or the elementary books of public right, as Aristotle, Cicero, Locke, Sidney, etc.?

Though Mr. Magnet doesn’t dwell upon it, this liberal-Progressive paradigm is merely the hubristic presumption, in modern clothing, of ivory-tower French Enlightenment philosophers.  They believed, as do today’s liberal-Progressives, that, in Darwinian fashion, human nature is continually evolving and that intellectuals can corral and manipulate the factors that impel the putative evolution.

As has almost always been true with liberal intellectuals, they sincerely believe that their remaking of our cultural paradigm will benefit humanity.  The problem is that their version of social justice always has proved to be ineffective, if not disastrously destructive.

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