Jason Peters on Allen Ginsberg: Mocking the Fear-Mongers

There was a lot of talk last week in the ramp up to being ramped up. Some cyber-pulpits wondered what others might be saying come nine eleven (comments contemplating the impropriety and potential dangers of such preaching importing false hopes in particular nation-states and alienating those from others need not apply, by the way. Maybe it was suggesting how “Sanctity of Life Sunday” sermons are in the same erroneous ballpark?) .

Some took the opportunity fight more culture war and pass it off as concern for the weak.

Others waited until the dust settled to helpfully point out that ten years should yield more reflection and prudence than trembling. To that end, Jason Peters serves up some thoughts that, granted, may not be fitting for a pulpit. But they’re pretty edifying nevertheless:

“Knock, knock.” “Who’s there?” “9/11.” “9/11 who?” “You said you’d never forget!”

It would be difficult to find any humor in this if you were still mourning, ten years later, the loss of a son or daughter. I fully acknowledge that. But the object of its satirical jab is nothing less than our immense capacity in times of great pitch and moment to surrender all thought to the sloganeers. If we wish to be a people capable of ceremony, propriety and meaningful remembrance, we’re going to have to resist prefabricated thought. We’re going to have to refuse to write our holy litanies in silly moods. And we’re going to have to enact a particularizing love in particular places, not in the any places where the scoundrels are taking refuge.

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