The Baby with the Bathwater


The Baby with the Bathwater

I defy any of the so called “cancel” mob to find anyone, anywhere, that doesn’t have something in their background that isn’t perfect.

Back in the day my boss was an ex FBI agent best described as a diamond in the rough. One of the pearls of wisdom he shared was the fact, as he put it, that if you look deeply enough into anyone’s closet, you will find the skeleton. His point was that maybe you didn’t want to look to closely. Investigate what you were investigating, and so be it. If we arrested everyone for whatever we found in the closet, we would have no one left to do they job we were protecting. Wise man, my old boss.

The ‘cancel culture’ we find ourselves in is spending a lot of time in all our closets. Do we really want to look there?

I don’t believe there is a so called hero, leader, or functionary whose statue we have erected that couldn’t be ‘canceled’ due to some foible in his or her life. It seems that no matter how heroic the act performed, it can be erased by some other action, no matter what its significance. A dozen “Attaboy’s” are erased by one “Oh S**t.”

It is true, of course, that some people should never have been honored. And perhaps a civil discussion should be held as to whether or not this plaque, that named building, or the other statue should be renamed or moved.

In West Virginia for instance, it’s difficult to find a public building, road, or park that isn’t named for the state’s famous senator, who was also a Kegel in the Klu Klux Klan. In Rome, you can’t swing a cat without hitting a monument, statue, or square that doesn’t honor some ancient Roman or another. Those fellows make slave owners in the south look like Mary Poppins.

I would suggest that a majority of our presidents were less than, shall we say, faithful to their marriage vows. Certainly those in recent memory, many deified in having saved the country from evil, foreign and domestic, had stains on their characters that would curl your hair.

It seems that some ‘stains’ can be forgiven, and other actions fit the agenda of the ‘cancel’ mob.

Teddy Roosevelt spoke eloquently about the “Man in the Arena.” (Back off feminists, TR was the leading pro woman politician of his era.) Teddy spoke about the heroes that actually got out there, win or lose, and were bloodied in battle, whether it was in war, or in the public arena of politics, business, or academia. I laugh at the cancel cowards who use social media, hiding behind pseudonyms and take after those, who in some cases that gave their lives for our country.

It’s that pesky freedom of speech. People can say whatever they want, and in doing so can destroy a person’s career, reputation, family, or way of life. I wonder what would happen if in exchange for “cancelling” a person, the ‘canceller’ would have to voluntarily subject him/herself to a deep dive background check with the results published for all to see.

My old boss would just laugh at people holding one person up for honor, while denigrating another. There is always something in the closet.


Picture of John Van Horn

John Van Horn

2 Responses

  1. “Why do you look at the speck of sawdust in your brother’s eye and pay no attention to the plank in your own eye? How can you say to your brother, ‘Let me take the speck out of your eye,’ when all the time there is a plank in your own eye? You hypocrite, first take the plank out of your own eye, and then you will see clearly to remove the speck from your brother’s eye.” – Matthew 7:3-5, NIV

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