Today Rick (me) spoke about the inherent worth and dignity of people in China and their relationship to the government in contrast to the inherent worth and dignity of Americans and their relationship to their government. The Chinese national mythology is one of harmony and on the one hand and outright warfare on the other. China has a history and a self-image of civil strife and warfare between groups. They built a wall in ancient times and fortified it in a serious way. Today China is constructing a wall in a manner of speaking by building their fleet and occupying a series of islands far out to sea. Their national mythology is based on the idea that if they can fortify it, they can have it. In America we have a very different self image. In America we don’t see ourselves as an aggressive acquisitive people even though we have a long history of being aggressive and acquisitive. In our history books we don’t even talk much about the war with Mexico in 1846 or the Spanish American war in 1898 let alone all the little undeclared wars we created by our occupations of Cuba, Haiti and Panama in the early 1900’s. Our aggressive sense of our identity is the man with a gun who believes he has the legal authority to use it. I don ‘t know where this leads, but it does mean that we in the U.S. will not be curbing our armaments for many years.
Come join us some Sunday. We talk about the world and our relationships with the other inhabitants of it. We believe live is an interesting journey more than it is an interesting destination.