Humankind has reached many remarkable milestones during the development of civilization. The wheel was discovered roughly 7000 years ago, writing about 5000 years back, and oil paint and optics some 2500 years ago. We’ve experienced advances and setbacks in societies over the years, but the concepts that have allowed humans to be efficient and reasonably organized in the world have steadily advanced throughout time… almost.In today’s Daily Sun (12/9/17) I observe a story about a piece of art depicting a woman’s anatomy carefully decorated with arcane food items, and the response by some is to protect adolescent boys from seeing such a horrible image. The response, I guess, is that we should shield such fragile hormonal creatures from the entire Renaissance period, much of Egyptian history, and a good portion of ancient Greco-Roman culture. Those advances in civilization should be ignored, forgotten, or burned at the stake, I suppose.The Age of Enlightenment began 300 years ago. It brought the scientific method, freedom of individual thought, profound philosophical insights, and other tidbits of consciousness that laid our country’s conceptual foundation.
Today’s political climate appears determined to abolish enlightenment in its entirety. When art cannot be viewed as an expression of fundamental humanity, we all lose. When the foundations of science are openly attacked using archaic reasoning, we all lose. When the separation between church and state is deliberately muddied to advance supremacist viewpoints, we all lose.
In one year, the United States has devolved into an Age of Darkness.