The brutal cynic. Sometimes people mindlessly place me into this category, a kind of reactionary statement against hyperbole and dysfunction. I don’t generally disagree with the comparison, but every now and then, as I am sitting trapped between rays of Sunday-afternoon light, the darkest things on Earth, I am sure that it is flawed.
The fundamental problem is that the cynic is always, at some deep level, speaking in jest. Put a gun in his hand and he won’t shoot. At the moment of truth, he’ll break, “cynical” about the bullets as much as he is “cynical” about the target’s heart.
Beyond the flincher there is yet another level of cynicism… that level at which gun in hand is gold. The level at which a pulled trigger is a dialectical hiccup, enough to generate a tiny shift in status quo, the most minor of satisfactions for the most minor of role players…
But perhaps this isn’t actually a brutal form of cynicism at all? Perhaps pulling the trigger… perhaps putting a pile of minor functionaries against the wall… is the most brilliant, the most binding form of optimism…
Can you save some of the people by killing the others, the ones who sit atop the pile and sneer? At what point is revolution transcended? At what point does the savior become the monster?
I am unable to cope with such ethical questions.
All I’ve ever wanted was to find something beautiful, something that I could share with everyone else, something that wouldn’t be destroyed by business or politics or humanity… But it is humanity that I love…
How can I reconcile the paradox?
It rained today… whether that is an optimistic or a cynical statement I can’t yet determine. Into everyones’ lives… a little rain must fall.
(A little prayer for the living, from an atheist. Amen.)