By Franklin C. West
Publication via West, Franklin C.
Read or Download A Crisis of the Weimar Republic: A Study of the German Referendum of 20 June 1926 (Memoirs of the American Philosophical Society) PDF
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Extra resources for A Crisis of the Weimar Republic: A Study of the German Referendum of 20 June 1926 (Memoirs of the American Philosophical Society)
When it fails, as it does all too often, people in power forget how to be ashamed. A world leader may feel himself invulnerable and so desecrate his office with a tawdry affair. A captain of industry may feel herself outside the law and so seek to destroy competition by any means that come to hand. The head of a nation may feel that he is right to destroy a people in his territory who lack the strength to save themselves. The leader of a religious sect may claim that she speaks with the full authority of the one true God.
The emotions should be our allies, not our enemies or our slaves. The need for self-control is a sign of undeveloped virtue. In the case of the cold-cocked umpire, it is partly right to say that the father should have been able to control his anger. Anyone who is prone to anger at the wrong times had better learn to control it, or else prepare for a life in jail. But this way of thinking is misleading, because it suggests that the father’s major failing was in self-control. The father’s real weakness was in reverence.
Or for any other virtue as the source of feelings. You must grow up with a virtue in order to appreciate it. Janice has grown up with very little ceremony in her life and no appreciation for reverence. I can see that she has a vacuum in her mind where some people have a fountain of strong feelings. But she can’t see that now, and no philosophical argument will change her into the sort of person who would see it. Voting is a ceremony. It is an expression of reverence—not for our government or our laws, not for anything man-made, but for the very idea that ordinary people are more important than the juggernauts that seem to rule them.
A Crisis of the Weimar Republic: A Study of the German Referendum of 20 June 1926 (Memoirs of the American Philosophical Society) by Franklin C. West