Thursday, September 07, 2006

Politics vs. Lodge: a losing battle?

Those of us who find conservative politics to be repugnant take comfort in the notion that our Chapters and Lodges are meant to be neutral territory, where we can choose to experience what's good in people whether we agree with them on such issues or not.

This could be self-delusion, in many ways.

Perhaps our Orders aren't neutral ground at all, but rather have been overtaken and are dominated by backward thinking, which in turn shapes and governs our institutions and their priorities and directions. (That would explain quite a few things.)

Perhaps it is folly to try to compartmentalize away aspects of ourselves that are part of our passion or our intellect (well, some of us choose to involve our intellects) or our daily lives outside of our Orders, and thus it is no surprise that we do such a poor job at it.

Perhaps a Sister or Brother's conservative views are so repugnant that we shouldn't fraternize with them.

Perhaps in our silence, we are not only naïve, but complicit.

Perhaps our Orders don't do anything worthwhile enough to justify the effort.

In our Lodge-as-neutral-territory worldview, the true and proper fraternal response to a conservative email-bomb is generous use of the Delete key. The problem is, by doing so we never uncover the issues and can never learn the answers to any of the above questions.