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"Thank God for political power!"
(Dante Gabriel Rossetti. Joan of Arc kisses the sword of liberation. Source)
You've certainly heard the famous proverb:
"United we stand, divided we fall".
Perhaps you thought this proverb was so obvious, that it wasn't necessary to explain it? But then, how come our laws are becoming more and more deadly and bloody, even though the majority of citizens still claim to be Christians? How come we have to endure abortion, the legal glorification of sodomy, pornography, pagan school curriculums, anti-Christian media payed for with our taxes, etc.? Why do we lose almost all the battles, even though we outnumber the troops of the Culture of Death?
I think one of the reasons is that too many Christians have swallowed the error that can be called disunited activism:
Error: "Individual, secret and disorganized actions are better than collective, public and organized actions"
Of course, there are many other reasons for which our troops are on the run, but I'd like to concentrate on disunited activism in this article.
There are many ways to act ineffectively. Here are a few recipes to waste your time and money:
2.1) Letters to the Editor-in-Chief of your local newspaper. You've read a deceitful article? Write a letter to the Editor-in-Chief! Quite probably, it will be thrown in the recycling bin. Whether one person sends a letter, or one thousand, we can't know. Even if your letter is published, it will probably be too short to be useful, and I've never seen a newspaper show a hyperlink or a phone number in such cases, so you can't even give the readers a more reliable source of information. Another tactic of anti-Christian newspapers is to systematically publish the worst letters that defend Christianity and Natural Law! For example, a pro-abortion newspaper will either publish pro-abortion letters, or letters written by deranged neo-nazis who pretend to be pro-life.
2.2) Internet petitions. Anybody can build a small web site where we can go "vote". These "votes" are useless (because anybody can vote as often as they want), or potentially dangerous (because that site has to harvest your personal information to identify you). Moreover, even if you gather a thousand real signatures, chances are this will only be known by the rare visitors on that little web site.
2.3) E-mail storms. Modern technology permits a variation on the theme of the petition and the letter to the Editor-in-Chief: the e-mail storm. I've explained elsewhere the ineffectiveness of this method. (See Electronic Petition, or Democratic Vandalism?)
2.4) Self-canonization and passing the hot potato. Unfortunately, the most popular way of acting is simply to self-proclaim oneself a perfect citizen, and to let others solve the problems. Try this experiment to see for yourself. Ask the following question to the people you know: "Do you give five minutes a month to your country?" Most people will answer by giving you a long list of their admirable virtues, but without mentioning any directly political action. When you will point that out to them, they will spout the usual excuses, like "Politics is dirty", or "our democracy is only an illusion, so why bother getting involved", etc.
Another way of saying: «United we stand»!
Let's revisit our example of the letter to the Editor-in-Chief. If one thousand disunited activists separately write letters to protest against some typical anti-Christian libel, the newspaper will probably throw out 999 letters, and publish the worst. But what would happen if these thousand persons decided to act in a united way?
What will be the difference between 1000 letters written by disunited activists, and the same effort in time and money made by a group of 1000 united activists? In a way, the difference is easy to understand, but in another way, it's very mysterious. This mystery is called "society". Indeed, the reason why societies exist, is that by uniting, men can reach a goal that is unreachable individually. The political whole is greater than the sum of its parts. United we stand. Let's try to understand why:
3.1) Motivation. To change things, we have to want to change them! But one of the worst enemies of the will is discouragement. And what is the best way to get discouraged? It's to feel alone! One thousand isolated persons who write a letter that won't be read, quickly end up alone and discouraged. But what would happen if these same thousand persons took a few minutes to phone an association, to give their name, address, telephone and e-mail? All of a sudden, one thousand isolated persons would become one united group! Each one of those persons would feel supported by the other 999! The embers would be gathered, and each one would heat up its neighbor to light a blaze, rather than slowly burning out in a dark corner!
3.2) A spokesperson. To change things, we need to look good in the Media. We know that one of our enemies' tactics is to put cameras and microphones in front of the worst elements, those who make us look bad. But if 1000 persons form one single association, they can designate an official spokesperson. And out of 1000 persons, chances are we can find one who is articulate and courageous. Here again, as if by magic, being united gives us a new strength.
3.3) Specialization. If you randomly select 1000 persons, you'll probably get a few who can write well. In other words, out of 1000 letters written to the Editor-in-Chief, less than a dozen will probably be clear, well-written, well-documented, etc. But if you take the same 1000 persons, and you assign tasks according to tastes and talents, you'll get a completely different result! You will be able to get your letters written by the best writers (who are often math-impaired); have your flyers distributed by teenagers who make many English mistakes, but who have good legs to jump around from one mailbox to the next; have your telephone fanout built by elderly ladies, unable to jump around, but who have excellent manners on the phone; have your budget scrutinized by someone who has no manners, but who is a math whiz; etc.!
3.4) Multiplication of knowledge. Knowledge is not like matter. If you take a chocolate cake, and you divide it into 1000 pieces, each person will have a very slim slice! But if you take 1000 persons united in a group, and one of them finds out something useful, then suddenly 1000 persons will learn that useful bit of information! One thousand pairs of eyes and ears who talk to each other will quickly accumulate a lot of information!
3.5) Redundancy. Why do commercial airplanes have two pilots? Just one of them could easily fly the plane. But with two pilots, one of them can have a heart attack (or forget to lower the landing gear, or have to run off to the washroom, etc.), and the airplane won't crash! Even for a simple letter to the Editor-in-Chief, many heads are better than one, to remove English mistakes and logical fallacies, etc. Another advantage of this redundancy is that one member of the group can get sick, or leave, or be silenced by the police, etc., without the group ceasing to function.
3.6) The distribution of burdens. Have you ever tried to lift a grand piano? I have. The piano didn't budge, and I spent three days in bed with a backache. Even if a thousand persons had walked passed that piano, and each person had tried to lift it individually, the piano wouldn't have moved. But what about a thousand persons all at the same time...? It's the same thing for money. Suppose you want to correct a newspaper that published a deceitful article. You can waste one thousand 50 cent stamps, or gather the 50 cent donation from a 1000 persons and buy an ad in that paper, an ad that presents the true story (and on top of that gives a hyperlink to the web site of your association, which contains even more information).
Let's kiss the sword of political action!
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