Our parish priest told us, yesterday, that apathy wasn't acceptable when it came to voting. He's right.
I am quite "apathetic" in some culturally-normative senses of the word: and that's not likely to change. I'm not defying the priest. It's a matter of what "apathetic" means in different contexts. Here's how I explained it in the other blog. This excerpt is right after a short discussion of "lemming" as an epithet.
"...Apathy, of course, was anathema to the anguished campus activists of the sixties and seventies. The cultural pressure to care: deeply, passionately, hysterically; led to the slogan 'Apathy is Rampant, But Who Cares?' I still treasure the sight of those words, emblazoned on a bumper sticker. Or maybe it was in a magazine.Considering some of the epithets flung at folks who don't march in step with America's dominant culture, "apathetic" isn't all that bad.
"That's where I come in.
"I'm apathetic. I must be. I think that
"A quick review:
- "The spotted owl will flourish, as long as there are virgin ponderosa pine forests and K-Mart signs for them to nest in.
- "It's not necessary to retrofit everyone's home with wheelchair ramps and/or elevators to upper floors (I'm not making this up: it could have become a plank in one party's platform)
- "Protecting union members from plutocratic oppressors who tear bread from the bleeding lips of the starving masses isn't quite the issue that it was a century ago
"Lemming is an epithet meaning a stupid, easily led person. Given that a 'lemming' is someone who is so un-Timothy-Leary-like as to not 'turn on, tune in, drop out,' and has been known to have a job, I must be a lemming.
"I can live with that.
"Apathy can be defined as not caring about what is supposed to be important. What is considered important, and what's not, in America seems to be determined in the coastal cultures. Since my priorities don't even come close to the stereotype Starbucks-frequenting, Armani-wearing, New York Times reader, I must be 'apathetic.'
"I can live with that, too...."
("About the Lemming," in Apathetic Lemming of the North)
I'm not likely to change the name of that blog. I'm "apathetic:" but only in the sense that I don't care "deeply, passionately, irrationally - about issues. Some issues, anyway." (Apathetic Lemming of the North (March 13, 2009))
That sort of "apathy" kept me shoveling through nonsense, looking for nuggets of fact. Like a prospector following a trail of gold to its mother lode, I kept going until I became a Catholic.
And that's another topic.
- "Weak-Minded: Like Copernicus"
(October 3, 2010)
- "Why State Definitions of Marriage Matter to This Catholic"
(June 23, 2010)
- "Life: It's a Single Issue, and an Important One"
(November 2, 2008)
- "Elections, Abortion, Voting, Conscience, and Other Troublesome Topics"
(November 1, 2008)
- "Elections and Citizenship, Catholic Style"
(September 24, 2008)