This is what a totalitarian intellectual vision looks like

Intellectual opponents rendered invisible and silent. One God. One voice. One people.

Ein volk. Ein reich. Ein fuhrer.

Think about what this kind of vision means for the adult mind. The hope being expressed above is for a world mediated by fundamentalist vision in such a way that individuals not only lose access to diverse viewpoints, but don’t even want them. It is the world of the fundamentalist home schooler writ large. It is a world where dialogue has become monologue.

Fundamentalists like the woman above aren’t content with being one competing voice in a diverse world. They want dominion over the adult mind, and to be free from even the annoyance of a channel surf that lands upon ideas that they don’t like. They want opinions not to their liking shut up.

Of course, to express longing for the shutting down of argument is a sure sign that all the other methods for winning adherents to your ideology are failing, and failing miserably. Christian fundamentalism is a failed intellectual hypothesis—akin to Marxism—and thus can only fantasize about its victory and dominance by doubling down on propaganda and praying that God will force the desired outcome via a miracle. But when these things fail (as they surely will), all that’s left is force, right?

About Santi Tafarella

I teach writing and literature at Antelope Valley College in California.
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