There is a contemporary desire in the political world to cast some – actually any – affront as a “War on” something. The “War on Christmas” or the “War on Women” are but a couple of examples. Each of these groups have their supporters but both are largely based on the perceptions of actions of others and they are not the “war”, these are merely battles.The war being waged is much more dangerous – it is a war on objectivity.
The Internet Encyclopedia of Philosophy defines objectivity this way:
“The terms “objectivity” and “subjectivity,” in their modern usage, generally relate to a perceiving subject (normally a person) and a perceived or unperceived object. The object is something that presumably exists independent of the subject’s perception of it. In other words, the object would be there, as it is, even if no subject perceived it. Hence, objectivity is typically associated with ideas such as reality, truth and reliability.”
As my friend Bill Shakespeare would say, “Aye, there’s the rub.”
Note also that this definition uses the antithesis of objective to assist in understanding the meaning – subjectivity. Subjectivity rests on perception, and they go on to elucidate the danger of perception:
“The perceiving subject can either perceive accurately or seem to perceive features of the object that are not in the object. For example, a perceiving subject suffering from jaundice could seem to perceive an object as yellow when the object is not actually yellow. Hence, the term “subjective” typically indicates the possibility of error.”
So perception is not reality – perceptions can be accurate or inaccurate, correct or in error. Contrary to what our progressive, postmodernist friends believe, there is such a thing as objective reality. It can be hidden in complexity, even in a complexity so great as to not be discernable, but objective reality exists. If we cannot comprehend it, we often assign it the title of “absurdity” but that does not mean it doesn’t exist.
Take my friend Billy Shakespeare as an example. Pretty good writer, better dramatist and an outstanding satirist – but still an ODEWD (an Old Dead European White Dude). Why is it that through the years, we see the plots of his plays repeated over and over with varying degrees of success? Why is it that the most successful movies and TV series are structured on plot lines used by the Bard (he lets his friends call him that)? Why is it that the TV series with the biggest ratings have been “procedural” dramas that effectively follow the same formula from week to week, year to year, only with different timelines, set dressings and actors? How many programs about things “ripped from the headlines” about hospitals, police departments and law firms can there really be?
The truth is that even the Bard is a rip-off artist because the themes of his plays go all the way back to the Greek and Roman comedies and tragedies but like Dick Wolf and Donald P. Bellisario, he keeps true to the objective truths of the plots, all they have really changed is how we PERCIEVE them. Weighty, immense problems of terrorism, self-doubt and corruption are introduced at the top of the hour, by the time 43-45 minutes have ticked off (allowing for commercial breaks) some objective truth has been realized and we find out that it wasn’t ghosts after all, it was creepy old Mr. Wickles (gratuitous Scooby Do reference). Sometimes it takes a very special two hour cross-over event to get there – but we eventually do get to a satisfactory endpoint…a logical conclusion.
Progressive ideology depends on people never recognizing objective reality. It depends on people railing about how the steak sizzles, not the quality of the meat (or even if the steak really even exists). Many contemporary “movements”, the blacklivesmatter “movement” in particular, are based on events (Hands up, don’t shoot!) that are objectively false but are sustained by perpetuation of a perception of offense (white cops are hunting young, unarmed black men) that the authorities are too afraid to correct for fear of violent reaction – or the correction would end the group’s political usefulness.
The problem is this – uncorrected perception will become a sort of pseudo-objective truth (i.e. conventional wisdom) if it is not effectively countered with objective fact. This is why progressives tend to prevaricate and dissemble and why truth is the political right’s most effective weapon. Objectivity is their biggest nightmare. That is why they must wage war against it.