After coming at the thing from the wrong direction, like looking through binoculars backwards, I have finally digested a few of Lovecraft’s stories. I can think of no other single author who has exerted such profound influence on so many works of film and literature that I hold dear.
So now I finally have an appropriate anthology at my bedside (paper, not electronic), and I begin to understand why Neil Gaiman, Alan Moore, John Carpenter and so many others hold this obscure author from Providence, RI in such high esteem. And it would please me to discuss with each of you the infinite dread this man contemplated, the way in which he saw human existence as among the most insignificant phenomena in the universe, and the way we are all saved by our inability to conceive of the greater chaos and darkness that lurks just out of sight, waiting to swallow us whole for no reason whatsoever. It is truly chilling.
But even after the briefest examination of Lovecraft’s few published works, there is another, equally nauseating aspect of his writing which all to readily asserts itself. It is one thing for an author to possess certain traits that I find disagreeable. I need not share identical political, social or religious views with any artist whose work I admire. But here, the problem is that the ignorance, the hatred, the racism, the anti-semitism is all right there in the work. And it too is horrifying.
What do we make if all this? How much can we ignore or forgive or explain away? I look forward to delving into the learned discussions to see what the scholars suggest. But, for now, I am baffled.
I am so sick of Sarah Palin. She is a dimwitted fool who holds no political office. She is a racist, a bigot and completely insulting to those feminists who actually know what that term means. I have often thought, with regard to the excessive piling on that the left does at Ms. Palin’s expense, why bother? Why give her any more attention? That’s exactly what she wants. Just don’t pay any attention to her and that will be the end of it.
But one could say the same thing about Facebook – why complain? You don’t like it, just leave it alone. But if you follow me on Facebook or Twitter, then you know that I’m not inclined to leave it alone. There are too many people on Facebook. It has achieved a firm foothold, like a tick that is dug in deep, and ignoring it can lead to dire consequences.
After the absurdity of Ms. Palin’s own tweets over the past few days, I feel that the same is true. We ignore her and her ignorance at our peril. These two pearls confirm it. Talkingpointsmemo has the complete analysis, but the two key points are that (1) any Muslim who wants the mosque near ground zero is not peaceful, and (2) refudiate is obviously not a word. Whoever among her handlers that is allowing this woman to use twitter should be fired. But, like any experienced tweeter, Palin deleted the above, but rather than admit she did anything wrong, we got the following.
I want to know which works of Shakespeare this woman has read, that she would compare herself to the greatest writer the English language has yet known. And please, gentle ex-governor, do tell which words the bard made up, so that we might learn from you ample knowledge.
But when I read about young Ryan Murdough, running for political office in New Hampshire, I realize there is good reason to worry about ignorance and hatred. If there is no effort to make note of these frightening politicians, their influence will spread unchecked.
So, on I rant.