In Paris, undertaking a peripatetic study of Jean de LaFontaine’s Fables from the 1600s, I sometimes feel like the dusty old story has been ripped from the headlines.
Here’s one about The Wolf and The Sheep:
Power’s reasons are always the best. We’ll see that in a moment.
The Lamb was drinking from the pure waters of a babbling brook. A hungry wolf, in search of a bit of adventure, and drawn by his hunger, happened upon the banks.
Who gave you the balls to pollute my drinking spot? The Wolf said, full of rage. You will be punished for your temerity.
My Lord, said The Lamb, may it please your Majesty not to be angry. Consider the facts, I was drinking from the stream, yes, but twenty feet below Your Majesty, therefore in no way could I have been polluting your drink.
You’re polluting, the cruel wolf reprised. And anyway, last year you were talking trash about me.
How could I have done that, when I wasn’t even born? The Lamb said. I’m still nursing.
So, if it wasn’t you, it was your brother.
But, I don’t have one.
Well, it was one of yours. None of you people are ever nice to me, you, your shepherds, your dogs. I was always told growing up that I would have to have vengeance.
And right now, you’re pissing me off. This hearing is over. There and then, The Wolf carried The Lamb off into the forest and ate it.
What more needs to be said about the predatory nature of Power (aka The Wolf, of course)? The way Power likes to wrap itself in the mantle of reason, pretend that it is exercising a right. Pretend that logic, common sense, and even communal need, justify the way Power likes to throw itself around. But all of the so-called reasons on which Power bases its actions are nothing more than a smokescreen for Power’s true motive and rationale: Might makes right. A naked, graceless phrase that mocks the weak, that says, not only will you not inherit the earth, we’re going to make you watch as we steal your inheritance, as we kill your schoolchildren and rape your women, as we take all the bounty that we might share with ease and keep it for ourselves alone.
Power is greedy and venal and weak, raised to blame the rest of the world. See how Power yearns for respect, longs to be flattered (oh no, were you saying mean things about me?? tweet, tweet, tweet, waah-waah). But in the end, when Power can’t win respect with its schoolyard bullying, Power does what it does best. Power exerts itself and destroys us. Justice — what? Human rights — hunh? Peace — is that even a word?
Sound familiar? There are so many public figures (with bad comb-overs) or corporations or governments or organizations I could insert for The Wolf.
For today, this: I believe that the Second Amendment of the U.S. Constitution enshrines Power. I believe that we are lambs, trying to reason with the wolves, with our supplications for gun laws. The Second Amendment must be repealed. Nothing can change so long as gun ownership is seen as a “right” and not as the reasonless “might” that it is.