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Relativism Is Everywhere
by Thomas A. Droleskey

October 23, 2000

Each of us knows how relativism controls practically every single aspect of our social life. We know that contraception, abortion, euthanasia, divorce and remarriage without a decree of nullity, pornography, sodomy, sex instruction, and a host of other evils are founded in relativism. However, there are many hidden ways in which relativism has manifested itself quite insidiously in our national life.

Relativism may be defined as the belief that there are no absolute truths that exist in the nature of things and bind all human consciences at all times. Relativists believe that both morality and reality are relative to the individual person, dependent upon the circumstances of time, place, and the motives of individuals. Reality and morality are culture-bound. Different people in different cultures can have different beliefs and values, all of which contain equal possibilities of being true. Socrates himself debated with the relativists of his own day, the Sophists, who contended that man is the measure of all things and that all things are negotiable. Socrates quite adeptly pointed out that the Sophists (the forerunners of our modern relativists) believed in a complete and total absurdity: the very belief that nothing is absolutely true is itself an absolute belief and thereby a contradiction of their self-serving contention that nothing is true.

Nevertheless, relativism is the basis of American education, both public and (in many instances) parochial. The goal of outcome-based education, for example, is to empty academic subjects of objective content. Educators must reaffirm the “self-esteem” of their students by refraining from correcting any errors they might make in spelling or grammar or mathematics or history or geography. Objectively incorrect errors must be called “creative answers” derived by imaginative pupils (who must be praised for their originality). Students so indemnified from correction of their mistakes come to believe that there is nothing they can do that is wrong, especially concerning their personal moral conduct. It is, sadly, the case that by the time most of those students arrive at college, they actually come to resent any professor who dares correct anything they do. That attitude is carried over into the workplace once students graduate from college, causing all manner of conflicts with employers who demand that their employees actually know things pertinent to their field of employment.

However, some of the seemingly more intelligent graduates of outcome-based and ideologically based education programs wind up planning and administering corporate programs and policies that are based in relativism. Indeed, the New Age movement (which is relativistic) controls much of the ambiance of the workplace in corporate America today. Reality is what the company says it is. That Orwellian construct, which relies upon mind-numbed robots who have been robbed of their capacity to rationally and logically think their way through to conclusions, is designed to create an atmosphere in which profits can be maximized, employees can be reduced to the level of automatons, and customers can be treated as utilitarian objects whose very humanity must be subordinated to the demands of the synthetic world created by corporate relativists.

Indeed, an entire culture of relativism has been created in corporations, which use New Age “sensitivity training” to advance all manner of ideological goals, especially as it relates to the promotion of sodomy. Also important to the “reality” of corporate America is to force all Christians to remove any displays of their religious faith from the workplace — and to refuse to grant concessions to Catholics who want to observe the Holy Days of Obligation or to make their Sunday Mass obligation. Those who are caught telling politically offensive jokes must be disciplined. And it is in that culture of corporate relativism that employees must be programmed to reject common sense and plain truth in order to maintain the facade created by the corporation.

For example, the bright lights who run the telephone companies that provide directory-assistance information have decided that it is more cost-effective to regionalize their operations. Thus, the products of outcome-based education who are hired to provide you with the telephone number you are requesting are most likely totally ignorant of the area where the person or the business whose number you are trying to find is situated. In most instances, corporate policy requires them to provide a number within nineteen seconds. Consequently, the person who is requesting the information is depersonalized. Gone are the days when the local Bell Telephone Company hired operators familiar with a particular area who were trained to skim and scan through the white pages with the eyes God gave them — a particularly efficient form of providing information and something the old “information operators” took great pride in — so the operator must look up the number in a computerized “file,” which may or may not contain the number you want.

If the computerized file does not contain your number, the operator tells you that the number does not exist (when the actual truth of the matter is that the telephone number you want is not listed in that particular system). If you try to explain that the number does exist (perhaps you had just gotten it but failed to write it down), you are considered to be a crank who must be cut off immediately. The line goes dead as you are, in effect, aborted. The relativism that guides corporate America has taught employees to believe only what is found in a computer file. Any argument to the contrary must not be brooked, as “reality” for one particular corporation is what it says it is, the actual facts of a matter notwithstanding.

As is the case with almost every major corporation in the country, employees who deal with customers are no longer courteous and respectful. Common sense? Perish the thought. Employees have been trained not to think for themselves. Considering the customer to be a distinct human being made in the image and likeness of God? Come on, there are profits to be made and realities to be maintained. Customers must be “talked down” when they present problems to customer-service representatives. That is, employees are taught never to admit that the corporation is wrong. That would be fodder for lawsuits and bad publicity, after all. Thus, employees are taught to wear the customer down by stonewalling him so much that he just gives up in frustration. Truth is what the corporation says it is. Plain facts must be denied. Corporate America is producing a veritable army of future Bill Clintons and Al Gores.

Telephone companies are particularly adept at creating their own reality insofar as billing is concerned. A minute may be less than sixty seconds in some instances. A billing period may be twenty-eight days some months, twenty-nine other months, yet thirty to thirty-three in other months. It’s all relative, right? And you may think you live in a distinctive community, one that is recognized by the august United States Postal Service with its own ZIP code. Indeed, the community in which you live may be incorporated by your state as a village or city or a town with its own municipal government. No matter to the phone companies. I pay rent to keep my belongings (and occasionally my little self) in an apartment in Bethpage, New York. It is an unincorporated village in the Town of Oyster Bay in the County of Nassau on Long Island (which is a geographical entity, not a political subunit of the State of New York). What does Verizon (which used to be Bell Atlantic and NYNEX and New York Telephone Company) list on my bill when I call home to check for messages? Bethpage becomes Hicksville, another unincorporated village where I did actually reside for twenty months between April of 1990 and August of 1992. But I haven’t lived in Hicksville since I left there over eight years ago to move to Sioux City, Iowa, for the year that I taught at Morningside College. Tell that to Verizon. Bethpage is Hicksville in Verizon’s self-created world. Yes, everything is relative.

Relativism has even made its way into baseball, especially under the “leadership” of the ever politically correct Commissioner Allan H. “Bud” Selig. In Selig’s world Marge Schott must be punished for unplanned insensitive statements while Ted Turner must go unpunished for deliberately malicious attacks on Catholics and Protestant Christians. (Turner repeated his attack on Christianity at the United Nations Millennium Conference recently. Idiot that he is, it probably did not dawn on Turner — or on the assortment of tyrants and murderers ruling the world’s nations who gathered for the conference — that the millennium they were celebrating belongs to our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ!) Selig has strongly suggested that the thirty clubs composing Major League Baseball designate one home game a year to “AIDS awareness.” He is a master of making his own reality, something he did quite consistently in his correspondence with me over the Ted Turner business in 1999.

There are many other ways in which relativism has worked its way into the game of baseball itself. The Official Baseball Rule Book spells out in quite some detail what constitutes the strike zone. Major League umpires, however, largely make up their own strike zone, calling pitches that are visibly out of the strike zone as strikes in many instances (and calling many strikes as balls). Some umpires who work behind home plate calling balls and strikes in a particular game are so inconsistent that neither the pitchers nor the batters have any idea what the umpire will call a particular pitch, though a good deal of the art of both hitting and pitching depends upon decisions that are based on the type of pitch that will be thrown and where it will be targeted. An inconsistent strike zone leads to a diminution of performance in a world where the official rules are superseded by the whims of one who creates a reality of his own making.

Even the spherical object known as a baseball has itself been the subject of relativism and its natural offshoot, social engineering. A study has concluded that the manufacture of baseballs has been changed so as to make them fly faster and farther when hit forcibly by the vortex of a swung bat. In other words, Selig and his fellow relativists wanted to produce more home runs because home runs put people in the seats, something that means money in the bank accounts of the owners, enabling them to pay their overpaid players and have something left over for themselves. The beauty of a well-pitched game? Largely a thing of the past. The great national pastime must be tailored to meet the needs of a relativistic world.

As I have demonstrated on a number of occasions, relativism is rife within the Church herself. Bishops, chancery officials, priests, directors of religious education, theologians, liturgists, and a variety of “pastoral ministers” have created a synthetic religion that has no relation to the true faith. A synthetic, relativistic theology has been created. Anyone who dissents from that theology is a heretic and troublemaker. Those who point out how bishops and their minions have misrepresented the doctrine of the Church — say, as Bishop Robert N. Lynch continues to do with respect to solemn Eucharistic exposition in the Diocese of St. Petersburg — must be denounced without regard for nasty little things known as facts. Those who continue to foster our synthetic liturgy have created a world where the Mass is simply a community banquet and where people cannot sin seriously unless they have made a “fundamental option” against God. Reality is what those people say it is, thereby deceiving a lot of good Catholics who look askance when others try to inform them with actual facts and Vatican documents about the truth of a particular matter.

The relativism facing us today in all aspects of our national life has many roots. The remote cause for relativism is, of course, to be found in the Fall from Grace in the Garden of Eden. Original Sin has given rise to all efforts to deny reality, to make ourselves the equal of God Himself. Relativism is simply one of those efforts. It has been given expression by the Sophists of Athens and the Epicureans of the declining Roman Empire.

Although eclipsed by the triumph of the true Faith in Europe during the course of the first millennium, relativism underwent a renaissance during the Renaissance (which really gave rebirth to the old sophistries of the Sophists). Secular relativism, which quickened during the so-called Enlightenment and made itself manifest in violent terms during the French Revolution, found an ally in the theological relativism of Martin Luther and John Calvin. For it was the theological relativism let loose on the world by Luther that helped expedite the triumph of all forms of relativism. If the truths of our Lord can be relativized into meaninglessness, then, as Pope Leo XIII noted in Immortale Dei in 1885, atheism becomes the norm.

A world that rejects our Lord and the authority of his true Church must create a reality of its own. But it is only the true Faith that guides us to see reality clearly by fixing our gaze always upon the wood of the Holy Cross, upon which our Divine Redeemer saved us by the shedding of every single drop of His Most Precious Blood. We must never waver in our insistence that the world and everyone in it must be converted to the true Faith. For the clarity of vision given us by the Church is the means by which we can see the plain reality that the tendency of human beings to equate themselves with God is what leads to all of the crime and horror and bloodshed and dehumanization that are the fruits of all forms of relativism.

Invoking our Lady’s maternal intercession, may we always stand fast in our efforts to pray and to work for a world wherein the shadow of the Holy Cross defines the reality of who we are — and how we are to treat others as fellow redeemed creatures.

Our Lady, Seat of Wisdom, pray for us.
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