November 15, 2012
Dear T.S. Eliot:
I learned about you in high school and college. You were a famous poet. You died in 1965, they say. But I hear you’ve been voting Democrat in our elections ever since, so there’s a chance that you might read this.
Among your most famous poems, and longest, was “The Waste Land,” published in 1922. Its most famous line is “April is the cruelest month,” a sentiment shared by most American taxpayers. Scholars say you wrote this poem to express your disillusionment with the decay of morality and culture in the Western world, following World War I.
Brother, I’m here to tell you that you didn’t have a clue as to what a Waste Land really is. You being out of the loop these days, this letter is to set you straight.
Have you ever heard rap music? No, I didn’t think so. Turned on a TV set and watched the Kardashians? Played a video game called “Zombie Blood Lust”?
But those are only the outlying fringes of the vast, perishing wasteland that is the Western world today. The better for you to appreciate that you were living in a paradise in 1922, let me take you on a little tour of what it looks like now, 92 years later.
You had a fondness for the intellectual life, having attended great universities and taught at elite prep schools—the best and brightest, and all that. You might find this hard to believe, but damned near everybody goes to college nowadays. Every year our temples of higher learning crank out millions of graduates with degrees in subjects that you never heard of—like Women’s Studies, Queer Studies, Surfing, History of Comic Books, or Diversity Counseling. They say there’s a goldfish that got a master’s degree in Animal Rights, and would’ve earned a Ph. D. if he hadn’t been eaten by someone’s cat.
Most of those graduates wind up living with their parents and clerking at convenience stores, if they can get a job at all. To accommodate the rest of them, the universities continually expand. Meanwhile, America’s college students are collectively more than $1 trillion in debt.
You were very fond of the church, especially the Anglican Church, which you joined. You’d hardly know it for a Christian church at all, these days. Throughout the Western world, churches are worshiping pagan goddesses, performing homosexual pseudo-marriages, chanting Buddhist prayers, and insisting that Christ is not the Savior: any old “spiritual” belief will get you into Heaven. Your beloved Anglican Church is a pioneer in apostasy, with most of the other denominations practically treading on their heels in their rush to debauch the Christian religion. Mere words hardly do it justice.
You were an arch-conservative, politically. Our politics today would make you sit down and cry.
Our electoral process has become more corrupt than the 1919 World Series. If Chick Gandil were alive today, he’d be the Commissioner of Baseball. Today a conservative is someone who proposes to ram the ship of state into the iceberg at a slightly slower speed than the liberal. How else does a governor who forcefully expedited homosexual “marriage” in his home state, and signed into law a state version of socialized medicine, get passed off as a conservative presidential candidate? Only by running against an out-and-out Marxist—and the Marxist won! The Marxist’s supporters, by the way, booed God’s name at their national convention. I daresay that would’ve been unthinkable in 1922.
But above all things you were a poet—which means that if you were alive today, you’d be out of a job. You could still write rap lyrics about beating up women and gunning down police officers, but where’s the fun in that? Poetry today is as extinct as the Plateosaurus.
Now I want you to sit down, because I’m going to tell you about our schools and I don’t want you to hurt yourself when you keel over.
Yes, our schools—the training ground for the future generation, the educators of children’s minds and morals—this is where our children go, these days, to be taught how to use butt plugs. You don’t know what a butt plug is? Suffice it to say that this form of sexual recreation would appall the most jaded Roman emperor. But it’s only one of many lessons in “sex education” with which we saturate our children’s minds.
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We don’t learn about you and your poetry in our schools anymore. Our students never heard of King David, the Holy Grail, or world geography. Believe me, you don’t really want to know what they do know about. If you weren’t already dead, it might move you to commit suicide. And you haven’t even heard an 11-year-old parrot back some of the jewels of wisdom he has acquired from his teachers, such as this one: “Communism really has a lot of good ideas.” Listen to ten minutes of this, and you’ll be ready to drink battery acid.
No, T.S., old boy—when you wrote “The Waste Land,” you didn’t have the foggiest idea of what a wasteland really is.
But don’t feel lonely. In a few years, someone will surely say the same of me.
© 2012 Lee Duigon - All Rights Reserved
Lee Duigon, a contributing editor with the Chalcedon Foundation, is a former newspaper reporter and editor, small businessman, teacher, and horror novelist. He has been married to his wife, Patricia, for 34 years. See his new fantasy/adventure novels, Bell Mountain and The Cellar Beneath the Cellar, available on www.amazon.com