The Danger in Becoming Birds of a Feather

The Danger in Becoming Birds of a Feather

Our reality is a personal concept—a construct--we distort and wrap around ourselves like a blanket on a cold evening, facts become warped and evidence is viewed with personal bias, bent and misshapen or discarded altogether, partisanship becomes the preferred method of camaraderie—we become the birds of a feather that flock together with those that agree with us, that support our private distortion of reality, encourage our personal mores and values, and allow us to maintain our status quo.  We do this because we desire safety for ourselves, those we love, and for our imaginary, invented world—We do this even when we disagree with something but concur by default with our silence, because it’s easier to agree with something and harmonize rather than to speak up and fall out of favor, to be alone, to find ourselves put at risk.  We don’t want our blankets ripped away.

I doubt seriously that people, or the societies in which we dwell could long stand the truth being told.  We would melt into quivering, terrified wrecks.  We would cry ourselves back to sleep.  We fear the truth.  It threatens us.  It strips us naked.  Still, the truth is the only thing that will save us from ourselves, from our societies, and from our ultimate ruin.  The road to dystopia is paved in self-indulgence and in quiet consent.         

I believe in the divinity of humankind, I believe in the beauty and perfectibility of us as beings, there is however this: we as a people have fallen far from the tree and are following dark voices into darker places.  We need to face the truth, and the lies, inward and outward, and address them.  They beg our attention.  The truth is dangerous to hear and can be personally disastrous, so we fancy a well-brought-up lie instead, to a fault.  That is perilous, not just for ourselves, but for our descendants as well.  We want our individual pocket-sized world left sheltered and secure, our feelings left nicely intact, our minds handily shielding us from our deepest fears; when in fact, it is unerringly fear—and lies--that we should be facing, and challenging.  To do anything else is to invite disaster.  

Donald Dean Mace

Donald Dean Mace is an artist, poet, and freelance writer living and working quietly in Yuma, Arizona. He has been published by Ariel Chart, the Yuma Daily Sun, the Arizona Western College Literary Magazine, his poetry was featured in a public service broadcast, and he was a guest on Mark Antony’s podcast, Strength to be Human. 

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