Posted by: HAT | January 26, 2010

Against Sacrifice

Dulce et decorum

The politics of progress, “the future,” is always a politics of sacrifice. It is a politics of a specific kind of sacrifice. It’s the politics of the sacrifice of concrete actualities — of people with names and faces — to the abstract ideal.

This is not the question of “the individual” and “the collective.” It is the mystery — a mystery, because how can it be such a mystery — of the obscurity of the neighbor.

“The poor” is an abstraction. My neighbor, who asks me for a ride to the grocery store or Burger King, is not. She has a face and a name, and she recognizes mine.

Will those of us who observe the Friday before Easter ever get this if we keep calling that Friday “Good”?

(Who named it that, anyway?)


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