“These ruthless bigots”

There is one view very common among the liberal-minded which is exceedingly fatiguing to the clear-headed. It is symbolised in the sort of man who says, “These ruthless bigots will refuse to bury me in consecrated ground, because I have always refused to be baptised.” A clear-headed person can easily conceive his point of view, in so far as he happens to think that baptism does not matter. But the clear-headed will be completely puzzled when they ask themselves why, if he thinks that baptism does not matter, he should think that burial does matter. If it is in no way imprudent for a man to keep himself from a consecrated font, how can it be inhuman for other people to keep him from a consecrated field? It is surely much nearer to mere superstition to attach importance to what is done to a dead body than to a live baby. I can understand a man thinking both superstitious. or both sacred; but I cannot see why he should grumble that other people do not give him as sanctities what he regards as superstitions. He is merely complaining of being treated as what he declares himself to be. It is as if a man were to say, “My persecutors still refuse to make me king, out of mere malice because I am a strict republican.” Or it is as if he said, “These heartless brutes are so prejudiced against a teetotaler, that they won’t even give him a glass of brandy.”

The Superstition of Divorce (1920).

Published in: on February 20, 2008 at 1:22 pm  Leave a Comment  

The URI to TrackBack this entry is: https://chesterton.wordpress.com/2008/02/20/these-ruthless-bigots/trackback/

RSS feed for comments on this post.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: