…[T]he line dividing good and evil cuts through the heart of every human being.” Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn
A Word of Hope
Devotees of Star Trek will be familiar with the cloaking device. Of Romulan origin, “this technology can generate an energy screen to render a target object—usually a spacecraft—relatively invisible to sensors” (Star Trek online data base). The shield hides insidious intent—usually to weaken or destroy an enemy.
Recently, politicians across the country have used the façade of virtue as cloaking devices for bills and laws which deprive others of their rights. Consider Georgia Governor Brian Kemp’s camouflaging massive voter suppression– particularly disenfranchising people of color– under the guise of securing the vote from fraud. (We should remember that Georgia’s 2020 presidential vote was recounted not once, but three times and pronounced valid.) As well, the bill “criminalizes” offering food and drink to voters who sometimes have to stand in line for hours. Iconic was the image of Kemp’s signing the bill behind closed doors, flanked by 6 white men, three on each side, with a picture of a plantation on the wall behind them. Outside, African American legislator Park Cannon who knocked on the door to witness the signing—was hauled off to jail by security officers and charged with felony obstruction.
Texas has its own version of the virtue cloaking shield with a proposed bill that would require K-12 students at traditional public and charter schools to participate in interscholastic sports based on their “biologic sex.” Essentially, the action would bar transgender girls and women from participating in women’s sports—arguing that it would create unfairness for women. Organizations supporting such bills adopt virtue labeling in their names: Save Women’s Sports and the Alliance Defending Freedom.
Fortunately, justice seekers everywhere are dismantling these cloaking devices with protest and litigation.
As Solzhenitsyn implies, though, we can all throw up cloaking devices to try to secure our own purposes—power, control, love and much more. Interestingly, the choice to use cloaking shields usually “prohibits simultaneous use of other major systems such as weaponry, shields or warm drive because of the immense power drain.” Living an inauthentic life surely drains one’s energy as well. Pursuing a more authentic life requires us to be genuine and real, more vulnerable and accountable, aligned inside and out with our principles. Doing so means less “drag on the system” than perpetuating and maintaining cloaking devices under the guise of good.
Authentic One, direct us to your true purposes, that we may live into the peace and freedom of authenticity. Amen.
Dr. Pat Saxon