What J.R.R. Tolkien can teach us about life after Trump

first_imgThe sooner we begin, the sooner we may say along with Sam’s old Gaffer, “All’s well that ends better!”   McConnell may be right—indeed, he may continue to do damage even as we work to correct it—but we must undertake it just the same. And Tolkien provides us with insight into the way that work must be accomplished: with determination, but also with compassion. Frodo, as leader of the free hobbits, forbids violence against his fellow hobbits “even if they have gone over to the other side. Really gone over, I mean, not just obeying … because they are frightened.” He cautions that “it is useless to meet revenge with revenge: It will heal nothing.” Compare this to Joe Biden: “We must stop treating our opponents as our enemy. We are not enemies. We are Americans.”  Like Trump’s MAGA minions, Saruman’s thugs—hobbit, half orc, and human alike—demand respect but deserve none. What they do deserve, Frodo knows, is the chance to change—with consequences if they choose not to. “Do not kill him even now,” he instructs Sam after the disgraced Wizard has just attempted to stab him with a dagger.  “He was great once, of a noble kind … He is fallen and his cure is beyond us, but I would still spare him, in the hope that he may find it.” But Saruman’s pride, like Trump’s, prevents conversion. “All my hopes are ruined,” he tells Galadriel in an earlier chapter, “but I would not share yours.” And Frodo has no compunctions about driving him and his henchmen out of town—as we must have none about driving out the recalcitrant Trump and his goons if they refuse to go in peace.  When first apprised of Sauron’s fall and the success of the Quest, Sam wonders, “Is everything sad going to come untrue?” In “The Scouring of the Shire,” Tolkien has Sam provide his own answer: “I shan’t call it the end,” he says, “till we’ve cleared up the mess. And that’ll take a lot of time and work.” That work is now our work. To quote Joe Biden, “The work of making this vision real is the task of our time.”  – Advertisement – Nor have we rid ourselves of the scourge of Trumpism. On the contrary, Trumpists still occupy the top positions in government and have not acceded to the lawful transfer of power. High-level elected officials remain complicit. Trump loyalists have been installed in our judiciary and our career civil service. Armed militias threaten violence. And millions of our fellow citizens have thrown their lot in with the corrupt and immoral Trump regime.  Tolkien understood that the aftermath of evil is not sudden good, but rather a long, hard, unglamorous slog towards normalcy and decency. And he understood that even this menial work would face resistance from the spiteful vanquished. “I have already done much that you will find it hard to mend or undo,” smirks Sharkey/Saruman to Frodo upon realizing he is defeated. Compare this to Mitch McConnell upon the confirmation of Amy Coney Barrett to the Supreme Court: “A lot of what we’ve done over the last four years will be undone sooner or later by the next election. They won’t be able to do much about this for a long time to come.”    – Advertisement –center_img – Advertisement –last_img read more

J-D to meet ESM for girls lacrosse sectional Class C title

first_img Tags: ESMgirls lacrosseJ-D It never got closer again, Andrus finishing with a career-best six goals as Rileigh White had four assists to go with her pair of tallies. Kelly Thomas had a three-goal hat trick to match Barton as Biel scored twice. Sophia Orlando and Julia Caruana had one goal apiece and Anna James finished with nine saves.All of this followed the first semifinal between top seed J-D and no. 4 seed Cortland, which ended 19-7 in the Red Rams’ favor, though the final did not reflect some early nerves.Having lost twice to J-D in the regular season by margins of 18-10 and 17-9, the Purple Tigers hung right with the Rams throughout the early stages, even using goals by Morgan Tabel and Grace Call to pull even 4-4 late in the first half.Had it stayed this way until halftime, Cortland may have made J-D worry even more – but in the last 2:06, Ana Dieroff scored and Lindsay MacLachlan hit on her third goal.Not only did it put the Rams in front 6-4, it foreshadowed a blitz early in the second half where Emliy Bobrek, Arysa Lux and Kailey McKenna all scored, and after Cortland cut the margin to 9-5, J-D outscored them 10-2 the rest of the way.MacLachlan earned 11 points from her five goals and six assists. Dieroff scored four times, with Lily Loewenguth getting three goals as Riley LaTray had two goals and one assist. Ava Brazie and Jordan Archer also had goals.So it’s J-D against ESM next Tuesday at 5:30 at SUNY-Cortland, battling for the sectional Class C championship.Share this:FacebookTwitterLinkedInRedditComment on this Story Claiming a Section III Class C championship was not new for the Jamesville-DeWitt girls lacrosse team, but having to beat its neighbors from East Syracuse Minoa to get that prize was different.In its first season in the Class C ranks, the Spartans worked its way to last Tuesday night’s title game, the direct result of an inspired post-season effort capped by its 18-12 victory over Fulton in the May 23 semifinals at CBA’s Alibrandi Stadium.ESM have to get through a Fulton side that had reached the sectional finals each of the previous two years, though it had played quite well against them in two high-scoring regular-season meetings that the sides split.center_img Other than allowing the first goal, the Spartans never trailed, and once Katherine Andrus converted on a dazzling end-to-end effort to put her side in front 3-2, the Red Raiders would spend the rest of the game chasing ESM.Any time Fulton tried to catch up, the Spartans countered, whether it was Julianna Barton’s goal after the Red Raiders cut the margin to 6-5 or Andrus finding the net 27 seconds before halftime, stretching the margin to 9-6.A weather delay for lightning in the area prolonged halftime for half an hour, but once the game resumed, the back-and-forth continued until Andrus, Barton and Emma Biel hit on consecutive goals, extending ESM’s lead to 13-8 early in the second half.last_img read more