I believe our responsibility lies in recog¬ nizing the commonality among people, not revving up our sense of evil.
[In such a world] there is no God, there is no truth, the universe is chaotic, all is rel¬ ative, "the world as text," a text any post-modernist is willing to compose.His answer— "Because there was a job to be done"—is sufficient "substance" for any of us. They have shattered the conventional distinc¬ tion between good and evil; they have "deconstructed" the wisdom of the ages and have found it largely unwise and totally unreliable for the current age.Have beliefs in the infallibility of God— or country—or race—proven any better? We now live (happily and freely, one sup- LETTERS TO THE EDITOR 3 poses) unencumbered by any "criterion of wrongness," as Richard Rorty tells us, and-in the figurative language of Professor Delbanco-we find that "there is no longer any scripture to which the missionary may turn when he wants to bring light to the savage." The situation is dire, but we can take heart, for there are still some formidable minds arrayed against the delusions of the postmodernists.I'm sure American Indi¬ ans could have done simply with a lot more humane "pose." Of course compara¬ ble situations have been repeated through¬ out all of history. Eliot was speaking of "the intrusion of the diabolic into modern literature" at the University of Virginia, which, ironi¬ cally (in the benign sense of that word), is now the campus home of Professor Richard Rorty, one of the country's most vocal postmodernists.Ask anyone involved in one of the ethnic/religious "cleansings" of the Editor our own century. Rieux is asked why he has kept plugging along throughout the disaster. Final exam "Have Americans lost their sense of evil? The mere mention of Original Sin and the struggle to rise above our wounded nature will, no doubt, provoke gales of derisive laughter among the postmod¬ ernists or the ironists or the cultural rel- ativists-call them what you will.