- Copied from another's post:
Joel Mark Solliday
Have you ever been called, "puritanical"? Count it as a
The myth of the joyless Puritan began during the era of 'Prohibition'
(1920-1933) with a crank journalist named H. L. Mencken. He called
Puritanism "the haunting fear that someone, somewhere, may be happy."
Mencken blamed the Puritans for the "Victorian America" he disliked
so. He editorialized during the Scopes Monkey Trial that on the
creationist side was "bigotry, ignorance, hatred, superstition, every
sort of blackness that the human mind is capable of." Far from being
an objective reporter (and far from the fact that he ended a sentence
with a preposition), his references to Dayton creationists as "local
primates..." "yokels... morons..." and "half-wits," betrayed a
vociferous and dehumanizing bias. And It caught on.
The REAL Puritans, however, carried to us a legacy of literacy, hard
work, religious freedom, adventure, education, democracy, creativity,
discipline, equality, and the rule of law. They were not the sole
custodians of these virtues and values nor did they practice them
perfectly, but they bore more than their fair share of the load in
carrying these treasures to us.
We need not wait for Thanksgiving to be thankful for the Puritans.
America's present and future would surely be more polluted without the
Puritans in our past.
If you oppose slavery, you stand side-by-side with your Puritan
forebears who opposed it long before it was popular to do so. They
also endured incredible daily hardship (beyond our imagination today)
without calling their God on the carpet. They knew a few things that
we have largely forgotten--that there are no blessings without
struggles, no rights without responsibilities, no trips to paradise
without a dry spell in the wilderness, no glory without sacrifice, no
succor without service, no position without preparation, and no
forgiveness without repentance. And for Jesus, they knew there was no
throne without a cross.
Puritans were more diverse than you've been told. Mencken wanted
his one-sided stereotype to pollute the truth about Puritans. Like
any group, they were a mixed bag of virtues and vices. But they
exerted a positive influence on American culture disproportionate to
their numbers and I am thankful!
- --- In Maury_and_Baty@yahoogroups.com, rlbaty@w... wrote:
> Puritanical Gratitudeof 'Prohibition'
> Joel Mark Solliday
> Have you ever been called, "puritanical"? Count it as a
> The myth of the joyless Puritan began during the era
> (1920-1933) with a crank journalist named H. L. Mencken. He calledRick:
> Puritanism "the haunting fear that someone, somewhere, may be
> ...Mencken wanted his one-sided stereotype to pollute the
> truth about Puritans...
If somebody calls you a Puritan they certainly don't mean it as a
And what collective America thinks of Puritanism is due more to its
remembrance of the Salem witch burnings and Nathaniel Hawthorne's
masterpiece, *The Scarlet Letter*, published in 1850, than anything
Mencken ever wrote.
But as far as that goes, what is a "crank journalist," anyway? "One-
sided" on the other side?
YECs have some "haunting fears" of their own: more fossils will be
found, bigger and better telescopes will be built, their children
will learn to think for themselves...
Worldwide Church of Latitudinarianism