I think I see your point.
Of course you do, you’re not an idiot. But what about my question?
What are we to make of that?
I don’t know.
You are a party. You’re not supposed to be, but that’s how you act. In all but name that is how you conduct yourselves. That does bring up the question-
Is that our mistake or is it just part of politics?
And you are beginning to understand. The answer, of course, is right in front of your nose. We’ve talked about it extensively. Have you forgotten, the old go-to of your species?
Us and Them.
Precisely. And where else could that philosophy thrive so prolifically as in the realm of politics? It’s written into the very rules of the game. And it is a game, boy. There are winners and losers and the maturity level of those playing often doesn’t rise much past that of children.
Some would still say that we could be useful there. That we ought to try.
Some would. But you still fail to see the danger. The kind of message you are sending. The damage you are doing just by playing the game.
What kind of damage?
I see I must give everything to you. Try and follow.
Let’s suppose that there is a piece of legislation. The particulars don’t matter, they rarely do. This piece of legislation happens to coincide with your philosophy, happens to follow your particular morality, and having it passed would mean that the laws of your land would greater reflect your truth. What would you do?
I would try to get it passed.
I believe in the truth.
And the truth is for the betterment of society, yes?
It is in each individual person’s best interests.
So, naturally it would be in the country’s best interest, yes?
So, let’s say you did try to get it passed. Not just you but all of your kind. Banded together, you use your not inconsiderable influence to lobby and march and speak out for this legislation. Faithful pundits taut the goodness of the law. Preachers encourage their congregations to exercise their right to vote in order to see this good law passed. All the while, you call this a good thing. At last, your kind exercising their rights. A chance to be good men and good citizens.
And, let’s say, you succeed. The law is passed. However, your public efforts to see this through have so offended those not in favor of this law that your reputation is quite ruined in their sight. So, while on the one hand you have successfully passed a rather small piece of legislation you have so ruined your “good” name as to make it difficult to pass another and certainly to make the world deaf to what you have to say on any other matter.
Let me ask you. Does that seem like a good idea? Does it seem worth the cost? Laws come and go, but your message, your ultimate truth, would you sacrifice that for this, for politics?
We shouldn’t. But I can see how we might.
Might? My dear boy, who said we were speaking hypothetically?