She didn't write the book, but here are a couple of opening grafs of her column on New Year's Day about how goldarn lucky we are to have the thing called hope:
We Americans are fortunate that hope is built into the architecture of the cultural world we inhabit. It's an element of the precious patrimony we received from Western Europe -- the happy marriage of Athens and Jerusalem.We believe that Oriental cultures do not value human life that way we do, and we believe that human kind is on a sure path to history's conclusion! Why, Francis Fukuyama said we've already done it! Western civilization -- and Christianity, of course -- are already the winners! I guess he had to take it back, but he definitely is on to something! We're on the path to the world's conclusion, too, I guess. It just depends on how much stock you put in the Book of Revelation!
As inheritors of the Western cultural tradition, we Americans do not believe that the future is foreordained, or that human beings are the helpless playthings of the gods. We do not conceive of history as a giant wheel, condemning us to endlessly repeat the past. We have a different idea: that hope -- and human resolve, ingenuity, self-discipline and self-sacrifice -- can broaden and enrich our world, improving our lives and those of our children.
As the spawn of a European man (probably God) and a middle eastern woman (Mary), we really are lucky (and to repeat, just a little):
As inheritors of the Western cultural tradition, we Americans do not believe that the future is foreordained, or that human beings are the helpless playthings of the gods. We do not conceive of history as a giant wheel, condemning us to endlessly repeat the past.Yes, we have only One True God to tell us the score; just ask a Calvinist, or even your garden-variety fundie. And we're not condemned to repeat our history; we're just condemned to live the lives that ancient busybodys wrote for us, so it just seems that way.
I've picked out the best stuff in the column for you to read, boys and girls. The rest descends into even greater incoherence and cultural viciousness. I can hardly wait for Easter.