Tuesday, October 3, 2017

Region of disdain

  Possibly the phenomenon of a cold shoulder
  is not so indebted to disdain as has been
  thought, at least among exhibitors in our
  midst. Sometimes, a notable projection of
  warmth can be deduced; but if this were a
  property of disdain, we should have no use
  for the word, disgust, which many moralists
  count among the catalogue of sin. A morbid
  curiosity, on the other hand, can manifest
  warmth, almost as commonly as wrath. These
  strenuous etymological exercises may strike
  one as spectacularly incongruous when iden-
  tifying our responses to political figures,
  habitually indifferent to meaning in every
  hazardous dimension and facet of its exis-
  tence - but inevitably are thrust upon us,
  of enduring them. Needless to say, a very
  cold winter is expected for them now, in
  the gruesome shadow of the most elevated
  of them all. Prominence is one thing, they
  seem to reason; scrutiny, entirely another.

  It diminishes their capacity for happiness;
  it hauls them, ineluctably, into the world.
  To credit the American President, however,
  as a disproportionate contributor to this
  likelihood, would be only to capitulate to
  his standard of reference - such as it is.

Ferdinando Scianna
Ivory Coast

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