Quote of the Day

I have talked about community as being a work of the imagination, and I hope I have made clear my belief that the more generous the scale at which imagination is exerted, the healthier and more humane the community will be.  There is a great deal of cynicism at present, among Americans, about the American population.  Someone told me recently that a commentator of some sort had said, “The United States is in a spiritual free-fall.”  When people make such remarks, such appalling judgments, they never include themselves, their friends, those with whom they agree.  They have drawn, as they say, a bright line between an “us” and a “them.”  Those on the other side of the line are assumed to be unworthy of respect or hearing, and are in fact to be regarded as a huge problem to the “us” who presume to judge “them.”  This tedious pattern has repeated itself endlessly through human history and is, as I have said, the end of community and the beginning of tribalism.

–Marilynne Robinson, When I Was a Child I Read Books, p. 30.