The title for this series of posts (read Part I here) was taken from Bill Fay’s song “Pictures of Adolf Again”:
In the papers, on the TV screens Pictures of Adolf again As sure as I sit here there will appear Pictures of Adolf again You're wrong, you're wrong Throw down your cards You're wrong, you're wrong If you say Adolf he won't come OK deny representation By leaders of all nations But have you got, have you really got Anyone to replace them? You're wrong, you're wrong Throw down your cards You're wrong, you're wrong OK then who's gonna come? Christ or Hitler? Christ or Vorster Christ or all the Caesars to come? That's the choice, that's the choice Sooner or later That's the choice, that's the choice You're gonna have to make
Fay is singing, on an album filled with second-coming hopes, about the perils of placing politicians in the role of heroes and even anti-heroes. He’s asking us to think about what happens when we idolize men whose chief aim is power, even when we believe they’ll use that power for good.
Fay’s choice is Christ, whose aim always is to eschew power, give everything away, love all equally. Our answer need not be so Christian, but I’m trying to ask similar questions about what happens when we perpetuate images of men we loathe, and we continually tell stories about how these men we’ve caught are predators. We likely don’t look closely enough at those predation dynamics—who is hunting whom, who is in the strong position and who is in the weak—because we may soon find that the evil one, the predator we both hate and fear, is us.