Restore Our American Republic

Crosspoints: A Novel of Choice

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   The inability to grasp and defend the values underlying the individual rights foundation of the U.S. has been the Achilles heel of the Republican Party leadership for over 100 years. Time and again they have failed to understand that political rights require a moral foundation so that individuals can live in an unfettered manner. Because of this they are unable to challenge the idea that one person’s need is a valid reason to force another to provide for that need. Among numerous other policy defeats, this is why they lost the battle over Obamacare. They were unable to challenge Obamacare’s moral underpinnings. To do that would have required them to say:

“There is no right to healthcare. To make healthcare a right would necessitate forcing some people to pay for other people’s health care. That is immoral because need does not constitute a right.”

This weakness existed in the days of Teddy Roosevelt in the early 20th century when he launched the Progressive movement, and it is there today paralyzing Conservative leaders in their efforts to challenge the newest Progressive media sensation of 2019, Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez. Since her election in 2018 Ocasio-Cortez has made many verbal gaffes, but continues to push an openly socialist platform and the destruction of industrial civilization via the Green New Deal. The key to her continuing influence even amid her many gaffes came to light with her comment during an interview with Anderson Cooper of 60 Minutes:

“If people want to really blow up one figure here or one word there, I would argue that they’re missing the forest for the trees. I think that there’s a lot of people more concerned about being precisely, factually, and semantically correct than about being morally right.” (emphasis added)

This is why no matter how absurdly impractical Ocasio-Cortez’s and other leading Progressives proposals are, they are still seen as representing moral ideals  to strive for, and why even though the Green New Deal was recently defeated in the Senate, it will be back in one form or another. Subjugating the rights or income of the individual to the “greater good” or the “General Welfare” or “Mother Earth” are sentiments the Republican leadership cannot challenge because they themselves also believe in them. This continually undercuts their effectiveness to initiate pro-liberty policies. Because of the Republican leaders inability to challenge her moral outlook of self-sacrifice for “society” or “Mother Earth” they are left trying to argue against them in economic terms or proposing watered-down versions of Progressive-initiated proposals. These losing tactics have led to Conservatives continuing to cede the high moral ground and thus their inability to legislate meaningful reforms to any welfare state programs currently operating.

(For details on the lack of a proper philosophic foundation to support Conservatism see: “The Decline and Fall of American Conservatism,” by C. Bradley Thompson, 2006, The Objective Standard.)

Thankfully, there are pro-liberty cultural critics such as Alexandra York who fully understand this weakness. York has been defending the moral principles needed to support the individual rights foundation in a free society as a Newsmax columnist in addition to her work as Founder and President of American Renaissance for the 21st Century (www.art-21.org). She has also infused her works of fiction with the moral values needed in a free society. She has published three novels to date: ADAMAS, The Innocent, and Crosspoints: A Novel of Choice.

To defend liberty and Western civilization it is imperative that “we the people” understand and defend our fundamental values. And no value is more fundamental than that of free will. Contrary to what is being taught on most college campuses today, we are more than members of a specific race, gender, or group that determines our identity. We have free will and the ability to choose our own values and determine our own destiny. In Crosspoints, York presents a spirited defense of free will that is both timely, timeless, and a wonderfully soul-nourishing read. If you like the review of Crosspoints that follows, then I urge you to read that work and any others of hers that you can get your hands on. You will not be disappointed. (For my review of her novel ADAMAS please go here, and for my review of The Innocent please see the customer review: “Beautiful Innocence vs. Mafia Ugliness,” here.

Mike Gemmell
Founder and President, Restore Our American Republic, LLC

 

 


Crosspoints: A Novel of Choice

Reviewed by Mike Gemmell

   I read and enjoyed this gripping novel several years ago, so why did I recently re-read it? Alexandra York’s evocative story and compelling characters had stayed vivid in my memory, but I felt a desire to go back and re-visit it. Now that I have finished it for the second time, I know why: With the signs of cultural deterioration all around us in the U.S. and beyond our shores, it can be difficult to avoid the notion that Western culture is in inevitable decline and that we as individuals are powerless to do anything about it. At those moments when we feel these types of despairing thoughts creeping into our minds, we need to search out and find outstanding and uplifting works of art that dramatize the unique achievements and possibilities that Western civilization represents, works that contain ideas and inspirational characters such as those in York’s novel, CROSSPOINTS: A Novel of Choice. This remarkable author endeavors, and in my opinion brilliantly succeeds, in dramatizing one of the foundational ideas of Western civilization: the defense of the belief that we as individuals have free will and must exercise it if we are to live lives with meaning and purpose even when immersed in a culture that dismisses or denigrates this belief. A reverence toward this fundamental aspect of our nature is dramatized in York’s tale by using the backdrop of today’s 21st century arts culture. Each of the principal characters faces personal and/or professional challenges where they must choose to stand by their existing values (right or wrong), pursue new values, or in some cases, re-evaluate the entire direction of their lives. These decision intersections, or “crosspoints” as one of the characters refers to them, require clear-eyed honesty and courageous integrity on the part of the characters for their paths to be successfully traversed. The greater the importance of the value involved, the greater the effort and courage needed to gain, keep, or reject it. Some characters succeed while others fail, but the pursuit of each character’s values and overall destiny lies within his or her grasp.

This work can be savored on several different levels. At the most literal level, the plot involves fascinating characters in the fields of archaeology and art that grapple with problems that many of us can relate to such as: 1) a burned out American sculptor trying to win the love of a woman who is diametrically opposed to his world-weary cynicism and passionately loves her own work, and (2) a Greek-American woman archaeologist who is conflicted romantically with feelings toward both the burned-out artist and a former mentor who is secretly in love with her. In short, a volatile love triangle that must be resolved. The author uses her insights into human psychology and her skillful use of dialogue to choreograph the actions of her characters in dramatic and thought-provoking ways, and in so doing reveals the motivations leading to each character’s “crosspoint.” In following the unfolding series of events, the reader is privy to an intriguing story with characters to really care about.

For readers seeking a deeper, life-enriching literary experience, there are even greater treasures to be mined from this work. Treasures that can be mined by contemplating questions raised by the author such as: (1) How does one survive emotionally and spiritually in a world where one is the creative source for outstanding works of art but whose achievement is not properly appreciated?, and (2) Why would one betray one’s talent for the sake of fame and money if forsaking that talent causes that person to morally self destruct?, and (3) Can a person who has turned away from their youthful ideals invest the time and energy to find their way back to their original vision of what is possible in their life? These and other pressing questions are presented with great skill by the author in ways that convey the premise that we as individuals–for better or worse–are the prime movers in our lives and are responsible for our own individual destinies.

As a final bit of literary treasure, the author gives her view on what is an individual’s most meaningful and life-affirming pursuit: the activity of creative work. In this reader’s view, the author is not restricting creative efforts to works of art. I believe she also holds it to be possible in other realms such as science, business, technology, etc., in short, to all types of human endeavors.

And so to readers who are looking for intellectual, emotional, romantic, and spiritual sustenance, as well as insights concerning why our culture has declined and what can be done to arrest and perhaps even reverse that decline–or at least survive it and revel in individual professional achievement and personal happiness–I urge you to read this book.

Alexandra York is an author and founding president of the American Renaissance for the Twenty-first Century (ART) a New-York-City-based nonprofit educational arts and culture foundation (www.art-21.org). She has written for many publications, including “Reader’s Digest” and The New York Times. Her latest book is “Adamas.” For more on Alexandra York, Go Here Now.

 

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