What is civilization? It is expectation. It is shared protocol. It isn’t so much about what thing is done but how one does that thing. The savage shows up at the local Wal-Mart in pajamas. The civilized man shows up dressed within the socially acceptable norms.
Aha! But what if pajamas are within the social norms? Then you’re in a civilization of savages. See, we have this notion that civilization is related to what we think of as civilized, but that is a lie. The cannibals of the darkest jungle are a civilization. But they are not civilized.
These are different concepts. Most all of us come from some civilization, but to be considered civilized, you must abide by the protocols of the civilization you are currently inhabiting.
And make no mistake. All civilizations are not equal. Equality does not exist on this earth. For example, you may admire the pygmies of New Guinea, but they haven’t launched a space program, have they? They have produced no great works of art, have they? Can you name their great composers?
But am I not judging them by the standards of my own civilization? Indeed, I am. Because I happen to very much prefer my own civilization. To paraphrase Jules his own bad self… Humans may taste like bacon and pork chops, but I would never know because I would never eat the filthy… and so it goes. No doubt the savages of the islands would think me an idiot for the refusal.
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