In his "A Reader Writes" position piece published recently, erudite Carlos Acuña makes a case for institutional points of view quashing those of the individual — and defends the individual with the bumper sticker cliché, "your karma ran over his dogma."
Mr. Acuña references Jacob Bronowoski's video, "The Ascent of Man," and its correct focus upon human evolution requiring objective inquiry of institutions. Left out of the column was Bronowski's underpinning of human success to the evolution of the opposable thumb — allowing tools to be held in the hand — and the Eastern European cultivation of field crops, specifically wheat, as the starting point for western, i.e., Caucasian civilization. And with the wheat came the "have-nots": those on horses, marauding and pillaging the "haves." The horse revolutionized warfare; wheat was the prize.
Cited by Mr. Acuña was "A Clockwork Orange," the futuristic tale of total dedication to the self and personal gratification no matter what the cost to society's individuals collectively making institutions. The main protagonist was a cunning narcissist, murderer and rapist. When asked to study Scripture, he fantasized himself — not as contrite, but — as the cruel Roman flogging a perfectly innocent messenger of good news and doer of good works through love and self sacrifice.