Hl Mencken Essays - Essay Writing Help Onlin


hl mencken essays

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H.L. Mencken, Unforgivable and Unforgettable

All the while I have been forgetting the third of my reasons for remaining so faithful a citizen of the Federation, despite all the lascivious inducements from expatriates to follow them beyond hl mencken essays seas, and all the surly suggestions from patriots that I succumb.

It is the reason which grows out of my mediaeval but unashamed taste for the bizarre and indelicate, my congenital weakness for comedy of the grosser varieties. The United States, to my hl mencken essays, is incomparably the greatest show on earth. I cite an example: the worship of God. Everywhere else on earth it is carried on in a solemn and dispiriting manner; in England, of course, the bishops are obscene, but the average man seldom gets a fair chance to laugh at them and enjoy them.

Now come home. Every American town, however small, has one of its own: a holy clerk with so fine a talent for introducing the arts of jazz into the salvation of the hl mencken essays that his performance takes on all the gaudiness of a four-ring circus, hl mencken essays, and the bald announcement that he will raid Hell on such and such a night is enough to empty all the town blind-pigs and bordellos and pack his sanctuary to the doors.

These are the eminences of the American Sacred College. I delight in them. Their proceedings make me a happier American. Turn, hl mencken essays, now, to politics.

Consider, for example, a campaign for the Presidency. I defy any one to match it elsewhere on this earth. In other lands, at worst, there are at least intelligible issues, coherent ideas, salient personalities. Somebody says something, and somebody replies. But what did Harding say inand what did Cox reply? Who was Harding, anyhow, and who was Cox?

Here, having perfected democracy, we lift the whole combat to symbolism, to transcendentalism, hl mencken essays, to metaphysics, hl mencken essays.

Here we load a pair of palpably tin cannon with blank cartridges charged with talcum power, and so let fly. Here one may howl over the show without any uneasy reminder hl mencken essays it is serious, and that some one may be hurt, hl mencken essays.

I hold that this elevation of politics to the plane of undiluted comedy is peculiarly American, that no-where else on this disreputable ball has the art of the sham-battle been developed to such fineness Here politics is purged of all menace, all sinister quality, all genuine significance, and stuffed with such gorgeous humors, such inordinate farce that one comes to the end of a campaign with one's ribs loose, and ready for "King Lear," or a hanging, or a course of medical journals.

But feeling better for the laugh. Ridi si sapissaid Martial. Mirth is necessary to wisdom, to comfort, above all to happiness. Well, here is the land of mirth, as Germany is the land of metaphysics and France is the land of fornication.

Here the buffoonery never stops. What could be more delightful than the endless struggle of the Puritan to make the joy of the minority unlawful and impossible? The effort is itself a greater joy to one standing on the side-lines than any or all of the carnal joys it combats.

Always, when I contemplate an uplifter at his hopeless business, I recall a scene in an old- time burlesque show, witnessed for hire in my days as a dramatic critic. A chorus girl executed a fall upon the stage, and Rudolph Krausemeyer, the Swiss comdeian, rushed to her aid. As hl mencken essays stooped painfully to succor her, Irving Rabinovitz, the Zionist comedian, fetched him a fearful clout across the cofferdam with a slap-stick.

So the uplifter, the soul-saver, the Americanizer, striving to make the Republic fit for Y. He is the eternal American, ever moved by the best of intentions, ever running a la Krausemeyer to the rescue of virtue, and ever getting his pantaloons fanned by the Devil.

I am naturally sinful, and such spectacles caress me. If the slap-stick were a sash-weight, the show would be cruel, and I'd probably complain to the Polizei. As it is, I know that the uplifter is not really hurt, but simply shocked. The blow, in fact, does him good, for it helps get him into Heaven, hl mencken essays, as exegetes prove from Matthew v, Hereux serez-vous, lorsqu'on vous outragera, qu'on vous persecuteraand so on. As for me, it makes me a more contented man, and hence a better citizen.

One man prefers the Republic because it pays better wages than Bulgaria. Another because it has laws to keep him sober and his daughter chaste. Another because the Woolworth Building is higher than the cathedral at Chartres.

Another because, living here, he can read the New York Evening Journal. Another because there is a warrant out for him somewhere else. Me, I like it because it amuses me to my taste, hl mencken essays. I never get hl mencken essays of the show. It is worth every cent it costs.

That cost, it seems to me is very moderate. Taxes in the United States are not actually high. I figure, for example, that my private share of the expense of maintaining the Hon. Harding in the White House this year will work out to less than 80 cents. Finally, there is young Teddy Roosevelt, the naval expert. Teddy costs me, hl mencken essays, as I work it out, about 11 cents a year, or less than hl mencken essays cent a month.

More, he entertains me doubly for the money, first as a naval expert, and secondly as a walking attentat upon democracy, a devastating proof that there is nothing, after all, in that superstition. Where is your equal opportunity now?


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hl mencken essays


by H.L. Mencken () The effort is itself a greater joy to one standing on the side-lines than any or all of the carnal joys it combats. Always, when I contemplate an uplifter at his hopeless business, I recall a scene in an old- time burlesque show, witnessed for hire in my days as a dramatic critic. H.L. Mencken January 12, I Carlo Tresca is the proprietor of a small Italian paper in New York, by name Il Martello. He runs to Liberal ideas, and when the Fascisti came into power in his native country, and began Ku Kluxing their opponents, he denounced them in his paper, and called upon the Italians in America to repudiate them. Apr 20,  · The H. L. Mencken Show. Flipping eagerly among the essays, I was aware that Mencken, like the Boobus Americanus he lampooned, had never attended college himself. In fact he rarely left the confines of Baltimore, and spent much of his .