If we are going to be destroyed by a far-right government, let that government when it comes find us doing sensible and human things — praying, working, teaching, reading, listening to music, bathing the children, playing tennis, chatting to our friends over a pint and a game of darts — not huddled together like frightened sheep and thinking about politics. They might break our bodies (a microbe can do that) but they need not dominate our minds.
That’s got to be my strategy. Fury, denial, despair — none of these will help. Simply getting on with life just might.
1. He was originally writing about the threat of nuclear war, in a 1948 essay entitled “On Living in an Atomic Age”.
2. Yes, I know that Lewis was an old, unreconstructed Tory. The underlying point stands. (Also: the Conservative party back then was a very very different animal from the “Conservative” party of 2019, and I can’t persuade myself the Lewis would ever have voted for the Trump/Farage/Johnson manifestation of this party.)