11 January 2011

life in the cross hairs

Since Sunday morning when I first became aware of the shootings in Tuscan I have, like a number of Americans, tried to separate emotion from evidence in the situation. And it seems as quickly as I am willing to concede that Laughner was a disturbed individual regardless of gun laws and regardless of the intensity of political debate, those whom I am making concessions for make outrageous remarks that make me feel like I want to throw up.

I think most telling of the environment in which we are now raising the next generation of Americans, isn't necessarily the shootings but it is how those who are calling for more civil dialogue are the ones being villainized.

I debated in my own mind if I should post anything about the shootings because I didn't want to participate in the flurry, or in an uncivil debate, but then I realized that either I am the minority or part of a silent majority that must to speak up about this issue.

Now, I am not of the belief that Laughner's actions are wholly the responsibility of loose gun laws or violence-laced dialogue by radio show hosts or politicians......but I do believe two things are very clear 1) this man should by no means have had a gun legally-I don't know how anyone could argue the contrary and 2) weak-minded and disturbed people would be prone to personalize rhetorical attacks and lash out at who they feel are threatening them.

I think its just "swell" that our congressmen are saying how we need to tone down the rhetoric. But are they willing to tell Limbaugh and Beck to shut up? NO WAY....their audiences are their constituents, and hosts take great pride in knowing that they can sway elections with their words. I am a firm believer in the freedom of speech, but there is no longer any personal responsibility or self-control when it comes to what is dripping out of the mouths of these people. Rush's statements yesterday literally made me sick to my stomach.....he was engendering fear in his audience by saying that because people like Sheriff Dupnik, who some right-wingers are calling to resign, say that the Nation needs to do "soul searching" in our discourse, is a step toward outlawing statements that challenge Democratic positions. I said two days ago, when the question was raised if this would calm the political climate, that I thought in fact it would only turn up the heat.....and I think I'm being proven right.

While I believe that we should all act with ethics, I want to challenge fellow Christians with these next statements. I know many of you listen to these guys-like Limbaugh and Beck. I want you to listen with new ears; I challenge you to make some spiritual discernment if what you are feeding your spirit is for building up, or tearing down.....is it Christ-like? I'm not saying that everything these guys stand for is wrong, but you also need to judge what that is doing to your spiritual life, and how is it contributing to how you interact with or view others. If you are somehow equating what is being said with some form of spiritual superiority-it's time you understand these guys are feeding off of you....and making a heck of a lot of money doing so. They are not somehow saviours of our democracy-they are out to make a buck off of the most rage-inspired speech they can come up with. How on earth does that align with Christ's teachings? And I think that it is important to note here that I once was an avid Rush listener.....but I matured both intellectually and spiritually. The only "cross hairs" we should be viewing people through is the cross.

I fear for the Nation that we are becoming. I know that while I served my community I was on the receiving end of a lot of personal attacks and conspirorist dialogue....even being called a fascist myself because I thought we should have minimal housing standards like electricity and working plumbing. As a Nation are we truly this ignorant, that we cannot see what is happening? If so, God help our children because bedlam surely follows.

1 comment:

Andy S. said...

I agree with you wholeheartedly. The question I have is that if one is for no fault of anybody's gets a legal gun permit (meaning the person was sane at the time and no underhandedness took place), is it possible that there should be a mechanism in place where the contrary could ever be prove (he was after all thrown out of school for wierd behaviour) unstable behavior that it would cause a revocation of that permit.

Not that this would change the facts, because determined people always find a way--legal or otherwise.

As far as the talking heads are conserned--well I opt out from plugging in. I realize this is irresponsible, but at the end of the day of nothing can change--then why bother it. As long as people as a group patronise people like Rush and get a high from it, rather than thinking sensibly, there isn't a whole lot that can be done.

I think better effort could be made trying to build a better culture for us and our children to grow up in (not that I actually have any).

If people would at first stand for the christian values that supposedly > 60% of Americans profess--we wouldn't be talking about this now...

my $0.02.