Sunday, March 29, 2015

streams of thought.... march 29th, 2015

Thoughts on this Sunday. 

They say that “silence is golden”. 

We are also told “never say never”.

We are told that we are limited by the size of our dreams; therefore, dream huge colorful dreams.

I say that sometimes silence is not golden at all. That there are times when we have to express meaningful and thoughtful words that may challenge the emotive balance of another person or group of individuals.  I think there are times that saying “never” is exactly what needs to be said.  I believe that there are some actions, policies, and thoughts that need to be challenged.  However, yes, I would agree that we are limited by the dreams that we hold or believe inside.

Recently, we have seen events that have rippled through the internet in a matter of seconds.  With these events, we have been openly questioned as to what we believe and who do we protect as a society.  This was not the first time, nor will it be the last, that “man” has been presented with the opportunity to defend and speak out for the well-being of another. In the 1930’s, Germany had a community of evil chose one segment of society at a time.  They chose them not to exalt but to exterminate.  In the 1800’s, America had a community of evil that held societal and political power late into the 60’s and 70’s (some would even say to this day) that declared that race was a determining factor of not just how to live but whether or not you lived. In the other countries, such as India, Afghanistan, and Iran, a person’s sexual identity controls their destiny of safety and progression in life even to this day. 

It is not a matter of whether we openly accept a person for how they naturally live out their lives.  Honestly, it comes down to whether or not we respect and value the freedom to choose to live an authentic life.  Sadly, in the 50’s some people would have defended the denial of a Negro eating at the counter in a Woolworth’s store.  Thankfully, there were some that stood up and said that this denial was not just a denial of one group of people but the denial of all.

Today some have said it is within the legal right of a company or a business owner to not serve a gay or lesbian person.  I have a question.  Which side would you have stood with in Germany during the 30’s?  Would you have said that society should not protect the rights of a gypsy or a minority, or a mentally handicapped person or a gay or a Jew?

Discrimination is discrimination no matter the time or the place or the person. We all have to ask ourselves these questions: what are we afraid of? Are we afraid of the color of a person’s skin?  Are we afraid of the clothes that a person may wear? Are we afraid of not the sexual choice of another person but the fact that they are attracted to the same sexual person? Are we afraid of someone that thinks differently than we do? Are we afraid of someone that worships differently than we do? Are we afraid or just uncomfortable?

Many of those that have spoken out in favor of a recent legal decision, which will lead to discrimination, have used their faith beliefs as an argument against the rights of another person. Some are using their beliefs as a mallet beating down the rights of another person.  In that person’s defense, they say that they have rights too and yes they do; however, do those rights supersede the rights of another person?  To be honest, those that oppose just want conformity. They want a society that adheres to their standards of “choice”… oddly enough it sounds like another modern religious group that we find appalling in actions as well.

Now, before someone says that this in defense of one demographic group, these thoughts presented here are the same for the Arab, the Jew, the mentally handicapped, the rich, the poor, the Protestant, the Catholic, the Muslim, the gay, and the straight.  This belief of defending the rights of others is for the young and the old, male or female, the Hispanic and the Asian, or for anyone who does not feel like they are a part of any societal community.

So, I ask myself this as much as I am asking you… Do my actions promote discrimination? Am I promoting dividedness in my silence? Do my actions defend the rights of others? Am I living life based on my interpretation or is it based on the loving actions of Christ? Just as He welcomed others, am I doing the same?    


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