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Posts Tagged ‘Giffords’

I must say that the shooting of a member of Congress does not surprise me! I have often thought the atmosphere is ripe for such horrible violence. After all, where can the completely polarized, virtually radicalized current political situation lead to except to attempts to eradicate the enemy.

Almost no one in our country will condone the violence done today—almost no one! It’s the Few that make it dangerous for everyone else.

But do you think it is possible we in the U.S. could ever see things on TV like those reported from Pakistan this week, where the assassin of an outspoken governor is publically celebrated as a hero by those who would further radicalize Pakistan?

Our historians know of many times like this in U.S. history.   In my own times, I remember much too vividly the jokes being made that JFK better not come to Dallas—and then the jokes became reality!

The harsh divisions in the United States during the Sixties and Seventies over Viet Nam, Civil Rights, as well as the resulting political extremism represented by Watergate, these all led to an era of assassination. Let me just remind those of you who are younger what kind of atmosphere such political radicalization can create:

1963       –              President Kennedy assassinated

1965       –              Malcolm X, Civil Rights leader, assassinated

1968       –              Martin Luther King, Civil Rights leader, assassinated

1968       –              Robert F. Kennedy, presidential candidate, assassinated

1972       –              George Wallace, Governor of Alabama, paralyzed by assassin’s bullets

1975       –              President Gerald Ford , escaped assassination attempt

1975       –              President Gerald Ford, two weeks later, survived another assassination attempt

Four killed, but all afraid during those twelve years of bitter strife and division. And now our heated, uncompromising rhetoric suggests a similar atmosphere is on the horizon, unless we repent.

I’m also puzzled by the widely touted description of today’s post modern society holding one of its chief values to be tolerance! Those who know say that post moderns have moved from the dispassionate “whatever” to a passionate spirituality, but one that is for each person individually and probably of their own making. The individuality of it all means that it is not really considered right  to coerce—nor even try too aggressively to persuade—someone to accept your own values as theirs.

Religious radicals have seemed to be worse in very recent years. Radicalized Christians assassinate doctors who perform abortions, and radicalized Muslims carry explosives in their shoes and underwear with which to kill as many as possible,

I’m afraid this worst brand of religious passion is infecting the political process. By making every debate a moral debate about absolute truths, all are trying to claim God for their caucus.

And what do we say about a nation of people who make stars out of radio and TV personalities who promote themselves and their products by consciously radicalizing their political language and purposefully polarizing those who listen to them? Does this type of entertainment promote harmony, good will, peace on earth?

Christians must start with themselves and be full of grace and truth, speaking the truth in love. Christians should vote for those politicians who show a spirit of grace and truth. Christians must avoid H-rated radio and television, those who fill your ears with Hate and who call for anything but Grace and Truth.

My prayers are with Representative Giffords. My prayers are for our country and the world! My prayers are for you—and me!

 

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