Archive for April, 2010

Racism or Crying Wolf?

Posted by Doug White under Political

When I was either in Kindergarten or 1st grade I was continually picked on by another young boy – who happened to be black.  In my young mind, I was afraid to fight back because I thought that black people were physically stronger.  One day I asked my Dad if that was true – and he told me that it wasn’t.  The next day when the boy picked on me again, I stood up to him and he backed down.

I learned a couple lessons that day.  One, which I had to relearn over the years – was that bullies ALWAYS back down when you stand up to them.  The other lesson was that the color of your skin does not make you stronger or weaker or better or worse than anyone else.  We are all the same.

I hate racism.  It is something that is inexplicable to me.  I understand that is easy to recognize that there are differences in people, but to hate those differences, to hate an entire group of people for those differences is completely alien to me and I will always stand against it.

But the other thing that I hate is when people take the charge of racism and throw it out unsubstantiated.  To me, it is absolutely a sign of intellectual weakness. To make the false charge of racism is as equally bad as racist behavior itself. 

When I was in the military there was a man who did not like me and I really didn’t care for him much either.  One day he was really mad at me and he told me that I didn’t like him because he was black.  I told him that wasn’t true, I didn’t like him because he was a jerk. 

Because I stood up to the bully am I a racist?  Am I a racist because I disliked someone who was black?  It’s a ridiculous question but it bears asking because that is the exact attitude that many on the left are asking you to consider. 

There is a group of political activists known as The Tea Party who have formed in the last year for one main reason.  They do not feel that the amount of taxes that are being levied upon the American citizenry by this Administration is fair.  While it might not be “Taxation without Representation” it is definitely “Taxation without proper Representation”.

Agree or disagree with this group, in this country they have an absolute right to stand up and ask to be heard.  But in the last year it seems that things have changed.  While we took a major step forward and elected an African-American as President, apparently we took a major step backwards by saying, “if you disagree with him, you’re a racist”. 

Why is this happening?  Because when you are charged with racism, your message gets lost.  Suddenly what you are trying to say gets overshadowed by the fact that people are now looking at you with skepticism and anger - even if the charge is. not. true.

I have no doubt that within the Tea Party group there are some people that have racist tendencies.  Such as I am sure that within any group there are people of that caliber, unfortunately. If I remember correctly it was Bill Clinton himself who said to Ted Kennedy that just a few years ago, Barack Obama would be getting the two of them coffee.  That’s a pretty racist statement. 

I simply do not believe that this Tea Party group as a whole is racist.  I don’t believe that’s their message at all.  And I challenge anyone to show me ANY proof to the contrary. 

What scares me is the amount of people that simply believe this charge without any proof to back it up.  That’s scary, because if it’s so easy to believe something like that, then how easy will it to believe other things? 

In my life, I have dated women of a variety of nationalities (Native American, African American, Japanese, etc).  One of my closest friends in the Marines was African American (and gay).  I have worked with and for people of a variety of nationalities.  I have no racist tendencies whatsoever and I absolutely relate to this Tea Party and what they stand for. 

Our current President is implementing policies that I personally think are harmful to this country.  This has nothing to do at all with the fact that he is African American. 

People stop the silliness of crying wolf simply to stop a group you disagree with.  This is the greatest country this world has ever known and we simply have to stop acting like a group of school age children when it comes to resolving our differences.  We are never going to move forward if we continue to move backwards.

Westboro

Posted by Doug White under Spiritual

This week a travesty of justice occurred.  What made it worse is that it happened to a father that has had at least two major travesties already occur in his life.

What I’m referring to is the recent ruling in the case of the Westboro group and Albert Snyder.  Mr. Snyder’s son, Matthew Snyder was killed in Iraq 4 years ago.  When his family had his funeral services, the Westboro group decided that they needed to stage a protest outside and nearby the funeral. 

What was the protest about?  Were they protesting the war?  Nope.  Were they frustrated by our military presence in some location? Nope.  What they were protesting was…homosexuality.  They have decided that God is punishing America for its tolerance on homosexuality by killing its soldiers. 

Mr. Snyder took them to court and won.  But this week, that win was overturned and if that wasn’t bad enough Mr. Snyder was ordered to pay the court costs of the Westboro group.  I simply cannot understand the logic of our judicial system at times.  More and more often, it seems the decisions made by people who are supposed to be judicially smart end up being completely stupid.  I will leave that part of this story at that.

This Westboro group absolutely disgusts me.  You may notice that I have not identified them as Baptist or as a Church.  I won’t do so because they are neither.  Anyone who believes that this group is following in the ways of Christ simply does not understand what it means to follow in the ways of Christ.

Their primary issue appears to be homosexuality and as a Christian, I do believe that the Bible is clear that homosexuality is a sin.  I also believe that the Bible teaches drinking is a sin.  I believe that the Bible teaches lying is a sin.  I believe that the Bible teaches murder is a sin.  I believe that there are many things that the Bible teaches are sinful and I also believe that the Bible does not indicate that ANY of them are worse than another.

Because every sin is a black mark in the presence of God, all of them hold equal weight in the sense that none of them are acceptable to Him.  This is why He sent His Son down to Earth to be a sacrifice for ALL sin.  As we are headed into a celebration of that sacrifice this very weekend, it is amazing to me that selfless act was done for me – and for anyone else who believes – so that I may have my sins forgiven and can one day spend eternity in Heaven.

My Pastor has often asked a question that strikes me as so profound.  When Jesus Christ died on the cross, how many of your sins were in the future?  The answer of course is…all of them.  This doesn’t make sinning easier or more acceptable; instead it makes the sacrifice so much more powerful and causes an earnest desire to try not to sin any more.  While we fail from time to time, by trying to work on that relationship with Him, we only continue to grow.

This group has twisted that very message into something obscene.  They laugh in the face of tragedy.  They mock those in pain.  And they claim to do this in His name.  In a time where many have doubts that Christianity is real, they make matters even worse by their perverse behavior.

In the age of people such as Jim Jones, David Koresh and the like, the line between spirituality and cult-like behavior seems to be growing closer and closer together in the eyes of many people.  As a proud Christian myself, that bothers me in ways that are hard to describe.  I think people are so much better off with a Christian faith than they are without, I really do.  But when I see such an obvious cult such as this group masquerading as Christians, I can see why many are running away from Christianity today.

As Christians ourselves, we really need to stop pretending these types of people will just go away and speak out against them.  We need to make sure that people know that there truly is a difference between obscene hatred of all around you and a love of all mankind and a desire for them to see the wonderous powers of Him.