Since my last post, the world has exploded into the biggest clusterfuck many of us have ever seen. Covid-19 had temporarily made hermits of a lot of us and with that came many different voices. Some of us were suddenly thrust into a world where we had no income. Some found that the situation was made worse with children no longer in school. Others were forced to live life as before, yet facing the threat of contagion, adding to stress. The lucky ones hunkered down at home with their families, even enjoying this time away. Less traffic, few obligations, more time with family, time to work from home made the transition so much easier for some. There was an underlying powder keg of worry, fear and desperation just bubbling below the surface when George Floyd was murdered by police officers in Minnesota at the end of May.
A culture war that had been brewing in the United States seemed to erupt then and it has gotten so much worse than anyone could have imagined. The divisiveness that permeated our culture, fueled by our leaders, now seeps into almost every aspect of our existence as we still struggle to cope with life during a pandemic. People are dying alone in hospitals, yet the mere act of wearing a face covering to protect others has almost become a symbol of who you are as a political person, not just something to be done out of caution and as a respectful way to protect others. The CDC says masks help prevent the spread of Covid-19, but some of our leaders have chosen to amp up their divisive rhetoric by using those acts of caring to promote “their side” and to denigrate, humiliate and bully those who choose to do the right thing.
The murder of George Floyd, Elijah McClain and Breonna Taylor (and others) have ignited a spark in many which has resulted in a new level of caring and understanding of racism in the United States. These sparks have flamed the fire of protests, which have unfortunately resulted in death and destruction. Those opposed to the movements have chosen to rally their sides in opposition. Standing up for the oppressed has never been wrong and it never will be wrong. Jesus always took the side of the oppressed and welcomed them with open arms. Destruction of property, including statues, while understandably fueled by these fires, is merely symbolic. I don’t agree with the glorification of historically terrible people; however, it is important to remember that the destruction of someone else’s property is a selfish act based on anger and rage.
I’m not writing this to shame anyone. I understand the anger. Somewhere along the line, we are going to have to start looking at our neighbors as people, not as “them” or “us.” It’s not going to be easy and I imagine I won’t live to see it, as I fear the division will worsen and the free for all that has resulted in the “me first” attitude will never be mended. Think about how you want to be treated. Remember the golden rule and do the right thing.