Saturday, November 14, 2015

Keep Calm and Listen

Pre-note: This got kinda long, so if you want the good stuff, just read the red parts.

In light of the recent horrific events in Paris, I'd like to talk about something that drives me insane. I'm not going to talk much about the actual event; I don't feel like adding to the media frenzy more than to say that what has transpired is awful, and I pray for those who have been affected. I do not pretend to know what they're going through, but I do know that God can turn the bitter into sweet, the winter into spring, the lowly into kings.

Here's the thing. We act as if the extremists are the "people out there," the people out bombing innocents and beheading the faithful.

Yet I would like to posit that America is full of extremism, and it is a cancer that is destroying our nation from the inside.

I do not mean the average American is going out and performing murderous rampages.

I mean that the average American only knows how to type in all caps.

A politician lies?
"X'S ENTIRE LIFE IS BUILT ON A THRONE OF LIES! THE FEW THAT ARE LEFT TO SUPPORT HIM ARE IDIOTS!"

A fossil seems to indicate a species variation?
"EVOLUTION IS ONE HUNDRED PERCENT ACCURATE!"

A company turns out to be cheating people's money?
"ALL COMPANIES ARE THE BANE OF AMERICANS!"

One skeleton is found to be falsified?
"ALL EVOLUTIONARY SCIENTISTS ARE LYING FRAUDS!"

A potato is eaten?
"AMERICANS GROW FAT WHILE THE WORLD STARVES!"

And what does this do? What does this accomplish?? What good could possibly come of this?! You know what this causes? A house divided against itself.

And there are far too few people that have not indulged in this. I certainly have at points. But please, examine yourself.

I go to a private Christian school. So when Obama comes up, it's pretty common to throw him under the bus, as if he's secretly bent on destroying our nation, or is totally inept, or whatever. And while this may be fun to joke about, I sometimes forget that people actually believe this. And are very vocal about it.

And of course no effort is made to figure out if he actually does care about the country, or what he's actually been doing, or if what he has been doing has actually been so terrible. People forget that he's the head of a country, and he's a human. Imagine that. What kind of stupid system lets a human run a country. Yes, I do think he makes mistakes and wrong decisions. But I certainly am not going to make some insane extrapolation that he is the anti-Christ.

People need to stop shouting and start caring.

Because if you actually cared about the nation, you wouldn't waste your valuable time by throwing the president under the bus. You'd focus on things like: 1. Loving your neighbor. 2. Finding common ground between you and the other side. 3. Expanding upon that common ground to establish a connection, in order to further logical, lower-case letter debate. 4. Loving your neighbor. 5. Shutting up and listening. 6. COMPROMISING.

The list goes on. I got tired of numbers.

And of course, there are liberal extremists to. They may say things like, "ANYONE WHO BELIEVES IN A GOD IS A WISHFUL IDIOT WHO HAS NEVER OPENED A BOOK!"

The reason I dedicated more to the conservative side is because I understand that most of the people who read this are conservative, and it really bugs me that because they subscribe to a certain political view, they believe they are entitled to never compromise. Compromise is not weakness --- it is an acknowledgement that despite your beliefs, you need to accept some setbacks at the current time so that the country can move forward as a unified nation again. It's called sucking it up and dealing with it so the show can go on.

America is the result of great men with vastly different ideas coming together and realizing that, in order to survive, they may have to give up some things. It does mean you need to throw some issues away, but you do have to let them sit for a while. It happened in 1610, it happened in 1787, it happened in 1819, it happened during the Civil War, WWI, WWII, Vietnam... it goes on. I'm not saying be weak-willed. There are some issues where Christians definitely need to stand strong. But please...

My fellow Americans, please, stop the screaming.

I fervently pray that someone, from either end of the political spectrum, has the guts to sacrifice some of what they desire so that our States can be United. But it won't start with a presidential candidate. It has to start with you --- the everyday American. Try to understand what the other side is saying, before even thinking about what you might say in return.

Honestly, I could write a lot more about this, and how freaking angry it makes me that people on both sides don't make attempts to find any sort of common ground, or try at all to actually interpret where others are coming from. It sickens me. Bile rises in my throat when I read some of the things people say out of a place of complete ignorance.

Song of the Day: City of Hope, by Amanda Cook




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