Give Life A Try
Change the Direction by Changing the Paradigm
With the recent shooting at the Oregon community college our nation has experienced another horrendous act of violence and many families lives will be forever altered. In response, our nation's leaders, on both sides, seem to be more interested in advancing their own cause or agendas and less interested in the pain and suffering of the victims their families and friends.
The escalation of these acts proves that the rhetoric on both sides is nothing more than cheap grandstanding. They talk, they argue and yet the problem continues. Defending the Constitution is all well and good but the speeches have done nothing to decrease the problem. Nor in any way effectively address the problem. On the other side using emotions and fear has done little to stop the problem it may actually make the problem worse as it does nothing to address the core or underlying issue; what makes people want to hurt and kill others.
Arguing that more gun laws and that more gun control will solve the problem may sound good to a segment of society but does not address the core problem. Chicago has the strictest, or close to it, gun laws in the country and yet they have the worst gun violence, or close to it, of any city in the country. One sides defending the Constitution and the other sides arguing for more gun laws speaks to their agendas but does not address and has not addressed the core problem.
I believe there is a direct correlation between the escalation in capital crime and the diminishing of the sanctity of life. Whether we teach that ALL life is not sacred directly or we teach it indirectly by creating laws that diminish life makes no difference. Either way the message is the same; life is not sacred, life is not important.
When we, as a society, embrace laws that pick and choose which life is better and which life is more important we are embracing a message that says maybe life is only sacred or important sometimes and only in some situations or only when our nation's leaders determine them to be sacred, important or special.
I believe the overall need in our nation, our society, our families is to understand that ALL life is sacred.
We are a country of laws but we make a mistake when we believe that the laws alone will address our country's ills. The laws only work when we remember, realize and believe that all laws emanate from a higher authority and that the sanctity of life is the primary foundation for all laws.
Sadly we have developed the mindset that the laws alone are the solution. This is a false narrative; if there is not a belief that all life is sacred then what does it matter if I hurt someone. Without the connection to a higher authority the laws have little consequence for those who want to inflict pain and suffering. Evil exists in the world and evil will always exist. Evil can be tempered with laws that acknowledge a higher authority and laws that embrace the paradigm that ALL life is sacred.
I believe embracing this paradigm would help in addressing all of our nations controversial issues:
If people believed that ALL life is sacred they might treat their adversaries with more honesty and respect.
If people believed that All life is sacred they could come together on climate change as the debate would center more on the premise of being good stewards of the world we have inherited rather than arguing over my science is bigger and better than your science.
If people believed that ALL life is sacred then the debate on discrimination would take a radical turn. Today our nation seems to address discrimination by creating subsets, by suggesting that this group was hurt or this group needs help or this group needs special attention. They address these problems by creating special categories or classes of people. You cannot get rid of discrimination by creating subsets and protected classes of people. All you do is pander to one group or another and the unintended, hopefully unintended, consequence is more discrimination.
If people believe that ALL life is sacred there would be no reason for hate crime legislation. It is creating subsets, special categories of people. Why is it a greater crime to kill someone because they are Muslim or gay or black? If ALL Life is sacred then taking a life is wrong no matter who it is and no matter what group or no matter the circumstances.
If we believe that ALL life is sacred then we have to believe it is Sacred from conception to natural death. Which means that abortions should not be embraced and funded by government. It also means that the death penalty needs to be abolished. People need to be held accountable for their crimes but we are undermining the paradigm that ALL life is sacred when we as a nation, as a society are modeling something to the contrary. If society can pick and choose what life is sacred what life is important then we shouldn't be surprised when our nation raises children with the same belief and mindset. A society can't diminish life and then wonder why their citizens are doing the same.
Now I am not naive, I know that many people and groups have defined themselves and developed terrific incomes from taking one side or the other. But if we were to rationally step back and look at what their line-in-the-sand positions have gotten us it is clear that they are causing more harm and spawning more evil than they are reducing or solving. Violence is on a rise and the dissension among our leaders is causing distrust and disgust among the populous. Our leader's agendas are winning, people wishing to do evil are winning and sadly the average citizen is losing and paying an enormous price. In some cases the ultimate price.
My recommendation, my challenge is for us to come together and Change the Direction by Changing the Paradigm - Give Life A Try.