I’m seeing a ton of vitriolic comments all over Facebook, Twitter and other social sites about how we need to “stop being PC” and really address the terrorist issue by “really talking about what’s happening” without “censoring ourselves” to make everybody else comfortable.
As a Christian Pastor, I tend to raise an eyebrow at this. Not because of the lack of PC-ness, but because of the repressed anger I’m seeing. Yet this lack of PC discourse seems to be what people need right now. So okay. If that’s what everyone thinks will help — I’ll go there. As a Christian Pastor, and as a white American female, I’ll dump my PC filter and say it like it is in an effort to help us all heal. That seems to be what everyone is calling for.
So here it is.
America, you’ve gone yellow.
You’ve gone from a dignified nation who stood confidently in our identity knowing who we were in our strength while proudly accepting our melting-pot role to the world, able to extend compassion to the world’s citizens when tragedy struck without being intimidated by other religions or ways of life because we were so secure in our own global role — to an hysterical mess of knee-jerk exceptionalism, racism, gross misinformation propelled by our media as we Sheeple just sit back and buy it because educating ourselves takes time and work and lord knows we could be binge-watching ‘Breaking Bad’ instead, and 140-character headlines that are easier to whip into a frenzy than whacking a hornet’s nest with a stick.
Stop it. Snap out of it.
Get your intellect and your decorum back. Grow up emotionally. Have your opinions and express your incredulous anger at atrocities committed around the world, but get a grip. Stop acting like a frightened trust-fund-baby whose parents threatened to take the freedom of their credit cards away, and start acting like a World Citizen that can take one for the team while they console another who is hurting. Suck it up. Act like AMERICANS, not a contestant trying to get through an episode of ‘Survivor’ or that one chick at Walmart’s Black Friday sale that body-checks an old lady just to get an extra discount Duck Dynasty T-Shirt.
Yesterday when I pastored church, I addressed how to curtail our need to demonize that which frightens us. Fear begets fear. For many right now, that fear is Islam. For those confused by the concept of Islam, or who believe that all Muslims are terrorists, this guy being interviewed on the video below hits the nail on the head in spite of the leading questions by CNN, who didn’t enjoy his honest factual answers that couldn’t be manipulated and don’t support the American vitriol towards this religion.
Before we become part of the extremist problem by pushing *extreme* ideals that we claim are the “god’s honest truth” because we read it online so we’re passing around propaganda that supports our freak-out and subsequently causing others to freak out, let’s get our heads in the game. Let’s get our facts straight rather than purporting fan-fiction authored in fear. We can’t address a terror problem if we’re insisting on creating a war with every Muslim on earth. That’s not addressing a problem. That’s starting one. That’s ignorance and it’s dangerous ignorance at that — just as dangerous as extremist Muslims who want to war after every other religion.
I’m stunned by the amount of hyper-paranoia over one world religion because of a few minority extremist sects. WOW. What about the millions of other peaceful Muslims? Did you know that the word “Islam” in Arabic, though meaning “submission / resign oneself / surrender” (as to a higher power), also shares a root with the word “Peace”?
How frightened we have become, America? Looks like the terrorists are winning after all, for many of you. You may want to consider that before pushing around the internet a bunch of garbage that’s just not true but is scaring the dickens out of everybody. Way to help out ISIS.
Don’t turn into the people that terrify you. I’m warning folks ahead of time — I’ll be deleting off this thread any of this “Sharia law” propaganda or “why Islam will ruin the world” propaganda that only fuels misinformation and fear. This is MY page. Spread misinformation and fear on your own wall or blog, to your own audience.
So how are you enjoying our non-PC discourse? If you’re like most Americans, you’re already bored, rolling your eyes with the “Yeah, yeah, yeah, I’ve heard it before” expression on your face, already flipping through the channels looking for the next biggest thrill.
Alas, you can stay on this channel — as I can help you there as well.
You want to get really un-PC? You want a real throw-down, the kind of tell-it-like-it-is verbal blow-out that has America captivated with “candidates” like Donald Trump? I’m not sure that you do. Not when it could all be directed at you, rather than “those people”. Yet since we’re being as UN-PC as we can be here, as that seems to be what the American public is calling for in our obsession with brute demonstrations that project our lack of ability to really identify where our fear is coming from, let me provide you with what many Americans have been craving.
I give you the most UN-PC commentary on world terrorism of all:
America terrorizes itself. Americans feel powerless, and have since the Twin Towers fell in 2001 and then again in the Recession of 2008. We have a grid-locked Congress and a relationship with lobbyists and big money in government that neuters anyone in the Executive Branch. We are fearful because we fear we aren’t taken care of, even at home, by our own. We are too busy fighting over who is married to whom, who is doing what with their body, and who gets a tax break. We’ve become a nation of obsessed busy-bodies spitting hyper-criticism away from ourselves to mask our own feelings of weakness.
We tolerate poverty in America yet criticize it in other parts of the world. We have become the biggest demonstration of hypocrisy on the planet as a “Christian nation” who has forgotten to apply the most basic tenets of the Christian religion: Love and Acceptance of All. We continue that demonstration of hypocrisy while preaching the doctrine of the “American Dream”, holding much of the planet’s wealth and opportunity for advancement in technology, yet trailing far behind in first and secondary education, health care, and poverty per capita, as we restrict our resources to only the privileged few.
With gun violence making headline news, we feel we can’t even keep ourselves safe within our own borders because we have forgotten how to care about our neighbor. We handle our daily feelings of being invisible by showering movie theaters and schools with bullets, just to show anyone watching that we’re alive.
We demonize brown-skinned people because they are taking jobs that we whites statistically refuse to do anymore because we aren’t “paid enough”, jobs like manual labor, cleaning toilets and working at fast food chains. And then we whine that there are no jobs.
Overall as a nation we are frozen in fear, laziness, and in emotional impotence waiting for “someone at the top” to come riding in on their white horse and make it all better for us. Even as we elected a “grassroots” President with our convictions of “changing corrupt government” by getting involved in our own communities, as he asked us to — as many pledged to at the time — we got bored with the heavy lifting as we always do and dropped the ball. Instead, we sat waiting for the President to “fix it” for us while we put our feet up and watched the Super Bowl. Yet we still complain.
We have forgone personal accountability for the credo of “someone else will handle this” while we hit the 20% off sale at the nearest outlet mall. America, we have become an exercise in denial, escapism, blame, fear, malaise, segregationalism, overall laziness, and emotional entitlement (and by ‘entitlement’ I am not referring to welfare recipients. I’m referring to armchair quarterbacks.)
So how about we handle the fact that we’re feeling powerless and fearful as Americans in a different way? Can we not see that trying to give a face to our fear by uniting under the banner of “us-against-them” then snags a play right out of the ISIS handbook?
I, for one, as an American — am not going there. I love my country. I LOVE what my country was founded upon. And I stand in the gap for that. I love what my country REALLY stands for — not this second-rate sad shell of whining and blaming. I choose to educate myself. I choose to rise above this hysteria.
I choose strength and temperance. I choose Love above all things.
If you wish claim we live in the greatest country on earth — then act like it. Spread encouragement to your communities. Don’t hide in a hole and stockpile ammo. Build your communities. Don’t build walls around your communities. Talk about love for all, not hatred and segregation for those who aren’t like you. Engage in activities that encourage others to talk about their fears in a healthy way. Not blowing anti-Islamic Facebook posts all over creation to form “teams”. Stop comparing who is the bigger martyr– Christians or Muslims. This is not the time for the Oppression Olympics. Be honest with yourself, Americans, that you feel unsafe in the world because our own government and our own society has appeared to give up on us — not because of a handful of scattered extremists doing horrible things around the world. These things have always happened. America didn’t fall apart when Hitler rose to power. We didn’t fear that we would all be “forced into being German”. Saurkraut wasn’t put on a watch list.
Somehow along the way we have forgotten how to not cave into fear and stand in the strength of common world purpose. Perhaps the Twin Towers falling on our soil rattled our emotional constitution. It’s one thing to watch a war on TV. It’s another when it happens in the Big Apple. However, let’s take some pages out of the playbooks of other nations over thousands of years who have survived hideous atrocities on their own soil — and STILL operate under hope, love, and seeking common bonds with other global partners.
Buck up, America. This self-pity needs to end.
Own your fear. It’s yours. Danger is real — fear is a choice. No one can force us to feel fear. So don’t give fear a face. Don’t give it a cause or a nationality. Your fear lives inside of you. It is only triggered by outside sources. By giving your fear a cause, you are doing exactly what ISIS is doing — projecting their own fears onto hapless and innocent victims. You may not be killing anyone — yet. But you’re killing yourself. Fear is the great disabler, the great poison of the soul, the slow-leaking dimentia that distorts perception into nothing but chaos and ugliness. Fear is the drug on which most people overdose yet remain an upright walking corpse, dead in the eyes and dead to all further growth and possibility.
Love is the answer. I’m sorry there are so many of you that don’t believe this. And it’s a sad statement on where the United States of America is at, as a “Christian nation” (as claimed by many though we are a melting pot), that the Law of Love would be the first thing to be discarded. Yet love and respect for our fellow humans IS the answer. Jesus talked about it. John Lennon talked about it. Ghandi talked about it. The Quran talks about it. The Hindu and Jewish religions talk about it. The Wiccan practice cites “do no harm”. Sure, the people committing these atrocious acts don’t speak the language of love, so it’s likely that world militaries will deal with them in a language that they understand. However, for the rest of us that do speak this language, it’s very important that we don’t lose our ability to recognize the language intrinsic to the human soul when it’s spoken to US.
The moment we replace the Language of Love, the global, human language of our spiritual birthright, with the hysterical and isolationist silence of fear, well. That’s the time that we, as a species —
— call it quits.
Choose love, America. And stay in the game.