To live content with small means; to seek elegance rather than luxury, and refinement rather than fashion; to be worthy, not respectable, and wealthy, not, rich; to listen to stars and birds, babes and sages, with open heart; to study hard; to think quietly, act frankly, talk gently, await occasions, hurry never; in a word, to let the spiritual, unbidden and unconscious, grow up through the common--this is my symphony.
~William Henry Channing

Friday, April 25, 2008

It's the Means...Not the End

Like most of us I have been spellbound watching the drama unfolding in Texas involving the members of Yearning For Zion ranch and our own government. My thoughts run the length of a football field and back again. The issues are multiple and complex with no easy button in sight to push.
As a believer…a follower of the true Jehovah…my heart breaks at the amount of deception these people have lived under. The twisted lies and man centered religion that doesn’t just harm in the here and now but also eternally condemns it’s members should fill every church with people interceding on their behalf.
Forget that…it should start in our homes…talking with our children about why this is wrong…showing our own offspring the truth found in God’s world about redemption and grace. Then we can take it to a communal effort of prayer in our churches.
How can I express the agony of a mother’s heart at the thought of someone stepping in and yanking your child out of your arms? A someone that in all reality you have been taught is the enemy…the devil incarnate…only compounds the issue. And also does much to reinforce the teachings you have all your life been taught. Uncle Sam has just stepped in and with ham handed actions confirmed every teaching that the government and outside world is bad, wicked and evil.
The grounds for these actions are now even suspect. Did the calls even come from a valid member of the sect? Does it matter? Apparently not as they claim to have uncovered evidence of abuse and have responded in good faith. Does anyone else have a feeling of déjà vu? So called evidence that leads to a call for action only to be questioned and/or renounced later?
Adolescent girls are encouraged to “marry” older men and have babies. Do I agree with this thought process? Absolutely not. Should the government have the right or responsibility to invade and remove children from where this is being practiced? NO. I can say that with resounding certainty because the allegations are not really the issue. How could they be when our country has some of the highest rates of teen pregnancies in the developed world?
As of 2006 Florida was ranked sixth in teen pregnancies with 48, 440 girls becoming pregnant between the ages of 15 and 19. Yearly there are around 750,000 teen pregnancies in our country. We even have a National Day To Prevent Teen Pregnancies. Will the DCF invade Florida and raid the homes of everyone of those girls and level charges of sexual abuse? Will they go arrest Mariah Carey for her chart topping single “Touch My Body” because it has an explicit sexual theme heard by thousands of teenagers? What about going after marketers and campaign companies that use sex to sell absolutely everything from aftershave to hamburgers? Will the government not hold them responsible for what they teach and practice? It won‘t happen and I’m pretty sure it’s because this really isn’t about what you believe about sex…just how you teach your thoughts and beliefs about sex.
So what is the real issue here? It’s different for different people I suppose. For some there will be high five-ing because those children were taken away from those twisted perverts…and it will go no further. The long arm of the government and the institute of religion, as well as freedom of religion, will all come into wide and varied debate. Honestly the impact and eventual outcome of this scenario is mind boggling if one tries to consider all the ramifications.
And the real issue for me is simple. How does living my life for the glory and honor of God interact with this situation? Or any other situation in our society? Education? Homelessness? Injustice? Poverty? Because even though I may not have all the answers I’m pretty sure that for me this is the real issue.


Paula said...

I find this entire subject very disturbing. I certainly do agree with you about the way our society accepts all of the inappropriate things that are being sung, placed on our televisions, over the internet, on billboards, and also in our everyday Pensacola News Journal. They are promoting prostitution by placing ads for "escort services." What our country won't do for money! I think we should find a way in which to stop "illegal" advertising. Of course we all have freedom of speech! However, if I were to post ads for "white, hetrosexual clubs" - how long would it be published anywhere?????

Anonymous said...

In one of the interviews I watched, the female news caster was trying to pin a member of the sect down as to whether or not they encourage teenage girls to marry young and have sex. An idea which clearly she found extremely disturbing. Uh, am I wrong, or is this the same country where sex ed is taught in elementary school, and condoms are handed out in middle schools and highschools? Why the outrage suddenly about teenage girls being encouraged to engage in sex at a young age? Of course being forced to marry someone is wrong. Of course polygamy is wrong. But lets go after ALL the adults that push sex on underage kids. Because last I checked, it was taught in our public schools, promoted on TV shows aimed at young audiences, and encouraged by modern pshycologists as part of healthy development. If it wasn't so sad, I could have laughed at the hypocracy.