Observations of an Ordinary Mind
I had this idea of expressing my observations of the world around me for some time and wasn’t sure what the best format would be to accomplish such a task. My limited attention span has, at least for the time, precluded the notion of writing a book and it seems that a blog works best for conveying what I’m thinking at any given time. At least I hope so. But what is this blog about you might ask? I want to address the third rails of decent public discourse, you know, politics and religion. In spite of the trepidation I feel expressing what I’m thinking into cyberspace, thereby proving that I am insane, there seems to me the existence of a disconnect in how our praxis of faith intersects with our public life and I feel compelled to address that disconnect.
Hopefully in this discourse we will be able to learn together. I will learn what others think about the selected topics, I will learn how better to express my thoughts, and in our joint discussion, achieve better understanding within our community which hopefully can result in a mutual respect for dissenting opinions and how our increased understanding can work to the betterment of society at large. Additionally when we agree about a topic, we can be in solidarity with each other and seek positive outcomes for our common goals.
Sometimes, the posts will be silly, a response to something silly that exists within society. Sometimes, they will be serious. What is important however is that we have the conversation.
Speaking of silly, we have entered the silly season. By silly season, I mean that time of year when those of a more conservative nature start their caterwauling over the supposed “War on Christmas” that “threatens” our religious freedom. The latest iteration of the rhetoric involves Starbucks and the Red Cups. A secular company changes the color of its cups for the holiday season and all of a sudden the United States is denying baby Jesus and my ability to go to church on Sunday is threatened. Really? Is this the best we can do to find trouble in this country? I guess that means I can forget about the student loan debt crisis, the rising cost of healthcare in the country, and I certainly shouldn’t waste my time worrying about an increasingly militarized police force denying due process to the citizens, because Starbucks is threatening my right to religious expression by not putting snowflakes, stars, or baby Jesus on a disposable cup which contains coffee I spent too much money for. Frankly I think we should feel guiltier if that disposable cup wasn’t recyclable, that and paying $4.00 for a cup of coffee.
I can let go of that silly idea that not only are the police becoming quicker on the trigger, but my own neighbors are as well. There is an arms race going on within this country but I don’t need to worry about that, never mind the fact that I may be shot at a traffic light because I didn’t give a proper turn signal, because Starbucks hates Christians and Jesus, and has declared war on God by not including a nod to the Divine on their drinkware. That the real tragedy, that’s what I really need to be worrying about. I don’t need to call or visit my neighbor when they are sick, or help a hungry person get a meal. I can forget my friends who are going through a rough patch spiritually, physically or emotionally. I don’t need to spend time in quiet reflection and meditate on the grace of God and its implications in my life. I don’t need to be concerned about living up to the witness of Christ’s life on earth and how I can best be like Christ. Love your enemies? Bah! Humbug! Starbucks hates Jesus and Christmas, and I need to get cracking on that! “Happy Holidays” indeed…. Why before you know it, I’ll be forced from my place of worship and compelled to drink overpriced gourmet coffee that doesn’t recognize the sovereignty of God! I won’t stand for it! God must be represented in my daily caffeinating activity!!!!! Freedom!!!! “Murica!!!! God!!!! Jesus!!!! and other holy words that at the moment escape me because of my righteous outrage and indignation directed at the heretical corporate Satan Starbucks. Ok, maybe I did have a little too much coffee today and I’m feeling a little jittery; I mean that Pike’s Place is pretty tasty after all… Still though… “Murica!