Your Words Have Lasting Impact

I’ve mentioned before how we need to keep the ‘civil’ in our ‘civil discourse.’ Our country has always been known for strong opinions, yet we used to agree to disagree without resorting to violent phraseology.  

And now look what has happened in Arizona…

I can’t claim to know what has caused this current climate of rhetorical elevation to violence, but I can indicate that some who claim to be ‘leaders’ are failing in their role. Part of the burden of leadership is to maintain an air of civility and tolerance. In other words, you’re a leader, then lead others in the practice of sanity. Inflammatory comments are the essence of politics, and we can confront issues, have spirited discussions, and disagree.

My mom used to say, “Mind your mouth!” It’s time to start doing that again.

So where is it written that it is okay that to insinuate that the use of violence against others is an option in political disagreement?

People who encourage supporters with phrases like “Don’t retreat, reload!”, and speak of “Second Amendment remedies” are only encouraging this vicious trend. There are many quietly rational people in this country, yet we are still saddled with the lunatic fringe that is always looking for some authority figure to further enable them in their desire to harm others with whom they disagree. Having dealt personally with people like this in the past, to use rhetoric such as the above is to put a match to the fuse. I don’t CARE who your audience is; the nutcases are listening.

And the blood is on your hands, you wanna-be ‘leaders’ in the news who use violent and hateful rhetoric.

You cannot sit there like Herod and figuratively wash your hands of the violence if you are contributing to it. You cannot excuse it by saying, “It was a figure of speech,” or “it was a graphically descriptive way to make a point.”

We have to mind our words. Do everything in love. Keep in mind what Paul said in Romans 13:9-11:

The commandments, “You shall not commit adultery,” “You shall not murder,” “You shall not steal,” “You shall not covet,” and whatever other command there may be, are summed up in this one command: “Love your neighbor as yourself.”  

Love does no harm to a neighbor.

Therefore love is the fulfillment of the law.

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