Soap Box #1. I didn't watch the Grammy awards, and from all reports, I only missed that they decided to drop the veil of pretending to care what we plebeians think. Today's entertainers continue the relentless quest for how to find the underside of the bottom of the barrel of bad taste. Miley outdid Brittany who outdid Janet, and now Katy Perry seeks to carve out her niche with all who like watching a cocktail of fire, pole dancing and Satanic references. But I'm more stunned anyone has any energy to express outrage.
I'll give the girl credit, the bar has been raised...or lowered, depending upon how you want to work that metaphor.
As the whole of the entertainment industry commits itself to triple dog daring each other how to lick and twerk enough to cause stomach upset, we grow less capable of having our sensibilities rocked. So in the interest of self preservation (I don't want to bleach my brain or eyeballs), let's just tell them, the culture is dead, they win. We'll declare ourselves outraged and shocked and
For example: the Governor of New York declared those who hold pro-life views aren't welcome in his state. Before someone says, "You're taking it out of context...he meant." I've read what he said. I've read what he said we should think about what he said. I've read the "context."
Here's my response. If someone like say, Sarah Palin said, "Those who are pro-choice should form their own state or get out." The calls for her head that haven't yet been made, would still be non stop streaming on the television. The internet would melt from the scores of posts, tweets and blogs about the intolerant right wing. No later back pedaling, I only meant extremist when I said that would satisfy.
So no. I'm not buying his latest non apology or the ditto he received from the new mayor of New York. They meant it. They think it. They believe it. Pro-lifers, we shouldn't be part of the public square. Besides, there aren't that many of you so just go with the flow.
We're gumming up the utopia that would be by daring to not agree.
Which brings me to Soap Box Issue #3
Modern thinkers love to remember Saint Francis as the sort of patron saint of bunnies, and he loved the earth so, there's that. But all that other stuff? Forgettaboutit!
Any time Catholics integrate faith into the whole of life, we're just being simplistic. Probably people said that to SAINT FRANCIS too.
Following the arguments of those who think Catholics ought to just get over themselves and their religion and stop imposing their values on others by not wanting to pay for birth control or abortion, the general gist of it is this:
For those of you who still believe in God, trust us. We know God understands if we need to make allowances for modern living even if you don't. They then assert there isn't anything in the bible that says "No abortion" or no "birth control." followed by some attempt to claim there isn't any God but if there was...He/She/It/ would think like they do.
Being Catholic means turning the other cheek. So I'm feeling a bit cheeky today, mirthful and merciful. Turning the other cheek isn't rolling over. It's fighting back with grace, humor, joy, wit, knowledge and truth.
Our society is trying to discern do we serve the government or does the government serve us?
If it is the former, then any who think otherwise must be brought to heel, if it is the later, than there is room for those for whom religion, faith, vocations, aren't to be kept in a box for Sunday or simply used at the soup kitchen. I could argue that people who believe in what Jesus said at the sermon on the Mount about feeding the hungry, serving the poor, caring for the sick, visiting the lonely to the point of living it are the reason for being at mass on Sunday and why you serve at a soup kitchen, they are why there is a soup kitchen. But I'll point out instead, you won't have a society of civilized kind people if the only reason for not breaking the law is the threat of punishment, you will have martial law even if it is only done via economic lashes of the whip.
Free people think freely, speak freely, worship freely, act freely. They hold vigorous debate, they argue, and they stipulate that the other side may disagree without being utterly devoid of sense, sensibilities and legitimate grievances. Memo to Laura Levites and all those who think wishing evil, violence and death upon political opponents is clever thoughtful commentary. Stop it. And if you can't stop yourself, I'll just say (cause I'm Southern), "Bless your heart." and then because I'm Catholic, I'll have to (and it won't easy), pray to mean it in a non ironic or sarcastic way.