The Differences Between Us (perceived)

The primary purpose of media and political pundits (especially this section of the media), whether mainstream or the blogosphere, seems to be the polarization of society. That might be obvious to some while totally hidden to others. Demagogues exist on both sides of the political spectrum, that much should be clear. I will not name any names because frankly, most of us know who they are and if we’re wise we’ll steer clear of their rhetoric.

There are certain terms used by one side to describe the other, which I have used to describe those on the other side of the aisle. Terms like, moonbats, fundies, Jesuslanders, liberals, right-wing nut jobs and the like, litter the political landscape like so many broken bottles.

Recently I have, if not blatantly, endorsed Ann Coulter’s (an example of a demagogue, so sue me I named one) new book, Godless: The Church of Liberalism. While I agree with Ms. Coulter’s assertion that Liberalism is a religion, I’m not sure I’m all for her methods, especially in light of her claiming to follow the same One I follow. While she mostly speaks truth, she does so without love. Christians are commanded to speak the truth in love, something which Ms. Coulter must have missed reading in her Bible.

This being said I would like to quote the Oxford Don from his masterpiece, “Mere Christianity”:

Christianity thinks of human individuals not as mere members of a group or items in a list, but as organs in a body–different from one another and each contributing what no other could… If you forget that he [your neighbor] belongs to the same organism as yourself you will become an Individualist. If you forget that he is a different organ from you, if you want to supress differences and make people all alike, you will become a Totalitarian. But a Christian must not be either a Totalitarian or an Individualist.

Now, I had to quote that to set up how this ties with the perceived differences between us, here is what follows:

I feel a strong desire to tell you–and I expect you feel a strong desire to tell me–which of these two errors is the worse. That is the devil getting at us. He always sends errors into the world in pairs–pairs of opposites. And he always encourages us to spend a lot of time thinking which is the worse. You see why, of course? He relies on your extra dislike of the one error to draw you gradually into the opposite one. But do not let us be fooled. We have to keep our eyes on the goal and go straight between both errors. We have no other concern than that with either of them.

Now, when I read this the first thing I thought of was the demarcation in this country between Conservatives and Liberals, in others the disdain between Communists and Fascists. It made me think, what or who is the source for these divisions? Surely YHWH does not favor one over the other, for He is not the source for these divisions, I think Lewis hit it right on the head. We cannot allow ourselves to be blinded by the clever arguments of the demagogues of each side. We must see things as Our Lord sees them and not sell out to any one particular political party, and we must not martryrize ourselves by whatever the media decides to promote. The disease known as victimization extends to the right side of the spectrum as well as it does to the left.


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