If you’ve ever wondered whether or not you’re a sinner, the Amazing Bible website has an inventory of 667 biblical sins you can peruse.
Spoiler alert: You’re a sinner. But I wouldn’t worry too much about it since Sin #664: Being worried, is one of the sins listed that you’re supposed to avoid.
Since EVERYTHING we do is a sin (seriously – check out the list) I’m not sure why we focus politically on some sins more than others? For example, no one took issue with Hillary’s wearing of pantsuits (Sin #611: Women wearing men’s clothing). And clearly, Sin # 580: Slandering or speaking against a child of God was ok with Trump supporters just as Sin #578: Cursing them that hate, was cool with Liberals.
Yet since the election, this divide as to which transgressions are acceptable moving forward has only gotten worse. As usual, it depends on who you ask but this transition isn’t just about differing ideologies. People aren’t passionately discussing their preference for small government versus the benefit of governmental safety nets. This exchange of power is unlike anything we’ve experienced because instead of merely transferring authority we are:
- Intensifying what it means to be disenfranchised in America,
- Redefining what it means to be an American President and some might argue,
- Revising what it means to be an American (with Conservatives and Progressives having very different points of view).
People like me feel vulnerable, unsafe and unsure of what’s about to happen because even though we all play in the same sandbox, a smaller, more vocal group of playmates have become infatuated by a stray dog with no tags that’s new to the playground. What’s worse is that they’re pretending not to notice that this dog, who’s been foaming at the mouth, just jumped in and shit in the corner.
Now it seems that a few dog lovers from that side are wondering if the bitch that barked too much but had tags and was updated on all her vaccinations in retrospect, would’ve been the better choice for playground mascot. And since their healthcare is about to disappear, they’re wondering if they’re going to be able to afford those rabies shots after all?
So what the hell are we going to do? How can we get along for these next four years?
Since part of “Making America Great Again” was clearly about being as Christian as possible, perhaps we should refer to religion for guidance?
Although my spiritual practice is more respect/inclusion and less dogma/scripture interpretation, religion has given us the perfect solution in the confines of the infamous Tolerance Doctrine. The “I like you. I just don’t like your lifestyle, but don’t worry, I’m happy to tolerate you until you come to your senses” point of view.
It’s pretty simple to do actually. I took the following excerpt on Gay Tolerance from Jesus-is-Savior.com and replaced all homosexual references with Donald Trump voter references to show how this will work [Bold emphasis (David J. Stewart) / Replaced words in red font (mine)]:
“I DO have tolerance for Donald Trump Voters because they are God’s creation. They are people whom God created and loved enough to die on the cross for. I am nice to all people. If you told me you are a Donald Trump Supporter, I would NOT condemn or criticize you in any way. Your life is not my business. However, this website is a pulpit where I speak the truth (like it or not). I do not judge anyone for I am a sinner myself. It is my duty as a child of God to take a firm stand against sin. So do I hate Donald Trump Voters? Not one bit! I love them enough to take the time out to try to reach them with common sense, facts, science and over 200 years of past Presidential precedents. However, I will not dip my sails or compromise what is right for anyone. Choosing Donald Trump as President is a sin, plain and simple; It is NOT an “alternate political lifestyle,” it is wicked sin.”
Although tolerance keeps us civil it is certainly conditional (and a little confusing frankly), I’m supposed to love you yet tell you that you’re wicked? Accept you yet pray that you change? Let you live as you see fit yet work on convincing you to think like me?
That’s the fundamental flaw with the Tolerance Doctrine. By definition it’s about enduring pain, humoring beliefs that differ from yours and being okay when others deviate from what you deem to be normal. It’s offensive to merely be tolerated and since our soon to be Tweeter-In-Chief can’t tolerate anyone that criticizes him, it’s sort of ironic that my tolerance of you is the best I can do right now.
I really hope to be able to add empathy to my repertoire. But acceptance? Well that may never come and you need to be okay with that.
To be clear, I don’t think you’re wicked but if you didn’t know that Obamacare and the ACA were the same then shame on you for not doing your homework.
If you thought it was okay to throw women, Mexicans, Muslims, African Americans, sexual assault victims, POWs, Gold Star Families, the press and the disabled under the bus for your pocketbook then you clearly don’t fear karmic retribution like I do.
If you simply wanted to shake up DC but didn’t realize that electing a non-disciplined, can’t-stop-tweeting, narcissist would negatively affect our democracy, then you probably need a new news source.
If this entire debacle was about a Supreme Court nomination then it’s time to finally end the chokehold that abortion has on Presidential politics. We can easily keep abortion legal yet live in a world where abortions are rare by increasing: reproductive health and prenatal care for all women; birth control access; sex education; as well as eliminating rape culture in the United States. So for God’s sake spend your time, energy and money on the above and abortion could be an afterthought when making your political decisions!
And if you weren’t willing to research whose platform offered the best solutions, and based this massive decision on novel, political rhetoric and the fact that you “just didn’t like her”, I don’t hate you.
But I am disappointed.
So tolerating you and your choice is the the best I can do right now. But don’t worry. Being tolerated is easy. Just ask every homosexual that’s ever been tolerated in lieu of being loved, supported and accepted.
It’ll be fine.
And if all you can do is tolerate my indignation, I have no problem with that. I’d rather we respectfully, reveal our inner outrage instead of bullshitting one another or trying to make peace just for passivity’s sake.
“Peace is not just about the absence of conflict; it’s also about the presence of justice. … A counterfeit peace exists when people are pacified or distracted or so beat up and tired of fighting that all seems calm. But true peace does not exist until there is justice, restoration, forgiveness. Peacemaking doesn’t mean passivity. It is the act of interrupting injustice without mirroring injustice, the act of disarming evil without destroying the evil doer, the act of finding a third way that is neither fight nor flight but the careful, arduous pursuit of reconciliation and justice.” ~ Shane Claiborne from Common Prayer: A Liturgy for Ordinary Radicals.
I’m just not interested in expending any energy toward a counterfeit peace. So for now, I’ll simply tolerate and spend that energy restoring justice instead.