Sunday, December 10, 2017

Do Not Let Us Fall Into Temptation

Usually I skip over stories that have to do with the Pope, but I've been reading more of them since Francis took the rather large yarmulke a few years ago because he seems to get the part about treating people like humans. He still has work to do with women and the Rohingya, but his proposed new change to the Lord's Prayer (which I have as a 45 rock version from 1973) comes at a most perfect time.

Temptation seems to be all the rage these days and I have to agree with Francis that the problem is not with a deity leading us there, but with us as functioning people resisting the lure. And we do have problems with that.

From national and state politicians, media moguls, entertainers, business executives and, yes, the President of the United States, men have been tempted to use their power and influence to harass, rape, threaten, bully and terrorize both women and men for...what? Sex? Influence? Power? Babies? There's a pathology here because rolling the dice and hoping you don't get caught must be part of the demonic thrill involved in the chase. And sometimes, even an apology does not substitute for tears.

But there are other temptations that are weakening us too. The Republican Party, tempted by power, is shutting out any reasonable attempt at bipartisanship on health care and taxes, and I imagine that they'll extend their terrible ideas to infrastructure, government spending and immigration.

The Democratic Party is similarly tempted by the thought of overreaching in their opposition to the president by becoming, at times, irrational baying wolves, calling for impeachment or overturning the election results. Neither of these will lead to the path to power, nor do I believe that they will become a force that compromises or ends the partisan war being fought throughout this country.

For all of this, I am not a religious person, but occasionally religious leaders do tap into the zeitgeist, intentionally or not. We could all use a little humility, and if it won't come from the president or his inner circle of sycophants, then it must come from us because only the American people can put an end to tolerance of lies, misdeeds and obstinate behavior.

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  1. I completely agree.

  2. Look Bob (can I call you Bob) I have to disagree with you. It's human nature to want things, in the two examples that you gave here you point out lust for power. Power over another person of the entire country, but generally people want power. Is it wrong to want to have your ideals and beliefs be implemented in your society. You argue that we should put aside our parties and work together however I don't see that as an option. Your argument will never succeed, the majority of people only see things one way, they are either right or wrong, they never look at the other side of an argument or consider that they might be wrong. We live in an age of fake news that riddles social media, news sites and people don't bother to look up further information, they just run with it because it lines up with what they believe. We, as the human race, will never learn. If you recall from the past we have had these things happen before a civil war, riots and protests but we never learn. We always revert back to our basic instincts, we want the power to have what we believe is right be the law of the land. Today we see that with the Republicans, Democrats, I'm sure that with any position of power people forget about working together. So Robert, I suggest that you take a more cynical approach to the problems that plague our society, we will never fix them, history repeats itself and will repeat itself over and over.
    Thank you for reading this.

  3. Thanks for your reply. There are many instances throughout our history where the two parties have worked together or at least were able to constructively compromise. I think you're being a bit too negative about our prospects. We will come out of this historical phase at some point. Sometimes it takes the recognition that we are going to lose part of our national identity to do it. That time might be at hand,