Why the Harsh Words

 

I just don’t get it, and I pray that I never will understand it.    I don’t understand why when two people disagree it has to become so personal.  I fully believe it is possible to disagree with a person and still act like a decent human being toward them.  There is no need for name calling, there is no reason to question someone’s intelligence.

I don’t believe that all Muslims are terrorists.

I don’t believe that all Christians are guiltless.

I don’t believe that all Democrats are evil.

I don’t believe that all Conservatives have my best interest in mind.

I can be concerned about radicals from any religion without hating people.   Just as I am not bothered by those who worry about radical Christians.  Killing an abortion doctor is murder and negates the very thing you are trying to protect… life.    I also don’t believe that everyone working in an abortion clinic is inherently evil, because I truly believe that MOST of them think they are doing the right thing, helping.  Whether I agree with what they are doing or not.

I believe that MOST cops are good and decent people, but that there are a few bad apples.  I’ve never been one to allow a few bad apples to spoil the bunch.  That said I don’t begrudge anyone who has had life experiences that make them weary of those who are in authority.   Authority has been abused, and we can’t ignore that… just as much as we can’t blame everyone.

I believe that MOST people who say and do stupid and careless things are not doing them intentionally.  Perhaps they don’t have the same life experiences to understand cultural sensitivities or realize that certain topics are just taboo.  I know that I am guilty of slinging words carelessly, regardless of what my intention was.  I’ve received some sharp words that cut deep, and I’ve had to weigh them against the person who unleashed them.

I tend to give the benefit of the doubt, forgive a lot, and I am growing more unoffendable every day.

I have a myriad of friends from different backgrounds, culturally and politically.  They have had life experiences of their own, or been influenced by tales of generations before them.  There are those who have walked hard roads, and others who have had it pretty easy.   This means with the current events hitting the news, well … it means I am hearing a lot of people’s perspectives and opinions.  I don’t mind conversation, disagreement, and even some stubbornness.  What is getting harder to accept is the cold, hard, and callous words people are choosing to use.

So much hate.  Why can’t we share our opinions and concerns with out broad generalizations?  Why must we assume guilt on everyone because of what a few have done?  Why can’t we even accept that we may have the slightest chance of being wrong (in part or in total)?

Why the harsh words?  Not feeling the love that we have be called to share with the world… particularly by those who are my family in the faith. 😦

#Write31Days – Post 28 – If You Were God

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I was listening to the radio this morning, when the show’s host posed the question:

If you were God, given all of his knowledge and power, what would be the first thing you would do?

Scoffed at the question, too easy.

But it wasn’t easy at all.

My first thought was to end abortions, but then I thought about the homeless.

So then I thought about ridding the world of homelessness, but then I remembered there are starving children with a roof over their heads.

I kept going down the trail… and I thought about criminals, and generally mean people.  I thought about poverty and in equality.  I thought about our country and developing nations.

Ultimately the trail brought me to the the only conclusion, the one thing that would be at the root of solving all these individual problems:  You have to change PEOPLE.  Changing their hearts so that they are more compassionate, honest, trustworthy, and good.  If you can change people, you can end abortion, murder, abuse, homelessness, starvation, etc.

When I picked up my daughter and her boyfriend from school, I posed the question to them.   Both smiled at the simpleness of the question, yet both struggled to give an answer.

The truth is even if God gave me all of his powers to do ONE thing… would only put a bandaid on a larger problem.  It would be also be moot, because God already did the ONE THING needed to save the world.

He sent His son, an innocent life, to die a sinners death, atoning for the sin of those He loves and calls His own.  Those who encountered Jesus before his death, became changed people…. and that hasn’t stopped and never will.

To change people, to change the world, we need to introduce them to Jesus.

#Write31Days – Post 20 – Subjective Value

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If you know me well, then you know where I stand on the subject of abortion.  I have always considered it a non-option, the baby is a life, and ending a pregnancy is ending that life.

You will also know that I don’t take this subject lightly, or to hyperbole.  I recognize that for most women who walk into an abortion clinic… this wasn’t an easy choice.

I don’t know what the circumstances were that led to their pregnancy.

Nor am I aware of the circumstances that led them to believe this was the best choice.

I am keenly aware that for many people the “best choice” is not one they are necessarily happy with.

I have made a point that I will never shame a person who has walked that road.  I can only speak against the industry itself, the society that has led many to believe that this is not only ok… but in many cases their “only choice”.   Society, even parents, have pressured teens to have an abortion in order to avoid shame.   Some churches will scream against abortion, as they tear down the women who get pregnant out of wedlock.  It leaves some thinking there is no other choice.

When I was in high school,  I know of three particular girls who got pregnant.  The first two were kicked out of their homes, one was kicked out of her church, and the third had an abortion.  At the time, I understood the choice the third girl made… because I saw what happened to the other two girls.

Let’s face it, with our judgment and condemnation we have never made it easy for the unwed mother.

But, let me clue you into something…  A BABY IS NEVER A SIN.

Yes, the act of having sex outside of marriage is not part of God’s plan, it is sin.   The resulting baby, is not.  It is a blessing.  Until we can take the shame off of pregnancy, women will go to abortion clinics to avoid shaming themselves and their families.

Until we can take the shame off of pregnancy, babies will not be considered a blessing.  Even those babies who were planned for, or the parents were excited about conceiving are shamed.

“You know how that happens, right?”

“Don’t you think two is enough?”

When we had our third daughter a family member actually said “She’s really pretty, but tell Gena she can stop now.”

Which brings me to “subjective value” and what taking an economics class taught me about abortion, and babies.

In economics the value of an item is based on how desired that item is.  The more people who want a particular item, the higher it’s value… thus the higher it’s price.

The interesting thing about that value is that it is totally subjective, and we don’t even need to be able to explain WHY we value one item over another.

I’ve always found it interesting that the value of a baby, among society as a whole, is not based on the baby’s  actual value at all.  Few are looking at the intrinsic value, or long term value of what that child will bring to the world. Instead the value of a baby is totally subjective.

It is why we can say, “sorry you lost your baby” when someone has a miscarriage.  However, call it a “lump of cells” when the baby is aborted.  The difference is value.  The “baby” was wanted by parents.  The “lump of cells” was not.

You would never hear ANY person (no matter their abortion beliefs) tell a grieving mother… “sorry you lost your lump of cells”.  NO!  Because, despite their personal beliefs… they know this woman WANTED this baby, and she is grieved over losing it.

You can have a baby of the exact same gestational age… but if a mom delivers the baby at home, and discards it in a trash can… she is a monster.  However, if that very same morning she went to an abortion clinic, we talk of her rights.

Value is subjective to the person making the decision.  What is more important to the person, this baby or whatever motivated them to consider abortion?

Not every abortion is “selfish” in the sense that they are doing it for their own gain.  Many women look at the world they would bring that child into and see it is as unsuitable.  We have failed to fully educate on the options available other than abortion, as a whole, in many communities.  More so, we have failed to remove the shame and stigma on the unwed mothers.  Even more importantly, we have failed to shape people’s idea of children to a place where their “subjective value” of life is one to be protected at all cost.

If we want stop abortion, we need to affect the subjective value of babies.  Society needs to not only stop shaming the unwed mother, but also needs to change it’s opinions of children.  When we value and celebrate every child, we value and celebrate every baby.  When we value and celebrate every baby, we will make abortion moot.

Women need to know that it is ok to put their career on hold, to stay home… without being condemned by their contemporaries.

Women need to know that it is ok to have a career and be a mother… without being judged by those who choose to stay home.

We need to make sure that as we are discussing abstinence, that we are also not just pushing against abortion… we also discuss the beauty the gift of adoption can be.

Parents should make sure that our children know that we may disappointed by their choices, but we are not disappointed in them.  Our disappointment should never cause shame that results in an abortion.

Society should stand behind the single women who have chosen life, and the church should be doing whatever we can to help them succeed.

On the Subject of Planned Parenthood

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I want to start off  by pointing out that I know a lot about Planned Parenthood.

I know about their questionable history.

I also know of women who benefited greatly from their services.

I know of the broken teens and women who walk in their doors, searching for an answer.

I know of those who stand outside with picket signs, trying to save lives.

I am also a bit of a skeptic.

When the first video on Planned Parenthood came out this past week, addressing the sale of fetal body parts and tissues, I reserved judgement for a bit of time.  I knew what I was seeing, and everything in me was leaning toward the legitimacy of the video.  But, knowing how things have ended up in the past, I was reserved about jumping on the bandwagon.  Propaganda presents itself on every side of every argument.  Perhaps this is just one person, one clinic, that is to blame.  I do not support abortion in any way shape or form, but I have never been quick to publicizing something without being certain of it’s accuracy.

Then Planned Parenthood responded, with their own video.  It was in watching their response, that I begin to find the original videos more credible  As an actress, I was taught a lot of things.  I was taught how speech patterns, volume, and tone can betray you.  As I listened to the woman, I could see she was deflecting attention from what they were being accused of.  She was repeating herself, she was focusing on what someone else was doing to deflect from any accountability to their own actions.

Shortly after, the second video on Planned Parenthood’s sale of fetal body parts and tissues was released.  This time it was much clearer, particularly the callousness of the negotiation over the fees.

I watched an interview with the spokesperson for Planned Parenthood, and it was a repeat of their first response.  Repeated phrases.  Deflecting blame.

Today, the third video came out. This time it was a lot more detailed on the process.  I’m not sharing the link because, frankly, you just can’t unsee some things.  It won’t be hard to find if you feel inclined to google search for it.

At this point, we as a people of conscious… whether you are pro-life or pro-choice… need to take a stand.

Something is clearly amiss.  Planned Parenthood is not being completely honest or transparent.  Investigation must happen in order for the truth to be revealed.

This is a time we should be united as a people, and question the ethics of the people who claim to help.