On Monday, two things happened that are related to each other.
First, a troubled young man who was going to be served with eviction papers shot and killed two people before he himself was shot and killed.
Second, a new “reality” show appeared on the scene. ‘Stars Earn Stripes’ is hosted by Gen. Wesley Clark and includes “stars” such as Todd Palin, Terry Crews and Laila Ali. Supposedly the show is designed to honor members of the Armed Forces by putting these stars through sanitized operations.
Ok people, it’s time to start calling out the sins (that’s right I used the word sin) of idolatry [yet again] and jingoism.
How are idolatry and jingoism related? Well…excessive love of guns leads to thinking that any issue, any problem, can be resolved at the end of a gun. On a broader scale, believing that any and all issues or problems can be resolved at the end of a gun becomes believing that any and all issues can be resolved using overwhelming military force. But even more troubling is that this belief leads to belief that having the gun, having the military, somehow makes what you believe to be right—and the only right that there can be.
In my last post, I talked about believing that the gun rights-gun control debate is played out. I still think it is. However that does not mean that we religious liberals cannot talk about guns and patriotism. And how, in the United States, we have replaced the sacred/holy/G-d with guns and jingoism; that love and charity and faith and hope have been superseded by firepower and triumphalism.
3 multiple shootings in 3 weeks. Now is the time to talk about this country’s real religion.