This last week has been one heck of week in the headlines, hasn't it? I am not the most political person, choosing to follow the golden rule instead, being kind and gracious (and, as my family knows failing sometimes) but it is hard not to speak out when hatred falls so easily all around us. I am not a chicken little kind of person. I generally believe the sky is not falling and things will work themselves out but I have to tell you, I am truly scared that the America we inherited is not what we will be leaving to the coming generations.
In some ways that is good, some things needed changing...there is no place for hatred, suppression or segregation in the land of the free. But in others, it's frightening.
I am not just talking Duck Dynasty here but also all the hoopla about Happy Holidays versus Merry Christmas. With the 'Left" yelling foul over one man's opinions and the "Right" crying wrong over Happy Holiday greetings, censorship one way or the other looks just as bad.
If an interviewer wants my opinion on a matter it is still my right to give it. I have many opinions that would surprise my family and friends, some would even find them out of line with their own beliefs and what they think mine should be but I am still entitled to have them and express them. I admire someone who doesn't waffle when asked a theological question, no matter what religion they are. (I wish I was bolder that way but the people pleaser in me comes out and I soften my answer so as not to offend.) They have integrity in their beliefs. I may not agree with them, their delivery may seem crude to me but as long as they are not espousing violence, I don't have the right to tell them they can't express those beliefs. We also have to be willing to accept the consequences of those words. I have the right to turn off that program or not buy that product.
If I choose to wish you all a Happy Holidays and not a Merry Christmas, that is my right as well. It doesn't mean that I am negating the birth of Jesus, it just means that I am wishing you happiness no matter what holiday you are celebrating and there are many celebrated in December. That includes the religious Christmas that I love and the secular Christmas that others celebrate and so many more. It doesn't change how or what I celebrate...it doesn't change the origination of Christmas nor the true meaning to me.
What scares me about this last week is that the act of censorship may one day prevent me from saying Merry Christmas without the threat of losing my job, my reputation and any good works I do. What scares me is that we as Americans might sleepwalk right into an America we never saw coming and wake up without the fundamental right to have an opinion and to speak out for injustice and hatred and basic religious freedoms.
I know this is not a normal hello Saturday post but this was not a normal week for me. Something was awakened in me and the need to express myself became more important than everyone liking me. If we are not careful the beacon of light that we know America to be will be put out. Blast me if you will, but I adore the life I have been blessed with in this country and I want my grandchildren and great grandchildren to adore it too.