Monday, January 27, 2014

Should I Be Silent ?

There are Christians here in the US and around the world who don't live up to what the Gospels direct us to be. They're called people. We all have failings and struggle to overcome where we see where we've strayed.. All but the most saintly among us fail to see just how jagged our path is or the one pair of footprints in the sand.

But should I be silent ? When those who dare to call themselves Christians turn a blind eye toward those who suffer because of their actions. Should I be silent ? No. The economic violence directed toward the poor, sick and disabled are crimes in the eyes of God.

The Bible is full of chastisements such as this;

Woe to those who enact unjust statutes and who write oppressive decrees,
Depriving the needy of judgment and robbing my people's poor of their rights, Making widows their plunder, and orphans their prey!
What will you do on the day of punishment, when ruin comes from afar? To whom will you flee for help? Where will you leave your wealthIsaiah Chapter 10

The evangelical right and fundamentalist conservatives who claim to know the Bible well act as though these teachings are invisible. Catholics should know better, but, despite the teachings of the saints and Pope John Paul II in modern times, our conservatives have often behaved the same. They warmed up to the right-wing of the GOP, because of the single issue of abortion. They've fallen away from the entirety of Catholic Social Teaching in favor of all things belonging to the extremists of the Republican Party.

Seven Themes Of Catholic Social Teaching

With the popularity of our humble Pope Francis, lies hope for more engaged priests, religious and parishioners. And a healthy Church paving the way for a truly compassionate legislature that puts the needs of the poor, sick and disabled ahead of the rich and powerful of the world.

This is long, but, it contains many gems.

The Joy of the Gospel

Saturday, January 18, 2014

Struggle against Al Qaeda continues

Well it's 2014 and we are still at war in Afghanistan against the Taliban and with Al Qaeda, wherever they raise their ugly heads. Be it Pakistan, Yemen, Sudan, the US or their presence and influence throughout the Middle East, the Obama administration is tracking them down. As the multiple drone strikes would lead us to believe.

Approval for the war in Afghanistan has dropped to 20% . I can't help but think that the longer we're there and the more civilians, especially women and children, we kill and injure the more enemies we create. It seems to be a vicious circle with no way out. War is easy to get into, but, almost impossible to get out of, as everyone should know.

I worry most about the women and girls who will become acid targets or worse, from the Taliban, just because they have embraced their new freedoms, especially education. They wouldn't be in this position, of hope, if it wasn't for us. They may owe us some level of gratitude, but, we owe them protection, because, of what our actions have initiated. I'm in favor of a quick organized escape for those women, and their loved ones, who desire it.

Drones and how they are used is classified. Reports suggest that they have been useful in killing Al Qaeda leadership. But that success seems to be at the price of the lives of women and children noncombatants. Amnesty International is the best source here;

"Will I Be Next?" US Drone Strikes in Pakistan