Partisan Politics and Gun Violence – NYTimes.com

I grow increasingly tired of The Peoples Congress in Washington. At every corner, one side or the other makes turning it virtually impossible. In this case, they offer us up to suffer at the end the gun. For money, and for power. For votes.

And they’ll soon turn to telling us why God wills it, why He want’s you to be able to kill border jumpers.  Why She will steady your sights on your aggressor. Why It will prevail with superior firepower.

Partisan Politics and Gun Violence – NYTimes.com.

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Your truth, and nothing but your truth? Come on.

I’ve always been of an opinion that being able to have a discussion online trumps having to tolerate hateful speech. I’m inclined to change that opinion today. We’re entitled to our opinions, and we’re entitled to angrily disagree. We’re endowed with rights to freedom of speech and expression. But not without certain caveats, In my opinion.

We don’t need to be crude. We needn’t hurt people. We ought not trample a person’s dignity simply because an idea they uphold isn’t one you subscribe to. This goes for everyone. If you’re so entrenched in a position or idea that your immediate reaction is to despise and ridicule the person or group who has presented a topic or reaction that you don’t hold or agree with, you need to withdraw to a quiet place and ask yourself, honestly, if you’d like to be addressed that way.

Too often today, on religious, spiritual, and other contemplative pages and discussions, the honest discussion is broken apart by someone who desires only to take away, not contribute.

You can have an opinion or a position AND find a way to make your argument thoughtfully and with a little humility. I’ve gained more by being open to the idea that everything I was taught is A truth, not THE truth.

Oh, and writing in a way understandable to those of us who grew up in an age when 160 characters was not considered long form writing would be helpful. Just Saying.

Finding The Sacred in The Ordinary

If you’re not familiar with Fr. Greg Boyle, listen in. Wondrous and Awesome.

It’s about a lethal absence of hope. It’s about kids who can’t imagine a future for themselves. It’s about kids who aren’t seeking anything when they join a gang. It’s about the fact that they’re always fleeing something, always, without exception. So it shifts the way you see things. Somebody, Bertrand Russell or somebody, said, “If you want to change the world, change the metaphor.” And that’s kind of how we want to — I think we need to proceed in something like this. So if you think it’s the Middle East, you’re quite mistaken. If you think it’s Northern Ireland, wrong again. It’s about kids who’ve ceased to care. So you want to infuse young people with hope when it seems that hope is foreign.

Father Greg Boyle on the Calling of Delight: Gangs, Service, Kinship | On Being.