17 September 2010

Sin Makes Judges Of Us All?

An interesting cross-cultural, international diversity affirmation thing unfolded on the radio this AM. Ultimately the issue was morality, but the conversations had more to do with who decides or judges the moral fitness of others.

An American Idol runner-up was talking to a host on a New Zealand radio programme today.

Mike, the radio host, asked Adam Lambert, the singer, about various things to do with his tour and then, "Why was it such a big deal that you are gay?"

Lambert answered, "Because I'm in America."

I guess Adam has been tagged more often as "openly gay" than as a singer and he wishes it were otherwise because singing is really his thing. "Being gay is just a side note. I don't want that to take precedence over my art."

Fair comment. Sexuality ought not be a condition for many judgments in life.

Other things are irrelevant too. I don't like that fact that being a woman can taint an intelligent comment I might make or that the fact that I'm single be the point upon which I'm accepted or rejected from certain circles. Some things just don't have anything to do with anything else.

The people I have a problem working with are those who make sexuality an identity marker. When was the last time someone introduced themselves to you, "Hi, I'm Joe and I'm straight."

We've been entertained for years by people who had lifestyles different to ourselves. Which lines do we draw, and where?

In the next segment of programming, another host, was discussing the "mistake" made by a NZ politician in obtaining a false passport in the name of a deceased child when the politician was 26, which was decades ago. Callers were suggesting the politician had made a mistake. The host was countering that it was not a mistake as the young-man-turned-politician had meant to do it, so it was intentional. He was playing with the words used, but it made for humourous asides. Other callers said that was despicable because it was a child's identity he'd made use of. Others ranted on side issues and were not logical enough to quote.

That brings in one of the pivotal points to this conversation: logic. You may take issue with a few things I've said, wondering where I stand on certain matters. If you know me, you'll know where I stand; with Jesus.

But one of the casualties in these kinds of conversations is logic. We can get so defensive, apprehensive, pious and emotional that we throw logic out with the sinner and ruin all opportunity for conversation!

Be able to argue your case without going to battle, and listen for viewpoints that might enrich the understanding of all.

The radio host later asked if there was any politician who could stand up to rigorous testing of all their previous behaviour, views and alliances? Was there anyone who had such an unblemished past that they would please everyone? John 8:7

Would we want a flawless individual in our government? Wouldn't be very representative of me.

Anyway, the question of morality came up and seemed like the thread through much of the controversial morning.

If we are going to argue for a commonly understood and accepted morality, we must agree on a source for morality. Is there a moral law-giver? Are our morals decided by legislation? Is it a democratic process upon which we all get to vote? Is it more of a snowball that we couldn't stop if we wanted to?

In the old days you'd be hung if you stole a horse. These days, with full prisons and less capital punishment, hand-slapping is far more common for many serious infractions.

Notice my wording? I said serious. Then I followed it by infractions. Both words include value judgments. Who has the right to make such value judgments? Is there a commonality about morality?

Juicy Aside: News media here in NZ is full of convictions and confessions today,
politicians wanting to announce their own versions before someone digs up
long buried dirt on them. Easier to spin it if you get in first.

The fact that Adam Lambert is openly gay may be what makes some people uncomfortable, but they may have voted for him anyway.

The fact that the politician was big on law & order issues was unfortunate and contradictory. This is life amongst sinners.

God weeps.

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