Maybe I should change the Sunday Morning Sermon to the Late Sunday,,,err,,,Mondayish Sermon.
Antonin Gregory Scalia died yesterday. He leaves his wife, Maureen and nine children. He leaves many friends including Ruth Ginsburg and others. He was a man I can imagine wearing his house slippers and sitting in his recliner. I can imagine he was a granddad, doting and bouncing the grandbabies on his knee. With his rich intellect, I would have loved to have been a fly on the wall as he read or told stories to his grandbabies. Today, someone is explaining to those grandbabies how he won’t be around to read those stories anymore. I don’t know his pet name around the house but, I bet that name will be uttered with a tinge of pain today.
I bet you have memories of a jolly old grandpa.
I also bet you are hearing less about grandpa and more about “but” today. The but you have been hearing is the dehumanizing but. But, Senator McConnell won’t confirm the President’s appointee…But, liberals will now run the court…But, Citizens United will be surely struck down…But, this presidential candidate said this and that presidential candidate said that.
I am not sure if he was Jesus or a monster but, the way people are talking, he surely wasn’t a granddaddy who would be missed.
We seem to have reached a point where we won’t even wait till the body is cold. We especially can’t wait when it comes to politics. First, we dehumanize those who disagree with us. They are insane, unpatriotic, evil and my favorite, a Fascist. In case you have been sleeping for the last 60 years, Fascist is code for Nazis and Hitler. That code, I believe, is used today as nonchalantly as we empty the litter box. We compare those unspeakable acts 60 years ago to, well, anything we can’t like. I can tell you for sure, the people who are capable of that kind of unspeakable act do not have grandbabies and will never be missed.
Have you ever dehumanized someone you disagree with? I know I have.
Antonin did everything society asked of him and when called to serve, he obliged. To be sure, I disagreed with him on almost everything. Instead of hating his sin however, I should hate my own. I should hate the sin which allows me to justify any means to his marginalized end. At his end, he was a public servant who did the best job he could. His decisions were informed by a life experience which is not mine to validate. His character, family or legacy should never have to suffer assassination for his supposed transgressions. This good man, grandpa and public servant’s memory should only be met with my gratitude.
How many people wont serve us because we can’t agreeably disagree?
It is long past time we quit listening to those drunk with power who appeal to our lesser angels. We know when the ends justify the means, we only really lose ourselves. The man or woman demonized, dehumanized in this political parlor game is in the mirror. I should deny those lesser angels because they are mine. When I subscribe to the us and them culture it may be immediately gratifying but, it is not working. Good people with a heart for public service are suffering. In my silence, they suffer at my hands. I, we, are better than that.
By Supreme_Court_US_2009.jpg: Steve Petteway, Staff Photographer of the Supreme Court (evidence that he took it is here (LinkedIn profile here U.S. Federal Government. Supreme Court archivist's office confirms that this is photo number 2009-03882 and that a permanent catalog number will be assigned.derivative work: Wehwalt (talk) - Supreme_Court_US_2009.jpg, Public Domain, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=9771037