There is so much good in the worst of us,
And so much bad in the best of us
That it ill behooves any of us
To find fault with the rest of us. - Anonymous
I must confess that I dislike controversy. I can tolerate it in others, but I realize dislike being controversial.
I think the reason is that I know that when i am most controversial, I stand as much chance as anyone of being wrong.
I don't even agree with myself some of the time.
I also know that when I criticize anyone I am often just as guilty of the same sins in other contexts. I know that there is a measure of good in me and I believe it is Jesus within me. I also know that there is plenty of not-so-good in me and I am totally responsible for that.
The other problem is that the moment one takes a position about anything, people jump to all sorts of conclusions and start associating you with positions you did not even address.
"Everyone who thinks this way about that thinks that way about the other and holds this view about thus and so and is a died in the wool you know what."
As absurd as that sounds, it is how we think. Take away our neat little boxes that have been constructed in our ideology factories and we feel naked, exposed, and lost in a world of ideas.
Our solution is to get in our boxes and force others into theirs and start pulling out our labels and along with those labels, characterizing this one as 100% good and the other as 100% bad.
Most of our parents and grandparents knew better than to do that.
There used to be a graciousness, courtesy, and gentility in America that I long to see again. People thought the best of each other. They had patience with human foibles. They made allowances for the weaknesses of their fellow human beings.
Or am I idealizing the past?
Whether I am or not, it is the kind of future I desire to see and the kind of present I want to work on.
In the meantime, I need to work on my reluctance to being controversial. My good friends will like me no matter what I think or write.