As I type this sentence, the nation has been rocked by news of a mass shooting at the Tree of Life Jewish synagogue in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. Eleven people are dead and six others injured, including four police officers. Forty-six year-old Robert Bowers apparently shouted several anti-Semitic epithets, including “All Jews must die!” before opening fire on the congregation that had gathered for their weekly Shabbat services and a bris. According to FBI officials, Bowers was armed with one assault rifle and three handguns during his bloody shooting spree. As of late Saturday evening, Bowers had been charged with 29 counts of violence and firearms offenses. He also faces “11 counts of of obstruction of exercise of religious beliefs resulting in death; 11 uses of a firearm to commit murder during and in retaliation to a crime of violence,” and numerous other charges.
The Anti-Defamation League released an official statement calling it, “…the deadliest attack on the Jewish community in the history of the United States.”
President Trump and The First Lady both quickly tweeted about the unconscionable act of violence, offering their thoughts, prayers and condolences to the community:
Of course, this all comes on the heels of the pipe bomb scare that occurred a mere few days ago when suspicious packages were sent to The White House, CNN’s New York office building, the home of Barack and Michelle Obama, and the home of Bill and Hillary Clinton, as well as other prominent political figures, placing law enforcement officials on high alert throughout the nation.
And prior to that nonsensical and insane event, there were — as you all know by now — several days of mass rioting and anarchy in which mobs of liberal protestors took to the streets to express their disgust over the nomination of conservative Justice Brett Kavanaugh by literally scratching and clawing at the doors of the Supreme Court.
I won’t even bother ranting about the death threats, harassment, vandalism, or off-color political cartoons as I’ve already provided that commentary at length here on the site and on my official Facebook Page.
Anyway, as you read the news headlines, you may be thinking to yourself, “This is all quite horrifying.” And you would be correct. These acts of unhinged violence are indeed horrific. However, they are not entirely detached from one another. Political brutality seems to be the new normal in America. In fact, it’s reached the point where most of us wake up every day expecting to hear about the latest outbreaks of chaos and turmoil. We flip on our television sets and eagerly tune in to the bumbling idiots on cable news — those well-groomed talking heads who will tell us everything we need (or want) to know and hear. We’ve accepted the current state of our society as it is. It is a sickness —a disease — that has been festering for decades and now it is explicitly condoned and openly encouraged.
But, somehow, things are not right. They are not as they should be. And we know it. Deep down inside, at the core of our beings, in our very souls, we know it. The knowledge of this “wrongness” hangs over America like a dark, foreboding cloud. Should we do something about it? Should we confront it? How? When? By what means? Surely we are not supposed to hate and despise our fellow citizens as much as and as often as we do.
Yet, sadly, this is where we are. At some point, when no one was looking, the middle class of America was swallowed whole by the progressive ideologies of moral nihilism. The vast majority of us have not only rejected God and the founding biblical principles upon which this country was built, but have also denied that there is any meaning or purpose to life in the first place. When this mindset infiltrated the political sphere — as it clearly already has — the result was the formation of violent mobs calling for the destruction of existing social and governmental institutions.
That is what we are seeing play out now across the country. People are no longer interested in having civil discourse or passionate debates about political and social issues. They are, for one reason or another, far more content to physically or verbally attack the other person and be done with it. If this means the destruction of public and private property, then so be it. I suppose it’s just easier to light a car on fire, throw a brick through a window, or beat on the doors of a courtroom while shouting profanities than it is to rub two brain cells together to have a decent conversation over a Chick-fil-A sandwich and some waffle fries. Personally, I think the latter option is more appealing, but that’s just me.
As any mature and rational adult should know, this sort of riotous behavior does not and will not solve anything.
To be clear, it is not only the Democratic Party that is to blame for the heated divisiveness and tension in our country, although their leaders have clearly encouraged some of the physical violence and mob mentality. Many prominent Republican leaders have not only failed to condemn the violence when they had opportunities to do so, but some also have also added to the confusion by claiming moral authorities equivalent to God, or implied that they are speaking on behalf of The Almighty, as Ohio Governor John Kasich recently did on CNN when asked about the caravan of thousands of illegal immigrants currently approaching the border:
Let’s stop putting up walls around ourselves and not understanding the plight, the trouble, and the problems of others. It is not right, and the Lord doesn’t want it. And our people, at their hearts, want to reach out to others. Look at what they do in these storms — they go out and they rescue people they don’t know. They put ‘em in their homes. They feed them. That’s America, not all this garbage and this division, and yelling, and screaming, and hatred on all sides.”
Ah, yes. “…the Lord doesn’t want it.” Perhaps this is true — although there were many sovereign and blessed nations throughout the Bible that were, and still are, protected by walls. (Israel comes to mind.)
So, is something terrible happening to the core of our country? I would argue that much is obvious. What’s clear for now is that this anarchy will never be solved so long as the majority of the American people continue to actively choose violence and nihilism over Absolute Truth and basic decency. And that is indeed a choice.
Also, it would probably help if our political leaders — on both sides of the aisle — would clean up their inflammatory partisan rhetoric and stop giving off the impression that they are miniature gods. We apparently don't tend to react too well to that sort of talk.