Controlling language to eliminate evil is just wrong

Posted August 8, 2013 at 10:18 am

by William Cripe Sr.

I am not alarmist; except when there is something for which an alarm should be sounded. In the recent past, those who make decisions for us increasingly focus on symptomatic solutions to the major issues facing our country. In the process, they are ignoring the problems. In the words of Jesus, “You blind guides, who strain out a gnat and swallow a camel!” No, Jesus wasn’t addressing politicians, but he was calling out self-appointed leaders in the community who had become experts in resorting to symbolism over substance.

After the shootings in Arizona the pundits and politicians have been furiously swatting at gnats. An all out assault by problem-solvers on the “left” have their banana clips loaded, firing in full-auto at anything that can be remotely associated with those on the “right.”

If liberal Arizona Sheriff, and pontificator-in-chief–Clarence Dupnik–was king of the forest, every talk radio host and conservative television pundit with whom he disagreed would be off the air. In Dupnik’s words, they get paid millions of dollars for “inflaming the public, purveying hate against the government” and using phrases like “keeping them in the cross hairs.” Cause and effect is never so dizzyingly spun in circles as when elucidated by someone under the delusion of their own agenda.

When CNN host John King and a guest were discussing the mayoral candidacy of Rahm Emmanuel, his guest, a personal friend, used the same scurrilous phrase noted by Sheriff Dupnik. King’s strained conscience compelled him to apologize to viewers saying, “Before we go to break, I want to make a quick point. We were having a discussion about the Chicago mayoral race. My friend Andy Shaw used the term ‘in the crosshairs’ in talking about the candidates… Andy is a good friend, he’s covered politics for a long time, but we’re trying to get away from that kind of language.” Seriously?

The tragedy in Arizona was clearly perpetrated by a man with a history of murderous delusions and mental deficiencies. Never-the-less, it is asserted that “dangerous language” incites such behavior and must be curtailed.

The spoken word can be powerful, no surprise there. Through it ideas–both good and bad, civil and uncivil–are conveyed to all who hear or read. But no matter how much control of the written and spoken word that issues forth, no amount of curtailment will eliminate misunderstanding, or misapplication, and no lists of “approved” vocabulary will remedy the wicked intent of someone’s heart. Perhaps that is why when God wanted to redeem mankind, He didn’t merely give us letters on a page, but rather, in the words of the apostle, “…the Word became flesh and dwelt among us.” (John 1:14)

When God intruded on human history, he came not as a verbal theory or plan. He came as a sentient being revealing the very heart and mind of God, to be seen and experienced in real-time not merely described on a page. As a tangible, observable life, misunderstanding, or misapplication of words–even inspired words–was minimized. All who are confronted by both the written word and Living Word have a clear choice of honoring him as God or patronizing him as something less.

So words are important; they are gifts through which we can express the deepest thoughts and feelings of our heart. To infringe on that gift with a series of non-sequiturs by those groping for soul-deep answers whose consciences are informed by the superficial banalities of their own creation is to plunge us even deeper into the amoral abyss from which such answers spawn.

“Real AnswersTM” furnished courtesy of The Amy Foundation Internet Syndicate. To contact the author or The Amy Foundation, write or E-mail to: P. O. Box 16091, Lansing, MI 48901-6091;