A Cautious Man
December 10, 2004
So this is Christmas
And what have you done?
We just passed the anniversary of the murder of John Lennon, twenty-four years ago. We are also well-underway in the season during which we hear him, in his song, asking us: "And what have you done?" Our answer this year has to be, "Not enough, it turns out." Oh sure, there's a lot of blame going around, and the talk about "values" as a big issue in the recent election. The solution proposed by some is that people who disagree with the current Administration have to "get religion".
Personally, I think the whole thing is a problem of perception, more than anything else. I fail to see any lack of "values" in questioning a broad range of the government's domestic and foreign policies – to the contrary, whether it's the neglect of the needy or the environment at home, or the violations of our country's principles in the mistreatment of prisoners or false justifications for pre-emptive war, one is justified in questioning the "morality" of the path we're being led down. So, I don't think that any new "values" need to be adopted by those who want to change what's happening. Just the opposite, actually – there are perfectly good and fine values which need to be re-stressed and re-emphasized over the next four years, perhaps even more than they were in the election.
As we also hear this time of year, in that same song, "War is over, if you want it." I think that's what everyone wants, but they have to overcome the fear that is encouraged by those who think war is the way to solve our problems. I guess we need to encourage people to take a little "leap of faith"?