I made sure that my last post was harder on Christians because I believe that a true change in the conversation needs to start at home. For me, that was the easiest way to start inside and work my way out. Today, I thought that I might start getting to what I feel is the root of the problem. As a result, I’m sure that this one is going to step on some toes.
I wrote a piece on objective truth a while back. I was going to review that for a bit, but this is the internet and it is far easier for you to just click here and go read it, if you haven’t already. That post starts us on the road to what I feel is one of the most significant reasons that we all seem to be at each others throats with a lot of issues: We no longer have a high degree of shared values.
I truly believe that the push for multi-culturalism and our rejection of objective morality has left us without any sort of societal moorings. I don’t want to tie that statement to current issues for examples, because I feel that it might lose some of its weight. Hopefully, by backing us up a few years, I can look at how we arrived at our current situation.
Let’s start with marriage. I’m not one to beat-around-the-bush, so I’ll just get right to stepping on people’s toes. Just about every culture had a high regard for marriage in the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries. Regardless of religion, it was an institution which was not to be entered into lightly. Violations of one’s marriage vows were certainly seen as taboo and often as severe, punishable offenses. It wasn’t just the Judeo-Christian folks who made such a big deal about marriage; it was almost everyone. Then something changed.
I’m not sure if it was the sexual revolution or our changing legal system which led the charge, but somehow we decided to allow the devaluation of the institution of marriage. Adultery went from something that could get you a big, fat, scarlet letter on your chest to something that had any number of excuses. Things not working out or maybe marriage isn’t quite what you thought it would be? Just give up. There is always next time.
Broken marriages have become so commonplace that I’ve even heard jokes made within communities of faith. I used to know a guy from church who joked about how many times he had been married. I’ve got news for that guy. Multiple divorces doesn’t make you funny…it makes you a failure…at a lot of things.
The point, however, is not marriage. It is about whether or not we share values. The simple fact is that we absolutely must have shared values on at least some critical, core issues or there is no way that we will ever live in harmony or peace. As much as it makes some of us uncomfortable, we have to recognize that there is Good and there is Evil. We have to not only understand that these two things exist, but that they are in direct conflict with each other. Then, we have to pick a side and understand that that choice will naturally lead to conflict with those on the other side.
Our media has tried to remove objective morality and shared values from our society. The only values they promote are tolerance and non-judgement, which have been perverted in the way that have been presented to the public. Also, they are poor substitutes for mutual respect and love.
We have been inundated with atrocious, morally destitute entertainment and news for so long that we have lost our sense of Good and Evil, Right and Wrong. I can’t tell you how many times that I have been shocked when an otherwise sane and rational person has demonstrated a working knowledge of the cast of The Jersey Shore or the antics of Miley Cyrus or the family dynamics of the Kardashians. Let’s think about that for a minute. Here are what I consider to be completely reasonable people who have conversant understanding about a group of young people whose moral quandaries and substance abuse antics became the fodder for tabloids. The Kardashians (whose main claim-to-fame is a daughter who had a sex tape released on the internet) have commanded our attention for years, now.
We have lost our minds.
I feel like I need a shower after just thinking about those folks long enough to write about them and the point is not even that the aforementioned people are evil. They are just sad, broken people that have been made into celebrities.
The problem is that we have allowed it to happen. The problem is that we have allowed this drivel to distract us from the real issues. The problem is that we have allowed our moral sense to be degraded because instead of our diversity strengthening the moral conversation, it is being used to dilute it.
We have got to find a way back to where, regardless of our faith or lack thereof, we can unite as a people and agree as to whether something is right or wrong. We have to fix our moral barometers, so that we can once again accurately grasp the difference between good and evil. We have got to remember that in any given situation, there may be a million perspectives…but there is only one truth.