Posts tagged ‘beliefs’

October 8, 2012

Politics And Friends

by pastortimfowler

Politics Balloons

Politics can really put a strain on relationships. It makes me wonder if we shouldn’t put a bit of thought into what is happening in our politics, or better yet, in our friendships, if we can become so divided over something like an election.
I have really tried to avoid voicing my political opinions very adamantly because I know that it would strain some relationships with some of my friends. It has already cost me one or two Facebook friends, which obviously were not real friends, because I either responded to something they said or they did not like what I said. Sadly, we can allow politics to interfere with friendships when they are rarely why we became friends to begin with.
Have we forgotten that as Americans we all have freedom of speech? It seems as if one side is always trying to make the other side sound as if they are anti-American or even bigoted if their opinion differs. But the beauty of America is that we all have the right to say what we think. Yes, even bigots can voice their opinion and I can’t do anything about it. I can lobby against their cause and I can vote against their candidate, but I cannot stop them from saying what they want to say, and yes, they can call me names too.
Isn’t friendship stronger than politics though? What makes your friendship strong is a relationship. That makes me wonder what kind of relationship we think that we have if an election season and ruin friendships? Facebook friends for the most part are not really friendships. I am talking about people whom we know or at least thought that we knew for some period of time. This precious bond of friendship is supposed to be one of respect and mutual admiration. We are supposed to know more about our friends than what pages they like and what pictures they share on a web-page. We should know what their deep-rooted beliefs are. Do they think that wealth should be redistributed or do they feel like they should be able to keep the money they earn and give to charity as desire? Do they believe that life is a precious gift from God and it begins at conception or do they feel like a woman can do whatever she wants with something that is within her own body? Do they feel like marriage is already defined or needs to be redefined? But do these things really make a friendship?
You know what surprises me? These things are rarely talked about when two friends get together for a lunch or game of cards or to watch a movie. These things are important, but most people don’t meet at political rallies to begin friendships. most friendships begin in school or on the golf course or at a kid’s soccer game. Most friendships are formed with the idea that you like that person for who they are, not what political views they have. And, these friendships should last even when you find out that he is a Republican and you are not or she is a liberal and you are not.
Some of my best friends hold vastly different political views than I do. I have known that for a long time and though they are wrong for disagreeing with me, (haha), we work together, play together, laugh together, cry together, and yes, we attend the same church together. We do this because politics is not the driving force behind our relationship. We can be different and still like each other. We can hold views that are very polarizing in the political world and not let it cause our friendship to suffer. Different is not always wrong and even if it is, how will you ever change someone’s mind if you don’t like them as a person?
America is a beautiful place where people from every walk of life can live together and voice their opinions and still love each other as fellow Americans. We can work together and play together and vote opposite of each other and at the end of the day, still be friends. If you can’t do this, perhaps you should evaluate who you call friends and what a true friend really is. Perhaps you should decide if politics is more important than a friend and if so, be prepared to live a lonely life. Politicians will say whatever it takes to get your vote, a friend will doesn’t care about your vote, whoever it is for, they care about you.

September 12, 2012

Blinded?

by pastortimfowler

Muslim Warung, Mt Batur, Bali

It is time to open our political eyes and put on the glasses of realism when it comes to Muslim Extremists. The US Ambassador to Libya was killed yesterday by Muslim extremists and our news media is talking about the US political system being messed up. This outrages me. What has our politics got to do with a bunch of extremist heathens who kill innocent people because their feelings get hurt. The US needs to wake up before we see another 9-11 type attack happen because we refuse to call the real problem what it is.
I know many Muslims in my town. Our church rented a building to worship in for three years from a Muslim. He was professional, respectful, and peaceful. He was not and is not the enemy. He and those like him are friends and fellow Americans. But we must draw a line of separation and clearly identify the fact that extremists in the Muslim faith are the ones who are killing innocent people, especially Americans and those who are not extremist Muslims. Remember, these same extremists even kill other Muslims who disagree with them. It is time to wake up people.
This is not the fault of Obama, Romney, or even Bush. This has been happening for centuries. Anyone who thinks otherwise is ignorant. This is not about our politics. This is not about news ratings. This is about murder of innocent people and it must be stopped. It is time to take the blinders off and see the real fault of those who are committing murder, not running for office or TV ratings.
Terrorism is a real part of our world. It has become so common that it has become accepted and some have turned it into a “plight of repressed people”. Here is the truth: Repressed people still don’t have the right to kill innocent people. Extremist Muslims are not repressed though, they are separatists. They chose to live outside the civilized world’s view of humanity and decency. They choose to use fear and threats to attempt to change minds and intimidate people to change their ways and beliefs. This reminds me of a quote of a previous president of the USA. Franklin D. Roosevelt said, “The only thing we have to fear, is fear itself.” Americans do not bow to fear. We rise up and unite into the strongest force for good on the face of the planet. We don’t need media or politicians to remind us of the cost of freedom and the right to defend innocent people against terrorism and threats from extremists of any religion, Muslim, Jew, Catholic, Protestant, or atheist.
I believe it is time to take the blinders off or we may end up blinded by having our eyes poked out. Let’s tell the media and politicians to tell the truth and reward that with our loyalty. But when they politicize and twist things for ratings, we need to turn them off, tune them out, and not give them out vote.