I've made this point before, and I'll probably continue to make it again, but there does seem to be an awful lot of nastiness out there. You'll recall this thread started yesterday with my link to the BaddaBlog story on Air America's assassination "jokes" about Bush. It continues. . .
I'd meant earlier in the week to draw your attention to this fine column from Stanley Kurtz - on the May issue of Harper's Magazine, article entitled "The Christian Right's War on America" (yawn), but I think I'll piggyback off the post by Veritas, because he makes some good points as well. Chris hits the nail on the head with this comment: "But for some secular liberals, the ends most certainly justify the means."
We seem to be on some kind of theme here. Michelle Malkin exposes the venomous hatred coming from liberals at the news of Laura Ingraham's breast cancer (the medical news on it, thank God, is promising). Some of it was so bad that even fellow breast-cancer sufferer Elizabeth Edwards (wife of John) had to stand up for Laura. A sampling of their comments:
She probably gave it to herself...
I don't pray for Nazis or other Totalitarian Scum
I hope she goes into remission and f*****g chokes to death.
And those, as Michelle points out, were the ones that weren't deleted.
Oh yes, I almost forgot, there were these comments from the lefty blog AmericaBlog:
Hile Pope Ratzinger .....no wonder so many people have left the catholic church....now they can try to strenthen their flock via 3rd world countries....
Well, that explainds the red, black and white robes......what a f***** up world....a Nazi Pope...What can one expect from a filthy Nazi?
the catholic church has always trived on violence - any belief that it is a peaceful church is delusional.
This from a Nazi bastard wearing a dress - and no doubt with a past in child-molesting. Can we say projecting our sexual guilt on others, perhaps?
WHY WHY WHY anyone would belong to this Church is beyond me. Especially if you are gay OR a woman. It's almost like the gay Log Cabin Repubs. But worse.
The only way the Catholic Church will change is for people to wake up and see they are fools for following it or continuing to call themselves Catholic. Surely of the 60 million americans who do - only a handful actually follow it all to a T anyway. WAKE up SHEEPLE!
I guess he doesn't get called Holy Father - he'd prefer Mein Fuhrer.
Now that we have Pope Adolf 1, that should be more clear to everyone.
You can read more if you want, courtesy of TKS at NRO.
What I find interesting about this is that, invariably, when liberals talk about conservatives they usually find some way of working the word "intolerant" into the conversation. But if these comments don't represent a dictionary definition of "intolerance," I don't know what does.
Strike that. The word for this is not intolerant. The word is hate. And these people are filled with hate, consumed with it, using it as the fuel that drives their lives. Just look at the people who were determined to kill Terri Schiavo, who are determined to allow the murder of millions of babies each year. Now, I know some of you will suggest that I'm not helping things along by using such "loaded" terms - but if you understand the natural law, you also understand that these words describe exactly what is going on. To conspire with such anti-natural behavior - there's no other way you can describe it.
How meaningless this is. What a waste of God's gift of life, to spend it this way. I was discussing this with Hadleyblogger Peter at lunch today, and we both agreed that if conservatives ever spoken this way, we'd be condemning it as roundly as we do the liberals. The liberals - or, I should say, some liberals, since it's hard for even me to believe that these comments are representative of all liberals as a whole - have a hard time believing we'd do that. As a matter of fact, I'm sure they're looking through posts like this right now, trying to find our anti-Semitic, homophobic, racist points of view that they know are hidden here somewhere.
I feel, what? Pity? Compassion? Contempt? A little of each, I suppose. Because ultimately we want these people to be saved - we dare to hope that everyone might be saved, even though we know that, through their actions, there are those who will choose to reject that salvation. But what these people have a hard time appreciating is that we really do care. And when they do figure it out, when they realize we're praying for them, they hate us for it.
I don't think there's anything wrong with a good, clean political fight. I've often said I'd much rather have a spirited argument with an intelligent foe than to talk with a dullard who agrees with everything I say. (And I'll beat you to the punch on this - you don't have to be a dullard to agree with me.) But, with very few exceptions, I've always been able to maintain respect and even affection for those people with whom I do have such disagreements, and I'll be so bold as to suggest they feel the same way about me. As I might have stated before, one of the reasons I got out of politics was because I didn't want a political ideology to determine who I could be friends with.
The point is, at the end of the day we're usually able to pack up our disagreements and remain friends. We concede that, for the most part, each of us is speaking from sincere, strongly held viewpoints, and we grant those good intentions.
It is this kind of good will that I see missing in the comments from the people I refer to above. It is this level of discordant conversation, this "in-your-face" attitude, the coarsening of society, that is so discouraging.
Lest you think this is simply a liberal-conservative thing, it's not. For example, you'd be hard-pressed to match some of the venom between neocons and paleocons. Even within the Church, there's plenty of controversy, not just between the orthodox and heterodox, but between the orthodox and the traditionalists (the ones who believe every pope since Pius XII is an anti-pope). As a priest once commented in a homily I heard, you use up so much more energy hating than you do loving. Think of what you could do with all that energy if you put it to use for good.
Some of these people are misled. Some are naive. Some are frustrated, beside themselves, disgusted with everything. Some are probably chronically unhappy, depressed, misanthropic. But you can't deny that some of them are evil, or at least are allowing evil to control their thoughts and actions. Perhaps it's too strong a word to say they're posessed, but there's no question the Devil is having a field day.
We have to keep praying, of course. Jesus told us as much, when He forgave his torturers on the Cross. Perhaps they don't know what they're doing. Maybe they're ignorant of the consequences. Maybe it will be that one last prayer that opens a seam through which God can slip in. If that's the case, we have to keep trying. If we don't, then we'll have to accept some of the blame.