4.18.2009

A Letter Sent to My Book Club

Dear Book Club,

I just want to assure all of you that I was having a "moment" the other day at book club that we can probably consider an overreaction to the current political climate. I'm better today :). I've been staying home too much lately and getting obsessed with politics. It's not good for me.

I guess, perceived or not, I have always felt that I should just keep my views to myself in order to escape ridicule. The reason I wanted to tell all of you is because in some of the discussions we have about people being oppressed because of their views and ideas (and even religion) I can almost relate. Maybe, and I'd love to know what you think, my perception is not the reality.

I know that you all know me as a good person. A caring person. Maybe even an intelligent person. So why is it that I feel like I can't talk about being a conservative thinker (I even got nervous about it when I wrote on my own blog because I don't want people to be offended)? I'm a person who thinks a smaller government influence is better, that abortions should not be the law of the land based on my assumption that a baby in the belly is a life, that capitalism with right and good regulation is a good thing, that the rich people are not all evil but just driven to succeed (with some exception, of course), that government's role should be less not more so that all people can prosper, that our founding fathers had some good (and maybe God inspired) ideas about how to run a country based on life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness and the constitution is fundamentally good not fundamentally flawed.

Maybe I'm just getting tired of having to hold my tongue in order to not offend someone or bring up a whole discussion that, as you have probably experienced, can get too touchy. I just want to be heard and to be respected for my views. BUT...it doesn't have to be in this book club! I love books, I love discussing books, I love to hear all that each of you has to say about books. I would even say that I feel honored to be a part of this group. I hope that by me having my "moment" that our discussion will not change and that you don't feel uncomfortable with my views now that I've outed some of them.

Respectfully,
Holly

3 comments:

  1. Holly, it is ok to have opinions! Obviously I love expressing mine, as I'm sure you've seen on my blog and on facebook, but it doesn't mean I never get the queasies in my tummy. Sometimes I get really mad, because I'm tired of the assumption that religious=no brain, and I hate seeing good people treated badly by the media, two examples being our Pope and Sarah Palin. It's disgusting! But some people want to believe it's true, so they don't stand up for them. I guess being a Libra makes me care a LOT about fairness. I want people to know that smart, thoughtful, "conservative" people are out there, and to expose them to thoughts not their own, and not their friends'. At least they'll have seen it, that way.
    That being said, I love your blog because it isn't political, like mine. Mine was going to be more friendly, but I can't seem to stay away from politics, partly because it is history in the making. I love yours because you take the simplicity of life and link it what Jesus wants of us. That is a perfect focus for all of us, and I thank you for providing it. I need that reminder!

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  2. Holly, you are hitting the nail right on the head. I agree with you 100 percent. I am also Roman Catholic.

    Much of our problem in this country is that the government and the populace started off disliking and distrusting the Church, and those sentiments remain. Even the majority of our founding fathers were influenced by the Enlightenment. With the exception of the Carroll family, many of the fathers believed that human reason could change what was considered "Truth." The Protestant groups eventually adopted much of what the Enlightenment taught, making them "acceptable." The Church, of course, never relented on a singe issue, adhering instead to the teachings of the Magisterium (read - the Pope and the Vatican). Catholics were and are seen as brainless, programed followers who are beholden to their church before pledging allegiance to the nation. Of course, nothing could be further from the truth. Even a quick glance at Catholic Social Justice teaching will illustrate that the Church believes in supporting the poor, unemployed, addicted, etc. But the Church says we must do this out of a sense of love for our brothers and sisters just as God loves them. This means that the only successful government operated charity would have to be operated by a government that is founded on religious principles. Of course, that is exactly what our government was built on - Judeo-Christian principals! Over the years, The "enlightend" (read - atheists) have begun the process of dismantling that foundation for our government. What is left is a godless sense of responsibility to others, which fizzles out in a sea of selfishness, unchecked by any sense of responsibility to something or someone greater than self.

    I could go on, but you certainly wouldn't want that! As far as your "ranting and raving" goes, it is completely understandable. I am trying to learn to express myself in the language of the Church. This has begun to really uncover the emptiness of modern secular thought on both sides of the political aisle. The church believes in doing the right things for the right reasons. It's a work in progress, though. Sometimes I just have to blurt out what I am thinking. If it wasn't for those times, I would rarely have to apologize to anyone! Hang in there. You are doing fine!

    By the way, there is a difference between being offended and having heard something that I disagree with. The notion of not offending people is an attempt by the "enlightened" to stifle open debate. It is a direct assault on the right to free speech. The "enlightened" really don't believe in free speech, unless dissenting views have been eliminated. Ugh! Here I go again! :)

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  3. Thanks to everyone for your respones to my letter. I did actually send that to my book club! I really like the idea of expressing myself in the language of the Church. I think I need to look into what exactly that language would be. I've always considered myself first a Catholic and then an American. I still find it difficult at times to keep that the priority. It's hard to live in a country where my values are quite different from most around me...even my friends who love Jesus but are not Catholic. I always find myself somewhere in the middle or out the back door. God Bless.

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Thanks for the comment. I really appreciate it!