Thursday, February 18, 2016

"Death of Civility"

The sudden death of U.S. Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia is shocking. Not because he died (after all he was no spring chicken) but because of the reaction to his death.

The politicizing of his absence is to be expected, considering the fact it will undoubtedly reshape the 2016 presidential election. We're not referring to that.

And no, we're not surprised at the firestorm of conspiracy theorists in the wake of Scalia's death (the tin-foil hat crowd see a grassy knoll behind every bush).

So what's so shocking? The comments.

You know, the section reserved for opinions after an online article. It's rarely a happy place, but the death of Scalia brought the hard-core, foul-mouthed haters out in droves.

Justice Scalia ("Nino" to his family and friends) was known for his brilliant mind, devout faith, sharp humor, and many decades of service. He was a fierce watchdog of constitutional rights and the leading voice of uncompromising conservatism.

His unwavering stance against abortion, same-sex marriage and gun bans earned him the respect of conservatives, but the contempt (and hate-filled comments) of those who disagreed with him.

Presidential candidate Dr. Ben Carson addressed the 'Comments Section' incivility (to put it mildly) in Saturday's debate: "You go to the Internet Comments section--you cannot go five comments down before people are calling each other all manner of names. Where did that spirit come from in America? It did not come from our Judeo-Christian roots, I can tell you that...there is such a thing as right and wrong."

Jesus warned that "the love of many will grow cold" as the end of the age drew near (Matthew 24:13).

The 'comment section' is no place for the faint of heart, and if what people say under the cloak of anonymity accurately reflects their inner-thought life, some are growing cold indeed. A decent man died Saturday leaving behind a grieving family. But because he was a conservative, the comments left (for his family to read) were particularly vicious, filthy, and downright vile.

Scalia was a staunch advocate of free speech, witty and savagely funny. And while he'd be shocked by the comments after his death, he'd undoubtedly defend to his death our right to comment.

A wise man once said: "God assumed from the beginning that the wise of the world would view Christians as fools...and He has not been disappointed...if I have brought any message today, it is this: Have the courage to have your wisdom regarded as stupidity. Be fools for Christ. And have the courage to suffer the contempt of the sophisticated world." -- Antonin Scalia, U.S. Supreme Court Justice
"A good person produces good things from the treasury of a good heart and an evil person produces evil things from the treasury of an evil heart. What you say flows from what is in your heart."  Luke 6:45

  • The Washington Post: Number of hate groups rose 14% in 2015; year characterized by 'enormous rage'
  • The Daily Mail: Decorated vet attacked in hate crime; teens ask if 'black lives matter' before robbing and brutally beating him
  • CNS News: White House: Pres. Obama will not be attending Scalia funeral due to security footprint 

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