Tuesday, December 16, 2003

Merry Christmas, friends!

Well, first, the big news for me: My time in the corporate gulag is over! Oh, free at last . . . free at last . . . thank God Almighty, I'm free at last!

All righty, down to business. So, the biggest news in politics right now is the capture of Saddam Hussein. Don't get me wrong, I'm glad that he's behind bars now (so to speak), but I must say that I'd rather him dead than captured. Perhaps I should explain.

With Saddam now a prisoner, the entire issue of Iraq is going to become far more complicated. The question I'm surprised nobody has asked yet is, how do we know it's him and not one of his many look-alikes? I mean, it was my first question. In any case, let's assume it is him. The first thing we'll get settled is, how shall we try him? Whose courts? The Iraqi courts? A UN tribunal (which is a scary enough prospect alone)? I keep hearing pundits ask whether he will get a fair trial, but what I wonder is, what would a fair trial be for a man of such reputation? He very brazenly admits to violating human rights we didn't even know we have. It's well documented that he's a monster, and he's proud for it. What would be a fair trial? And then what? Will we make a martyr of him and execute him? Will we just let him sit in a prison cell for the rest of his life? Would he still be dangerous as a prisoner? Even if he couldn't get messages out, he'd still be a very powerful symbol to those who saw him as a "glorious Arab leader." Ugh.

And even better, will we see him become a liberal poster child? Will an execution be condemned as barbaric and cruel? Will his imprisonment be seen as bullying from the US? "Poor Saddam, all of his rights taken away, such a misunderstood Arab leader. The bad, bad Bushes just wanted his oil. What did he ever do to anyone?" Already, some hollywood knuckleheads have said that Bush should be on trial instead of Saddam. I can't wait for the Democratic candidates to start spinning this one. At least they had the courtesy to say something nice about it, even if some of the comments were double-edged compliments. John Kerry even kept it clean!

Yah, Kerry . . . hoo boy. Is he pandering to the younger crowd, or is he just not thinking? Using the naughty words about your opponent does not look good to the public. I gotta be honest, these guys scare me. Let's take Dean for an example. He has been saying on countless occasions that he wants to "take back America" from radical conservatives and religious nuts (a paraphrase, but on target). If anyone who claims that they're a Christian votes for him, they either deny their own faith or show their own ignorance. Why would you vote for someone who openly disdains your beliefs?

Well, enough politics. Here's an interesting question. Let's say you know a man who is the major breadwinner for his family. He receives an unexpected injury in the form of several fingers being lost in an accident at work. While worker compensation does something to help, this family now has a crisis on its hands. At first you want to help, but then you find out he's a white supremicist. We're talkin' full package here, with KKK membership card and swastika tattoo. Do you still help him?

This is the situation my mother's employer faces. One of their employees, though an ideological outcast, is experiencing a great need. Personally, I say the company should help them all the same. Yes, some of the black and jewish employees are fuming at the possibility of this man receiving aid, but this isn't just about him. The aid is to come in the form of money for the family, and clothing and toys for his children. It shows a greater spirit of compassion, charity, and love to help those who would hate you (or whom you hate, I guess). Jesus did say, "Love your enemies, and pray for those who persecute you." Besides, those children should be helped, whether or not their father holds disdainful views.

But then, that's me. The issue isn't so black and white. The company may receive some nasty public backlash for helping out a man with such a perspective. What do you think? What would you do?

Well, that's all for this update. Just remember folks, the world may not like to talk about it, but there's a reason we celebrate this time of year. Even if it's not the real date, even if it's roots are impure, even if it's transformed into something vulgar and obscene, Christmas should still be about celebrating the greatest act of love ever. Let us take captive every thought and make it subject to Christ. Remember that when it all starts to seem overwhelming.

Merry Christmas!


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