Tag Archives: blasphemy

Entitlement

So many topics to blog about and so little time to do it in. I apologize to any readers I have out there for any delay between my opinions and the news.

 

Recently three Filipinos were caught and convicted of being drug mules in China and were sentenced to death. Naturally there was an uproar in our country and a demand given to the Chinese government for the commutation of the death sentence. We even sent our vice-president to negotiate with the Chinese over the issue.

 

First off, if we really wanted to help our innocent countrymen, wouldn’t we be better off sending our best lawyers who are versed in Chinese jurisprudence to appeal their cases? I understand that there were overwhelming evidence against them. Still if we believe in them then maybe we could argue that the drugs were planted? Maybe they were framed? Or it was not their bag and it was just an unhappy coincidence? If they are innocent why send a negotiator to beg for favor when we can send our best lawyers to fight for their freedom?

 

Of course the whole argument is only valid if they are indeed innocent. Which we knew that they were not. We knew they were guilty of the crime and yet we are still angry at the Chinese government for convicting them. We still ask for leniency knowing full well that they broke the law. What arrogance we as a people have. Are we some sort of exalted country, whose citizens are somehow immune to the laws of the nations we visit? It’s a wonder that any nations would welcome us into their borders if we are.

 

I wonder how we would react if a fictional foreigner, lets call him Daniel Smith, came into our country and violated our laws. He then gets caught and convicted. Then asks his mother country to intervene and either commute the sentence or totally exonerate him for it. Would we smile and give way, I wonder? Or would we fight and complain and stress that he broke the laws of our country, hurt our people, and must be punished for it. Why do we think the Chinese should react differently than we would and have? Do we believe that we are inherently better than them? So much so that we believe our citizens have partial or total immunity from laws in places they visit while they have none here? Why should China’s own citizens be punished more for committing the same crimes that ours have? In their own country no less.

 

We then take the low road. Offering snide comments only the small fish are being caught while the big ones are let free. Insinuating bias against our countrymen and implying that they should be set free. Did the Chinese do something wrong in arresting the minions? Were they not supposed to catch the “small fish” while at the same time building a case against the bigger ones? Think of the consequences of the suggestion. What would prevent people from becoming drug mules if there was no punishment involved? What would motivate them to stay in regular law abiding jobs, if they can get so much more pay as drug minions. At no risk to themselves to boot. Would not the kingpins organization prosper at this? They would have so many applicants that they can take the best people and put them to work for the cartel. Whether we like it or not catching the drug mules is part and parcel of going after the kingpins.

 

The whole thing is just disappointing. I have long thought that we have a false sense of entitlement buried in our national consciousness which makes me expect this type of reaction. It probably has something to do with our successes in people power or some other historical occurrence. What is truly disappointing is that not one person had the courage to tell the popular opinion that it might be wrong. It might just be acting like a spoiled brat. Instead you have Binay, Roxas, and the president….. our glorious leader, bending over backward to try and arrange clemency. It is just so disheartening. How can we expect meaningful change with leaders such as these?

 

There is nothing wrong with attempting to help our fellow countrymen. But help them in such a way that shows other countries that we respect them as well. Nations, like people, interact with each other with the expectation of mutual benefit. Remove that from the equation and no nation will want to deal with us again. Like I send earlier. Send in the best lawyers. Prove that they are blameless. But… but… if they truly have wronged then they must bear the consequences. It is what we would demand others do.

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What Would Jesus Do?

So I was flipping thru channels the other day and came upon an old-ish movie: “I Now Pronounce you Chuck and Larry”; a comedy by Adam Sandler (who I must say is one of the best comedians out there). It revolves around two straight guys getting a same-sex marriage to attain the rights of a conventional marriage. And that’s when I began to think. Why is it we don’t let gay people marry? I mean, aren’t they people too? Why should marriage just be between a man and a woman, why not between two men or even 2 women (which my male brain finds extremely hot)?

There are plenty of reasons why we ban same-sex marriage but the main one is that the church says its wrong. Its in the bible somewhere that man should only be married with women. That makes it wrong for the church and therefore makes it automatically banal, period; which is why many countries have never adopted it.

As I watched Chuck and Larry living together, I thought to myself: “doesn’t it go against the very grain of Christianity though, to have a law against same-sex marriage?” I can already hear the angry mob sharpening pitchforks and preparing burning torches but hear me out first.

If you accept the bible at face value you will see that Jesus was an all-powerful being, able to change reality at a whim. He was able to travel across terrain, feed thousands at a moment’s notice, rise from the dead…basically anything Superman could do. And then some.

Now with all that power what does Jesus do? In the numerous instances he is confronted with evildoers; people who want to stone a prostitute, pharisees who try to trap him, even disciples who end up betraying him, does he ever go: “Wait, you guys want to stone the girl?” *snap* “Now ya don’t.” “Whoa! Pharisees want to kill me?” *wiggle nose* “Now you all love me!”

He doesn’t.

What does he do instead? He TELLS people they are wrong. He convinces them that the things they are doing are not according to what his father’s wishes are and explains the consequences of following the wrong path (i.e. Hell). Yes there is a threat, a very heavy one; eternal damnation BUT there is never a blanket ban of “NO you cannot sin”. The threat doesn’t even apply in this life, it’s carried out after you die.

Placing a ban on same-sex marriage is like forcing people to OBEY the bible. Sinners should they so choose, should be free to keep sinning. Preach all you want, tell them why they are wrong, but don’t force them to obey. Even Jesus didn’t do that. Of course we shouldn’t force churches to accept them either as clergy should also have the freedom to accept the values they want to embrace; and if it would be up to anyone it should be up to the government to recognize same sex marriage.

I can hear you already. “Well since we can’t force people to be good and follow the bible, why should we penalize other biblical sins like say, murder? Let’s have everyone free to be a sinner!”. The important thing to remember when comparing something like murder to same-sex marriage is that murder is an exercise of free will that ends up universally hurting somebody else. This applies to stealing and other similar crimes, which is why we have laws about them to live safely. We ban them in order to live peaceful, productive lives; not because a holy book tells us to do so.

The next question people commonly ask is “but doesn’t same sex marriage hurt society’s moral fiber?”. Well the answer to that is. Maybe. I know that many people genuinely believe same sex marriage hurts other people as much as murder or stealing does and those people do deserve to make their case but the the decision on the types of marriages we allow should be based on this “it-hurts-society” debate, not on the dictates of a holy book.

Well, I hope this article quelled the angry mob somewhat though remnants are probably still forming up right as I type (luckily I live in a condo so they still have a ways to climb up). So before  base jump to safety out the window let me leave you with some final words. What would Jesus do? The next time the issue of banning same-sex marriage is brought up at least ask yourself. WWJD. What. Would. Jesus. Do?

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