Skip to main content

I’m Right and You’re an Idiot

 Dear Friends,    I’m Right and You’re an Idiot    7/20/17
  The political left and right are saying and thinking this about each other these days. Thus we find ourselves paralyzed stuck in gridlock not talking to each other.  There’s a wall between us.

 James Haggan’s book by this name seeks to face this dilemma head on as he draws on the ideas of 22 others one in each chapter.  He interviews most of them.
Each is very deeply concerned for our life together. They include Pope Francis, Thich Nhat Hanh, Dali Lama, Karen Armstrong, and Noam Chomsky.

Some of the wisdom Haggan reaped from them is things like “rather than highlighting our differences, we   should be working toward finding common ground.”  “We need to speak the truth but not to punish the other.” “We need to have respect for the other and always keeping in mind that the other might be right and we might be wrong, be open.”  “Self-righteous attitudes get in the way of good dialogue.” “To be persuasive we must appeal to people’s values and speak from a moral and an emotional position, rather than more data and statistics.”  “Focus on what really matters to people.” “Conversation should be to encourage participation not to crush the opposition.” “We need to regain the conviction we need each other.” “Speaking from the heart, with frankness, ethical conviction and reasonableness, allows people to connect.”

 I think both left and right need to incorporate these ideas into their thinking and conversation.  Coming from the progressive left I know the left needs them. Tearing down the wall is of utmost importance for us all.

 Pray I can work these ideas into my dialogs at the Bureau County Fair 8/23-8/27.
 Shalom, to you,


Popular posts from this blog

A Temper Tantrum

Dear friends: A Temper Tantrum On a shopping trip to Aldi’s I noticed a mother with a girl who was two and a boy who was one sitting together in her cart.. The boy was having a temper tantrum. I know how embarrassing that can be. Besides she was just beginning to shop. So I thought maybe I could help settle him down. So I went over and tried to talk to him. But he would have nothing to do with me. So I just started talking to his sister. “How old are you? What’s your name? How old is your brother? . “What is his name? She replied “Noah.” Hearing his name the boy started to quiet down and pay attention. After some more question and answers the kids and I shook hands and said goodbye. Then we both did our shopping. We passed each other several times. The kids would say “Hi” and wave each time we saw each other. Then as we went through the checkout the mother remarked, “Thank you so much, what is your name?” the kids waved saying “Goodby…

Outside the Box

Dear Friends,       Outside the Box I am here to share about making peace with Isis nonviolently. I came to this in my quiet time when I first heard of Isis. My response was, “I’m a pacifist so I prayed, “Lord, they are such bad people the only thing I know to do is get rid of them. Bomb them.” I suppose Jesus’ disciples, and many people today like me, might have had a similar response.
So I prayed, “Lord, I’m a pacifist. Show me Jesus’ way, there must be a better way.”Lo and behold I just happened to be reading pages in the book The Powers that Be where Walter Wink says “for every conflict there is a nonviolent answer” I prayed, “Lord, I don’t believe it, show me.” Then what came to me was we need first to understand what creates Isis support, why they hate us, what makes people join these terrorists, and to find a good solution. What if you went home tonight and your house looked like this?

(I pass out this picture of homes bombed by drones) And your family was killed by a US drone? Wo…


Queridos amigos,                                             Separaciones
Asistí a un mitin en Chicago donde 6,000 se reunieron para mantener a las familias unidas.
Pienso qué pasaría si mi Andy y Emily se vieran obligados a separarse de sus hijos 3 años, 1 año y 11 meses. ¿Hay alguna ley que sea adecuada para que eso suceda?

¿Puede un creyente justificar la separación familiar a la luz de la Biblia?
 Levítico 19: 33-34 y 24:22 - Cuando el extranjero reside contigo en tu tierra, no debes oprimir al extranjero. El extranjero que reside con usted será para usted como ciudadano entre usted; Amarás al extranjero como a ti mismo, porque extranjeros fuiste en la tierra de Egipto. Yo soy el Señor tu Dios ".
Deuteronomio 24: 17-18 - "No debes privar a un extranjero residente ... de justicia".
O el llamado de Jesús a "amar a todos"

En el mitin tuve una conversación de 20 minutos en español con una familia donde los padres eran indocumentados y sus hijos 1 y 14 fueron d…