Tuesday, April 17, 2007

Don Imus, Virginia Tech and Martin Niemoller!

Don Imus, Virginia Tech and Martin Niemoller!
Kevin Shrum

The thought and speech police are on the way since Don Imus stuck his foot in his mouth all the way up to his kneecap. And now with the events at Virginia Tech, look for more controls to be placed on our lives by those who want to squelch the freedoms of Americans and silence the voice of many, especially the religious voices of America.

What Imus said was despicable – it was simply a reflection of a society bent on crudeness. The best way to censor filth is to follow the ‘turn it off,’ ‘don’t buy it,’ and ‘don’t participate in it’ techniques. What happened at VT was horrible. Enough said. But no amount of gun control can control a crazed man.

We must be aware that giving up our freedoms wholesale is no way to deal with tyrants and the crazed. It’s not just the Rutgers basketball players and the campus of VT that is under siege. What is at stake is our will desire to live as free people. Evil seeks to limit what God has rightly given to us to exercise with responsibility and restraint.

Let me introduce the tainted, redeemed figure of Martin Niemoller to explain my point. Niemoller was a German Lutheran pastor during WWII and who was, at first, sympathetic to the actions of Hitler and the Nazi party. He had been a U-boat captain in WWI and had been supportive of Hitler in the early days. The Nazi press held him up as an example of a model for how to handle the transition to a country controlled by Hitler (Newsweek, 7.10, 1937, p. 32).

But Niemoller quickly changed his mind when he discovered that giving up his precious freedoms for certain protections and comforts was no trade at all. By the time that Niemoller and others awakened to Hitler’s goals it was too late. Niemoller spent the rest of his life redeeming his life from evil. It was Niemoller who wrote the following famous poem.

“First they came for the Communists,
And I didn’t speak up,

Because I wasn’t a Communist.

Then they came for the Jews,
And I didn’t speak up,

Because I wasn’t a Jew.

Then they came for the
And I didn’t speak up,

Because I was a Protestant.

Then they
came for me,

And by that time there was no one
Left to speak for me.”

With the asinine statements of Imus and the crazed gunman of VT, the thought and action police are on their way. But when they come with their ‘good intentions’ they will seek to take away our freedoms in the name of the greater good. And by the time we discover this wicked fact it will be too late and there will be no one to speak for truth and freedom. They will label certain words hate speech, especially speech against sin, muting the voice of Scripture.

Freedom comes with the price of risk. No amount of controls can stop someone from making a stupid comment. And no gun control measure or extreme security techniques can stop the relentless or the crazed.

Providing law enforcement and certain security measures makes sense. But I am afraid that in our emotional reactions to the events of the past several weeks we will end of relinquishing such freedom that when it comes time to speak and act freely there will be no one left to freely speak.

1 comment:

Paw Paw said...

Well said, Kevin.

My parents warned me long ago to be mindful of the slippery slope that our great nation has been on since the 1960's. The purposefully incremental way of taking away our freedoms, employed by the left back then, continues to this day. Take a little here, take a little there and before you know it, they're all gone and we didn't even realize what was happening.

We need people willing to stand up to the boisterous ideologues and be the calming force in their whirlwind of political correctness.

Love you, man!