Christmas is supposed to be a time of joy, a time of giving, of hope, friendship, and renewal. Instead, this year, in the light of the recent tragedy in Connecticut, it is a time filled with the faces of children slaughtered, of hope diminished, and unfathomable pain.
Compounding all of it are the crazies who seem to crawl out of the woodwork every time tragedy strikes, be it natural disaster or man-made horror. Case in point, Tennessee pastor (and I use the term lightly) Sam Morris, whose tiny, homophobic, creationist peabrain has decided that, basically, the shooting was God's judgment for teaching kids evolution and "how to be a homo."
Quite honestly, I'm sick to death of nutjobs who seem to revel in human agony, and use it to support their own twisted, antiquated, and perverted religious views.
Although I am not a proponent of organized religion, I believe in God. I do. Really. However, it seems the God I believe in is Someone vastly different from the one Sam Morris professes to speak for. My God is kind and loving. My God would never use the senseless murder of innocents to punish those he deemed wicked - obviously, since Sam Morris and others of his ilk (including those moronic inbreds at Westboro Baptist) is still walking around with all his parts firmly attached.
And do you know what? Aside from voicing our dissension and outrage at their messages of hate, there's not a damn thing we can do about it. Free speech is a narrow, rocky road, full of potholes and stumbling blocks. Veer from the course, and we risk wandering so far astray that eventually, everyone's voice will be silenced. To protect the freedom to voice our opinions, we must protect all opinions, including those that make our skin crawl. It sucks, but that's sadly the way it is.
That doesn't mean we have to like it, or take it without comment. We need to exercise our own freedom of speech. We need to stand up, to voice our fury at those who use tragedy to further their own twisted agendas. For every sign that's waved with a message of hate, let's wave a hundred in support of tolerance. For every voice raised in intolerance, let 's raise a thousand ringing with acceptance.
This holiday season, while our hearts are still aching from the senseless loss of so many young children and brave teachers, fallen police officers, and others lost to senseless violence, let's silence the hate-mongers by drowning them out with messages of hope.