It’s an old, wise line attributed to many sources and cast in other ways, but memorable to me as often quoted by my husband, an old newspaper hand, as a motto of the Times or the Sunday Times of London.
Right now I’m desperate for truths. I’m posing some questions in hopes that truthful answers might be forthcoming, and I promise to take the time to listen to answers from wherever they come.
I don’t understand what’s happening to my country; I thought I knew it well enough. I look at the results of political surveys and wonder if they were taken in the same native country of mine. I’m suddenly in the minority, and friends I thought I also knew well enough are on the opposite side—friends with whom I shared a long and happy past and now find very little in common.
Like climate change, it didn’t happen overnight—a small crack that in time grew beyond repair. I don’t know when or how it began or where it will end; I only know I cannot absolve myself completely of my own responsibility in the matter.
I guess we all have to pause and look seriously before it becomes too late to ever set things right again.
Until the world stops its crimes against nature, rain and snow will fall, and heat will beat down when and where they shouldn’t. Nature now has to use fire and water in severe ways and deadly amounts to cleanse the environment and put things back in proper balance.
What have we done and are still doing to ourselves? Faiths, womanhood, democratic constitutions that guarantee basic human rights and freedoms, all life itself are being gravely degraded, and few seem to mind; some even find perverse reason to celebrate. How do we cleanse ourselves back to decency and dignity?
Values have been turned upside down. Irreverence is the rule. Cussing has become the standard presidential interjection. Furthermore, we’re being pulled into dark, unchartered waters. It’s bad enough that I can’t see; I also can’t swim.
The president and his congressional cronies are in a mad rush to change the constitution and, with that, the system of government, pronouncing the old ones a failure. They want federalism. Federalism? We don’t even know what kind of animal that is. Do they? If I should sink, I’d desperately prefer not with them.
Surely, there can be nothing wrong with a democratic constitution or the ideas enshrined in it; they should all be basically fine. What’s even surer is they didn’t fail us; we failed them.
It’s not, after all, the constitution that kills, persecutes, tortures, steals, impeaches or pardons. It’s people who do. How then can a new constitution correct that?
And I simply don’t want to be rushed, and especially not by men and women who lead by tyranny of numbers. That’s exactly how this whole wide good world has come to this troubled pass—by living selfishly and fast.
If I have learned anything at all in my long life, it is this: When someone rushes me, I’m about to be had. It’s the perfect situation to be taken off one’s guard. Indeed, I have been conned only twice in my life, and each time I was first rushed. My feathers are ruffled again and my antennas are up. Something seems not going right.
But no amount of rushing can make anything happen that isn’t part of God’s plan. All things happen in God’s good time, anyway. Let’s hope His plan is one of mercy for all of us.