judg’men’tal (adjective) – tending to judge or criticize the conduct of other people.
big’ot (noun) somebody who has very strong opinions, especially on matters of politics, religion or ethnicity, and refuses to accept different views.
There have been only a few occasions in my life where I personally witnessed prejudice to the point that I was literally taken aback. I’m not sure if that is a reflection on the sheltered life I have been afforded or if it is indicative of a callousness to what most likely happens everyday around me but which I am conveniently oblivious. I claim being unaware of bigotry around me as convenient because when you open your eyes to it, when you see it in its naked unabashed vulgarity it is diminishing to the integrity of our humanity. It gives me a sense that I am dirty by association and it disgusts me that I don’t have better tools to combat it, to shake sense into the small minded, insecure and pathetic nature of it all.
Perhaps the most alarming thing about the two incidents that I witnessed Tuesday was my utter sense of ineffectiveness in convincing either perpetrator that their thinking was completely unacceptable. The sense of helplessness this failure evoked in me was one of defeat and rage until I realized that the myopic lack of character I witnessed is most assuredly the exception rather than the rule in this day and age. At least I pray to God that is the case.
Both incidents were brought on as a result of my support for Barack Obama as a candidate for President of these “United” States. I have to wonder if those closest to the campaign are learning as I learned Tuesday that we most likely will see
Self described Christian men, with faces contorted by hatred and anger as they passed judgment on the sincerity of Obama’s religious conviction claimed he was unworthy and despicable because his father was a Muslim. It seems there are people out there that think Obama is a Christian of convenience for his political ambitions to which I wondered how that would make him different from many other politicians. I was asked in the typical neo-con fascist tactic, “Just answer me this one thing. Would you or would you not be willing to vote for a Muslim for president?” I thought it was a joke because the extreme right loves to try to press non-sensical questions when they think they can get you to say something they can hold up for scorn and retribution. I would vote for anybody that demonstrates leadership and shares the hopes I have for this country. I can admit I would not want a person who did not share my faith to be the pastor of the Christian church I attend but that is about the limit to my exclusion of any specific religious belief for any particular endeavor.All of this was just so stupid in my mind. What were we talking about? I would be willing to venture that neither of these judgmental bigots has ever met a Muslim. And where do they get off questioning the faith of another man anyway? Yet the reality of it all was that these men were actually unable to help themselves in their way of thinking. This world has a long way to go before we will ever see the peace that so many of us are longing for.
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