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Sunday, July 3, 2011

Art of Civility - Lost forever?

Read this editorial today, just for fun.

I am thinking about the days when someone using the 'F' was looked upon as trashy.

Do you remember that time?

There is a lacking of civility in today's culture and it is wrong to put the kind of derogatory language into the same category as Free Speech. The right to speak your mind and share your opinions is not the right to spew filth over someone you disagree with, or you are angry with - and I object to the idea that telling someone they are a bastard or to f**k off is my right.

Freedom of Speech and freedom of expression means that I cannot be thrown into jail or lose my right to participate in my government because I believe abortion is murder, gay marriage is a false idea, The Eucharist is the Source and Summit of Christian Faith or that the Niners are the greatest football team on the planet.

It means I can vote for the legalization of marijuana and tell people I support that without being stripped of my property or held under house arrest.

But at some point we expanded the concept of Freedom of Speech to include LICENSE in all we do - and Freedom is not License.

Freedom, true freedom, is our absolute right to do what is good and strong and loving and moral - yes, Moral. I know the 'M' word is unpopular but our society, secular or not, has the right to define moral behavior. That is what our laws do - we believe it is immoral for a thug to rip a purse off the arm of an 80 year old lady so we make that action illegal and if the thug gets caught indulging in that particular behavior they are punished.

They do not have the right to behave in a way the society deems to be wrong.

I firmly believe that if an artist or poet or writer wishes to express themselves in a way that is profane or ugly they have the right to do so - and to solicit private funds and to sell their stuff to those who wish to buy it. I do not want it in the hallways of a public school. If I want to go and hear the presentation at a poetry slam, that is my business. I don't want the police to shut down an art gallery or pull books off a shelf. I believe that, in a capitalist society if there is a market for that which I find offensive then let them sell it.

I don't want to support it and I won't buy it, simple as that - kind of like my right to turn off the tv or even get rid of tv if I am disgusted by what is on it.

I do not want to pay taxes for it, I do not want the government to fund it.

If there is a market for something that society deems as being disgusting, then those who want to be a part of that will pay the price. The fact that there seems to be a horrifically large market for child porn, for instance, does not mean there should be child porn. Society has defined that as immoral and illegal - participate at your own risk.

I guess what is amazing to me is that the boundaries of decency are pushed every day and supported by the philosophy of subjectivism - this is my business and I am ok with it so therefore it is my truth and you must honor my truth in order to honor me as a human being. The link between moral relativism and subjectivism is so strong- and I see how I can fall prey to that thinking. It is only by demanding more of myself that I can keep from falling into that moral quagmire: it is not about what is good for ME, it is about what is good for the WHOLE. And yes, my idea of what is good for the whole may differ from yours but that does not mean we cannot come to a reasonable way in which to accommodate both ideas.

I love being an American. I love living in an age where the works of great minds, great thinkers, great saints and great statesmen and women are as close as the click of a button. Last night, Mom and I went down to The Plantation Coffee House to have an iced tea - and had the loveliest discussion with another patron about Eusubius of Cesearia. How blessed am I to live in a place that gives me that kind of freedom?

Thank you, Lord, for my life today. It is rich. It is full. It is challenging.......GO GIANTS.


chimakuni said...

VERY [blessed}

Happy Fourth of July - and let us continue to PRAISE GOD with our lips ... and to thank Him for those who are willing to defend freedom from tyranny!

I also do not like hearing words that heretofore were not ever even thought of being utter by those who had grown up enough to know better.

Tim said...

Dear Leslie,

I work for The Maximus Group, a Catholic communications firm in the Atlanta area. We are working on a July 21 event in Modesto that you may be interested in. Will you please email me at Thank you in advance. I hope to hear from you soon. God Bless,

Tim Lilley
Sr. Writer/Communications Associate
The Maximus Group

Diakonos said...

Without Posey or Sanchez? Let us pray to the Lord...

Leslie K. said...

@ Tim - I just sent you an email...I will be in Steubenville on that day...doggone it.