Although I've been a journalist for more than 20 years, I am in no way a “news junkie.” I seldom watch TV news, nor do I listen to news on the radio (except the traffic report when I’m in the car). I read newspapers sparingly—that is to say, selectively. And of course, I have been trained to pick out the bias in all reporting (yes, it’s there; believe me, some more so than others!).
Most who do watch, read, and listen to mainstream news (and entertainment) media will no doubt tell you that the tendencies in today’s culture are to tolerate everyone’s point of view, celebrate (whatever the hell that means) everyone’s lifestyle, and crusade for what you believe in—i.e. speak your mind.
Undeniably you’ll travel a smoother road as long as your point of view, your crusade, and your speech tows that cultural line: The one painted so stealthily through our social conscience by the media.
So you should join the overwhelming majority (if media tendentiousness is to be believed) of Americans who:
• Tolerate casual sex, infanticide, and animal worship.
• Celebrate homosexuality, bisexuality, and nature worship.
• Speak out against all outdated ideals, such as theism and patriotism.
Then you’d be well on your way to conforming to the contemporary norm. You’d be solidly in line to becoming a secular humanist. (Sounds great doesn't it—Secular humanist? It’s one of those hip phrases that pretty much means whatever the hell you want it to mean. Stalin and Hitler would both have loved it!)
Not that I was ever seriously tempted to trust media predisposition to their vision of the new American society, but I had my faith physically and spiritually reinforced this Independence Day at the parade in Pitman, New Jersey.
As a Christian, I've always been taught that Faith, Hope, and Charity are the three cardinal virtues upon which true humanism, if you will, is based. Those three facets of our uniquely human nature were obvious the morning of July 4th all along Broadway in Pitman.
What we celebrated that day stood out as contingent after contingent passed in review:
• Diverse church groups professing their faith—most musically—without demeaning those whose point of view may differ from that of their own.
• Diverse patriotic groups—military units past and present, Boy, Girl and Cub scouts, Masonic lodge, First Responders, and elected officials from the state and locals levels.
• Community service organizations who crusade all through the year for their particular cause to benefit their fellow human.
And all along the route that hot and humid day, families, couples, teens, preteens, old soldiers, young parents, and plain ol’, everyday Americans, smiled, applauded, and enjoyed their country as it passed in review.
I realized that morning that this was the real America—the one I lived in. The one that the entertainment industry ceaselessly tells us is no longer relevant. The one that the media tells us has gone the way of the dinosaur. The one that academia tells us is corrupt and in need of replacement.
We’re still here. We’re still the bedrock. We still serve. We still have faith. We still hope. We still espouse charity.
We tolerate those who don’t share our point of view, and ask only for reciprocation.
We celebrate our heritage and worship as per our constitutionally mandated choice.
And we speak our minds, so thank you for listening.
The Gloucester County Community Church was just one of the symbols of true American Independence that marched in Pitman, New Jersey on the 4th of July.