Sunday, 21 July 2013

The elephant in the room - he's still there...

In the present US big news story of the murder trial of George Zimmerman, for the fatal shooting of 17-year-old black American Trayvon Martin, I presume no competence to either endorse or contradict the verdict of the jury. They have listened to the evidence, examined it, and pronounced.

I note the post-trial comments of one juror, who says that both young men made mistakes, and that they both failed to lower the pressure and walk away when they could have done.

Looking at various accounts, I note various records of Martin's life, detailing a growing number of signs that he was heading off the rails. To repeat - that does not indicate what actually happened on the night he was shot, one way or the other. But there is a prima facie case that his being in the wrong place, at the wrong time, involved in the wrong thing (and at the risk of being boring, that does not decide one way or the other the question of whether he was unlawfully killed or not, or what Zimmerman's motives were or weren't) was not a random event. Regardless of the ethics of the final bullet, there's enough in there to say that this was a young man who needed direction and authority, and who wasn't getting it - and that had he, then he could very likely still be alive today. Read his Wikipedia page: When I see a pattern like that, I know now, from the Bible, to hone in on one question - where was that young man's father? And the answer always comes back the same - he wasn't there. Trayvon Martin grew up largely with a mother, and without a father - up until the point where his mother could no longer handle him.

And then this leads to the observation which comes up again and again in so many contemporary tragedies. Whilst the politicians on either side are all making their political speeches for their political purposes... once again, they're all ignoring the elephant in the room. The pattern in Trayvon's life is not random - it's predictable. Trayvon Martin grew up largely, as a disproportionate number of young black American men do, mostly without a father. He needed a father to guide him, and to provide strong paternal love and discipline. He didn't get it. If he had, then he might not have been in the wrong place, at the wrong time, with an unwisely aggressive attitude.

The Bible teaches us that the family is the foundation of a strong, stable society. But you can't both have that, and so-called "free love", radical individualism, abortion-as-contraception, and reject role relationships. It's not just one racial group, but an entire society - politicians preaching these new values, and people readily and gladly accepting them - that has welcomed the elephant into the room. One of the appalling results of direction-less, angry young men who don't know how to walk away from trouble when it crosses their path. The elephant in the room is still there, and sadly, many more will be trampled underfoot by him in the months and years to come. Don't buy the politicians' lies - that with cleverer economics and more the state providing more and more of its care, that we can make up for the deficiencies brought in by the sexual revolution. We can't - without repentance and revival, the whole society must eventually and inevitably perish. What a need there is at this time for true Christians to shine a light and show that it can be very different.

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