Today as I was driving home for a quick errand, I saw a guy standing in front of the bank at the center of town holding a sign that said SEEK PEACE AND PURSUE IT. "Well that's nice of him," I thought as I drove by. Peace is a good thing.
Returning to work I had a few minutes left, so I walked some packages over to the post office. Once I got there, I listened as two people in the lobby discussed the guy in front of the bank. This, in itself, was not surprising. I live in a small and highly conservative town, and an event like this is major news.
No, what was surprising is what they were saying.
They were discussing how "there was a time when any hippie protesters would have been run out of town."
The reason I found this surprising was because I assumed my hometown had always been a part of the United States of America, where freedom of expression reigns (or is supposed to, anyway). This is a valid assumption when you consider that Cashmere was incorporated in 1904, which is well after Washington became our 42nd state in 1889.
But I digress...
What really got me going was when the conversation turned bizarre.
They started discussing how things like this were going to become more and more common as more and more people abandoned God.
Not able to contain myself, I simply had to say something...
DAVE: Uhhh... the sign he was holding is a quote from The Bible.
DAVE: The guy you're talking about was holding up a quote from The Bible... it's like a famous Psalm... "seek peace and pursue it."
DAVE: So he hasn't abandoned God, he's actually trying to get people to follow God's Word.
MORON: (laughing) Well I doubt that!!
DAVE: No, it's true. Maybe next time you go to church you can look it up.
The irony of my Buddhism-embracing self knowing The Bible better than many so-called Christians is not lost on me here... I'd just expect that anybody who was so quick to label a person as a godless hippie protester might have at least skimmed The Bible before passing such judgement.
Though, if they actually had studied The Bible, they might have picked up on that whole "judge not lest ye be judged" thing (which isn't actually a demand not to judge, but is instead an edict to not judge unfairly, which is exactly what was happening here).
Hey! I was right!
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Dude, you’re the man.
He is lucky they did not shoot him. Being a hippy and all…… good Christian people are the same the world over.
Hmmm – intriguing isn’t it!! People are so quick to jump to conclusions or state their opinions without actually thinking whether they actually mean what they say or even believe in it. How many people simply nod and say yes just so that they can be in agreement.
Surely, it is more stimulating to get an argument (discussion!) going!
For some reason, this story makes me very upset. I suppose it just shows how uneducated some people are. Uneducated, yet willing to act superior to others…
I still find it odd that Mennonite, Brethren and Quakers are called “Peace Churches” because we’re pacifists.
I mean, if you aren’t a “peace church”… what the heck kind of church ARE you??
It just always seemed funny you had to put the “peace” thing in there when that should be a given!
Sigh. Reminds me of my workplace. We had discussion about capital punishment that ended in a similar fashion. People!
That’s one of my biggest problems with organized religion and those that “practice” it, they never truly know what they preach. Idiots.
Too bad God didn’t plan for us having automatic signs printed on us when we do stupid things. Oh, and we’d need to be able to see the signs ourselves.
That would be cool.
It’s like people who don’t vote yet complain about how the country is being run. Freaks!
I usually assume that anyone who’s crazy enough to just stand around with a sign is automatically quoting the Bible.
I have found that people that proclaim themselves to be “good Christians” are among the most deceitful and intolerant people I know. And yet, they always think they are better than everybody else.
Those jerkwads are why so many people think Christians are ignorant, judgemental rubes. Sounds like those two were more worried about the image of the place in which they live than they were about their fellow man. Ugh!!
Now I’m all riled up for the day and I remember why I quit attending church services. Crap!
I hope they went home and opened their Bibles, only to see how right you were!
I like the people who go to church and then shoot daggers at the young families who have little kids that are too “busy” in the pews. Last time I checked church was supposed to be a place where everyone was welcome and there to share good news. Apparently hypocrites can get in too.
Since when do they take away your religious views when you sign up to be a hippie?
You were right, Dave2, and Psalm 34 is a good one.
Just a few lines below that one is:
The death of the wicked is very evil: and they that hate the just shall be guilty.
Oh I am so glad you said something! I cannot stand it when people do exactly what they did and you just rocked it by bringing in the fact police. I have no idea what is wrong with people who have an issue with “peace” anyway.
you remind me that there are good people in the world every day, dave. thanks for that. 🙂
Wow. I applaud you for saying something. That’s incredible.
You rock for speaking up.
I agree, you rock!
I would hope they went home, looked that up and felt foolish, but somehow I doubt it. I mean, could be they went home and looked it up, but, being a lot more familiar with this kind of mind than I’d like to be, I doubt very much they felt foolish. People start making shit up immediately, even if it means they have to worm their way around logic, to justify behaving or thinking the way they did.
I know that sounds cynical, gah. I’m not generally cynical, but I’m bringing’ it ’round for this occasion.
I have known many Christians who had only the vaguest idea as to the contents of the Bible, while I, the godless heathen, have read it through. I can’t quote chap and verse, but I know the material. Hell, it’s a very old document – it’s worth knowing for the cultural or sociopolitical documentation alone.
I used to think it was weird my non-religious self knew more about saints from art history than my Catholic friends who’d spent lots of time going to church, doing catechism and all that. Heck, they were even in the same humanities class where I picked it up in the first place.
A lot of people just don’t pay attention.
I’m really glad you said something.
Funny how people are so quick to judge. One of my professors last semester was about as liberal as they come (and fully admitted it), yet is a practicing Catholic.
If those guys knew that liberals do indeed go to church and pray to God, their head might explode. Pity, because it’d be a sad mess to clean up.
I LOVE that you had actual facts to prove you were right. I bet after you left, they just lumped you into the same category with the guy with the sign, but really, I’d rather be the sign holder than the judgers.
People are so STUPID. They’re so wrapped up in their own versions of religious zealousness that they don’t realize how ignorant and idiotic they are. Kudos for stepping up and putting them in their place.
Please don’t let a few hypocrites who claim to be Christians ruin you for the rest of us.
Stuff like that drives me crazy (probably because they’re usually talking about driving me out of town), but I never tend to actually say something unless it’s to my face.
Thanks for saying something – I think more people should seek peace so would also have thought the sign was a nice thing. It’s great that you had the juevos to speak up. Not many would, unfortunately.
I’m so glad to have stumbled upon your blog. Wonderful read. And you’re a fan of Flock of Seagulls (sigh… memories). I checked the Stalker tab. Intelligence, wit, good looks – quite stalker-worthy.
Wasn’t Jesus the original hippie?
Whit nailed it. 🙂
That was awesome btw, Dave! Love how they didn’t even believe it! lol!
Amazing how judgemental people can be. One of those tribal things – very deeply ingrained – “us vs. them” – political, religious, racial, whatever – firmly rooted in fear. Amazing (to me anyway) it still has such control over us this late in the game.
Dang! Whit beat me to it.
I was just gonna say that exact same thing.
Way to go Dave. That is so great you speak up for people. I hate the way some people can be so judgemental of others it drives me crazy.
You’ve nailed what most judging conservatives are really like: thinking they know their stuff, in the end, they really don’t. They simply want to follow their internal selfish thoughts and desires.
Good on you for calling them out. And knowing more than they should have.
Becoming informed about any topic seriously inhibits your ability to rant on that topic.
I think you handled that rather well 🙂