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From Crazy to Bizarre

Politicians often say crazy things, but last week New Mexico Governor Lujan Grisham crossed the line—from crazy to bizarre! She brazenly kicked the Constitution to the curb. She wasn’t the first and she won’t be the last, but she was the most brash.

After issuing a ban on carrying guns in the Albuquerque area, she said, “No constitutional right in my view, including my oath [of office], is intended to be absolute.”

Does she really believe the 13th Amendment to the Constitution abolishing slavery in the United States is not absolute? Does she really suppose the 15th Amendment granting blacks the right to vote is not absolute? Does she really mean the 5th Amendment—which guarantees that a person charged with a capital crime cannot be deprived of life without the due process of law—is not absolute?

Does she really think her oath of office is not absolute? That is unmistakably what she said. She presumes that she may disregard her oath of office (to defend and protect the Constitution), since, in her opinion, “no Constitutional right…is absolute.” That is terrifying—especially if you are black.

Apparently, Lujan Grisham thinks that as governor, she may, at her own discretion, usurp the authority of the Constitution. Folks, this is the very definition of insurrection. Websters Dictionary defines insurrection as: “an act or instance of revolting against civil authority or an established government.” We gave King George the boot 247 years ago replacing him with the U.S. Constitution. Apparently, we now have a modern tyrant-in-training who wants to supplant the Constitution.

However, the problem sinks much deeper than just insurrection. Her statement unmistakably mirrors how our society views absolutes in general.

Modern culture values “what works” over all else. If it stopped there, we might call it pragmatism. However, it mutates further. What our culture really means is “what works for Me.” That descends from pragmatism into the mire of narcissism. You often hear young people refer to it as “My truth.” But then it spirals even lower into primal narcissism: “what works for me—today.” In other words, “I want, what I want, when I want it.”

Our culture fixates on such short-term outcomes. Even in the Church we often hear the feel-good statement, “God just wants me to be happy,” which is frequently used to justify primal narcissism. We foolishly imagine that a well-intentioned end necessarily justifies the means. Therefore, you may shove virtually anything aside (including the Constitution) if you are pursuing the “correct outcome.” Stalin believed that. Pol Pot believed that. Castro believed that. Mao believed that. Hitler believed that. They all believed the end justified the means. Apparently, that is also what Governor Lujan Grisham believes. Absolutes be damned!

Sadly, the disease pierces even deeper—down to our very souls. If I don’t believe God exists, why would I suppose moral absolutes exist? If I don’t judge God as relevant, why would I consider moral absolutes relevant? Without God, absolutes wither to virtual fairytales. All that remains issurvival of the fittest.” And now we have arrived at the unsolvable riddle: how do you start with “survival of the fittest,” where the fit survive and the weak die, and then conclude you must “Love your neighbor,” or even “Be kind?” How do you deduce that violence (including gun violence) is morally wrong?

Our twisted view of God is our core problem—both in Western culture and as individuals. It is Governor Lujan Grisham’s bent notion of God, not her miserable view of the Constitution, that is the fundamental malady.

I applaud the governor’s instinctive empathy for those families whose children were murdered. I assume her intentions are good. But good intentions often pave the road to a land few of us wish to ever visit. She is profoundly confused. She thinks guns are killing children. In truth, it is people who believe God is irrelevant—the God who said, “Thou shalt not murder.” Deeming God irrelevant removes any moral obligation to respect the lives of others—obligation being the operative word.

Is it mere coincidence that as our belief in God as a culture continues to devolve that gun violence conversely soars? The upsurge in violence is largely the consequence of our muddled view of God.

If we continue to teach schoolchildren that God is irrelevant, we will never rid ourselves of the dark specter of ever encroaching violence. Until we place God back at the center of the cultural conversation the attacks on our children and the Constitution will most assuredly escalate.

What’s the solution? YOU are the solution. Only You can bring God back into the conversation:

in your home, your neighborhood, and your community. The choice is simple. The choice is yours.

God is the issue—in every issue.

© Brad Bright 2023, All rights reserved.

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