With the recent mass shooting out in California, we are certain to have a whole new flurry of discussions on gun control, bullying, anti-depressants, and the role of government. Brace yourselves, it’ll be a fun ride on the moral relativism express. Sadly, these families are in the midst of grieving, and yet because of the high profile nature of this crime it will become a topic that is discussed publicly for quite a while. I, however, would like to take this occasion and ask some questions out loud . . . and answer them the way our murky minded morality likely would:
“Well, because, you know, they hurt someone else.”
“Why is hurting someone else wrong?”
“Well, it’s like we’re all humans and have rights and stuff.”
“Why do humans have rights . . . and um, stuff? Oh, and where do those rights come from?”
“We’re all individuals and each individual has the freedom to decide for themselves and so no one should infringe upon their right to live their life the way they want to.”
“So . . . you didn’t really answer the question, but I’ll take your answer anyway. Didn’t the shooter have a right to live life the way he wanted to, so why should you pass judgement upon his individual right to make the decisions he wants? Maybe he was born that way? We shouldn’t discriminate against people that can’t change who they are, right?”
“Well, but everyone knows that murder is wrong. You can live your life the way you want as long as it doesn’t hurt anyone else.”
“Ok, we’ve been here before, but who decides what is hurtful to someone else? Isn’t that a little narrow-minded of you to determine that shooting someone is hurtful to that person . . . maybe they were consenting adults? Oh, and you still haven’t answered me . . . one, why is it wrong to hurt someone else, and two, where do these supposed “rights” come from? We might be here awhile.”
Our culture is in the tumble drier of post-modern thought and doesn’t know which way is up, or if there even is an up. The train of thought is such that it frowns upon mass murder, but cannot conceive (pun intended) how someone could be against a woman’s right to contraceptives (meaning mass murder of infants on a national scale). It says what’s right for you is right for you, what’s right for me is right for me, so long as what you do doesn’t hurt or infringe upon another.
We must force the discussion to that fateful one word question, “Why?” It is moral relativism’s kryptonite. Why is murder wrong? Who decided it should be wrong? Why should the line of right and wrong be at the intersection of if it hurts someone else? Why shouldn’t it be an inch this way or a foot that way? Why should marriage even be defined at all? Can’t 15 people all love each other, why should we limit it to just two? Or, a question I recently read that someone else so adroitly raised, why should the age of consent be 18 . . . why not 17, 13, 6, 2?
Why indeed . . . and the jello just won’t stay put.
Oh, and we must not make mere morality our aim . . . we must see that at the bottom of all the questions is a glorious Answer, known as the Triune God of the Scriptures. But that would necessitate a whole other series of questions, which I will get into some other time!