It usually gets under my skin when I see it.
Someone writes about an issue of social injustice in America and instead of engaging the merits of the issue a pro-life Christian simply responds with the abortion-juke (the pro-life iteration of the omnipresent Jesus-juke). “Why are you so upset about this when millions of babies are being aborted every year?”
The thing is, you can care about more than one issue. My wife has gotten heavily involved in a ministry dealing with human trafficking issues. But I don’t have to choose whether I’m going to be against human trafficking or abortion. I can be against both. I can believe that abortion is a brutal murder of a baby in it’s mother’s womb AND still think that issues of racial justice should be carefully examined and addressed in America.
The comparative outrage argument is vanity because it falsely assumes that one has to choose between caring about and advocating and ministering concerning one or the other. Baloney. Identifying one sin doesn’t justify another or diminish the guilt of those who commit it. So, the comparative outrage argument is one we ought to abandon.
But then a lion gets killed in Zimbabwe.
A dentist paid $50,000 to go big game hunting, lured Cecil the lion out of a game preserve, shot him, beheaded him, and planned (I’m assuming) to add his head to his wall back home.
Before I go on, there are a few things I should probably say.
- I’m not a hunter. Not once in my life. The only thing I’ve ever shot was a fish. I went fishing periodically with a friend in Florida years ago and we would catch gar. They were a menace to the bass, so we would pull out a little pistol Charlie had, shoot them through the head and throw them behind the boat to the gators that generally followed us down the canal. Never gone deer hunting. Never gone duck hunting. Never. Never really wanted to – hunting ain’t my thing.
- I have never owned a gun. There has never been a gun in a home I’ve lived in.
- I’m not anti-gun or anti-hunting, but they just don’t appeal to me. I support the second amendment, but I don’t really have any desire to take advantage of it. I support the fifth amendment too, but I’ve never invoked it either.
- Frankly, I find sport hunting a little creepy. I’m not saying its wrong or sinful, but I’ve watched shows on ESPN where these guys (and some women too) track these beautiful animals, scope them, and then shoot them down. They then laugh and giggle and talk about how beautiful that dead animal is. I don’t get it. Oh, maybe that bison in Custer Park that rammed our Honda Odyssey minivan – maybe I’d have liked to put a bullet into him! But I think the animals are more noble alive than dead. I get my meat behind the counter at Sam’s Club after someone else has cleaned, dressed and butchered it. I do not understand the psychology of the dentist who travels around the world to kill beautiful animals for sport.
- Having said that, I understand there are people who don’t understand my passion for the New York Yankees, so….
People are absolutely outraged about this; no, they’ve become unhinged. Piers Morgan, who passed the point of sanity a long time ago, is about as rabidly anti-gun as one can be. And yet, this lion’s death provoked him to the point that he wrote the following in the Daily Mail.
Instead, I’d like to introduce a new sport – Big Human Hunting.
I will sell tickets for $50,000 to anyone who wants to come with me and track down fat, greedy, selfish, murderous businessmen like Dr Palmer in their natural habit.
We’d lure him out with bait – in his case I suggest the fresh blood of one of his victims would be very effective as it seems to turn him on so much – and once lured, we would all take a bow and fire a few arrows into his limbs to render him incapable of movement.
Then we’d calmly walk over, skin him alive, cut his head from his neck, and took a bunch of photos of us all grinning inanely at his quivering flesh.
I’m not sure that in the USA that would not qualify as a “terroristic threat,” but if someone kills a lion evidently its okay to abandon all pretense of civility and wish to see him tracked down, shot with bow and arrows (at least its not a gun!), skinned alive, beheaded, and then photographed. Maybe Piers Morgan has a future with ISIS. I hear Jihadi John has fled Syria.
- Others have called for him to be extradited to face (supposedly harsh) justice in Zimbabwe.
- Mia Farrow tweeted his address, I presume so that people could harass (and possibly harm) him.
- Other’s have been content to simply use social media to eviscerate him.
But while I’ve not seen his views, I’ve been willing to wager my spleen that Piers Morgan and 95% of the “Justice for Cecil” contingent have barely given a second thought to the Planned Parenthood videos that have demonstrated the brutality and inhumanity of that evil organization. Each time one of those videos is released it becomes harder to avoid comparing Cecile Richards (yes, the Cecil/Cecile coincidence has been observed by many) and her bunch to Mengele and the Nazis. Murdering babies in their mothers’ wombs has been SOP for decades and we might have become used to that until we discovered that they were harvesting baby parts and
selling them for profit using them to “defray costs” for alarming amounts of money. I
Sidelight: Tweet of the week – “Cecil vs Cecile: One is the world’s most vicious predator and the other is a lion.” (Not sure who the original author was but it tickled my funny bone – if it’s okay to laugh about a story this awful.)
The president has gone on the attack, through his press agent, pointing the finger of blame at the people who made the video. It is the time-honored “kill the messenger” tactic. Most of the American press has either ignored the videos or joined the president and the Democrats in honoring and supporting Planned Parenthood and attacking those who made and published the videos.
So, let me make my point. I’m not a big fan of the dentist. I don’t understand him. Evidently he’s had some ethical/legal issues in the past. So I’m not going to try to give him a pass or hand him a Medal of Freedom. I don’t know why he couldn’t take pictures of the lion and put those on his wall. But the fact that people are outraged to the point of calling for the dentist’s blood but have no outrage at all about the killing, mutilating, and marketing of babies and their body parts is a sign of deep moral depravity in America. How sick do we have to be to be upset about a lion’s death but not to be upset about millions of babies dying and being parted out?
I’m not a fan of the comparative outrage tactic, but in this case, it demonstrates something very real: our values are totally messed up; we live in a depraved land.
It shows something else. This land doesn’t just need a new president who has the basic moral decency to oppose abortion, but it needs something far more important. This national depravity should motivate us not primarily to political action (that is important and has its place), but to the pursuit of the Great Commission, to the proclamation of the Gospel of Jesus Christ! It is that gospel that will change minds and hearts and open consciences. It is the gospel that not only saves but transforms.