Here is another in my “Serious” series.
"Simple Dove" visitors
Jesus often taught us lessons from the natural world. “Behold, I send you forth as sheep in the midst of wolves. Be ye therefore wise as serpents and simple as doves.” (Mt. 10:16) But let us not allow anyone to silence us with the words “simple (harmless) as doves” so that we forget we must also be “wise as serpents.”
Or how about amphibians? In the natural world, being nearly invisible can make you safer. See the little guy looking out at you?
But today I don’t mean physical invisibility; I mean: are you invisible in the world you live in? I’ll bet a lot of nice people have a vague sense that they are. They and their family and friends seem to be pretty hard to find anywhere in this culture. The first step in the takeover of a country is to make the opposition seem invisible.
See him now, with the yellow eye? He was trying to be invisible, but I nearly stepped on him! I wouldn’t have hurt him deliberately. But I want to do this series of postings on a certain “faction” in our world who are acting as though they are the dominant majority and we are in their way — and they would step on us.
The first step in the takeover is to make their enemy invisible.
That’s “my” Irving Park Road. I had a large world to grow up in on the west side of Chicago. I wrote about growing up next to O’Hare Air Base in a previous post. My world was large because there were so many different kinds of people in it There were different degrees of happiness and difficulties, of peace or of troubles, different family sizes, origins, languages. Being the only child of two working parents, as long as I obeyed their simple rules, I was free to move about in my world. I must have had my own “Spruce Tunnel” in those days. I spent a lot of time up in those trees on Lawrence Ave., to observe and ponder things. Here are two observations I remember thinking about:
Random observation #1– My Mom belonged to the Book of the Month Club. Wonderful! Except I noticed I wasn’t allowed to read some of those books. She would usually just accept whatever selection they sent to her each month, she read it, and told me I wasn’t old enough to read it. She was right. I read them all, and they weren’t for children. They pushed the boundaries of morality and decency in a monthly parade of sex, violence, and scandal.
Now why would a book club send these kind of books to my nice “ordinary” Mom and to her friends like her?
Where were the books about real, everyday people from all parts of the world, with interesting bits of drama?
Random observation #2 – Television was new and fun. But as my childhood years progressed, I noticed more and more of the programming was becoming less and less like the ordinary people I saw, of all shapes and sizes, races and religions; ordinary, decent people. But, just like the books, the television was showing us a parade of tortured, twisted, immoral, irreverent, clueless people who were not at all like people we knew.
Oh, we kids saw a lot in real life. These times were not paradise. We saw robberies and beatings, domestic violence, drunkenness. We knew of prostitution, extortion, and murder in our mafia-ridden area. I saw my first pistol in school, in a classmate’s desk. He had just robbed our local drugstore during the noon hour. This was Chicago, remember. We were familiar with the Al Capone-Richard Daley-“Obama” types that ruled over other people. But here’s the thing: they didn’t live in all the ordinary neighborhoods; they were in American culture, but they did not characterize it.
Some pundit of the past called television “a vast wasteland.” And slowly, ordinary Americans, hot dogs, mom, apple pie, and flag-waving, became invisible to the pop culture portrayed in the media.
Here’s a better look at the little guy:
When he’s out in the open, he is less likely to get stepped on. He’d better croak loudly – and be “wise as a serpent.”