Monday, August 6, 2012

What have we done?

This morning we continue to hear the news about Sikhs killed in Wisconsin. This while we are still mourning those killed at the midnight showing of Batman. All if the talk seems to be about guns but no one seems to want to go near the other common factor, young white males. While there are always exceptions these killers tend not to be African-American, Asian, Hispanic, or female.
I grew up in what would be called a lower middle class southern white family. My father worked in the textile mill, my mother raised us and a huge number of foster children. We were taught proper use of and respect for my dad's rifle as soon as we were big enough to hold it. while I have been lucky enough to see the world, I hope I never forget that I grew up in Pittsylvania County, Virginia.
As I sit on this morning when I should be writing about the transfiguration, my prayers are filled with another community and another senseless shooting. Sikhs, follower of a 15th century religion from the Punjab region of Asia, most easily identified by the turban, mourn the loss of their loved ones, as well as the family and friends of a police officer critically wounded. The suspect, a 40 year old tattooed white guy. Can it really be merely coincidence?
It is time we, white middle class America, took a hard look at ourselves. In the words from Luke's gospel:
How can you say to your brother, ‘Brother, let me remove that splinter in your eye,' when you do not even notice the wooden beam in your own eye? You hypocrite! Remove the wooden beam from your eye first; then you will see clearly to remove the splinter in your brother’s eye.
We seem to have no shortage of critique for the African-American or Hispanic communities. What is the truth about ourselves that we dare not speak?