Tuesday, July 04, 2006

Rage and murder, it's just a kiss away...

The Immaculate Conception, patroness of the United States.

"I heard the news again today..."(Beatles, "A Day in the life of") - The 36th murder in Minneapolis this year. Murderapolis all over again?

I guess it's happening all over the country, crime, rape and murder on the increase. 'They' say it's because so much money and manpower is being diverted by Homeland Security. Really? Remember the Stones' song, "Gimme Shelter"? I loved that song, Merry Clayton did the background vocals and cut her version of it on an album of her own. "Rage and murder, it's just a kiss away, just a kiss away!" That song and "Sympathy for the Devil" were two of their best songs ever. Although at the time - seriously - I tuned out the lyrics of "Sympathy -" but after their disasterous concert at Altamont I listened attentively and it kind of freaked me out.

Lately, I've observed a lot of "attitude", especially in really young black kids. Many people I've spoken to have said the same thing. Many have experienced looks and slurs on the street. Many have said that kids will walk out into the street so that oncoming traffic has to stop while they saunter across, arrogantly starring you down. Why all of this rage? It isn't just black kids. I was at the doctor's one day in Uptown and this group of 'punks' were walking towards me and I sort of stepped aside to let them pass, acknowledged them with a smile - I liked the colors of their hair - and in the process one of them shouldered me off to the side. I had been praying my rosary in my pocket (a habit I copied from the Missionaries of Charity) and therefore I wasn't prepared for what happened until after they passed. I wasn't angry, I just felt bad for the kids that they acted like that. The same with a little black girl who really gave me attitude when she crossed the street while I stopped for her and smiled, allowing her to cross - even though it was in the middle of the block and she should have waited.

So what's the deal? Could it be that in a culture where there is no respect for life, and that legalizes abortion and wants to legalize euthanasia, that respect for others has somehow diminished? That in a culture which liberally contracepts while marriage is distained, yet women continue to bear children out of wedlock and into poverty and drug infested 'homes' - is there something morally wrong? Could the rise of murders and other crimes, as well as indecency, have anything to do with a morality in the later stages of decay, if not the total lack of it (morality), in our country? Whatever! That has all been said before though hasn't it? "We are good people. We are really good people. We really are!" So most people insist. Then why are we chastised so?

"One Nation under - who?"

Anyway - St. John of the Cross in "The Ascent of Mt. Carmel" says some things about chastisement. First he speaks that God is neither pleased to send chastisements, nor is he pleased to be forced to warn of these chastisements through supernatural means. We may deduce from natural reason that certain sins warrant relative chastisements. He writes:

"Providence responds most certainly and justly to what the good or bad causes arising from the sons of man demand. One can know naturally that a particular person or city, will reach such a point that God must respond in conformity with the punishment or reward that cause warrants...

"It is like saying: surely such sins must occasion certain punishments from the most just God. 'each one is punished in, or through, that by which he sins.' [Wis. 11:17]"

Rage and murder - it's just a kiss away.


  1. Don Marco8:35 PM

    We are on the same page! I thought about offering a Votive Mass of the Immaculate Conception today. In the end I celebrated the beautiful Mass "In Time of War" in violet vestments, a sign of penitence. For the Intercessions we used Archbishop Carroll's splendid old prayer from 1791. The important thing is to seek the adorable Face of Christ, pleading mercy and healing light for the world.

  2. dar from wisc.7:27 AM

    Thanks don for your insight on seeking Christ and pleading mercy and healing light for the world. It's always a nice reminder that when people are mean, we should pray for them.

  3. Karen9:13 AM

    Dear Terry,

    I enjoyed your many blogs on Abbey Roads and Rome-ings. Your article on the youth of today especially interested me. I believe these young men and women (and children), suffer from the effects of poverty and a lack of love from two married parents. Too many young people have one parent, or, too many families have more than one father. There is nothing solid about these kids. Their morals and ethics are something out of a cheap "B" violent movie.

    In the play, "Mother Courage and Her Children", by Bertold Brecht, the mother exploits the war for her selfish gains. I distinctly remember the professor making a remark about this, "Grub first, then ethics." In many ways, that's what is happening today. I will do anything I feel like and worry about the consequences some other time, if at all.

    I think everything changed after WWII. All the baby boomers. Mothers and fathers working two jobs in the 70's, no one to come home to after school, and the degree of self esteem plummeting.

    Kruschev remarked during the cold war that Russia would "get us" from the inside. Perhaps they are not now, but something is. We will destroy ourselves from the inside unless we face the facts that teachers cannot teach values, morals and self esteem. It all comes from the home. This is what teenagers face today - there's no one home to teach or be a role model for all of these kids. They have no place to go, no jobs, well, boredorm is a very dangerous thing. It leads to many evils, and it doesn't take much for the devil to irridacate the soul in exchange for something to do. The predator knows how to conquest his victims quite easily. Just remove the boredom and replace it with rudeness, immodesty, drinking, drugs, murder.......it takes the love of God, family, and unconditional love to build the bonds to keep this evil out.

    In the mean time, we must pray for those who are the most vulnerable and ask God that they will outwit the devil by replacing boredom with something constructive. Pray the rosary for these youngsters to develop a healthy sense of self esteem and a safe place to go where they can be appreciated and loved.

    Anyway, that's my thoughts my on this.


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