Biden's Speech

lunamoth

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I also heard Joseph Biden's speech at the DNC. It was about what I expect at such rallies, a lot of pumping up the friendly crowd.

One thing caught my interest though. He spoke a lot about his family (which I think is great, he obviously has a wonderful family and has gone through some challenges), and his mother is still alive and was present at the convention. Neat.

During his speech he talked about the values he learned from his parents and told about how one day a boy at school hit him, and he went home and told his mother. And his mother told him to go right back out and bloody the kid's nose, so he could walk down the street the next day. I thought it was an interesting story, and his mom was nodding in agreement as he said this. And I was kind of nodding my head along with it too, the idea to stand up to bullies and not let them think you're a wuss.

But, I wonder how well this goes with the Christian ideal, to not return evil for evil, but to return evil with good.

What else could Joe have done besides gone out and hit the other boy?

And, would we want our leaders to use this same kind of response when we get hit?
 
I also heard Joseph Biden's speech at the DNC. It was about what I expect at such rallies, a lot of pumping up the friendly crowd.

One thing caught my interest though. He spoke a lot about his family (which I think is great, he obviously has a wonderful family and has gone through some challenges), and his mother is still alive and was present at the convention. Neat.

During his speech he talked about the values he learned from his parents and told about how one day a boy at school hit him, and he went home and told his mother. And his mother told him to go right back out and bloody the kid's nose, so he could walk down the street the next day. I thought it was an interesting story, and his mom was nodding in agreement as he said this. And I was kind of nodding my head along with it too, the idea to stand up to bullies and not let them think you're a wuss.

But, I wonder how well this goes with the Christian ideal, to not return evil for evil, but to return evil with good.

What else could Joe have done besides gone out and hit the other boy?

And, would we want our leaders to use this same kind of response when we get hit?
When my brother got into a fight (got blind sided actually), he refused to fight at school, and everyone was laughing at him. Naturally he came home mortified. I looked at my mom and dad, then said, "we're going to his house Pat, and you will finish this." My parents approved. So we went to the kid's house and Pat knocked on the door. There was no father, but the oldest brother looked at Pat, then me, nodded his head and said to his kid brother, "Get out here and take your ass whipping".

While they beat the hell out of each other on the front lawn, the brother and I stood and watched. He said, "you family has honor." I replied, "so does yours".

"Thank you" was all he said.

Sometimes one has to fight, for all to realize their worth.
 
Hi Luna

But, I wonder how well this goes with the Christian ideal, to not return evil for evil, but to return evil with good.

What makes you think that Christianity celebrates cowardice?
 
She does not. Her question I think is "where to draw the line"...

Yes, I wanted her to explain her views since this idea of turning the other cheek is the source of much misunderstanding.
 
Hi Q and Nick,

The principle in question is this, from yesteday's epistle:

Romans 12 said:
9Love must be sincere. Hate what is evil; cling to what is good. 10Be devoted to one another in brotherly love. Honor one another above yourselves. 11Never be lacking in zeal, but keep your spiritual fervor, serving the Lord. 12Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer. 13Share with God's people who are in need. Practice hospitality.

14Bless those who persecute you; bless and do not curse. 15Rejoice with those who rejoice; mourn with those who mourn. 16Live in harmony with one another. Do not be proud, but be willing to associate with people of low position.[c] Do not be conceited.

17Do not repay anyone evil for evil. Be careful to do what is right in the eyes of everybody. 18If it is possible, as far as it depends on you, live at peace with everyone. 19Do not take revenge, my friends, but leave room for God's wrath, for it is written: "It is mine to avenge; I will repay,"[d]says the Lord. 20On the contrary:
"If your enemy is hungry, feed him;
if he is thirsty, give him something to drink.
In doing this, you will heap burning coals on his head."[e] 21Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good.

Where did I say anything about cowardice? :confused: I think overcoming evil with good takes great courage.
 
I agree, Luna. I think people mistake forgiveness, compassion, and turning the other cheek for cowardice. In fact, it often takes much courage to have restraint. The more the natural inclination is to fight and defend, the more courage and self-control it takes to act out of goodness and love.

That said, I think there is a line between assertiveness and aggressiveness.

It's a tough line to walk.
 
Hi Q and Nick,

The principle in question is this, from yesteday's epistle:



Where did I say anything about cowardice? :confused: I think overcoming evil with good takes great courage.

Hi Luna

But defining good and evil is where we get into trouble. If the New Testament is seen through secular eyes it speaks of what to do. If seen through what I believe to be its real transcendent intent, then we have to see good and evil in relation to what we are in relation to re-birth.

If a person doesn't protect what is necessary to protect because of cowardice, it is easy to rationalize by saying they are religious. But if we are attached to our fears, the cowardice it produces only inhibits the greater meaning and lying about it leads one further into escapism and away from the intent of the teaching.

However, if a person with their eyes opened begins to see that it is meaningless and there is nothing of importance to defend, to be consumed with anger is something he wishes to outgrow. Then he doesn't justify retaliation with anger.

Turning the other cheek is just such a Christian exercise. A person sees how their egotism was provoked so offers the other cheek as a learning experience for self knowledge; so as to experience how we lose our presence: our faith.

Something may be good or bad by external societal standards and yet be the opposite from the inner transcendent perspective. The "appearance" of good or evil is not necessarily the same as the inner objective reality of good and evil which is the essential Christian concern
 
Good points Nick, and there's much there for me to agree with.

I don't know how I would know another's internal motivations unless they tell me, and even then.... But actions have consequences, and I think we each are able to make choices that matter. Whether non-retaliation takes place out of cowardice or high princple, the end result is less violence.

That said, I'm not a strict pacifist. Perhaps I don't have enough courage? But, at the end of the day I think self-defense is necessary, and as murky as the whole thing is, like D. Bonhoffer, I think there would come a time when I would choose acts of aggression if I were convinced that it was necessary. Now, the whole matter of discerning whether it is necessary...that's the problem, isn't it?
 
Good points Nick, and there's much there for me to agree with.

I don't know how I would know another's internal motivations unless they tell me, and even then.... But actions have consequences, and I think we each are able to make choices that matter. Whether non-retaliation takes place out of cowardice or high princple, the end result is less violence.

That said, I'm not a strict pacifist. Perhaps I don't have enough courage? But, at the end of the day I think self-defense is necessary, and as murky as the whole thing is, like D. Bonhoffer, I think there would come a time when I would choose acts of aggression if I were convinced that it was necessary. Now, the whole matter of discerning whether it is necessary...that's the problem, isn't it?

Hi Luna

Once again Simone Weil puts the question without any PC frills

"If Mr. Gandhi can protect his sister from rape through non-violent means, then I will be a pacifist." Simone Weil

We return to Jesus" arguement with the Pharisees. Jesus spoke of inner quality while the pharisees influenced by appearance. Simone lays it on the line. It isn't foolish pride or vanity that protects a woman from rape but a genuine concern for a loved one. There is nothing wrong with this in either the secular or transcendent perspectives. The fact that we so often allow it by looking the other way shows how little we are capable of the ideals of either.
 
"If Mr. Gandhi can protect his sister from rape through non-violent means, then I will be a pacifist." Simone Weil

I presume this is figurative, though?
 
I agree, Luna. I think people mistake forgiveness, compassion, and turning the other cheek for cowardice. In fact, it often takes much courage to have restraint. The more the natural inclination is to fight and defend, the more courage and self-control it takes to act out of goodness and love.

That said, I think there is a line between assertiveness and aggressiveness.

It's a tough line to walk.
In the world of evil and good, evil will win, unless good is very very careful...
 
There is a fine line between protecting yourself and senseless revenge. If someone attacks you, you have to defend yourself and your property. Gandhi's philosophy has no moral basis in my view. Plus Gandhi was a hypocrite but thats a different topic.
 
It could also be the time when Biden grew up.

Honestly, he's not all that much older than I am, & we grew up in a different time than you sprouts. Punishment for screwing up was usually swift & corporal. There were no "time outs" or trying to get the kids to examine their motives for clubbing the neighbor's kid. You beat on him/her, & there were few consequences; the kid smacked you around in return (or got an older sibling to hand out retribution), or one of the kid's parents called yours & complained, which was far worse. Then your parent probably smacked you, then dragged you to the kid's house & made you apologize. That gave your victim the right to brag around the playground that you were forced to apologize, so your life was miserable for a few days.

Or it could have been a defense mechanism against a neighborhood bully: prove you'll stand up to him & he'll pick on someone else next time.
 
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