What a delight to hear the Prime Minister of Norway say they shall increase democracy, openness in that country and defend the rights of all people … in response to the killing admitted to by Andus Behring Breivik, a self-described right-wing fundamentalist Christian who writes of his hatred of both Muslims and immigrants to his country.
What a change from our business and political leaders, both in Canada and the United States, who use such actions to shut down our democracies, limit our freedoms and fan the politics of hate, fear and war, while siphoning off tax-payer money to so-called security firms and manufacturers of weapons of mass destruction.
We are in a culture war folks and that war is going on within our churches, temples, synagogues and mosques.
It is a war that is being fought for our hearts and minds.
The question is: are we going to allow ourselves to be manipulated by those who care not for life with dignity for all or are we going to actually follow the central teachings of these faiths to love (caritatis) and reach out to those different to us, increasing our understanding of their beliefs and in the process understand our own more deeply?
We can stop this madness.
However, it needs to be us who stop it.
My hope and prayer is that the majority will choose to do this and insist our religious leaders lead on this path in both actions and words.