1.10.2015

MEGYN KELLY: WHAT’S LEGAL vs WHAT’S RIGHT

She’s the sweetheart of FOX News. Good-looking, smart, funny, fiery; an all-American girl. Host of FOX’s “The Kelly File,” Megyn Kelly. Okay, maybe she has some difficulty with Governor Huckabee’s name. But then, who doesn’t?

On the other hand, Miss Megyn, who I almost always adore, sometimes seems not to hear her guests’ arguments. When they argue in favor of what’s right, she counters with what’s legal. The guest knows what’s legal, but that’s not the guest’s point. A perfect example transpired on Thursday evening’s broadcast. Here’s an excerpt from what Real Clear Politics had to say about it (click to see video of the full interview):

    FOX News' Megyn Kelly went head-to-head with Catholic League President Bill Donohue on her show tonight for controversial comments he made after the terror attack in Paris which left 12 dead.
    ...Donohue wrote “Muslims are right to be angry,” and “It is too bad that [Charlie Hebdo publisher Stephane Charbonnie] didn’t understand the role he played in his tragic death.”
    In a heated battle with Kelly... Donohue argued in favor of “self-censorship.” Citing New York vs. Ferber, Donohue said the ACLU argued child pornography was freedom of speech.    “I would prefer the Madisonian understanding,” Donohue argued, “...Liberty can be lost by the abuse of power but also the abuses of liberty. Self-censorship is the friend of freedom because if we don’t have self-censorship, we’re going to have individuals interpret their rights in extreme fashion.”


Kelly’s argument is essentially that, in matters of expressing one’s opinion, no matter how offensive, The U.S. Constitution guarantees freedom of speech trumps calls for self-restraint and common sense. A simplistic argument! Methinks the lass’s lawyerly schooling overly influences her sense on matters of what’s legal versus what’s right. In fact, Bill O’Reilly has often tried to get Megyn to see this in her many appearances on his show.

Yes, we have the Constitutionally guaranteed right to stand on a soap box in the middle of a gang-ridden neighborhood and mock passers-by. Yes, we may, legally. But would you do it? Why not? The self-censorship Bill Donohue was trying to get across to your viewers? Common sense? Perhaps Megyn would rush to sue the passers-by for landing us in the hospital. Sure, her case might have a legal leg to stand on. But is it right?

How different is this from Charlie Hebdo’s mocking the religious icon of followers who vow to avenge him, many of whom are all around you in Paris? Certainly there are more intelligent and safer ways to make your points. What purpose does this serve? I don’t buy Megyn’s malarky about how “courageous” this is, either. It’s been done many times through the centuries by satirists who are trying to bring attention not so much to the cause as to themselves. Mark Twain and Will Rogers were masters. But there is not much good humor to be found when adolescent “satire” results in the killing of so many.

And, incidentally, Megyn, if you are soooo infatuated by this unfettered freedom of speech thing, why do you not support those who demonstrate and holler awful things at the funerals of our fallen soldiers? Picking and choosing what we think the First Amendment means makes us tea leaf readers of The Constitution.


Just because the law says we may do something, doesn’t mean we should do it. Bill Donohue is absolutely right. If you could at least cede his point, you wouldn’t give up one iota of your right to express your opinions. Only your urge to say provocative things which put you in the fleeting spotlight of attention but which serve no good purpose.

And that, dear Megyn, is my Constitutionally protected opinion.

1.06.2015

CAN YOU SERVE TWO MASTERS?

“No man can serve two masters: for either he will hate the one, and love the other; or else he will hold to the one, and despise the other. Ye cannot serve God and mammon.” ~Matthew 6:24

Mammon is usually taken to mean material wealth or greed, sometimes personified as one of the Princes of Hell.

Does this mean that wealthy people cannot serve God? Is everyone on Fortune’s list of The World’s Wealthiest People among the Princes and Princesses of Hell?

Well, maybe not every one.

Mammon isn’t simply financial wealth. Whenever someone’s hunger for riches or power or fame or anything consumes him to the exclusion of his feelings for humanity, he has dropped into the realm of the Princes. But it’s not just obsession with wealth per se which consumes man. It’s anything which robs man of his essential goodness. Obsession with gambling, sports, sex, drugs, the idolization of celebrities and celebrity itself, politics, and so many of the other things which tempt us today – all of these things, when turned from “interests” to obsession are a pox on our houses. Wrath, greed, sloth, pride, lust, envy, and gluttony are called the seven deadly sins. In every day’s unseemly news, we are treated to at least two or three of the seven, oftentimes from those we may have held in high regard. 

Certainly there are those with great wealth who are able to control their primordial urges, but one must admit it is difficult to think of many wealthy celebrities or politicians who do not believe their own public relations. Which of them can claim they are innocent of “a proud look,” or “a lying tongue,” or hands which hurt others, or “a heart which devises wicked plots,” or “running swiftly into mischief,” or “sowing discord among his brethren?”

Of course we unwashed are no saintly lot either. But Princely status conveys, at least in the Prince’s mind, free stay-out-of-jail tickets, and exemption from life’s normal mores. How rare is humility in wealth. 

Even Popes, bless their sacred hearts, may easily fall under the devil’s spell. Wearing humility on your gold-trimmed sleeve is the price of admission to the princely club. Painting yourself with cosmetic humility while accepting the extraordinary status of this singular office is an odd contradiction. Perhaps popes are forgiven because their followers believe he was chosen to do God’s work.

But what exactly is “God’s work?” If one chooses not to serve mammon, how does he serve God? We are told everything we do is to be done “as for the Lord rather than for men” (Col. 3:23). In faithfully doing our jobs, caring for our homes and families, or meeting needs in the church or community, we are doing God’s work.

Again turning to Matthew (20:28) we learn one of Jesus’ admonitions (and a darn good one): Whoever wants to become great among you must be your servant, and whoever wants to be first must be your slave...” So we do God’s work by serving others. Now there’s a new concept for Washington, DC.

Well, one needn’t be a billionaire to do all these things. So, much more is expected of the wealthy among us because to them much more has been given. However, “much more” can be either much more good or much more not so good. Are the super-wealthy who support control of global population growth through sterilization and abortion initiatives, or controlling the curriculum of the nation’s public schools, or supporting unscientific green causes, doing God’s work? How can they be? Using their wealth to coerce others to adopt their beliefs shows some of the wealthiest are playing God, not doing His work. Are you listening Bill and Melinda Gates, George Soros and the Princely Club? If what one does with Solomon’s wealth is any test of character, this bunch ought to look in the mirror and ask their reflections who it is they are serving.

Do such Princes of wealth feel some vague sense of disquiet, urging them to make their mark in history, no matter how black it may be, because they must believe, in their most inner sanctum, that despite all their hard work and obsession, it is not goodness but avarice which brought them Princeliness?

Worry not, oh Princes... in spite of what we rabble might think we would do with great wealth, few of us would be better at being rich than you are. But it sure would be nice to be put to the test.