Bill Murchison

The Lenten account of the human plight -- Lent being a Christian season, with all that emphasis on repentance and divine forgiveness -- can give offense to the religious skeptic. But the sneaking feeling that there might be something to the account gets stronger in seasons like this, as opposed to seasons when, every time we roll the dice, they come up seven. Christian proclaimers, it strikes me, rarely make as much as they could of the human-insufficiency point, viewed against the backdrop of History and Events. If, broadly speaking, we're fine, how to explain (just for instance) World War I, World War II, Hitler, Stalin, Mao, racial animosity, outrages, panics, crime, oppression, wrong deeds and advice of every kind?

There's nothing wrong? Tell us another one. Tell us how -- among other things -- we blew a 14,000-plus stock market average. How we lost consciousness of human life, at whatever stage, as a precious gift. Why Darfur? Why the Taliban? Tell us.

One could go on. It might be taken for preaching. Wouldn't want that, would we? It might block views of the "truth" that in a democratic society human values are equal, that no idea (with political exceptions) deserves preference over another idea.

Lent comes just in time, one might be forgiven for supposing politely.

Bill Murchison

Bill Murchison is the former senior columns writer for The Dallas Morning News and author of There's More to Life Than Politics.
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