Friday, June 17, 2022

In Context: Home Training

After Senators ask questions, they would do well to listen to the answers given.

By his own account, Senator Durbin recently asked a group of young people from “gun-infested neighborhoods” in Chicago, “Tell me what I need to know as a U.S. Senator about what it means to grow up in your neighborhood.”

One young man said: “Senator, we need home training.” Asked what he meant, he elaborated, “We need parents to tell us what is right and wrong, to tell us what to do. There are no rules. The only rules I find are the rules of the gang's on the street. I know what their rules are, but I don't know what the rules are in terms of my own life.
Filtering that response through his own experience, the Senator was near incredulous that anyone could suffer from a lack of rules. He then ran the comment through one of his party's favorite filters: “Some of it reflects parents who are facing poverty, who are struggling to make ends meet.”

For some people, there's no understanding an issue outside of money. He reasoned, “Some are working two jobs just to get enough money to keep food on the table. They can't be at home and nurturing and guiding these young people as much as they should because they are struggling from paycheck to paycheck.” To him, the problem is money, and the solution is (taxpayer) money.

The young man has a better understanding of the issue than the Senator. The issue is moral: right and wrong. Rules keep us away from wrong; freedom is the ability to do right. Right is right and wrong is wrong for the poor. Right is right and wrong is wrong for the rich. Money may be a struggle at times, but money doesn't make right.

The Senator asked “what it means to grow up in your neighborhood,” and then concluded, “what life is like for too many kids in places around America” is “gun violence” and thus “the importance of doing something.” The need of which that young man spoke goes way beyond how people use or misuse firearms.

The something that Congress needs to do is stop displacing fathers and mothers from their children. The something parents need to do is not just nurture and guide, but teach right and wrong, according to the Word of God. That's essential no matter how many jobs or how much income parents have.

Father, we thank You for the understanding and clearly spoken truth from the young Chicago man to Senator Durbin. We ask You to open the ears of our leaders to the truth, to clear away filters, grids, and worldviews that are obscuring their hearing the truth You are sending them. Take away the spiritual blindness. Raise up that young man and others to speak Your truth and insist on Your eternal truth.

“You shall love the LORD your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your strength. And these words which I command you today shall be in your heart. You shall teach them diligently to your children, and shall talk of them when you sit in your house, when you walk by the way, when you lie down, and when you rise up.” (Deuteronomy 6:5-7)

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