26 July 2012

If you see something, say something

Anyone who lives in New York City and has ridden a bus or train in the last 10 years has heard this announcement. They have read it on signs and advertisements. If you see something, say something. It makes sense. It's about neighbours and neighbourhoods.

This may be why Voula Papachristou has been expelled from the Greek Olympic Team for a racist twitter comment, according to the Associated Press. The website Keep Talking Greece translated the offensive tweet by Papachristou (@papaxristoutj): “With so many Africans in Greece… At least the West Nile mosquitoes will eat home made food!!!”

Papachristou tweeted an apology in English on Wednesday, but it was too late. She's gone.

So is the statue of Penn State icon Joe Paterno. Why? He didn't say anything. He had done no crime in terms of pedophilia, but he had turned a blind eye to the activities of his offsider. Joe Paterno was recently found guilty of concealing information. Wow, guilty for not saying something.

This calls to mind the classic finale of TV's Seinfeld, with all four characters found guilty of not intercepting a crime in progress. They broke the "Good Samaritan" law, not helping a neighbour in need.

Last week we were shocked by James Holmes, the Denver (Aurora) Colorado shooter who planned the shooting for months, to the point where he was receiving packages regularly ahead of the shooting at both his work and home. His home was booby trapped and strewn with trip wires. Yesterday we learned that Holmes sent his notebook to the University of Colorado, where Holmes had been a student until dropping out last month, ABC News reported.
Fox News reported that the notebook was mailed to a specific psychiatrist at the university and that it contained "full details about how he was going to kill people, drawings of what he was going to do in it, and drawings and illustrations of the massacre."

No doctor reported anything. We are scandalized.

So what are you to do? If you have something to say, for goodness' sake, please say something. If you know someone is on their way to oblivion or to what we religionists call a "Christless eternity" how dare we say nothing. We owe them, we owe the world, we owe our Messiah to say something.

The world is scandalized when murders happen in a movie theatre. And rightfully so. I hope you are scandalized when death happens to a neighbour to whom you have not shared the truths of God's love and kindness. Let's tell the world.

The Bible says, "Let the redeemed of the Lord say so!" (Psalm 107.2) and the prophet Ezekiel said it this way, "Hear a word from My mouth (says God) and give them warning from Me. If you give them no warning, nor speak to warn the wicked from his wicked way, to save his life, that same wicked man shall die in his iniquity, but his blood I will require at your hand." (3.17-18) Ezekiel goes on to say, "Yet if you warn the wicked and he does not turn from his wickedness, nor from his wicked way, he shall die in his iniquity, but you have delivered your soul." (3.19) The point however, is not to save your own life, but to save your friend.

Let's be about the saving of people. No statues. No scandals. Just healthy, see something, say something.

2 comments:

Anonymous said...

I also love that scripture and agree with your interpretation of it. We will indeed be held accountable for every idle word that we have expressed. How grave a matter life is. Only the man of sorrow who was acquainted with grief can see us through.

Anonymous said...

I agree that things don't just happen without some history. I agree that if a mother can say that she knows instantly that something aweful has happened that it is her son that has done it, should have done more. I agree that this man was calling for help and that only Y'shua can help for he is the Saviour and Salvation does come from the Jews. Roger