The people's voice of reason

Tears & Laughter: Be Ashamed to Tell Others to be Ashamed

Before I launch into my topic this [month], I want to acknowledge what happened in Wilcox County yesterday. A long time, much-loved, retired deputy with the Wilcox County Sheriff’s Department, Deputy Madison “Skip” Nicholson, was killed by a gunman while responding to a domestic-violence call in the Yellow Bluff community.

Chief Deputy Trenton Gulley was also injured, but is expected to recover. The whole county is shrouded today in sadness. This will spill into tomorrow and into the upcoming week and on into the foreseeable future.

This follows the sudden and unexpected death of Camden’s Police Chief, Tyrone Dale, from natural causes in recent weeks, along with the loss of our young and talented editor of the local newspaper, Ethan Van Sice. There are so few of us here. We all know and care for one another. Even people in jail are sad for these losses. We seek a comfort and strength only a higher power can provide.

So with that, I will write about shame.

It seems to be a go-to statement for some people. It may be said, even without thinking. But who in the hell in our world has the right or authority to tell any other person, no matter how pathetic they may be, to be ashamed? I’m absolutely sure it is frequently repeated in homes across the country. And I get that it is an attempt to make the conscience feel convicted and as a result encourage a change of behavior – one way or another. But where we most often see it and hear it is among politicians.

Just [recently] Representative James Clyburn, a Democrat – for what that is worth – was being interviewed and said Senator Joe Manchin, also a Democrat, should be ashamed for not being in favor of the huge social spending bill that many people are against because they think it will push the United States into being a Socialist country. Who is James Clyburn to tell Joe Manchin he should be ashamed…for doing his job? He hasn’t committed some horrible crime or done something reprehensible. He is just being a Senator.

Joe Manchin should never tell James Clyburn to be ashamed of being James Clyburn. But that was not what happened. It was James Clyburn telling Joe Manchin that he, a United States Senator, serving in the Biden economy and working with that cast of comical characters in Congress, should be ashamed. Is not one of the core reasons for all of the many social programs that swoop in and serve as salvation for people is so that they do not have to feel or experience the emotion of shame or embarrassment?

I take it one of the reasons some people cling so tightly to their Bible is because it holds the hope of forgiveness. It allows repentance to take wrongs away as far as east is from the west. So we are not burdened by shame.

And that is not to say that there are not those among us who should be ashamed. There are evil people in the world. I’m not sure Joe Manchin is one of them, but they exist.I guess if we dig around in our pasts we could all come up with something we may regret and feel remorseful about and given any chance would do differently. But nobody has the right to point it out and appoint shame…especially a politician.


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