We all know that the world is moving down a very dangerous path, and that we must reverse our direction. But so far, the credible and persuasive scientific case hasn’t accomplished that. Sensible economic proposals haven’t halted that direction either. And smart political arguments have yet to reverse our course either. Why? Because we are addicted to fossil fuels. The results are planet-threatening climate change and people-threatening terrorism.
We need conversion. Nothing less. Only our conversion could change our dangerous direction.
Two fundamental things could bring the kind of conversion we need.
The faith community continues to speak loudly and clearly about the moral urgency to address this issue. The only question is whether Congress will listen and finally address the epidemic of violence that plagues our nation.
We have reached that point in the year when the images we are inundated with show off variations on a theme: the Norman Rockwell-esque holiday gathering. They are a testament to the ability of advertising to tug on our heartstrings as the large, joyful family sits down to a table lavishly set with the antique china, candles twinkling, and a feast spread as the Christmas meal in all its glory looms and the joy and generosity of the season is palpable.
Here in Florida, the grocery store chain Publix is as ubiquitous to holiday celebrations as pie. Publix has been a part of our Christmas celebrations for generations and yet this year impromptu runs to the family-owned grocer will simply not be an option for the Reverend Clay Thomas, or for those who stand with him.
Women Rising On Oct. 1 and 2, PBS will air the two-part special Half the Sky. Inspired by Nicholas Kristof and Sheryl WuDunn’s best-selling book of the same name, the film follows the authors through 10 countries to meet people challenging extreme gender inequality and the poverty, trafficking, and violence it perpetuates. pbs.org/independentlens
Rebuking the Gun Empire James E. Atwood is a pastor, avid hunter, and longtime activist against gun violence. In America and Its Guns: A Theological Exposé, he writes thoughtfully about how American gun culture has become a kind of idolatry and how people of faith can—and must—challenge it. Cascade Books
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