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NEWS FROM THE CENTER FRIDAY DIGEST September 17 - But What If We Just.....

I was reading a thread on another post having to do with addressing students by their new chosen names or pronouns. I think it's probably true to say that pronouns are much more problematic than names, as names have always been able to cross certain lines. Who can forget the boy named Sue? Pronouns though strike at the heart of reality. Some have laughably hid behind the concept of "pronoun hospitality." Now, I suppose, we might say that if a madman says that he is Abraham Lincoln, we might address him as Mr. President, and advise him not to go to the theater. But with pronouns, it's different, for we are dealing with a different kind of madness that has less to do with the person who claims a different identity than it does with the society that is enforcing it.

If you look at gender dysphoria, you see a sea change, as if overnight. When Ryan T. Anderson wrote his book "When Harry Met Sally" the phenomenon was still largely one that has forever been a part of society. But now, as evidenced in Abigail Shrier's "Irreversible Damage," it is now a matter of a social contagion, promoted by the secular left and for reasons that have nothing to do with gender dysphoria, and everything to do with Intersectionality and the silencing of dissent.

We can not afford to be naive. On this thread, folks were offering alternatives, including the use of nicknames and last names. That might indeed work if we were in a normal political situation in which compromise was sought. But it is not about finding a win-win situation; it is about conformity, the silencing of other opinions, and now even forcing people to speak a lie, to say that 2 + 2 = 5. That is to say, we have crossed the line from authoritarianism to totalitarianism, to the world of Orwell, and to every collectivist, Marxist society. While here or there, someone might find a way out, a way to navigate these tricky waters, there is no true escape, for that is not what this is all about. We assume that the secular left thinks like we do, that they want a happy solution for all. I remember when Governor Mitch Daniels, a good fellow all around, called for a truce in the culture war. In this he was naive. It wasn't as if our side had been fighting anyway. But the Left does not want peace, only domination, the peace that comes from total victory, and the silencing of all who seek the truth.

Now, we are getting to the nub of the matter. Since the Secular Left, that is collectivism, is a lie, as is the rainbow pride and critical theory, which are its children, the truth simply may not be spoken. The dark cannot stand the light, and a naked emperor's clothes must not be discussed in any way but fiction. Many are rightfully afraid. Many others, I think, figure that they can ride it out, sail quietly into a retirement that is pleasant as they watch the future fall apart.

But the other thing on this thread that struck me was the call for Christians to love others, which strikes me again as a kind of blindness. John Kluge, the teacher fired for not using incorrect pronouns, showed more love than all the other teachers put together. You want love? Then meet Barronelle Stutzman and Jack Phillips. They actually love people, because they love Christ first, and because they love Christ first, they are not willing to lie to others, to themselves or to God. So great is their love, that they are willing to pay the price, to lose their jobs and their businesses. The other kind of love, and we must be charitable, is a delusion, but a self-serving one, for it offers an escape from the duty that truth demands.

The Rev. Dr. Peter Scaer is chairman and professor of Exegetical Theology and director of the M.A. program at Concordia Theological Seminary, Fort Wayne, Ind.

Be Informed

We give thanks that the “U.S. Court of Appeals for the 5th Circuit reversed a lower court decision and upheld the Texas pro-life law that prohibits dismemberment abortions.” Read the story here.

Be Equipped

When it comes to matters of faith and life in the church, are religious restrictions allowed or do they infringe on religious liberty? The Family Research Council explains.

Be Encouraged

“Gospel-motivated means we tell how Almighty God creates every human life as special, and that we treat them with that sanctity. It means we declare how He redeems every human life as precious, and that we demonstrate it to them. It means we proclaim how He calls every human life His own priceless treasure from fertilization to forever, and that we put it into practice.” – Rev. Michael Salemink, Executive Director of Mission and Ministry, Lutherans For Life

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