Recent events in Baltimore have set me to thinking about people’s relationships and how we live together. I believe I have some difficult words to share with you. Some of you may be upset by my words. But, I want all of you to remember one thing. God loves you and because he does I love you, too. If I had a friend who displayed early symptoms of a serious disease that I recognized, but they did not, I think I would not be much of a friend if I did not warn them.
My favorite Church hymn is the song Amazing Grace and so I will take a moment to share something about it. The man who wrote this song was a very successful captain of a slave ship. Then one day he had an encounter with God. The first line of the song says it all. Amazing grace, how sweet the sound that saved a wretch like me. I’ve always been able to identify with that line and that song. Oh, I wasn’t a slaver, of course. Never robbed a bank. Never shot anybody. Actually, I thought I was pretty good. I went to church regularly and had a string of additions to my childhood Sunday School pin for good attendance. But then one day I had to compare myself to Jesus and God’s standards and realized what a “wretch” I was and am. But, because God first loved me I once was lost, but now am found, was blind, but now I see. And, so, now I can love all of you.
There are those who love to criticize the 1950s. And there was a lot wrong in the 50s. But the 50s represented basic changes in some important aspects of society. In 1948 Democrat Harry Truman set the military on a course to treat blacks and whites the same. It wouldn’t happen overnight, but there were significant changes fairly quickly. In the 50s Republican Dwight Eisenhower enforced the racial integration of schools. Progress would be much slower than the military, but the course was set.
Those same people really hate TV shows of the 1950s like Leave it to Beaver, Father Knows Best and Make Room for Daddy. But if you take the time to watch those shows you will see that the stories usually have a moral about subjects like honesty, integrity and caring for others. I guess that’s why they hate those shows.
Did you know that in 1950 about 83% of black children lived in two parent families? What happened? Well, first God was thrown out of the schools in the early 60s. Then we had a sexual revolution. Stop and think for a few minutes. Are things really better in our society as a result of the revolution? If people were really happier and more fulfilled sexually do you think they’d really need so much porn? Really? Then we had the “Great Society” and the “War on Poverty.” Young women were encouraged by OUR government to have children without a husband. I don’t really blame those women so much. They were young, they were told God didn’t matter; they were told that sexual behavior was “anything goes” and they were offered a reward by OUR government for that behavior. I know exactly who to blame. I blame those who encouraged that behavior.
My sister gave me a birthday gift years ago that was, essentially, the front page of the Evening Sun for my date of birth. One of the more interesting stories was about a murder in Baltimore. There wasn’t anything special about it, except that it was a murder in Baltimore City and so it was front-page news! Now, granted, a recent death in Baltimore dominated the front page of the Sun for several weeks. We are half way through August and the number of murders in Baltimore City has already reached 200. Most of the victims have been young black men and their story only makes the front page if there’s some special aspect to it. Like death in police custody or the murder of an important witness in an upcoming trial. Am I the only one who thinks that’s a very sad commentary on society today?
So, why are hundreds of young black men (and some women) being murdered every year? Why do other young black men hold life so meaningless? I’ve already mentioned the expulsion of God from the schools in the early 60s. Add to that the progressive exclusion of God and his Word from government and society in the intervening years. On top of that we see the lack of a father figure for black children – and, increasingly, white children – in the family structure. In the side bar I pose a question asking if you tell a teenager that it’s OK to kill a baby the day before it is born, but it is not OK to kill a baby the day after it’s born, what conclusion do you think that teen will arrive at about the sanctity of life?
What to do? The only real solution is God. But, instead of America turning back to God, America is turning its back to God. I wrote about this at length in another post, but it is important to understand. The black community in Baltimore (and in many cities) has serious problems. The reasons are listed above. White communities have a similar problem, but it doesn’t show up in the annual statistics of homicides as much – yet. The solution for ALL communities is to identify the real problems. The most serious of the real problems is the single parent family. I know that as soon as I say that liberals will cite anecdotal examples of wonderful citizens produced by a single parent family. But the simple statistics prove that single parent families produce children with a much higher likelihood of ending up in prison. To solve that problem Churches that serve these communities must encourage young women to follow Biblical principles related to sex, children and marriage. Instead I see leaders like Jesse Jackson and Al Sharpton encouraging abominations like abortion and homosexuality. And they seem to have no interest at all in ending the problem of the single parent family. I am actually shocked that God has not already brought judgment on America. I hope that we will turn back to Him before it is too late. Pray for America!