Friday, December 18, 2009

Taming the Tongue

To me, liberalism and idealism are a sign of defective thinking and reasoning. Anyone who knows the bible realizes that human beings cannot govern nor create anything beneficial without Jesus' guiding hand. Even then, because the world is contaminated by sin, this is a monumental challenge. Something as benign as the subject of electric cars is a case in point. This subject polarizes people to no end in a way few material things can. People love their cars (me included), but we must also guard our hearts, and our tongues (or in this case, keyboards) when we voice our opinions concerning such trivial matters (to me is anything outside of Jesus or His work).

I've probably made mention of this before, but it bears mention again,

My brethren, be not many masters, knowing that we shall receive the greater condemnation. For in many things we offend all. If any man offend not in his word, the same is a perfect man and able to bridle the whole body. Behold, we put bit in the horses' mouths, that they may obey us; and we turn about their whole body. Behold also the ships, which though they be so great, and are driven of the fierce winds, yet they are turned about with a very small helm (rudder), withersoever the governor listeth (wherever the captain wants). Even so the tongue is a little member (part of the body) and boasteth great things. Behold, how great a matter of a little fire kindleth! And the tongue is a fire, a world of iniquity: so is the tongue among our members (other parts of the body), that it defileth the whole body, and setteth on fire the course of nature: and it is set on fire of hell. For every kind of beasts, and of birds, and of serpents, and of the things of the sea, is tamed, and hath been tamed of mankind: But the tongue can no man tame; it is an unruly evil, full of deadly poison. Therwith we bless God, even the Father: and therewith curse we men, which are made after the similitude of God. Out of the same mouth proceedeth blessing and cursing. My brethren, these things ought not so to be. Doth a fountain send forth at the same place sweet water and bitter? Can the fig tree, my brethren, bear olive berries? either a vine, figs? so can no fountain yield salt water and fresh. James 3:1-12 KJV

For the King James impaired I added modern explanations in parentheses.

A week or two ago, I left a very innocent comment on a video sharing site which I'm a frequent visitor. The video happened to be about the electric car and in particular what GM did with the EV1, their attempt, at that time at a "zero emissions vehicle." While there's some controversy concerning this, the fact is that General Motors ended the project because it was a money loser for them. However, I never said anything bad except that "You can't carry a family in an EV1." This was fact, not even opinion as a family constitutes two parents and a child or more children. In my case it's a family of four. The EV1 seated two people, a driver and a passenger. No controversy here. It's the same as calling a Corvette a sports car. If I called it a family car, I would be committing a fallacy.

However, one young man went off the deep end toward me and explained that electric cars would have been a lot more utilitarian if government and industry had been working toward dedicating themselves to a better world and not easy money (paraphrased to protect the guilty). The last part of the statement, was "get you head out of your behind." That wasn't what he said, but you get the idea.

I have to confess that I nearly laid into this guy. Rather than tear him apart, which I could have done incredibly easily; I merely stated that in fact, I was stating the facts. I also told him to get over himself (a far cry from what I'm capable of and still very true). He did the unthinkable and apologized to me, but went on to voice his concern about the possibility of me being another "naysayer" to his cause. I let him have it, the argument, that is. "No sense in pushing this further" I thought. I would much rather win this guy for Jesus than the virtues of the internal combustion engine. Maranatha!

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