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Bette Grande: This is what happens when we allow God to be cut out of our lives

Article by, Bette Grande

*Article was originally published in the Fargo Forum on March 25th, 2018.

As the debate over gun violence, such as it is, continues on these pages and across the country, it is easy to see how divided we have become. It is also easy to see that no one is seriously talking about the root cause of violence in our society. We see shootings, stabbings and bombings, and the easy narrative is that it is guns or the NRA. It is harder to pinpoint causes of coarseness in our society, but without identifying the causes we will not see a long-term solution.

The short-term solution includes armed and trained school resource officers, as we learned this past week. The fact that the media and the student walkout organizers do not talk about what happened in Maryland does not change the fact that it worked.

The long-term solution? There are no easy answers, but it starts with us.

We are far too quick to be offended by what others say or do, and we respond by lashing out at others. By being so quickly offended we give other people control over our lives, and the increasing violent reactions to perceived offense have us at war with each other.

How did we get here? Why do so many lack joy, love, hope and gratitude? Far too many of us no longer value and respect life.

I am old enough to remember that it was not always this way. Sure, there was disagreement and conflict, but it did not lead to the level of violence we see today. We have seen our nation fall away from the value system it was founded upon. We allowed God to be cut out of our lives slowly and meticulously. The so called “separation of church and state” movement destroys the moral underpinning of this nation. Without God at the center there is no truth, no moral compass, no moral conduct standard. Moral conduct today is relative based on one’s feelings.

Our children look for quick gratification, watching people tear down others to build themselves up, and then wonder why we have rage when it doesn’t go their way and bullying on the upswing. Anti-social behavior is going unchecked. Do what feels good, just don’t get caught. In a piece titled “Emotional Learning Will Be the Downfall of Society,” my colleague Teresa Mull stated, “The problem is not that children have emotions, but that government schools can’t acknowledge that absolute truth and right and wrong exist, let alone what truth, right, and wrong are. So, we have a bunch of kids trained to embrace their feelings—and since feelings can’t be right or wrong, society devolves into chaos.” There is a need for accountability. It must come from parents, teachers, ministers, employers, friends and law enforcement. It is time to get back to caring for our families, neighbors, communities, and country. No, not the government or its programs, but us. Reach out and help someone. It can be as simple as listening, a meal, a smile.

It may not be as simple as attacking guns or the NRA, but if we truly want a solution it is a place to start.

Grande represented the 41st District in the N.D. Legislature from 1996 to 2014. She is a wife, mom, grandma, research fellow with the Heartland Institute, lover of life and Jesus. 

*Article was originally published in the Fargo Forum on March 25th, 2018.

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