“Try calling the leader of China a socialist and see where it gets you,” I said to her with a smile. After another pot of coffee, we realized that we were going to have differing views on the actions of burning the equipment at the mosque site. I finally pleaded: how can we read our bible daily and allow the hate and fear of others to fester from our pores? "Isn’t that the opposite of being a Christian?” I asked sadly. “I don’t hate them,” she said quietly. I was not trying to change her mind on any issues, I only wanted to her understand and respect my family’s heritage of nonviolent protests that I strongly believe in today. I have friends from all different backgrounds. We have dialogued about the mosques building that have the media swarming in Tennessee like termites.
Tennessee has become a haven for national corporations over the last decade or so. With booms in trade and industry, diversity in ethnicity and religion has followed. As we have opened our arms to invite others to Tennessee for economic reasons, we have to accept with those invitations an influx of other cultures. Those cultures which at one time were in the background are more visible because of the growth in our population, the anti-Muslim political climate, and the everpresent media hype without a purpose.
In this age of social media, it is easy to adopt a Twitter mindset of following and unfollowing the Constitution depending on how we feel about a particular subject. But as Christians, folks are supposedly to think and act differently, right? Since there are Christian groups and church folks as numerous as the stars above in the Middle Tennessee area, I would have thought a leader would have stepped forward from one of the many national Christian organizations that are based here and calmed the masses with words that would curtail violent behavior, knowing our Southern heritage of protests followed by cruelty. We are in desperate need of leaders who preach the gospel to remind us to practice the words that are printed in our area by the hour. Let me close with the verse with which I closed my coffee session with my friend.