I'm reminded of the old, wise pastor who was one of my instructors before ordination. I asked him once what he considered to be the worst sin an average person was likely to commit. He snorted. "The sins of the flesh, which most people put in headlines, are so common as to be almost petty. The worst sin?" He paused thoughtfully. "To my mind, that has to be to take away someone else's good name. If you gossip, or spread falsehoods, or slander somebody, the damage you do can never be undone. You can stand in the middle of the public square, and cry aloud that you'd lied, and what you'd said wasn't true: but there will always be those who'll assume you don't mean it, or were made to recant under pressure. They'll continue to believe the worst of the person you initially defamed, and continue to spread your initial falsehoods about them. Since such damage can never be undone, I think that's about the worst sin of which I can conceive for ordinary people.
Saturday, July 25, 2009
Quote of the Day
I found myself in Bayou Renaissance Man's archives (not a bad thing to find yourself doing, BTW), and found this which sums up my feelings on President Obama's remarks about the Cambridge police department: