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Sometimes I like to chat with the farther right than I, those who some call the “God, Guns, and Gays” crowd. In case anyone is blessed enough to be oblivious, there is a culture war going on in the US, donja know. Social Justice Warriors versus Trumpians, the Right versus the Left, (but I’ve gone and lost the middle, so you’ll have to sort it all out yourself.) Traditionalists versus Conservatives, Constitutionalists versus Libertarians, this swirling mass of confusion right off the pages of a comic book, portraying a world seized by moral ambiguity and the endless struggle for that ever elusive clarity…

We need a hero, a cut and dry simplistic hero, none of this “Batman versus Superman” junk where you can’t tell the good guys from the bad guys, because the good guy has gone bad and in the end the only one we’re certain is truly awful, the evil super-villian…. is the little Christian grandma. Yes, I recently read exactly that in a comic book. No more of this “truth, justice, and the American way,” junk that used to limit and oppress our superheroes, they now know who the real enemy is and it’s clearly grandma with her endless prayers and frequent admonishments. What a pain in the behind she is.

“What is this, Jesus Christ as John Wayne?” asked someone who is not such a fan of the 3G crowd, which caused me to choke on my coffee nearly as much as the comment that demanded to know, “am I sharpening iron here or trying to polish a turd?”

Ah people, you gotta love them, they can be so darn funny…

Before anyone gets their bloomers in a  twist, I am primarily just an observer, once in a while a bit of collateral damage, but mostly just someone who enjoys observing culture and putting in a good word for our Lord and Savior now and then.

So, John Wayne as Jesus Christ, those who take their protection and provision skills seriously, those who walk in the shadows of the Duke, and yes…. do sometimes get those two people confused. I envy them their innocence sometimes, the gunslingers who believe it is their sovereign duty to rid the world of evil and protect their loved ones.

So how do you get rid of evil? You shoot it, of course, becasue evil always comes dressed in black and rides in at sunset, clearly marked, and full of malevolent intent. Those are the bad guys, the undersirables, and they usually have an “E for Evil” tatooed on their forehead, which makes it okay to kill them. Oh, speak to me of castle doctines and imaginary burglars and the sweetness of a good Western where life is so simple…

Sometimes I think I am a woman who has simply seen too much. I am torn between the moral choice to burst bubbles, to shatter illusions, or the way leaving people in complete ignorance can be such bliss. I have simply seen too much, I know that one cannot actually shoot evil, that it does not wear black and ride into town, graciously allowing you to become a hero and save the day. Evil is so ordinary, so banal, and it seldom even recognizes itself for what it is.

You just can’t shoot things like cancer or addiction or child sexual abuse, you can’t fix broken hearts and broken spirits, you can’t shoot poverty and despair. You just can’t fix a broken world with a gun like John Wayne use to. I wish we could, I wish we lived in a  world where might makes right and the good guys always win. I wish I could hand people a target clearly marked “evil” and just go pop some popcorn.

You learn some things when you’ve seen too much, you learn that when all you’ve got is God, God is all you need, and that when the world breaks you He draws even closer, and you learn that that “neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor powers, nor things present, nor things to come, Nor height, nor depth, nor any other creature, shall be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.”