Lately, I’ve been thinking of writers, bloggers and authors. I’ve been thinking about controversy, and about agreement. I’ve been thinking of religion and of politics. (Dangerous, I know) And I’ve realized something about religion, and it’s something that concerns me.
We always hear about news being one-sided. We hear about pundits on both sides who rile up troops, and give an opinion from only one side while using misused or misleading evidence to back up their claims. They have little accountibility and so, they get away with the things they say. I think I’ve come to accept this reality as one that will be around for years to come (thanks social media and blogging). The one sided pundit and news isn’t what I’m writing about today, though. I’m speaking of the misrepresentation of facts evident in the religious sphere.
Like pundits, writers and leaders rile up the like-minded, using- at best- flimsy evidence, and they build their arguments based on speculation. We wonder why our society is such a wreck, and why people dis-trust the church. My opinion is that we have given them little to trust. We offer poor research, and grandiose opinions. We throw each other under the bus without hesitation if we think it will bring in a larger audience.
I must confess… I am guilty. I also believe, though, that everyone is guilty. We all have, at one time or another, misrepresented or misused evidence to win a debate. I am making a call to stop this selfish practice. If we want to move forward as a unified Church, and if we want those outside of our walls to take us seriously, then we need to begin to examine ourselves rigorously.
Finally, and most importantly, if we want to be men and women of integrity, we must write, speak and argue with integrity.
So, I am writing a promise, and offering a call to others. At this blog, I promise to:
1. Call others to honest and sincere dialogue.
2. Find the most accurate facts, and represent them with integrity, even if they go against what I want them to say.
3. Correct errors in my blogs or writings immediately and publicly.
4. Not offer opinion on a topic, subject, book or any other topic, unless I have read, researched or investigated said topic to the fullest extent possible.
5. I will not slander. period.
I am willing to add to this list. What do you guys think is important from writers and bloggers? Should Christians be held to a higher level than journalists? I sincerely hope to hear from you.