Saturday, January 07, 2012

Who Will Stand by the Poor and Oppressed?

The pope, in his speech described the military leadership along the lines of honorable men that make us proud. It is no secret that the men he praised are criminals in every sense of the word. They are murders, thieves and liars.

What are we to understand when criminals are exalted and when injustice is praised? What are we to understand when the pope sees honor in killings and lies? What are we to  deduce when the symbol of morality for Christians praises lies, deceit and finds honor in injustice.

I thought we were supposed to stand for justice. I thought we were supposed to stand for truth. I thought many things. I thought the church was supposed to follow its teachings. I thought the pope was supposed to lead people into doing what’s right. I thought many things.

Silence is golden, true, but complicity is not. Why is it that we do not do the right thing anymore? Why don’t we even attempt? People pray five times a day and yet do not want to say the truth. People are afraid of what might happen to them I suppose, so they accept what they’ve been given. They accept the nothing they’ve been given.

I have no words to tell the pope really, except that maybe I understood Christianity incorrectly. I remember reading that Jesus stood up for the poor and oppressed when no one would. He did not take the side of the law enforcers, the scribes and the Pharisees but took the side of the sinners. He took the side of the poor, even when they did wrong. He condemned the rich and powerful. Is that not what we should do? Should we not take the side of the poor and the weak? What good is it then to follow Christ if we do not follow his example?

Maybe I understood Christianity incorrectly when I thought that to follow Jesus’ model, one should always hold the truth dear and not utter a lie. Maybe I misunderstood Jesus when he told those who were filled with righteousness and no remorse that they were vipers.

Christ said he is the truth when he was asked. He said it because He values the truth and He is the truth. Then why don’t we say it when we are asked? Why don’t we say what truly happened. Why don’t we ask for someone to find out the truth for us?

When Christ was hit, he asked why. When our brothers and sisters were killed at Maspero by army forces, did we even ask why? We know that we will be unjustly accused and condemned, but we have to ask anyway, we have to speak the truth when the time is right. Instead of calling for justice or even forgiveness for the murders, their heinous acts were praised as ‘honorable’.

Once in a while, people forget the way of Christ when they deal with politics too long. Jesus said, “Give to Caesar what belongs to Caesar and give to God what belongs to God.” Now money, taxes and power all belong to Caesar and that we should give. But truth, justice and integrity belong to God and we must give him that even at the expense of Caesar. Praise in the face of injustice is not rightfully Caesar’s. Giving up our rights is not rightfully theirs. We must speak the truth, we must hold whoever has killed accountable and do what we set out to do. Preach the truth and the wisdom of the truth.

Who will stand by the poor if not us? We do not need to fight, we do not need to take up arms, we need only speak the truth as loudly as we can.


Truly honorable people can be heard in the background saying 'Down with military rule'


In retrospect, the truth

5 comments:

Lanie said...

Excellent article, I agree absolutely. However, I also see the Pope's position in attempting to protect the people. Surely he does not want more bloodshed because of his comments, but at the same time speaking truth and defending people carries with it a burden. Tough call on his part I think, but in this day and age, I agree with you. We must stand up at all times, in every way and against all odds.

Wael Eskandar said...

Thanks Lanie, what prompted this is the needless praise of military as men who honor us, not trying to strike a balance. If he would have only thanked them for coming, I would not have felt such bitterness.

The Blower's Daughter said...

Brilliant post, I agree with you Wael, but I also think the Pope has tried to protect the people.
But the fact is that it has been a great pleasure to read your posts for a while, but now all this talk of standing for justice, saying the truth, being able to give true love, it has made me tired, so i think i will stop reading them..
When you wear your journalist and blogger mask, it is easy for you to speak the truth loudly.
But who are you underneath this mask?
"Once I embraced you, but you didn’t embrace me.. It was as if your heart was full of stones.."
How much do you really care about the entire Egypt, if you don’t care about a single person? If you don’t say the truth when it is far more convenient to adulterate it, how can you ask others to speak the truth? If you don’t do what you say, how can you ask others to take action?
All these powerful words.. but I think you are just running from yourself..
I really think you can be a better one, if you only try to put your heart into everything you do, but first you have to understand when your heart went missing..
I wish you a happy new year, my friend, and I hope you will find the courage “to be the change you want to see in the world”

Anonymous said...

I am happy to follow your steps in the blogging and political activities side.
This article is inline with many twitter comments from activists whom considered Pop's welcoming to SCAF leaders as a sin. Allow me to give few comments:
1. You are not clear whether your article is a political or religious critisizm. You mentioned many references to christianity and showed doubt to your faith itself.
2. Your attitude against a sinful Pop -as you beleive- is not appropriate as per the christian spirit. Review St.Pauls comments regarding the Arch Priest.
3. I join your initial frustration for what the Pop did but can not judge him. I was not there and I do not know the background.
4. The story has not ended yet. Look at the other video of Damsheria priest and understand it. The Pop was prisoned before and he has nothing to loose. He has differnt point of view that we do not understand.
5. Pop can make mistakes. However, do you read between news lines now and see that SCAF is trying to position 25 as the demonstration of Christians? If not, I can send you some articles. Using the religion has proven to be the most suucessful tool for SCAF. I beleive even their might has been a mistake by the Pop, God will use it for the best of the country that you care for.
6. Do you think that christian people in the chatedral have forgotten re Maspero, no. They were trying to react to what the Pop has just explained regarding christian attitude of giving.

Wael Eskandar said...

To anonymous, if you ever come back on and read this.

I have no doubt in the faith, I was using a technique to show the contradiction if that has been lost on you.

My commentary is a commentary on morals, truth and lies. You can see it as political or religious, as you like.. I'm not confused, but it seems you need that distinction.

I never said he was 'sinful' although we all are, and as you are well aware, the pope is not infallible.

Also, if you know the bible well, you'll understand that leaders make mistakes and need people to correct them.

The one thing I object to is lying about the military, they do not honor us, they did not do their best. If you read the post carefully, I have no problems with the welcoming of them, but singing them false praises is where I drew the line.

Address the point of hypocrisy not welcoming.