I Don't Believe In Okra!
I Don’t Believe In Okra!
by Neil Murphy
I am a child of the 50s, a WWII baby boomer with all the experiences that time brings. My dad was in charge of everything, and we ate what my dad liked, and my dad liked okra! I on the other hand after experiencing a constant diet of the stuff have decided that it might not even be a food product. I think perhaps it is but a carefully crafted prank played by Southerners on the rest of the world. A sort of “hey, let’s see if we can get the rest of America to eat this alien looking weed!” Having said that I suppose I can say wholeheartedly “I don’t believe in Okra!” I however would never impose my beliefs on others, be offended by its consumption by others or get all indignant when I see it for sale or growing in a garden. And I certainly would never attempt to deny others the pleasure of consuming it.
Why then can a small minority of Americans who claim they don’t believe in God inflict their lack of belief on the rest of us? Why should they expect us to cater to them when they claim to be offended by our beliefs? How can you be offended by something you claim doesn’t exist and that you don’t believe in? That is like being offended by Unicorns!
In the public arena non-believers seem to always be highly offended and fall back on the old worn out myth of the “separation of church and state” that is so often pointed toward when someone wants to deny religious freedom to someone else.
The First Amendment of The US Constitution simply states “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof ….” The US Constitution simply requires that the US government refrain from setting up and or controlling religion. Remember our founders came from a country which controlled the church and were leaving to achieve religious freedom. Many years later a minority has co-opted a statement made by Thomas Jefferson to stifle public prayer, remove Christian symbols and expressions of Christianity from public arenas and inflict their minority opinion on the rest of us who are content to let everyone alone about the issue.
Maybe it is time for us to stand up to these busy bodies and just say no! If God offends you, if seeing a symbol causes you distress, if hearing someone pray hurts your feelings, get over it, get a life and stop ruining it for the rest of us! Many things in life truly offend me and cause me distress. I find some attitudes and behavior by others terribly distressing. I however learned a long time ago that I cannot fix everything by outlawing it. Sometimes you just have got to let it be, pray about it and move on. And always remember I don’t believe in Okra!!!
submitted by cs murphy
- Catherine Schmid Murphy