As you’ve probably noticed by now, I love cartoons, jokes, memes – any kind of (clean) humor. Even political cartoons, which have been around as long as we’ve had politics. Back in the day they were a way to exchange light-hearted banter about candidates and the political process, and keep things from getting so serious that things turned ugly.
Well folks, things are ugly now. That’s no surprise. But there is ugly, and there is hurtful, cruel ugly. Ridiculing a candidate’s child, for example, is cruel ugly. The helpless among us have traditionally been off limits, even when their famous parents were fair game.
Until a couple of years ago I was my mom’s caregiver for nearly a decade as she painfully and tragically struggled through an especially cruel type of dementia called Lewy Body Disease. It is so horrific that some, such as actor Robin Williams, would rather die than face it, and my mother begged for death more times than I can count during her journey through that dark maze of horrors. Though she had to be in a safe place with a strict routine and with people who were specially trained to deal with her dementia, I was with her often – very often – seeing to her needs, taking her out when she was able, spending time crying with her, and sometimes just holding her. Nobody will ever know all of it…
So today when I saw the worst of the worst “cartoons” I was not only mortified, but terribly hurt on behalf of the butt of the “joke” which showed Mr. Biden in a compromising position having one of his most personal bodily functions dealt with by his political peers. My heart broke!
Every human being is God’s creation, is loved by Him and has value to Him. Whether we see things the same as they do or agree with them or like how they choose to live their lives, they have value enough that Jesus died for them as much as for us. Just by virtue of being human, they have dignity, and that dignity must be preserved always. Anything else is cruel and hurtful and yes, ugly. It is especially devastating to me when the people who spread these cartoons claim to be Christians. I have 3 questions for anyone who thinks these things are ok, or even funny:
If Jesus was walking the earth right now, would He be posting things that are demeaning to the most helpless among us?
If your grandmother or father were to – God forbid! – develop dementia, would you also laugh when others publicly ridicule their helplessness and inability to care for their most personal needs?
Were YOU to become somehow helpless and were to see similar cartoons showing those who should be compassionate and trustworthy taking care of you with your legs up in the air…would you laugh?
There are no words in my language that can express the pain I felt when I saw that cartoon. I draw the line at “humor” that is ugly and mean and attacks people’s basic dignity, just because they are human. No better or no worse than you or I in the eyes of God, and much loved by Him. I hope that I never slip up and post anything that is ugly-cruel or heartless toward anyone, no matter who they are, what they do, what they believe, or even how they treat others. Because that’s not who Christ is, and that’s not who He commands His followers to be.
Feel free to share this, I hope that I’m not the only person who feels this way. Please tell me that you feel the hurt, too…