[Author's note: the opinion editorial below was submitted to and printed by The News Enterprise; sadly, their website leaves a lot to be desired so in case this link does not work or display the full content, the article in its entirety appears below. Also this is NOT the image the newspaper ran above my opinion article, though theirs was pretty good, I just liked this was equally well, but it edged out a bit more powerful on its statement and it was in color lol!]
Cliché has it wrong
Ignorance is not bliss; and certainly when it is arrogantly portrayed as blatant bigotry, the cliché becomes an all too-readily available excuse by others for another’s words or deeds. No, in fact ignorance is divisive, delusional and deadly, but rarely is it blissful.
Recent letters about Sharia law, immigrants and foreign language speakers, coupled with the news about current bills being debated in Congress that may allow U.S. employers to opt out of certain insurance coverage(s) under moral or religious grounds provide perfect examples of the hypocrisy by which most view, filter, act and react. It seems you’re welcomed if it’s my God, if you speak my language, if you believe my ideology.
It’s too bad writing wasn’t more widespread a few hundred years ago, that our ancestors didn’t keep better diaries or accounts and those that did weren’t more honest about their struggles. Then maybe, xenophobia, prejudices and even violence — or ignorance — wouldn’t be so rabid.
Political correctness or incorrectness has nothing to do with being right or wrong. You can be completely brash but still be fully spot on; conversely, you can be polite, speak well and even smile but be wholly wrong and profusely offensive.
Yes, many, if not most, Americans do believe in God, but that includes not just the hundreds of Christian denominations, but also His children who worship through Judaism or submit unto Him under Islam. Despite this overwhelming commonality and seeming majority, that gives us not the right to opine or oppress others to our ways in every way.
Should we force the Amish into our public schools and shun them for not taking a pledge to our flag because they consider it sacrilege? Should we call Jehovah’s Witnesses out for jury duty just to see if they’ll take an oath and then jail them when they won’t? Would Teddy Roosevelt, who protested “In God We Trust” on money as sacrilege, approve of Congress limiting healthcare for women under moral grounds while providing Viagra to men without question? What is the ancestry of 99 percent of Americans? I wonder what language [my] the Mignot family spoke when they emigrated to the U.S. in 1856 from France?
If we want ignorance to be blissful, then be humble enough to know we don’t always really know; ask more questions before purporting to espouse the answers, please.
W. R. Mineo