Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Rally To Restore Civility

Faith UCC in Iowa City is hosting an unofficial local branch of Jon Stewart's "Rally to Restore Sanity." This rally/worship event is being called "The Rally to Restore Civility." Why? Because it's needed. Civil discourse has been replaced with adversarial posturing.

Liberal vs. Conservative. Moderate vs. Extreme. Democrat vs. Republican. Pro-Life vs. Pro-Choice. Pro-War vs. Anti-Military. Communist vs. Capitalist. Mainline vs. Evangelical. Protestant vs. Catholic. Mac vs. PC. The list could go on and on. Everything gets divided up into opposing sides by politicians and the media. And profit-driven soundbites have replaced honest nuance. So, in this scenario, everyone ends up at war with their own friends and family. In reality, most of this stuff is just silly banter.

The Rally to Restore Civility is aimed at celebrating our commonalities as well as our unity-in-diversity. Hopefully events like this will help us all discover the truth of these words by Jonathan Sacks:

"Difference does not diminish; it enlarges the sphere of human possibilities. Our last best hope is to recall the classic statement of John Donne and the more ancient story of Noah after the Flood and hear, in the midst of our hypermodernity, an old-new call to a global covenant of human responsibility and hope. Only when we realize the danger of wishing that everyone should be the same...will we prevent the clash of civilizations, born of the sense of threat and fear. We will learn to live with diversity once we understand the God-given, world-enhancing dignity of difference."


  1. Now that I am in Nebraska, had I been settled and all, I would catch the bus and come out that way. Civility is what missing in salons of thought these days, people unwilling to admit to being wrong as it seems they are risking their own eternal souls.

  2. Love the phrase "saloons of thought"!