The Real Divide

By Cliff Springs

Satan is a master of deception.

As a Christian, I believe wholeheartedly in the existence of Satan and his daily efforts to draw mankind away from the love and truth of God.  It is in this light that I can’t help but draw some conclusions about the Trayvon Martin / George Zimmerman tragedy.  First and foremost, this was a tragedy, but the legalities of the case are not the focus of my assertions here.

I want to talk about truth.  Since the beginning of time, Satan has known that the greatest opportunity to divide and conquer mankind begins–no, not with race, religion, ethnicity, or gender–but with the family.  No other institution possesses the power, love, and intimacy needed to disciple the truth of God’s love.  But even if you’re not a Believer, only ignorance would deny that the foundation of morality, values, and ethics begin within the home.  If Satan can undermine that foundation, he can undermine the support system that is so essential to self-esteem and so essential to having healthy relationships in every facet of life.

The methods and tactics employed by Satan have taken on numerous forms–all designed to divert our attention to a variety of battlegrounds that are ultimately offshoots of the real problem:  the destruction of the healthy family unit.  The legal attacks on prayer in school, the disregard for common values under the guise of intellectual freedom, the abdication of responsibility for the pursuit of individual “rights” and pleasures, and without question–the legalized murder of unborn children celebrated under the premise of personal “choice” are all legitimate societal concerns, but those who advocate on their behalf would be diminished exponentially were the societal foundation of the family strong and intact.

We have allowed marriage to be redefined as having no definition and perhaps even worse, we have allowed marriage to be redefined as unnecessary.  Yet who in their right mind believes that a child being raised in a loving home with a mother and father is not better off than a child with no father or a child with parents who he or she sees intermittently throughout the year?  The statistical causes of poverty scream loudly that marriage and family stability play an enormous role in avoiding or overcoming the perpetuated cycle of poverty, yet society continues to look for band-aid solutions rather than stressing the importance of a preventative measure that carries with it a religious or moral label (marriage before procreation combined with long-term marital commitment).

Adults have even managed to convince themselves that their children can develop healthy relationships on their own while they themselves cannot.  These reckless adults have selfishly shifted the burdens of learning and adapting to life and responsibilities from their own plate to that of their kids and convinced themselves that this self-absorption is merely another of life’s “choices” in their pursuit of the happiness to which they believe themselves entitled.

As a result, life, love, and family have all been devalued and have caused the family unit to disintegrate.  And this disintegration feeds upon itself–disintegrating more and more with each generation knowing less and less about the things in life that really matter.

And this brings us back to the Trayvon Martin case.  I do not believe the primary disease is racism.  As the African-American family has dissolved over the past 50 years, young, black men have been left to fend for themselves–emulating whomever will show them acceptance or demonstrate something to which they can aspire.  Often those they are forced to emulate (entertainers, athletes, gang leaders, etc.) are not those most deserving of role model status.

These young men then become like their fathers or these role models–unmarried biological parents to children they abandon physically and/or emotionally.  Knowing that young ladies acquire much of their self-esteem and sense of worth from loving fathers, it is easy to see the cycle of destruction created in this familial vacuum.  Without adequate role models, the natural result is poverty, lack of education, lack of self worth, and crime.

Satan then uses these results to divide.  He knows that people are inherently prejudicial–always seeking what is like us to draw us together and what is different from us to drive us apart.  When crime, educational levels, or socio-economic differences separate us, race is often chosen as the primary culprit.  And when Satan can distract us from the cure, he knows the disease will continue to spread.

This familial dissolution is in no way inherent to African-Americans.  Unfortunately, they are merely at the front of the line as the rest of society rapidly falls into lock-step.  What is needed in every home in America–black, white, green, or purple is a mother and father in a loving marriage who teach their children that they are first loved by God.

I do not deny in any way that racism exists, but the attempts to bridge the divide will continually fail in the same way that taking a pain reliever every day is pointless if you never bother to remove the knife lodged in your back.  Sadly, I don’t believe the races will ever rise above these differences as long as society can’t even recognize that so many of the problems in our culture begin at a genetic level far deeper than race:  the family.


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