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Baptist Church

1st of March 2014

It may be too early in the year to talk on this subject but last night, 27 January , I watched the first episode of ‘Britain’s Great War’ on the BBC. I was transfixed, not by the horror of history, not by the sheer futility (both of which are relevant), but by my own ignorance. I think reading the spoilers online I am set to be even more embarrassed. What this program sets out to do is to rubbish a great deal of misunderstanding and misrepresentation that has pervaded years of education and, quite frankly, jingoism. By no means is there an attempt to hide the dreadfulness of war but it is put into context with the times and the people involved and ultimately their reactions.

I can’t help feeling a little dazed because my own misconceptions were shown up for what they were, witlessness. I, like many I guess, thought that we were all, as a nation, very willing to enter into this conflict, but far from it. Jeremy Paxman, in a less confrontational way than we are used to, remarked on the fear and disgust at war from politicians reduced to tears and people marching for peace. It was only when all felt it inevitable that the xenophobia and propaganda kicked in.

If this touches a nerve with you then may be like me, you might want to reassess a great deal more of our prejudices; from our judgements about those of other faiths, from our conclusions about those of other cultures, and even our beliefs of young people as a whole.

This even may be true a little closer to home and we need to tackle our assumptions of Christianity. May I be excused in this case and hope you might be willing to agree with Dr Martin Luther King, Jr. when he said, “Nothing in the world is more dangerous than sincere ignorance and conscientious stupidity”. Then we all might get somewhere.
Ignorance is surely not bliss in this case, is it?
Love Jason, The Man in the Manse

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