Lent begins today. With none of the fanfare of Christmas, or the revelry of Mardi Gras, this is the Christian season of sacrifice, a time of introspection when we prepare for Christ’s coming sacrifice at the Crucifixion. Giving up something is a symbolic way of remembering what was ahead of Jesus and forcing us out of our everyday First World Problems.
In the past I’ve given up anger, buying new clothes, soda, tortilla chips – you get the idea. Every time I reach for one of those indulgences, I contemplate what it would be like to be really tested.
This year I’m trying positive reinforcement. Instead of not doing something, I’m making a commitment to speak out against injustice, misrepresentation and hate.
The Ted Talk by Clint Smith was my inspiration.
And this incredible anti-Muslim graphic, which popped up on my Twitter feed, is what I’m speaking out against today. The Spanish Inquisition and the Crusades were officially sanctioned acts of war by both Church and State. Where are those acts (or their leaders) represented on this graph? In what way are the actions of Mohammed ‘counted’ as violent acts to accumulate in such a tally? Pseudo-science like this fuel harmful misconceptions.