My Rights, Your Rights


Write a new post in response to today’s one-word prompt.


Wow.  It was fascinating to look through all the results I got from googling the word banned. There are so many things that have been banned by some group or the other that it got me completely off track from what I had originally intended to write this morning. Instead, I got to thinking about who has the right to ban anything or anyone.

I have the right to ban cigarettes in my house.  Also, nudity or near-nudity.  I don’t want to see your private parts.  That’s why they’re called private.  I have the right to ban alcohol in my house.  I have the right to turn off my TV if whatever I’m watching is offensive to me.  I have the right not to invite people into my house that I don’t wish to see. I also have the right to avoid places that I dislike, or people that I don’t trust.  Legally, I have the right of free speech, practice of my religion, and the right to keep and bear arms. I have the right to have as many children as I please.

I do NOT have the right to impose my personal preferences or even my convictions on YOU. And you don’t have the right to impose yours on me.

America is a wonderful place. It gives the disgruntled the freedom to destroy the flag that gives the the freedom to destroy the flag.  Makes a lot of sense, right?

And best of all, America gives those who hate us the right to leave; it even allows Americans who despise America the right to leave.

No one who comes to America has the right to limit my freedoms so that they will not be offended. If you don’t like American culture and religious freedoms, then don’t come to America.  See how easy that is?  Then we won’t have all the to-do about banning things that others have no problem with.

Of course, there are those out there who think America is provincial and stupid because we look askance at public nudity. Too bad.  I hope we never forsake that ban.  I don’t want you looking at what is under my clothes, and I certainly don’t want to see what is under yours.

One more thought and I’m done.  I find the practice of certain religions who ban members who have gone astray to be highly questionable.  When banning is used to bring the person back into the fold, it often has the opposite effect.  I’m pretty sure that if someone banned me from their society until I conformed to whatever standard they have set–well, I would have no desire at all to get into line. You would never get me to wear Nikes just because everyone else is wearing Nikes.  I’d simply go find people who like what I like, or who at the very least will leave me alone about my footwear or any other clothing.  See?  When banning is used for “discipline,” then it is really nothing but coercion. It is forcing someone else to give up something they want in order to regain your approval. However, I don’t have the right to insist on banning banning.  It’s their right to have free practice of religion.

By the way, did you ever think about the word disgruntled ?  if being unhappy about something is being disgruntled, then why isn’t gruntled the opposite? No one has ever said, “Oh, I’m a little gruntled about that!”



5 thoughts on “My Rights, Your Rights

  1. I’m falling behind with my incoming mail! I wanted to leave one comment when I first read this, regarding “banning” by religious groups, but time got away.

    I’ve heard of the O.O. Amish (& various other groups) “banning” or “shunning,” but this may not be the ban you seem to have in mind. Few groups would go so far as to totally exclude the expelled member from having anything to do with them.

    There are dozens of groups of Old Order Amish and Mennonites and the practice of shunning would vary from one to the other. A good friend who left the Amish to join another church was expelled and he told us some of their practices. For example, his married children would never say, “Come in” when he was at the door, so he’d just walk in and visit with them — which was okay. He wasn’t banned from their presence, but they weren’t allowed to make him feel welcome.

    A Jehovah’s Witness told me one time that when folks are excommunicated from their church, they may come to the services, but must sit in the back row and not take part in SS discussions until they are restored to fellowship again.

    There is a scriptural basis for an avoidance but it wasn’t ever meant to be a literal avoidance of the person, rather an avoidance of fellowship as if united in faith. Since the expelled one has lost the way and needs to find the Lord again, you can’t treat him as if you think everything is all well and good in his life. I suspect all Christians feel this certain awkwardness or reserve toward someone who has clearly lost the way, but (I assume) most churches don’t really have rules or guidelines as to how to demonstrate this.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. It’s true that we are to avoid certain people, but it is only the ones who are preaching or teaching or following a false docytinr, and it is a protection of the church that these folks not be allowed influence. What I have in mind, though, is the shunning of someone who has simply chosen not to accept a manmade law that has very scant biblical backing.For example, I heard about a woman who visited a church for the first time. She wore slacks. She was approached by two of the elders’ wives, who told her she could either wear a dress or skirt that they had available, or that she would have to leave. I am appalled by such legalistic treatment of someone who may need compassion, not judgment.


      1. I haven’t heard of something like that, but it’s definitely sad. I think that’s why Jesus took special efforts to heal the lepers and meet with the Samaritan woman. He was our prime example of offering compassion to all and showing acceptance of the untouchables in His society.

        Liked by 1 person

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