No Choice – Religion and Politics

I can remember times in my life when I was certain I had to take a given course of action—that there was no other thing I could do in the situation or circumstances in which I found myself at a given moment in time.

Part of what drove that perspective, was the feeling I needed to rush to make decisions about every problem that confronted me.

The funny thing is, looking back, there are but a few decisions I made for which the consequences were more than momentary.

This is life in a nutshell. Most of the time, people go about deciding things and acting on those choices made with little to no effect on their long-term health or happiness.

When that’s not the case though, when the option selected has long term ramifications, if it lacks some sort of immutable time constraint—sometimes even if it appears to have one—making it without hesitation is typically not wise.

This is a lesson it’s taken me many years to learn.

I can’t tell you how many times I reached a branch in the road—do this or do that—and came to the errant conclusion I had to choose a path, without taking a reasonable amount of time to weigh out my possibilities before moving down the road. Sometimes the results were fine or even great, sometimes anything but good.

Again, most of the time, taking one path or the other wasn’t all that significant, but sometimes, when it seemed like what I opted for wasn’t an earth-shattering thing, I found it actually was.

The result is, I tend to be generally slower in making even what appear to be minor course corrections these days. Because that’s true, at present, my actions tend to be much better considered.

I’m not going to say that always makes a great deal of difference, but I think if you’re prone to make snap decisions, you’d be amazed how much of the time you’d save yourself grief by taking that extra moment to think about what you’re doing.

It may be something as simple as choosing a different route to get where I’m going. It could be something like, taking a moment to think about buying something, and deciding I want to do so, or that it’s not worth it.

So when I heard about the young individual recently, who took the life of another, even younger individual not days ago, and saw the headline in which he essentially said, “I had no choice…” when queried regarding his actions, you can be certain the result was alarm bells going off in my head.

I get it, there’re times when a person is put in what is often termed a “no-win situation.”

I know though, that most of the time, there were decisions made before that occurred, that led to the fateful moment.

In this case, there were cameras attached to recording devices, which depending on your perspective, is a very good, or a very bad thing.

For the shooter in this case, I would argue it was not so great. For the rest of us, it was probably a good deal better.

I’ve said before, and maintain now, that jumping to conclusions—even when video evidence is presented—is not a good idea. I’m not willing to say the shooter was absolutely at fault.

Asked my opinion, I would be inclined to say it was on him to explain the situation—to tell me how what I saw was wrong.

Unfortunately, that’ll never happen. The man having killed the other, got into some sort of altercation with law enforcement trying to arrest him over his actions, that resulted in his death.

Guilty of murder or not, killed under reasonable circumstances by the police or other agency, or unreasonable, it’s still a sad moment when a man loses his life. He’s never coming back.

I know you can say the same for the person who may’ve been his victim, and I’m not arguing that’s at all unreasonable. In fact, yet again, whether the young man initially killed, did something untoward or not, his death is an entirely tragic event.

The fact that it appears he did nothing wrong makes it so—if what seems to have happened is true—the first death is just a little sadder to me, than the second. If he actually did do something that would make his killer’s claim of self defense reasonable, I suppose I could say the same thing of the second man who died.

In any case though, the loss of a life is something family, friends and even acquaintances may never get over.

It’s for this type of reason, that I tend to have changed my position on snap judgment. Call me crazy, but it seems to me all of this could’ve been avoided.

I want to make it clear that this whole thing appears to have started with folks on the left, Antifa and Black Lives Matter folks in particular.

How can I come to that conclusion? To begin with, the left-leaning folks were the ones running around protesting, rioting and looting. The folks on the right came into the situation after the folks on the left did.

Additionally, the young man first deceased, was apparently in the area in which he lived. That means, unless he came to the conclusion it was unsafe to be in his own neighborhood, he had every right to be where he was. Frankly, he had every right regardless that. Because he was in his stomping grounds, any confrontation that occurred, was between a resident (himself) and an outsider (the man who killed him).

As stated, this makes it plain to me that choices were made, at least on the first shooter’s part, before the critical ones that occurred, that look for all the world to have been horribly bad.

Perhaps something will come to light to change my opinion, but at present, that’s my position, for as much as it matters.

In finality though, the point of this little essay is this. You may think small things you do without much consideration, don’t matter a lot. In the end, it’s possible you’ll find they lead you down life-or-death paths, if you don’t take the time to make the right decisions.

Thanks for reading, and may your time be good.

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