June 5, 2020 - Inhumane

When I woke up this morning and thought about how we as human beings can so easily mistreat one another and feel no remorse or sorrow, it concerned me. For over 400 years we have been a race of people who have had to suffer and be mistreated inhumanely by the hands of another race of people. In many instances, human beings will treat animals better than they treat human beings. This is not just a statement regarding one race mistreating another, rather we as a race of people must learn how to treat each other. We must stop the killings!     

When I watched a Buffalo, New York police officer push a 75 year old protester to the concrete sidewalk and leave him there bleeding, the word inhumane crossed my mind. It appeared that the 75 year old man was reaching out to the officer as a gesture of unity. More disgusting was the fact that all the other members of this group of police passed him by without providing any assistance. There was one officer who attempted to provide assistance, but the pressure from his colleagues and superior officer caused him to move on.  As Rev. Al Sharpton mentioned in an interview this morning, it reminded him of the story in the Bible of the Good Samaritan. The parable is about a traveler who is stripped of clothing, beaten and left for dead on the side of the road. We know the story very well as to how a Priest and Levite passed him by as he lay in the ditch. It was the unexpected Good Samaritan who stopped to provide help.  

In Luke chapter 10, Jesus is asked, "What is the most important commandment?" He responds that the greatest commandment is to "love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your mind, and the second is to love your neighbor as yourself."  This story suggests to us that we should love our neighbors as ourselves. When we see others that are in need, like the 75 year old man or the man that was beaten by robbers on the road, our love for each other is tested. But Jesus instructs us to be like the Good Samaritan helping others and loving others who are in need.

As we continue to speak about police officers, we must be reminded that there are just a small percentage of officers who are bad. Just like any other professions, there are those who serve well and those who serve poorly. Bottom line to this story is that it was a despicable act.

It is unconscionable to watch so many cases of one human being mistreating another during this season of protesting and covid-19. Every day there is an act of inhumanity that causes one to take a deep breath or shed a tear.

We have concentrated primarily on the inhumane treatment George Floyd received by a white police officer, but it goes much deeper than Mr. Floyd. In his case, one human places a knee on the neck of another human for approximately 9 minutes until Mr. Floyd dies.

Those in leadership positions who remain silent about the inhumane treatment and brutality of African Americans and people of color during this time of protesting is inhumane. Silence in my opinion is a sign or gesture of approval and acceptance.

Seeing Australian reporters attacked by the US police was also an act of inhumanity. It causes one to ponder, "How can one human being mistreat another human in such a disgraceful manner?"  Watching a young man gunned down in the street of Georgia is proof of being inhumane. A young lady, Breonna Taylor, while in her home being shot 8 times and killed by an officer sends chills up my spine.

May we learn how to treat all people with respect and dignity!

"Beloved, let us love one another for love is from God, and whoever loves has been born of God and knows God." 1 John 4:7             

Not a sermon, just a thought!

Robert Earl Slade, Pastor