The problem with the world is too many of us want our way. Some of us more than others. We all seem to want to control others. Some of us more than others. We do this probably with an evolutionary need to create order. To move beyond an evolutionary need is difficult at best. But the need to is obvious.
If we are ever to create peace in our world our need to control others will be by necessity ended. For centuries some of us thought it was their divine rule to control the masses. Although America rid itself of kings and dictators these were too often replaced with the elite rich and academia, politicians, and religious leaders. Of course, none of these even ‘God’s Order’ are infallible. We all have our biases, fears mean streaks, power needs and so forth. All of which make our vision of order less clear. You have to be infallible to make right decisions especially when others are concerned. It does not matter if you have an infallible text to proclaim your self right. The text is interpreted by a fallible person. The interpreter, more often than not, is too enmeshed in their culture, family, ethnic, nation, region, and so forth to see entirely clear. What was it Paul said For now we see through a glass, darkly; but then face to face: now I know in part; I Corinthians 13:12. In other words are glass is only filled half-way with truth.
Any order we wish to place on others and our selves will only be half measures of what is true. But there are those who claim they have way more of the truth than the rest of us. They believe they can tell us how we should live and order our lives.
Yet the truth is more complicated than that. We do need some order in the world. The question is how much and about what. We need some rules to create order. The founding fathers and mothers put in the Constitution several safeguards to prevent the wrong kind of order being placed on us. The first was a system of check and balances. This never left one particular group, even those who might be elected, take total control. The legislature may legislate and the President may veto but his veto may be overturned with a two third majority. And even if the legislature overrules the veto of the president he is the enforcer of the law and could choose how stringent the law would be enforced. If both President and the legislators agree the Supreme Court has the right to decide if it goes afoul of the Constitution. They could say the law is unconstitutional and thereby nullify the law. Now if the legislature dislikes the Supreme Court decision they could legislate something closer to the Constitution or they could add an amendment to the constitution. A proposed amendment must be passed by two-thirds of both houses of Congress, then ratified by the legislatures of three-fourths of the states. So now the three branches are no longer the lone decision makers but a fourth group who have various needs are brought into the process. On top of all these checks and balances do not forget that the populace votes for all legislators and the President on both the federal and state levels. Wow the forefathers were deeply concerned about its future citizens forcing order unduly unto others.
Yet many today are convinced they know the way. And know what you should or should not be doing. Maybe a little humility is needed when we feel a need to impose order on others. What would be the guidelines for creating order. Here are a few suggestions.
The first borrows from the Hippocratic Oath ‘Do no harm’. You should never intervene (offer treatment) in another’s life to enforce your beliefs.
Another would be respect the dignity and inherent worth of all. No one is to be valued less. Everyone is to be valued and accepted not merely tolerated. Toleration leads to the openness to order someone else’s life.
Order that puts restrictions on others must only be applied if you are directly feeling harm from others. You are not to do harm and they are not allowed to do harm.
If you have Rights for any they are for all not some. There is no privilege class. Certainly, if you have advanced training you may be able to do some things others can not but that training must be available to all.
To those who wish to add order to others remember two things: First, before you control another take the beam out of your own lives before you try to remove the speck from someone’s life. Secondly, do unto others as you would have them do unto you.