Matthew 7: 3-5 reads “Why do you look at the speck of sawdust in your brother’s eye and pay no attention to the plank in your own eye? How can you say to your brother ‘Let me take the speck out of your eye’ when all the time there is a plank in your own eye? You hypocrite, first take the plank out of your own eye, and then you will see more clearly to remove the speck from your brother’s eye.”
This scripture came to my mind as I was thinking about the recent controversy surrounding a young man who was in Washington, DC for the annual March for Life and has ended up as a nationwide and possibly worldwide symbol of hate and bigotry. A few seconds of a video that went viral shows him smirking and supposedly mocking a Native American man playing a drum who was standing in front of him. The boy in question was also wearing a red MAGA (Make America Great Again) hat. This young man has had to deal with the obligatory onslaught of condemnation and in some cases threats from a variety of celebrities, media personalities and everyday people who want to show that this type of behavior is unacceptable and it won’t be tolerated.
Now fast forward and we now know there was more to the video then meets the eye. The video didn’t initially show a group of men yelling at him and his classmates. Their verbal assault started because they were wearing the MAGA hats which some have now labeled a symbol of hatred and oppression. Opponents of the boys have equated their treatment to that of young black men who have been stereotyped as thugs for wearing hoodies.
The point I want to make is that behaving in the same way as those who you believe have oppressed or are oppressing you makes you no better than them. The person who thinks wearing a MAGA hat makes you racist is no different then the person who calls the police on a black boy wearing a hoodie because they think he’s a thug. The same fears and prejudice are being espoused.
Now I can’t say what is in anyone’s heart but a truth to live by is if you don’t want someone to judge you based on how you look or dress you shouldn’t do it to others. We are all distinct and should be treated that way. Let God’s mercy and grace be guides for us as we navigate through this temporary life on our way to eternity with Him.