The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge, Prince William and Kate, visited New York recently. The press showed its usual fascination with royalty, but their interest centered on the fact that Kate is about five months pregnant with the royal couple’s second child. The press referred repeatedly and playfully to the Duchess’s “baby bump.”
In writing about their visit, Katrina Trenko, managing editor of the Daily Signal, noted “At this stage, the baby has a heart, a face, a brain and fingernails.” And yet, she went on to explain, the United States and Canada are among the seven countries of the world, including China and North Korea, that allow elective abortions after 20 weeks.
The press’s excitement over the developing royal baby, on the one hand, and on the other the law’s protection of the “right” to abort and discard unwanted babies at will, hints sharply at the double-standards of a people.
Some say, “So what? The Supreme Court made a judgment about abortions nearly 42 years ago; Get over it; society changes.”
Others say, “Not so fast; from Judeo-Christian morality and/ or an innate sense of the sanctity of life, they believe neither the Supreme Court nor any other human institution has the authority to create a “right” to end human life, even while it is in its developing stage. One could note that such a moral double-standard seems also to have spread to other areas in our society.
For example, many still celebrate the genius of their nation’s Constitution, while others appear to look on approvingly when that constitution is seriously circumvented.
In other areas we hear occasional news reports of leaders working under a job description, a board, a constitution, or leadership vows, who take liberties or act in ways expressly forbidden by the organizational laws they are bound to uphold. Think Skilling at Enron and Madoff on Wall Street; Lerner at the IRS, Neely at the GSA; and Driscoll and others in the church. Each had their promoters and detractors reflecting the double standard.
If one is on the side of order and integrity, is it going too far to wonder thus: Have the laws that govern us and our institutions come to be seen by many leaders as merely suggestions? Can it be that some leaders believe it unimportant to read and understand bylaws or constitutions and even Roberts Rules of Order?
Yet, might it also be that there are stirrings everywhere of discontent with such operational and moral casualness? Might it be that 2015 will swing the pendulum back toward favoring not only babies of Dukes and Duchesses, but favoring those developing in every womb? Can we raise our prayers and our voices so as to heal the wounds of lawlessness and corruption in government, business and the church?
Above all, perhaps Christian organizations everywhere will lead the way this year by asking themselves: are we strong in our commitment to bylaws, constitutions, principle and meticulous processes, so that institutional wounds can be healed? Can the church be first to swing the pendulum back to regular order, and can we see this as required by the Lord we serve, who makes all things new and leads us always upward?
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