Who Are We to Say that Lance Was Wrong?

Last Wednesday while my bakkie rolled toward town for my weekly trip I listened to Feisel call into the national radio station, SAFM, to air his thoughts on their open line.

“Look, I don’t know what everyone’s getting upset about with Lance Armstrong. He did what everyone in that sport does.” Etc., etc.

The surprised announcer laughed out some question about whether we should change the rules for everyone. Lance broke the rules, and Mr. SAFM (and probably the vast majority of the listening audience) thought he should pay for the liberty he took.

Feisel however, was much more malleable. And I’m glad he called. At least he was trying to be—to a point—consistent.

If we can’t keep a rule, or if a fairly large segment of the population doesn’t like it, then let’s just let our legislation be honest with our action. Drop the rules that we don’t keep.

Is this not the situation that confronts us all today?

There is an obvious law that says, “Mothers should love their babies.” If a mother does not love her child, she has broken that rule known to all men because it is preprogrammed on our hard drives. But when that law conflicts with my strong desire to pursue my girlfriends or my voting block, then I will be faster than a speeding locomotive and able to leap over tall buildings in a single bound to justify a mother’s right to murder her baby. On average since I arrived in SA in 2004 well over 200 babies per day in this country have been murdered with consent of their mothers.

Or, we all know—in such a basic way that we don’t even think of it as a law, but of course it is—that a husband should be faithful to his wife in thought and action. Until he’s really tired of her because she’s not as perky as the latest wench who’s caught his eye. So says our inherently contradictory and ultimately inconsistent world. This law is broken repeatedly in divorce courts.

And we could expand our list of ways that the contemporary world not only breaks obvious rules, but revels in law-breaking. What I was reminded of so poignantly by Feisel’s call last week was that we are not law breakers when it comes to something we really care about. When it comes to our highest commitments—like sports—we will deal with criminals because of our love affair with pleasure and entertainment.

We live in a world of law breakers who incredulously gasp when someone implies that we should live as lawbreakers in all categories of life. Could it be that the essence of sin is inconsistency?

Nice wake up call, Feisel.

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