Moses, David and CNN



I am watching “Larry King Live” and – as usual- some celebrity is being interviewed. (Last night it was Tammy Faye Bakker, and her fight with stage 4 lung cancer.) Tonight the discussion is with the wife of Jeffrey MacDonald (convicted of killing his former wife and two children several years ago). I gather that recent DNA evidence is shedding new light on the case. Of course Kathryn MacDonald,(#2 wife), has never doubted Jeffrey’s innocence. Barry Sheck (the attorney) insists that a new trial is needed, that there is substantial evidence to clear his client of all wrongdoing…blah blah.. If successful, I’m sure that there will be a lawsuit for wrongful conviction. I am amazed..and then it hits me. How many people sit forgotten, unsung, dying of lung cancers and languishing in unjust prisons because Larry is not there to fight for them? If we see it on CNN it has to be true- right? After all, CNN is “the most trusted name in news”. I wonder what life would be like today if CNN had been there to report on the exodus from Egypt. Perhaps there would have been a photo collage of Moshe, highlighting his early days as a royal, his fall from grace after the impassioned slaying of a ‘fellow Egyptian’, his long sojourne in the desert as he “hit bottom” (economically speaking), culminating with his epiphany and conversations with a burning shrubbery. There would have been a panel of experts discussing Moshe’s mental state and debating about the origins and etiology of his Divine directives. Moshe would have been questioned about his high school sweetheart, and a full retrospective investigation into the death of the Egyptian would have been carried out. Come to think of it, I can also imagine journalists interviewing King David after his confrontation with Nathan the prophet. There would have been multiple replays of the famous “you are that man” as Nathan skewers David to the wall……
This really is too silly. But honestly, what does the popular obsession with celebrity say about the health of our collective soul? Does something or someone become authentic, valued, worthy of love and esteem because of propaganda or inherent virtue? As the “Coffee Crisp” commercial says “just because you say it doesn’t make it so”. The fickleness and politic of human nature is blaringly obvious in the pages of history. The tide of public opinion turns in a heartbeat as adoring fans become inflamed and murderous tyrants. North Amercians are well known for creating idols and smashing them simultaneously. In the present moment, there are victims, oppressors, heroes, and villians that never make the pages of any newspaper or radio/television program. It is all about being ‘in the right (or wrong) place at the right time’, and being noticed by the important people. The same people who document baby condors as they are fed by condor puppets, follow the tragic disappearances of single white females, and exalt the issues of every controversial subject imaginable, thus confirming the conviction that “if it bleeds it leads”. And yet, still waters exist. Green pasture is an option if we are willing. God still shepherds the weary.

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