The Law of the (American) Jungle

I’ve seen lots of videos of the animals of Africa, where we can see the daily struggle of life against death. It is gruesome — yet somehow fascinating — to see helpless animals being eaten alive. The law of the jungle, we are told, is survival of the fittest. The strong dominate the weak and we wouldn’t expect it to be otherwise.

Humans, physically speaking, are animals, created from the “dust of the earth,” as the Bible puts it. Spiritually, however, we are much more than sentient dust. We have risen above the inevitable ways of the animal kingdom and are no longer enslaved to the law of the jungle. The mark of civilization is that we care for and protect the weak and believe that “all [persons] are created equal.”

By that definition, one has to ask, Is the Republican party civilized to any high degree? The party clearly is committed to favoring the strong and restraining the weak. They use propaganda as a subterfuge, claiming that the strong (i.e. the wealthy, since they measure all reality by economics) are the job creators and therefore favoring the strong will eventually benefit the poor.

I no longer believe an honest person can hold such a view. The last seven years have demonstrated very clearly that views of “trickle down” economics are simply blind to reality. Any political perspective which fails to see and deal with the fact that the wealthy have gotten absurdly wealthy at the expense of the middle class and of the poor is fundamentally fraudulent.

The jungle may favor the strong but civilization need not and must not live by jungle rules. We are more than dust; we are created in the image of God and are therefore persons of inherent dignity. All of us. Each of us.


About mthayes42

I am a retired pastor, interested in the Bible, cross-cultural ministries, Dietrich Bonhoeffer, and the current and past history of western civilization.
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