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Next stop: Crazy Town

Posted: Monday, July 25, 2016 | Alphonso Ashworth | Pop Culture

Most of us have passed by or may have even had a brief stay in Crazy Town, USA. Some never leave. What is the appeal of a place that seems to be governed by Looney Tunes characters? And why have we become so fascinated by people who are perfectly comfortable in their straitjackets?

With the proliferation of the 24/7 news circle that is social media, we don't have to walk or drive to Crazy Town anymore; we are simply one mouse click away from being on its Main Street. We roam the neighborhoods, and before we realize where we are, we are trapped, trying to dodge potholes filled with innuendos, gossip, and lies.

I admit it can be entertaining. But let's examine what we now call entertainment: He said/she said stories, nudity, sexual exploitation, murder, gang fights, children being abused, and imagery that would shock your grandparents.

Our culture has been desensitized and reprogrammed. The new source code allows us to disrespect others’ privacy, and with a camera in every hand, we can post and share at the speed of an Internet connection. For better or worse, no citizen is exempt.

Police shootings and crime sprees are passed around as though it is horror movie night and the entire world is invited free of charge. A mother grieving the loss of her child becomes exculpatory evidence of some perpetrator. Facts don't matter. Lives don't matter. Nothing seems to matter. The winner is determined by who has the most likes and shares, and before the computer fan can slow down, the jury of public opinion has ruled guilty or not guilty.

Although Christians are supposed to be the light that guides those lost in a dark world, many have dropped their torches and have been seen running as fast as their legs will carry them toward Crazy Town. I can't tell you how many comments I have read in Crazy Town's news, comments that begin with, "I am a Christian" and end with some derogatory phrase or hashtag. And if someone calls them out, "Don't judge me!" is their response.

What?

Let's see what the Holy Bible tells us about loitering in places like Crazy Town. Proverbs, one of my favorite books in the Bible, is full of passages that warn us about associating with people who lie and gossip:

"He who goes about as a slanderer reveals secrets. Therefore do not associate with a gossip." – Proverbs 20:19

Similarly, Psalm 34:13 reads, "Keep your tongue from evil and your lips from speaking deceit."

This also applies to your fingers. It goes without saying that God does not like for His children to partake in such behavior. Paul, an apostle of Christ, reiterated this in the book of Romans:

“And even as they did not like to retain God in their knowledge, God gave them over to a reprobate mind, to do those things which are not convenient; Being filled with all unrighteousness, fornication, wickedness, covetousness, maliciousness; full of envy, murder, debate, deceit, malignity; whisperers, Backbiters, haters of God, despiteful, proud, boasters, inventors of evil things, disobedient to parents, Without understanding, covenant breakers, without natural affection, implacable, unmerciful: Who knowing the judgment of God, that they which commit such things are worthy of death, not only do the same, but have pleasure in them that do them.” – Romans 1:28-32

So the next time you see an exit to Crazy Town, think on these verses and remember that if you can't be a good example, then you may become a horrible warning.