Matt Lewis, of Daily Caller fame, has an opinion piece that offers a very interesting take on the George Zimmerman verdict.
But here’s the thing. In a sense, George Zimmerman was — at least up until the moments surrounding that fateful shot — arguably doing what we tell responsible citizens to do: Care about your community, and take personal responsibility for the betterment of it.
To be sure, he was overzealous. It’s one thing to call the police, and another to get out of your car and engage in a confrontation, especially when you have a gun with you. But we always say things like, “This is your community” and “You are responsible for it.” Do we really mean it?
Of course, this speaks to a larger societal trend. Community bonds have frayed over time. People used to get together to play cards, join fraternal orders and civic associations, and socialize with the neighbors. This was good and bad. It also meant nosy neighbors, less privacy, and more gossip. But if something happened in the neighborhood, somebody would step in. If some kids (race here is irrelevant) were playing loud music, some old guy would tell them to shut the hell up.
It’s easy to be nostalgic about this. Again, there were good and bad things associated with this. And there is much to be said for the anonymity (never mind opportunity) of modern city life. But there is also something lost. We are all bowling alone.
Matt goes on to talk about how this insularity is not the best of outcomes.
But let’s not talk about what we do. Let’s discuss what we ought to do in the context of faith and community.