In what’s being hailed as an historic recall election, San Francisco voters on Tuesday ousted District Attorney Chesa Boudin – a far left figure whose policies many believe have led to a dramatic spike in city crime.
Nima Rahimi of the California Democrat Party Executive Board recently opined: “Personally, I believe Boudin harms our party’s goals on criminal justice reform, in part, because people have died and will continue to die as a result of his choices and his policies. We have to hold our own accountable.”
From big cities like San Francisco to smaller school boards around the country, a common theme has been emerging. Frustrated citizens are becoming irritated voters. Weary and alarmed by the consequences of radical policies, they’re voicing their objections by voting, saying, in effect, “Enough is enough!”
The years roll on, but some things never change.
It was Plato who once observed, “Excess generally causes reaction, and produces a change in the opposite direction, whether it be in the seasons, or in individuals, or in governments.”
The Scriptures repeatedly warn about the dangers of having too much or going too far. Even too much of a good thing quickly makes the good thing bad.
“If you have found honey, eat only enough for you,” we read in Proverbs, “lest you have your fill of it and vomit it” (Proverbs 25:16).
When the apostle Paul writes to the church in Corinth and warns of sexual immorality, greed, idolatry, drunkenness and swindling – he’s acknowledging the human tendency to go too far and want too much (1 Cor. 5:11).
Managing power and possessions is an age-old challenge. “How much money is enough?” a reporter once asked the industrialist John D. Rockefeller. He replied, “Just a little bit more.”
We need water to live, or we’ll die of dehydration. But if we drink too much, our brains will literally drown, and we’ll die. When it’s cold, a fire can keep us warm – but get too close and we’ll burn.
Political swings are the norm, of course. The public gets weary of people and parties, often because the parties and people grow too comfortable – and go too far.
Moderation is often lampooned and mocked in politics, sometimes because a politician seems to want to walk the middle of the road, refusing to take a definite position on key, controversial issues. The criticism can be valid. When it comes to God’s laws pertaining to life, human sexuality, marriage and abortion, there is no middle ground. Morality is not negotiable, nor is it grey.
But mature Christian believers practice a soberness of spirit when it comes to many other things. That’s because we recognize fallen man and his tendency to overcorrect, overreach and overdo it.
Thankfully, our Founding Fathers, many of whom revered the Scriptures and recognized mankind’s foibles and frailties, devised a system that would allow the electorate to course correct every few years – and even sooner, if necessary.
We need to continue praying the Lord will raise up good men and women to help right the ship of state – and give discernment to the electorate to cast ballots for the best of an admittedly imperfect lot.
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