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Where have all of the Masons gone?

Brother Jason Eddy

Registered User
The political landscape has become increasingly hostile over the last few months. Presidential debates are airing. Campaigning has begun on issues covering everything from school levies to the presidency. To the surprise of none of us, a majority of these ads, signs and speeches are infested with slander, hypocrisy and negativity. It is much more the rule than the exception in American politics that candidates do not run a campaign based on their qualifications, but rather the lack of qualifications that can be attributed to their opponent. This leads to division and bitter partisanship amongst voters and they quickly follow suit in attacking not only the opponent of the person they support, but that person’s supporters as well. Being honest, though, this is not what is bothering me. What is bothering me is the behavior of my fellow Masons and the effects that their behavior has on the public’s perception of what kind of man makes a Mason.

As Masons, we are taught to be good men and True. We are also taught to exercise Brotherly Love and by extension, Tolerance. The petty arguments and harsh words that I have seen from my Brothers in the last few weeks show a serious lack of both Brotherly Love and Tolerance. We are charged to view the entire human species as one family. We are taught to aid, support and protect each other. How does name calling and the use of hurtful insults apply to anything Masonic? It does not. We are members of a fraternal Order that allows the admittance of men from every country, sect and opinion. We sit side by side with men who worship as Muslims, Christians, Jews, Hindus and many others. We do so respectfully and with civility. We do not have to agree with his views, but we do need to respect them. That is what I feel is missing. Respect. Enlightenment figure Voltaire once said “I do not agree with what you say, but I will defend to the death your right to say it.†That is the true character of a Mason. We do not have to agree with our Brothers, but when we disagree it should be done with civility and respect.
I ask that all of my Brothers involved in political discussions, or any discussion, to remember the lessons taught to the newly initiated Entered Apprentice. Take a good long look at the working tools you have been provided, particularly the Common Gavel and act accordingly. You are not only painting yourself as less than a gentleman, but by association that of all of your Brothers.

It is the mark of an educated mind to be able to entertain a thought without accepting it. ~Aristotle