Criticism: The tonic for keeping the world a little saner

RTP Isaac Kyei Andoh Isaac Kyei Andoh, writer

Tue, 27 Feb 2018 Source: Isaac Kyei Andoh

Sometimes, people with sin must throw the first stone and call other people to order. Usually, Jesus' issue with the woman who was about being stoned by the Pharisees for fornication is misapplied to give people the FREEDOM to live without being shaped by society.

When you condemn the wrong of people, they are quick to quote: ‘he who is without sin should throw the first stone’

It is one thing to pass a verdict of destruction on people without giving them the chance to repentance and another to tell people to change their ways when on the wrong course. The difference between Jesus and the Pharisees was that He gave the woman a second chance but they didn't. He warned her to go and sin no more to tell us that He does not condone breaking rules.

Unfortunately, in this debased society, people want to quote Jesus wrongly to encourage wrongdoing. People should be criticised when in wrong. People should live with the knowledge of what society frowns upon and be guided by that.

If we all go by waiting to be perfect before telling people to STOP FOOLING, then we are going to hurt our world and destroy the conscience that places limitation on even the worst of criminals

God wants us to be each other’s keeper and that includes calling people going astray to order.

Thou shall not judge simply means thou shall not declare another hopeless. We criticise because we know people can be fixed.

We won't wait until we are perfect before doing it. God made human judges, he made humans leaders not because we are perfect but because even in our imperfection, we know how to side with what's right. A gay can call an armed robber to order, an armed robber can call a prostitute to order, a prostitute can call a liar to order. Hypocrisy is when a thief criticises another thief and when a thief criticises a liar.

We all have our weaknesses but with equal responsibility of being a check on each other

The material world is ruled by imperfect humans each empowered by God to bring sanity to their circles whilst fixing their own shortcomings.

If you can't bite, don't bite those who bite: they are the reason why people watch their steps. When we get to the place where no one cares about the other, we are doomed.

That is where 'the see no evil, say no evil' people who are quick to criticise those who condemn wrongdoing want us to be. When you see a wrong you can correct, you become an accomplice if you allow it to fester without correcting it.

Only mad people don't care about what people do and what people think about what they do.

As a sane person, sometimes, society must be able to stop you from doing certain things: like walking half naked on the street.

With the above said, those who choose to criticise or speak against any wrongdoing should be guided by love and the genuine desire to better the person. We are not the judges of people to pass verdict on them, we are just each other’s keeper with the responsibility of shaping ourselves in love. It is a circle, the person criticised for going wrong today, also has a responsibility of correcting others tomorrow.

Those who try to keep quiet through it all must learn to shut up and allow people gone wrong redirected by those who won’t keep quiet.

If we admit that when people do well they should be praised and honoured, then we should come to the collective agreement that we will equally bring people going off tangent back on track.

This is what will happen if we reach a collective agreement to allow people live anyhow they please without calling them to order: the strong will abuse the weak, same-sex marriage will thrive, people will have sex in the open, people will walk the street naked, drunkenness will dominate, corruption will be an open activity and crime rate will get even higher. If this is what our silence means, then right-thinking members can’t and won’t keep quiet.

Every human is incapable of being as bad as he can possibly be because society puts breaks on how far they can go. Even that hard-core murderer is capable of worst. Every man is stopped at a point by society. If no one matters to you, if you are the only person whose opinion matters to you, then you are close to pressing the self-destruction button.

In this country, there is the tendency to tag people who disagree and criticise as enemies. Those who sing praises all the time and contrive to find no fault where fault is are called friends with the others sometimes alienated for saying it as it is.

We have to grow, we have to accept that there are crowds of witnesses over our lives, they owe us the duty of making us better. That includes praising when we do well, encouraging us when we are down and calling us to order when we on the wrong course.

It’s all about balance and knowing which knob to press at what time.

To those who are quick to condemn people for criticizing others, know that criticising a person for criticising another is criticism too.

Columnist: Isaac Kyei Andoh