In thinking of the controversy surrounding the coexist bumper sticker, as well as
comments made by Daniel over at GOP3.com – not to mention his own ham-handed attempt at a “CONVERT” bumper sticker – I’m reminded of one of my favorite passages from the Bible:
“Thou shalt not hate thy brother in thine heart: thou shalt in any wise rebuke [reason with] thy neighbour, and not suffer sin upon him.
Thou shalt not avenge, nor bear any grudge against the children of thy people, but thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself: I am the Lord.”
— Leviticus 19: 17-18 (KJV)
In this passage originates a powerful idea: that you should treat your fellow as you yourself would be treated. This is perhaps the oldest definition of empathy, and it’s something folks like young Daniel from GOP3 and all the right-wing talking heads here in southeastern Wisconsin would be wise to keep in their minds and hearts.