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Alive in this Culture of Death

Updated on April 24, 2010
Cari Jean profile image

Cari Jean is a freelance writer and author. Her inspiring memoir "Having Faith" is available on Amazon. She resides in North Dakota.

Death lurks around every corner of this country and you must be blind if you do not see it. People killing strangers, killing family members, killing children, killing themselves. Murder is not just a thing of entertainment. It no longer happens in just the big cities. It happens in small, rural communities where people have not always locked their doors because they thought they were safe. It happens in places of business when a disgruntled employee takes it out on his boss and coworkers. Sadly, it also happens in our children's schools and even in places of worship. Even though a human being killing another human being is a horrific act, I believe these means of killing does not perpetuate this culture of death in which we live. Instead, it is the other way around, the culture of death perpetuates these everyday shootings, stabbings, beatings, suicides....

ugly and dead
ugly and dead

The Culture of Death

What is this 'culture of death'? According to dictionary.com one definition of the word culture is the behaviors and beliefs characteristic of a particular social, ethnic, or age group. More and more each day our society seems to have a belief that death is better than life, as is demonstrated through the behaviors of our society. The culture of death rears its ugly head every time someone decides to play God, thinking they know best whether one lives or dies. This culture of death begins at the embryo and like a snake it slithers up to strike the terminally ill and the elderly. Scientists do research on embryonic stem cells hoping to find cures for incurable diseases. Mothers do prenatal testing to see if their baby is going to be healthy - and when they are found to have down syndrome or some other disability they decide that life is not worth birthing. Radical abortion doctors end third trimester pregnancies because the mother decides this baby will be an inconvenience. Judges decide that feeding tubes should be removed for those in vegetative states. People facing a terminal illness opt for assisted suicide or euthanasia because they want to die with “dignity.”

Where does this mentality come from? Some people say it stems from Nazi Germany and Hitler himself. He said killing the weak and undesirable is the “final solution.” When Hitler was in power, his way of thinking was deplorable to the free world. But in 1973, after Roe v Wade, this Hitlerite way of thinking found its way into our country and an inconvenient pregnancy’s “final solution” became abortion.

The Culture of Life

During a tour of the United States in 1993, Pope John Paul II, was the first to use the expression, "culture of life." In denouncing abortion and euthanasia he said, "The culture of life means respect for nature and protection of God's work of creation. In a special way, it means respect for human life from the first moment of conception until its natural end." Cardinal Bernard Law urged Americans to "spread the culture of life over the culture of death".

Thankfully, we have had pro-life leaders who have tried to overcome the culture of death by making pro-life decisions for our country. For example, President George W. Bush kept his promises to the pro-life community. His nominations of John Roberts and Samuel Alito to the Supreme Court helped to uphold the ban on partial-birth abortion. Under his presidency, the Born Alive Infant Protection Act was passed. The law protects infants from failed abortions. Bush also kept in place the National Institutes of Health guidelines for embryonic stem-cell research which prohibit federal money from being used to kill or create embryos for research.

The Antithesis of President Bush

Unfortunately, due to many liberals, including President Obama, who seem to embrace the culture of death, everything the pro-life community has fought so hard for could be lost. We have already seen and heard Hitlerite views gaining ground. In an April 28, 2009 New York Times interview, President Obama discussed having a "very difficult democratic conversation" about "those toward the end of their lives [who] are accounting for potentially 80 percent of the total health care bill out here.” Some have proposed that because of this statement, his “final solution” to soaring health care costs could be euthanasia or assisted suicide. President Obama has also been known to support infanticide and did not want the Born Alive Infant Protection Act to pass. Another drawback is the confirmation of Sotomayor to the Supreme Court. Clearly, she is not a constructionist and is known to have pro-abortion views. It seems our President is doing everything he can to ensure this culture of death remain alive and well in our society.

Jesus is Victorious over Death
Jesus is Victorious over Death

Life Over Death

What can we, who stand for life, do while this culture of death seeks to snuff out something that we hold very dear to our hearts? Many are attending town hall meetings and are speaking out against healthcare reform. Others are getting more involved in their community and state pro-life programs. Some are writing letters to the editor. This is all good and we need to make our voices heard and make our beliefs known. But one more thing we have to do, maybe the most important of all, is to pray.

Through prayer, hearts can be changed. It is more important than ever that we pray for our national leaders. But it’s not only our leaders who need prayer - we need to pray for all who stand up for and accept living in a culture of death. We need to pray for our friends, family, the people we go to church with, our children - that they would all embrace life, not death.

With the majority of Americans calling themselves Christians, you would think the culture of death would not be as prevalent in this country as it is. After all, Christians are to follow the teachings of Jesus Christ who said, I am the way the truth and the life (John 14:6). He also said, if anyone keeps my word, he will never see death (John 8:51). Throughout the New Testament, Jesus constantly talked about life. Jesus IS life. If we all lived accordingly, maybe this culture of death would finally die.

Do You Believe We Live in a Culture of Death?

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    • Cari Jean profile imageAUTHOR

      Cari Jean 

      7 years ago from Bismarck, ND

      marwan asmar - thanks for stopping by!

    • marwan asmar profile image

      Marwan Asmar 

      7 years ago from Amman, Jordan

      Very interesting topic.........

    • Cari Jean profile imageAUTHOR

      Cari Jean 

      7 years ago from Bismarck, ND

      angel - thanks so much for your comment. I'll have to check out your hubs as well!

    • angel115707 profile image

      Angel Ward 

      7 years ago from Galveston, TX

      Love this hub, so glad to see another writing on this topic!!!

    • Cari Jean profile imageAUTHOR

      Cari Jean 

      8 years ago from Bismarck, ND

      dreamreachout - thanks for your comment.

    • Cari Jean profile imageAUTHOR

      Cari Jean 

      8 years ago from Bismarck, ND

      magnoliazz - hmmmm, you've given me some things to think about. I do struggle with the end-of-life issues. I agree that they shouldn't be given unnecessary, painful tests when it's not really going to benefit them, I do however, disagree with assisted suicide and euthanasia. In these instances I think it is better for them to die naturally, though I know sometimes this includes being in pain. But like you said, their pain should be managed.

      Thanks for sharing your thoughts on this subject.

    • profile image

      dreamreachout 

      8 years ago

      Wonderful hub!! magnoliazz comments are even better!!

    • magnoliazz profile image

      magnoliazz 

      8 years ago from Wisconsin

      Satan=death, Jesus=Life!

      I find myself in a agreement with you Cari.

      However, there are a few things I would like to say about end of life care.

      First, let us not forget that much of the medical care you get revolves around money! Hospitals and doctors are there to make money, first and foremost, always keep that in mind.

      Of course they are going to go whole hog at the end of a person's life. Test after test will still be done, even if it causes great pain and suffering to the patient, such as a bone marrow test on a 88 year old man with prostate cancer. There is no need for a test like this, the patient has just a short time to live, but hey, the hospital needs to make more money. Same goes for the older patients and physical therapy. People simply get old, and there are things they can no longer do, no matter how much physical therapy they have. Bottom line, physical therapy is a big money maker! years, ago, no one had physical therapy, now, everyone is getting it, even when it makes them feel worse, they still are getting treatment...follow the money!

      I think people at the end of life should be left alone to die in peace. A patient needs to be kept clean and comfortable, they need proper pain management, they need PEACE, and believe me with all the excessive medical care, peace can be a rare commodity indeed.

      Everything is not what it seems.

      We need to stop believeing everything the hospitals and doctors tell us and begin to question them. They are NOT God, they make more mistakes than you want to know about, and yes, they are there in the medical industry, and thats what it is, an industry to MAKE MONEY.

      The oath they take starts out..."First do no harm"...tell that to the poor 88 year old, dying of prostate cancer who has even more pain from an unneeded bone marrow test!

      Its a JOKE!

    • Cari Jean profile imageAUTHOR

      Cari Jean 

      8 years ago from Bismarck, ND

      George J Hardy - Very interesting comment, I really appreciate you leaving it. There does need to be behavioral change in order to end living in a culture of death. It is sad that it is more and more common for societies to embrace death rather than life.

    • Cari Jean profile imageAUTHOR

      Cari Jean 

      8 years ago from Bismarck, ND

      Tupper Lake - yes, I still worry about abortion as it is one of the most violent acts done to the most innocent of lives. I don't think I am insulting the victims of WW II at all. I'm sorry to hear you despise those who try their utmost to respect life.

    • George J Hardy profile image

      George J Hardy 

      8 years ago from Southern New Jersey

      You make a very cogent point of the issue. The culture of death has many facets but its causation's are within the mentality of the individuals who are influenced by their surroundings. We humans have a nasty habit of following others, perhaps out of ignorance or loyalty, to were our cultural behavior becomes persuaded easily. There are many who study this " phenomena" and practice its use on an unsuspecting people.

      In all the arguments that are made regarding the culture of death and even the "culture of life" remarks, I have yet to see religious figures forcibly preaching against it and demanding behavioral change. The pervasiveness of death and societies embrace of it espouse an acceptance of the philosophy behind it. Somebody is not doing their job, but others are !

    • profile image

      Tupper Lake 

      8 years ago

      Oh Bollocks to you. We had thermonuclear missiles and bombs trained at dozens of cities to snuff out tens of millions if not all life on earth yet you worry about abortion? Random violence has always been part of life, even more today with our sensationalized media. But in fact the murder rate has dropped dramatically, over 50% in the last 20 odd years.

      Spare me your Hitler comparisons, that is an insult to the real victims of WW ll, you are why I despise the mongoloid fools who call themselves pro-life.

    • James A Watkins profile image

      James A Watkins 

      8 years ago from Chicago

      I've been steamed but I'm not sure about esteemed! :-)

    • Cari Jean profile imageAUTHOR

      Cari Jean 

      8 years ago from Bismarck, ND

      Thank you so much. That means a lot to me coming from such an esteemed thinker and writer.

    • James A Watkins profile image

      James A Watkins 

      8 years ago from Chicago

      We do live in a culture of death and you are right: it stems from abortion. Thank you for a well written article that I hope hits home with some folks. I enjoyed reading your words tonight. You are right on.

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