Church Bells and a New Year's Wish

Background info:  The neighbors on both sides of my house are staunch Obama supporters. On one side is a family with energetic, semi-disciplined children and an energetic dog. "Energetic" is polite for LOUD! I love kids and I love animals, but it can get trying when the noise from my neighbors house booms into my home even with all my doors and windows closed.

Mental health info:  Call me crazy, but I engage the parents from time to time in political discourse.

Recent experience:  A conversation developed with the Dad that provided me with an opportunity to address some of my concerns about Islam, terrorism, and national security. He countered my comments by referencing Bible passages (of note, he is a former Christian turned atheist) to suggest that Christians are just as dangerous and Muslims. I commented on the absurdity of his reference and asked if he could give me any modern day examples of the behaviors he cited. He then painted with a very broad brush and said Christians are "overrunning the country" and "trying to take control of everything." I asked, "How so?" He said, "The church bells disrupt the silence."

I have heard this before, so I was only semi-stunned, and prepared:  "Do you mean the ‘silence' of suburbia with a din of constant ambient noise including cars, train whistles, sirens, oh and yes, screaming children and barking dogs?" And with that, our conversation came to a halt.

Interpretation:  It would seem that the daily noise emanating from my neighbor's property is secular and therefore exempt from being a disturbance to anyone.

A New Year's Wish:  I hope I always live in a place where I can hear the sound of church bells. They are beautiful and remind me of a spiritual life beyond the concrete world - the world of screaming kids and barking dogs and clueless neighbors who refuse to see the danger in our midst. Thanks to AT and AT bloggers for being a refuge amidst the madness, for shaping my world view, and for some occasional great laughs. Wishing everyone a safe and Happy New Year. With Hope and prayers that in 2010 we will take our country back.