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Grassroots Commentary

Keep Your Nose Out!

Rona Swanson · Apr. 14, 2014

British novelist C. S. Lewis (1898-1963): “Of all tyrannies, a tyranny exercised for the good of its victims may be the most oppressive. It may be better to live under robber barons than under omnipotent moral busybodies. The robber baron’s cruelty may sometimes sleep, his cupidity may at some point be satiated; but those who torment us for our own good will torment us without end for they do so with the approval of their own conscience.”

Curiosity may have killed the cat, but it gets our puppy Joey in a lot of trouble too!

He cannot stand to have something going on that he cannot observe and be a part of.

The other morning, I was seated in a chair, trying to apply nail polish before I left for work. He was trying to scrabble up and see what I was doing. He is always thinking that there may be food involved and that he might be missing out! I told him to get down and I thought that he was complying docilely. I inserted the brush into the polish and just as I lifted it to apply to my nail, he timed a leap and got his nose on the brush. There was a great deal of spluttering and nose rubbing. I could not even see a little drop on him, but apparently the strong odor of nail polish was aggressively flying up his baby nostrils and he did not like it one bit!

He will listen better next time when I tell him to keep his distance.

He reminds me of people that I know. They are always sticking their noses in where they do not belong. Is it the internet and reality TV that has made us so determined to know everybody else’s business? I don’t know. But we have become a nation of nosey neighbors.

It is reflected even in our government and the nanny-state policies that turn us all into “our brother’s keeper”, whether they want it or not.

Yes, we should care about one another.

Yes, we should hold out a hand to help.

The only way that kind of assistance is ever really effective and life-altering is when it is done on an individual basis, one on one. The mindless, faceless distribution of wealth solves nothing.

In the meantime, perhaps it would be good advice to back our noses out of what should clearly be the responsibility and turf of the individual we are shadowing. It would serve us right if we get a rude awakening just like Joey did.

My Grandma used to tell us to stick to our own knitting……and I think that advice is good today.

1 Timothy 5:13 New International Version (NIV): "Besides, they get into the habit of being idle and going about from house to house. And not only do they become idlers, but also busybodies who talk nonsense, saying things they ought not to.“

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