Over at his blog Preludium, Mark Harris has a very thougthful post, The Global Warming of Fear and Hate: Anti-Semitism, Homophobia and Xenophobia.
A central point of that post is that in difficult times folks often look for someone to blame and, in the history of the West, the someone is quite often the Jews. I find Mark's post echoing some thoughts that I have had the past few days about the economic mess in this country. From some quarters we are hearing warnings about "class warfare," as if anyone commenting about the widening income gap in the USA was inciting a riot. From others we hear strong words of condemnation for Wall Street villains, as if the rest of us had no responsibility for the maintaining of our over-consuming culture.
Criticism, including self-criticism, is called for, but not condemnation, including self-condemnation. One of the joys of living in grace is that we are free to look honestly at our own sins and the sins of others. We have been - are being - forgiven and transformed, and do not stand condemned.