Alert! Musing content trending toward serious. In the miniseries, “Lonesome Dove”, the two main characters of Gus and Call were former Texas Rangers as was a third friend, Jake. Of the three, Call was the most rigid when it came to questions of good and bad, Gus was more philosophical and Jake tended to get into more trouble than the others. At one point in the series, Jake strikes out on his own, but it is dangerous territory and he winds up with two men who are in fact not averse to theft and murder. This was not Jake’s intent of course and as the tragedy unfolds, Gus and Call are forced to acknowledge that Jake is involved. During the intensifying situation, Jake protests his innocence about “having crossed the line”, with the exclamation of, “I didn’t see no line. I was just trying to get through the territory.” (Or words to that effect)
That is an incredibly accurate description for so many of us about many things. Seeing the line between right and wrong is often difficult and like in a rapid sport, it can be easy to step across the line before you realize it. In the realm of “right and wrong” though there is the complication of lines being blurred when you ask yourself honestly where a particular line is. Does the line exist because you believe it to, or because you have generally accepted it as a line? Does a line now exist where it did not before or vice-versa? What we once believed to be harmless fun, we might now come to see is hurtful. Or perhaps something that we once thought was inappropriate, we now put into perspective as no big deal. Yet in the desire to be “non-judgmental” do we run the risk of losing all standards? And where does “sticking to your principles” become an unwillingness to honestly examine a position to see if perhaps you should change? No easy answers here, are there?