Hunting, preaching, crack whores, hypocrites, and God’s new and improved menu choices, all in one friendly article. I do understand his point; it challenges those who criticize the actions of the ‘other’ to self-examine their behavior before hurling absolute condemnation. I also get the feeling that the author thinks the world is made up of those who hunt on one side and hypocrites on the other. I'm not convinced, but, if he truly believes that there is a third group made up of the people who pass his “test” then he is right; many people certainly do pass the test. Pointing out biblical inconsistencies makes for good reading, but is not going to favor one view over another. And implying that his actions might be justifiable simply because he accepts them in earnest, (and is therefore not a hypocrite) is disconcerting.
I think the simple truth is that not one of us lives a life free of all elements of (moral) contradiction. So, if that's a failing, we're all "guilty" in that respect, though perhaps not equally so (there are blatant and subtle contradictions).
I think that’s right, and not a failing on our part. It might be an impossibility to live a morally sound life in every respect. I think if we engage each other in open and honest discourse, examine our actions, are courteous to those with different views, regardless of the issues, we will be fine.
The demand for purity as a condition of the right to criticize is no more than a clever deflection, an argumentum ad hominem tu quoque. If there are good reasons to think hunting is morally problematic, they are undiminished by the fact that those voicing them are themselves guilty of analogous moral failings.All a critic needs for legitimacy is a good-faith effort to articulate and act out of moral imagination envisioning a better, healthier way of being in the world. The good faith comes from the ongoing process of seeking to make the vision more coherent, and actively seeking to bridge from the status quo to living better.
Right. Of course, as your first paragraph suggests, the legitimacy (but perhaps not the politics) of critique is entirely independent of the good-faith efforts you describe in paragraph 2.