No. 334

One of my favorite events not to attend is the Annual Rattlesnake Roundup that is held in Sweetwater, Texas. I am sure there are many fine people in this West Texas community, but it’s their neighbors that slither across the surrounding hillsides that I don’t have any hankering for. If you happen to like rattlesnakes, don’t take what I am saying too personal, but I just have a strong feeling that you can’t be friends with a rattlesnake. During hunting season in the fall of the year, I am extremely careful in the woods to watch where I step because I would literally jump out of my skin if I stepped on or even near a rattlesnake. The bite of these venomous reptiles can be deadly or at best make you very, very sick. The best course of action when it comes to a rattlesnake is to “steer clear” and I have always tried to do that.
It’s here that I would like to draw a parallel between a rattlesnake and some people because they can also do you in if you are not extremely careful to steer clear of them. You may have heard someone say about another person, “He is as dangerous as a rattlesnake” and this is what I am talking about. While rattlesnakes are endowed by nature with a poisonous venom to render their victims helpless, some people, on the other hand, are just plain evil. At this point, I want to make sure we are on the same page. Do you believe there are evil people in the world? If so, what constitutes an evil person and how did he or she become evil? As you think about your response, please allow me to share my own perspective. I certainly believe there are evil people in the world. They have been around since the beginning of time and they are with us today.
The people who plotted and carried out the terrorist attack on our nation back on September 11, 2001 are or were evil. The same is true for Adolf Hitler, Charles Manson, Ted Bundy, Jeffrey Dohmer and thousands, perhaps millions of other people. Personally, I believe the truly evil people in the world are tools of Satan. If you know people or have heard about people who hold Satanic rituals, then you know what I mean. Satan worship is alive and well right here in our country. The trees, the mountains, the rivers and all the rest of God’s creation are not evil. No, Satan uses people to do his work.
Some time back a friend said to me, “Your column is really a contrast between good and evil.” He was right and I make no apologies for that. If you read my column on a regular basis you know that I always encourage my readers to do what is right, to treat other people with dignity and respect, to be honest and forthright in all their dealings with others, to be a good citizen, and to have a servant’s heart in taking care of the needy and less fortunate in our society.
To be sure, a person who has these qualities is not evil. He or she, whether professed or not, is a Godly, righteous person and they have a real purpose for living. Now, to the last part of my earlier question, how does a person become evil? A person is not born evil, but rather becomes evil when the input into his subconscious mind is so negative, so violent, so perverted they lose touch with reality. This individual then becomes a prime candidate to harbor resentment, bitterness and a feeling of real or perceived injustice that leads to a deep seated hatred of other human beings.
This person then becomes a tool of Satan and they can influence others to walk the same path. While not my favorite subject, in these times I just felt that it was important to share this with you. We always need to help others when we can, but just remember; you can’t be friends with a rattlesnake!! (Jim Davidson is a motivational speaker and syndicated columnist. You may contact him at 2 Bentley Drive, Conway, AR 72034.)