This is Ellen here. I tried to post this twice last week. Once the font came out all wrong (read HUGE) & I didn’t have time to fix it. The second time it went out into hyperspace somewhere & it’s apparently still there. Maybe this time….?
April 26, 2016
Okay, I know what hyperbole is… purposeful, strategic and obvious exaggeration. Sadly, it’s sometimes used in an offensive, insensitive and obnoxious way. “An example,” you ask? How about 3. One of my pet peeves is when National Football League players reference “going to war” before a “game.” Get it? “War” on one hand and “game” on the other. WAR IS NOT A GAME!! Any idea who was the last player to die in an NFL game? Well thanks to Google… “Charles Frederick ‘Chuck’ Hughes (March 2, 1943 – October 24, 1971) was an American football player, a wide receiver in the National Football League from 1967 to 1971. He is, to date, the only NFL player to die on the field during a game.” Notice the word “ONLY.” The NFL really doesn’t sound much like a war to me. Sounds more like a football game. And I think the reference to “war” by “players” (not soldiers) disrespects those who died in REAL war. Get over yourselves NFL players.
Or what about politicians when they use the phrase, “the American people want…” What I want is to scream! What American people are you talking about? Because I know for a fact that you are not talking about ALL American people! And I suspect on too many occasions you are not even talking about “most” American people. You might be talking about your constituents… maybe. Stop using hyperbole when it is intended to confuse instead of instruct.
What about this example… and actually this is the inspiration behind this rumination. Maybe you know and maybe you don’t know about the “tragedy” surrounding the Live with Kelly and Michael show which airs on morning television Monday-Friday. If you don’t know you ARE NOT going to believe this. Seriously! The network decided to transfer Michael to another show full time beginning in September and they didn’t tell Kelly about it until shortly before it was announced. That is so devastating that I fail for words. But thankfully Kelly found the words for me. Her comment after everyone kissed and made up was, “Our long national nightmare is over.” The “long nightmare” being referred to was 3 days when she refused to show up for work because she was in a snit. Honestly I know little of this lady but “long national nightmare?!?!” Was this hyperbole? Sadly I suspect not. And even if it was… it was poorly conceived. “Long national nightmare,” my foot.
Racism in our country… that’s a national nightmare. Financial disparity in our country… that’s a national nightmare. People wasting their lives and having their dignity stolen by government assistance (of course there are people who need it… don’t go there with me.)… that’s a national nightmare. Several totally inept people running for president… that’s a national nightmare. Hatred between those on the “left” and those on the “right”… that’s a national nightmare. Mass shootings every week… that’s a national nightmare. Lack of adequate jobs… that’s a national nightmare. Healthcare… no matter where you fall on this issue… that’s a national nightmare. The demise of the Church in our country… that’s a national nightmare. The lack of education of our youth… that’s a national nightmare. What to do with illegal aliens… that’s a national nightmare. Gender confusion… that is becoming a national nightmare. College students who know nothing of sacrifice and all they want is what THEY want… that’s a national nightmare. The demise of traditional families… that’s a national nightmare. 60 million babies aborted… that’s a national nightmare. Every time you turn the news on there IS a national nightmare. Need I go on?
Kelly, I don’t know you. I’m sure you were upset. But I do know that every morning on your way to work you pass hundreds of homeless people on the streets of New York City… that is a national nightmare! Your snit over a television show and the influence you bring to bear is simply immature and self-centered. I hope you come to that realization and apologize for your hyperbole… if in fact it was one.
By the way… in case you were wondering… hyperbole is used in scripture on numerous occasions.
John 4:39 39 Many of the Samaritans from that town believed in him because of the woman’s testimony, “He told me everything I ever did.” Seriously no one really thinks Jesus stood there and gave an accounting of every moment of her life do they? I suspect she meant he “knew the pertinent details of her life and maybe things he seemingly could not have known.”
Or what about Mark 1? 5 The whole Judean countryside and all the people of Jerusalem went out to him. Is there anyone who thinks the entire city of Jerusalem was emptied so that they could “all” go see John? Don’t you think it really is intended to mean “many, many people of Jerusalem?”
Maybe one more John the Baptist reference: John 3:26 They came to John and said to him, “Rabbi, that man who was with you on the other side of the Jordan—the one you testified about—look, he is baptizing, and everyone is going to him.” Once again… “everyone???” I seriously doubt it. Does this mean that the Bible isn’t accurate? Of course not. Bible writers used literary devices just like we do. But it’s essential that we recognize them!
Hyperbole in and of itself is not bad or evil… but it can be when used irresponsibly.
Honestly… I hate when people do that… I think I might want to kill them.
You get it right?