The local church is perhaps the best venue to address the evolution of social dialogue that has become wrought with grievous insensitivities. Fraumann is a fictional name. The quotes are real. “Can’t you be happy with what you’ve got?” Fraumann said this to a “oldest and dearest friend” of over 50 years, whose sole source of income has been Social Security disability benefits for over a decade. “I make an obscene amount of money.” With retirement income of $54,000 per year plus full Social Security benefits. Insensitive, indeed. “Oh, that still bothers you?” Fraumann’s ‘friend’ had lost a mother one year prior. Fraumann had known the deceased from childhood, and a frequent dinner guest. “Your dad’s been gone two Christmases.” The father had actually passed a mere 8 months! “He seems fine to me!” Attempting to relate the effects of his “dearest and oldest friend” being bipolar, Fraumann would have nothing of it! Fraumann shot up and left the room. Fraumann was aware that the “friend” had attempted suicide. Even now, Fraumann solicits sympathy for the slightest of ailments. A bout of flu is fraught with a proclamation, “I wouldn’t wish this on anybody!” Fraumann disregards the seriousness of mental illness by repeatedly articulating the belief that ending one’s own life is “…taking the easy way out”, a personal choice and not an illness. “You get back what you give.” Fraumann’s belief cries for being rewarded for any real, or even perceived, act of kindness, understanding or contribution. Thus, to Fraumann, charity demands a reward of some value. “As I have seen, those who plow iniquity and sow trouble reap the same.” Job 4:8“The charity that hastens to proclaim its good deeds, ceases to be charity, and is only pride and ostentation.” Historian William Hutton. “It is a capital blunder, as you discover, when another man recites his charities.” Ralph Waldo Emerson.One person’s observation characterized Fraumann as being “self-absorbed”.
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