Two Rights Can’t Make a Wrong

Sr. Wantabee dragged herself through the rain and 45 degree weather to swim this morning. She chatted with the lady a couple lockers down — about the weather, of course, in MN! The other lady parked her shoes, reached for her locker and commented. “We do need rain!” That always seems like such a funny statement to Sr. Wantabee who spent years on the desertifying edges of N. Kenya, that DO need rain, whereas the green grass and lush trees here in Minnesota are not such worthy recipients to her untrained eyes. Sr. Wantabee countered, “And I do need exercise!” She thought and quipped, “Two rights can’t make a wrong,” modifying the old adage, two wrongs don’t make a right. The earth needs water and she needs exercise so all is ok in the universe as she started to do her laps.

Two positives make a positive in math, thought she. But do two positives necessitate a positive in social life. Her mind wandered through her years. As a 3rd grader living in Iowa, the rains had brought flooding and the neighbor who lived behind her had a flooded basement and they were rescuing their goods and taking them upstairs. Sr. Wantabee parked her first grade sister on the steps and told her not to move. She was too young and too short. Right. Sr. Wantabee herself spent the morning helping the neighbors rescue their goods in what seemed like a nice swimming pool. A good deed. Right? She arrived home with her sister in tow and discovered to her dismay that it was 2 pm and she had missed lunch, terribly upsetting her mother. “Wait until your father gets home!” Two rights produced a wrong.

She thought of her missionary dating in her early 20s. Certainly the wonderfulness of herself would result in a fun date and a person influenced for Christ. Two rights. Wrong. The dates were ackward and no lasting friendships developed.

People should be free to pick their government. That’s democracy. Right? Fair elections. Right. The corrupt politician with more money wins and people are killed as in the elections in Kenya. Two rights produced a wrong – bloodshed.

Perhaps two positives make a positive in math but in life, it is much trickier and much less predictable. Perhaps in the greater scheme of things it will work out but Sr. Wantabee was not so sure. She continued swimming, humbled.

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