DEAR LIBERTY: The neighbor who owns the condo next door often listens to some crazy music. He said his favorite group is called Crazy Mime Mob or something like that. He used to play it so loudly that I could hear it through the walls, and was rather shocked at its violent and profane lyrics; after I complained, he promised to keep it down, but I can still sometimes hear it when we both have our windows open or when I pass him in the hallway while he's wearing headphones. Despite the crudity of the music, he seems like a rather nice young man, but I'm afraid that his sadistic choice in music might evidence a more violent personality underneath the surface. What should I do? - Bothered in Baltimore
DEAR BOTHERED: Leave him alone. It sounds like he is making a good-faith effort to no longer bother you with his music, so it should be trivial to just ignore it. You may be puzzled how he could enjoy such profane music, but understand that the vast majority of adults can tell the difference between media and reality, so the odds that he will try to act out the anti-social behavior espoused in his music is quite negligible. There is no accounting for taste, but don't we all have certain pleasures that our neighbors would not find agreeable? (I know I sure do.)
DEAR LIBERTY: Two women share a house across the street from me. They've been quite friendly ever since I moved in to this subdivision, and I had assumed they were mere roommates - until one day I came home to find they had left an invitation for their wedding in my mailbox! I haven't responded yet, but as a born-again Christian woman, I am incredibly disturbed that these women whom I had mistaken for decent people were in fact brazen homosexuals this whole time! Should I confront them and try to turn them away from their sinful ways? - Born Again in Albuquerque
DEAR BORN: Leave them alone. Please pull out your Bible and re-read the opening section of Chapter 8. Jesus asked those without sin to cast the first stone at the adulterer, but none were able to do that. Not only that, if Jesus could not condemn the sinful woman he had met, who are you to condemn the sinful ones you have met? Besides, once you leave the judging of moral character up to God, it no longer becomes your burden - what a relief! If you don't want to attend the wedding, don't go; if the couple asks you why, politely and calmly tell the truth. If they wish to know more about your faith, they will come to you. Until then, pray for them, but otherwise, let them be.
DEAR LIBERTY: I usually take my children to the park to play at the playground on Saturday afternoons. In recent weeks, there has been a man with a violin who sits near the picnic tables and plays music. He leaves his violin case open in front of him for donations, and my children often ask me for change to throw in his case. I'm pretty sure he's harmless, but I'm a bit concerned that he may be violating the rules against public performances in the park, and I'm willing to bet he's not paying taxes for the "donations" he's receiving in his case. Should I alert the police? - Serenaded in Saratoga
DEAR SERENADED: Leave him alone. Why are you and your children permitted to enjoy yourselves in the public park in your own ways, but he's not allowed to enjoy himself in his way? Besides, unless his music is advocating violent revolution or anything like that, neither the state nor the "public interest" has anything to fear from this man and his violin. As for the tax question, is playing violin in the park and receiving pocket change for it truly an interaction in which the government needs to be involved? I suggest you just enjoy the music.
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