Friday, February 13, 2004
On my way to work there are a couple of those "independent" evangelical churches. And like most of them, they have a sign outside up which they post various saying that always emphasize the works and love of God over those of Man. Which isn't necessarily a bad thing. But the whole ridiculous tizzy over Janet Jackson's breast apparently gave someone a massive stroke at one of these churches and cut off the oxygen to their brain. This is the sign currently outside the building:
POLLUTED SCREENS ARE A BIGGER CONCERN THAN POLLUTED STREAMS
Yow. This is disturbing for two reasons. First, this person is more concerned over something that they have direct control over than something they have no control over. All they have to do is change the channel on the TV, or turn it off, and they never have to risk seeing a televised naked breast again. But they have no control over MBTE or mercury runoff entering their drinking water. Plus, they don't have to watch TV. But the last time I checked, you need water to live.
The second reason is even more disturbing. This is a church. God's house. I would assume the pastor believes that God should come first in our lives. Well, the last time I checked, most Christians believe that God created the Earth. Whether we believe he just did it outright or through the big bang and evolution is irrelevant. God created the world for us. And this pastor is telling us that the ruination of God's gift to us is SECONDARY to a television show! Are you kidding? Do you really believe that a man-made TV show takes precedence over God?
This is the problem in religion today. Political beliefs (anti-gay, conservative TV policy) has become part of the message being preached to people. The result is that the works of God are taking a backseat to the works of Man within the church itself. And that is not a good thing.
Thursday, February 12, 2004
Just a quick post today. The gay marriage debate continues in Boston. Some people want everyone to have the right to marry the person they love. Others want to codify bigotry and create a level of second-class citizenship. The shocking part of this has been the black ministers opposed to this, claiming the Bible preaches against it. These "men of God" would do well to remember that the Bible was used to support slavery in the 19th century. For these people to turn around and use the Bible to hold down another minority...it's sad. Almost as sad as the 10 year-old girl who said a gay man "would burn in Hell" in front of the State House yesterday. No child should be saying anything like that.
And remember, God says NOTHING about homosexuality. The only negative reference to it is in letters written by Paul. A man who was trying to spread Christianity across Central Europe and the Middle East. A man with an agenda. What he says must be taken in that historical context. And it must also be remembered that he was NOT the voice of God. In fact, central to any Protestant faith (and most Christian blacks are Protestant) is that no one person speaks for God, the way Catholics believe the Pope does. So when these people use Paul as a cornerstone for their bigotry, they are saying he speaks for God, which he does not. Only one person in the New Testament truly spoke for God, and that was Jesus. And he says NOT ONE WORD about gay marriage.
When these opponents speak of gay marriage violating God's law, what they are truly speaking to is fear in their heart. The concept of gay marriage either scares or offends them personally on such a level that they can't allow it in society at all. What they would do well to remember is that in the United States, you can be personally offended. But that doesn't allow you to force others to act in accordance to your whims. It's called freedom, people.
Wednesday, February 11, 2004
Like a meteor in the night sky, the Presidential candidacy of General Wes Clark has shone brightly and then flamed out. After getting smoked last night in the latest primaries, Clark bowed out, claiming he will continue to work for the Democratic Party. Clark, with his sterling resume, should have been a front-runner. But he never quite clicked. There were two reasons:
- He's not really a Democrat. At least, not the kind of Democrat he campaigned like. Clark is a fiscally conservative, socially moderate man. But he talked like a far-left radical. I don't know if he did this because he felt he had to establish his party bona-fides, but it came off badly. You could tell he was trying too hard. This leads directly to the second reason...
- Chris Lehane. By now, any future Democratic candidate should know to avoid this guy like the plague. He tanked Gephardt's '88 campaign. He helped Gore throw away what should have been an easy victory in 2000 (How do you lose your HOME STATE? Not even Mondale did that.) And now he submarined the candidacy of a man who should have been a front-runner. A four-star general with a degree in economics who can appeal to the swing votes in the middle? That's a slam-dunk! Instead, he wraps him up in vintage 1976 leftist jargon and sends him to slaughter. A blind puffin could have run that campaign better. Makes you wonder if the GOP pays him off...
And so the Kerry Express continues unabated. But what happens when his warts begin to show? Bush's biggest issue, the "AWOL" flap, has been released so early that by November any effect it has electorally will have already been felt. Comparatively, many Kerry supporters still don't know that he threw someone else's medals over the gate during his oh-so famous protest. What happens when the eletorate at large gets that piece of news in, oh, July?
Tuesday, February 10, 2004
Millions of dieting Americans choked on their blocks of cheese today as it was revealed that Dr. Robert Atkins, founder of his namesake high-protein diet, died a bloated mess. Weighing in at a hefty 258 pounds, Dr. Atkins had a history of hypertension and suffered a heart attack and congestive heart failure. His wife claims all this came about not due to his diet, but rather a "viral infection." I didn't realize that we were referring to steak and heavy cream as a "viral infection" these days.
I'll be the first one to admit that, as a short-term fix, the Atkins diet works. I lost 20 pounds in little over a month and a half. Of course, during that time I would have killed someone for a glass of orange juice. Long-term, that just isn't a healthy way to live. The only sure way to lose weight and keep it off: sensible eating and exercise. The problem is that it requires discipline and self-control, two things lacking in modern society. So we get these extreme diets, some of them direct opposites, and a deluge of pills that do absolutely nothing but get you hopped up on caffeine. Which is why we are far and away the "fattest" nation on Earth.
Monday, February 09, 2004
He is unable to get over losing the 2000 election (all he had to do was win Tennessee, folks). His brief run as kingmaker of the Democrats is over as Dean fades into irrelevancy. What’s left? Well, for Al Gore it’s attacking Bush over Iraq, saying he took America on an “ill-conceived foreign adventure” in Iraq. What’s worse, the war was planned prior to 9-11.
Well, gosh, that’s horrible! You mean they devised a plan for invading a nation that we had already been to war with? A nation that had used chemical weapons in the past? A nation that had twice been thwarted in their nuclear ambitions only by the Israelis in the early 80s and the First Gulf War? The nation that Clinton and Gore bombed on multiple occasions between 1992-2000? Wow, how odd, having a contingency plan for a rogue nation like that. You can be sure that Al Gore would have had no plan whatsoever had he been President! I can’t believe he didn’t win.
As for “ill-conceived,” that is a matter of opinion. But read this article about a letter found in an Iraqi insurgency safe-house. It begs al-Qaeda for help, essentially saying that they are receiving minimal support, if any, from the vast majority of the population.. So contrary to the perception that we aren’t making ground, we are making valid gains. And if the result is a non-hostile Iraq that isn’t constantly meddling in Palestine and other hot spots, then the war was valid, WMDs or not.