“Mark my word, if and when these preachers get control of the [Republican] party, and they’re sure trying to do so, it’s going to be a terrible damn problem. Frankly, these people frighten me. Politics and governing demand compromise. But these Christians believe they are acting in the name of God, so they can’t and won’t compromise. I know, I’ve tried to deal with them…
There is no position on which people are so immovable as their religious beliefs. There is no more powerful ally one can claim in a debate than Jesus Christ, or God, or Allah, or whatever one calls this supreme being. But like any powerful weapon, the use of God’s name on one’s behalf should be used sparingly. The religious factions that are growing throughout our land are not using their religious clout with wisdom. They are trying to force government leaders into following their position 100 percent. If you disagree with these religious groups on a particular moral issue, they complain, they threaten you with a loss of money or votes or both. I’m frankly sick and tired of the political preachers across this country telling me as a citizen that if I want to be a moral person, I must believe in ‘A,’ ‘B,’ ‘C,’ and ‘D.’ Just who do they think they are? And from where do they presume to claim the right to dictate their moral beliefs to me? And I am even more angry as a legislator who must endure the threats of every religious group who thinks it has some God-granted right to control my vote on every roll call in the Senate. I am warning them today: I will fight them every step of the way if they try to dictate their moral convictions to all Americans in the name of ‘conservatism.'” – Barry Goldwater
How’s that for prophetic? (hat tip to sullivan)
I used to listen to Glenn Beck in the morning on my way to work. I don’t always agree with what he says, but he’s funny and real and he’s not partisan. 1510 here in Nashville decided to pre-empt him recently in favor of Steve Gill “The Talk of Tennessee”.
Besides the fact that he makes derogatory comments about illegal aliens and he espouses his belief in capitalism, yet is a protectionist at heart, he’s just not a good talk show host. And he’s deceitful.
This morning he has been talking about how he is going to talk about a Lipscomb Prof who says that we should deny the Lordship of Christ in order to make peace with Muslims. I knew immediately that this professor was probably Lee Camp and that he probably didn’t say what Steve Gill said he did. I was right.
Steve, I doubt you’ll read this, but if you do, maybe you should learn a little more about what it means to be a Christian. Its not about blowing up terrorists, getting rid of brown people that are here, or making sure that Walmart and Target say Merry Christmas instead of Happy Holidays. Its about loving your enemies in radical ways. Its not about making sure they recognize that your god is better than theirs, its about making sure they see Jesus in your every step.
Update: Lee Camp’s response today in the Tennessean
Something to add to the previous posts list… well something I’m not thankful for, is my harddrive dying. I just got a new (used) comp today, so I’m back in business.
Debbie Moltz, mother of my friends Mitchell and Alex, passed away this week. It was really sad for everyone. She was only 55. But, now she’s cancer free.
I went shopping on black friday, but didn’t want anything badly enough to stand in line.
I think the internet may destroy western society. Hopefully it will hold up until I’m dead or Jesus comes back (whichever is first). Check out this new bastion of ridiculousness.
That’s all for now. I’m sure I’ll post soon.
I don’t know if these things are really ranked; I’m thankful for all of them pretty much equally.
- No more squirrel living in the wall of my apartment. The rodent that was plauging me nightly by gnawing on what is most likely important infrastructure in my apartment has now been evicted, so to speak, through the magic of expanding foam insulation. Chew through that stuff sucker!
- A job that I enjoy in great conditions. Encore has treated me well thus far. My boss Regina does a great job and I’m excited about the direction the company is taking. Plus, the interpersonal relationships there are great.
- My housing situation. I love not having roomates (and no, Carrie will not be considered a roomate. Roomates, by definition, are not married.) and I love my apartment, despite its lack of efficient heating and cooling, its dilapadated infrastructure, the bathroom that is barely big enough for one person…. I love it. Its perfect.
- My family. I got off the phone with my Dad yesterday on my way back to Memphis and I couldn’t help thinking how lucky I am. I have two parents who love me unconditionally and who want the best for me and will give great advice, but allow me to make my own mistakes and have my own opinions. I have brothers who are goofy and help keep my ego in check. And now, my soon to be newest family member will be my next section.
- Carrie Melton. Wow, I can’t be thankful enough for Carrie. She is funny and smart, and she loves me even though I can be an ass sometimes. She keeps me on the straight path, and she can make me smile, even when I’m having a terrible day. Oh yeah, and she’s a hottie. 😉
- Finally, I’m thankful for Christ. I’m thankful that he has grace for folks like me who are realizing now that we barely have anything figured out and have had it wrong for a long time. I’m thankful that he offered us a third way, a way of non violence, a way of peace, a way of love. The Way of God.
I mean, we didn’t raise the minimum wage or anything? How could wages be rising?
A quote pertinent to our dicussion of late. May MF rest in peace.
“Alcohol and tobacco cause many more deaths in users than do drugs.
Decriminalization would not prevent us from treating drugs as we now
treat alcohol and tobacco: prohibiting sales of drugs to minors,
outlawing the advertising of drugs and similar measures. Such measures
could be enforced, while outright prohibition cannot be. Moreover, if
even a small fraction of the money we now spend on trying to enforce
drug prohibition were devoted to treatment and rehabilitation, in an
atmosphere of compassion not punishment, the reduction in drug usage
and in the harm done to the users could be dramatic.
This plea comes from the bottom of my heart. Every friend of freedom,
and I know you are one, must be as revolted as I am by the prospect of
turning the United States into an armed camp, by the vision of jails
filled with casual drug users and of an army of enforcers empowered to
invade the liberty of citizens on slight evidence,” – Milton Friedman,
in a 1990 open letter to Bill Bennett, big government conservative.
Do you ever sit down and just think, “Do I really have it right?”
Occasionally, that thought will enter my mind as I contemplate the complexities of humanity and reality. When I start to apply a strictly rational thought process to my faith, I wonder, is this really true? Did Jesus really come back to life? Is there really an all powerful being out there that created us and everything around us? Sometimes its just difficult to wrap your mind around. I’m sure I’m not the only person who thinks about this sometimes. Surely I’m not the only one who struggles with doubting.
I just read this post from a featured blog on wordpress. It says the the hubble telescope has disproved God. I thought the title was interesting so I hopped over there. I had never thought about it before, but because stars are so far away, when we see their light, we are actually looking back in time. We’re seeing light that happened years and years ago. Or really, billions of years ago. It simultaneously causes doubt and belief. Its weird to believe that the universe has been around so long, yet humans have been around for a brief period of time in comparison. Why did God take so long to do that if we were the purpose of his creation? But also, when I see things like this article, I think, “there is no way that this happened on accident.”
I don’t know, I struggle. Belief is a hard enough thing. Faith that moves you to act is even harder. I pray that I have more faith. I pray that for everyone that reads this.