Wednesday, June 20, 2018

If everyone cared about Americans who have been hurt by unlawful immigration

How liberals see anything done by non-liberals in America today
As much as we care about the sad spectacle of children being removed from their parents, we probably wouldn't have come to the point where children are being removed from their parents.  The problem would have been fixed long ago.  I thought of that as I was reminded of this old article from January in the National Review.  It's taking a look at the crime stats regarding immigration along the southern border of the US.

Now I'm not going to get into a slug fest over stats.  You know the old saying about statistics and liars.  But the fact is, some Americans died at the hands of immigrants who were here illegally.  That's a fact.  We won't talk about the strain that caring for illegal immigrants put on the monies used for America's least of these, as Democrats said back in the 90s.  Nor will we talk about the bizarre unspoken idea that laws only apply based upon your national origin and skin color.  We won't get into the idea that immigrants might actually take jobs from Americans who are most desperate for the jobs the immigrants have taken, or those DACA recipients who have wowed the critics by living their entire lives outside the law while making it through Ivy League universities and landing corporate level jobs in Silicon Valley, all while home grown Americans can barely digress from a traffic law without having their careers sideswiped.

Nope.  We're just taking Americans killed by immigrants.  And you know what happened when this was brought up over the last decade or so?  Not a damn thing. Sometimes you were mocked or laughed at.  Sometimes a bizarre stat about White Americans killing more people than Muslim Americans would be thrown at you (which is a bit like saying Californians shockingly kill more people than Rhode Islanders).  It was almost always explained away, laughed away, dismissed, mocked or just ignored.  After all, they're only Americans.  Over the last couple decades, they increasingly came last.

Which is one of the greatest evils of our age, this postmodern ethic whereby as long as [other] Americans die, it's the sacrifice I'm willing to make.  Add to that the modern racism, where you can always tell a racist who probably got what's coming to him by the color of his skin (and nationality), and you had a very robust disregard for those who died, perhaps by the hundreds, at the hands of illegal immigrants.

Note that the article is just talking about one part of the crime problem.  I know people will say you'll never stop all illegal immigration, so such tragedies are inevitable.  Just remember that the next time Gun Control activists insist that their solutions should be tried, even if they would do almost nothing, since saving even one life is worth everything.  Same here.  But the fact is that the conversation never even came to that.  You just couldn't get anyone to care.  Those who did care were mostly people along the border, who often were portrayed by the press as bigots and racists by default, if they were covered at all.

Of course now we all care.  Now we're in the throes of the new Holocaust.  Literally.  This is being compared to the Gestapo, to the Nazi SS, to Concentration camps and even to Auschwitz.  Trump is Hitler.  All who defend it are Hitler.  They are all wrong.  The Bible is clearly against it.  It's an affront to God.

And in almost every case, the ones screaming Hitler! the loudest today are the ones who stood aside and let the crickets do the talking when the suffering and even death of innocent Americans and their  children was appealed to for all those years.  Somehow I think the point of the Gospel isn't that people only matter when their suffering helps advance a political agenda.  Somehow I think the point is that people matter, and when they are suffering, we should do something to make sure they are helped without hurting other innocent people.  If we do that, maybe others won't suffer down the road, even if their suffering does make for advantageous political exploitation.

BTW, to understand Trump, one need only think on this issue.  Since the end of the Cold War, the Left was pushing us to a post-nation world; a one world global government.  Everything was going global. If Americans were hurt?  Eh.  If you cared about America (or England, Italy, Poland, or any other nation)? Eh.  Get over it.  Increasingly, anyone came before an American.  A stranger before my cousin, my cousin before my brother, and everyone before [other] Americans.  The press was fine with it, the Democrats thrived on it, popular culture embraced it, and many religious leaders were hip to the groove (after all, Jesus didn't come to establish America).   But Trump has thrown that on its head and said 'Nope, in fact my main concern is Americans.'  Perhaps he does it to a fault.  Maybe he goes overboard.  But he is caring for tens of millions of Americans who, up until 2016, were simply not that big of a deal for a growing number of leaders who used to care, at least when it was convenient.

Tuesday, June 19, 2018

White liberals as a race apart

I'm uncomfortable with the thought of these White Germans
If you think about it, white liberals today talk about Whites in general the same way Whites in general once talked about Blacks, Jews, Middle Easterners, Indians, Native Americans, Polynesians, and a host of dark and brown skinned swarthy types from around the 18th century through the 20th.

Why?  How do white liberals talk about Whites as if, by their very skin color, you can tell they are racist, stupid, bigots, sexists, evil, bad, selfish, xenophobic, and a host of negative qualifiers?  How do they do it and yet you get the impression they never mean themselves?  I don't know.  I know one thing though.  They do it as if to say it's not them they mean when they talk of 'Whites' derogatorily.  Or at least they mean somehow they've been cleansed of the sin of Whiteness that so mercilessly infects all others of the same skin color, whether those whites believe in Jesus or not.  It's as if something other than Just Jesus is needed to cleanse the sin of 'Whiteness.'

In the Catholic world of apologetics, nobody does it better than Mark Shea, who has perfected the use of the term "White" in a way that would make Goebbels green with envy, if only it could be switched back to 'Jew'.
A sampling from the last five days at CAEI.  Note how the description of 'White' isn't really needed (since non-whites also hold some of these views), but is continually added as a negative modifier.  

But in fairness he's hardly alone.  From 1994, when the US Media blamed the Democrat's midterm defeat on the now infamous Angry White Male, we knew we had turned a corner.  With no evidence other than skin color (and gender), the reasons for their voting were declared and guilt was proclaimed.  Since the 1960s, the Democratic Party ditched its anti-Black positions and replaced them with anti-WASP positions.  By the 90s, clearly using 'White' where once Jew or Black would have worked was the new socially acceptable bigotry.

Take this from a year or so ago.   Kipling was more inclusive in his appraisal of the white man's burden.  If you were to scratch out 'White' and replace it with 'Arab' or 'Black', it would be nothing less than what I've read in a thousand pieces from the 19th century Europe or American literature.  On one hand it tries to be understanding, even compassionate.  On the other it's like an article observing a class of backward tribesmen in the Amazon only recently discovered.

Again, what throws everyone off is that this new 'anti-Whiteness' is primarily done by Whites.  White liberals, white leftists and increasingly white post-Conservatives.  When Russel Moore said that Southern Christians were, in many cases, just racists worshiping Jim Crow rather than Jesus, I get the strong impression he meant "Other" Christians.  Not him.  And that's the point with this new racism.  I really believe that for white liberals and the growing number of post-conservative whites, they see 'White' as some other race, a separate demographic.  Sort of a genetic mutation on the bottom end of the ethnic chain, if that.

Perhaps they see it like the characters of Danny DeVito and Arnold Schwarzenegger in the movie Twins.  The liberal white people are Schwarzenegger's character.  They are the ones who embody all that is best in their gene pool.  They are the smart, spiritual, caring, loving, open, tolerant, penitent, and intellectual ones.  But 'Whites', on the other hand, are DeVito - the genetic refuse pile.  They have everything that is bad.  Sure, they're technically the same group, the same ethnicity, the same heritage.  But the liberals are the good ones embodying all that is best in humanity, unlike those 'Whites', by which they really mean 'them over there.'

I could be wrong, but I think I'm onto something.  There's just no way white Americans can speak of Whites in a way that is more reminiscent of Nazis trashing Jews in the 30s and think they mean themselves.  Perhaps they do.  Maybe it's their form of confession.  Maybe it's projecting on everyone else what they, themselves, really are.  But I don't think so.  At best it's some perverse mockery of confession gone horribly wrong.  Sort of cleansing oneself by insisting everyone else in the demographic is more of a sinner than you are.  At worst, it's literally throwing their own demographic under the bus in the hopes that if the barbed wire fences ever go up, they'll have laid a claim on property outside the fences looking in.

Whatever the reason,  I think they have divided their own demographic into two groups, and firmly believe that they are the ones who have stars on their bellies.  It's those other starless ones who are the 'Whites' they are talking about.  And by White, they increasingly mean what was once meant by Black, Jew, Mexican, Arab and so on, but certainly not them.

Same attitude, different demographic

Friday, June 15, 2018

A quick question about CBS and Tesla

Are they married?  Having an affair?  Worship each other as gods? I ask this because, as a general rule, CBS This Morning is the show we watch while getting ready in the morning.  For a couple months now, I don't think we've gone more than a couple days at a time without CBS having something about Tesla or Tesla's CEO Elon Musk.  Not just stories, but full blown specials focused on him and his company.  I mean, even in stories where I didn't think it would go there, they manage to somehow talk about Tesla or Mr. Musk, and almost always in the most positive manner.  Even when the story is negative, like Tesla laying off thousands of workers, they still find ways to praise and adore Tesla and Musk.  Am I missing something?

Thursday, June 14, 2018

My problems with the #MeToo Movement

Acceptable wisdom in the #MeToo Era
So there's been a lot of hoopla about the #MeToo movement, with almost everyone - Christians included - equating it to the birth of the Christian Faith.  There is almost no critiques that I've seen.  I don't know if it's because men are scared, women don't dare disagree because of the wrongs the #MeToo Movement appears to be righting.  I don't know. But here are a few thoughts of mine on the subject, especially in light of my post about Beth Moore.

1. What about women?  It's as if they are immaculately conceived, devoid of sin, and have contributed not an iota to the whole sexed up, exploit, assault and harass culture.  I've actually heard people ask why a woman would ever lie about being sexually mishandled, as if it's abhorrent to think a woman has ever lied.  Let me be honest, I've worked with women who openly talked about men the way men do when they're called sexist and threatening.  I've seen women behave every bit as bad as men regarding men.  I know there are cases where women have used their positions of power to force men into compromises.  Let's not overlook women who blissfully kept tales of assault and rape secret, not because they were cowering in the corner, but because they wanted to keep climbing the ladder of wealth and power without hurting the relationships with others on that same ladder.  And finally, let's not ignore women who have exploited the sex culture in order to flaunt themselves, entice men, and use all the worst of the sex culture for their advantage.  At some point we must address these, or the entire #MeToo becomes a farce, rather than a principled movement.

2. It's not defined.  I understand what rape is.  Sexual assault seems pretty straight forward.  But beyond that, it's everyone for themselves. I've read multiple pieces by women explaining what does and doesn't constitute harassment or vile, misogynistic behavior.  Know what?  They're nowhere close to agreeing.  Before we rush and start declaring men inherently misogynistic and therefore guilty (in the way we've more or less said that you can always tell a guilty racist by the color of his skin), we need some standards.  At least in the past, witch hunters had the decency to define just what constitutes a witch.

3. It accepts, almost with ease, the old feminist notion that all of history was some horrible patriarchal world of chauvinistic male pigs oppressing and terrorizing women.  It assumes that all of how men and women lived and interacted was an artificially imposed nightmare for women created by this broad, male dominated conspiracy.  It suggests that any differences at all between the roles of women and men are anathema, and purely the result of the evils that men do.  Even among women who are ostensibly conservative, traditional and Christian, it suddenly turns out the first 2000 years of the Faith were pretty detestable because of men, Scriptural models included.

That's what feminists have said for decades and, up to within the last year, it was what anyone but radical Leftists and feminists rejected. Why is it now, almost overnight, the only acceptable way to read history?

4.  Inconsistency.  Are women the weaker sex or not?  Are they the fairer sex or not?  Is it safe to say women and men are inherently different, and clearly men are the stronger, more physically capable by nature, or not?  After all, the reason why we focus exclusively on women as victims is predicated on the idea that, when all things are equal, women stand helpless before men. Obviously women are at the disadvantage; obviously it's men who are the only ones to be concerned about since they alone can do harm.  And yet, turn on a dime and say women are the weaker sex, and you'll still be called a sexist.  How dare you generalize about women being weaker than men!  Well, which is it?  Dave Rule #2:  Never trust revolutions that rely on rejecting and accepting the same proposition in the same sentence.

Nope.  I think the whole #MeToo movement is, at its best, righting the horrible wrongs that were done to women in the 90s.  The 90s were a feast or famine time for women.  Women began speaking out against sexual harassment and assault in the 70s and 80s.  During that time, they were able to roll back notions of mercy and forgiveness for men guilty of sexual harassment, even as our society was all about pity and rehab for almost every other crime.  It peaked with the Anita Hill/Clarence Thomas scandal, even though it was impossible for some (including women) to ignore the feeling that the whole thing seemed somewhat political.

Of course once Bill Clinton was elected, all bets were off.  Suddenly we never heard of women being sexually assaulted or raped.  Women who accused Clinton were called liars, whores and trailer park trash.  They were attacked by prominent liberal voices.  They were mocked in popular culture.  Hillary Clinton stood by and watched as, one after another, the women accusing her husband were verbally gang raped.  For years after, the whole 'sexual harassment/assault' went back underground.

You get bonus points if you've noticed that a large number of cases where prominent men have been accused of assault/harassment hail from around the late 90s/early 00s (see the Clinton Years above).  At its best, the #MeToo movement is righting that horribly unjust wrong.  At it's best, it should be a call for massive repentance for all who have taken abusive treatment of women and turned a blind eye, whether for politically expedient reasons or whatever.

Nonetheless, like most things in our technology charged, split second, media saturated era, it has almost immediately poured over into extremism, fanaticism and zealotry.  Men are assumed guilty by accusation.  During the Roy Moore era, we actually had serious discussions in which we were informed that notions of justice, presumption of innocence, due process and even the need for evidence only exist in our courtrooms - for now.  Outside of those rooms, your arse belongs to whichever demographic happens to matter. I literally watched as we were told that it was time to get over this whole 'we need evidence before destroying a person's life' fetish.  Hello, I think we have Salem on the phone.

That is my problem.   In barely a year, traditional, conservative, non-feminist Christians have all but accepted a model of understanding relations between the sexes that, only a year or so ago, they would have dismissed as radical feminism 101.  In addition, we have no ground rules at all.  Beyond rape and assault, there is no clear set of standards as to what does and doesn't constitute sexist or inappropriate behavior, yet we're on a McCarthy-like crusade, with women just wandering around saying 'he did it, He Did It, HE DID IT!', and taken at face value for their efforts.  And to reiterate, I'm seeing absolutely no accountability for women.  It's as if they never existed except to be victims.  It's as if no woman ever did anything wrong, ever exploited the very culture they now condemn, ever lied, or ever played along for their own selfish goals.  It's as if the Blessed Mother has to stand in line since apparently all women are devoid of sin.

Those problems alone would be enough to raise warning flags.  That so many - women and men - are just collapsing and accepting this, or grabbing the flag and running with it, even if they would have scoffed at such things barely a year ago, suggests something went horribly wrong.  Personally, I don't think most men will take it much longer.  And I fear when it finally stops; when men say enough, it will be like a bungee chord backlash, with many just concerns women have being steamrolled by the repercussions.  And that could be worse than the worst of the problems that legitimately need fixed.

Wednesday, June 13, 2018

It's a beautiful day in the neighborhood!

Mike Flynn (no, not that one) has posted his periodic list of observations.  He doesn't post much, but when he does, it's worth the read.  Clever and concise, intelligent and keenly perceptive, Mike Flynn is basically the little kid saying 'No, it looks like the emperor is actually naked, despite what all of our self-proclaimed betters insist.'  He accomplishes this by combining a keen mind able to sift through the data with the wisdom that is lacking in so much of our modern discourse.

My favorite is #5.  As we have been told so many times, Russia's collusion with Donald Trump to steal the 2016 election is the greatest scandal since Watergate.  And yet we have not found any evidence at all that it happened.  In fact, as Mr. Flynn points out, we've not been told just what Russia actually did and how or if it had any impact at all.  It's enough that the media joins the Democrats and the liberal popular culture to insist the Emperor is clearly not naked.  There should be no expectations that we'll actually hear evidence.  As we know in the post-Roy Moore era, evidence is old news, and not something post-modern hipsters worry about.

That's not to take away from his other points.  They are, as usual, interesting and a welcome alternative to the propaganda we are fed by American Pravda on a daily basis.   That's just the one that jumped out at me because it's presented as common knowledge when there is actually no evidence whatsoever that it happened, or if it did, just what it means. 

Et tu Beth Moore?

Beth Moore was a well known Bible instructor back in my Evangelical days. She was very popular among women, especially younger women.  She approached Bible study with a sort of 'Oprah does the Bible' feel.  She was, at least IMHO, better than many.  There were a few popular women Bible instructors back then, and they were often about 3 parts self-help (especially for women), 1 part Bible, while Ms. Moore was more 3 parts Bible, 2 parts self-help.

Nonetheless, I never cared for her whole 'girlfriend!' approach.  I thought it was shallow and made the whole production feel like some girl's talk show session rather than a serious unpacking of the Scriptural nuts and bolts.  In fairness, she should hardly be singled out any more than many men at the time should be singled out.  It was the rise of Talk Radio, Oprah style talk shows, cable news and the like. Everyone was getting in on the act.  Make the Bible into a neat tool for self-me-help, where I am the star and God is the supporting cast for my benefit.

Among serious ministers and scholars there was a sort of 'yeah, whatever' attitude toward the Beth Moore style.  Sort of like how Frasier Crane was looked at by his brother Niles in the sitcom Frasier:  A radio talk show psychiatrist peddling wares, rather than doing the serious work of a medical professional.  Most I knew tolerated it under the old 'better the Bible half baked than no Bible at all' principle.  After all, the world was quickly secularizing itself, and already in the late 90s you were beginning to hear talk of a day when our nation would become anti-, rather than merely post-Christian. So on the whole, taken together, mixed and stirred, most considered Ms. Moore at least a net positive.  Nonetheless, many questioned her success at the helm of that 'Tastes Great/Less Filling' movement that was gaining steam during that time, eventually to culminate in the Rick Warren phenomenon.

With that said, I was rather gobsmacked by a recent letter she published in the wake of the rather ambiguously defined, yet powerful, #MeToo movement.  In a nut shell?  According to her, she had to undergo years of sexism, discrimination and down right sexual harassment.  You'd think every other day was a tale of oppression, unfair treatment, mean spiritedness, and downright misogyny.  Why, at one point, a minister even said she was prettier than another woman Bible instructor!  No tales of rape or sexual assault.  Note that.  Not even gross sexual demands for climbing the ecclesiastical ladder.  Just cases where she was treated badly, presumably because ... she was a woman.

Allow me to take a less than popular appraisal of this.  First, for the record, I always thought Ms. Moore was quite attractive but, like most things, kept that opinion to myself. I didn't keep it to myself because I was afraid I'd be called a sexist if I noticed she was easy on the eyes.  I just didn't say anything because it's my nature to keep those things to myself.  I'm not touchy-feely, and I don't give my opinions about people loosely.  I suppose that's what comes from being raised by parents from the old WWII era.  You don't tell people outside the family what you're thinking (bonus The Godfather reference there).

And I'm glad I didn't.  Apparently I would have been lumped into the big pile of sexism and misogyny that she struggled to overcome during those years.  When reading her letter, which sounds like the latest wave of women accusing men of calling them pretty or treating them like women, I'm reminded of another pastor from back in the day.  He was pastor of a local, fast growing mega-church.  I think it had around 9,000 active attenders on a given Sunday.  In one sermon, he got up and said that, despite being a minister, sometimes he likes to look at pretty girls.  Wow. It caught some old timers off guard, but most saw it as a brave and courageous admission to the truth of reality.  He's a man, women are women, he's being liberated, all is right with the world.  My more progressive colleagues loved it.  That was then.  I wonder if anyone will dig up that sermon and use it against him.

I'm sorry if I sound skeptical, but I'm skeptical.  First, there is nothing out there in the #MeToo era holding women accountable for their role in the whole 'T&A/Grab'em if you want'em' culture.  Not that Ms. Moore was ever in that.  But she isn't saying anything other than 'bad man/victim woman' in this bold and courageous letter.  Second, just what defines sexual harassment, misogyny and old fashioned chauvinism seems to change and morph on a daily basis.  Finally, it seems predicated on the modern feminist mantra of 'equality whenever convenient for women.'  Is there a difference between men and women , is there not, when does it matter?  Is it just when women say so?  Or is it all just a vast patriarchal conspiracy from the beginning? If we're going to lambaste individuals and entire demographics, we need a little According to Hoyle.

I'm certainly not saying it never happened.  I heard all sorts of things back then that made my flesh crawl, sometimes from men, sometimes from women.  Often it was just individuals trying to scrape a little icing off of the post-Christian cake.  Nevertheless, to be brutally honest, if there was a tendency to look down on Beth Moore by the men of that time period, it seemed to have more to do with the content of her product, rather than the fact she was a woman.  But she doesn't have to look at that possibility now.  It's enough to say she's a woman, all negativity was due to her being a woman, men and the entire Christian culture in which she thrived has now been found guilty, let's move straight to sentencing.  Our modern enlightened society in action.  Christians will assume guilt, and reach out in love accordingly.

Oh, for the record, I understand that part of the problem is those supporters of Donald Trump who looked at his more nauseating treatment of women and turned a blind eye.  Like Jonah Goldberg, I get the whole Trump thing.  After decades of trying to fight liberalism's 'here today, gone later today' approach to values, they decided to throw their own principles out the window.  I think it was the wrong move.  Nonetheless, in response, I have no intention of throwing my own principles out the window in the opposite direction.  I still think what we said was true in the 90s is true today, regarding men, women, and God's plan for both and all;  #MeToo, Clinton, Trump, Democrats, the GOP, or the Media's latest fetish be damned.

I hope Ms. Moore follows this letter up with a better one that sounds less like it was penned in the back offices of CNN, and more like it was informed by a biblical world view that rejects our modern divisiveness between the two latest demographics.  We'll see. What I hope for and my chances of winning the Powerball are usually about one and the same.

Monday, June 11, 2018

To Christians who see compromise as our hope for the future

That is, those Christians who have concluded traditional and conservative Christianity was the only mischief, and we need to embrace the priorities and values of the postmodern world.  To those Christians I have one simple request:  Stop saying nobody is being persecuted in our country when you have people being told they will be punished, even legally, even financially, if they refuse to publicly compromise their Christian values.

I know, I know.  The left, and those who didn't have the stomach to keep fighting the good fight, have long focused on the fact that store clerks saying 'Happy Holidays' or businesses not putting Christmas symbols on coffee cups is not persecution.  Fair enough, even if we could argue, as a priest from W. Africa did a couple years ago, that such is how thing usually begin.  But telling people they must publicly compromise their Christian beliefs, or pay the price through financial ruin or other legal repercussions, is a form of persecution.

This is especially true because it is many of those same acquiescing Christians have made things like 'a living wage' and 'income equality' into pro-life issues.  I mean, even thinking of not giving people a financial viable living was akin to hating Jesus.  So if that's the case, then filing lawsuits and running people out of their businesses, taking their salaries, hurting them financially should be seen, not only as naked persecution, but based on the sacred right of a viable income, it ought to be a pro-life issue as well.

I say this because Mark Shea posted a reflection on the whole gay wedding cake issue.  Let's be honest, the LGBTQ is being used to drive a wedge between those who will compromise their faith to conform to the modern Left, and those who won't.  And it's doing a bang-up job.  Unlike the first few decades of modern liberalism, the Left is now putting teeth into its attacks.  It seeks to convert all to its gospel, and is willing to use the power of the State to achieve that end.  For several generations, the most the Left did was mock, laugh at, make fun of, deride, belittle and sometimes spit upon Americans of a traditional moral and religious framework.

But with homosexuality, it now has a way to demand conformity to its moral dictates at the expense of religious exercise and religious liberty.  That's what this is about.  And already we're seeing plenty of rats jumping that sinking ship.  Mark himself once called this a naked assault on religious liberty.  He pointed out the obvious, that gay couples scouring the neighborhood, ignoring dozens of businesses that would gladly serve them, in order to find one Christian business owner to drag before the courts, is nothing but a deliberate effort to strip away the right to not be liberal.

But that was then.  Now Mark casts scorn on those business owners who would not concede the modern morality, judging them as either 'Christianists', or likely hypocrites who have no business complaining.  His solution?  Passive resistance.  Make the cakes, make the cards, take the pictures, affirm the pure love within a gay relationship, and find some other way to say 'but I still don't agree.'  Fair enough.

But to take Mark seriously, Mark must admit a couple truths.  First, let's stop pretending like the only evangelizing force in the world is Christianity.  There are many evangelizing forces, including the modern Left.  It is actively seeking to get Christians to renounce their faith and values and conform to its dictates.  Its effectiveness can be seen by doing an analysis of Mark Shea c. 1998 and comparing it to Mark Shea c. 2018.  I can't think of two individuals with less in common, and it is a testimony to the effectiveness of the Left's evangelizing tactics.

The second, however, is no less important.  Stop, as I said above, stop saying nobody is being persecuted.  They are.  Having the goverment walk into your shop and demand you compromise your freedom of religious exercise under threat of financial ruin is - at best - persecution.  What are you waiting for?  Christians with shaved heads marching into the gas chambers?   Just stop.  The Left has been moving lines in the sand forward for decades, and Christians have fallen back and fallen back time and again.  Now it is actively seeking to punish, with the power of the State, those who don't conform.

To ignore this is no longer a case of denial.  It's an outright lie that smacks of cowardliness or treason, rather than principle.  So just stop.  Admit we are being converted, and admit that the Left is taking it to the next level and seeking to persecute those who resist.  And don't let those who once insisted they would never punish anyone for opposing homosexual marriage insist there is nothing wrong with punishing people for opposing homosexual marriage.  At some point credibility needs to take a hit or two.

Do these two things, and I will consider the suggestion of passive resistance.  Otherwise, it comes off less as a bold suggestion in the tradition of St. Barnabas, and more a retreat, hoping against hope that it will be other Christians who pay the price; that when they come for them, that's all they will do.

BTW, the comments in Mark's post are a potpourri of all the reasons why we are losing the fight for the heart and soul of the Dying West, as well as showcasing the clear and obvious desire to convert Christians to the New Faith. I might do a post on those in the future.  Right now, perhaps the best example is this comment.  Note the solution the comment proposes: you can refuse to bake the cake, just lie about why; don't publicly admit that it has to do with your religious principles.  It will be interesting to see where Mark comes down on this particular solution:  keep your religion under the bushel and lie about why.  If nothing else demonstrate a society of religious persecution, it is seeing that as some form of compromise. 

Another bullet dodged

Looks like there was yet another attempt to Joe Stalin our history by removing a statue of Jefferson because  - Slavery!  Whew.  Sanity and humility and common sense and intelligence and all those fine qualities prevailed.  The postmodern iconoclastic witch hunt missed this one.

Granted, it will continue.  Concepts such as humility, forgiveness, mercy, reconciliation, understanding, gratitude - these are anathema to identity politics.  That's why identity politics is so crucial for the Leftist arsenal.  Any sin can become the sum total of one's identity. There is no call to forgive or approach with humility or a desire to reconcile.   It is resentment, revenge and destruction.  And those are just what any good Leftist revolution craves.

Is it Christian?  No.  Does it have any bearing on Christian values or world views?  No, of course not.  But Christians have already thrown so many values, ideals, beliefs, and doctrines out the window to accommodate modernity, I don't see why antiquated notions of forgiveness and reconciliation should be any different.  Look for the capital formerly named after a vile slave owner to be renamed in generations to come, as well as putting an end to all the principles and freedoms that the capital represented.

Remember, the goal of the modernist Left is to overthrow the nation established by the Founding Fathers, and defended by veterans for the first two hundred years.

Google does have its priorities in line

So I noticed last week that the anniversary of D-Day came and went and not a single doodle from Google.  Of course fair is fair.  I didn't notice it mentioned on either the morning national news shows or even our local news casts in the evening.  So there you go.  At least a few print outlets covered some stories about the landings.

The thing with Google is that it's notorious for digging up the most obscure trivia to commemorate as well as paying tribute to certain significant individuals and events, such as MLK Day or the commencement of Ramadan.  That it missed even the 74th anniversary of D-Day seemed quite strange.  Though when I was notified that it had missed the 70th as well, and only posted something due to a backlash, I couldn't help but think it's less accidental than we care to admit.

Well good news everyone.  Google is back and running and posting those important pieces of history that Americans and all people of the world can be proud of, like this:

Remember kids, there is a concerted effort to put an end to the nation built by the Founding Fathers, and defended by the first two hundred years of veterans.

Prayers for Charles Krauthammer and the suicide pandemic

Last week was a bad week for celebrities.  The suicides of Anthony Bourdain and Kate Spade shed light on a problem that has been well known, if not overly covered, for several years now.  Suicides have been growing fast in the US, and continue to increase.  And it's not just in the United States either.  Countries around the world, in and out of Europe, are seeing increases in suicide.  It's almost like the same factors that have brought the new phenomenon of mass killings might somehow be linked to suicide.  It's almost as if something in the last half century or so isn't working.

I know, I know.  Suicides have always happened, are complex, and can impact those in and out of religious circles.  But here's the thing.  We can appeal to past suicide rates all we want.  Never in human history has there been such an emphasis on psychological and emotional well being as now; never has there been so many safeguards erected for the sole purpose of preventing such mental spirals as that which could lead to suicide.  And yet, once again, we're seeing that after tearing down almost everything the old world said was right and wrong, good and bad, we're left at best with problems as bad as they ever were.  In some cases, we could argue they are worse.

I'll leave others to scramble for a cause.  Suffice to say I'll listen to materialists insist it's all physical, and Christians and other religious individuals look to spiritual causes.  I will not listen at all to Christians, no matter how trained in mental health, act as if they never heard of God or the Holy Spirit, it must all be a matter of chemicals or biological deficiencies.  Nope.  Not going to go there.

As if the suicide news wasn't enough, Charles Krauthammer announced that he has weeks to live, owing to a terminal case of cancer.  He has been Nazi and Commie to so many who themselves have a history of being disastrously wrong, I can't help but think he brought something of value to our national discourse.  Unlike the previous two celebrities I mentioned, however, Mr. Krauthammer chose to endure.  Despite receiving a life altering injury that left him crippled for good, he persevered and chose life.  And like Lou Gehrig before him, he departs this earthly stage with grace and class, not self pity or resentment - at least none he has shown.

I don't know.  Perhaps it's a matter of perception, of attitude, of the way in which we look at life and the world around us.  I became a Christian almost 30 years ago, and in that time, Christians sound more like the world of agnosticism I left than the world of agnosticism sounds like any traditional manifestation of Christianity.  Yet there are still those who hearken back to a world in which our place is within it, not above it; an age when we had jobs to do and duty to ideals higher than ourselves.  Not a world in which the only reason God decided to exist in the first place was to create a universe centered around the awesomeness of me getting whatever I want, as soon as I want, with whomever I want, as often as I want, free of charge and if things go wrong it's everyone else's fault.

A clash of world views I suppose.  I get what I want, others be damned, or I don't always get what I want, because I have other things to consider. Who knows?  Perhaps that 'me' focused approach isn't something new, nor is the idea that we owe to others above ourselves.  And you never know.  Perhaps looking at the history of those differences could reveal something when considering suicide through the ages.  I dunno, just thinking out loud.

But prayers for the loved ones left behind.  I will not celebrate or make martyrs of those who killed themselves and left their loved ones behind to agonize for the rest of their lives.  Early on I was told that suicide is the most selfish of all sins, and I'll keep that.  Nonetheless, I do pray for their souls and their loved ones who must shoulder the burden they were given.  I will pray for all who take their own lives, as well as their loved ones, in that manner.

I will also pray for, and give thanks for, those who through no fault of their own are smitten with ill fortune and decide to make all of the gift of life they can, thinking of their contributions to the world, of their loved ones, and all who know and care for them. May God bless them and give them the strength they need to die well, and shower blessings and grace upon those who benefit from their example.

Why Trump remains popular among his supporters

In this one picture:

Fact is, the Left has been pushing for a post-American, one global reality since the end of the Cold War.  Global markets, global unions, global corporations, global finances, global agencies - these were fast overtaking concerns some had for the well-being of their own nations and fellow citizens. 

During the 2016 election, when everyone - including yours truly - assumed a Clinton victory, more than one progressive pundit or post-conservative speaker conceded the inevitability of a one world government and economic reality.  Were Americans being left behind?  Sure.  I don't remember anyone denying it.  But we were told that's the price others have to pay.  Change can be tough.  You can't make an omelet without broken eggs and all.

The Left's big mistake was that they miscalculated just how many made up that 'sacrificial demographic.'  They didn't reckon how many were in that group of miserable ones in Middle America who had to pay the price so those along the two coasts could continue accumulating more wealth and power.  The pundits, media and Washington inner circles had spent years propping up the Obama legacy, ignoring the obvious warning signs, and apparently believed their own press clippings.

Alas, too many were hurting and feeling left behind and weren't willing to be the sacrificial lambs for a congealing section of the population concerned for itself to the exclusion of any other considerations.  So they voted.  Enter Trump.

I have no idea if what he did at the summit is good or not.  I'm not an economist.  I could add more to brain surgery before I'd have much to contribute in an economics forum. He could be creating future disasters, or solving problems.  My guess is, whatever he is doing, it's with a keen eye toward his base.  And that's not the base of evil Nazis wishing they could resurrect Hitler and create a new master race, though I'm sure there are those who fit that description. 

No, the ones cheering this picture would be his base who were told that if they're committing suicide at higher rates, it's likely they're just pissed they've lost their white privilege in this racist nation that is thankfully going the way of the dodo bird - even if they're black, Asian, or any other demographic.  It would be that base tired of being told they must suffer so that their self-proclaimed betters can continue on that path toward money, drugs and lots and lots of sex.

And pictures like the one above, far from repulsing them, will endear them to Trump all the more.  If those who would gladly dismiss their suffering are upset by the picture?  All the better.

Robert De Niro demonstrates why outrage about Trump's behavior falls on deaf ears

Yep.  At another celebration of liberal values intended to keep our eyes off the ball of reality, the Tony Awards pulled all the appropriate levers.  But it was De Niros' vulgarity laden rant against Trump, to the thunderous applause of the free thinkers in the audience who all think alike, that reminds us why screams about Trump's bad behavior are merely pots calling a kettle black.

Friday, June 8, 2018

What rule of law?

So a California judge has been removed because he ruled according to the dictates of the case.  Let me begin by admitting that I am no lawyer.  I know no more about the law than what I picked up watching Matlock with the sound off.  I'm not a legal expert.  I have no idea about legal stuff.  But here is what I noticed.

Many experts - and I mean many - were extremely bothered by the thought of removing the judge over this decision.   Legal experts who were men, women, liberal, conservative, pro-#MeToo - you name it: they all said this is a dangerous precedent.  Those who supported his removal? I couldn't help but notice that the bulk of them appealed more to emotional arguments. There was little talk about whether it was legally appropriate.

And yet, the second group won.  Just as, during the Roy Moore campaign, we watched our nation and its media power players embrace the idea that evidence and due process are for the courts, but outside of the courts your arse belong to us, now we're seeing it creep into the courts.  Right now, women are getting what they want, no matter the long term cost.  Les Wexnor would be proud.

If you're paying attention and looking at the forest rather than the trees, you'll notice that we're fast approaching the greatest threat to our freedoms and equality that our nation has experienced since its founding.  We're literally working to frame our nation as one based on witch hunts and lynch mobs, roaming the internet, going back decades to find something you said or did, pushing back against the need for due process and presumption of innocence, making it clear that liberty does not belong to those who do not conform to the Left.  All of these are where we are, not where we are going.  If we don't do something about it, it will only get worse.

I didn't know Jesus was all about race

Apparently, per Fr. James Martin, these last centuries have been a bummer for Jesus since He obviously would feel more welcome with people of his own supposed skin color.  No, really:

The idea that Jesus would feel more welcome around one skin color versus another should, most charitably, be seen as stupidity.  More appropriately it should be called heresy.  Nonetheless, Fr. Martin is a darling of the Christian Left, the New Prolife Catholic movement, and, of course, the modernist world at large.  So it will go unnoticed, ignored, or once again we'll have to adjust the doctrines of the Faith to conform to the latest, hippest, and acknowledge that it's not the content of our character, but the color of our skin that makes the difference.

In further news from the Sex, Drugs and Rock and Roll era

This might come as a shock, but Syphilis and Gonorrhea rates continue to rise in England.  England isn't alone.  It's been making quite the comeback for some time in a variety of countries.

As I've said, there is no limit to the suffering, death and carnage we are willing to endure to continue dangling a world of hedonism and debauchery in front of up and coming generations.  It is, after all, the sizzle of liberalism's steak.  How many would accept some of liberalism's more restrictive and intrusive and judgmental propositions if liberalism tied itself to some puritanical ethic of self restraint and moderation where various lascivious designs are concerned?

So despite decades of flinging condoms by the billions at the problem, we're left with over 36 million dead from AIDS, with thousands still infected every year in America alone.  Of course there have been flat out over 60 million abortions in the United States (over 18 million being African American, contributing the decline numbers in America's black population) since Roe v Wade.

Death from drug abuse is notoriously difficult to gauge.  Just in terms of overdosing, it's fair to estimate that approx. 15000 to 20000, on average, per year have died as a direct result of OD.  There are, no doubt, those who have died in other, less directly related connections to a recreational drug habit.  We won't discuss the massive proportion of violent crimes linked to drugs, since people will insist if we make drugs legal it will all go away.  Suffice to say, addiction and overdoses won't go away.

And then we have the breakdown of the family, the sex-first mentality, the notion that marriage is there to provide me with a good romp in the sack, and if it isn't good, then it's sayonara and I'm off to find someone who can turn me on better.

Yet there just doesn't seem to be a breaking point.  It appears that the progressive movement's promise of unlimited sexual and drug induced ecstasy is not going to be backpedaled, no matter how many tens of millions of lives have to be lost.  We're not even discussing things like the assisted suicide and euthanasia movements that are logical outgrowths of our modern abortion culture which, naturally, is required to sustain our modern sex culture.  We're just dealing with the millions of lives lost as a direct result of our drugs, sex and rock world we've tried so hard to build.

Quite the body count if you think on it.  And yet, at best, the most you hear from Christian quarters is 'please, let's just show mercy and understanding.'  Really?  What other time in history did something lead to the death of people by the tens of millions and we decide the best reaction was 'mercy and understanding' in lieu of anything else?   It appears that actively promoting what has killed millions, and choosing to act as if it's merely a polite disagreement is our prime directive.  As my sons say, we spend so much time trashing people in the past in order to avoid admitting to the deplorable mess we've made of the world today.

Thursday, June 7, 2018

Masterpiece Cakeshop and future life in the Catacombs

Rod Dreher is not optimistic.  Neither am I.  The inevitable loss of freedom and liberty in America, if not the world, is coming.  It can't be denied.  Much of the world would gladly live in a more timeful age, when God made rulers and kings and subjects to grovel before them.  In the West, the leftist desire to eliminate any freedoms that our self-proclaimed betters don't bestow upon us has been inching forward.

Regarding homosexuality, I'm of the opinion that there are three groups.  There are those who fully support anything to do with sex.  That is a growing segment of society since everything in our culture preaches it: scientists and scholars, academics and educators, the press, the entertainment and arts culture, many religious and political factions.  They say the emperor is not naked, and so it is true.

The second group makes up that dying breed of orthodox (little 'O') Christians, and others in the great religions, who reject such a model of humanity.  They are simply dying by generational elimination.  They aren't going to change, but their time - it appears - is coming to an end.

The third group is seldom acknowledged, but I have a feeling it is larger than we think.   That's the group that personally, deep down, doesn't think the various digressions from heterosexual normality are healthy, right, normal, or whatever, they just don't want to be pegged a Nazi bigot, lose their jobs, or face lawsuits or prison time.  These are the ones who were pretty sure about 70 years ago that something was wrong in the German woods, but went on with their days, insisting they didn't smell anything strange.  Nothing, it turns out, encourages apathy like threatening people.

There is a fourth group of course.  That would be those in the second group who can tell the way the wind is blowing.  While technically they don't accept the coming storm, they aren't going to give up suffering for Jesus on six figures a year either.  They believe that they can compromise just enough so that if the barbed wire fences ever go up, they'll own a plot of land on the outside looking in.  If they have to turn on their brethren and sistren, that's the price they have to pay.  But we won't talk about them because you have to exercise a certain level of judgmentalism in order to presume who makes up this group, since naturally they won't be admitting their true motives.

That third group is the group you want.  They're not bad, evil, or dumb.  They just don't have the time to care.  I'm not saying those in the first group are bad or evil, but with each passing day, they make it clear that this country - if not this world - is not big enough for them and those who don't conform 100% to their world view.    It's that third group, however, that makes it possible for them to essentially overthrow the 2500 year march toward democracy, equality and freedom, and replace it with yet another Utopian vision doomed to fail.

BTW, if you're waiting for the Left to stand up and declare that an elimination of freedoms is the end game, then you're going to wait until it's happened.  Nothing in history occurs that way.  Nobody ever says 'follow us, and we promise we'll put you in shackles and send you to the cotton fields.'  They get there by the ages old tendency we have of wanting to hope against hope that the obvious that is happening isn't really happening.  Or, to be blunt, it happens because enough people decide that when the team is losing, it's time to jump ship and join the winning team, even if it's the one they used to oppose.

One more thing.  For those poo-pooing this idea that Christians are in any way being persecuted, consider this story.  A gym owner in Indianapolis chose not to host a Gay Pride event.  A significant number of his staff quit over that.  He's now out of business.  Merely one of a growing number of similar cases regarding those who refuse to accept liberal values.  The whole 'nobody is hurting Christians' comeback that keeps our Group #4 and Group #3 blissfully apathetic is only going to last so long.  Eventually, they'll need to admit the obvious.  You can't wait until people are rounded up and sent to camps before you finally admit to things.  That's because if you wait until then, it's too late.

Bonus if you notice Mark's typical embrace of the modern acceptable racism that will get you invited to all the best parties and accolades from all the beautiful people.  But that's how evil often works, and it's why Christians have so often embraced it through the ages.

Wednesday, June 6, 2018

Apparently Google couldn't think of anything to commemorate today

Like the 74th anniversary of the D-Day landings.
Screenshot from Google's main page which is typically designed to commemorate something significant for the day

If you're shocked that Google, a company able to find the most obscure historical events and individuals to commemorate, would miss this, then you've not been paying attention.

Here you go Google, just to jar your memories:

From the caption: "Into the Jaws of Death..."

Liberal Puritanism strikes again

For the record, as a disclaimer, please let me begin by stating that never in my entire life have I watched a Miss America pageant, or any similar contests.  Never appealed to me.  So what I have to say is not due to resentment or a desire to see things go as they always have.  For all I know, they had a unicycle contest as part of the overall scoring.  I don't know.

I do know that the modern Left is bipolar in its backlash against our nation of hedonism, narcissism, debauchery and amorality that it hoisted on us for all these years.  On one hand, there is simply no limit to the millions of rotting corpses in the wake of the sex and drugs revolution that is going to get us to stop putting our libidos above all consideration.  Really.  Tens of millions have died as a direct result of our post-Christian, hedonistic approach to sex, but we still keep pushing along.

And yet, at the same time we don't. Because parallel to the same 'grab it if you want it' approach (just wear a condom) is the #MeToo backlash that has made even suggesting a woman smile a form of sexual intimidation.  Really.  I don't know if there are numbers high enough to calculate all of the myriad things that are being called sexist, misogynistic, anti-woman, hateful, whatever.  And even basic, common sense, traditional relations between men and women, or approaches to the sexes that only a few months ago were merely seen as a logical outcropping of humanity's ages old understanding of sexual differences, are being cast into the bonfires of our idiocy.

Taking away the swimsuit contest?  Eh.  Personally I couldn't care less where the pageant goes.  But it's this idea that any acknowledgement of beauty is now some sin.  That men wanting women to look nice is some misogynistic (boy am I tired of that word) attack on the empowerment of women. From the Ancient Greeks to the Song of Solomon, to the great Renaissance Painters to up to a few months ago, there has always been an understanding that beauty, including physical beauty, has its place.  But in the stark-raving batnuts insanity of 21st century post-Christian West, there can be nothing of the sort.  All is wrong and all must be changed.  All that is real must be denied.  All that was done was merely the result of the inferiority of all involved, and must be eradicated.

There is a careless, almost mental level of puritanism at work.  In fact, in fairness, we are going where the puritans would never have gone.  Contrary to popular belief, the puritans were not against sex, or even fun (their first Thanksgiving was three days of feasting, games, celebration and fun - how many of us have three straight days of fun and celebrating during Thanksgiving?).  Likewise, puritanism often gets lumped into that odd 19th Century phenomenon known as Victorianism.  So I'm not sure puritanism is even a good comparison.

This is not some defense of puritanism, but it is to say we're going beyond where even the Puritans would go, and yet without the consistency, or even sanity.   If the Puritans went too far, at least they did so in ways that were consistent with their set of beliefs.  Today?  Trace for me a consistent line in our approach to, well, anything and I'll eat your hat.

Stupid Gun Control Memes

Memes, on the whole, make you stupid.  I'm sorry.  Every now and then one comes through that makes a fair point with wit and cleverness, but usually it's more like this:

Add the tendency of memes to the typical vacancy of too many Gun Control activists, and it's a poisonous combination of rage and dumb.

The answer to the meme's question is glaringly obvious.  Only an idiot, an illiterate person, or someone who cares not a whit about facts or reality would ponder this.  I don't need to point out why it's stupid.  Anyone with the ability to turn on an electronic device and find this page can see it.

That Mark and others think they just nailed a Cicero and have brought gun rights activists to their knees is emblematic of Gun Control's glaring problems.  All rage, no common sense.


It's so easy for us, as generations come and go, to forget what other generations did.  It's still disconcerting to talk to younger people and find they have almost no knowledge of what was done. I think there are certain things that must never be forgotten.    Schultz