The actual crisis in America

Peggy Noonan cuts to the heart:

People in politics talk about the right track/wrong track numbers as an indicator of public mood. This week Gallup had a poll showing only 24% of Americans feel we’re on the right track as a nation. That’s a historic low. Political professionals tend, understandably, to think it’s all about the economy—unemployment, foreclosures, we’re going in the wrong direction. I’ve long thought that public dissatisfaction is about more than the economy, that it’s also about our culture, or rather the flat, brute, highly sexualized thing we call our culture.

Now I’d go a step beyond that. I think more and more people are worried about the American character—who we are and what kind of adults we are raising.

Every story that has broken through the past few weeks has been about who we are as a people. And they are all disturbing.

She then runs down the list:  The GSA scandal, the Secret Service scandal, the soldiers posing with body parts scandal, the YouTubes of the tourist getting beaten in Baltimore while passersby laugh and the woman crying as she’s being felt up by the TSA.

In isolation, these stories may sound like the usual sins and scandals, but in the aggregate they seem like something more disturbing, more laden with implication, don’t they? And again, these are only from the past week.

The leveling or deterioration of public behavior has got to be worrying people who have enough years on them to judge with some perspective.

Something seems to be going terribly wrong.

via America’s Crisis of Character – WSJ.com.

Could it be cultural breakdown, a state in which there is no longer a sense of community that exerts any kind of social pressure to do what is right?

What do you think?  And is there any way to restore a sense of civilization and character?  (Politics will clearly not do that, since it provides so many more examples of this crisis of character.)

HT:  Doug Reynolds

About Gene Veith

Professor of Literature at Patrick Henry College, the Director of the Cranach Institute at Concordia Theological Seminary, a columnist for World Magazine and TableTalk, and the author of 18 books on different facets of Christianity & Culture.

  • Pete

    I am old enough (don’t let the photo fool you) to recall people who warned us that the acceptance of legalized abortion would lead to such as this. And not that that acceptance was causative – merely another ratchet click down the slippery slope. It appears they were correct. (Apologies for the badly mixed metaphor – things don’t really “click” down a slippery slope, but you know what I meant.)

  • Pete

    I am old enough (don’t let the photo fool you) to recall people who warned us that the acceptance of legalized abortion would lead to such as this. And not that that acceptance was causative – merely another ratchet click down the slippery slope. It appears they were correct. (Apologies for the badly mixed metaphor – things don’t really “click” down a slippery slope, but you know what I meant.)

  • http://enterthevein.wordpress.com J. Dean

    This is the way of people: we are sinful, and as such if we are not rescued by the gospel we will grow worse and worse.

    I don’t know whether or not there will ever be a national “revival” (and I use that word carefully, meaning a real, sovereign work of mass conversion, not the emotional, altar-call, Finney-influenced revivalism seen in many churches on Sunday mornings), but if there is to be a revival nationally, it will come through the preaching of the gospel of Jesus Christ, period. It will come when the church stops abandoning sound doctrine for the sake of trying to look appealing to the world and runs back to the Scriptures-ALL of the Scriptures-as the Word of God.

    Of course, this in and of itself is no guarantee of a national revival, and the point of the church being faithful to God is not primarily to “have revival” but to glorify God (in once sense, conversion of unbelievers is incidental to this). Nevertheless, real change will come when the church rediscovers sound doctrine, including the gospel, and lives accordingly.

  • http://enterthevein.wordpress.com J. Dean

    This is the way of people: we are sinful, and as such if we are not rescued by the gospel we will grow worse and worse.

    I don’t know whether or not there will ever be a national “revival” (and I use that word carefully, meaning a real, sovereign work of mass conversion, not the emotional, altar-call, Finney-influenced revivalism seen in many churches on Sunday mornings), but if there is to be a revival nationally, it will come through the preaching of the gospel of Jesus Christ, period. It will come when the church stops abandoning sound doctrine for the sake of trying to look appealing to the world and runs back to the Scriptures-ALL of the Scriptures-as the Word of God.

    Of course, this in and of itself is no guarantee of a national revival, and the point of the church being faithful to God is not primarily to “have revival” but to glorify God (in once sense, conversion of unbelievers is incidental to this). Nevertheless, real change will come when the church rediscovers sound doctrine, including the gospel, and lives accordingly.

  • Truth unites… And divides

    Lutheran culture warrior Dr. Gene Veith: “Could it be cultural breakdown, a state in which there is no longer a sense of community that exerts any kind of social pressure to do what is right?

    What do you think?  And is there any way to restore a sense of civilization and character.”

    Yes. Baptism is gospel. Baptize everyone, including infants. Catechise as confessional Lutherans.

    Amend one part of the Constitution and make Confessional Lutheranism the state church.

  • Truth unites… And divides

    Lutheran culture warrior Dr. Gene Veith: “Could it be cultural breakdown, a state in which there is no longer a sense of community that exerts any kind of social pressure to do what is right?

    What do you think?  And is there any way to restore a sense of civilization and character.”

    Yes. Baptism is gospel. Baptize everyone, including infants. Catechise as confessional Lutherans.

    Amend one part of the Constitution and make Confessional Lutheranism the state church.

  • http://www.quietedwaters.com Josh

    Unlike Truth unites… And divides (@3), I do think there’s been a cultural breakdown in morality and social pressure to behave rightly. While religion is one factor in that breakdown, it is not the only factor.

    Both Peggy Noonan (as quoted) and David Brooks have written extensively about it recently, from a secular perspective. In an age of tolerance and relative truth, it has become difficult to convince anyone that external morality exists, much less that we ought to pressure others to abide by it.

  • http://www.quietedwaters.com Josh

    Unlike Truth unites… And divides (@3), I do think there’s been a cultural breakdown in morality and social pressure to behave rightly. While religion is one factor in that breakdown, it is not the only factor.

    Both Peggy Noonan (as quoted) and David Brooks have written extensively about it recently, from a secular perspective. In an age of tolerance and relative truth, it has become difficult to convince anyone that external morality exists, much less that we ought to pressure others to abide by it.

  • http://blog.mikeoconnor.net Michael P. O’Connor

    I believe the problem stems not from poloticitions only promising what they will do for “you” (generic you)

    Democrat: I will give you (you being the poor) more “free” money

    Republicans: I will cut your (your being the non-poor) taxes

    There is no more, we have to do this because this is right, we (we as a nation, read every one) will suffer a bit but it the right thing to do. No more we choice to do this not because it is easy but because it is hard.

    The nation (read the people) look for what the polotiction promise to give to them. Not what is right or wrong to do.

  • http://blog.mikeoconnor.net Michael P. O’Connor

    I believe the problem stems not from poloticitions only promising what they will do for “you” (generic you)

    Democrat: I will give you (you being the poor) more “free” money

    Republicans: I will cut your (your being the non-poor) taxes

    There is no more, we have to do this because this is right, we (we as a nation, read every one) will suffer a bit but it the right thing to do. No more we choice to do this not because it is easy but because it is hard.

    The nation (read the people) look for what the polotiction promise to give to them. Not what is right or wrong to do.

  • Booklover

    I think the change happened before the legalization of abortion. It started with the mass acceptance of birth control. Men used to know in their gut that their primary purpose was to support their wives and children. Now a typical man sends the mother of his young children to work, with her IUD implanted, so that she can make his truck payment. A positive change must start with the men. If they can’t be bound to their families, how will the larger culture be changed?

  • Booklover

    I think the change happened before the legalization of abortion. It started with the mass acceptance of birth control. Men used to know in their gut that their primary purpose was to support their wives and children. Now a typical man sends the mother of his young children to work, with her IUD implanted, so that she can make his truck payment. A positive change must start with the men. If they can’t be bound to their families, how will the larger culture be changed?

  • fws

    fact:

    we could rather immediately eliminate most of these social problems by all embracing islam or mormonism or any number of other religions.

    Those who think christianizing everyone is the end of all this needs to only look at when virtually everyone was baptized around the time of the reformation. ahem.

    it seems that we all reach for the Aristotelian solution thinking that there is something “christian” about that. Aristotle says we improve moral character and so our actions by doing what? By training our minds to think in the right way!

    most of your posts here that touch on morality Dr Veith are about Aristotle’s process of Virtue Ethics. And the confessions do say, that , as concerns morality, nothing can be demanded beyond that.

    So my suggestion is Luthers:

    For Children produce stories from the bible showing how God rewards good behavior and punishes bad behavior (preface to the catechism), next, translate aesops fables to read to your children as Luther did for his, next…. encourage everyone to study Aristotle’s Virtue Ethics and do what Aristotle suggests.

    Morality will return . it requires lots of mental and physical discipline.

    And this process requires no Christ and no regeneration! have at it. God demands that we do this! What Aristotle teaches is nothing less than the Divine Law of God that is written in our Reason and that the Confessions identify by the term “Natural Law” (not to be confused with the Thomist meaning of that same term!).

    When we do all this, we should take care to not call this good work “christian.

  • fws

    fact:

    we could rather immediately eliminate most of these social problems by all embracing islam or mormonism or any number of other religions.

    Those who think christianizing everyone is the end of all this needs to only look at when virtually everyone was baptized around the time of the reformation. ahem.

    it seems that we all reach for the Aristotelian solution thinking that there is something “christian” about that. Aristotle says we improve moral character and so our actions by doing what? By training our minds to think in the right way!

    most of your posts here that touch on morality Dr Veith are about Aristotle’s process of Virtue Ethics. And the confessions do say, that , as concerns morality, nothing can be demanded beyond that.

    So my suggestion is Luthers:

    For Children produce stories from the bible showing how God rewards good behavior and punishes bad behavior (preface to the catechism), next, translate aesops fables to read to your children as Luther did for his, next…. encourage everyone to study Aristotle’s Virtue Ethics and do what Aristotle suggests.

    Morality will return . it requires lots of mental and physical discipline.

    And this process requires no Christ and no regeneration! have at it. God demands that we do this! What Aristotle teaches is nothing less than the Divine Law of God that is written in our Reason and that the Confessions identify by the term “Natural Law” (not to be confused with the Thomist meaning of that same term!).

    When we do all this, we should take care to not call this good work “christian.

  • fws

    american christianity has contributed to this moral decay by “spiritualizing” the process that all men must follow to be ethical and moral.

    American christianity has done this by inserting into the american conscience that our right thinking is somehow what it means to be a good person. So we all sit around battling over what the right way to think is! this is useless if it ends there.

    God demands our ACTS of goodness towards others. Cf St James. He is right! And when christians do stuff claiming that God demands a set of rules that clearly offers no creaturely benefit or comfort to anyone (rules on drinking, dancing, card playing, thinking, requirements of celebacy) , then reason identifies this, properly, and calls it for what it is : “hipocracy”.

    There is a reason christian morality is often called out ans hipocracy. What is claimed to be christian and moral is neither. It does not follow the Golden Rule but instead follows the made-up rule that morality is about ordering others to obey God rather than our obeying God strictly and only by following the Golden Rule.

  • fws

    american christianity has contributed to this moral decay by “spiritualizing” the process that all men must follow to be ethical and moral.

    American christianity has done this by inserting into the american conscience that our right thinking is somehow what it means to be a good person. So we all sit around battling over what the right way to think is! this is useless if it ends there.

    God demands our ACTS of goodness towards others. Cf St James. He is right! And when christians do stuff claiming that God demands a set of rules that clearly offers no creaturely benefit or comfort to anyone (rules on drinking, dancing, card playing, thinking, requirements of celebacy) , then reason identifies this, properly, and calls it for what it is : “hipocracy”.

    There is a reason christian morality is often called out ans hipocracy. What is claimed to be christian and moral is neither. It does not follow the Golden Rule but instead follows the made-up rule that morality is about ordering others to obey God rather than our obeying God strictly and only by following the Golden Rule.

  • fws

    pete @ 1

    expand your time horizon.

    not only abortion, but also infanticide were fully accepted by greco roman society. And then that changed. So your theory is wrong.

    And the decline and fall of the Roman Empire happened at precisely the same time that it was in the process of moving from those evils to becoming quite thouroughly christianized.

    overlay that on all your theories please.

  • fws

    pete @ 1

    expand your time horizon.

    not only abortion, but also infanticide were fully accepted by greco roman society. And then that changed. So your theory is wrong.

    And the decline and fall of the Roman Empire happened at precisely the same time that it was in the process of moving from those evils to becoming quite thouroughly christianized.

    overlay that on all your theories please.

  • fws

    dare to be Lutheran. read the Lutheran Confessions.

  • fws

    dare to be Lutheran. read the Lutheran Confessions.

  • SKPeterson

    But, Frank. Discipline requires, well, uh … discipline. And that’s hard work. I mean what am I paying my taxes for? Shouldn’t there be a government agency out there that can take care of disciplining people so I can be left alone in my own little cocoon? I mean my time is better spent tevoing Mad Men than it is in seeking to improve myself. And if I really want self improvement I’d rather do it the easy Jean Houston way where I can feel good about how great a guy I am.

  • SKPeterson

    But, Frank. Discipline requires, well, uh … discipline. And that’s hard work. I mean what am I paying my taxes for? Shouldn’t there be a government agency out there that can take care of disciplining people so I can be left alone in my own little cocoon? I mean my time is better spent tevoing Mad Men than it is in seeking to improve myself. And if I really want self improvement I’d rather do it the easy Jean Houston way where I can feel good about how great a guy I am.

  • fws

    skp @ 11

    the Vocations used to be called “The Disciplines”.

    It would be wholesome to return to that mindset.

    You pay your taxes SKP because it kills you to do so. God’s Law is having it’s way with you right there. And that work in YOU results in social leeches like me getting the opposite of what we deserve: MERCY free government handouts!

    the justice that the Law works in YOU and enforces discipline in YOU by giving you the punishment you deserve if you are undisciplined, ends up making your Old Adam fodder for the Mercy that is the Eternal will of God for ME!

    Thanks for your contribution to my happiness! I pray, daily , that my Old Adam kills himself in working to return the favor to you and others! :)

  • fws

    skp @ 11

    the Vocations used to be called “The Disciplines”.

    It would be wholesome to return to that mindset.

    You pay your taxes SKP because it kills you to do so. God’s Law is having it’s way with you right there. And that work in YOU results in social leeches like me getting the opposite of what we deserve: MERCY free government handouts!

    the justice that the Law works in YOU and enforces discipline in YOU by giving you the punishment you deserve if you are undisciplined, ends up making your Old Adam fodder for the Mercy that is the Eternal will of God for ME!

    Thanks for your contribution to my happiness! I pray, daily , that my Old Adam kills himself in working to return the favor to you and others! :)

  • Pete

    fws @9

    Good point, which is why I included the “symptom, not cause” comment. I think your Fall of Rome analogy bolsters my point – Roman society had gone down the slippery slope to the point that extinction of the status quo and replacement with a better civil system (happened to be Christian, but you’re right – it could have been Muslim or Hindu or whatever) was inevitable.

  • Pete

    fws @9

    Good point, which is why I included the “symptom, not cause” comment. I think your Fall of Rome analogy bolsters my point – Roman society had gone down the slippery slope to the point that extinction of the status quo and replacement with a better civil system (happened to be Christian, but you’re right – it could have been Muslim or Hindu or whatever) was inevitable.

  • helen

    And the decline and fall of the Roman Empire happened at precisely the same time that it was in the process of moving from those evils to becoming quite thouroughly christianized. —fws

    The Roman Empire was acquiring a “Christian” veneer because its top leaders accepted it, possibly as a political move.
    At the same time, Rome was bringing back so many slaves from its conquests that free men were out of work and on the dole. That is the original meaning of “bread and circuses’ as I was taught it.

    In this generation, our oligarchs leave the slaves where they are, conveniently out of sight so nobody will protest, but they bring the products of their work home to undercut the wages of the free man, or eliminate his job by “outsourcing” to the “slave” country. They ignore the law and import free but uneducated labor, so that our homes and other buildings, whether expensive or obviously shoddy, are built in the same ticky-tacky way, without enough nails in the studs to survive a bad windstorm.

    But we also have a veneer of Christianity!
    We pretend to be exporting democracy while we stifle it at home.

    TSA should be eliminated. It’s a sham. Assaulting old ladies and four year old children in the name of safety is an abomination. How many “security risks” have they found!? [They might better apply some "security" to the 'back doors' where all sorts of people go in and out without question.]

  • helen

    And the decline and fall of the Roman Empire happened at precisely the same time that it was in the process of moving from those evils to becoming quite thouroughly christianized. —fws

    The Roman Empire was acquiring a “Christian” veneer because its top leaders accepted it, possibly as a political move.
    At the same time, Rome was bringing back so many slaves from its conquests that free men were out of work and on the dole. That is the original meaning of “bread and circuses’ as I was taught it.

    In this generation, our oligarchs leave the slaves where they are, conveniently out of sight so nobody will protest, but they bring the products of their work home to undercut the wages of the free man, or eliminate his job by “outsourcing” to the “slave” country. They ignore the law and import free but uneducated labor, so that our homes and other buildings, whether expensive or obviously shoddy, are built in the same ticky-tacky way, without enough nails in the studs to survive a bad windstorm.

    But we also have a veneer of Christianity!
    We pretend to be exporting democracy while we stifle it at home.

    TSA should be eliminated. It’s a sham. Assaulting old ladies and four year old children in the name of safety is an abomination. How many “security risks” have they found!? [They might better apply some "security" to the 'back doors' where all sorts of people go in and out without question.]

  • Dan Kempin

    Fws, #10,

    Smiley face!

  • Dan Kempin

    Fws, #10,

    Smiley face!

  • Michael B.

    We’re quickly approaching the end-times as we live in a fallen culture that has abandoned Christ and does what is right in its own eyes. We’re seeing the rise of gays, feminists, and abortionists. Lord Jesus have mercy.

    Or something like that. I’m trying to learn how to speak Evangelical Christianese.

    Being serious for a second, I hardly thing these thinks are hardly the biggest scandals of our time. A secret serviceman visiting a prostitute? What about the thousands who will die of starvation today when there is ample worldwide food. That to me seems like a much bigger scandal.

  • Michael B.

    We’re quickly approaching the end-times as we live in a fallen culture that has abandoned Christ and does what is right in its own eyes. We’re seeing the rise of gays, feminists, and abortionists. Lord Jesus have mercy.

    Or something like that. I’m trying to learn how to speak Evangelical Christianese.

    Being serious for a second, I hardly thing these thinks are hardly the biggest scandals of our time. A secret serviceman visiting a prostitute? What about the thousands who will die of starvation today when there is ample worldwide food. That to me seems like a much bigger scandal.

  • Truth Unites… and Divides

    fws: “we could rather immediately eliminate most of these social problems by all embracing islam or mormonism or any number of other religions.

    Those who think christianizing everyone is the end of all this needs to only look at when virtually everyone was baptized around the time of the reformation. ahem.”

    Baptism is gospel. Per your statement, then around the time of the Reformation everyone had the gospel.

  • Truth Unites… and Divides

    fws: “we could rather immediately eliminate most of these social problems by all embracing islam or mormonism or any number of other religions.

    Those who think christianizing everyone is the end of all this needs to only look at when virtually everyone was baptized around the time of the reformation. ahem.”

    Baptism is gospel. Per your statement, then around the time of the Reformation everyone had the gospel.

  • fws

    tud @ 17

    Baptism is gospel. Per your statement, then around the time of the Reformation everyone “had the gospel.”

    In the same sense as today, pretty much everyone in the usa “has the gospel” in the sense that they have heard it at least once and know what it is. right? So that means what exactly tud?

  • fws

    tud @ 17

    Baptism is gospel. Per your statement, then around the time of the Reformation everyone “had the gospel.”

    In the same sense as today, pretty much everyone in the usa “has the gospel” in the sense that they have heard it at least once and know what it is. right? So that means what exactly tud?

  • Truth Unites… and Divides

    Lutheran Culture Warrior Dr. Gene Veith: “Could it be cultural breakdown, a state in which there is no longer a sense of community that exerts any kind of social pressure to do what is right?

    What do you think? And is there any way to restore a sense of civilization and character?”

    The solution to cultural breakdown is the gospel. Baptism is the gospel. Baptize everyone, including infants. Catechise as confessional Lutherans.

  • Truth Unites… and Divides

    Lutheran Culture Warrior Dr. Gene Veith: “Could it be cultural breakdown, a state in which there is no longer a sense of community that exerts any kind of social pressure to do what is right?

    What do you think? And is there any way to restore a sense of civilization and character?”

    The solution to cultural breakdown is the gospel. Baptism is the gospel. Baptize everyone, including infants. Catechise as confessional Lutherans.

  • Truth Unites… and Divides

    “The solution to cultural breakdown is the gospel. Baptism is the gospel. Baptize everyone, including infants. Catechise as confessional Lutherans.”

    Q: Why catechise as Confessional Lutherans?

    A: Aren’t Confessional Lutherans “a community that exerts any kind of social pressure to do what is right?”

  • Truth Unites… and Divides

    “The solution to cultural breakdown is the gospel. Baptism is the gospel. Baptize everyone, including infants. Catechise as confessional Lutherans.”

    Q: Why catechise as Confessional Lutherans?

    A: Aren’t Confessional Lutherans “a community that exerts any kind of social pressure to do what is right?”

  • fws

    tud @ 19

    what you suggest is unlutheran because it is contrary to what the Lutheran Confessions teach. try reading those….

  • fws

    tud @ 19

    what you suggest is unlutheran because it is contrary to what the Lutheran Confessions teach. try reading those….

  • Truth Unites… and Divides

    “The solution to cultural breakdown is the gospel. Baptism is the gospel. Baptize everyone, including infants. Catechise as confessional Lutherans.”

    FWS, what part of the above is contrary to what the Lutheran Confessions teach? And why?

  • Truth Unites… and Divides

    “The solution to cultural breakdown is the gospel. Baptism is the gospel. Baptize everyone, including infants. Catechise as confessional Lutherans.”

    FWS, what part of the above is contrary to what the Lutheran Confessions teach? And why?

  • http://www.biblegateway.com/versions/Contemporary-English-Version-CEV-Bible/ sg

    “What about the thousands who will die of starvation today when there is ample worldwide food. That to me seems like a much bigger scandal.”

    Here’s the deal. When you give starving people food, you get more starving people. I don’t know how old you are, but about 20-25 years ago there was a big famine in Ethiopia. There were about 40 million living there in 1985. The world gave them food. Now there are 83 million not much better off than before.

    http://www.usatoday.com/printedition/news/20080818/1a_cover18.art.htm

    So, these problems are not so simple.

  • http://www.biblegateway.com/versions/Contemporary-English-Version-CEV-Bible/ sg

    “What about the thousands who will die of starvation today when there is ample worldwide food. That to me seems like a much bigger scandal.”

    Here’s the deal. When you give starving people food, you get more starving people. I don’t know how old you are, but about 20-25 years ago there was a big famine in Ethiopia. There were about 40 million living there in 1985. The world gave them food. Now there are 83 million not much better off than before.

    http://www.usatoday.com/printedition/news/20080818/1a_cover18.art.htm

    So, these problems are not so simple.

  • Stan

    After reading the above, I believe we have a lot of sick minded
    people in this country.

  • Stan

    After reading the above, I believe we have a lot of sick minded
    people in this country.

  • Jon

    A more troubling sign of the American crisis is the GOP budget, which Mitt Romney declared as “marvelous.” But not so the US Catholic bishops, who called it “immoral.” Indeed, 90 faculty members at Catholic-affiliated Georgetown wrote a letter lambasting Rep. Paul Ryan for “continuing misuse of Catholic teaching to defend a budget plan that decimates food programs for struggling families,” among other things. “In short, your budget appears to reflect the values of your favorite philosopher, Ayn Rand, rather than the gospel of Jesus Christ,” they wrote.

  • Jon

    A more troubling sign of the American crisis is the GOP budget, which Mitt Romney declared as “marvelous.” But not so the US Catholic bishops, who called it “immoral.” Indeed, 90 faculty members at Catholic-affiliated Georgetown wrote a letter lambasting Rep. Paul Ryan for “continuing misuse of Catholic teaching to defend a budget plan that decimates food programs for struggling families,” among other things. “In short, your budget appears to reflect the values of your favorite philosopher, Ayn Rand, rather than the gospel of Jesus Christ,” they wrote.

  • Tom Hering

    Once again, TUAD misrepresents Lutheran teaching, and demands we defend his misrepresentation. What a weiner.

  • Tom Hering

    Once again, TUAD misrepresents Lutheran teaching, and demands we defend his misrepresentation. What a weiner.

  • Truth Unites… and Divides

    “Baptism is gospel. Baptize everyone, including infants. Catechise as confessional Lutherans.”

    What part of the above misrepresents Lutheran teaching, and why?

  • Truth Unites… and Divides

    “Baptism is gospel. Baptize everyone, including infants. Catechise as confessional Lutherans.”

    What part of the above misrepresents Lutheran teaching, and why?

  • Tom Hering

    Baptize everyone, including infants.

    We don’t baptize everyone. We baptize those who come to the water with faith in the Word associated with the water – including those whose faith is that of a little child.

    Happy now? We’re off on your favorite topic of regeneration.

    Somebody kick me.

  • Tom Hering

    Baptize everyone, including infants.

    We don’t baptize everyone. We baptize those who come to the water with faith in the Word associated with the water – including those whose faith is that of a little child.

    Happy now? We’re off on your favorite topic of regeneration.

    Somebody kick me.

  • Pete

    Kick administerd.

  • Pete

    Kick administerd.

  • Patrick Kyle

    “Could it be cultural breakdown, a state in which there is no longer a sense of community that exerts any kind of social pressure to do what is right?”

    Yes.

    I also think that we find ourselves culturally in a similar position to that of the Federal Reserve Bank. Our present course is is unsustainable, but to abandon it would be catastrophic. I have taken a long sabbatical from TV, Radio and newspapers. Recently I ‘returned’ from my sabbatical and I find the MSM even more laughable and insipid than they were when I began ignoring them. A populace that drinks from those poison wells for very long is doomed.

  • Patrick Kyle

    “Could it be cultural breakdown, a state in which there is no longer a sense of community that exerts any kind of social pressure to do what is right?”

    Yes.

    I also think that we find ourselves culturally in a similar position to that of the Federal Reserve Bank. Our present course is is unsustainable, but to abandon it would be catastrophic. I have taken a long sabbatical from TV, Radio and newspapers. Recently I ‘returned’ from my sabbatical and I find the MSM even more laughable and insipid than they were when I began ignoring them. A populace that drinks from those poison wells for very long is doomed.

  • Patrick Kyle

    TUAD,

    How do you know that ‘truth unites…and divides’ since you engage in so little of it? Any’ division’ you come across is caused by your moronic ignorance rather than any tenuous relationship you have with the truth.

  • Patrick Kyle

    TUAD,

    How do you know that ‘truth unites…and divides’ since you engage in so little of it? Any’ division’ you come across is caused by your moronic ignorance rather than any tenuous relationship you have with the truth.

  • SKPeterson

    Jon @ 25 – They were faculty from where? Oh, Georgetown you say? You mean the university that is emblematic of what catholicculture.org calls “the decay of Catholic life in this country since the turbulent 1960s, exemplifying the dramatic secularization of Catholic colleges and universities.” You mean the Georgetown that is so orthodox in its Catholicity that it was one of the inspirations for reviewing the chartering documents of all Catholic institutions of higher learning because of the gross errors being perpetuated there? You mean the same Georgetown University that employs “Ed Ingebretsen, English professor and director of Georgetown’s American Studies Program, a former Jesuit who was ‘married’ in Massachusetts to his homosexual partner?” That Georgetown? You mean the Georgetown University that has regularly hired pro-abortion advocates in direct contravention of established Roman doctrine? You mean the same Georgetown University that had some 70 faculty write a letter of protest regarding a speech by a Cardinal that “defended the family against contraception, abortion, infanticide, euthanasia, pornography, fornication, adultery, homosexuality, ‘irregular unions,’ and divorce.” Well, what better group of people to define “Catholic social teaching” could there possibly be? They obviously know it by advocating for whatever is directly opposed to it. Apparently, they are guided in this by following the teachings of St. Che.

    If you put Paul Ryan’s knowledge of subsidiarity on a scale with the knowledge of the 90 faculty members at Georgetown, Ryan would still outweigh them.

  • SKPeterson

    Jon @ 25 – They were faculty from where? Oh, Georgetown you say? You mean the university that is emblematic of what catholicculture.org calls “the decay of Catholic life in this country since the turbulent 1960s, exemplifying the dramatic secularization of Catholic colleges and universities.” You mean the Georgetown that is so orthodox in its Catholicity that it was one of the inspirations for reviewing the chartering documents of all Catholic institutions of higher learning because of the gross errors being perpetuated there? You mean the same Georgetown University that employs “Ed Ingebretsen, English professor and director of Georgetown’s American Studies Program, a former Jesuit who was ‘married’ in Massachusetts to his homosexual partner?” That Georgetown? You mean the Georgetown University that has regularly hired pro-abortion advocates in direct contravention of established Roman doctrine? You mean the same Georgetown University that had some 70 faculty write a letter of protest regarding a speech by a Cardinal that “defended the family against contraception, abortion, infanticide, euthanasia, pornography, fornication, adultery, homosexuality, ‘irregular unions,’ and divorce.” Well, what better group of people to define “Catholic social teaching” could there possibly be? They obviously know it by advocating for whatever is directly opposed to it. Apparently, they are guided in this by following the teachings of St. Che.

    If you put Paul Ryan’s knowledge of subsidiarity on a scale with the knowledge of the 90 faculty members at Georgetown, Ryan would still outweigh them.

  • Jon

    SK @32
    You missed the point about the Georgetown letter, which contrasted the Church’s social teachings with those of Ayn Rand. Ryan – and hence the GOP – prefer Rand’s. So be it. But let the GOP be honest about it.

    Now, how ’bout those bishops? Surely, they know a thing or two about Catholic social teaching.

  • Jon

    SK @32
    You missed the point about the Georgetown letter, which contrasted the Church’s social teachings with those of Ayn Rand. Ryan – and hence the GOP – prefer Rand’s. So be it. But let the GOP be honest about it.

    Now, how ’bout those bishops? Surely, they know a thing or two about Catholic social teaching.

  • Tom Hering

    Admiring Ayn Rand is not admirable, but I really doubt it’s characteristic of the GOP.

  • Tom Hering

    Admiring Ayn Rand is not admirable, but I really doubt it’s characteristic of the GOP.

  • Jon

    “Rand more than anyone else did a fantastic job of explaining the morality of capitalism, the morality of individualism… It’s that kind of thinking, that kind of writing that is sorely needed right now.” — Author of the GOP Budget, Rep. Paul Ryan (R-WI).

  • Jon

    “Rand more than anyone else did a fantastic job of explaining the morality of capitalism, the morality of individualism… It’s that kind of thinking, that kind of writing that is sorely needed right now.” — Author of the GOP Budget, Rep. Paul Ryan (R-WI).

  • Tom Hering

    Being the author of the GOP budget doesn’t make you the philosophical representative of all the GOP’s members.

  • Tom Hering

    Being the author of the GOP budget doesn’t make you the philosophical representative of all the GOP’s members.

  • Jon

    @36
    He is for all who vote for the Ryan budget, at least. Budgets are moral documents, and Ryan crafted this one to represent his Randian philosophy. In Congress, budgets originate in the House, which the GOP controls. The Ryan budget is the GOP budget and Republicans will be expected to support it.

  • Jon

    @36
    He is for all who vote for the Ryan budget, at least. Budgets are moral documents, and Ryan crafted this one to represent his Randian philosophy. In Congress, budgets originate in the House, which the GOP controls. The Ryan budget is the GOP budget and Republicans will be expected to support it.

  • Jacob

    I have been thinking about the question on how to restore a sense of civilization. I was thinking about how, 100 years ago in some parts of the country, it was considered acceptable or even encouraged for white mobs to lynch black people. Now I can’t think of anything much more anti-civilization than a mob running around killing people. Oh wait, I can think of something even worse – killer mobs doing their evil work with the tacit approval of local law enforcement. Now most people did not engage in mob violence but it was generally held in some circles that such behavior was “the natural order of things.”

    We have had a moral improvement in that such violence is no longer supported anywhere. So what changed? How much of this improvement had to do with people becoming convicted that such behavior was sinful? How much had to do with the fact that the Federal Government cracked down on such violence? And I am not picking on the South – the Klan was powerful in some Northern and Western states, too. But we have had a civilizational improvement in that most whites today would find the Klan and the violence they did unacceptable, while at one time the Klan was to some extent seen as respectable. So what can we learn from the moral improvement that did occur?

  • Jacob

    I have been thinking about the question on how to restore a sense of civilization. I was thinking about how, 100 years ago in some parts of the country, it was considered acceptable or even encouraged for white mobs to lynch black people. Now I can’t think of anything much more anti-civilization than a mob running around killing people. Oh wait, I can think of something even worse – killer mobs doing their evil work with the tacit approval of local law enforcement. Now most people did not engage in mob violence but it was generally held in some circles that such behavior was “the natural order of things.”

    We have had a moral improvement in that such violence is no longer supported anywhere. So what changed? How much of this improvement had to do with people becoming convicted that such behavior was sinful? How much had to do with the fact that the Federal Government cracked down on such violence? And I am not picking on the South – the Klan was powerful in some Northern and Western states, too. But we have had a civilizational improvement in that most whites today would find the Klan and the violence they did unacceptable, while at one time the Klan was to some extent seen as respectable. So what can we learn from the moral improvement that did occur?

  • SKPeterson

    I would disagree with Ryan about Rand, but I’m pretty sure that the professors at Georgetown don’t know Rand either. She’s not the best defender of the morality of capitalism or the morality of individualism.

    As Ludwig von Mises said of her (and paraphrase somewhat accurately from memory): “She’s just a spoiled, little Jewish girl who wants everything her way.” Something like that anyway.

    There are actually several Catholic writers that Ryan could have referred to to provide a better moral defense for capitalism:

    San Bernardino of Siena, Luis de Molina, Domingo de Soto, Juan de Mariana, and even that rabid anti-Lutheran scourge Cajetan. If he wanted more modern exemplars Lord Acton and Franz Brentano would work.

  • SKPeterson

    I would disagree with Ryan about Rand, but I’m pretty sure that the professors at Georgetown don’t know Rand either. She’s not the best defender of the morality of capitalism or the morality of individualism.

    As Ludwig von Mises said of her (and paraphrase somewhat accurately from memory): “She’s just a spoiled, little Jewish girl who wants everything her way.” Something like that anyway.

    There are actually several Catholic writers that Ryan could have referred to to provide a better moral defense for capitalism:

    San Bernardino of Siena, Luis de Molina, Domingo de Soto, Juan de Mariana, and even that rabid anti-Lutheran scourge Cajetan. If he wanted more modern exemplars Lord Acton and Franz Brentano would work.

  • Rose

    The moral lapses mentioned in the post were mainly federal government officials (GSA,TSA…). Corrupt, officious petty officials are not being regulated and disciplined.
    Today there’s a report of the president’s re-election committee posting names of contributors to his opponent:
    http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052702304723304577368280604524916.html. People fear the power of the federal government, rather than the reverse.
    In the community, Booklover is right:
    “A positive change must start with the men. ”
    Young men need to see their fathers handling tense or confrontational situations and stepping in to protect the weak and being respected for it.
    I wonder if Trayvon Martin missed that example, as his father was in a different city living with an unrelated woman.

  • Rose

    The moral lapses mentioned in the post were mainly federal government officials (GSA,TSA…). Corrupt, officious petty officials are not being regulated and disciplined.
    Today there’s a report of the president’s re-election committee posting names of contributors to his opponent:
    http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052702304723304577368280604524916.html. People fear the power of the federal government, rather than the reverse.
    In the community, Booklover is right:
    “A positive change must start with the men. ”
    Young men need to see their fathers handling tense or confrontational situations and stepping in to protect the weak and being respected for it.
    I wonder if Trayvon Martin missed that example, as his father was in a different city living with an unrelated woman.

  • http://www.toddstadler.com/ tODD

    Rose (@40), I’m pretty certain that the late Trayvon Martin was not the one in his scenario who needed to learn about how to handle tense or confrontational situations and protect the weak. Criminy!

  • http://www.toddstadler.com/ tODD

    Rose (@40), I’m pretty certain that the late Trayvon Martin was not the one in his scenario who needed to learn about how to handle tense or confrontational situations and protect the weak. Criminy!

  • http://www.biblegateway.com/versions/Contemporary-English-Version-CEV-Bible/ sg

    “I was thinking about how, 100 years ago in some parts of the country, it was considered acceptable or even encouraged for white mobs to lynch black people.”

    Yeah, well, whites were lynched, too. In fact, in some states, 100% of those lynched were white.

    So, put away the broad brush and learn something about it.

  • http://www.biblegateway.com/versions/Contemporary-English-Version-CEV-Bible/ sg

    “I was thinking about how, 100 years ago in some parts of the country, it was considered acceptable or even encouraged for white mobs to lynch black people.”

    Yeah, well, whites were lynched, too. In fact, in some states, 100% of those lynched were white.

    So, put away the broad brush and learn something about it.

  • http://www.biblegateway.com/versions/Contemporary-English-Version-CEV-Bible/ sg

    “We have had a moral improvement in that such violence is no longer supported anywhere.”

    Not true. Plenty of people support lawlessness and violence.

    See flash mobs

  • http://www.biblegateway.com/versions/Contemporary-English-Version-CEV-Bible/ sg

    “We have had a moral improvement in that such violence is no longer supported anywhere.”

    Not true. Plenty of people support lawlessness and violence.

    See flash mobs

  • Grace

    sg

    YOU WROTE:

    “Yeah, well, whites were lynched, too. In fact, in some states, 100% of those lynched were white.”

    Total — white – 1,297 – black 3,446 TOTAL 4,743

    The TOTAL of those lynched were black. That means 2,149 more blacks were lynched then whites. One also needs to understand there were far more blacks than whites. The shame of what transpired in this country, and to a far bigger extent in the south is something none of us should forget, or belittle.

    We were not born yet, but we certainly can respect the pain of those whos families were deeply affected by their loss.

    Blacks are the middle number of each state.

    Lynchings: By State and Race, 1882-1968 *

    ——————————————————————————–

    State White Black Total

    ——————————————————————————–

    Alabama 48 299 347
    Arizona 31 0 31
    Arkansas 58 226 284
    California 41 2 43
    Colorado 65 3 68
    Delaware 0 1 1
    Florida 25 257 282
    Georgia 39 492 531
    Idaho 20 0 20
    Illinois 15 19 34
    Indiana 33 14 47
    Iowa 17 2 19
    Kansas 35 19 54
    Kentucky 63 142 205
    Louisiana 56 335 391
    Maine 1 0 1
    Maryland 2 27 29
    Michigan 7 1 8
    Minnesota 5 4 9
    Mississippi 42 539 581
    Missouri 53 69 122
    Montana 82 2 84
    Nebraska 52 5 57
    Nevada 6 0 6
    New Jersey 1 1 2
    New Mexico 33 3 36
    New York 1 1 2
    North Carolina 15 86 101
    North Dakota 13 3 16
    Ohio 10 16 26
    Oklahoma 82 40 122
    Oregon 20 1 21
    Pennsylvania 2 6 8
    South Carolina 4 156 160
    South Dakota 27 0 27
    Tennessee 47 204 251
    Texas 141 352 493
    Utah 6 2 8
    Vermont 1 0 1
    Virginia 17 83 100
    Washington 25 1 26
    West Virginia 20 28 48
    Wisconsin 6 0 6
    Wyoming 30 5 35

    Total – 1,297 – 3,446 -4,743
    *Statistics provided by the Archives at Tuskegee Institute.

    http://law2.umkc.edu/faculty/projects/ftrials/shipp/lynchingsstate.html

  • Grace

    sg

    YOU WROTE:

    “Yeah, well, whites were lynched, too. In fact, in some states, 100% of those lynched were white.”

    Total — white – 1,297 – black 3,446 TOTAL 4,743

    The TOTAL of those lynched were black. That means 2,149 more blacks were lynched then whites. One also needs to understand there were far more blacks than whites. The shame of what transpired in this country, and to a far bigger extent in the south is something none of us should forget, or belittle.

    We were not born yet, but we certainly can respect the pain of those whos families were deeply affected by their loss.

    Blacks are the middle number of each state.

    Lynchings: By State and Race, 1882-1968 *

    ——————————————————————————–

    State White Black Total

    ——————————————————————————–

    Alabama 48 299 347
    Arizona 31 0 31
    Arkansas 58 226 284
    California 41 2 43
    Colorado 65 3 68
    Delaware 0 1 1
    Florida 25 257 282
    Georgia 39 492 531
    Idaho 20 0 20
    Illinois 15 19 34
    Indiana 33 14 47
    Iowa 17 2 19
    Kansas 35 19 54
    Kentucky 63 142 205
    Louisiana 56 335 391
    Maine 1 0 1
    Maryland 2 27 29
    Michigan 7 1 8
    Minnesota 5 4 9
    Mississippi 42 539 581
    Missouri 53 69 122
    Montana 82 2 84
    Nebraska 52 5 57
    Nevada 6 0 6
    New Jersey 1 1 2
    New Mexico 33 3 36
    New York 1 1 2
    North Carolina 15 86 101
    North Dakota 13 3 16
    Ohio 10 16 26
    Oklahoma 82 40 122
    Oregon 20 1 21
    Pennsylvania 2 6 8
    South Carolina 4 156 160
    South Dakota 27 0 27
    Tennessee 47 204 251
    Texas 141 352 493
    Utah 6 2 8
    Vermont 1 0 1
    Virginia 17 83 100
    Washington 25 1 26
    West Virginia 20 28 48
    Wisconsin 6 0 6
    Wyoming 30 5 35

    Total – 1,297 – 3,446 -4,743
    *Statistics provided by the Archives at Tuskegee Institute.

    http://law2.umkc.edu/faculty/projects/ftrials/shipp/lynchingsstate.html

  • Rose

    tODD,
    Martin would not have been in Sanford suspended from school if he respected authority at his school in Miami.
    Martin was 4″taller than Zimmerman and the same weight.
    It’s likely Martin threw a punch instead of walking away.
    With respect to protecting the weak, that was in reference to the Baltimore beating.

  • Rose

    tODD,
    Martin would not have been in Sanford suspended from school if he respected authority at his school in Miami.
    Martin was 4″taller than Zimmerman and the same weight.
    It’s likely Martin threw a punch instead of walking away.
    With respect to protecting the weak, that was in reference to the Baltimore beating.

  • Grace

    sg # 23

    “Here’s the deal. When you give starving people food, you get more starving people. I don’t know how old you are, but about 20-25 years ago there was a big famine in Ethiopia. There were about 40 million living there in 1985. The world gave them food. Now there are 83 million not much better off than before.

    Many of those poor people lived, and so did their little ones. I cannot imagine the heartache of watching a child die of starvation, or my family and those around me.

    What do you suggest, let them starve to death, and then there would be many less people? Is that your point? – if not what is it?

  • Grace

    sg # 23

    “Here’s the deal. When you give starving people food, you get more starving people. I don’t know how old you are, but about 20-25 years ago there was a big famine in Ethiopia. There were about 40 million living there in 1985. The world gave them food. Now there are 83 million not much better off than before.

    Many of those poor people lived, and so did their little ones. I cannot imagine the heartache of watching a child die of starvation, or my family and those around me.

    What do you suggest, let them starve to death, and then there would be many less people? Is that your point? – if not what is it?

  • http://www.biblegateway.com/versions/Contemporary-English-Version-CEV-Bible/ sg

    @46

    What do you suggest, let them starve to death, and then there would be many less people? Is that your point? – if not what is it?

    I stated my point:
    -So, these problems are not so simple.

    Just feeding the starving renders more starving people. So obviously feeding starving people doesn’t fix the secular trend. It exacerbates it. I don’t have the solution and perhaps no one does. Jesus told us the poor would always be with us.

  • http://www.biblegateway.com/versions/Contemporary-English-Version-CEV-Bible/ sg

    @46

    What do you suggest, let them starve to death, and then there would be many less people? Is that your point? – if not what is it?

    I stated my point:
    -So, these problems are not so simple.

    Just feeding the starving renders more starving people. So obviously feeding starving people doesn’t fix the secular trend. It exacerbates it. I don’t have the solution and perhaps no one does. Jesus told us the poor would always be with us.

  • http://www.biblegateway.com/versions/Contemporary-English-Version-CEV-Bible/ sg

    “That means 2,149 more blacks were lynched then whites.”

    Yes, that is right.

    The faulty assumption is that it was primarily a response to race.
    It wasn’t. It was a response to crime.

    Notice that in every state that had at least one lynching, there were at least some whites who were lynched. However, plenty of states lynched no blacks, even though they lynched people. So, basically it was a vigilante response to crime, not race.

    Blacks have a higher crime rate, so that looks like why they got lynched more in those states where they lived.

    But lynching itself was not a response to race.

    It wasn’t that they thought it was okay to violate the due process rights of blacks only.
    They thought they could violate due process rights, period.

  • http://www.biblegateway.com/versions/Contemporary-English-Version-CEV-Bible/ sg

    “That means 2,149 more blacks were lynched then whites.”

    Yes, that is right.

    The faulty assumption is that it was primarily a response to race.
    It wasn’t. It was a response to crime.

    Notice that in every state that had at least one lynching, there were at least some whites who were lynched. However, plenty of states lynched no blacks, even though they lynched people. So, basically it was a vigilante response to crime, not race.

    Blacks have a higher crime rate, so that looks like why they got lynched more in those states where they lived.

    But lynching itself was not a response to race.

    It wasn’t that they thought it was okay to violate the due process rights of blacks only.
    They thought they could violate due process rights, period.

  • Grace

    sg @ 47

    ” Jesus told us the poor would always be with us.”

    My suggest to you is, read that passage of Scripture over a time or two. Jesus was not telling anyone not to help the poor. The meaning behind selling what was given to HIM, was very different – you will see this as you read the passage.

    Does that mean we should ignore those who are starving, like those in areas so desolate, they cannot plant crops, no rain to make them grow.

    41 Then shall he say also unto them on the left hand, Depart from me, ye cursed, into everlasting fire, prepared for the devil and his angels:

    42 For I was an hungred, and ye gave me no meat: I was thirsty, and ye gave me no drink:

    43 I was a stranger, and ye took me not in: naked, and ye clothed me not: sick, and in prison, and ye visited me not.

    44 Then shall they also answer him, saying, Lord, when saw we thee an hungred, or athirst, or a stranger, or naked, or sick, or in prison, and did not minister unto thee?

    45 Then shall he answer them, saying, Verily I say unto you, Inasmuch as ye did it not to one of the least of these, ye did it not to me.

    46 And these shall go away into everlasting punishment: but the righteous into life eternal. Matthew 25

  • Grace

    sg @ 47

    ” Jesus told us the poor would always be with us.”

    My suggest to you is, read that passage of Scripture over a time or two. Jesus was not telling anyone not to help the poor. The meaning behind selling what was given to HIM, was very different – you will see this as you read the passage.

    Does that mean we should ignore those who are starving, like those in areas so desolate, they cannot plant crops, no rain to make them grow.

    41 Then shall he say also unto them on the left hand, Depart from me, ye cursed, into everlasting fire, prepared for the devil and his angels:

    42 For I was an hungred, and ye gave me no meat: I was thirsty, and ye gave me no drink:

    43 I was a stranger, and ye took me not in: naked, and ye clothed me not: sick, and in prison, and ye visited me not.

    44 Then shall they also answer him, saying, Lord, when saw we thee an hungred, or athirst, or a stranger, or naked, or sick, or in prison, and did not minister unto thee?

    45 Then shall he answer them, saying, Verily I say unto you, Inasmuch as ye did it not to one of the least of these, ye did it not to me.

    46 And these shall go away into everlasting punishment: but the righteous into life eternal. Matthew 25

  • Grace

    sg @ 48

    Often times it was because one of them ran away. The slave owners beat the slaves, the white owners often raped the young girls and the older ones. Many children were born from these sexual activities, there were some who looked black, others very, very light.

    I don’t know how much you have studied about the blacks and their poverty, being taken by force against their will, from Africa, brought to the U.S., Caribbean Islands, and South America – to work the plantations, take care of the white families homes and children. What a terrible life.

  • Grace

    sg @ 48

    Often times it was because one of them ran away. The slave owners beat the slaves, the white owners often raped the young girls and the older ones. Many children were born from these sexual activities, there were some who looked black, others very, very light.

    I don’t know how much you have studied about the blacks and their poverty, being taken by force against their will, from Africa, brought to the U.S., Caribbean Islands, and South America – to work the plantations, take care of the white families homes and children. What a terrible life.

  • http://www.biblegateway.com/versions/Contemporary-English-Version-CEV-Bible/ sg

    “Jesus was not telling anyone not to help the poor.”

    No kidding.

    I am not saying it either. I was just answering the smug self righteous insinuation that somehow American politicians could simply solve the hunger problem, and that if the world just wanted it enough, it would happen. Well, did the obvious, send food, and it didn’t solve the problem. So, now what? They have the same problem, only bigger. Maybe Michael B has a magic answer for us all.

  • http://www.biblegateway.com/versions/Contemporary-English-Version-CEV-Bible/ sg

    “Jesus was not telling anyone not to help the poor.”

    No kidding.

    I am not saying it either. I was just answering the smug self righteous insinuation that somehow American politicians could simply solve the hunger problem, and that if the world just wanted it enough, it would happen. Well, did the obvious, send food, and it didn’t solve the problem. So, now what? They have the same problem, only bigger. Maybe Michael B has a magic answer for us all.

  • Grace

    sg,

    There will never be a FINAL ANSWER to any of mans problems, until the LORD returns. Because the numbers of starving people increases, doesn’t equate to our not giving them food.

    Churches send food all the time – Franklin Graham of Samaritan Purse, sends huge cargo planes with food and tents to many stricken areas.

  • Grace

    sg,

    There will never be a FINAL ANSWER to any of mans problems, until the LORD returns. Because the numbers of starving people increases, doesn’t equate to our not giving them food.

    Churches send food all the time – Franklin Graham of Samaritan Purse, sends huge cargo planes with food and tents to many stricken areas.

  • http://www.biblegateway.com/versions/Contemporary-English-Version-CEV-Bible/ sg

    “What a terrible life.”

    Yeah, I agree. It was perpetrated by the few rich slave owners. The elites in the north mostly winked at it cuz they didn’t care. The anti slavery movement was a movement among some Christians. Lots of white northern men fought and died to end it. In particular West Virginia broke off from Virginia to stay with the Union. We all know this.

    It is not about lynching. Lynching is violation of due process. It comes from a community that is enraged over a particular crime. It is not primarily racial, as evidenced by the incidence of lynching in areas with few or no blacks. The disparity among victims appears to be due to the difference in the crime rate of the two groups. That difference continues to this day. Blacks are about 14% of the population but commit about as many murders as whites do. Of course the victims of black murders are generally black, too. So…

  • http://www.biblegateway.com/versions/Contemporary-English-Version-CEV-Bible/ sg

    “What a terrible life.”

    Yeah, I agree. It was perpetrated by the few rich slave owners. The elites in the north mostly winked at it cuz they didn’t care. The anti slavery movement was a movement among some Christians. Lots of white northern men fought and died to end it. In particular West Virginia broke off from Virginia to stay with the Union. We all know this.

    It is not about lynching. Lynching is violation of due process. It comes from a community that is enraged over a particular crime. It is not primarily racial, as evidenced by the incidence of lynching in areas with few or no blacks. The disparity among victims appears to be due to the difference in the crime rate of the two groups. That difference continues to this day. Blacks are about 14% of the population but commit about as many murders as whites do. Of course the victims of black murders are generally black, too. So…

  • http://www.biblegateway.com/versions/Contemporary-English-Version-CEV-Bible/ sg

    There will never be a FINAL ANSWER to any of mans problems, until the LORD returns.

    No kidding.

    Because the numbers of starving people increases, doesn’t equate to our not giving them food.

    Never said it did. That bizarre inference came from you.

  • http://www.biblegateway.com/versions/Contemporary-English-Version-CEV-Bible/ sg

    There will never be a FINAL ANSWER to any of mans problems, until the LORD returns.

    No kidding.

    Because the numbers of starving people increases, doesn’t equate to our not giving them food.

    Never said it did. That bizarre inference came from you.

  • Grace

    sg,

    If you’re looking for a cat fight this evening you are out of luck.

    All this back and forth using the same technique as TUAD is boring.

    Good night!

  • Grace

    sg,

    If you’re looking for a cat fight this evening you are out of luck.

    All this back and forth using the same technique as TUAD is boring.

    Good night!

  • Jacob

    Grace,

    Thanks for the statistics. I thought it would be instructive to examine a moral reform that largely succeeded. Namely, groups like the Ku Klux Klan and their violence were widely accepted at one time. But now social approval of such groups is minimal. I am glad you understand what I was trying to get across. I think it is an interesting question about whether appeals to Christian morality, at a time when most people were professing Christians, had a great effect on making such groups as the Klan unpopular, or was it just that such groups were finally being investigated and punished and they lost their appeal because no one wants to be punished. And shouldn’t we support moral reform as long as we don’t confuse it with salvation? And that there are now people on the far left who favor, say, black violence or Islamist violence just underscores the desirability of and the limits to mere social moralism that tries to improve us.

  • Jacob

    Grace,

    Thanks for the statistics. I thought it would be instructive to examine a moral reform that largely succeeded. Namely, groups like the Ku Klux Klan and their violence were widely accepted at one time. But now social approval of such groups is minimal. I am glad you understand what I was trying to get across. I think it is an interesting question about whether appeals to Christian morality, at a time when most people were professing Christians, had a great effect on making such groups as the Klan unpopular, or was it just that such groups were finally being investigated and punished and they lost their appeal because no one wants to be punished. And shouldn’t we support moral reform as long as we don’t confuse it with salvation? And that there are now people on the far left who favor, say, black violence or Islamist violence just underscores the desirability of and the limits to mere social moralism that tries to improve us.

  • Grace

    An excerpt from Peggy Noonan:

    “Now I’d go a step beyond that. I think more and more people are worried about the American character—who we are and what kind of adults we are raising.”

    Every story that has broken through the past few weeks has been about who we are as a people. And they are all disturbing.

    I have been pondering this subject now for months, it is DISTURBING.

    Moral decay – as time goes on, people turn further and further from God, they seek their own pleasures, and success.

    Media influences all ages, what it flashes on the screen, screams that which most cannot afford – sexual content that stirs the hormones of any age – perverted lifestyles that lead to despair and pain, but most of all the gut wrenching sin that rots within, with real disease to go with it.

    Multiculturalism is a difficult process, it too plays into the “American character” – in fact it’s a big part. The average person accepts all sorts of behavior that never would have been acceptable even 30 years ago.

    As I stated in the beginning, it’s MORAL DECAY, it’s worse than cancer, but there is a cure, and that is Jesus Christ and HIS Gospel. Without Him, this is going to get worse.

  • Grace

    An excerpt from Peggy Noonan:

    “Now I’d go a step beyond that. I think more and more people are worried about the American character—who we are and what kind of adults we are raising.”

    Every story that has broken through the past few weeks has been about who we are as a people. And they are all disturbing.

    I have been pondering this subject now for months, it is DISTURBING.

    Moral decay – as time goes on, people turn further and further from God, they seek their own pleasures, and success.

    Media influences all ages, what it flashes on the screen, screams that which most cannot afford – sexual content that stirs the hormones of any age – perverted lifestyles that lead to despair and pain, but most of all the gut wrenching sin that rots within, with real disease to go with it.

    Multiculturalism is a difficult process, it too plays into the “American character” – in fact it’s a big part. The average person accepts all sorts of behavior that never would have been acceptable even 30 years ago.

    As I stated in the beginning, it’s MORAL DECAY, it’s worse than cancer, but there is a cure, and that is Jesus Christ and HIS Gospel. Without Him, this is going to get worse.

  • Grace

    Jacob 56

    I saw your earlier post. Give me a short break and I’ll try to comment on your thoughts. Very interesting.

  • Grace

    Jacob 56

    I saw your earlier post. Give me a short break and I’ll try to comment on your thoughts. Very interesting.

  • http://www.biblegateway.com/versions/Contemporary-English-Version-CEV-Bible/ sg

    “Namely, groups like the Ku Klux Klan and their violence were widely accepted at one time.”

    Except that isn’t what actually happened. It was very dangerous after the civil war and people organized vigilantes for protection. The rich could just leave all the desolation they had created, but the poor couldn’t. They had to defend themselves. It is not surprising that a vigilante group wasn’t as good as proper and legitimate government, but things were complicated. It is so easy to pass judgement on poor desperate people now that we are all safe in our houses in an orderly society, but if our institutions were suddenly swept away, we probably wouldn’t be so much more virtuous.

  • http://www.biblegateway.com/versions/Contemporary-English-Version-CEV-Bible/ sg

    “Namely, groups like the Ku Klux Klan and their violence were widely accepted at one time.”

    Except that isn’t what actually happened. It was very dangerous after the civil war and people organized vigilantes for protection. The rich could just leave all the desolation they had created, but the poor couldn’t. They had to defend themselves. It is not surprising that a vigilante group wasn’t as good as proper and legitimate government, but things were complicated. It is so easy to pass judgement on poor desperate people now that we are all safe in our houses in an orderly society, but if our institutions were suddenly swept away, we probably wouldn’t be so much more virtuous.

  • Grace

    Jacob @56

    “I thought it would be instructive to examine a moral reform that largely succeeded. Namely, groups like the Ku Klux Klan and their violence were widely accepted at one time. But now social approval of such groups is minimal.”

    The KKK was accepted in most all the South. The KKK was not accepted in the North, West, or most of the East. I don’t know of anyone who supports such groups now, except a radical few.

    “I am glad you understand what I was trying to get across. I think it is an interesting question about whether appeals to Christian morality, at a time when most people were professing Christians, had a great effect on making such groups as the Klan unpopular, or was it just that such groups were finally being investigated and punished and they lost their appeal because no one wants to be punished.

    I don’t believe the KKK was ever popular among real Christian Believers. Half of my family have been in the U.S. since 1790, give or take a few years, they were never in favor of such violence. It isn’t a matter of being punished by legal means – it means that it’s sinful to harm and kill others because of their ethnicity, or place of origin. The blacks were taken by force, kidnapped is a better word. Some were kidnapped by their own people, and then sold to those who would then sell them in the U.S., Brazil and the Caribbean Islands.

    ” And shouldn’t we support moral reform as long as we don’t confuse it with salvation? And that there are now people on the far left who favor, say, black violence or Islamist violence just underscores the desirability of and the limits to mere social moralism that tries to improve us.”

    You’ve brought more than a few issues into the mix by your comment above. Salvation and the Gospel are the foundation of Christian Believers lives, one cannot separate the Gospel in such a way to ignore morality. There are laws that prevent any group, such as the ones you’ve mentioned above, from violence against those who live in the U.S.

  • Grace

    Jacob @56

    “I thought it would be instructive to examine a moral reform that largely succeeded. Namely, groups like the Ku Klux Klan and their violence were widely accepted at one time. But now social approval of such groups is minimal.”

    The KKK was accepted in most all the South. The KKK was not accepted in the North, West, or most of the East. I don’t know of anyone who supports such groups now, except a radical few.

    “I am glad you understand what I was trying to get across. I think it is an interesting question about whether appeals to Christian morality, at a time when most people were professing Christians, had a great effect on making such groups as the Klan unpopular, or was it just that such groups were finally being investigated and punished and they lost their appeal because no one wants to be punished.

    I don’t believe the KKK was ever popular among real Christian Believers. Half of my family have been in the U.S. since 1790, give or take a few years, they were never in favor of such violence. It isn’t a matter of being punished by legal means – it means that it’s sinful to harm and kill others because of their ethnicity, or place of origin. The blacks were taken by force, kidnapped is a better word. Some were kidnapped by their own people, and then sold to those who would then sell them in the U.S., Brazil and the Caribbean Islands.

    ” And shouldn’t we support moral reform as long as we don’t confuse it with salvation? And that there are now people on the far left who favor, say, black violence or Islamist violence just underscores the desirability of and the limits to mere social moralism that tries to improve us.”

    You’ve brought more than a few issues into the mix by your comment above. Salvation and the Gospel are the foundation of Christian Believers lives, one cannot separate the Gospel in such a way to ignore morality. There are laws that prevent any group, such as the ones you’ve mentioned above, from violence against those who live in the U.S.

  • Tom Hering

    Grace, the first KKK was indeed limited to the South. It disappeared in the 1870s. The second KKK, founded in 1915, was popular nationwide (and in Canada) by the 1920s.

  • Tom Hering

    Grace, the first KKK was indeed limited to the South. It disappeared in the 1870s. The second KKK, founded in 1915, was popular nationwide (and in Canada) by the 1920s.

  • Grace

    Tom,

    It began in the south – Georgia – the majority being the Democratic party. It then spread nationwide, but the core was southern.

    Second KKK

    “In 1915, the second Klan was founded in Georgia. Starting in 1921, it adopted a modern business system of recruiting (which paid most of the initiation fee and costume charges to the organizers) and grew rapidly nationwide at a time of prosperity. Reflecting the social tensions of urban industrialization and vastly increased immigration, its membership grew most rapidly in cities, and spread to the Midwest and West out of the South. The second KKK preached “One Hundred Percent Americanism” demanded the purification of politics, calling for strict morality and better enforcement of prohibition. Its official rhetoric focused on the threat of the Catholic Church, using anti-Catholicism and nativism.[ Its appeal was directed exclusively at white Protestants. Some local groups took part in attacks on private houses and carried out other violent activities. The violent episodes were generally in the South.

    The second Klan was a formal fraternal organization, with a national and state structure. At its peak in the mid-1920s, the organization claimed to include about 15% of the nation’s eligible population, approximately 4–5 million men. Internal divisions, criminal behavior by leaders, and external opposition brought about a collapse in membership, which had dropped to about 30,000 by 1930. It finally faded away in the 1940s. Klan organizers also operated in Canada, especially in Saskatchewan in 1926-28, where it attacked immigrants from Eastern Europe.

    ______another excerpt

    Historian Eric Foner observed:

    In effect, the Klan was a military force serving the interests of the Democratic party, the planter class, and all those who desired restoration of white supremacy. Its purposes were political, but political in the broadest sense, for it sought to affect power relations, both public and private, throughout Southern society. It aimed to reverse the interlocking changes sweeping over the South during Reconstruction: to destroy the Republican party’s infrastructure, undermine the Reconstruction state, reestablish control of the black labor force, and restore racial subordination in every aspect of Southern life.”

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ku_Klux_Klan

  • Grace

    Tom,

    It began in the south – Georgia – the majority being the Democratic party. It then spread nationwide, but the core was southern.

    Second KKK

    “In 1915, the second Klan was founded in Georgia. Starting in 1921, it adopted a modern business system of recruiting (which paid most of the initiation fee and costume charges to the organizers) and grew rapidly nationwide at a time of prosperity. Reflecting the social tensions of urban industrialization and vastly increased immigration, its membership grew most rapidly in cities, and spread to the Midwest and West out of the South. The second KKK preached “One Hundred Percent Americanism” demanded the purification of politics, calling for strict morality and better enforcement of prohibition. Its official rhetoric focused on the threat of the Catholic Church, using anti-Catholicism and nativism.[ Its appeal was directed exclusively at white Protestants. Some local groups took part in attacks on private houses and carried out other violent activities. The violent episodes were generally in the South.

    The second Klan was a formal fraternal organization, with a national and state structure. At its peak in the mid-1920s, the organization claimed to include about 15% of the nation’s eligible population, approximately 4–5 million men. Internal divisions, criminal behavior by leaders, and external opposition brought about a collapse in membership, which had dropped to about 30,000 by 1930. It finally faded away in the 1940s. Klan organizers also operated in Canada, especially in Saskatchewan in 1926-28, where it attacked immigrants from Eastern Europe.

    ______another excerpt

    Historian Eric Foner observed:

    In effect, the Klan was a military force serving the interests of the Democratic party, the planter class, and all those who desired restoration of white supremacy. Its purposes were political, but political in the broadest sense, for it sought to affect power relations, both public and private, throughout Southern society. It aimed to reverse the interlocking changes sweeping over the South during Reconstruction: to destroy the Republican party’s infrastructure, undermine the Reconstruction state, reestablish control of the black labor force, and restore racial subordination in every aspect of Southern life.”

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ku_Klux_Klan

  • Grace

    Tom, here is another excerpt from the same LINK I gave above. The history concerning the KKK is very interesting.

    In some states, such as Alabama and California, the KKK worked for political reform. In 1924, the Klan became active in local politics in Anaheim, California. The city had been controlled by an entrenched commercial-civic elite that was mostly German American. The elite gave little support to the prohibition laws—the mayor, for example, had been a saloon keeper. The Klan, led by the minister of the First Christian Church, represented a rising group of politically oriented non-German citizens who had been shut out of influence and who denounced the elite as corrupt, undemocratic and self-serving. Cocoltchos says the Klansmen sought to create a model orderly community. There were about 1200 Klan members in orange County, and Cocoltchos tracked them through local records, comparing them to 300 prominent anti-Klan activists. The economic and occupational profile of the pro and anti-Klan groups shows the two were similar and about equally prosperous. Cocoltchos finds no evidence of status anxiety. The Klansmen were all Protestants, as were most of the antis, but the antis also enlisted many Catholic Germans. The Klansmen had a much higher rate of voting and joining nonpartisan civic groups (such as the Chamber of Commerce) than the others before they joined the Klan, suggesting to Cocoltchos it was a high sense of civic activism that led to joining the KKK in the first place. The Klan easily won the hotly contested local election in Anaheim in April 1924. They systematically fired Catholic city employees and replaced them with Klansmen. The new city council tried to strictly enforce prohibition, and the Klan held large rallies and initiation ceremonies over the summer. The opposition organized, bribed a Klansman for the secret membership list, exposed the Klansmen running in the primaries and defeated most of them. The antis stepped up the campaign in 1925 and succeeded in a hotly contested election in voting to recall the Klansmen who had been elected in April 1924. The Klan in Anaheim quickly collapsed, its newspaper closed after losing a libel suit, and the minister who led the local Klavern moved to Kansas”

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ku_Klux_Klan

    blockquote>

    Have morals changed so much since then?
    Have politics changed?

    If we look back, we can all see how sin destroys, but through Christ and the Gospel, faith in HIM, the law of God is forever before our eyes, it through HIM that we escape through leaning upon HIM.

  • Grace

    Tom, here is another excerpt from the same LINK I gave above. The history concerning the KKK is very interesting.

    In some states, such as Alabama and California, the KKK worked for political reform. In 1924, the Klan became active in local politics in Anaheim, California. The city had been controlled by an entrenched commercial-civic elite that was mostly German American. The elite gave little support to the prohibition laws—the mayor, for example, had been a saloon keeper. The Klan, led by the minister of the First Christian Church, represented a rising group of politically oriented non-German citizens who had been shut out of influence and who denounced the elite as corrupt, undemocratic and self-serving. Cocoltchos says the Klansmen sought to create a model orderly community. There were about 1200 Klan members in orange County, and Cocoltchos tracked them through local records, comparing them to 300 prominent anti-Klan activists. The economic and occupational profile of the pro and anti-Klan groups shows the two were similar and about equally prosperous. Cocoltchos finds no evidence of status anxiety. The Klansmen were all Protestants, as were most of the antis, but the antis also enlisted many Catholic Germans. The Klansmen had a much higher rate of voting and joining nonpartisan civic groups (such as the Chamber of Commerce) than the others before they joined the Klan, suggesting to Cocoltchos it was a high sense of civic activism that led to joining the KKK in the first place. The Klan easily won the hotly contested local election in Anaheim in April 1924. They systematically fired Catholic city employees and replaced them with Klansmen. The new city council tried to strictly enforce prohibition, and the Klan held large rallies and initiation ceremonies over the summer. The opposition organized, bribed a Klansman for the secret membership list, exposed the Klansmen running in the primaries and defeated most of them. The antis stepped up the campaign in 1925 and succeeded in a hotly contested election in voting to recall the Klansmen who had been elected in April 1924. The Klan in Anaheim quickly collapsed, its newspaper closed after losing a libel suit, and the minister who led the local Klavern moved to Kansas”

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ku_Klux_Klan

    blockquote>

    Have morals changed so much since then?
    Have politics changed?

    If we look back, we can all see how sin destroys, but through Christ and the Gospel, faith in HIM, the law of God is forever before our eyes, it through HIM that we escape through leaning upon HIM.

  • Grace

    The article below, along with a short video, is germaine to this discussion as we explore “The actual crisis in America” the title of this thread. This is what we are facing in this country –

    This was a High School, young kids. PLEASE take a few minutes and watch the VIDEO.

    Apr 27, 2012

    By Todd Starnes

    “As many as 100 high school students walked out of a national journalism conference after an anti-bullying speaker began cursing, attacked the Bible and reportedly called those who refused to listen to his rant “pansy assed.”

    The speaker was Dan Savage, founder of the “It Gets Better” project, an anti-bullying campaign that has reached more than 40 million viewers with contributors ranging from President Obama to Hollywood stars. Savage also writes a sex advice column called “Savage Love.”
    Savage, and his husband, were also guests at the White House for President Obama’s 2011 LGBT Pride Month reception. He was also invited to a White House anti-bullying conference.”

    READ THE REST: http://radio.foxnews.com/toddstarnes/top-stories/anti-bullying-speaker-curses-mocks-christian-teens.html

  • Grace

    The article below, along with a short video, is germaine to this discussion as we explore “The actual crisis in America” the title of this thread. This is what we are facing in this country –

    This was a High School, young kids. PLEASE take a few minutes and watch the VIDEO.

    Apr 27, 2012

    By Todd Starnes

    “As many as 100 high school students walked out of a national journalism conference after an anti-bullying speaker began cursing, attacked the Bible and reportedly called those who refused to listen to his rant “pansy assed.”

    The speaker was Dan Savage, founder of the “It Gets Better” project, an anti-bullying campaign that has reached more than 40 million viewers with contributors ranging from President Obama to Hollywood stars. Savage also writes a sex advice column called “Savage Love.”
    Savage, and his husband, were also guests at the White House for President Obama’s 2011 LGBT Pride Month reception. He was also invited to a White House anti-bullying conference.”

    READ THE REST: http://radio.foxnews.com/toddstarnes/top-stories/anti-bullying-speaker-curses-mocks-christian-teens.html