When you tell them you still got to sell them

See if you can spot the subtle difference between these two headlines.

First, there’s this one from Christianity Today:

Bible Publisher Tyndale Files Lawsuit Against HHS Contraceptive Mandate

“Too often, its leaders traffic in flatly untrue statements.”

And then there’s this one from Baptist Press:

Bible publisher Tyndale files suit against abortion mandate

Did you spot the subtle difference?

That’s right, Christianity Today’s headline style is to capitalize all words. The headline style of the Baptist Press, on the other hand calls for them to capitalize only the first word, followed by lying nonsense pretending that contraception and abortion are the same thing.

Yes, this contradicts scientific and medical fact and bears false witness against the HHS while gorging on the delusional, smug self-righteousness that comes from pretending everyone else is a Satanic baby-killer. But hey, that’s what the Baptist Press stylebook requires in a headline.

* * * * * * * * *

The Children of Mary is a group of Catholic nuns in Ohio. They are also liars.

They lie a great deal. They lie ridiculously and extravagantly. I suppose they may be so far gone at this point that they have forgotten the truth entirely — forgotten reality entirely — and that thus, in some sense, they might no longer realize they’re lying. But still, the things they say are falsehoods designed to deceive. There’s a word for that.

There’s a temptation to laugh at their anti-contraception video as merely hilarious or “wacky.” It certainly is hilarious and wacky, but it’s also a lie.

This stew of ignorance, legend, slander and sheer fabrication is not the sort of thing any well-intentioned but innocently ignorant group could come up with. The production and promotion of this video is a deliberate evil deed, the product of malicious intent.

The Children of Mary are not innocent, or nice, or good.

* * * * * * * * *

Good to see: Christianity Today calls out the Liar Tony Perkins for, well, lying:

We have major reservations about FRC’s methods for public engagement. Too often, its leaders traffic in flatly untrue statements.

The old-line mainstream of evangelicalism — like the folks at Christianity Today — needs to realize that it’s reputation and identity have been co-opted by people like Perkins. He works hard to make himself the public face of evangelical Christianity. If CT wants to keep using that word “evangelical,” they’re going to have to reclaim it by taking it away from Perkins and his ilk.

And while we’re on the subject of the spectacularly mendacious religious right, here’s Matt Barber of Liberty Counsel providing “proof” of liberal media bias. “Media report support for Romney dwindling. Media lie,” Barber tweeted, along with a picture of a huge crowd at a Romney rally.

Is the picture Barber provides as “proof” actually of an Obama rally from 2008? Why yes, yes it is.

(Post title comes from this classic Adam Again song.)

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  • aunursa

    Spelling-Grammar-Punctuation Police nitpick comment of the day

    The old-line mainstream of evangelicalism — like the folks at Christianity Today — needs to realize that it’s reputation and identity have been co-opted by people like Perkins.

    With an apostrophe, it’s is a contraction of it is
    Without an apostrophe, its is a possessive pronoun.

  • …the SPLC has disgraced itself in recent years by branding the FRC an
    anti-homosexual “hate group.” Certainly, the SPLC deserves to have its
    falsehoods rebutted.

    Except that the SPLC has firmly documented the hateful  lies and junk science that the FRC has used to demonize LGBT people, earning themselves the SPLC’s hate group designation.  So apparently, CT only has “reservations” about some of the falsehoods that the FRC promotes.  CT is apparently willing to ignore other ones — apparently including those told about LGBT people.

  • AnonymousSam

    I love how their 14 points against birth control include racist dog-whistles. Heck, that might even be a racist foghorn.

    Does anyone really live in the northernmost parts of Canada? I’d like to buy some snowy tundra and rename it to Jesusland; hopefully some of them will voluntarily move out to their own little private colony where they can have unrestrained capitalism, mandatory Christianity and all the other perks of a life completely detached from reality.

  • From the “About” section:

    Fred knows the difference between the possessive “its” and the contraction “it’s,” and he is acutely bothered when others mistakenly confuse the two, yet he himself just kind of instinctively types the apostrophe whether or not it belongs there. Some feel this is his greatest hypocrisy, but those who know him better know better. He’s guilty of much greater hypocrisies.

    It actually bugs me when Fred does it, but I can be forgiving when it’s an acknowledged issue.

  • Topher Lac

    EXACTLY. Glad I wasn’t the only one who noticed that little omission by CT

  • aunursa

    Ahhh … I wasn’t aware that it’s been addressed.

  • Magic_Cracker

    As glad as I am the Fred reads and documents this stuff (so we don’t have to), I find myself at a loss regarding what to do about it. It feels good to call the Children of Mary a bunch of liars, and I’m sure it would feel even better to do so to their faces, but they’re response is bound to be “Nuh-uh! You’re the liar!” What the fuck can be done about people who simply choose to be evil?

  • Magic_Cracker

    Forgive the “they’re” vs. “their” typo. Don’t kill me with sheep.

  • D9000

    The Religious Right is rapidly approaching the point where they will just say anything, anything at all, regardless of reality. Watch out for the first RR spokesthing (for some org that consists of more than one loony) to claim that Obama is literally a demon from Hell, and not human at all. Or that Christianity is written into the constitution as the official state Faith of America, in Jefferson’s handwriting. Or that we have always been at war with Eastasia.

  • aunursa

    I’m not bothered by that error.  My pet peeve is mispelled words.

  • walden

    “rapidly approaching the point”?!
    — Got there years ago.  Remember Jerry Falwell’s mass distribution of a video claiming that President Bill Clinton was a drug dealer who had committed various murders to cover up his drug enterprise….

  • You make sure that everyone — including those who would otherwise be duped into supporting them — knows that they are evil.

    their supporters may choose to continue to support them, either due ot
    the fact that they are equally evil or because they wish to remain
    willfully ignorant (which in the great schemes of things, I’m not sure
    is much of a difference), but at least it’s more clear that this is
    exactly what is happening.

  • Magic_Cracker

    The whole Bill Clinton, Drug Lord thing never made sense to me, narratively speaking. Sure, drug lords kill people (or rather, have people killed) to protect market share and to stay free, but why on earth would a drug lord even run for President in the first place? They already have the money, the power, the women. Why would an avaricious sociopath go through what is the colossal pain in the ass that is running for president when they would stand to lose everything and gain nothing they don’t already have, so what’s his motivation for seeking higher office? The only motivation that remains is that he’s doing it just to do it, evil for evil’s sake, like villain out of an 80s action movie.*
    *The drug lord/governor would be  played by Henry Silva, and after he falls/is thrown into a giant wood chipper, the female lead rushes into the scene, her bosoms heaving breathlessly in her tattered blouse, and asks Arnold “What happened to the governer?” to which Arnold quips, “He had too mulch to do.” Fade out. Credits.

  • bobnelsonfr

    I’ve been following Fred’s RSS feed for a while now… I’m impressed by the quality he maintains.

    I have a question: Why does anyone with an open mind want the label “evangelical”? Why not let the term slide into synonymity with “fundamentalism”? And find another term for people who are Bible-oriented but also open-minded?

  • banancat

    I would actually love to see an abortion coverage mandate. Of course, that still wouldn’t be an abortion mandate, just like there is no contraception mandate.

  • Amaryllis

    This is just to say…

    — thanks to Fred, I am now unable to read or hear about the FRC’s Tony Perkins in any source whatsoever without mentally substituting, “Oh, you mean The Liar Tony Perkins.”

    The Children of Mary is a group of Catholic nuns in Ohio.
    I … don’t think that’s the same Children of Mary I used to know. And I wish I didn’t know this bunch now.

    * retreats, humming “Dublin In the Rare Ould Times” *

  • D9000

    Whoa, Nelly. Never heard of that one. I know our libel laws are way too restrictive, but it does seem that yours might need tightening up a little.

  • My guess would be because, from my experience at least, it’s a
    never-ending merry-go-round.  A lot of these people who are ruining the
    word “evangelical”?  They used to identify as “fundamentalist,” or
    seemed to in my experience.  As the word gained negative connotations,
    people started quit identifying with the word and identified strictly as
    “evangelical” instead.  Including the people who were causing
    the word “fundamentalist” to gather up negative
      As a result, they brought those negative
    connotations to the word “evangelical.”  If people start dropping the
    word “evangelical” and latch onto a new word because of those
    connotations, take a wild guess what will happen next?

    See a
    while back when the SBC seriously talked about changing their name
    because they felt the word “Baptist” had negative connotations for
    another example of how this works.

  •  American libel law has a public figure exemption – you can say virtually *anything* about a public figure, and they have to meet a virtually impossible standard to win a libel or slander suit. The exemption can’t be eliminated – it’s the result of Supreme Court decisions regarding First Amendment rights.

  • Ack! Those nuns! I wonder if cloistered away from the world they’ve been duped by someone else or they know how much crap they are talking… could be one or the other.

    Either way the Catholic Church’s latest Doctor would no doubt be facepalming at them http://www.patheos.com/blogs/philfoxrose/2012/10/hildegard-of-bingen-catholic-saint-and-new-age-hero/ and she’d most definitely be on the side of the good nuns in their argument with the Vatican, she wasn’t afraid to get into arguments with the authorities herself. In fact all four female doctors of the church seem to have been fairly bolshie women.

  • bobnelsonfr


    Maybe a name with a fundamentalism-averse word: “love” or “care”… in Greek, of course. Wouldn’t want to be vulgar! ;-))

  •  Agapeism? Agapeical?

  • bobnelsonfr



  • Random Lurker

     I’m pretty sure that’s already happened.

  • AnonymousSam

    Why would an avaricious sociopath go through what is the colossal pain in the ass that is running for president when they would stand to lose everything and gain nothing they don’t already have, so what’s his motivation for seeking higher office?

    If you figure it out, let me know? I keep wondering the same about Mitt Romney.

  • Random Lurker

     If they can turn “empathy” or “amnesty” into a buzzword for evil, they can do the same with these words.

    I really think that a concerted campaign to take back the name and marginalize the whackaloons is the only hope.  If only I knew how to do that.  They crossed the satire/reality line several years ago and havn’t slowed down.

  • bobnelsonfr


    Debate is impossible with whackaloons (I like that!) because they have no qualms about denying facts and logic.

    – “‘Personhood’ begins at conception.”
    – “Why is ‘conception’ a more significant stage of the reproductive process than any other? Meiosis, for example?”
    – “Because conception is when personhood begins.”


  • Sheila

    I have a question: Why does anyone with an open mind want the label “evangelical”? Why not let the term slide into synonymity with “fundamentalism”? And find another term for people who are Bible-oriented but also open-minded?

    Because it’s our word too.  Why should we have to be the ones to leave?  Evangelicalism doesn’t work like that,  I can be an evangelical too, and they’re not allowed to say I’m not.

  • Fusina

     I have of late started wondering if it is some kind of “being better than Dad” kind of thing. His Dad ran for President, therefore he must run for president. I could be wrong here, but it would explain a lot of the weirdness surrounding his campaign.

  • konrad_arflane

     I believe you mean *misspelled*.

    You’re welcome.

  • nerdycellist

    For insight as to Romney’s motivations, google “white horse prophecy”. I know they were talking about this when I was a wee mormon (before I realized that if I wasn’t interested in kids or even maybe marriage, there was literally no place for me in that church or heaven) and I believe they still do now. It’s the belief attributed to Joseph Smith himself that “…someday the constitution will hang by a thread” and that it will be up to the Mormons to save the day. Probably gives him the apocalyptic warm-fuzzies to run for a job with relatively poor pay knowing that he’s fulfilling Joe Smith’s prophecy and saving the US, the most blessed country on the earth.

  • Matri

    My pet peeve is “could of”. And the variants thereof.

  •  Ah! So if we assume Joseph Smith was a false prophet working for Satan (as most RTCs do) and we assume the Ellanjay are correct in their interpretation of Revelation* it becomes clear…

    (dum dum dum)

    That Mitt Romney is the AntiChrist.

    Maybe someone should point this out to the RTCs…

    *Note: I do not believe they are but the RTCs might…

  • EllieMurasaki

    How can Romney possibly be the Antichrist? He’s white. And doesn’t have a foreigny name. And doesn’t have, or is willing to pretend to not have, any fool notions about women being equal to men or queer people (said with a sneer) being human or poor people deserving anything but more grinding poverty.

  • Tricksterson

    Why should they, they already have the South.

  • MM

     Michael Bolton:
    Yeah, well, at least your name isn’t Michael Bolton.

    You know, there’s nothing wrong with that name.

    Michael Bolton:
    There *was* nothing wrong with it… until I was about twelve years old
    and that no-talent ass clown became famous and started winning Grammys.

    Hmm… well, why don’t you just go by Mike instead of Michael?

    Michael Bolton:
    No way! Why should I change? He’s the one who sucks.

    – Office Space

    (Sorry. Couldn’t resist.)

  • Mary Kaye

    That Christianity Today bit about Perkins makes me really angry, because it seems to me that NOTHING Perkins could do would be sufficiently beyond the pale for them to prefer the Law Center.  Yeah, sure, he lies all the time, but he’s On Our Side so he’s still basically okay.

  • P J Evans

    His Dad ran for President, therefore he must run for president.

    Or it’s on his bucket list. (I don’t think he wants the job of President, really, just the title.)

  • Becky

     Does anyone really live in the northernmost parts of Canada?

    Yes, the Inuit.  Who probably really, really wouldn’t appreciate having their lands turned into Jesusland.  I believe Antarctica is uninhabited though.

  • EllieMurasaki

    No permanent residents and about enough transients to, if they all lived in the same place, constitute a single small town. So if the libertarians and Jesus freaks want it, for all of me they can have it.

    Trouble is, one, Seasonal Affective Disorder is nasty in the Land of the Noonday Night (the entire continent, just about, is south of the Antarctic Circle), and two, they will take their children with them, and the kids don’t deserve that.

  •  I agree. I think it’s a bad thing to let people you disagree with vehemently claim all of the labels, tribal affiliations, and statements they want without a fight. If someone decided to redefine “vegetarian” to mean “homophobe” or “al Qaeda terrorist”, I wouldn’t expect vegetarians to just lie down and give up. If you let people just take stuff like that from you, pretty soon you won’t have anything left.

  • hagsrus

    Er – self-contained joke, yes?

  • Kiba

    I believe Antarctica is uninhabited though.

    What did the poor penguins ever do to deserve that?

    Besides once I have my army of attack ferrets that’s where I plan to set up shop before I take over the world.

  • Regarding Romney being the antichrist. Crusader Kings II taught me that Romney is a region in northwest Russia. One with mountains if I recall right…hmm….

  • christopher_young

    I don’t think he wants the job of President, really, just the title

    Happens far too often. (See also: Bush, George W.)

  • Jesus, the drug-dealing Clinton thing. I’d forgotten all about that.

    Ranks up there with Drug Warrior conspiracy-ranting about Clinton letting planes fly out of Mesa, Arkansas to ferry drugs around.

  • Frankly, Mitt’s got the disease a lot of rich people get: they have the disease of “more”. They have to have more. Once you become President you gain access to so many doors being opened for you it’s unbelievable. Bill Clinton is hauling down millions in speaking fees. George W. Bush, the same. And even if they don’t stay in the public eye, there’s a guaranteed pension for the rest of your life even if everything else crashes down around your ears.

    So Mitt is going to use his office to seize even more wealth for his burgeoning commercial empire, and once out of office, will use the immense political connections gained from four years in office (if not eight) to make himself even wealthier than ever.

  • Tricksterson

    Think of the poor penguins!

  • Kiba

    Ha! Love Girl Genius but, alas, I happen to be male so I’m not her. Though, come to think of it, I’m pretty sure I could rock a similar outfit.