By those who preach and pray and teach

“The officer has kept the receipt in his vest since then, he said, ‘to remind me that sometimes people have it worse.'”

“We are asking individuals and faith groups to call for a real jubilee – cancellation of the unjust debts of the most indebted nations, promoting just and progressive taxation, and controlling lending.”

“It was one of the most uncomfortable and enjoyable conversations I’ve had in a long time, one very much worth having, and worth leaving my comfort zone to have.”

Malala Yousufzai would be an excellent and worthy choice for Time magazine’s Person of the Year. (AP photo)

“This legislation, if passed into law, it would automatically make me a serial offender and I would be sentenced to death.”

“Though the safety risk posed by Tazreen’s substandard equipments was understood well before [the deadly] blaze, the same conditions appear to be relatively common among Bangladeshi factories.”

“If these jobs don’t pay enough to keep people out of poverty, we’re all in big trouble.”

We don’t beat them by literally beating them.”

There’s money in making stupid people mad.”

“This isn’t just cognitive dissonance. It’s irresponsible reporting.”

“It turns out that they don’t like disabled people any better than gays, blacks, Latinos, or single women in law school who use contraception.”

“If you do not know what it means to be an evangelical Christian, it basically works like this: you say a prayer, ask Jesus into your heart and then you vote Republican and start watching Fox News. A lot.”

“Essentially, this approach has been our strategy for the last 30 years. How has it worked so far?”

I also would have steered clear of politics.”

“In Hosea ‘son’ means Israel and refers to the Exodus … well, that’s not quite the same as what Matthew was on about.”

“John Paul II did not smoke, but Pope Benedict XVI reportedly does (or once did), apparently favoring Marlboros.”

"Good luck trying to leave the dragon's cave, is all I'm saying. Dragon's are JEALOUS."

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What Are Your Thoughts?leave a comment
  • Baby_Raptor

    Well, I now know I don’t smoke the same brand of cigarettes as the Pope. The weirdest things can brighten a person’s day. *lights another Newport*

  • Jim Roberts

    Fred, my favourite quote from the article about the cop is:

    “Mr. Cano volunteered to give the officer his employee discount to bring down the regular $100 price of the all-weather boots to a little more than $75.”

  • Carstonio

    I would have thought that religions would deem smoking to be sinful on general principle, even before knowing about the addictive and harmful properties. Somehow the image of the Pope lighting up isn’t complete unless he’s also getting drunk on whisky, gambling away the Vatican treasury in poker and blackjack, and regularly making lewd comments about nuns’ breasts. 

  • J-

    *…and regularly making lewd comments about nuns’ breasts*

    A priest finding something to appreciate about adult women: That would actually be a refreshing change.

  • JustoneK

    Not really.

  • J-

    Y’know it might actually have been that I wasn’t being completely serious. But I apologize: Though most have heard of a joke, I understand that not everyone has had the opportunity to meet one face-to-face.

  • JustoneK

    No, I got the joke.  It’s just very, very tiring to whittle down women’s worth to their breasts, that’s all.

  • EllieMurasaki

    I can’t speak for JustoneK, of course, but I got that you were joking. I just don’t think it’s funny.

  • J-

    Yes, because that’s totally what I was doing.

    I’ll stop responding now, because I know that no matter what I say, you’ve already decided that yes, that’s the ONLY thing I could possibly have meant and am evil and stupid and bad and misogynist and consider women just breasts with legs.

  • JustoneK

    Don’t get ahead of me.

  • J-

    Should have added: I’ll credit this community with really being on to something that being anti-baby-killer-satanists is indeed the Fantasy Identity that many RTCs glom onto. But guess what: This is what YOU people do–you are the Righteous Gotcha’ers of Antifeminist Language. Someone says something that, if you squint and stand on your head and bury and toad at midnight, could be interpreted as antifeminist.

    And from then on in, hoo doggies, you’re like one of those vicious Australian tunnel rats who never lets go once they bite down. No apology, no amount of explanation or self-evident sarcasm is enough for you: You’ve sunk your teeth in, you’ve caught of glimpse of yourself in the Heroes of Feminism mirror, you’ve applied the label, and dammit that’s the end.

    So here, I’ll save us all some time: I’m a horrible antifeminist misogynist bastard who loves rape and was the Elevator Guy and basically live on Men’s Right’s forae and fulfill every inkling you have of bad character. There are no mitigating good qualities about me and you have not misunderstood me the tiniest bit. Everything you have ever thought is completely correct.

    There, feel the surge of endorphins coursing through you? Merry Christmas.

  • JustoneK

    See, I had understood that.  I also didn’t think it was funny.

    But clearly it’s because I am not educated in the ways of funny, and not a problem on his end.

  • JustoneK

    Dood.  Frinkle says relax.

    Did I say any of that?

  •  So, one important part of classifying the “anti-baby-killer-satanists ” as a fantasy identity is looking around and noticing that there aren’t any dead babies in evidence.

    That is, it’s not just the behavior of what we often call the Anti-Kitten-Burning Coalition that makes them suspect, it’s the behavior combined with relative nonexistence of anything resembling the thing they claim to be fighting. If there were a lot of Kitten-Burning going on, the intensity with which the AKBC fights it might be reasonable, but since there isn’t, it’s not.

    Would you agree?

    So, when you assert that this is also what we Righteous Gotcha’ers of Antifeminist Language do when we call out such language, I infer that you’re claiming something analogous… that on your account there isn’t actually any harm being done in the first place. Perhaps if there were people being harmed by such language in some way, the intensity of the RGAL might be reasonable,  but on your account there is no such harm, and therefore it’s not.

    Am I correctly characterizing your view?

  • I thought J was referring to the fact that a Catholic $BOSS_DUDE would actually be intrerested in adults.

  • J-

    Is there any possible answer I could give that would *not* result in you stepladdering up my ass?

  • Mark Z.

    I would have thought that religions would deem smoking to be sinful on general principle

    Why would you think this?

  • Whoa. When I see an URL with “fox-news-and-the-republican-party-are-not-your-friends” in it, I don’t expect the reason to be “because they aren’t extreme enough.”

    The bit Fred quoted is not ironic in the least. *boggles*

  • “Mea culpa, mea culpa, mea maxima culpa”?

  • Tricksterson

    If only.  Actually I’m willing to bet that there have been Popes who have done all of those things, especially during the Mideval and Rennaisance periods, just not where anyone could see.

  • hidden_urchin

    Anyone else see that the Republicans voted down the ratification of the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities?

    Remember, folks, a vote against a symbolic treaty on the rights of the disabled is a vote against the Anti-Christ.

  • Aeryl

    You know that cop story was cool, and it was awesome that he did, but boy did I EVER hate how it was reported. 

    The sensational way, the fact that they went and got the security footage of the cop in the store, the interviews with other customers in the store. 

    It was horrifying.  And the purpose of this glorification was to do something that Fred is always decrying, which is to push this idea that individual charity can overcome systemic problems. 

  • vsm

    His Awesomeness Pope Alexander VI and some of his other Renaissance colleagues didn’t care all that much whether someone knew, actually.

  • I think it’s just the fact that cops are usually such fucking douchebags that one of them doing something NICE is a little shocking.

  • BrokenBell

    Maybe “Sorry, I was trying to make a joke, but apparently it wasn’t appropriate. I’ll try to be more careful with my words in future”? Since you asked for suggestions. I dunno. What was actually said to you, here? A couple people were unimpressed with a joke you made, sarcasm or not. That was kind of it. Are you totally sure that warranted sweeping indictments of the community as being consumed by its own self-righteousness? Against whom was your tirade directed, exactly?

  • EllieMurasaki

    Someone says something that, if you squint and stand on your head and bury and toad at midnight, could be interpreted as antifeminist.

    Maybe you have to do all that work. We who have boobs as part of the factory default settings or who have installed that modification, we who are really fucking sick of being seen as nothing but the support infrastructure for our boobs (save the ta-tas! save second base!), it is really fucking obvious to us when someone says that the only relevant characteristic of adult women is that they have boobs.

    Nuns, even. Leaving aside the whole chastity deal, nuns are supposed to have, and to be known to have, something more than dust between the ears. Might be anything from a desire to enact the Church’s mission of fixing the world to a deep and abiding love for analysis of Aquinas and Augustine. (Assuming Catholic nuns, anyway. I don’t know what Buddhist nuns do all day.) Doesn’t matter what exactly it is. The point is it’s there (and, secondarily to my point, that it is religious in nature). That is the defining characteristic of nuns.
    And you still see something amusing about reducing these women to their boobs.

    Fuck off.

  • I’ll stop responding now…

    …and yet you didn’t…

    For those not familiar with J’s trolling tone and zero-to-screaming-douchebag conversions, let’s review the chain of events.

    J makes a joke*

    One post is made that disagrees with the joke. 

    J responds with a dry, patronizing remark intended to insult the respondant as well as anyone else who might disagree with his humor.

    Two other people chime in saying “we realize you were attempting humor, but it’s offensive”. 

    Aaand then J goes the full metal douche-bag, putting words in other people’s mouths and beating the strawmen with all his might. 8 minutes later, he’s in full frothing-at-the-mouth mode, insulting everyone who’s a regular reader, smashing through whole legions of strawmen in his quest to justify… a weak joke with a bad premise.*

    When J gets a calm, measured response to his unhinged ranting, he posts an overly defensive retort (stepladdering up your ass? If you hadn’t hung it out there, it wouldn’t be getting kicked so hard…)

    If history is a guide, we might get one more infantile outburst, and then he’ll retreat for the rest of the thread.

    *about that joke… the humor seemed to be grounded in a premise that priests don’t appreciate anything about adult women, so liking their breasts would be a step up. The problem is that the Catholic church appreciate adult women, but primarily as incubators and help-meets. (see also: contraception, abortion, and ordination) So adding a sexual component to that appreciation isn’t actually a step up at all. 

  • LL

    Eh, they do it to everybody.  Just ignore them. 

    I believe the technical term for them is “concern troll.”

    I mean, they have the right to their opinions, but they do get tiresome, quickly. 

  •  Yes.

  • “…aren’t any dead babies in evidence…”
    And now you’ve got me thinking of Dead Baby Jokes.

  • JustoneK

    Oh, I didn’t know he was a regular.  That does help with context.

  • EllieMurasaki

    No, ‘concern troll’ is ‘I truly support your cause, but have you considered the possibility that the other guys ought to win?’

  • Yeah, I considered going there but chose not to.

    Mostly, I prefer to avoid the “babykiller” metaphor here, because I’m aware that there really is a community of people who believe there’s a coalition of literal babykillers (of which I’m a proud member) that has taken over American politics. It’s rarely a good idea to use a controversial issue as a metaphor for discussing a less-controversial issue.

  • Carstonio

    Why would I expect religions to deem smoking sinful? Because for many years the habit was associated with macho rebellion, at least in the minds of many teens when they started smoking. Even today there are many adults who defend their smoking as proudly politically incorrect while complaining about laws banning it in restaurants and bars.

  • Jessica_R

    Today’s Team Slacktivist Heifer International Reminder, we’ve already raised 80 bucks guys!

  • Both sides in this derail are stupid. J made a joke that could have been funny, but the subject material (child abuse) is just far too serious to joke about in the way he did. Then he gets attacked because apparently his assertion that Catholic priests don’t like women is sexist. The joke did not in any way reduce women to sex objects, the point of the joke is that the priests in question would be reducing the women to sex objects, and that’s (theoretically) amusing because it would actually raise the priest’s opinion of them, because they are normally only sexually attracted to children (which is why the joke isn’t funny).

    Then J reacts like a dumbass, and the whole conversation turns into a big dumb trainwreck. Then EllieMurasaki goes on a spiel because she saw somebody refer to women as having breasts.

    What I’m trying to say is, everybody shut up.

  • EllieMurasaki

    ZE. My pronoun is ZE.

    My problem is not with saying women HAVE breasts, it’s with saying that breasts are the ONLY IMPORTANT THING about people who have them, which is, guess what, EXACTLY what J said.

    Who the fuck are you, anyway? I’ve never seen your name before. And given that it’s an example of a stereotypically male wallet name (even if not necessarily your actual wallet name), I am absolutely confident in saying that starting your Slacktivist experience by mansplaining to us is not something you want to do. Little late for you, but maybe the next guy will learn from your example.

  • JustoneK

    How very dare you not laugh at the nice man’s jokes.

  • EllieMurasaki

    See? That is how one does humor right.

  • DStecks

    This is the person you’re replying to.  I’ve been a Slacktivite since Fred was about halfway through Left Behind. I’ve changed over accounts because I can’t make the comments not display my middle initial. I’ve always suspected that makes me look like a jackass, so it’s nice to have confirmation. Since you’ve asked who the fuck I am, I feel like I should state that I consider myself a feminist. We do not come from different places politically. 

    I have no idea what mental gymnastics you did to arrive at a place where J was saying that breasts are the most important thing. He said, and I quote: “A priest finding something to appreciate about adult women: That would actually be a refreshing change.” That statement simply does not say anything about the value of breasts, at all. Period. It just doesn’t. You are being willfully ignorant.

    I am not trying to say that I thought the joke was funny or in good taste, it was neither, but your response to it was categorically wrong.

  • Jessica_R

    I’m still waiting for the second coming of Ken Russell who will make the movie about the Borgia Pope who held *nude prostitute races* in the *Vatican*. History is a delightful answer to the religious types who sigh that everything was better and proper in the good old days. 

  • EllieMurasaki

    So when J said a priest ogling a woman’s breasts (and by implication valuing nothing else about the woman) would be an improvement over the priest valuing nothing about the woman at all, that didn’t have anything whatsoever to do with the comparative value of breasts and the person they’re attached to?

    Somebody’s reading comprehension sucks. I’m pretty sure it isn’t mine.

  • No. I’m sorry, but you’re wrong. That’s not what J said at all, much less “exactly what J said”. Exactly what J said: “A priest finding something to appreciate about adult women: That would actually be a refreshing change.”

    That “something” was breasts, but the joke is not “women = breasts” but “priests = pedophiles”, which, as pretty much everyone agrees, isn’t really very funny.

  • Nope, it’s yours. The joke has nothing to do with “the comparative value of breasts and the person they’re attached to”, it’s “the comparative value of sexual attraction to adult women versus sexual attraction to children” to pretend otherwise is to be deliberately obtuse.

  • DStecks

    It didn’t. You are creating subtext where none exists. It was a simple “something is better than nothing” snark which you are imbuing with meaning because you saw the word breasts.

  • JustoneK

    Wellp, there we have it.  What I interpreted is clearly not what was meant, so I must be totally wrong.

    Glad this was explained to me in such a nice, not at all condescending fashion.

  • ReverendRef

    So . . . detracting from the joke thread . . .

    “This legislation, if passed into law, it would automatically make me a serial offender and I would be sentenced to death.”

    On another site I follow this issue is a huge deal.  The Anglican church in Uganda sent a letter of some kind to the governing body in favor of this legislation stating that “it would be a nice Christmas gift for the people of Uganda.”

    I can think of lots of gifts to give at Christmas, this is not one of them.

    The schism that we here in Anglican-land are experiencing really revolves around human rights; as in, the Episcopal Church is trying to include all people, the conservatives in the family want to restrict not only who can be part of the church but, apparently, who is even human.  I know unity’s supposed to be a big thing in Christianity, but I’m more inclined to say, “It’s been nice knowing you.  Let’s talk again when you get around to loving your neighbor and respecting the dignity of all human beings.”

    Oh, and Baby_Raptor:  I now know I don’t smoke the same brand of cigarettes as the Pope.  I just had this image of Pope Benedict making like Mick Jagger singing “Satisfaction.” 

  • JustoneK

    That has a lot of potential as a music video.  How much footage of the Pope do we have?

  • Aiwhelan

     It tends to be discouraged; in 2000, JPII declared a Jubilee year, and one of the things being promoted was an indulgence granted to anyone who quit smoking. The wording kind of put it with the 7 Deadly Sins- ie, something that isn’t so bad in and of itself, but causes harm to yourself and encourages you to greater evil.