7 things @ 11 o’clock (7.10)

1. Lester Maddox “increasingly counter-cultural” on restaurant issues. Inquisition “increasingly counter-cultural” on heliocentrism. Bash Brothers “increasingly counter-cultural” on benefits of PEDs. I guess that’s one way to put it. Certainly sounds nicer than “wrong side of history.”

2. Tony Jones discusses “Why Every Christian Leader Needs to Have a Good Answer About Homosexuality.” Kimberly Knight says, “amen” … with one qualification, “Why Every Christian Leader Needs to Have a Good Relationship With a Homosexual.”

3. It’s not just Vladimir Putin — anti-gay religious right groups also have a soulmate in disgraced Zimbabwean dictator Robert Mugabe.

But good news for clueless trolls allied with the philosophy of Mugabe and Putin: They have biblical carte blanche to torment and abuse Mr. Aloysius P. Van Landingham of Prescott, Ariz.

The Bible — or, at least, the Bible as they claim to read it — clearly allows them to condemn Mr. Van Landingham. It allows them to revile him, insult him, torment him, deny his civil and legal rights and deny him access to the sacraments of the church.

After all, can you show me a single passage in the Old Testament or the New Testament that affirms Aloysius P. Van Landingham of Prescott, Ariz.? I am open to see any cogent, compelling and scripturally supported case made that God condones or blesses Aloysius P. Van Landingham of Prescott, Ariz. I have been waiting a very long time.

(We used to attract a better quality of troll around here. This stuff — taken from comments troll-deposited here yesterday — doesn’t even rise to the level of sophistry, it’s like … froshistry. Prideful, sanctimonious and stupid is no way to go through life, son.)  

4. I’ve mentioned before that I’m a big fan of Paul Bibeau’s Goblinbooks blog. His posts have a comic structure that’s a lot harder to pull off than he makes it look. Consider, for example, Pat Robertson, the televangelist who routinely says howlingly awful things. It’s not easy to come up with a fresh way of discussing Robertson at this point, but “A Message From the Terrified People Sitting Next to Pat Robertson” does the trick.

Or think of all that you’ve read in recent weeks about the NSA’s massive surveillance programs. Bibeau’s recent posts purportedly from intelligence chief James Clapper — see “‘We Need to Be the Country We Were Right After 9/11’ by James Clapper” and the hilariously specific “Intelligence Chief James Clapper Answers a Craigslist Missed Connection” — cut to the heart of the matter as deftly as any other commentary I’ve seen.

There’s a formula of sorts, but it’s a good formula, and it all starts with an aptly chosen absurd premise. With his latest post, though, the absurd premise is too audacious to re-enact — it can only be described: What if the United States of America is nothing more than an elaborate Andy Kaufman-style prank that got out of hand? Follow the logic and it almost seems logical. And the final two sentences, I think, say something darn near profound — about America, or about jokes, or both.

5. James McGrath shares a short video of “N.T. Wright and James Dunn on the New Perspective on Paul.” I don’t like that term “new perspective,” because it’s misleading. The so-called new perspective isn’t new at all, but serves to correct a centuries-long mistake. That mistake was a genuinely new thing — a wrong turn that led theology astray, while the so-called “new” perspective is simply an attempt to get us back on course.

I suppose this may sound dry, and the video — a couple of old white theologians talking — might seem dry. But this is actually explosive stuff. It explains, for example, why Martin Luther’s anti-Semitism can’t easily be dismissed as an unfortunate incidental personal failing. Wright and Dunn accentuate the positive, emphasizing the aspects of Pauline theology that the new perspective helps us to understand. And they downplay the negative, with Dunn urging us not to understand any of this as meaning that “Luther got it wrong.” He doesn’t want to say that, so instead he says that there are a host of things Luther didn’t get right which need to be corrected. I’m not sure I follow that distinction.

6. Will Campbell died last month. Campbell is one of those people it seems as though I ought to have read, but I’ve never actually read anything by him. I may have to correct that. “We’re all bastards. But God loves us anyway,” Campbell said. That’ll preach.

Bonus: He liked to quote Ezekiel 23:20 — the dirtiest verse in the Bible. And how can you not be intrigued by a guy who said things like this:

True soul freedom can never be found in any institution. If they will pay you, let them. I did it too. But never trust them. Never bow the knee to them. They are all after your soul. Your ultimate, absolute, uncompromising allegiance. Your soul. All of them.

More on Campbell here and here. If you’ve read Will Campbell’s stuff, where would you recommend I start?

7. Let me add my congratulations to David and John!

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Left Behind Classic Fridays, No. 83: 'Today's Gospel reading'
  • aunursa

    From the Martin Luther link:

    So I mentioned this on Facebook (because that’s how I roll), and was a little surprised by how quickly many of my friends rushed to defend Luther’s reputation. They said that everyone was anti-Semitic in those days, that Luther was frustrated after trying to convert the Jews, that this was all based on a misinterpretation of Scripture. Luther should not be remembered for this “flaw,” they said, but for his great contribution to Christian theology.

    She should ask her friends: “If you were Jewish, would you accept your own justification for Luther’s venemous hatred?”

  • dpolicar

    It’s a good question, generally speaking.

    For my own part, as a Jew, I accept that argument as valid but insufficient. That is, yes, I endorse judging Luther against his own cultural context rather than mine. That said…
    1) No, not everyone was anti-Semitic in those days; some understood that Jews deserved the same dignity and consideration as other humans. If Luther didn’t while others in his cohort did, that’s on him.

    2) Grownups are expected to experience frustration without acting out on it in harmful ways.
    3) Nobody will remember Luther for his anti-Semitism alone, any more than they remember his equally anti-Semitic childhood friend Steve. If he weren’t a significant Christian theologian and if Christians weren’t a significant part of our cultural heritage, we wouldn’t be discussing this at all.

    That said, trying to total up all of a person’s positive and negative traits and actions on some kind of common scale to come up with a single “good or bad” judgment mostly doesn’t work, any more than adding the temperature of an object to its mass does. Judging people involves comparing incommensurables.

  • Hexep

    I would sincerely question your first point. Do we have any writings from the time period where prominent European gentiles are like, ‘Jews deserve the same dignity and consideration as other human beings?’

  • Alix

    We have some that come pretty damn close to saying that from various church leaders at various times in the medieval and early modern periods; civil authorities also did extend rights and protections to Jews at various times, notably in Poland, including at least one incident where the sale of Luther’s works were banned (somewhere in Germany; where exactly escapes me at the moment) after a priest used them to incite antisemitic violence.

    Of course, things were far from all sunshine and roses. But humanity is often varied, and even when authorities themselves take a position, that doesn’t mean all the people blindly follow it.

  • Daniel

    It’s also important to remember that even in countries where antisemitism was ingrained in the culture, the powers that be accepted Jewish communities for their usefulness- particularly in circumventing church requirements about usury. I’m thinking of England here, where the word “holocaust” applied to Jewish people was first used- but earlier than Luther, in the actual mediaeval period.

    Bohemia, scene of the proto-Reformation uprising by Jan Hus, had, and still had until the war, a huge royally endorsed Jewish community- the ghetto in Prague was issued its own flag and was given near self-governing powers from the 15th century. Jews in Venice were much less persecuted than in other Italian states- maybe not explicit endorsement from the state, but again they had a reasonable degree of freedom and acceptance compared to say Spain and Portugal at the same time.
    As mentioned above Poland (which was much bigger and more powerful then, and covered a hell of a lot of eastern and central Europe) was also very tolerant. These were powerful nations, the seats of Empires, and they officially endorsed their Jewish citizens. Luther’s extreme antisemitism was not reflective of every European state, nor even of every German state at the time.

  • dpolicar

    Well, I’m no expert on medieval anti-Semitism; my position is based more on a general belief that no matter how hateful the climate of the times there are always individuals who show human decency to their neighbors, and that Luther’s cohort did not exclusively comprise prominent European gentile authors.

    That said, a little Googling turns up this wiki page, which seems to suggest that even among prominent Christian theologians, the idea of letting European Jews live their lives as Jews was not entirely unheard of, and had not been for centuries.

  • Daniel

    Also this was not mediaeval, it was Renaissance/Early Modern. That means it coincided with the rise in humanism across Europe, and an increased emphasis on learning and tolerance, and the increase in interest in the Kabalah- for alchemical studies that meant Jewish mystics and Rabbis were afforded royal patronage across Europe.

  • Kubricks_Rube

    I’ve found that reading Luther’s words out loud shuts down the justifications very quickly. It’s tough to handwave “They are our public enemies. […]If they could kill us all, they would gladly do it. They do it often, especially those who pose as physicians.[…] They administer poison to someone from which he could die in an hour, a month, a year, ten or twenty years” or ignore the queasy familiarity of calls to burn down synagogues and put the Jews in work camps.

  • Jenny Islander

    Huh. My ALC (now ELCA) confirmation class made no attempt to brush away Luther’s horrific bigotry. The pastor said that it’s possible to be a good and decent person and also believe and preach some horrible things; conversely, people can be horrible jerks in daily life and say beautiful things. Luther’s understanding of grace, he said, was in his opinion Heavenly, but he would understand if we didn’t want to be associated with Luther the person. (Note that our confirmation class took place in our last year of high school, so we were looking at striking out on our own anyway. The same speech given to a bunch of junior high kids would have been a bad joke.)

  • danallison

    Being on “the right side of history,” I remember as a Marxist obsession. The future, of course, hasn’t happened, so no one can predict it, apart from God. What’s happened is that moderate/progressive Christians are learning that no matter how strongly we have supported gay marriage (“marriage equality”), no matter how many gay friends we have developed, ANY deviation from political correctness results in a show trial and a scapegoating. We lose jobs and friends while people like Fred here ratchet up the intimidation. Support for gay marriage has peaked, and the backlash may be surprisingly powerful. The Soviet Union thought it was on history’s right side; turns out instead that history’s garbage dump is growing daily. The current attempt to crucify Orson Scott Card will accelerate the backlash, and like Chik-Fil-A, his film will do boffo backlash-based box office.

  • Jessica_R
  • danallison

    Gory

  • Lori

    Fred is right. The low quality of trolls we’re getting is just sad.

  • Jim Roberts

    I don’t remember ever having high quality trolls around here. Of course, I’m a message board moderator, so the idea of a “high quality troll” is laughable.

  • dpolicar

    “Treason doth never prosper, what’s the reason? For if it prosper, none dare call it Treason.”

  • Lori

    We have, on occasion, had trolls who were at least coherent, not totally delusional and putting in the effort. The last year or so, not so much. I suspect that’s at least partially due to the fact that there are fewer and fewer people with any sense at all left on the anti-equality side.

  • AnonaMiss

    High quality trolling is absolutely a thing. Let me demonstrate using something my friend did about a year ago:

    My friend’s name is Michael. One day, for the sole purpose of trolling, he changed his first name on Facebook to Metatron. At which, a few members of his family threw a shitfit and accused him of blasphemy for naming himself after an angel of the Lord.

  • Lori

    Your friend’s family members are Medieval Jewish mystics?

  • Alix

    That kind of angelology is still very active among some weirder segments of Christian fundamentalism.

    …That’s actually how I got the first angelology/demonology dictionary I ever owned.

  • Daniel

    I love to hear people’s stories about how they got their first angelology/demonology dictionaries. Do you remember what song was playing? I got mine from a large book warehouse in south Manchester. It was pissing rain outside, and I got a handful of Michael Moorecock books too. The guy on the counter gave me a £2 discount. Not as romantic as I’d imagined…

  • Alix

    LOL.

    In my case, it was a gift from a very … interesting pillar-of-the-church-type woman at the nutty fundamentalist church my mom attended very briefly. This woman, upon learning I loved studying mythology, got very concerned about my exposure to demons and decided to give me something to start me on a proper Christian education.

    …it just exacerbated my fascination with mythology. I guess I interrogated the dictionary from the wrong perspective. :P

  • Daniel

    Have you read James VI’s book about witches? Self penned (unlike his bible) and inspired Macbeth.

  • Alix

    Daemonologie? I have a copy … somewhere … and I’ve skimmed through it, but I’m sorry to say it’s still on my “Get Off My Lazy Ass And Read This Stuff” list. :/

    Too many books, too little time. Even when we’re just talking demons and witchcraft. XD

    I don’t think I knew it inspired Macbeth, though in retrospect that doesn’t surprise me.

  • Daniel

    Yep, Macbeth was a whole arse kissing exercise by Shakespeare because Banquo was James’ ancestor. James was really paranoid about witches and the gunpowder plot really shit him up, so Shakespeare wrote a play to tell him how awesome the Stuarts were and how witches were definitely a real thing to worry about, and most importantly, how he should keep paying Shakespeare. James used to conduct witch trials personally. And he used to walk about St James’ with his hand (literally) down the Duke of Buckingham’s hose. He wasn’t gay though.

  • JustoneK

    incidentally, amazon? text online? I’d buy that shit were it available.

  • Alix

    It’s on Gutenberg, which I just discovered. Which makes me happy because ebook.

  • Alix

    Daemonologie on Gutenberg, if anyone’s interested.

  • Jeff Weskamp

    Mine was the Encyclopedia of Angels, by Gustav Erickson. I remember it had a spell in back for making someone fall in love with the caster (write the names Michael, Gabriel, Raphael,and Ananael on a piece of paper and place it at the head of your loved one’s bed) as well as other forms of angel-based white magic. I found it for sale at a flea market in Fort Collins for $4. I threw it out when I broke up with a girlfriend because it also had a “death incantation” in its Appendix and I was tempted to try it out on her. I normally wouldn’t talk about this, but you folks are different…..

  • Alix

    This book? That’s the one the lady gave me. I still have it somewhere – I find it really useful when I have writer’s block. XD

  • http://anonsam.wordpress.com/ AnonymousSam

    *Twitches* Gustav’s entry on Samael never fails to irritate me. Most lore on Samael is inaccurate to begin with, but the “blind god” interpretation is an extra special mistranslation.

  • AnonaMiss

    Rural southern black baptists with a strong charismatic streak and some Gullah influences.

  • Jeff Weskamp

    I’ve always found hoodoo (folk magic practiced by various groups in America’s Southern states, including the Gullah) extremely fascinating. I know the recipes for making goofer dust and war water, although I’ve never use them. My favorite hoodoo techniques are surrounding your house with red brick dust to keep out enemies, and pounding nails into your front door in the shape of a cross to keep out evil spirits. I saw an ad once for “devil’s shoestrings” (a rattan-like vine used to “bind” evil influences) and was tempted to order a couple for my collection of arcane artifacts, but money was short that week.

  • AnonaMiss

    Yeah, it’s really interesting. Michael has told me a couple stories about his late grandmother and what she called “roots”, but there seems to have been a That’s Not Christian push in his area around the time of his parents’ generation, as the people he’s asked about it since his grandmother’s passing have either not known any of the particulars, or scolded him for wanting to know.

    Too many folk traditions go that way.

  • Alix

    ‘S why I love collecting folk lore. That was one of the fun things about working in a new age shop – everyone who came in had a story to tell, and felt free to tell it.

  • Alix

    I’ve been very lucky in that I fell in at a relatively young age (high school) with an awesome network of folks who try to keep their folk traditions/folk magic alive. Heck, they even got my mom (then a die-hard Baptist) to start sharing the weird mix of German and Hawaiian stuff she picked up growing up.

    I don’t know what you’d call the specific folk tradition/s I learn/am learning (one never stops, really) – some people are real sketchy about using “hoodoo” for anyone other than practitioners of particular Southern Black folk magic, and much of the stuff I learned I learned from white folk, but it’s a parallel set of stuff with, from what I gather, a lot of overlap. And of course Northern VA’s got a highly transient and highly varied population of folks coming in from all over, so we’ve got a nice little melting pot going on*. If one’s not insisting on sticking to “their kind.” (Grr.)

    There are some good stores out in the wilds of the web, if you do feel the urge to expand your collection. XD

    *My favorite customer at the new age shop I sometimes help out at is a nice elderly Vietnamese lady who always comes in with a new bit of folklore about elephants. She really, really likes elephants. (And drinks all the rooibos whenever we have it in, dammit. XD)

    I … am very passionate about folk lore/traditions/etc. As evidenced by my epic post. XD And one thing I find really interesting is how the internet has, in some ways, helped preserve folk knowledge and create or strengthen networks of people who know this stuff.

  • Daniel

    Yes.

  • Alix

    …okay, that just made my afternoon.

  • The_L1985

    …but…Michael

    brb laughing my head off

  • Jim Roberts

    I sit corrected, ‘Miss.

  • Michael Pullmann

    That’s brilliant. I’ve got to try that sometime.

  • Daniel

    We should wish for better trolls. The standard at the moment is grimm.

  • Alix

    I know, they really get my goat.

  • Emcee, cubed

    If you believe that. I’ve got a bridge I can sell you.

  • Jim Roberts

    I keep waiting for this to turn into a coherent argument. What a waste of time.

  • JustoneK

    “We lose jobs and friends”

  • dpolicar

    When the country is enforcing laws making it a crime for me to have sex with my partner, support for letting us have sex in the privacy of our own bedrooms as long as we “act normal” in public is valued and appreciated.

    When those laws are repealed, the same position is viewed as oppressive. Not because it’s a “deviation from political correctness”, whatever that actually means, but because it actually is oppressive.

    Said differently: supporting my status as a second-class legal citizen when the norm is treating me as a criminal is the act of an ally. Supporting my status as a second-class legal citizen when the norm is treating me as an equal is the act of an enemy. Context matters.

    But, sure, I can see how someone in that position may well resent the transition. They were my ally all this time, and now that the context has changed I turn around and treat them like an enemy.

    And, sure, if enough people resent it, that can fuel a “backlash”… perhaps I’ll be seen as “uppity” and need to be kept “in my place.” This, too, is the act of an enemy.

    In my culture, people have the freedom to act as my enemy. They are even free to pretend in the process that they are actually my allies and that I’m just ungrateful or confused, or tell any other lies will get them what they want.

    My enemies have been losing for some decades now, and I look forward to them continuing to do so, because they are in the wrong.

  • danallison

    You create your own enemies. One supposes you can’t stand true equality since victim status has brought you so much sympathy and attention.

  • John (not McCain)

    What’s the matter, princess? Life outside the castle got ya down?

  • SisterCoyote

    For pity’s sake, dude, can you cut it out with the sexism?

  • Guest

    He’s referring to your elitism rather than your gender. Get your slanders in order.

  • SisterCoyote

    …he was talking to you. John is a left-wing atheist who frequently attacks people who he feels are being bigots with language that many of us, who might otherwise agree with him, feel is unwarranted.

  • danallison

    Well, golly gosh gee, I am freaking honored. Then you BOTH need to get your slanders in order.

  • SisterCoyote

    Wait, where did I slander you?

  • JustoneK

    query: are you using slander in the American legal sense?

  • Daniel

    One assumes he must be. Doesn’t one?

  • SisterCoyote

    Ah yes, I forgot that “wanting to get married to someone I love” is so abhorrent and upsetting as to create enemies.

    (I was just about to say “aw, we had a troll yesterday, and I missed it? I spent so much time looking for something to procrastinate with, too…)

  • Guest

    The intimidation, the scapegoating, and the public trials of people like Orson Scott Card are teaching moderate Christians and progressives like myself the truth of Christ’s words: Give not that which is holy unto the dogs, neither cast ye your pearls before swine, lest they trample them under their feet, and turn again and REND you.

  • SisterCoyote

    First off: …public trials? Wow. I must have missed that one, I don’t remember anything but people occasionally saying things like “He’s a jerk” or “I’m not reading his books anymore, because he’s said awful things about me and/or people I love,” and honestly, even through all that, my youngest brother, who’s bi and an atheist, still reads his books and urges me to do the same. He still makes a crapton of money on a regular basis.

    You might want to check your victim complex, my friend.

    And please tell me – how on earth are you qualifying “moderate” and “progressive”? And also could you clarify what you mean by that final quote? I don’t see how it fits the context.

  • Wednesday

    Haven’t you been watching the news? Card was on trial because he refused to gay-marry his assigned new partner. This happened right after a thirteen-year-old fanfic writer accidentally invaded the Card family home and kicked Card’s children out on the street by writing “My Adventures With Ender and Bean At Battle School” on the family computer.

  • Lori

    Orson Scott Card has a movie coming out which he wants people to see and he had a gig writing a comic book that I have no doubt he would have liked to keep. Some people don’t want to give him money because he’s a hateful asshole, so they refused to buy the comic and they’re planning not to see his movie. That’s their right. Card does not have a right to their money and no one is rending him, you big old drama queen. Card has spent the last 20 years saying far, far worse things about GLBTQ people than they’re saying about him. His words are more like pig shit than pearls.

  • Lorehead

    Which said, the only reason to boycott him is to shun him personally because of his role with NOM; Ender’s Game is a great book and doesn’t insult gay people. I won’t tell people to shun him or not.

    Losing the Superman gig because the artist flat-out refused to work with him must have been humiliating, although I doubt the amount of money at stake was large. I have no idea what he would have written, although I assume he did not need to be told to keep his opinions on gay people out of it.

  • Lori

    Not just his role with NOM. Joining their board was just the latest in a very long line of nasty anti-gay crap. Card is pretty much the poster boy for self-loathing closet cases and he’s really ugly about it.

  • Jessica_R
  • Daniel

    Well stop bloody whining and do that then. Just keep all your pearls to yourself and allow all the other people to get on with their lives. How are Christians being scapegoated?

  • Daniel

    I spent far too much time replying to him. I’m new to this, and it was a red rag to a bullshitter. You haven’t missed much.

  • http://shiftercat.livejournal.com/ ShifterCat

    I prefer not to let hateful statements stand, even if it means feeding a troll.

  • Daniel

    I just get genuinely curious- I really want to understand what he believes and why. Which is why it’s so frustrating that most of his replies are smug non-answers like “Wise up”. It has all the substance of the joke on a lolly stick, but apparently is sufficient basis for a whole ethos.

  • Lori

    True equality? And that would be what, him gratefully accepting as many rights as you’re willing to give him and never expecting anything more? Sure, because your comfort is totally the issue.

  • dpolicar

    That turns out not to be the case.

  • http://flickr.com/photos/sedary_raymaker/ Naked Bunny with a Whip

    …says the liar screeching about “show trials”.

  • Daniel

    Does one? Does one indeed? So what would true equality be, because you do sound like the sort of person who thinks true equality is your group having more rights than another.

  • http://anonsam.wordpress.com/ AnonymousSam

    Don’t forget the legal discrimination! And murder. Don’t forget the murder. Although for those of us who’ve had to deal with it, it’s harder to forget than you’d think. I guess we’re all just a bunch of drama queens when it comes to being killed.

  • general_apathy

    Support for gay marriage has peaked, and the backlash may be surprisingly powerful.

    I’m still trying to figure out the logistics of this. Where is this backlash going to come from? Are the dwindling number of anti-gay bigots is preparing to go Super Saiyan, or were some of the supporters of gay marriage just… pretending? For, uh… reasons yet to be determined?

    And more importantly, how can you “backlash” against something that doesn’t affect you in any way?

  • Lori

    The Silent Majority is going to rise up.

    ETA: Just to be clear, this is sarcasm.

  • Guest

    Thank you, Lori. we are tired of being intimidated and betrayed by people we have loved. Gays have won in 13 states now and may reach 20 before the repeals begin. I’m no fan of the Christian right, but watch for them to win big in 2014 and 2016, and for PC judges to be replaced by men who will not be bullied and intimidated. General Apathy, you are months behind the curve here.

  • Lori

    Dude, I was making fun of you. There is no Silent Majority on this issue. People’s ideas about equal rights have changed. You and others like you are being left behind by time. No one is bullying you or intimidating you. They’re just disagreeing with you and also thinking that you’re a jerk. Which you pretty much are.

  • Jessica_R
  • general_apathy

    Months behind the curve?! Say it ain’t so!

    And here I was, trying to keep my political opinions in season. :(

  • The_L1985

    Dude, at this point the only “silent majority” is thinking, “Man, why won’t people shut up about this whole gay-marriage thing and just let gay people get married already?”

  • Daniel

    Bullied and intimidated?! What? They’ve been bullied and intimidated into not bullying and intimidating other people? Really?

  • http://shiftercat.livejournal.com/ ShifterCat

    “It does not do to rely too much on silent majorities, Evey, for silence is a fragile thing — one loud noise, and it’s gone.” — Alan Moore, V for Vendetta

  • themunck

    Wouldn’t that technically be “- V, Alan Moore’s V for Vendetta“? If we just quote the author, rather than the character, we could end up attributing a position he does not actually hold to him. Like how Harry Potter is demonic because Voldemort says power for power’s sake is good.

  • http://shiftercat.livejournal.com/ ShifterCat

    I wasn’t entirely sure how to format that quote.

    In any case, I understand that Vendetta does reflect a lot of Moore’s views.

  • ohiolibrarian

    PC = not being rude or bigoted. And I notice that you seem to think that all judges are (or should be?) men. Really?

  • J_Enigma32

    and for PC judges

    Translation: Waaaaah! People call me out for being an ignorant bigot *pouty face*

  • general_apathy

    Right, forgot about the “Silent Majority”.

    It’s like the dark matter of political groups—supposed to lend weight to things, but has never been directly observed.

  • Orc Orchard

    Yea verily.

    “Silent Majority” has a particular value in political discourse. That value is zero, but still, a value all the same,

    It’s like the idea that Romney lost because conservatives ‘stayed home’. Yeah. Because people as opposed to Obama as most conservatives are would totally do that. People crazy enough to stand up and cheer for Herman Cain are somehow not crazy enough to vote for Mitt Romney. Or was he not crazy *enough* for them. I forget. Or I remember but I don’t understand. Something.

    Hell, I’m willing to come out and say that *nobody* ‘stays home’ on elections. Nobody. Everybody who was going to vote does so. In our winner-take-all, no-real-mechanism-for- no-confidence votes system, nobody is sufficiently poop-pants about their party’s own disappointing candidate to not vote for him.

    Explanations that Our Guy lost because such-and-such demographic failed to pull their weight have a fundamentally failure-ish, loser-ish quality to them. It’s like blaming the media: Something clearly intended to make you feel better than which has the feel of actually describing reality.

    And I know this because our side did it in 2002 and 2004: You lost, you don’t know why, you don’t know how to stop losing, you have a dark feeling that you’re likely to continue losing for a while. And so your human priority #1 is to protect your own psyche so a to guard against such dark thoughts as might assail you in the small hours of the night.

  • Lori

    Hell, I’m willing to come out and say that *nobody* ‘stays home’ on elections. Nobody. Everybody who was going to vote does so. In our winner-take-all, no-real-mechanism-for- no-confidence votes system, nobody is sufficiently poop-pants about their party’s own disappointing
    candidate to not vote for him.

    If this was true you’d expect voter turn out to be the same in every presidential election, but it’s not. There are marginal voters who turn out some elections and not others.

  • Jamoche

    Ah, the “lurkers support me in email” argument.

  • J_Enigma32

    And since the Silent Majority is mostly older White men, any rising they do is going to be with the help of Cialis.

  • Hth

    He doesn’t actually have a plan in mind for this “backlash.” He’s just hoping the threat of Dire Consequences Yet to Be Named will scare us into silence.

  • http://music.satellitereboot.com/ Matt S

    Bad photoshop incoming.

  • http://flickr.com/photos/sedary_raymaker/ Naked Bunny with a Whip

    Perfect. Even matches his tie.

  • http://music.satellitereboot.com/ Matt S

    Hah! I wasn’t even looking at the tie, but you’re right. That is awesome.

  • general_apathy

    And your choice of faces is excellent, too. :D

  • http://music.satellitereboot.com/ Matt S

    Thanks! It seemed more appropriate than the generic smiley ones. :)

  • FearlessSon

    HE CAN LEG PRESS OVER TWO-THOUSAND!?

  • http://music.satellitereboot.com/ Matt S

    aaand I nearly shot iced coffee out my nose at this. Perfection.

  • http://flickr.com/photos/sedary_raymaker/ Naked Bunny with a Whip

    *guffaw*

    I’m so glad I didn’t see this comment at work.

  • J_Enigma32

    This wins *all* the Internetz.

  • http://apocalypsereview.wordpress.com/ Invisible Neutrino

    Actually IIRC someone pointed out all the ways Pat Robertson was totally cheating at that leg press.

  • http://algol.wordpress.com/ SororAyin

    I can’t tell….Is he trying to give the evil eye, or avert it?

  • Turcano

    Avert it. That’s that the corna is supposed to do.

  • http://shiftercat.livejournal.com/ ShifterCat

    With his hand in that position, I can’t help but picture him about to throw the horns and start headbanging.

  • FearlessSon
  • SisterCoyote

    Chik-Fil-A actually backpedaled like crazy (quietly, though, to be fair) on their stance once it started to cost them. If you’re interested in that whole debacle, though, and you’re one of those folks who likes to stand up to the idea of a Biblical Family, I recommend checking out Fred’s Chick-Fil-A Biblical Family of the Day series! You might enjoy it.

  • themunck

    They did? How so, exactly? I could use some schadenfreude at the moment.

  • SisterCoyote
  • themunck

    Oh yeah, that’s the stuff..*content sigh*
    Thank you :)

  • http://anonsam.wordpress.com/ AnonymousSam

    If by “backpedaled” you mean “made noises about being contrite and mending their ways and continued to donate to anti-gay groups while their owner continued to make disparaging remarks about homosexuality,” then yes, they have backpedaled.

  • themunck

    *decingly less content sigh* And there goes that nice feeling again. Oh well, was good while it lasted.

  • http://apocalypsereview.wordpress.com/ Invisible Neutrino

    There must be some kind of record for the amount of flip-flops on the matter undertaken by CFA.

  • SisterCoyote

    Oh, damn it all.

  • The_L1985

    “The current attempt to crucify Orson Scott Card”

    Nobody’s trying to do that. Ender’s Game frankly can’t not do well. However, in his later books, Card effectively crucifies himself. He seems to think that everybody would be homosexual if there were no ban on it, which is nonsense on the face of it. Everybody doesn’t skydive. Everybody doesn’t walk to the store. Everybody doesn’t make scrapbooks. But somehow if it were condoned by society, everybody would just go around having sex with people of the same gender as themselves? Gimme a break.

  • Jamoche

    Well, Disney thought the Lone Ranger couldn’t not do well, either. The claims are that one reason is that the target audience was unfamiliar with the character; I would not be surprised if that was true of Ender’s Game as well. Sure, it does resonate strongly with people who first read it as a teenager, but in absolute terms how many of those people overlap with the movie-going public?

  • aunursa

    Well, Disney thought the Lone Ranger [would] do well

    Strange. Why would they think that taking a mid-20th century American icon and inverting it so that Kemo Sabe is the sidekick, and casting the soldiers as the ruthless villains and the Indians as the poor, completely innocent victims — why would they think that such a formula would produce a blockbuster?

  • http://blog.trenchcoatsoft.com Ross

    I believe that the actual “formula” they had in mind was “Let’s put Johnny Depp in it and have him Johnny Depp at the audience for a few hours”

    Presumably they were already committed by the time Dark Shadows came out.

  • Emcee, cubed

    As a die-hard fan of the original series, I had major problems with the Dark Shadows movie. Johnny Depp…wasn’t one of them. In the sense of considering the movie an attempted love letter to the series, Depp was actually the most successful at this, practically channeling Jonathan Frid’s acting style pretty darn well. There’s a bit when Barnabas first arrives at Collinwood and is describing the materials that were used to build the house. I believe the monologue came straight out of one of the original episodes, and he did it perfectly. The single biggest issue I had was the script. And most of the other actors other than Depp and Pfiffer. Including HBC, who I usually like. She was atrocious, surpassed only in her awfulness by the girl who played Carolyn. Yeah, it was bad. But Depp was one of the few things I liked.

  • Lori

    What the hell did you eat for lunch? The mega asshat combo with extra asshat sauce at Butthead Hut?

  • aunursa

    You’re projecting again.

  • SisterCoyote

    Er, no, you’re kind of being a jerk the last couple threads.

  • aunursa

    Offering a perspective that conflicts with the general consensus = being a jerk.

    Got it.

  • Lori

    No aunursa, I was noticing that you were going through another one of your idiotic combative phases and that you said something really shitty in a rather shitty sort of way.

  • FearlessSon

    What my girlfriend has observed in Card’s writing is that he tends to push the message that monogamous hetero-marriage and lots of children is the ideal for… well, everyone, in his opinion. She points out that this is a very orthodox kind of Mormon value showing through, which is understandable given his background.

    What I find jarring about his writing though, is that I find that a person’s capacity for imagination tends to be inversely related to their tendency toward bigotry, and Card is one of those rare people who can be both very imaginative and very bigoted at the same time. Credit where credit is due, Card shows that he can actually get inside the head of characters who do not share his faith or values and write them convincingly (unlike for example, LaHay and Jenkins,) even making good examples of their arguments and decisions about why they choose the values they do.

    But the moment their values come into conflict with Card’s values about the heteronormative ideal family, those other values lose. Always. Either they “convert” their values in a character-jarring way, or get brushed out of the story. Then Card goes on to do a lot of that heteronormative crusading in real life, as opposed to just twisting fiction around the message. It kind of takes me aback that he can “get it” and then not at least “agree to disagree” on it.

  • Alix

    …Never read Card’s fiction (ran into his online column first, and it put me off), and I don’t often say this, but what you describe makes him sound like someone who really seriously can’t let himself think about homosexuality without overthrowing his own sense of himself. :/

  • FearlessSon

    I was a fan of his writing for quite a while, but rarely read more than one or two of his series all the way through, due to what some of his fans (myself included) joked was the “Card Curse.” Being that he tends to write series that start out really gripping and interesting, but then after a book or three tend to go downhill, and get less enjoyable. This usually correlates with his values starting to feel increasingly forced in the narrative.

    I eventually gave up on trying to read his stuff because I had gotten tired of being disappointed when I got emotionally invested in it. I even read a few of his essays online, which were interesting, but this was “back in the day” before the possibility of gay marriage was as high profile as it is now. When I got wind of the kind of stuff he was writing about gay marriage, I felt a bit betrayed and it really sealed me from going back and giving him another shot.

  • Alix

    I always feel kind of bad saying that I won’t read him ’cause of his politics, because there are plenty of other people with nasty views who I read and even enjoy. (Hello, Lovecraft!) But, like, I don’t know. I guess it’s ’cause with almost all of them, I came to their fiction first and either sussed out their views from fiction I otherwise enjoyed or ran across other info on them later. I just can’t bring myself to start with Card, I guess because I feel like he’s already used up my good faith.

    Maybe that’s hypocritical, but I have too much new stuff to read anyway. :/

  • http://flickr.com/photos/sedary_raymaker/ Naked Bunny with a Whip

    I dunno. Comparing someone long dead to someone who is working actively, today, to force his loathsome politics onto others by force of law feels a bit apples-and-oranges to me. Imagine how silly it would sound for NOM to declare a boycott of H. G. Wells for his socialist views.

  • Alix

    Fair point, and it makes me feel a bit better. I’ve just … had that thrown in my face a lot, when I say I won’t read [x] modern writer ’cause of their views. “But this other thing you read is problematic!”

    Sigh.

  • http://flickr.com/photos/sedary_raymaker/ Naked Bunny with a Whip

    They’re trying to derail the discussion by dragging in irrelevant comparison to put you on the defensive, I’m guessing. Like “danallison” bringing up Lori’s lack of condemnation for Harrison Ford on the Tolstoy thread.

    When someone resorts to that sort of tactic, they have essentially given up defending their point. They are simply thrashing around to drag you into the hole with them.

  • Alix

    Well, depends on the discussion. It comes up a lot in various discussions on literature and entertainment in general that I get into, especially when the topic is actually problematic entertainment and how we navigate that.

    Otherwise, yes, I agree with you. I’m just … tired of it. I have to pare down my reading list somehow, and if I choose to do so based on politics, who the fuck cares? We’re talking my entertainment reading here, not anything earth-shattering. :/

  • http://flickr.com/photos/sedary_raymaker/ Naked Bunny with a Whip

    Well, if it’s any consolation, I’ve been told that Ender’s Game is popular more because it’s a nerd revenge fantasy than because it’s a particularly well-written book. I never got around to reading it myself, however, and I finally gave away my copy of the book years ago after I found out about Card’s bigotry.

  • Emcee, cubed

    I never made it past the first chapter or so, because I found it to be a bunch of self-reverential ridiculousness written by someone who likes to hear himself talk. (or see himself write? Never know how to say this…) Of course, I felt the same about The Fellowship of the Ring, so take that for what it’s worth.

  • Alix

    Heh. I only got through The Two Towers ’cause the only thing I’d packed to read on a cross-country train trip was that trilogy. I’d actually made it through Fellowship before embarking, but oh my god TT is a slog.

    But I have been informed that I am not a real Tolkien fan, since my favorite book was the Silmarillion and I’ve yet to actually finish The Hobbit. So.

  • Alix

    I went through a period where I felt very strongly that I had to read all the classics – fantasy, sci-fi, general classics. That lasted all of a year before I realized how much boring stuff I was forcing myself to read (not knocking anyone who likes the stuff I hated – just not my thing) and how many other books I actually wanted to read I’d had to put on the back burner.

    There’s sort of … not guilt, but a lingering sense of wistful obligation, that makes me feel I ought to at least read Ender’s Game, but over and above it being a Card book it just doesn’t really strike my fancy. :/

  • http://flickr.com/photos/sedary_raymaker/ Naked Bunny with a Whip

    Yeah, I get that bug every few years. But it turns out the Classics can be quite a slog for someone with my tastes and my distressingly slow reading speed.

  • dpolicar

    Leaving the politics out of it, EG strikes me as one of those books it’s good to read as an early adolescent (the chronological age associated with this varies) but which doesn’t keep up with one as one matures.

  • http://anonsam.wordpress.com/ AnonymousSam

    A-but-but-but… they routinely do this. :p

  • http://flickr.com/photos/sedary_raymaker/ Naked Bunny with a Whip

    Is NOM the group that calls for boycotts that everyone ignores, then declares themselves victorious a few weeks later after everyone laughs at them and makes their target even more popular? Or is that One Million Moms? Or maybe both. It’s hard to keep these groups straight, if you’ll pardon the expression.

  • Alix

    It’s hard to keep these groups straight

    …I admit it, I laughed.

  • Emcee, cubed

    One Million Moms does the boycott thing, though NOM often supports it. Of course, we know little about OMM, since they are really little more than a facebook page. Seriously, NOM was once a major force, spearheading numerous campaigns around the country, and now 30 or so states have anti-marriage amendments, a large part because of their efforts. Only recently have they been losing ground and are becoming irrelevant. OMM, on the other hand, has been a joke since the beginning.

  • MarkTemporis

    HPL is dead and isn’t directly financially supported by your enjoyment of his work. OSC is alive and is supported so.

  • Alix

    True.

  • MarkTemporis

    As a longtime student of HPL and member of an ethnic group he literally turned into monsters in his work (Polynesians = Deep Ones), I get the distinct impression that were he alive, you could actually change his mind about some of his more retrograde opinions. As an atheist, he’d be more responsive to appeals to reason, and his racism was more ignorance than anything else — he was an ardent anti-semite right up until he fell in love and married a Jew, after all.

  • caryjamesbond

    I’ve always gotten the impression that Lovecraft’s racism was born more out of a lack of mental health than anything else. If his letters and personal relationships are any indication, he was a very depressed and isolated man. Being in that position can lead to some very twisted thoughts about the world and the people in it.

    Particularly when you compare him with other contemporaries like Robert E. Howard, and their more “Jolly good being white and anglo, wot wot, thank god I’m not a wog” sort of racism. Lovecraft’s was more virulent, but in a weird, lashing-out sort of way.

  • MarkTemporis

    Depressed and isolated, but still intellectually curious, and to me that’s the key to still being able to change and improve one’s self.

  • http://shiftercat.livejournal.com/ ShifterCat

    What Naked Bunny said. HPL was incredibly racist, but we have no reason to believe that anyone currently selling his books, or any Lovecraft-themed items, is supporting a racist cause. We can spend our money with a clear conscience.

    Also, this: http://thinkprogress.org/alyssa/2013/02/21/1619481/an-ethical-guide-to-consuming-content-created-by-awful-people-like-orson-scott-card/

  • Alix

    Thanks for the link! That’s a good article.

  • http://apocalypsereview.wordpress.com/ Invisible Neutrino

    Between the “Card Curse” and his shitty behavior, I refuse to read anything but “Ender’s Game”.

    V fgvyy ernyyl, ernyyl yvxr gur Znmre Enpxunz erirny, nf jryy nf Raqre’f ernyvmngvba gung ur npghnyyl sbhtug gur Ohttref.

  • Ima Pseudonym

    I devoured Ender’s Game in high school. Speaker for the Dead and Xenocide followed, and then Children of the Mind. All great books, and they encouraged me to dabble in science fiction myself.

    It’s not always a good idea to know very much about your heroes. They sometimes tend to have feet of clay. Discovering Card’s true views was…unpleasant, to say the least. The same was true with James P. Hogan.

  • http://anonsam.wordpress.com/ AnonymousSam

    And Brandon Sanderson. I remain saddened that his ethos seem to be based around “Well, my churches teaches that it’s wrong, so I guess I have no choice but to believe it’s wrong.”

  • http://apocalypsereview.wordpress.com/ Invisible Neutrino

    Frankly, I’ll take Brandon Sanderson’s benign neglect of the issue over Orson Scott Card’s regular cycles of flaming assholishness.

  • http://anonsam.wordpress.com/ AnonymousSam

    That’s not benign neglect. He donates to the Mormon church, and we know how influential that was in California.

  • http://apocalypsereview.wordpress.com/ Invisible Neutrino

    So do lots of Mormons. I don’t count their socially-obligatory tithing system as a black mark against Sanderson so much as his use of his author pulpit. In OSC’s case he uses it to bully and berate QUILTBAG people. In Sanderson’s case he’s positively enlightened compared to OSC.

  • http://anonsam.wordpress.com/ AnonymousSam

    By comparison, I suppose, but I’m still not particularly thrilled to know that I indirectly contributed to the passing of Proposition 8 in California.

  • http://blog.trenchcoatsoft.com Ross

    Name one person who has lost their job in the united states for being a chrisitan. Name one person who has been placed on trial for “deviating from political correctness”. Put up or shut up.

  • http://shiftercat.livejournal.com/ ShifterCat

    You’re so right! Here in Canada, we’ve had same-sex marriage for eight years now, and you wouldn’t believe how many people have lost their jobs or been jailed for not toeing the gay agenda line! Christians are harassed in the streets, and…

    Wait, no. None of that actually happened.

  • themunck

    Silly ShifterCat. You’re Canadians, so you’re all just a bunch of corrupt demons anyway. Any Real, True Christian in Canada had been fired long before same-sex marriage was allowed.

  • J_Enigma32

    ANY deviation from political correctness results in a show trial and a scapegoating

    *queues up world’s smallest violin*

    Translation: Waaaaah! People call me out for being an ignorant bigot *pouty face*

    The Soviet Union thought it was on history’s right side; turns out instead that history’s garbage dump is growing daily.

    “As long as they pretend to pay us, we will pretend to work” – Modern America, summed up by a Soviet quote.

    It never died. It just jumped the Bering Strait and renamed itself “Capitalism”. And it’s still on the wrong side of history. Problem being it may just be the thing that destroys history; past, present, and future, for our species.

    The current attempt to crucify Orson Scott Card will accelerate the
    backlash, and like Chik-Fil-A, his film will do boffo backlash-based box
    office

    Translation: Waaaaah! People call my buddies out for being an ignorant bigot *pouty face*

  • Fanraeth

    I doubt very much that the Bible-clutching, gay-hating whackjobs that flocked to Chik-Fil-A’s defense have even heard of Orson Scott Card, much less Ender’s Game. He’s alienated the scifi/fantasy fandoms by being a raging douchecanoe and they’re fighting back.

  • Bruce Gottesman

    As I understand it, Martin Luther started out seemingly as a friend to the Jews – writing an essay entitled “Jesus Christ was Born a Jew” or something like that. He condemned the poor treatment Jews had experienced at the hands of Christians. However, his pleas for better treatment of Jews was predicated on his belief that the only thing preventing Jews from converting en masse to Christianity was this poor treatment, and if Christians were nice to Jews, the Jews would presumably “see the light”. When that didn’t happen, Luther changed his tune, and then wrote a bunch of stuff like what Rachel Held Evans wrote about.

  • The_L1985

    Somehow that makes it even worse.

  • FearlessSon

    It is like Fred once pointed out, one of the unfortunate messages in Left Behind seems to be, “We love the Jews! As long as they stop being Jews.”

  • Hth

    I’ve never heard of Will Campbell, but that quote at the end of the ET article is aces. “Jesus, goddammit, Jesus!”

  • LL

    What is amusing is how very thin-skinned and whiny “anti” people are. They vomit forth the most repellent opinions about a wide variety of people (the majority of people, really, when you include poor people, non-white people, gay people, feminists, atheists, non-Christians). They broadcast it on TV and radio, disseminate it in print and on the internet (including copious unsolicited emails to innocent friends, family and coworkers), yap about their opinions to anyone who will listen, sparing nobody’s feelings or sensitivities.

    But when the rest of us simply observe that these people are assholes, all of a sudden, they’re being “crucified.” Which suggests that they need to be reminded of the actual definition of the word “crucified” (since they’re so familiar with Jesus, you’d think they’d know it already, but I guess not).

    I’ve always disliked drama queening and using the most extreme words to describe very commonplace things, like when someone claims to be “starving” (when they’re merely hungry) or “exhausted” (when the word “tired” will suffice). So obviously, I find the holy drama queens particularly off-putting.

    They would garner less ridicule if they’d stop comparing themselves to the guy who was actually crucified, like, for reals, on a real cross and everything. The guy they claim to worship and whose words they purport to follow.

  • Daniel

    To be fair, Jesus never had to put up with knowing he was powerless to stop something he thought was gross going on independently of him, somewhere he couldn’t see, between people he didn’t know. That’s real suffering. Crucifixion’s a doddle.

  • http://apocalypsereview.wordpress.com/ Invisible Neutrino

    Tangentially related to boogeymanism among the political right:

    Iran has been “getting the Bomb in 5 years” every year since 1984.

  • aunursa

    Kinda like the left’s boogeyman: we’ve been reaching the “point of no return” for global warming for several years now.

  • Rhubarbarian82
  • aunursa

    I regret that I fail to recognize your point. Is it that we have reached the point of no return?

  • Lori

    What do you think “point of no return” means?

  • Dragoness Eclectic

    A classic album by Kansas.

  • MarkTemporis

    I apologize to anyone affected by that disaster, but that fire picture is BEAUTIFUL.

  • Dragoness Eclectic

    Western wildfire. They have them every year this time of year. What has this to do with the conversation?

  • Lori

    Not all wildfires are created equal and I suspect you aren’t dumb enough to think they are.

  • Alix

    We get hurricanes ’round my area every year, too. (More or less. Up here, the remains, usually.) That doesn’t mean that, oh, the amount and intensity of those storms hasn’t changed (both have) and aren’t linked to climate change (going theory says probably!).

    Just because something has happened in the past, even regularly, even frequently, doesn’t mean that there hasn’t been significant change in some part of their nature.

  • themunck

    “We will bomb Iran” is a lot more concrete than a “point of no return”, though. Is it the point where can no longer avoid widespread devastation? Where we can no longer avoid the ice caps melting? Where we can no longer survive as a species?
    I also have an issue with calling it the “left’s boogeyman”. Internationally, many right-wing factions* now accept the reality of global warming, and unlike Iran’s bombing (or lack thereof), has consequences that are more visible day for day.
    —-
    * Case in point, back during COP-15, the politician I kept hearing the most positive predictions from, and who kept urging for an agreement? Connie Hedegaard. From the conservative party.

    P.S. Disqus? Please stop adding paragraph breaks in the middle of my typing? I know you’re trying to help, but it’s really disorientating.

  • Alix

    Disqus keeps deleting paragraph breaks when I type. It is goddamn annoying.

  • Daniel

    It deletes entire pages of text that I write. Be grateful I’m too lazy to retype it. And too butterfly brained to remember what I wrote, else I’d be clogging this place up like beans in a u bend.

  • P J Evans

    Insurance companies believe it’s real.

  • reynard61

    Insurance companies are now part of the Vast Left-wing Conspiracy. It was in last week’s “Things I now believe as part of my membership in The Tribe” memo. You *did* get your copy, didn’t you?

  • Lori

    Among other things, the hottest 12 years on record have been in the last 15 years. What exactly do you think reaching the point of no return on climate change looks like?

  • aunursa

    Among other things, the hottest 12 years on record have been in the last 15 years.

    So then have we passed the point of no return?

    What exactly do you think reaching the point of no return on climate change looks like?

    I don’t know what it looks like. Similar to the Iran nuclear bomb timeline, the point of no return timeline keeps changing. Or so I am told.

  • Lori

    So you have no idea what it looks like, but you’re sure we haven’t passed it and are at least implying that the whole thing is BS? Brilliant.

  • http://flickr.com/photos/sedary_raymaker/ Naked Bunny with a Whip

    several years 30 years

    science the left

    scientific consensus warmongering rhetoric

    the past the future

    But yeah, aside from those minor points, an excellent counterexample, as usual.

  • http://apocalypsereview.wordpress.com/ Invisible Neutrino

    Yes, yes, they are totally 100% exactly equivalent phenomena

    OH MY GOD I CANNOT BELIEVE YOU SERIOUSLY TRIED THAT KIND OF FALSE EQUIVALENCE

    http://i.imgur.com/Wi2hMXE.gif

  • Will Fitzgerald

    I’m sure others will recommend this, but Brother to a Dragonfly is a book I am sure you will like.

  • GDwarf

    Hah, yes, the magnificent seven. Of course that’d be the followup to the samurai.

    On point three: I’m reading a book on the history of houses in the UK and it mentions in passing that a non-zero number of priests preached against potatoes when they were first imported because, and I can just see them grinning smugly as they scored their point, they are nowhere mentioned in the Bible and therefore must be wrong. I can only imagine what knowledge of the duck-billed platypus would do to such a mind.

  • Veylon

    There’s an amazingly long list of things that are taken for granted by conservatives today, but were ranted against by conservatives as some form of demonic back then. Forks, steam engines, the printing press, chess clubs, literature, the English-language Bible, liturgical Latin, etc.

    Remember that no matter how conservative a fellow might seem, there’s always an even more conservative to chuck rocks at him for being too progressive. It can be fun to tear to tear into someone wailing about the unnaturalness of today by tearing into the unnaturalness of their cherished childhood.

  • http://shiftercat.livejournal.com/ ShifterCat

    I read that European clergy railed against the use of anaesthetics during childbirth, because the pain was Eve’s punishment. Then Queen Victoria asked for (and received) ether during one of her births, and praised it to the skies. British clergy, at least, had to STFU.

  • Carl Oscar Isaacson

    I had the good fortune to meet Will Campbell in the late 1980’s when he came to Memphis State University to deliver a lecture. He resembled the Preacher “Will B. Done” from Doug Marlette’s comic strip – because Marlette modeled his Preacher on Campbell. He was wonderfully strange, the breed of Southern Baptist I came to respect during my time in the south. I’d recommend Brother to a Dragonfly as the place to start.


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