LBCF, No. 133: ‘Mystery Dance’

Rayford’s newfound resolve to evangelize his daughter seems to have less to do with her eternal fate than it does with his own determination to exculpate himself, to fulfill his obligation to “force her” to choose and be done with it. As ever, it’s all about him. This is what the pressure to evangelize is often about. [Read more…]

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Spell C-A-L-H-O-U-N across the steel grey sky

Donald Trump’s comments on the Civil War are surprisingly ignorant, even when accounting for the fact that this is Donald Trump and his boundless ignorance should no longer be surprising. Historians have responded to the president’s confused statement, but I’m left longing for an alternate-history novel that reimagines the Jackson Era without Jackson. That could be fun. [Read more…]

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Sunday favorites

Jesus said to them, “I will ask you one question; answer me, and I will tell you by what authority I do these things. Did the Civil Rights Movement of Martin come from heaven, or was it of human origin? Answer me.” [Read more…]

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Mulder, it’s me

Please note that monkey-wrenching a despicably white nationalist Trump initiative with phone calls is not the paramount duty of patriots and neighbors at this time. We shouldn’t be making calls like that until after we’ve called our senators and representatives and flooded those phone-lines with sincere, passionately civil statements to hold those members of Congress accountable for holding Trump accountable. But this particular monkey wrench is available, and the machine needs to be stopped. [Read more…]

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LBCF(T), No. 132: ‘The sticking-place’

Rayford Steele gets a thrill from the idea that he is living in “the most cataclysmic period in the history of the world.” That thrill — which plays a big role in the allure of Rapture-mania Christianity — comes from the idea that this makes him special, that it makes his life more meaningful than it might otherwise seem. That attitude only makes sense from an extremely self-centered perspective: Sure, the apocalypse means widespread suffering and death, but it makes MY life more significant, so on balance that’s a plus. [Read more…]

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I can’t forget the glamour

Today is the centennial of the birth of Ella Fitzgerald, and thus a day worth celebrating. Also: The Temple of Knowledge; the trash-can-as-trash problem; literal navel-gazing with creationists; and Orrin Hatch refers to Native Americans as “far-left special interests.” [Read more…]

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LBCF, No. 131: ‘7 pages, 6 phone calls’

Bad writing entails a failure to convey or communicate whatever it is that the writer is trying to express. LaHaye & Jenkins have failed at something prior to and more fundamental than that. They began by portraying one whole world — the post-Event world following the Rapture, and then they abruptly and completely abandoned it for a different one, a different kind of world, in which the next set of preordained events from their End Times Checklist could be imagined. [Read more…]

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Smart people saying smart things (4.20.17)

Wise words from Te-Nehisi Coates, David Dark, Fred Rogers, Ijeoma Oluo (and her brother), Molly Worthen, and from a former president who used to offer hope and inspiration at annual Easter prayer breakfasts. [Read more…]

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