The National Prayer Breakfast is bad for the nation, bad for prayer, and bad for breakfast

President Abraham Lincoln never once attended the National Prayer Breakfast. (Creative Commons photo by Jeff Kubina.)

I do not much care for the National Prayer Breakfast. This is an event at which people display their patriotism by showing their disdain for the Constitution. It’s an event at which people display their piety by contradicting the words of Jesus in the Gospels. That makes the National Prayer Breakfast bad for the nation and bad for prayer. [Read more...]

If our dreams fall like bombs from the blue

HickeyRevelation

Please join me in reading Buzzfeed’s profile of “men’s rights” champion Paul Elam. American conservatives do not like journalists and aid-workers. Why it’s dangerous to say “secular” when you actually mean “profane.” Plus more bad religious comic books, Captain Jack, and what “Caddyshack” can teach us about American history. [Read more...]

The Bible wasn’t written to provide source material for inspirational posters

MountUpBaby

Open a Bible at random and poke a finger arbitrarily at any verse and you’re just as likely to encounter something bizarre, bewildering or bloody as you are to find something sweet and soporific. The Bible is not a collection of harmless, uplifting platitudes. It is not an almanac of pleasant sayings suitable for cross-stitching. It is not an endless catalog of slogans to be screened onto T-shirts or recited by the local Chamber of Commerce for the purpose of civic pacification. [Read more...]

Swearing on a stack of Bibles: Pennsylvania’s stupid, unconstitutional law

LeviticusTat

Pennsylvania’s law requiring witnesses to swear on the Christian Bible is blatantly unconstitutional — a clear violation of the First Amendment. But just as importantly, this law is simply stupid. Asking Muslims or Jews or atheists to swear on the Christian Bible undermines the whole intent of such rituals, which is to solemnize the oath by referencing something the witnesses themselves regard with reverence. [Read more...]

In ‘Mark of the Beast’ case, EEOC defends the religious liberty to belief it thereby proves to be factually untrue

Theology

Religious liberty, if it is ever to mean anything at all, must include the freedom to be wrong. It cannot matter, legally, whether or not a religious belief is orthodox, or coherent, or part of a longstanding established tradition. Protecting religious liberty means protecting the right to believe in the implausible, the idiosyncratic, the offensive, the stupid, the factually insupportable, the demonstrably false. The EEOC just proved that Beverly Butcher’s “Bible prophecy” beliefs are wrong — and that he has the right to be wrong. [Read more...]

You can fight City Hall (but if you take them to court, they get lawyers, too)

CityHall

Fighting City Hall doesn’t automatically make you the Good Guy. But it doesn’t automatically make you the Bad Guy, either. Which kind of story is this one? Which kind of lawsuit is this one? Is City Hall the Good Guy or the Bad Guy in this case? Well, here’s what happened. [Read more...]

The case of the missing letter and the poisoning of the well

Warning: The denizens of urban coastal areas are trying to force Christianity to the margins of society.

Pascal-Emmanuel Gobry is not pleased with my forthright translation of his column at The Week. That’s understandable. After all, if he had wanted to be forthright, to own his words and his implications, and to make his nasty accusations directly and honestly, he would have done so himself. [Read more...]

Pascal-Emmanuel Gobry displays some sleazy ethics in his lecture on Christian ethics

KingRustin

Writing for The Week, Gobry’s “Why so many Christians won’t back down on gay marriage” is a steaming pile of passive-aggressive insinuation. His preferred method of argument appears to be to avoid lying by direct assertion, opting instead to lie by passing reference to assumed “facts” that are actually unsupportable fabrications containing nasty accusations. To save time, I’ll only highlight three such lies from the article. [Read more...]


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