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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I dreamed that my soul rose unexpectedly

Michele Bachmann still treats “Left Behind” as a how-to manual for politics. White Christians in Alabama are fine with disenfranchising black voters, but not with extramarital affairs. “I’m going to rewrite the ‘Pina Colada Song’ as a Palm Sunday story,” somebody thought, and did. And Billy Sunday wasn’t much of a hitter, but he once stole 82 bases in a single season. [Read more…]

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I guess we’ll have to wait and see

Let’s relax and take a deep breath with an almost completely Trump-free post, featuring the music of the Old 97’s, a new documentary on Reinhold Niebuhr, and the sense of recognition that comes from realizing that comedian Pete Holmes is a Gordon College grad and a recovering evangelical (that explains a lot). [Read more…]

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‘Where I come from’ we claim universal generalities as our peculiar virtues

“Folks ’round here love their families,” the Very Nice man says. “We value hard work and honesty.” And the Very Nice man seems Very Nice, until you realize that what he’s actually saying is that he and his community imagine that other people in other places do NOT love their families and that “those people” do NOT value hard work and honesty. Once you realize this is what they want and need to believe about everyone else, the Very Nice man and his Very Nice community no longer seem quite so nice. [Read more…]

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Monday Monday tekel upharsin

If you wrote something that was half in poetry and half in prose, you’d probably have a good reason why you made that choice. You’d mean it to mean something. The same was probably true for whoever wrote the book of Joel, but what that choice meant for them is, to us, a bit of a mystery. (Plus: Suggestions wanted for a First Testament iTunes playlist.) [Read more…]

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When trouble comes to town

Some Thursday night odds-and-ends, including: Why the Cubs’ win will provoke an identity crisis for their fans; Beyonce at the CMAs; Amy Grant singing from a hymnal is insufficiently Christian, “bookstore” claims; and yet more reasons why Ken Ham had to leave Australia to promote young-Earth creationism. [Read more…]

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This is where we draw the line

“(We Don’t Need No) Color Code,” is a raucous, righteous middle finger directed at Bob Jones University from Steve Taylor’s 1984 “Meltdown” album. It’s a fun, foot-stompin’ anti-racism song. The album’s producer, a long-time CCM recording whiz, even joins in on the call-and-response chorus. That guy? Turns out he was also a member of the KKK who eventually went to prison for his role in an attack on a Nashville synagogue. [Read more…]

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The past is gone but something might be found to take its place

For a change of pace, here’s a post about something other than Donald Trump. Let’s talk about Sketch Erickson. Longtime readers here may remember some of my stories about Sketch. He was a regular on the white-evangelical/fundamentalist speaking circuit back in the 1970s and ’80s, who spoke to parents and to “young people” about the [Read More…]

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