Correction and Correlations

Well, I jumped the gun a bit. The twitter quote from Rick Warren was not about the shooting in Aurora. According to a comment left by Warren at Exploring our Matrix:

TWITTER’S limit on words allows no context for statements. A lack of contxt causes misinterpretation. So when you tweet what’s on your mind, people preassume (incorrectly) that you are talking about what’s on THEIR mind. This is a clear example. My tweet was a brief response to a question to me about SEXUAL PROMISCUITY. It had NOTHING to do with the tragedy in Colorado.! I had received this email from a dad: “Pastor Rick, my daughter told me her teacher said in class “There’s nothing wrong with sex with multiple partners! Sex is a natural, inate drive, and any attempt to limit it to one, single partner is a manmade construct.” THAT is what I was commenting on. Unfortunately, you also incorrectly presumed the context.

That’s why most of us use #hashtags or @names in order to make it clear what we’re responding to, Rick. It also helps if you don’t use tired cliches as twitter posts without explanation. But, yeah, point made, we made too many assumptions.

What I really want to know is, what was up with that teacher? Assuming that the report is accurate, most of the teachers I know would be sweating for their jobs if that came out of their mouths.

But it’s not a total loss. It created a discussion of the correlation between a country’s acceptance of evolutionary theory as it relates to the murder rate. One ofJames McGrath’s readers, K.L. Onthank, created this chart:

New American motto: Smarter than Turkey, safer that Latvia.

  • vasaroti

    I call BS. ” My tweet was a brief response to a question to me about SEXUAL PROMISCUITY. It had NOTHING to do with the tragedy in Colorado.! ” Then why didn’t he respond to a specific email by emailing his reply?

    I don’t believe any teacher would have said this, although it’s essentially correct in a biological sense. Orgies and marriage are also man-made constructs.

    • JohnMWhite

      Agreed. Responding to an email via twitter, apropos of nothing and with no context, makes no sense. I’m calling flat out lie, and he simply couldn’t take the heat generated by his insensitive and inaccurate comment.

    • Nox

      Yeah, I don’t really buy it either. Since the original tweet didn’t specifically mention Aurora, there is some possibility of misunderstanding. But this is Rick Warren we’re talking about here. We’ve already established that he’s an unreliable narrator.

      • Custador

        Honestly, I see no need to validate the man with attention either way. He’s a virus with shoes.

  • Kodie

    “preassume”? Basically saying everyone got this wrong but him. He knew what it’s about and everyone’s fault for presuming it was about something else. If he really believes it, it is an answer he applies to multiple situations, not just a moronic (and probably fictional) parent who wrote him an email to discuss the evil science and sex ed he heard from his daughter that they are teaching at her school (which may be college and not high school). What should he do about it? He should realize when students are taught they are no different than animals, they act like it. “Good” advice? Wouldn’t a parent writing to him already assume at least that much?

  • RJ

    “Assuming that the report is accurate…”

    You can’t count on wingnuts to report anything accurately. There’s always misquoting, misrepresentation, exaggeration, or downright lying involved, in order to maintain that hysterical, histrionic atmosphere they seem so addicted to.

    Most likely a student asked the teacher about the morality of people who prefer not to be monogamous and the teacher, wanting to remain neutral and non-judgmental, replied with something like “It’s a personal choice that each one of us has to make, through informed, responsible decisions. The health risks and consequences involved must also be taken into consideration.”

    And daddy turned it into “Class, tonight’s homework assignment is to have sex with as many partners as possible and write a 100-word essay about your experiences due by Monday.”

    • JohnMWhite

      I’m thinking along those lines as well, it is simply a case of exaggeration by an outraged parent who cannot handle the idea of their baby being told anything but “sex is evil”. Honesty or neutrality are, to them, permissiveness. Though I don’t know why a teacher should be sweating for their job for saying the statement as presented. It’s not like he said “student/teacher relations are a great idea”.

  • Kodie

    TWITTER’S limit on words allows no context for statements.

    Has anyone pointed out he had only used up 78 characters in that tweet? That leaves 62 to clarify.

  • Thin-ice

    Anyway, plenty of species of animals are monogamous, and there is plenty of multiple-partner human sex going on in the Old Testament, some at the behest of God.

    So even in it’s correct context, Warren’s response is BS.

  • Kodie

    There’s an xkcd for this?:

    • James F. McGrath

      Sorry, I shared it again, not spotting that you had already done so. When I saw it I thought the same thing!

  • Schaden Freud

    That chart’s really interesting. There’s a definite correlation there.

    • fred

      OK, but what about those who accept gravitational theory?

  • James F. McGrath