1. “Here is what paleontologists most want to know about Tyrannosaurus rex.” This is part of why the 6-year-old me would have loved the Internet.
2. Kimberly Knight gets blunt: “Stop saying ‘homosexual lifestyle’“:
You are addicted to a lie. You are addicted to a myth that relegates your neighbor to sub-human and a second class citizen. You are addicted to the comfort of your own dysfunction.
My lifestyle, my life, my marriage will NOT destroy yours or anyone else’s.
3. Halloween brought us another annual crop of evangelical “Hell Houses,” and another annual crop of funny and insightful commentary on them, including:
• T.F. Charlton visited one in Temple, Texas, and reflected on “Hell Houses and the Gender Politics of the Religious Right.”
• Harmon Leon volunteered with on in Cedar Hill, Texas — the same one featured in George Ratliff’s documentary — and wrote about it for Vice in “The Best Little Hell House in Texas.” “First, I’m assigned to the lesbian-suicide room,” he writes. “My job is to lead groups from the sex-trafficking area to a high school scene being enacted from behind a piece of yellow caution tape.” You know, church.
• And (via Republic of Gilead), Punk Torah has the funny story of “Two Jews Visit an Evangelical Christian Hell House.” That one takes place in Marietta, Georgia, which is apparently a lot like Texas. The account of their visit isn’t as interesting as the reflections afterward — including the brutally frank suggestion that next year’s Hell House should include an Anne Frank room. Phew.
4. Ed Kilgore shares my hopeful enthusiasm for the Draft David Barton for U.S. Senate movement. Smell the Bart-mentum!
5. Robin Parry asks “Did God create the darkness and the sea?” If you’re asking a theologian, the answer would be “Yes.” If you’re asking a creationist who believes in a literal, “inerrant” Bible, then the answer must be “No.”
6. Ari Kohen wrote this recently about President Obama: “I find it to be the case that the amount I support President Obama is directly proportional to the ongoing shenanigans of House Republicans, Tea Partiers, the shrill conservative media, garden variety racists, conspiracy theorists, and weapons wingnuts. The greater the nonsense being spewed by all those folks, the more I find myself approving of someone about whom my feelings are tepid at best.”
That sums up my feelings about the Virginia governor’s race. Ken Cuccinelli is such an odious witch-smeller and trampler of the poor that he’s put me in a position I would never have believed I would be in: I’m happy to see Terry McAuliffe about to be elected to public office.