Friday, May 26

Religious liberals agree to fail to agree...

If you're coming here from Mike's Blog Roundup, welcome. I got yer panties right here. xoxo

Comments reveal my first troll. Don't miss it.


eternity panties

The "Christian Left" is getting more publicity these days.

I'm a Christian. I'm a leftie. But more and more I see that the separation of Church and State has to apply to my own heart, as well. I absolutely had to laugh at the fact that 1200 delegates to the "Network of Spiritual Progressives" conference had difficulty coming up with a cohesive and united policy statement. Liberal Baptist minister (and there are plenty, believe it or not) Tony Campolo complained, "The thing about the left is that they want everybody to feel good." So those delegates who have a "problem" with Biblical text but not "spirituality" clashed, albeit gently, with their more churchy brethren.


The Democrats have been issuing bland unifying meaningless platforms my whole life. The idea that a group of progressives could not make a statement about honesty in government, respect for the environment, an end to this horribly unjust war, and a commitment to help the poor, without getting uppity about whether or if "God" or "The Bible" is part of the equation, is just silly.

The righteous blog Uncommon Sense summarizes the Christian Left perspective rather nicely in this post:

I suspect that Jesus is getting a bit tired of hearing that the only things he cares about are stopping abortion and keeping the gays down. If he cared all that much about either one, I suspect he would have mentioned them at some point. He didn't. He did have quite a lot to say about demonstrating compassion for the poor. I haven't heard Bros. Falwell, Robertson, Perkins or Dobson say much about that lately. Or, ever.

The religious left's failure to come up with some practical solutions and instead to dwell in the land of feel-good 'spiritual' masturbation is completely embarrassing, but probably just as well. We really don't need to get an endorsement from Jesus in order to do the right thing, and more importantly, as Gary Wills and Andrew Sullivan [both subscription, dammit] have recently pointed out, if we really believe what Jesus supposedly says in Scripture, we are terribly unlikely to get one. Blue Gal is not the only Christian who thinks, as Sullivan points out, "that Christianity should not get too close to the corrupting allure of government power." Render unto Caesar, and all that shit.

We can't become the left-wing equivalent of this guy, and why would we want to?

The biggest sin of the religious right is their theologically incorrect insistence that God is on their side. God forbid the left should begin to make the same mistake. And don't get me started on the whole "the founding fathers wanted America to be a Christian nation." That is not only theologically incorrect, it is historically incorrect. Not mincing words, it's bullshit. [See a great write-up on this here.]

And intelligent design is neither. Look, I "created" my children with Mr. Blue Gal, and yet they're still evolving every other minute. Stop limiting God's creation to what happened a gobzillion years ago and get over it.

On the topic of faith and democracy, I love what Hendrik Hertzberg said over at the New Yorker, commenting on that letter to Bush from Iran's leader Mahmoud Ahmadinejad (emphasis mine):

Much of Ahmadinejad's letter is devoted to religious hectoring, culminating in an appeal to Bush'’s faith. The Iranian President writes that he has "been told that Your Excellency follows the teachings of Jesus (Peace Be Upon Him) and believes in the divine promise of the rule of the righteous on Earth." One can imagine an American President responding that he believes in the rule of the people, righteous and unrighteous alike, exercised through democratic institutions. It's a little harder to imagine that response from this particular American President. But one can dream.

The good news: Last I heard Roy Moore, Alabama's Ten Commandments candidate for governor, is down 44 points. Baptists down here finally see through him, and they don't appreciate being used. I think we'll all be surprised at the CHRISTIAN backlash, particularly the Abramoff/Christian Coalition/casino money/Republican lovefest. There are some rather pissed off Christians in this state (bless their hearts.)

Now, if both sides could just see a little more gray rather than black and white on the abortion thing...but more on that in another post. I'm sorry, you devoted pro-choice, anti-Christian lefties, if you want the White House, we have to at least take Tennessee. You're not gonna do that by spitting on the Bible and arguing for abortion on demand for minors. We can and we must separate Church and State. That does not mean people of faith can't vote that faith if they choose, and that we should not solicit their support and contribution of their religious views to the discussion.

Some of us may just have to hold our noses and love Jesus, or at least find a way to court his followers.

Other excellent, non-subscription resources (Thanks, Mike):

Michelle Goldberg on Christian Nationalism

Goldberg's book is also the current read at the TPM Cafe book club.

Tristero on Christianism, Islamism, etc.

Side note: They've always been on the tip of my tongue (in cheek), but now they're back on the blog: Conservatives for American Values is back, thank the Lord! (In the wonderful world of CFAV, I'm not supposed to thank God but let a man do it for me, you know, because of Eve.)


  1. Maybe this is just a case of loving the libral, but hating libralism?

    Nah, that can't be right.

    I have to say in all honesty that anyone who can reconcile their religion with some of the asshats who "practice" it has my nomination for sainthood. It was way too hard for me.

  2. I forgot.

    I also left a comment with the Conservatives for American values.

    You're my inspiration!

  3. Why is everybody always trying to nominate me for sainthood? You, Mr. Blue Gal's ex-wife...

    That's why I was such a potty mouth yesterday, WDS. Throw them off the trail...

    You're better off trusting in your own omnipotence, Poobah, then trying to understand so-called Christian Asshats. welcome to the cfav funhouse. It actually taxes my creativity even more than my own blog.

  4. I am a democrat but I am not a liberal. I thought I was a liberal when I got a computer and came online about 8 years ago. then I began reading the liberal internet and slowly the truth dawned.

    Do you think that rightwingers are stupid if they watch Fox Network and believe everything they hear?
    Are issues not a lot more complex than what they are presented to be on Fox?

    What makes you think that the liberals are any different than the rightwing when it comes to the "talking points" they put out? Or do you think that Howard Dean has suddenly actually been converted and seen the light? He must have found jesus.

    Do you think that the actual concern of the liberals is seperation of church and state?

    Then why do they not attempt to get Jews out of government?

    There are atheists and other non-Christian Americans and seperation of church and state is a valid issue. Surely we southern people who have been in this nation since its founding and who are descendents of the founding Fathers do not need lectures about a seperation of church and state do we?

    Do you ever wonder why the people who are concerned about seperation of chruch and state are non-critical supporters of Israel which is nothing but a Jewish state?

    These attacks upon Christianity are about a lot more than seperation of church and state.

    Since you claim to be intellectual I sugest that you read this article

    Liberals and neo-cons are flip sides of the same coin and neither represents the interests of rank and file democrats and republicans or the interests of America.

    Christians have always been in every branch of our government. Prayer has always been said in our schools. Christian prayer opens every session of Congress. This has always been a christian nation with 85% today claiming to be Christian.

    When you attempt to overthrow something that is that significant about our government and our country you should think very carefully about what will replace it.

    Do you like what the neo-cons are doing to America? Do you realize what will happen to America in ten years when we have from 20 to 120 new immigrants depending upon whose numbers you believe? Do you know what will happen to our culture, traditions, heritage, religion and our middle class?

    During the last election Al Gore was leading in polls among democrats. Elites/liberals in the party told him he would get no support or money from the party and forced him to drop out. Al Gore represents the old ruling class.

    Then the party foist John Kerry off on us and he is a liberal who represented no opposition to the neo-cons and Bush on the very issue that had outraged democrats and that was the illegal invasion of iraq and the rearrangment of the middle east for a Greater Israel. Kerry represents the new would be ruling elites.

    Bill Kristol did everything he could to get Clinton/Gore to take out Saddam and they refused.

    Rahm Emanuel is the democrat who will choose the next nominees for the democratic party.

    Hillary clinton is a flaming Zionist. She wants to be POTUS and she knows that won't happen without Jewish support. Ask Al Gore. Has Al Gore changed his stance against our middle east policies? Have the democratic elites shifted their positions?

    Either party may hide behind Jesus but clearly neither the neo-cons nor the liberals care about Jesus nor do they care about his followers. by using Jesus Christianity has come under attack and even people in other parts of the world have nothing good to say about American Christians. The neo-cons knew this would happen. Liberals didn't miss a beat.

    If you attacked Jews the way Michell Goldberg attacks Christians you would be called a bigot. She and others malign Christians and distort their beliefs and make them appear like monsters. Christians have the same beliefs today that they have had for over 200 years.

    I am from the south too and I know these people and they are not like Goldberg and others of her ilk portray them to be. What do they wish to put in place of Christianity?

    If I didn't know Billy and Franklin Graham and had only Michell Goldberg to tell me about them I would think that Franklin Graham was Adolph Hitler. I have heard the liberals describe revival meetings and Christain young people as "nazi youth".

    This is a political campaign against American values, traditions, religion, and history. Its not about a seperation of church and state. You better be certain about what is going to replace Christian values before you become so cocksure and gungho.

    Since when have democrats and republicans been defined as Christian and non-Christian? At what point in our history would anyone ever dreamed of saying that one party was Christian and the other not? These definitions serve a purpose and you had better figure out what that is.

    Certainly you can say that it is common knowledge that christians can be democrats and that makes common sense. but that is not how things are presented and that is not how they are defined and that is not how they play out because liberals control the talking points and they have their agenda.

    Liberals and neo-cons, fox network and liberal internet are flip sides of the same coin. rightwing dittoheads and leftwing dittoheads are flip sides of the same coin.

    I'm just glad your intellectual enough to appreciate what I'm telling you.

  5. i must have missed something in my history classes because there was no where that i could find that said that the founding fathers were christian. free masons, yes- but not christians. not only that, but they deliberately set up our government to avoid one religion hijacking the whole thing because they did not want what happened in europe- religious persecution- to happen here(hence the first amendment). so, perhaps people aren't going after and attacking christianity as much as they want you all to leave the bible at home when you take office. yes, your belief system is part of who you are- that's a no brainer- but when you live in a secular democracy, you have to set that aside in public office or in your professional life. do what you want in your private life- but if you are elected to represent a constituency- you don't have the luxery of thinking with your beliefs. i agree that the left wing of the democratic party is as much a lunatic fringe as the right. i think that we, as a nation, need to start working our way back to the middle or nothing will get done and we may have a civil war. i think that part of the problem is the christian zealots who continue to be used by the right to impose their will on the country. it is easy to whip these people into a frenzy- just bring up the usual- gays, abortions, flag burning, etc and they will be out there voting the rhetoric. i can't believe that they aren't tired of being campaign pawns- but i guess they are too busy trying to convert the rest of america to notice. fyi christian zealots- not everyone believes and it can't be forced- much like democracy.

  6. Awesome post! What a great read. I wish I could stay up later to read all the comments. I'll be back to do that.

    I really liked God's Politics, btw.

    Gotta get me one of those thongs!

  7. From Shakespeare's Sister:
    "The Lord Jesus spoke to me and he said 'There's something I want you to know,'" said Dozier... "'Charlie Crist will be the next governor of the state of Florida.' ...I introduce to you, as the Lord Jesus has said, the next governor of the state of Florida, Charlie Crist."

    Is it possible Dozier misinterpreted the big guy's message? He said Crist would be the next governor, but he didn't say that's a good thing.

    People have been attaching their own meanings to what this guy supposedly said and did for a couple of millennia now. You'd think that if he actually spoke to you directly you'd ask for a little clarification.

  8. Being a simple unsophisticated guy with a simple mind I also may just be full of crap, but fools walk in where angels fear to tread, so here goes.
    Since we humans are endowed with the gift of freedom of thought it’s natural that the political spectrum extends to both the extreme right and the extreme left, and everything in between. Both extremes amount to bases for the righties and the lefties, but I believe they both make a mistake by seeing how far they can go in their extreme positions when, in most elections, it’s those closer to the middle that decide winners and losers. If the extremists would, instead, gravitate toward the middle our people would be more cohesive and more likely to reach a consensus, I believe, and a great deal of the bitterness between those on the extremes would become a thing of the past. I think that would be better for us as a nation of united citizens.

  9. Coming off of listening to Terry Gross interview Michael Farris, orthodox Christian and founder of Patrick Henry college (which generated 7% of the recent batch of White House interns (!))...

    He made it very clear that the Founding Fathers (caps intented) deliberately set out to create a FREE nation, not a Christian nation.

    And then he spent the rest of the interview (trying to) justify his school's mission to create orthodox Christian lobbyists.

    In his argument, the whole point of democratic debate and lobbying is to 'win' one for your ideological team... to win a vote means that you've convinced a group of your position, or you have a cricical mass of people who believe as you do.

    And yet...
    Where does the idea of a FREE, not Christian, nation fit in there?
    Just because he has his set of values doesn't mean that I (or my fictional children, especially girl-children) believe as he does. Where does the leap of logic in his argument exist that a Christian 'mandate' would justify the creation of a Christian (and therefore, by definition, non-FREE, non-plural) nation?

    Call me a liberal (please), but if our nation was founded on the very idea of religious freedom and (god forbid) plurality, how can we possibly institute policies on moral issues that only reflect one religion's values?

    And why on EARTH is Congress opened with a Christian prayer????!!!

    Another great moment in the interview: apropos gay marriage, he claims that democracy involves "asking the people to sanction something", and then says "Well, if they're asking the people to sanction it, I'm one of the people, and I don't sanction it." Oh, right. One guy's against it, so I guess we'd better call it off. So sorry. Forgot to ask the right guy, I guess.
    [To his credit, he did argue against 'civil unions' as a compromise. I'm with him on that one- if they're really going to get equality on this issue, they should be entitled to exactly the same level of 'service.'
    So tell you what -when Boyhood and I tie the knot, we won't get 'married', we'll become a 'civil unit', because neither of us are Christians and we don't need to use that word that so many right-wing Christians are so protective of.]

    Coffee-induced rant. Thanks for the venue, BG, and SEE YOU NEXT WEEK!

  10. Hey BG: Nice work flushing out another batshit crazy Dem in the form of July Canute. That was one wild ride. I think I get credit for reading the whole cranky spiel, especially considering that I'm the spelling Nazi, I didn't scream out loud once! (OK, I DID wince, but that only serves as evidence that I'm relaxing my standards and attempting not to be such an asshole about this)

    I loved this post. You ARE a saint. Deal with it. And, I have it on very good authority that certain saints (Theresa of Avilla, Stephen and Cecelia) all let the "f" word fly from time to time.

  11. July Canute,

    "Christians have the same beliefs today that they have had for over 200 years."

    Are you missing a few years there or is it just me? Christianity (and all its bullshit) has been around a lot longer than 200 years!
    Enough said about religion and its jingoisms, and uses that reflect an intalerable form of some odd weakness, not unlike patriotism!

    You ask what will happen to our culture when the immigrants invade? Culture? Don't make me laugh! In the name of God, Iraq, one of the oldest cultures known to man, was obliterated right along with its pristine culture!
    How does that make you feel? Are you okay with it since they are not "Christian" or white anglo-saxon or they're non-American, which is the same, I suppose, as UnAmerican!?

    Who gives a flying monkey's ass what religion or non-religion or what the hell ever a human might or might not be? When flesh, Christian or otherwise, is blown to smithereens it matters not, they all bleed and fly apart in the same manner!

    You blew more smoke up the chimney with your ignorant rant than most do in a lifetime! Sure, some of your points about Hillary and the left are certainly valid, but infused with your tendancy to lop in the world as some anti-Christian bullshit (pro-Jew, Israel withstanding of course), was preposterous! You reeked of hubris!

    Wow. Take a breather and calm your rhetoric!

    (That last sentence was to myself, by the way.)


  12. Anonymous12:45 PM

    Oh dahlink you got your first wingnut troll! Your blog has finally arrived. The fact that Mrs. Stalin can't spell just makes it more delicious. I notice that the rest of your commenters (all repeat offenders) can spell. How did you manage that?

    "Your" such an intellectual. And a saint. xoxoxo

  13. Holy Mackerel! I take my kids out for a morning of errands and all hell breaks loose! Andy, honey, I only "cultivate" the best commenters. The trolls, I don't feed. Threading, Poetry, Betmo, Don, Qwerty, and Karen: your brains are showing. Very sexy.

  14. Two points:
    1.) Faith and Religion are not synonymous. Faith is belief without proof. Religion concerns humanity's relationship with the powers and principles of the universe. Using these words interchangeably does a disservice to public discourse, which is prolly why the "progressive Christians" failed to reach an accord.
    2.) The Founding Fathers' level of religiosity is utterly irrelevant. Eighteenth century thinkers believed many things that we find laughable or reprehensible today. Thomas Jefferson, for instance, believed black people were inferior to white people. Progressive means embracing progress. We have made great progress in areas of science, art, literature, justice, technology and so forth. Religion is the one area where progress has eluded us. We wouldn't say, "Don't use the Internet because Thomas Jefferson didn't use it." Why, then, should we say, "Believe in Jesus because Jefferson believed in Jesus?"
    If you believe in God, then used the senses and brain that God gave you to come to your own conclusion, and dump the slavish devotion to eighteenth century belief systems.

  15. You know what's spooky? Those panties look remarkably like a goat's head.

  16. Wow. That's quite a mouthful, July.

    Got yer Jew-bashing and your immigrant-bashing all in one comment. Along with your fibs and distortions about 'merican history. Since those who have commented before me have done such a good job of smacking you down, I'll leave what they have said speak for me, a white, male, LIB'RUL descendent of some of the other people who founded this country, the folks who came over with Billy Penn. You may have heard of him. That colony he set up was intended to be a place where those of ALL faiths and creeds were welcome. Even the native people got fair treatment there, unlike some other places I could mention (most eveywhere else, actually). I'm a Christian, and your comments offend me.

    And there is no good reason for each session of Congress to open with a prayer. That's a tradition that should have been flushed a long time ago. I'm a Christian, and that prayer offends me.

    And if what Michelle Goldberg has to say offends you, perhaps it's because she's hitting too close to home. Unlike those who attack HER, she has done her homework and actually has facts (scary things, those, I know) to back up what she says.

    And I can even remember discussing the issue of prayer in schools with my folks, who both grew up in the 1930s. Neither ever said a prayer in a public school in their lives, except a silent one before a test maybe. My prayers are my business, best conducted in private. The idea of forcing anyone to pray anywhere should be offensive to anyone.

    And Franklin Graham? A great example of why so many Christians aren't so enamoured of Christianity these days. He's a bigot. He offends me.

    And if what's on television, what's being sold in most chain bookstores, and what's being packaged in most CDs passes for "culture" these days, maybe a little MORE immigration is exactly what we need.

  17. And on the subject of American Christian Taliban type stuff: Mike sent this article over. Great stuff.

  18. Agreed.

    Compromise, Compromise, Compromise.

    We have to find a way to find common ground without resorting to the same means as the Christian right.

    I know that we here on the left want to acknowledge every single fucking group that exists and sticks his/her/zim/zir hand out, but instead of being obsessed with pointing out the exception to the rule and the internalized oppression within us all, blah blah blah...

    why don't we focus on the things we do have in common, which are numerous?

    Post-modernism's day in the sun has departed. There was once a time where we all needed to be reminded of our own internalized racism, oppression, subliminal subconscious presumptions--but now it's time to evolve towards a spirit of mutual co-operation.

  19. You know how when you fill out profile forms on certain web sites, it will ask your religion, and one of the options is “spiritual but not religious.” I’m actually always looking for the “neither spiritual nor religious” choice, but never seem to find it.

    I have N-O-T-H-I-N-G against Christianity, but the whole concept of “liberal organized religion” is an interesting on to ponder. There exists a Unitarian Universalist Church just down the road from me. Often times I see their parking lot overflowing, with cars parked up and down the street as if someone was having a free garage sale. All of the cars have Kerry stickers still hanging for dear life on the bumpers, or anti-W stickers, or other random stuff like “Karma happens” or the ever classic “my other car is a broom.”

    My point is that these are obviously people seeking organized religion in some form, but are bringing their liberal/progressive (which are both synonymous now for “thinking”) values with them. I think that’s great and I absolutely love seeing the cars line the street each Saturday.

    However until I became familiar with weekly sight, I thought progressive and Christian really went together like Bush and honesty. My gay brother sang in a choir out in San Francisco called GLIDE, which is made up of ever race, color, sexual orientation, etc, and they are very well known and sign at major gigs (such as 49er’s games, Golden State Warriors games, etc), and it reinforced my idea that liberal Christianity was not only possible, it’s alive and well, occurring all over the place.

    I for one choose to live life with honor, integrity, and to it’s fullest without any guidance whatsoever from any organized religion…and until conservative Christians realize that’s possible, I always find myself at odds with the Church. Oh yeah, and until certain Catholic Priests stop molesting kids and not taking responsibility for it. That tends to not sit well with me for some odd reason.

    Oh, and I should mention – I’m the son of a former 10-year Catholic Monk. He now wears a shirt that says, “recovering Catholic.”

    Cheers and have a good weekend BG. I’m off to party my fucking ass off.

  20. Haha I just read July's post...the "liberal internet." I've heard it all now.

    Thanks for giving me a good laugh before I head out...I'll be sure to say hi to the "southerners" who set up shop in Massachusetts, thereby founding this nation.

  21. Anonymous5:18 PM

    Go betmo, go betmo, go betmo...

    Mayhaps we need t'be makin' it required readin' in th'schools. History, that is.

    july canute seems to have missed out on somethin' somewhere. What's that thing called? It's a rather abstract ideal anymore...somethin' America needs a heavy dose of? Oh, aye, that be it--reality.

  22. I never thought that Christianity adequately preached tolerance. At various points in its blood-spattered history, we've seen intolerance against Jews, Catholics and now Muslims. At no time in Christianity's history has it reconciled itself with all other religions.

    Now it's the Muslims again, so in a way, the wingnut fundies have come full circle. So is it really unreasonable that they've come under fire, lately, for their belligerent attitude toward Muslims, science, reason, gays, feminists and, recently, Jews (Yeah, it's coming out. Keep your ears to the ground. The honeymoon's over and the Catholics are next)?

    I say fuck 'em, and I say that with all due respect to you, BG, because I know you're among the...faithful, I'll charitably call them.

    But all religions, in order to survive, have to rely on dogma and demand blind faith. All organized religions are corrupt and the neocon jackals who've hijacked the bones of Christ are the perfect delineation of this. It would've been bad enough if they'd sequestered themselves to ecumenical affairs but no, that wasn't enough.

    They had to metastasize into medicine, politics, the various sciences, all because their mouth-breathing proles south of the Mason/Dixon line gave them an in by voting in Republicans who have, at the very least, the most dismal and obvious track record of not giving a shit about them.

    And what has Christ and God done for us, lately? It's given us a runaway bus on fire of an administration led by a clown with a Messianic complex who actually thinks that God told him to invade Iraq (without whispering anything in his ear about an exit strategy or a strategy for victory) and to run for President (without, also, whispering in his ear how to keep the budget balanced, the good faith of our allies and our cities to keep from sinking underwater) and a bunch of dog- and child-beating psychopaths with mysteriously unparted hair who think they know better than doctors and scientific experts.

    I have about as much use for religion as a concept and as an institution as most people do for cancer and AIDS, so you can imagine the depths of loathing and hatred I feel for those who use their bully pulpit to tell the rest of us what to do, say, think and feel.

    And it's this dictatorial predilection on their part that's the reason we have, or are supposed to have, separation (note the spelling, Judy) of church and state.

  23. It's disappointing to see how many folks are bashing the religiously Left amongst us here. Being religious, or having a religion, means you "don't think?" ALL religions have a dogma and/or require/demand "blind faith"?

    Wow. That's not my faith. And I could list all those with which I'm familiar which don't fall into those categories.

    This is obviously going to be a pointless exericse. As long as most people on the self-proclaimed Left are this hostile to anyone who claims to be "religious AND Left," then we will never come together. Which is sad. And kind of stupid. Because we're all on the same side, fighting for the same things. At least we should be.

  24. Careful Quakerdave, you're pre-empting next week's post!

    I'm actually quite forgiving of those lefties who think they hate Christianity. Funny thing is when you engage them in conversation, a great many of them think Jesus was a cool guy, some actually revere him.

    It's that the religious right has so often set the discourse that "God/Jesus equals us" that some lefties tend to believe that, and that creates the problems you describe.

    I DID bash that convention because they chose keeping their convention "comfortable" for everybody over making a statement about the poor among us. As you know discomfort is not something those of faith can shirk.

    More on the blog next week. Thanks, though. I'm so glad to have your contribution.

  25. The people at that convention deserved to be bashed, because working for social justice, working for peace, doing the hard work that needs to be done in this country, is not about being comfortable. It's about getting off our collectives asses and doing that hard work. The Jesus in whom I believe wasn't some wimpy wuss wafting about voicing platitudes. He was a man, a tough man, not a wimp.

    And if we continue to allow the RIGHT to define us by THEIR behavior, and by their words, we have indeed lost. And there is no hope for us whatsoever. Period.

    Can't wait for that next posting.

  26. This whole thread got me thinking, so I stopped my Miz July's place. I must say she does have an interesting point of view.

    I left her the following comment:

    "I've got to say July, you've got an interesting point of view.

    I can't speak for all of America, but I think people can believe in whatever religion or non-religion they want.

    Worship trees? OK with me.

    Worship a tubby, perpetually happy little dude who likes his stomach stroked? Knock yourself out.

    Worship Jesus, Muhamad, George Bush, Osama Bin Laden, or none of the above? Doesn't matter to me.

    As far as I'm concerned, you can believe anything you want, even if I think it's the stupidest load of crap I've ever heard. That is your right and I'll even defend you for it.

    However, my tollerance ends when someone else begins to impose their beliefs on me.

    Posting the Ten Commandments on every available flat surface? Not so good.

    Prayer in school? Go ahead pray away, you don't need the rest of us to join in to keep you company.

    Channeling tax dollars into religious charities? Nope.

    Teaching a religious theory in place of science. Naa. I'm not going there either.

    Tax exemptions for religions? Ditto. If I have to pay taxes,the children of Jesus, Buddah, and Abraham need to chip in their fair share too.

    For some reason, a bug seems to have crawled up your butt, and I'm not sure why. I've not heard anyone except certified asshats say anything about taking any religion's rights away. I believe they can say it, but I also believe that I don't have to believe it. I'd invite you to do the same.

    So thanks for your point of view. It's, um, interesting. I really do respect you for it. But, I also think it's awfully close to the aforementioned load of fecal material. You might want to take a few steps away."

  27. What does the ongoing, daily, constant attacks BY LIBERALS upon Christians and Christianity mean? When was the last time you saw Christians on any of the Sunday morning talk shows?

    Suppose for a moment that this Congress never sat on their hands when the Supreme court illegally gave Bush the White House. Suppose that Congress took its duties seriously and demanded that the votes be counted and the election be fair and Al Gore had become POTUS.

    Suppose that if Bush won the White House this Congress refused to illegally give the White House the power to start a war.

    Suppose that this Congress recognized the fact that we have soverign borders and that we are indeed a nation of laws.

    You have to consider the emphasis upon the Christian right in the context of what is happening and what sort of Congress that we are dealing with.

    Do you remember when the liberal internet was blaming the Christian right for our invasion of iraq? Obviously they can't do that any more but they attacked them day after day before people realized the truth. Those attacks affect people's thinking an opinions whether they were true or not. christians have been tainted.

    Why do you suppose the liberals put gay marriage to the front and center but they remain seemingly unaware that we have rounded up Arabs in a pogrom and locked them away at Gitmo without due process and tortured them? Which do you think deserves priority?

    How many times has a liberal stood before a microphone and talked about Gitmo? How many books have the Michelle Goldbergs written about Gitmo? Wouldn't you think that Jews would have taken to the streets in fear since they tell us we should remember the Nazis so it never happens again? If they come for Arabs today and nobody speaks up who might they come for tomorrow?

    How come liberals are more concerned about the welfare of Mexicans and the pretense that we have no soverign borders than they are about Gitmo?

    Why do you suppose liberals are terrified of christians who are so ignorant they think the Ten Commandments are part of the Christian religion?

    Compare which christian lobby is as powerful and influencial as AIPAC?

    How many pacs and lobbies do Christians have, jews have 126 which they formed after the Congress passed laws that would have limited the influence of AIPAC.

    If Christianity at any point in our history threatened the seperation of chruch and state then how did jews ever get any power in our government?

    Explain why we are in the middle east. did Franklin Graham get us there?

    Why are we in the middle east?

    How come nobody and I mean nobody, ever mentions the fact that we were attacked on 9-11 because of our policies toward Israel? What do you think the liberals would be saying if we were attacked on 9-11 because of Franklin Graham?

    If Christians have no right to force their beliefs on the rest of us then why are we forced to be in the middle east?

    The Arabs want to sell their oil and we want to buy it. They have no military and are not a threat to us. Why would they be. The saudis and the Bushes are friends and business partners.

    So why the constant attacks upon christians?

    Let me give you a demonstration of how spin and propaganda and smear campaigns work.

    Oh my god! I saw these really crazy people who are weird and who have weird and crazy beliefs and they are in our government and they are going to destroy us!

    They have a country in the middle east but they expect us to act like it is another state! Can you believe that! And we thought Christians were arrogant!

    These people look really crazy and they wear funny looking hats and they have dreadlocks hanging down the sides of their faces and we have film evidence of their weirdness. They stand before this big hugh wall in Israel and they sway back and forth manically and they talk to themselves and sometimes they wail and keen and moan.

    their children are like nazi youth because they go out and with tanks they bulldoze the homes of poor and defenseless people who live among them.

    On a regular basis you see things like soldiers shooting down small children til their guts fall onto the ground. I saw a pregnant woman murdered at one of these checkpoints that they force those who are different from them to go through. These things happen EVERY DAY! Why my goodness its anti-Christian! Not to mention ANTI-AMERICAN!

    My God we will be living like this if they get into our government and force their ways upon us. Our kids might end up killing these people too!

    They talk to themselves and they bang their heads against what they call a "wailing wall"! and some witnesses think they may be on drugs. Then they kiss the wall and they write things down and put the notes inside the wall as though it is going to talk back to them or something. Its crazy.

    These people like to live in constant war and killing and they have been doing this for 60 years and now they have nuclear weapons.

    If you follow these people to visit a coffee cafe or a grocery store, someone might strap a bomb onto their body and blow up the coffee cafe. It doesn't seem to bother these people because they are like really weird and they just clean up all the blood and gore and in about two hours everyone is back to drinking coffee. My god this is how they live! Like barbarians! If they get into our government they will use our money and our military to carry on this stuff!

    I'm telling you they will destroy the United States if they are allowed to get into our government and force their ways upon us. We will see the Israelization of the United States rather than the democratization of the middle east.

    These people are fundementalist maniacs and we have the facts and the research to prove it.

    Now imagine that everytime you attempt to discuss Christians, as you are discussing them now, someone spoke up and said.

    "Wait a minute! You can't talk about Christians! Christians have been perseucted down thur the ages and they were slaughtered in 1386, 1411, 1650 and hundreds of times after that. Furthermore these christians went thru Reconstruction!

    let me give you a lecture about Reconstruction and Christian persecution. If you say one thing about Christians then you are anti-christian you bigot."

    The way you are carrying out this debate is ample evidence of the power of propaganda. You are living empirical evidence of it.

    As I said before, if you are going to overthrow something that has played such a significant role in our heritage, culture, government and history you better think about what is going to replace it.

    Today we have nothing to hold us together as a nation because the white culture that we built was overthrown and replaced with multi-culturalism. As a result we have no soverign borders and the vaule of Mexican needs are the same as American interests.

    We should have trade with Cuba but the interests of Cuban elites in FL is on a level basis as the needs of America.

    It goes against the interests of the American people to be doing what we are doing in the middle east but the interests of Jews and Isarelis are treated as tho that trumps our interests.

    If you wish to overthrow Christianty you better think about what will take its place.

  28. Hey, congrats for getting linked by Mike Finn again.

  29. Anonymous12:21 PM

    i frankly don't care what rises to replace the nation's faux "christian values". The people who call themselves "christians" work to the detriment of our society. They work to write discrimination into our constitution and make women second class citizens while rich white males decide the fate of their reproduction. "christian" values in america have brought nothing to the table but to legitimize people's prejudices and cow the masses into submission.
    (some people did not file taxes this year because they are certain the rapture is coming).
    We do not need nor do we require these so called "christian" values in government. And i don't care what you replace it with. So long as it is replaced.

  30. Anonymous2:07 PM

    From the perspective of this recovering catholic; I left the church when I saw the hypocricy between what they preach and what they do. They speak of love and acceptance, then turn around and advocate for laws that discriminate against the "others". To get people to be against something, they get them to hate it first, then outlaw it second. Also, more blood has been shed in the name of religion than probably all other causes out there.
    I consider myself extremely spiritual and at the same time, extremely un-religious; as stated in an earlier comment, spriituality and religion have very little to do with each other. For me, spirituality is a chosen relationship with one's higher power, a personal relationship. Religion, to me, is to accept a human interloper in that relationship, a human who dictates what the higher power wants of us. Having seen the consequences of putting that much power in the hands of fallable humans has detracted from a religions purpose, not enhanced it.
    p.s. The Da Vinci Code is on to something......

  31. People, we do understand that July does not speak for many of us who call ourselves Christian, I hope.

    I also realize more and more why so many liberals / progressives want nothing to do with Christianity. In spite of the fact that Christian churches and the people who call them home helped give us abolition, women's suffrage, the civil rights movement, prison and mental health reform, and the anti-war movement, there are just enough raving unChristian, anti-Semitic, apparently white supremacist Christian nationalist types like July to want all of you to keep all of the rest of us at arm's length, if not further.

    Please believe me when I tell you, we're not all like this person.

  32. Anonymous7:13 PM

    btw, JULY: That book you're so fond of - you know, the BIBLE - will tell you something you either don't know or have forgotten: Jesus never called himself a "Christian." Neither did those twelve guys (and one woman, apparently) who followed him around.

    They were all JEWS. Every. Last. One.

    I have that on good authority. I read the book.

    So why all the links to anti-Semitic sites on your blog? Why all the anti-Semitism in your own writing? Why all the Jew hating?

    What was it Gandhi said?: "I like your Christ. I do not like your Christians. They are so unlike your Christ."

    Yup. But hey, what did he know? Little infidel.

  33. Oops, that was me. I prefer not to be "anonymous."

  34. I think the problem is Republicans or the Conservative Right like to think that what they should not do, should not be done by others. So will that be tea or coffee.

    The problem for Democrats, is that whilst they think: "well thats not my cup of tea, but if it works for them" - then get labelled with them

    Nice to hear (or rather see) you say that you can be a leftie & you can belive in God. Both are not mutually exclusive. And that is why I guess the metaphor of JC on the cross was: "sinners to the left of me & sinners to the right"

    PS (perspective) - who got promised paradise that same day, the one on the left or the one on the right. Or was it the one who 'recognised the errors of his ways'. Laters Q

  35. Drop in to that Unitarian Universalist Church. No creed, no dogma. Some Christians, some pagans, some atheists, all welcoming each other. Faith is personal, introspective; religion is community, interaction. Come back soon BG, Alabama needs you.

  36. Love those Unitarians: they love everybody.

  37. I seem to recall someone saying that we should, quakerdave. And I admired Friends before it was a sitcom.


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