December 15, 2017

Saturday Brunch, February 11, 2017

Hello, friends, and welcome to the weekend. Ready for some brunch? Let’s start with some lighter fare.

First, some sporting news. Congratulations to the New England Patriots for another [yawn] Super Bowl win. After the game the Patriots [yawn] were congratulated by Donald Trump. And the Falcons got a card from Hillary saying, “Welcome to my world, fellas.”

Of course, the Falcons were ahead by 25 points in the third quarter. Then their defense left with Mark Wahlberg, and the Brady Bunch came storming back. I don’t think Atlanta has been that burned since 1864.

Hey, did you know that Pope Francis sent a personalized video message in Spanish, addressing the players? The message was played on the jumbotrons in the stadium, with over 70,000 people watching.

In the video, Pope Francis said sporting events like the Super Bowl are “symbolic of peace” because it can show that it’s possible to build a “world of encounter and of peace.” He added that participation in sports teaches people to go beyond their own self-interests besides sacrifice and fidelity to rules. The Pope then invoked his blessing upon the match saying he hoped it would be a sign of peace, friendship and solidarity for the world.

Tom Brady had some fine passes in the game, but nothing like this football pass for 564,664 yards:

As you may have remembered (unless you are a man) this Tuesday is Valentine’s Day. So for our male readers, we are here to help out. Because we know you haven’t bought a present for your special someone yet, have you? So, just in time for two-day shipping, here are some actual gifts you can buy for your girl on Amazon:

  • A Quart of Wolf Urine. Because sometimes the quality of the wolf urine at Walmart is just not up to her standards, and milking the wolves yourself is too much of a hassle.
  • Uranium Ore. Men, do you want you wife to have to buy her Uranium from a van-full of sketchy Libyans in the mall parking lot? Do ya? I didn’t think so!
  • Birth Control is Sinful in the Christian Marriages and also Robbing God of Priesthood Children!! Mixing profound theology with creative grammar, this book  will remind her of her purpose in your marriage (“Keep those Priesthood Children coming!”)
  • Mr. Sniffles Egg Seperator. Just trust me on this one: she will love it!
  • A Duck Press. Are you tired of seeing her getting delicious duck juice all over the trash compactor? Now you can buy her, for a mere $2,100, a dedicated duck press. The reviews on the product mention that one should only use it on dead ducks (good to know).
  • Farting Fanny Piggy Bank. Women just love flatulence humor. And now you can get her to save money, too. Every time she drops a coin in the slot she will be rewarded!
  • Land Cruiser/Tank. Just imagine how much more effective her Black Friday shopping will be with this baby!

All right, enough of this nonsense.

After over 60 years, a new Dead Sea Scroll Cave has been discovered. This would be the 12th. Although the cave has been looted at some point, and any scrolls removed, it is still a very important find. Some manuscript scraps were found, along with six jars identical to the jars found in several of the other Qumran caves. These ceramic jars were designed to contain scrolls. There is speculation that they have also found a 13th cave, which is still sealed (and thus unlooted) which may contain scrolls.

Over 100 evangelical leaders have signed onto a letter published in a full-page ad in Wednesday’s edition of The Washington Post that signals their opposition to President Donald Trump’s moratorium on refugee resettlement. Signers included Max Lucado, Tim Keller, and Ed Stetzer

“As Christian pastors and leaders, we are deeply concerned by the recently announced moratorium on refugee resettlement. Our care for the oppressed and suffering is rooted in the call of Jesus to ‘love our neighbor as we love ourselves,'” the evangelical leaders wrote in an open letter to Trump and Vice President Mike Pence that was published on Page A18. “In the story of the Good Samaritan (Luke 10:25-37), Jesus makes it clear that our ‘neighbor’ includes the stranger and anyone fleeing persecution and violence, regardless of their faith or country.”

And then there’s this: Lifeway Christian Store will no longer sell a music CD because it includes the word “penis”.  Here is the offending lyric from rapper Sho Baraka:

I was an insecure boy who just thought he was a genius
But always pissed off, that’s because I thought with my penis
It’s all strategic, I’m just asking us the reason
Share my faith on the track, I’m just exorcising demons.

Now, to be fair, it is very difficult to rhyme with “genius”.  And Baraka says that the retailer has a double standard. Other books sold on their shelves use anatomical references. For instance, “Sheet Music,” a sex manual intended for Christian couples, contains 45 uses of the word “penis,” along with euphemisms like “Mr. Happy.”

Heterodox Academy is a coalition of 400 professors who desire to promote thought diversity and free speech. They just finished a long study on “speaker dis-invitation”, that is, where a campus speaker is not allowed to give the speech they had been invited for. This mainly occurs for political reasons, of course. Students or faculty find the speakers viewpoints disqualify them from presenting. But what is interesting is where the dis-invitations are coming from. The study noted that

…”from 2000 to 2009, speaker disinvitation attempts from the left of the speaker and from the right of the speaker were roughly equal.”

“Yet, from 2010 onward there is a noticeable increase in disinvitations attempts from the left of the speaker, relative to disinvitation attempts from the right of the speaker.”

“When disinvitation attempts are unsuccessful, moderate and substantial event disruptions are almost exclusively from the left of the speaker.”

Surprised?

Who says the New York Times doesn’t get or care about religion? Well, researching for this column, I went to their “Religion and Belief” archives, and found a whopping one whole article for the month of February, and that article really wasn’t about religion at all (it chronicled Steve Bannon’s respect for an  Italian political philosopher).  Apparently “all the news that’s fit to print” does not include something so obscure and rare as religious practice.

Wanna see an 8K time-lapse of the seasons in Norway? Trust me, you do.

Wednesday was National Kite Flying Day. Yes, that’s right, February 8 is the day we are encouraged to got out and fly a kite. Isn’t this like having National Snowball Fight Day on July 20th? Trump keeps talking about fixing America, right? START HERE, Donald!

Robert F, take note. The Enterprise-Tocsin, a weekly newspaper based in Indianola, Miss., has been turning some of its police reports into haiku. Why? There is no “why” in Haiku, silly. Here are some examples; others can be found on their twitter feed.

Driving one-twenty
In wrong lane, running from cops
Will this end safely?

Ice machine open
Many quarters disappear
Cold drinks ill-gotten.

Domestic dispute
Quickly escalates Sunday
Raw meat strewn on floor.

Sosnovka, a small village in Siberia, had no church. Resident Alexander Batyokhtin fixed that. At least until spring. Alexnder spent nearly two months building a village church entirely out of snow. He worked on the chapel every day, even when temperatures plunged below minus 22 degrees Fahrenheit, and used 424 cubic feet of snow to make it. The video takes less than a minute:

You REALLY don’t want to view these pictures of Spring fashion trends for men. Just . . . don’t.

87 Million for “Wrongful Births”? The Sunday Times reports the National Health Service paid that amount to more than 16 families in the past five years after a High Court judge ruled that doctors had been negligent in their cases.

Most of the cases involved problems with antenatal screening and doctors’ failure to detect abnormalities or inform parents about the risks of their baby having a disability. All of the cases said they would have had abortions if they had known about their child’s disabilities before birth. The claims included children with Down syndrome, microcephaly and a wide range of other conditions, according to the reports.

The Christian Institute reports more about one of the cases:

The mother had undergone ten ultrasounds during the course of her pregnancy, but two doctors were found to have failed to carry out their duties correctly in two of them.

The couple’s daughter is now eight years old and has microcephaly, which affects the size of her head.

Her mother would have aborted her if she was aware of the condition, but says she loves her deeply now.

“But…but… Jesus wants me to be wealthy…” A unemployed Lakeland, Florida, man faces a five-year prison sentence and a fine of up to $250,000 after making a $7 billion fraudulent wire transfer because Jesus Christ chose him to be wealthy, according to court documents.  The defendent, John Haskew, argued that Jesus Christ created wealth for everyone. Using this scheme, Haskew believed that he could obtain the wealth “that Jesus Christ created for him and that belonged to him.” . The article notes that Haskew’s excuse earned him several eye rolls from law enforcement authorities, who apparently had never heard of Creflo Dollar.

I found out this week I have a disease. Or sin. Or social condition. I’m not really sure how it’s supposed to be classified. And you may have it also. It’s called, “Amatonormativity”. It’s symptom? The person with Amatonormativity feels that romantic relationships should primarily be between only two people at a time. Or, as Carrie Jenkins helpfully explains in The Week:

Amatonormativity is a name for the attitude that privileges lives based around a focal monogamous romantic relationship. What gets called “romantic” isn’t just about classification; it’s about marking out those relationships and lives we value most…

Our ideals of “romantic” love regulate not just our expectations about sex but also our conceptions of family and the nature of parenthood.

Ultimately, what we call “romantic” is a philosophical issue that touches on the core of who we (think we) are, and what we value. I believe that the “romantic-ness” of romantic love is largely socially constructed, and as such malleable. We collectively write the “script” that determines the shape of the privileged (“romantic”) relationship style. This script has changed, and will continue to change.

As you may sense, this “privileging” of monogamy bothers Jenkins greatly:

We must get beyond this. We need to question the limits we have placed on what counts as a “romantic” relationship. Freedom to love — the right to choose one’s own relationships without fear, shame or secrecy — is critical, not just for individuals but for us all collectively. Non-conformity is the mechanism that reshapes the social construct to better represent who we are, and who we want to be. Instead of forcing our relationships to conform to what society thinks love is, we could force the image of love to conform to the realities of our relationships.

But it won’t be easy. If the love of a polyamorous triad is seen as “romantic” and hence as valuable as the love of a monogamous couple, then the triad should have the same social and legal privileges as the couple. How could we deny them the right to be co-parents? How could we defend the legal or financial benefits of monogamous marriage, or the lack of legal recourse for anyone fired for being polyamorous? These are the privileges by which we signal to monogamous couples and nuclear family units that theirs are the most socially valuable social configurations.

The battle for same-sex marriage is so 2014. Now we are moving onto bigger (literally) things. After all, if we re-define marriage to include “polyamorous triads” by what logic should we stop at the “triad” part?   What could go wrong?

Well, friends, that’s it for this week. I leave you with Variations on a Shaker Hymn, part of Aaron Copeland’s Appalachian Spring. Enjoy!

 

Comments

  1. First! And re the disinvitation story, it fits my narrative, I’ll admit that. Maybe progressive movements would benefit from cultivating an ‘inner spaciousness’, to enable them/us to better reaction with wisdom, poise, and discernment.

    • React

    • It partly fits my narrative. Since I assume that most university faculty and students are liberal to left in political positioning, and have been for about sixty to seventy years, I’m actually surprised that the disinvitations from 2000 to 2009 were roughly equal from both left and right; that part doesn’t fit my narrative.

      • Adam Tauno Williams says:

        It corresponds to the rise of the Identity Left at universities; it is big especially on the west coast – Berkeley is its epicenter.

        Mostly spoiled children who wouldn’t know a real issue if it walked up and hit them with a stick. Akin to the Libertarians on the Right; all moral platitudes, no substantive commentary.

        • So, up until the last few years, universities, which are largely liberal in politics, have done a pretty good job of allowing representatives from the right to speak on campus, that is, in allowing academic freedom. Though I’m disappointed by the recent breakdown that you’ve attributed to the rise of the Identity Left, I’m proud as a progressive that these institutions have done such a good job in upholding academic freedom for so many decades. I hope they are able to get back to it soon, though the polarized political atmosphere in the the country is promoting entrenchment rather than openness.

          • Have you seen what the Right has become? I wonder who defines these terms.

            • It isn’t so much who gets to define them. It’s who gets to enforce them.

            • Yes, the Right is scary these days. Also frightening is that they have empowered and energized the radical Left, who now show up at peaceful rallies wearing black masks and throwing incendiary devices. The Alt Right seems to think they would have an advantage in any street confrontations, because they have lots of guns and a gun culture; what they forget is that anybody can buy a shitload of weapons in this country in less than 24 hours, including the radical Left, because the conservative gun lobby has made it that way.

              • Burro (Mule) says:

                It will not be weapons, but training and tactics that decides the outcome of Civil War II.

                The Left has the leg up on organizing, money-raising, and media sympathy
                The Right has access to 200,000+ Iraqi/Afghan veterans, sympathy of the militarized police, and SVR training.

                I’ve been arguing for immigration reform since Bush 41, but now people immediately head straight to the most extreme positions – either full-stop Tony Blair No Borders Global Judiciary or Ethnic Cleansing.

                We need to ratchet down the rhetoric, but I don’t think wee can. We’ve been given permission to hate and it feels too good after denying it for so long.

                • Not all vets are right-leaning, never mind Alt-Right leaning. And many vets are from minority groups.

                  Pray for peace.

                  • Heather Angus says:

                    I’m a vet and a liberal. My brother is a Vietnam vet, and he’s so far left he makes me look conservative. There’s really nothing like a stint in the military to get you questioning the wisdom of your government.

                • And the list of travel-ban countries is just public relations to placate Trump’s Moslem-hating base; otherwise Saudi Arabia would be on top of it.

          • Headless Unicorn Guy says:

            Remember Rwanda.
            Tutsi or Hutu, Us or Them.

          • If I was paying 20,000 a year to a group of people I’d complain too when they gave money to racists to come insult me where I live.

    • Most christian universities just have policies in place saying that anybody who doesn’t agree with their 1,978 points of politico-religious faith cannot work or study there. So it’s exactly equal.

  2. I’m 2nd? Everyone else sleeping it off?? OSCAR!!

    ;o)

  3. Not first!

    Dano, those police report haiku are pretty prosaic.

    • Daniel Jepsen says:

      Agreed. And those were the best of the bunch. You need to help them out.

    • Headless Unicorn Guy says:

      I introduce you to the famous news-of-the-weird coplog of Northern California, the Arcata Eye:
      Through 2013: http://www.arcataeye.com/category/police-log/
      2013-present: http://www.madriverunion.com/tag/arcata-police-log/

      A small college town on the Redwood Coast just north of Eureka, Arcata is also known for a large homeless and stoner population.
      “And when they meet, it’s Happy Land!”
      — They Might be Giants, “Particle Man”
      Enjoy!

      • That’s the Alternative Press of the area. I know this because I went to college at Humboldt State… It’s been a stoner kind of place since the ’60s, but the homeless population has dramatically increased in the last decade or so. It rains a lot, but climate is otherwise mild; people don’t hassle the homeless folks, but there is also a huge lack of mental health services in norCal. When I was there, Arcata was pretty evenly divided between alternative/artistic types and quiet, hardworking lumbermen and fishermen whose families had been there for several generations. (No, I did not partake – just handed it on to the next person. I have never smoked anything and never will.)

        Lots of people who went to HSU or otherwise headed to Humboldt County in the hippie days/daze ended up staying. One of the better known entities: Holly Yashi jewelry. I had some music classes with Yashi (Paul Lubitz).

        Dana

  4. rare lunar eclipse
    itself eclipsed
    by ordinary clouds

  5. Ideas like amatonormativity always give me second thoughts about continuing to identify myself as progressive.

    • Liberal changed to progressive which is morphing into leftism. Change for the sake of change, believing that society MUST evolve into something “higher” because what IS is insufficient.

      Robert, you are more of a liberal than progressive. This coming from a conservative (NOT “Right” or “alt-right”)/libertarian…

  6. Robert F’s position as Haiku Master remains secure. However extra points are awarded to Indianola for being unique in the world for even thinking of this, added to their existing points for being home town of B.B. King. It is possible the two are somehow connected.

    • Buying Uranium from a van full of sketchy Libiyans —— Now that does not sound demeaning does it ? Even liberals slip,up now and then !!!!!

      • Daniel Jepsen says:

        That was an attempt to reference Back to the Future

      • Well, what else can you do? Plutonium and Uranium STILL aren’t available in any corner drugstore…

        • Plutonium is a bit hard to get. But you can get U if you’d don’t want much.

          U in low concentrations is fairly easy to pick up. Just visit places like Monument Valley and scoop up some read dust. Now the U235 in this is going to be about 1/100th of the U238 and the U total is going to be fairly low. But still you’ll have some real radioactive U.

  7. Legally and logically – based on the last 40 years of judicial decisions, is there any reason for the United States to not affirm polygamy as legal and legitimate?

    • Nope. And quite a few legal experts think it’s just a matter of time before some LDS fundamentalist sect takes a crack at it, legally speaking…

      • The Jeff family perhaps?

        Remember the furor over same sex marriage and how the proponents scoffed at that argument? The argument was/is valid, and they KNEW it to be true, but because it might hinder their cause they had to besmirch those who brought it up. We all KNEW this was on its way…

        • Nope. Not at all. Remember that little thing about consent?

          Consent is a weird thing. People claim ‘the right’ do not understand consent. Yet they do, because few believe that Jesus forces his way into your heart, and even if they do, they say it in different terms.

        • Adam Tauno Williams says:

          > the proponents scoffed at that argument?

          I do not recall that. I recall them reflecting my legal/civic understanding of not caring. It did come in conversation – the response was usually “yeah, probably [shrug]”.

          Marriage law is shadow contract law; this is moving it out into the daylight – straight-up contract law – the only basis upon which The State should concern itself.

      • Headless Unicorn Guy says:

        Don’t forget the lunatic fringe of NAMBLAs (pedophilia) and Zetas (bestiality).
        https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cgptvsHHYK4

    • I suspect the legal morass though I’m not a lawyer. Marriage in the eyes of the law is a legal contract between two individuals which makes them legally one entity in certain instances (see community property states or filing a joint return for the IRS). Given that the law had gradually changed from when one party, always the man, was legally the head and the other, always the woman, was legally obliged to obey to a more equal and reciprocal arrangement, it became easy legally to have both parties be the same sex. Polygamy in most forms is more inherently unequal. Would polygamy be the traditional form of allowing one individual to have more than one such contract (i.e., a man might have multiple wives but the wives have no contractual relationship with each other) or one contract with more than one individual in it.

      Societies with legal polygamy of the first form have a different infrastructure for marriage. For instance a common one is that what a wife earns or has is hers to do with what she wants and her husband has no claim on it; however, the husband is expected to support each wife in her own household. If he divorces her without a legal cause he has to compensate her (the amount is often negotiated at the time of the marriage or set by law). The fundamentalist Mormons seem to see it as the husband having an absolute claim on the property and income of his wives. I’m not sure any society has had a legal infrastructure for the second form.

    • Adam Tauno Williams says:

      Nope. And it is a pointless fight that will get all kinds of people who like pointless fights riled up.

      What serious person cares? Not a one; of course that is my definition of “serious person” – if these fights are your hill-to-die on, you aren’t one. Not like there hasn’t been polygamy and all what not forever anyway. Put as many blanks on marriage license as you want; there is no reason to care.

  8. Haikus are easy,
    but sometimes they don’t make sense.
    Refrigerator.

  9. Let’s just say that Pope Francis and I disagree about the Super Bowl, and leave it at that.

  10. Just saying that Love is a triad. Making Love conform to the realities of our relationships sounds like the definition religion to us. As opposed to say conforming to the realities of the truth of actual Love. And we would go further and say the realities of the beatitudes, or the fruits of the spirit, or if you would, the seven virtues are blessings to any relationship. And if we would be honest, these are not instinctual to the realities of most human relationships.

  11. Klasie Kraalogies says:

    So someone who would more often classify left and/or progressive than not, the dis-invitation thing as well as the amatonormativity thing is frustrating. Then again, it is likely that the latter comes from a Professor of Philosophy at UBC, and thus someone who is already at the margins of any relevance, and has to shock to be noticed.

    I guess a lot of the people that come here share this frustration that the current political/philosophical labels/categories are becoming increasingly frustrating or non-applicable.

    • Yes. The political apple cart has been upended, and the apples are still rolling…

    • Daniel Jepsen says:

      Yes, I agree, it is frustrating. I used to consider myself a moderate-conservative, but now find the conservative movement to have been taken over by the nationalists and the crazies. I have no idea what I am any more.

      • Klasie Kraalogies says:

        I have considered using the term Rational Liberal, but other Liberals might not like it… 🙂 . Or Rational-Pragmatic-Humanist Liberal. Ie not so much ideologically driven, and with actions based on facts and science and reason and outcomes and humanity….

      • When one side pushes too hard then the other MUST push back. After all of the leftist egalitarian thought flying around the past few years this result was not unexpected…except by leftists themselves. Soon it will again shift in the other direction…

        • Soon it will again shift in the other direction…

          ….or the tight-rope walker will lose balance, and fall off the rope into the net-less dark below….

        • Oh bullcrap. That persecution complex the right has had for DECADES is getting really tiring. The obstructionist horsecrap just in the last 8 years alone…

          • Obstructionist tactics of the right: Trump will be able to appoint over 100 federal judges, because the conservaties in Congress obstructed so many of Obama’s nominations. 100 judges!

    • Changing the subject – Klasie, I have *The Burning Hell* and *If Footmen Tire You, What Will Horses Do?* queued up on YouTube today. Since your post earlier this week first brought these films to my attention, I will hold you responsible for any psychic damage they cause me. 😉

    • Adam Tauno Williams says:

      The Identity Left is very frustrating. These are the same people who clog Internet discussions and show up at meetings to express their FEELINGS about all manner of things. They actually stand in the way of accomplishing many of the goals they claim to have.

      Housing Affordability is a *BIG* deal here. They show up, toss their feelings about… never seem to learn anything about policy, legal restrictions, local vs. state codes… they just want to be Angry – it is Virtue Signaling and Moral Vanity.

      If you explain to them that in 1988 the **STATE** legislature passed Act 226 in which section 123.411 forbid Rent Control – – – so there is no point in yelling at city leaders that we need Rent Control… pause…. blink… right back at it. And you’ll then tell the same person the same thing a few months later – they will think this is new information. So do they genuinely care about these issues?

      Facts should not be permitted to get in the way of Outrage – there is nothing Left/Right or Conservative/Progressive about that. It is sadly Human.

      • Burro (Mule) says:

        Is there anything any concerned parties could do to alleviate the housing situation? When you have too much fiat money chasing too few investment opportunities in the Real Economy, speculation bubbles are inevitable. I would assume the land under the housing stock is skyrocketing in value in urban areas.

        I know here in Etlenna we’re back to where we were in 2006 – construction companies throwing up cheeseboard palaces on every corner and real estate investment firms snapping them up with easy ZIRP money, then furiously scrambling to find credit-worthy buyers or lessees.

        Haven’t we been here before? Somebody’s GOTTA be shorting this sh*t.

        • Adam Tauno Williams says:

          > too few investment opportunities in the Real Economy,

          The principle problem is Euclidean Zoning, followed by ineffective transportation policy and infrastructure. Yes, we know how to fix it. Some places have – Denver, for example, has improving housing to income rations.

          But it is a **HUGE** political lift. There are many vested interested each with sees some bit of the solution not in their interests. And you have those in the Conservative side who will oppose any change to transportation policy – on ideological grounds. And you have those on the Left [akin to the Identity Left] who will oppose zoning reform – on ideological grounds. So you are left unable to assemble a constituency able to perform the lift.

          > … furiously scrambling to find credit-worthy buyers …

          We do not have that situation at all. We are dealing with a rapidly expanding economy with extremely low employment matched up with a built-environment which is frozen by regulation and vested interest.

  12. Microcephaly = brain underdeveloped, often severely so. The consequences are pretty devastating
    https://www.cdc.gov/ncbddd/birthdefects/microcephaly.html

    • Numo,
      Is your comment a justification of sorts in support of extinguishing this type of life? If so, is there a line you draw that does go too far in the discontinuation of a life? This is an honest question, no snark intended.

      If we can justify extinguishing this life – as heart breaking and challenging as this circumstance presents – where are you personally in the line you draw? We all have lines. Where is yours? And maybe more importantly – why? Again, no snark, just genuine interest.

      • The cynic in me says of course it’s easy to love someone once they are here and you are taking care of them. Everyone has something in them which you can find to love.

        The greater question is…would it have been ultimately more loving for them to not have been born? Is their right to life that great?

        Even greater question…are equal opportunities worthless if equal outcomes aren’t also possible?

        • > “The greater question is.. Is their right to life that great?”

          Is our right to take it from them even greater?
          And if it is, wouldn’t the “equal outcomes” supposition be somewhat disingenuos?

          • Define “take it from them”?

            • And, in addition, we are not talking about a right held by all of us together, but by individual women. The question is: Is it our right to decide for the woman what she should do, or is it her right to make the decision?

        • Patrick Kyle says:

          At last the Truth…. the loving thing is to kill. Thanks StuartB. Not often you guys make it so plain.

          Robert F Please give that tired ‘It’s her body so let her kill the baby.’ rhetoric a rest.

      • Heather Angus says:

        They give me second thoughts about continuing to identify as human.

      • Heather Angus says:
      • I posted so that people who,looked @ the info. @ my link could see that this is about WAY more than an infant having a “small head.” A whole lot of these kids whose moms contracted Zika are going to require so much more medical care than insurance will ever pay for. Their parents are always going to be run to the ragged edge, emotionally and per their own health, and if they have other children, those children will not necessarily get the amount of love, care and attention that *they* deserve. Who steps in when the parents get sick, or things become overwhelming? What happens if the parents are unable to care for a severely-profoundly handicapped child?

        These are all things that are never addressed by the vast majority of people who are anti-abortion. I’m not exactly “pro-abortion” myself, but unless/until people are willing to grapple with the actual realities of these kinds of situations, I’m not hopeful that anyone will get the help, medical care etc. needed, because making this about abortion is missing the point.

        What happens to the severely disabled when their parents getmolder and, ultimately, can no longer care for them, die, etc.? If the parents are as wealthy as B De Vos, maybe the disabled people will receive adequate physical care. But who is THAT rich?

        Seriously, please stop and think about these things.

  13. Beautiful video. A nice way to greet the morning.

    *

    “Over 100 evangelical leaders have signed onto a letter…”

    And have just now realized what Trump’s positions are? He never made any secret of his point of view and his intentions. “But that’s not what we meant!” is the ineffectual cry of every sheep that’s ever been shorn.

    *

    Why are we so surprised when the “Left” turns out to be as mindless and irrational as the “Right”? Could it be that wisdom lies in, shall we say…another “direction”?

    • Maybe now they’re starting to take him literally and seriously.

    • Adam Tauno Williams says:

      >> 100 evangelical leaders

      I find the notion of “Evangelical Leaders” questionable. It is demonstrable -that ~80% of their ‘followers’ went the other way – that these are not their Leaders.

      Leaders are people others follow. If nobody is following – you are not one. If you are chasing people trying to get them to listen to you … you certainly are not one. You need to move to a different tribe.

    • To be fair to those particular leaders, do you know if they supported Trump during the election? There were several who were never Trumpers. And even if they did, how is it productive now to criticize them for speaking out against one of Trump policies? It seems that you would be happy they aren’t just being yes men

      • Headless Unicorn Guy says:

        Comment on Wartburg Watch a couple weeks ago was that a LOT of Dallas-Fort Worth Megas delivered the vote for Trump. And that said Lead Megapastors were taking their private jets to the Inaguration (and rewards).

  14. For those of us in Charleston the gator has moved onto our local version of the Onion: http://fauxcountrynews.com/orange-gator-doesnt-see-his-shadow-pumpkin-spice-season-coming-six-weeks-early/

  15. Randy Thompson says:

    So, Walmart sells wolf urine by the quart. It would be worth a trip to Walmart just to look at the bottle.
    This ish’t all that unique, though. I’ve seen bottles of coyote urine at Agway. As with the wolf urine, it evidently serves to keep deer from eating your hostas.

    However, the real question is, how on earth do you get enough wolf urine to be able to bottle it by the quart and sell it? I’d like to know how this is done. What poor soul has to assemble the wolves and then get them to. . .well, cooperate?

  16. I don’t know where I found this this morning, maybe it was here, but it’s an important read.

    https://www.theatlantic.com/politics/archive/2017/02/conservative-christians-disagreement-trump/516132/

    • I just read this. There was also an article in our local paper about pastors being afraid to speak their minds due to the factions in their congregations. They were appalled by the current governmental actions that they felt were anti-Biblical (The aliens shall be to you as citizens, and shall also be allotted an inheritance. Zech. or Jesus said to him, ‘If you would be perfect, go, sell what you possess and give to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven; and come, follow me.’ Matt.) Although there was a pastor interviewed who couldn’t wait until the ban on politics and churches is broken, then he could say all the conservative stuff he wanted to and laud Trump and “tell it like it is.”

  17. Marcus Johnson says:

    Actually, amatonormativity doesn’t just mean that romantic relationships should be monogamous instead of polyamorous. The -normativity part means that the term refers to a worldview that believes monogamy is also the ultimate goal for everyone. Jenkins specifically used the term to criticize those who wouldn’t accept her polyamorous identity, but monogamy and polyamory don’t exist in a vacuumed binary.

    My first thought goes to all those adult never-married singles in your church (every one has a few, it seems). In their 30s, happy with their career and friends and Netflix and cat, yet somehow can’t seem to take two steps in their church without some well-meaning person asking when they are going to get married, or if they’re seeing someone, or if they’re interested in this one person they know, etc. Amatonormativity puts those never-married folks on the borderlands and considers their sexual identity to be abnormal, when they could be perfectly happy being single. Think of how your church community often structures its small groups, or sermon series, or potlucks, around the concept that your adults will come into the sanctuary two by two.

    It’s also worth pointing out that this worldview crosses over with a lot of biases and assumptions about gender, age, sexual orientation, and ability.

    So, yeah, it’s a real thing. If you’re thinking folks are weird for not wanting to be married, and for not seeming to be interested in marriage, maybe they’re not the ones with the problem or deficiency. Just saying…

    • Marcus, maybe some of these well-meaning folks might have been able to get Jesus straightened out.

      • Which Jesus needs talking to? The Jesus who apparently spent all his time talking about “family values” and sexual ethics? Or the Jesus in the Gospels, who spent 10+ times more effort talking about money and loving ones enemies than He did sex, and even encouraged family conflict if said family members inhibited His disciples from following Him?

    • Daniel Jepsen says:

      I didn’t see her as talking about singleness at all. The first sentence was about “open relationships”. The second paragraph begins, “I’ve been polyamorous for many years”. She focuses on this the rest of the way.

      • Marcus Johnson says:

        That’s what she focuses on, in the same way that folks who talk about heteronormativity often focuses on same-sex marriage, and a lot of folks who talk about neurotypical behavior often focus on autism. However, the definitions for all three basically say, “This is what is considered normal, and therefore accepted, and everything outside of that definition is abnormal and unacceptable.” Monogamous, heterosexual, child-bearing, marital relationships are considered “normal” in an amatonormative lens; the same lens that rejects polyamory also rejects singleness. Singleness and polyamory are at different ends of the spectrum but, make no mistake; monogamous, heterosexual, child-bearing marital relationships are still the center.

  18. Men’s fashion? men’s fashion? Mr. Happy is going to go fly a kite now.