December 20, 2014

Saturday Ramblings 12.22.12

Well what do you know? The world didn’t end after all. As a matter of fact, here in Oklahoma we didn’t even get any rain. So we live to flip the Mayan calendar over to a new day. The doomsday predictors did leave quite a mess behind them. Just watch how many people rush to the malls today to begin their Christmas shopping they thought they wouldn’t have to do. Well, watch them from afar. Right now, we need to gather ourselves together and ramble.

Yep, the Mayans blew it. I mean, we all believed them, right? Well, ok, some kooks at NASA didn’t believe them, but hey! They still insist that men landed on the moon.

“Not believing” is gaining a lot of steam these days. Seems the “Nones“—those who claim no religious affiliation—are the third-largest religious group in the world. They must be official. They even have their own holiday, something called HumanLight. Anyone have a favorite HumanLight carol they’d like to sing?

Christianity Today released their list of the top albums of 2012. There are some glaring omissions (where are the Beach Boys? Joe Walsh? The Head and the Heart?), but I do like their choice for number four. What albums would you have on this list?

Stephen Prothero tells us six things he doesn’t want to hear after the school shootings in Connecticut. I have five people I don’t want to hear talk about it—or really, anything—ever again. Start with James Dobson. Then Mike Huckabee. David Barton. Bryan Fischer. And this yahoo from Tennessee. Memo to these five: Do not ever bring up your culture war agenda when the hearts of parents, spouses, brothers, sisters and friends have been ripped out by a senseless, horrible act. I wanted to call these five “idiots,” but I thought it might be offensive to those who are merely clueless about life. These five go beyond that. God did not cause twenty innocent children to die because prayer was taken out of public school or because some states now allow same-sex marriages. Get that through your mushy skulls once and for all. And mix in a large glass of shut the hell up.

Now then.

Want to watch a movie about John Lennon produced by evangelist Ray Comfort? I don’t have the time, so if you do watch it, tell the rest of us how it is, ok?

How about a nice fruitcake for Christmas? There is a dying monastery in Missouri where a handful of elderly monks make nearly 25,000 fruitcakes a year. Don’t be a spoilsport. Eat your fruitcake, and make a monk happy.

In order to help you with your last minute gift grabbing, I have come up with a few ideas for that special someone on your list. I mean, how can you say “I love you” any better than with a glove hat? Or how about witnessing to that agnostic in your office by giving him a “Jesus Shaves” mug? And then there’s the Synonymous Rambler’s favorite, the Jesus Toaster. Hurry. Quantities are limited. Or we can hope.

Birthday greetings went out this week to Stan Kenton; Alan Freed; Tim Conway; Ludwig van Beethoven; Billy Gibbons; William Saffire; Paul Rodgers; Ty Cobb; Keith Richards; Steven Spielberg; Brad Pitt; Alvin Lee; Jane Fonda; Frank Zappa; Carl Wilson; and Samuel L. Jackson.

I thought, “Would I dare to put up a bonus video featuring Frank Zappa on InternetMonk?” And then I thought, “Of course I would. Who doesn’t love Frank Zappa, especially if he is playing with Steve Vai?” Enjoy.

[yframe url=’http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TEnzdp71U78′]

Comments

  1. Good to see Bonnie Raitt near the top of the Christianity Today list. Her cover of Jerry Rafferty’s “Right Down the Line” received a fair amount of airplay around here. There are a lot of names on that list that I don’t recognize. I’ll have to check out the Dylan release. I have only heard “”Duquesne Whistle”.

    • petrushka1611 says:

      I didn’t think the rest of the album QUITE lived up to Duquesne Whistle, but it was pretty good overall. Better than “Together Through Life.” And ‘Tempest’, the 15-minute song about the Titanic, is superb.

  2. Carolina Chocolate Drops are strange and excellent. We’ve got their previous album, “Genuine Negro Jig.” I’ll definitely get this new one.

  3. That’s a pretty ugly glove hat! I guess you store some stuff in the “fingers:” chocolate kisses, emergency fire starter, car key, grocery list.

    Oh, I missed that Dylan had a new album out this year. I need to check that out. Thanks for the link, Jeff.

    Merry Christmas, Jeff, and all you iMonkers!

  4. I checked out the clips from Dylan’s album on Amazon and it sounds good. While there, I also checked out clips from Van Morrison’s Born To Sing: No Plan B album. I want that too.

  5. Amen, Stephen Prothero. Clarity through the noise of Huckabee & others.

  6. Get that through your mushy skulls once and for all. And mix in a large glass of shut the hell up.

    Amen, brother. A-freaking-men. I was under the impression that God responded to sin by sending His Son to die, and not sending gunmen after ours. Dead children to sate the wrath of an angry god–do we worship Jesus or some bloodthirsty pagan god like Quetzalcoatl?

    Also, I was pleasantly surprised by the bands they had on their list and in the honorable mention. Punch Brothers, Carolina Chocolate Drops, Bob Dylan, the Avett Brothers, Leonard Cohen, Dr John, and as Jeff mentioned, the Boss. I remember a time when Christian magazines didn’t even like to mention secular bands except to comb through their albums for sin.

    • I was under the impression that God responded to sin by sending His Son to die, and not sending gunmen after ours.

      Great quote, Michael. Thanks.

    • “Dead children to sate the wrath of an angry god–do we worship Jesus or some bloodthirsty pagan god like Quetzalcoatl?”

      I think they paint a far more passive-aggressive view of God, not that he caused the killings, but he let it happen, because he wasn’t wanted in the school. I’m not sure that is a less despicable representation of God.

      • I agree, they aren’t saying that God sent him. But I can’t see much of a difference between a God who says, “Go forth and kill first graders” and one who says,”Well, I would have saved your kids, but less people are Christians. And, you know, school prayer, evolution, and gay people.” Either way, sin is the impetus for God’s choice, which is the impetus for unspeakable evil. The latter just seems like a more cowardly version of the former, to me.

      • Interesting parallel to NY Review of Books last week, where Garry Wills calls the love of guns, “Our Moloch”.

    • “I was under the impression that God responded to sin by sending His Son to die, and not sending gunmen after ours. Dead children to sate the wrath of an angry god–do we worship Jesus or some bloodthirsty pagan god like Quetzalcoatl?”

      This. This exactly. I couldn’t agree more.

      • Blogging here and at Wartburg is my atonement for once admiring and following James Dobson and John Piper. How can Christians be so cruel?

        • Dobson had/has a lot of good advice for raising children. Then he decided to start telling us how God wanted us to vote. Never the same after that.

          • Good advice? Wasn’t Dobson the one who advocated beating a baby?
            Disgusting human being says disgusting thing. Film at 11

          • Headless Unicorn Guy says:

            “Remember James Dobson? Did a lot of good things before fear of homosexuals drove him over a cliff with his constituency in the car?” — Internet Monk, some time ago

      • Headless Unicorn Guy says:

        “I was under the impression that God responded to sin by sending His Son to die, and not sending gunmen after ours. Dead children to sate the wrath of an angry god–do we worship Jesus or some bloodthirsty pagan god like Quetzalcoatl?”

        Not Quetzalcoatl. More like Huitzlipochtli, Tezcatlipoca, Coatlicue, Xipe Totec, or “Decapitator” (the nameless god of the Moche, whose gods were even more bloodthirsty than those of the Aztecs).

        • Hahahaha!! As I typed that this morning I was thinking someone’s probably going to be an expert on Aztec lore and inform me that Quetzalcoatl was not terribly bloodthirsty at all.

        • How dishonest to emphasize malignant deities of other cultures/peoples WHILE ignoring the bloodthirsty rage of the Angloamerican god [No, he is NOT the same as Creator Jesus!].
          And, as usual, indian peoples are always the epitomy of evil, aren`t they?
          That is why to the christian puritans and pilgrims indian peoples were the evil Canaanites needing to be exterminated.
          Truth is that whether or not bloodthirstyness and genocide is right or wrong always depends upon WHO is committing it.
          Truth is no pagan deity is a match for the Angloamerican god`s punitiveness, vindictiveness, revenge, retribution, genocide……and yes, even child sacrifice!
          As one christian minister proclaimed when asked WHY he tortured and slaughtered indian children :
          “nits make lice.”
          This kind of horror is not a thing of the past. But you won`t know that unless you or those you love have been at the receiving end of this kind of cruelty and hate. Or you at least believe them, although you lack the personal experience.
          Very few of those who don`t have the experience will ever acknowledge the cruelty of the Angloamerican god and his followers.

          There is nothing as cruel as christian hate!
          Rarely does a day pass when I don`t hear several christians refer to those they hate [because the Anglo god hates them] as subhuman scum!
          Once you DEHUMANIZE those you hate, anything goes. Any kind of maltreatment is okay. And the mindset is what ultimately leads to genocide. You can all see that when Hitler did it, but not when “your own kind” and your deity does it………….
          THAT is some schizophrenic mystery!!!

          birdwoman

          • I have an old friend who used to refer to Christianity as the religion of hate. At the time, I shared his bitterness toward Christianity in some of it’s more heinous historical manifestations. I can only say that, since then, my own experience of Jesus Christ has been of one who reigns over a kingdom of peace and mercy. I’m sorry for the hurtful words and actions that you and others have experienced at the hands of Christians. The peace of the Lord be always with you.

    • The more I read anything written by the vast majority of “Christian” commentators, the less sure I am that they have ever read the Bible. I cannot understand how they get what they say out of the book they claim to read.

  7. A happy and holy Christmas to you all, and let’s be glad the world didn’t end (although, some days, I really wouldn’t mind that much if it did happen).

    Link courtesy of Leah Libresco, a re-telling of the Nativity story by New Zealand children (made by St. Paul’s Anglican church, Auckland).

    Enjoy the holidays!

  8. “Who doesn’t love Frank Zappa……?” Oh, my. But, love, let us be true to one another……On second thought, never mind.

  9. I’ve been seeing the culture war meme flying around facebook and work (the idea that this happened because america is too gay, secular and doesn’t ‘pray’ in public schools)

    Everybody making this argument conveniently ignores the fact that even more secularized countries and their public schools rarely, if ever experience these kinds of tragedies…and secondly, this evil has come into places where their scenario should exclude it…such as churches that have had this happen (and the amish school in Nickel Mines).

    I agree – time for the culture warriors to shut up before they push more people away from faith in Christ…

    • time for the culture warriors to shut up before they push more people away from faith in Christ…

      Another great quote this morning. Thanks, Andy.

      • Agreed. Great quote.

        Dear Lord, help me to not be a hindrance to people: of coming to know You, of knowing Your love for them, of knowing Your desire to have a relationship with them. Amen.

    • Klasie Kraalogies says:

      I think the appropriate phrase Is “shut the hell up”.

      But, unfortuantely, a lot of these culture warrioirs and assosiated riff-raff seem to geniunely worship a deity whose vindictiveness and bloodthurst is more akin to the Keres than anything in Scripture.

      • I wonder how James Dobson and others would have lasted if Nero was in charge and they were under Roman law? The other problem is that the persecution complex only fuels the paranoia.

  10. Marcus Johnson says:

    In the wake of all these so-called Christ followers trying to assign blame for the Sandy Hook Elementary School shootings on God’s will/judgment on gays/lack of prayer in schools, etc., is it any wonder that there is a growing number of people out there who would much rather not believe in anything?

    • Good point. It is true that a lot of people who speak for Christianity represent a god who is frankly despicable. I’m not sure they realize that this picture of God may be the only one some people ever hear. Another reason to preach Christ, and him crucified: the original and true image of God.

      • Also, I’m not sure what some of these yahoos are implying – if we were all good little cultural Christians then this kind of thing wouldn’t happen? Kind of reminds me of Victorian England. Which didn’t work out so well for the victims of Jack-the-Ripper. Or a few hundred thousand murdered indigenous peoples of less worthy geographies.

    • Brianthedad says:

      A friend pointed out to me that this is a result of prosperity gospel thinking. It’s the natural outworking of having your ‘best life now’ when you’re doing all the things ‘good Christians’ are supposed to do. If something bad happens, it’s obvious the reverse must be true.

      They have made their god too small. They have put him in a box so he fits their understanding, which seems to reflect a treatment of God like a talisman. This is unfortunate. He is much greater than that. The true God never left schools, or wherever. It is the height of hubris to think we can banish Him from anywhere. Any god that man can remove from anywhere is but an idol.

  11. Beautiful, Jeff! Amen. And thank you!!

  12. I don’t agree with these people who see God’s will carried out in these shootings, or any other shootings. And I think it’s very Westboro Baptist Church-like to have that kind of attitude and insensitivity. But lets remember that in the very midst of our canonical Scriptures, not on the periphery but in the center of a very important narrative about how the same who God who we Christians claim to find in Jesus Christ liberated a people for himself, there is a story about how this God sent a plague to Egypt that killed multitudes of innocent children. It takes a fairly sophisticated and somewhat ambiguous exegesis to de-historicize this passage, and others like it, and yet continue to hold onto the assertion that the life of Jesus as given in the New Testament and the account of the killing of the innocents given in these passages are inspired by the same God. It’s a risky and complicated hermeneutical undertaking: go too far, and you end up severing Jesus from Yahweh, and then all kinds of gnostic phantasmagoria is inevitable, up to and including the Nazi era German Christians eisegesis , which excised huge portions of Scripture and denied the Jewishness of Jesus in the project of making him into a blue-eyed Aryan; don’t go far enough, and you end up with a God who slays, destroys and curses like a violently abusive father, and who would certainly have no qualms about using a psychotic gunman in achieving his purposes. For my part, I neither believe that God’s hand was involved in these shooting NOR that he sent a plague to intentionally kill the Egyptian innocents in the time of Moses. I’m willing take the risk of acknowledging error in Scripture in the project of keeping the humane image of God that I’m able to distill from the New Testament. But there is something that could be called eisegesis rather than exegesis in what I’m doing. I’m willing to take that risk, because I find myself unable to pray to a capricious God who takes the life of innocents. I’m curious about how others negotiate this difficulty without simply turning a blind eye to the discontinuity involved (discontinuity between the image of Jesus as compassionate and loving and certain Old Testament texts that reveal God as capricious and cruel).

    • My best attempts always lead to – it’s a mystery and God is a mystery I can’t solve…

    • 1. I find Jewish scholars to be more helpful in this area.
      2. Tread lightly for “who can know the mind of God?”
      3. I do not see humankind’s relationship/understanding of God to be static but an ever-evolving thing. This doesn’t negate laws that were given in the Old Testament, but calls us to make the Word live & breathe in every age.
      4. There is good. There is evil. In between the two is free will. But free will & freedom are not the same thing. Free will leads to freedom only when we take responsibility for our actions & act responsibly, so freedom is inherently aligned with good. More often than not, we define freedom as the ability to do whatever we want. This is not only incorrect, it is inherently aligned with evil.

    • I’d avoid it..if you go down that path pretty soon you’re on your way to becomming a mini John Piper. You drool, salivate and masturbate to any disaster believing its part of God’s sovereignty.

    • I dunno. I see the continuing story in the Bible as one of God trying to have a relationship with persons while also maintaining the balance of good and overcoming evil. God has allowed people to act as free agents, and sometimes that means we do terrible things. The price of will if you want. On the other hand, one inescapable paradigm throughout the Old and New testaments is that this life is not all there is. When God allows death – whatever the form – there is a reckoning on the other side, and recompense. Revelation, for example, pictures God as comforting those who have been tormented in this life, and plaguing those who visited evil on others in this life. If physical death were the end, it would be hard to justify a God who let anyone die. But the Christian doctrine has long been that this life is not all there is, and God works perfect justice on the other side.

  13. Thanks for the music list! And as always, Zappa! The further and more idiots
    push their own “God will revenge” agenda, the more people will turn away from Christianity.

    Thanks to all the iMonks! Have a beautiful holiday!

  14. I didn’t watch the Ray Comfort video; however, I saw a review which categorized it as a sham merely to promote his standard message.

  15. I’m not understanding how more religion in the classroom could have stopped an armed psychopath – who never attended the school – from doing what he did. It seems like more the same superstitious nonesense which lead to the Mayan apocalypse hoax. In a modern, technological world, people seem to long for the good old days of flat planet ruled by mythical beasts and demigods. Christian leaders make these inane, insensitive statements and wonder why people are walking away and walking past churches. This and the prehistoric views on women raised during the election make Christians look irrational, to put it lightly.

    Some of these same leaders were concerned how we explain the shootings to our kids. This is how we do it? Well, Johnny, God killed those kids because he wasn’t allowed in the school. That makes God sound like the actual shooter, who felt shunned, was jealous, and thought his mother loved the school kids she taught more than him. Yes, let’s teach Johnny that if you don’t pay attention to God all the time, he’s going to lose it and do something crazy. Johnny didn’t stop and pray while out playing in the sandbox? Oh no! It’s bad enough that kids who grow up in abusive homes tend to blame the violence on themselves.

    • I grew up surrounded by kids who had religion in the classroom, Catholic school kids, and believe me, they were perfect little pagans (in the Caligula/regular animal(sometimes human) sacrifices sense of pagan, not good witch/ neopagan” we wouldn’t hurt a fly” sense of pagan) when it came to the way they treated others. Real terrors.

      • Good point. And if you extend this thought to the Islamic religion, I assume they have plenty of “God” in their schools and yet some have no qualms about killing innocent people.

        • No, no, no. you miss the point. It isn’t any religion that needs to be taught in public but the Christian (TM) religion. The first amendment guarantees you the freedom to follow MY religion.

  16. I read the article about David Barton. Not impressed. Then I went to Wikipedia and read about David Barton.

    According to Wikipedia:

    Barton holds no formal credentials in history or law, and scholars dispute the accuracy and integrity of his assertions about history, accusing him of practicing misleading historical revisionism, “pseudoscholarship” and spreading “outright falsehoods”.[5][6][7][8] According to the New York Times, “many professional historians dismiss Mr. Barton, whose academic degree is in Christian Education from Oral Roberts University, as a biased amateur who cherry-picks quotes from history and the Bible.”[9] Barton’s 2012 book The Jefferson Lies was voted “the least credible history book in print” by the users of the History News Network website.[10]

    Glenn Beck, on the other hand, calls Barton “the Library of Congress in shoes”.

    • Barton is history’s Ken Ham. When those evangelicals look to as leaders start equating the Second Amendment with the Ten Commandments, we have crossed the Rubicon. Posting guards in “government” schools? Interesting that self-anointed evangelical spokesmen suggested that even before the NRA. Who is shilling for whom? And what about assigning armed guards to the many churches where Jesus has been evicted to preach political folk religion? I see a disturbing trend developing – an increasingly disgruntled, paranoid and militant movement. And it is fueled by the Darbyite schadenfreude over a more dangerous and violent America. I fear many of these kooks intent on making LaHaye’s books a self-fulfilling prophecy are leading many into dangerous proximity to a vigilante mentality.

      • Headless Unicorn Guy says:

        Barton would be an excellent historian for North Korea.

        “Equating Second Amendment with the Ten Commandments” — GREAT LINE!

      • The NRA has turned the second amendment into a violation of the second commandment (worship of graven images forbidden).

  17. It has been several years since I have read Christianity Today, so I was surprised to see non-Christian artists on their top 10 albums list! Are they “progressing?”

    I’m with you on The Head and the Heart! We saw this this summer and they put on a great show. I would add Mumford and Sons, Alex Claire and The Lumineers to that list.

    • Having only recently started a subscription to Chrisianity Today (a year or so), I can’t compare it to what it was, but I’ve found it to be quite full of deep, interesting and balanced columns.

  18. While I agree that there is most likely no connection between school shootings and God being “ordered out of our schools and communities; the military and public conversations”, generally speaking I think Huckabee has a point about there being a sin and heart problem in our society. That being said, like you said Jeff, now is not the time. Thanks again for your thoughts. Always appreciated

    • Marcus Johnson says:

      That would be a great point if that was the point that Huckabee was trying to make, but it wasn’t.

    • Certainly it is true that these things are caused by sin, but the theology is totally screwed up. They are stating that these things would never happen if religion (i.e. good, wholesome, traditional family values (TM) ) were taught in schools. It runs completely in the face of the apostle Paul, who said that where the law increases, trespasses increase (Romans 5:20). Their world view is wrapped around the false teaching that once one believes in Jesus, one is instantly transforms from a “sinner” to the fold of the “saved” – incapable of such evil (assuming one truly believes, etc). The reality of scripture is that we are sinful and forever inventing new ways to sin. There are plenty of examples of bible-believing, church-attending people committing heinous crimes. In some cases, the murderer’s religion made the crime that much more evil, because of the justifications and rationalism applied to the crime. Religion is no substitute for accountability, crime prevention and (civil) law enforcement. Ironically, it becomes conservatives preaching that people are basically good – provided that they have the right social/religious environment.

  19. Now that the whole school shooting tragedy has descended into ludicrous arguments about guns and god, I’m guessing no serious prevention efforts will be addressed. How in a post-Columbine/post-911 world did this kid have unauthorized access to the school building? Even our tiny private school has security cameras and moderated door locks. I’m guessing behind all the conservative rhetoric behind arming teachers is a decade of unwillingness to fund tighter security measures at older public schools. It is a real problem. For this year’s election, my polling place was in the gymnasium of a local elementary school, which was in the absolute back of the school building, requiring voters to walk unescorted down the hallway past dozens of classrooms. I’m not convinced arming teachers will deter the sick motive for such crimes, but tighter security can minimize the opportunity.

    • Agreed

    • I appreciated Obama’s comments that stemming this kind of violence is a complex issue. While I am open to gun control as part of a solution, I seriously doubt it will do anything to stem the kind of public suicides that we have seen recently. That is a deep cultural issue, but until we get a handle on it the kinds of security you mention are an ethical imperative upon us all.

      • Headless Unicorn Guy says:

        Something that went ZANG! in my head a couple days ago:

        A SCHOOL MASSACRE IS A DO-IT-YOURSELF REALITY TV SHOW.
        NOT ONLY THAT, BUT A GUARANTEED HIT — ALL CHANNELS, 24/7 OVER A WEEK AND COUNTING.
        Enough of a blockbuster hit to even jerk the chain all the way to the White House — “DANCE, PRESIDENT! DANCE!”
        And all you need to do is pull a trigger or swing a blade enough times.
        Imagine how that feels to a disturbed loser nobody.

    • I thought I read that he blasted through the glass door to gain entrance, so “security” was breached….not that they didn’t have any. In fact it seemed pretty good. Just not adequate for a random, high powered attack. We’d need more than one armed guard on high alert, plus bullet-proof glass…maybe random snipers on the roof…..etc….how do we want our world to be?

      • this is replying to Dumb Ox….I didn’t quite get it in the right place, sorry.

      • It would seem the ‘christian’ libertarian/conservative types in our society want exactly that… BUT wait! they’re the ones really really concerned about a police state? huh? What do gun worshipers want?

  20. Isn’t the “elephant in the room” on the shooting issue mental illness and how we, as a society/world, have a serious lack of understanding about it?

    • Marcus Johnson says:

      Not quite. Statistically speaking, people with mental illnesses and social disorders are more likely to become victims of violence than perpetrators of violence.

      However, if we start to look at the ways in which men are taught to express their frustration and insecurities in this society, through aggression, that may be the true “elephant.” We encourage men to be violent and aggressive, but we cannot control that release. Unfortunately, it is a problem that is thousands of years in the making, and it will probably not be resolved until the world is made new.

      • I think you probably hit it Marcus…..some of the violence and aggression is found in people we’d not call “mentally ill” and many that are mentally ill aren’t violent.
        It’s maybe more like “culturally ill”.? But we do have to try—-at least not to be swept up and also respond with violence.

  21. Heather Angus says:

    I won’t weigh in on the heavy stuff, but I do have a modest suggestion for “HumanLight.” They need a bit more “brain light” or at least “geek light.” At this point, (a) their web site features some (probably) eloquent words that no one can read because they have photos flashing over them, changing every few seconds, and (b) their flashing photo series looks as if a 5th-grader with an elderly film-loaded camera had taken pictures as a very dull church supper.

    The HumanLight hymn could be “I am Human; Hear Me Snore.”

    • Human Light? Uh, no thank you. I think I’d prefer Bud Light.

      • No religious affiliation? As an organization of the formerly disorganized, “Human Light” proves it’s really a matter of whether you are affiliated with an organized religion, or a disorganized one.

  22. Headless Unicorn Guy says:

    They even have their own holiday, something called HumanLight. Anyone have a favorite HumanLight carol they’d like to sing?

    “I’M A FESTIVUS POLE!
    I’M A FESTIVUS POLE!
    THAT’S A SEINFELD XMAS TREE!”

  23. Headless Unicorn Guy says:

    Want to watch a movie about John Lennon produced by evangelist Ray Comfort?

    With or without Ray Comfort’s famous banana?

  24. The US military and its mercenary subcontractors have murdered several hundred children through its drone program. Alas, none of them are likely to have had studio portraits showing off their white skin, blonde hair, and blue eyes. And then there is the US media to get around. And an American populace who just don’t give a damn about Pakistanis, but will agonize over a local shooting for months on end even though there is little more to be said. Really, if divine judgement really exists, then the USA should have sunk into the ocean a long time ago.

  25. Remember, Gerald, you’re not allowed to call it “murder” or even “manslaughter (child-slaughter?)” if it’s done in the name of national security; I believe the correct euphemism in that case is “collateral damage.” And let’s not forget that the commander-in-chief, who has the hit-list for those drone strikes in his office and orders them personally, occupies the highest political office in this country. Wwjd? Why, I wouldn’t be surprised to find him occupying the target site in the crosshairs of a drone strike, that’s what he would do.

    • I believe the technical term is “war crime.” Thank God that there are still a few Americans like Bradley Manning, whose consciences are not merely vestigial.