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The Big Picture

'Have you ever heard of Plato, Aristotle, Socrates? Morons.' -- Vizzini from "The Princess Bride"

Monday, July 31, 2006

Curiouser and Curiouser

For what it is worth, there is a reason why I pick on the Christians I do, and not others. Most fundamentalists are lay people who find comfort in a structured and highly rigid belief system. It is these believers whom we should be focused on because they represent the misguided beliefs that are/can/will be so dangerous to American society. They are the 'sheep' led by the 'shepard' of fundamental Christianity; in their beliefs alone they represent no serious danger except to the mental well being and growth of their children. [They only pose a threat when they vote for these crazies and put them into office, or push them to pass bad policies.] Answers in Genesis fits this category as well. What does not fit are such leaders as Pastor Swank and Paster Fred Phelps. They are Pat Robertson wannabes who say the most absurd things; things that only cranks can listen to and believe in what they are professing. These are the shepards who get the ball rolling on these unAmerican policies that cause so much harm to individuals here at home, and entire nations abroad. And while the policies may be unAmerican, they are clearly pro-Christianity -- gay marriage, anti-contraception, anti-choice for example. Pat Robertson himself is this as well; but he is dangerous because he has a very large following who hangs on his every word as if it were God's. [Pat, of course, says that it is.]

The reason I bother at all has nothing to do with the fact that we disagree, Christians believe in Jesus and God and supernatural things, I believe in those things we know to be real. If that was it, then I would simply let them live on in their ignorance, thinking the world is only 6,000 years old, and any day now Jesus is going to return and sweep them all up into heaven, leaving the rest of us to be tortured and killed by ten-headed monsters and such. But that is not it. They are not content to just believe what they want to believe and teach their children the same (no matter how harmful it is to the children). No. They want to force everyone else to accept their silly beliefs, they want everyone else to live by their rules, and they want to force us to teach our children the same things they teach their own. Because of this, I fight.

They seem to think if gay men are allowed to marry, then that destroys the entire institution of marriage, and that somehow their own marriage will be cheapened. They use coded excuses to defend this position; decline of American society, traditional marriage, family values. These are hollow statements. They suggest that things have degenerated into a worse state. But that is not the case at all. They change, that is true; but change does not mean decline. Today's children are exposed to violence at unprecedented levels, through video games and TV. But they are also exposed to why violence is so horrible as well. They learn faster that violence leads to negative ends, not positive ones. They see Columbine, for example. The Iraq war, torture, genocide. All these things offset the violence they see on TV and experience through video games. The same type of reasoning goes for homosexuality as well. There have always been gays. There always will be gays. In the past, they were so humiliated or threatened with death, that they "remained in the closet". Today, they are realizing that they are people too, and they deserve to live their lives just like all others. This leads to a strong desire for equal rights. Their only desire is to be able to live, and love, just like straight couples. Yet that is so disgusting to anti-blasphemy Christians that they fight to put gays back in the closet. To these Christians, they see the "gay problem" as new. In a sense it is, because gays are only now fighting for equality, whereas before they lived quite secret lives. So it seems like a new problem, when in reality, it is a situation as old as (and actually much older than) the Bible.

In Jesus' time, his younger generation was wicked and evil, the worst ever known. The same is still true today, the younger generation is wicked and evil, the worst ever known. But how does today's younger generation really compare to the younger generation of Jesus' time? I would guess they are about the same. They both fight their parents, strive for their personal freedom and independence, and so on. Rebelliousness is not a sign of wickedness, rather it is proof of burgeoning self-awareness and rationality. Rationality and self-awareness can easily appear to be wickedness, when viewed with the more rigid standards of adulthood. But in reality, they are admirable qualities which only lack age-tempered wisdom.

It is the anti-blasphemy Christians who mistake my attacks on their views as a desire to eliminate their worldview. They think for some reason it is acceptable to fight to attack other's worldviews, but not acceptable for us to attack their own. Allowing other Americans to possess and live by their worldviews will not destroy those Christian's worldviews. But that is not how they see it. This is the irony of intolerance, it is incredibly thin skinned.

Thursday, July 27, 2006

Long Overdue

Well.. I have finally returned. I want to apologize to my loyal readers for my long disappearance (all two of you). A special shout out to you in Los Angeles -- I don't know why I'm so popular there, maybe write me and let me know. Anyway, I am back again for the forseeable future. I have a few various thoughts and rants prepared which I will post over the next few days, some woefully out of date (I write about the now-forgotten da Vinci Code) and some that will be shown to be virtually timeless (as long as Christianity exists).

First, a few quick notes. A few months back I wrote about a scam that I was a witness to. I predicted a June departure and a later set of customer complaints/lawsuits. Well so far I have been dead on. The company has pulled all its local reps and no longer answers its customer service/activation lines. The complaints to the duped company have already begun as well. What is it about fundamentalist companies that makes them so unethical and untrustworthy? Especially companies based in Utah..

With the cost and unwanted environmental effects of gas/oil so high and rising, would someone please tell these liberal activist groups to lay off their opposition to nuclear power and Yucca Mountain? Don't they realize they are as destructive and dangerous as the anti-stem cell crowd of the far religious right?

Speaking of high energy costs, how are the rest of you (i mean non-south westerners) holding up in this heat wave? We here in the great western expanse have been having normal temperatures but excessively high humidity, up to 35%. So even here in Vegas where we love telling our tourist guests, "But it's a dry heat" have been melting. The entire country has been sucking up the Megawatts to run our AC units -- thus the link to energy. It is long past due to start building new nuclear power plants. The large up-front cost will be more than balanced by the savings over fossil fuels in light of ever increasing costs of oil and natural gas. We'll discuss this in more detail in a future post.

Murder in the first... Now that a frozen speck of tissue the size of a pinhead is a full blown human being, when will fertility clinics be called genocidal murderers worse than Saddam Hussein? I guess its now time to call out the National Guard so Rummy can invade all those terrorist-supporting regimes we ignorant civilians call fertility clinics. More...

Stem cell research
With stem cell research making news again in light of president Bush's recent veto of a wildly popular measure funding the research, I thought a few words were in order. Bush calls stem cell research, 'murder.' I call that assinine. I still cannot fathom how conservative Christians can lay claim to 'absolutist' morality, when in the 70s they called test-tube babies soulless babies and technological monsters, can now today claim that one of those 'soulless babies' which has been discarded and headed for destruction is a full human being and would be murdered if instead of being destroyed were used for research into saving actual human lives.

It truly boggles the mind to try and understand how they can believe they are not spouting nonsense. I guess to be a conservative Christian all logic and reasoning must be checked at the door. But then again that should be expected from a group who elieves the bible is literally true, and scientifically accurate even though it claims that all the stars falling to the earth is physically possible and extracting fresh water from salt water is impossible. It is all too easy to show just how absurd the 'facts' and 'science' of the bible are, and thus how misguided those Christianity who believe them are. I would simply write all fundamentalist Christians off as having their heads in the sand when it comes to Truth and Reality if not for the fact that they count among their bretheren, the President of these United States, the Republican majority of Congress and the Senate, and now the majority of the Supreme Court. So here we are with a man who considers saving human lives as 'murder' and killing civilians by the thousands as 'freedom.'

We all knew already that the morality of conservative Christians was twisted and perverse -- they profess that the only lives worth living are Christians (all others are guided by Satan and thus already 'dead') yet all human life is worthless and beneath contempt (due to original sin and the mere fact of being created). And if that is the outlook they wish to adhere to, that is fine it is their choice to be made in a free society. But now they are making health and life/death choices for the rest of us now. It is the highest form of oppression to condemn law-abiding Americans to death by denying them the medical research which could save their lives. It is a terrifying duplicity to claim 'oppression' on the one hand because they are not allowed to force their religious views on others via government interference yet on the other hand be a perfect demonstration of liberty to condemn other Americans to death as a result of governmental enforcement of fundamentalist Christian doctrines.

The glaring irony to all this is that the use of stem cells could be considered a short term temporary cure to these many diseases. It is the ultimate goal of geneticists to gain enough knowledge and understanding of the human genome to be able to control the genetic code itself. This would mean that the body could literally regenerate itself, replacing diseased tissues with healthy tissues in response to genetic therapy. But this 'fountain of youth' is decades, if not more, away.