Letters to the Editor

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HOLIDAYS: Appreciate cultural, religious differences

Letter by Doug Benedetti, Puyallup on Dec. 20, 2011 at 1:18 pm with 97 Comments »
December 20, 2011 1:18 pm

Re: “Atheists go too far” (online letter).

I thought that we might get through Christmas without the usual bickering, an idea which seems to have been overly optimistic. This year it’s the writer of this letter who has gone too far. He chose to lob the first volley in his little war. His letter is all about picking a fight and not about Christmas spirit.

Atheists are not the only ones who might take exception to being wished a merry Christmas. Many religions celebrate their own holidays this time of year. How wonderful it would be if everyone would take the time to appreciate the cultural differences that exist amongst us. Let’s not take his rant seriously.

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Leave a comment Comments → 97
  1. Phooey. No one would be complaining about atheist rabble-rousers if they hadn’t felt compelled to assault Christmas a long time ago.

  2. Thanks for your astute observations Doug, but as is readily apparent, many Christians are stuck in the Old Testament and reveal their spirituality with revenge and aggression, or as “tit-for-tat”, and “an eye for an eye and a tooth for a tooth”, as opposed to turning the other cheek.

  3. TacomaDad79 says:

    The world is an amazing place, an educated person can see the joy in the holidays in a vast number of rituals from all cultures during this time of year. Let us not forget that Christmas itself is a potluck of many different rituals from many different origins.

    I for one do not celebrate Christmas in my household, but have no problem accepting and appreciating Christmas cheer being passed about with words of “Merry Christmas”, Happy Holidays, or what ever the positive interactions with people this time of year may be.

    Happy Solstice to all and to all a good night.

  4. More “phooey” cirrus. Merry Christmas. May you experience the peace and love of Christ in 2012.

  5. “the peace and love of Christ”

    When you hear this from a Christian take it as intended:

    “We’ve got the answers and you are too stupid to get it”

    Or the ever famous “I’ll pray for you”…..

  6. Okay, maybe the TNT blog monitors can save us all some time and just transfer all the comments from the other blog topic CHRISTMAS: Atheists go to far, to this thread. Then we don’t have to go through all that crap again.

    God Bless you RW…!

  7. Muckibr – it’s a twoferone deal

  8. took14theteam says:

    And his little dog too…..

  9. It’s moniker 2

  10. took14theteam says:

    Peace and Luv from the Muck

  11. took14theteam says:

    Name calling saint muck_nos?

  12. took14theteam says:

    I thought you were better than that, so you preach….

  13. took14theteam says:

    I think I am going to have some long email conversations with the moderators about what this site has become. Like the snail used to “have”.

  14. aislander says:

    The moderator won’t return MY emails. I’m holding fast to the hope that there was some technical problem and they never went through. I’m sure there’s no favoritism…

  15. Pity the Conservatives. The world is against them.

  16. Vox_clamantis_in_deserto says:

    The world is against them.

    Sez the world record holder for deleted posts, bans, and new screen names.

  17. concernedtacoma7 says:

    Pity RW and his hate. Merry Christmas.

  18. Hey tooky! Just finally gave in to playing the game by your rules. I tried to take the high road, but you guys just refused to stay on the downlow, so occasionally I’ll stoop down to make you feel okay about yourself.

    Merry Xmas!

  19. Blessed Yule!

  20. frankiethomas says:

    Happy Solstice everybody!!!

  21. LarryFine says:

    Hmmm… the projection pattern from Muckibr continues…

    “Down-low” is an African American slang term[1] that refers to a subculture of men who usually identify as heterosexual, but who have sex with men; some avoid sharing this information even if they have female sexual partner(s).
    KOOKY
    .

    muckibr
    Dec. 14, 2011 at 1:43 pm
    I’d really ask you all to read the post by Pacman33 and then you decide who is using hate speech to trigger divisions. As I have often maintained on these blogs, name-calling is one of the most childish and immature things a person can do on these blogs.
    .
    muckibr
    Dec. 13, 2011 at 3:59 pm
    … of those 60 or so Tea Baggers in congress… kooky more projection… .
    teabagging
    “the insertion of one man’s sack into another person’s mouth.”

    .
    muckibr
    Dec. 17, 2011 at 9:21 pm
    Oh my God, did you say Larry is Gay and has a Gun?
    .
    muckibr
    Dec. 18, 2011 at 8:56 am
    Come on LarryFine, you know. You can come out of your closet now, here, because at least the liberal and centrist leaning folks on this blog will accept you for who you really are LarryFine, or is that Fine Larry, which really does have an elegant and delicate sound to it. Liberals and centrists don’t often engage in class warfare based on sexual orientation, so you are safe with us Fine LarryFine the elegant one.
    Now, as it has to do with things people have a real personal choice in, unlike a person’s sexual orientation which is pretty much determined before birth as a genetic factor, we may engage in Class Warfare to a degree.
    .

    See what I mean ? Seems the Muckster has a penchant for homosexual terms and them projects them onto others…

  22. yabetchya says:

    Actually, I have often wondered why the Atheists are bothered by Religious traditions. THEY do not believe. Why should it bother them ? “It” is not there, never has been and never will, so where is the fear of a few ‘statues, sales, lighted up houses, a free turkey if need be. I believe their belief is not to believe.

  23. harleyrider1 says:

    Do we have to do the group hug thing and “appreciate all the cultural diversity” around us? Can’t we, as individuals, just like what we like, appreciate what we like – and stay out of our neighbor’s business?

    We got into trouble when people said we had to show that we cared about the other guy’s beliefs so we didn’t hurt his feelings. When we still didn’t show it enough, we had to have classes, ads, scolding training… well, you get the drift. Political correctness.

    Put Country first. Mind your manners. Allow people to have their own beliefs as long as one of them is not destroying America or killing Americans. I’m good with that.

  24. If the cited story is accurate (LF has rejected any and all stories from Palestinian sources so I put this disclaimer), Lyle’s claim about preventing caroling has a ring of truth…..albeit the story comes from Bethlehem and it isn’t atheists who are engaging the Christians.

    Settlers attacked a Palestinian choir bus returning from a carol concert in Nablus on Saturday evening, choristers told Ma’an.

    The singers, from Bethlehem Bible college, said five men attacked them on a quiet road outside of the northern West Bank city.

    http://www.maannews.net/eng/ViewDetails.aspx?ID=445857

  25. And here is another story – not sure how this guy thinks that this is an effective way of spreading the love of Jesus:

    A man who police said drove up the steps of the Indiana War Memorial draped in an American flag and carrying a gun told RTV6 he was trying to spread the message of Jesus Christ.

    Daniel Whitaker, 49, admitted to pouring gasoline down the steps of the memorial and lighting it on fire Nov. 22, leading to a tense standoff with police.

    http://www.theindychannel.com/news/30030393/detail.html

    I guess he decided to win the prize for biggest Christmas light display.

  26. “Actually, I have often wondered why the Atheists are bothered by Religious traditions.”

    Deflection at its best. The truth is that Christianity is the known entity for evangelical movements to change Atheists and others.

    Atheist’s annoyance is when religion, primarily Christianity, tries to enter the government.

    This has all been said before, but like any other subject, if the Conservatives disagree, they pretend they don’t get it.

  27. If I recall correctly, the TEA Party called themselves “Tea baggers” on the onset of their movement.

    As usual, Larry Fine cannot discuss the topic on the thread.

  28. Re a wish for one to enjoy “the peace of Christ….RW sais

    “When you hear this from a Christian take it as intended:
    “We’ve got the answers and you are too stupid to get it”
    Or the ever famous “I’ll pray for you”…..

    What a sad comment. It’s not true, and I pray that most people realize that it’s not. I don’t know who soured you on the gospel, RW (and I now there are some strange and misinformed “Christians” out ther — but it’s a shame to see how it has jaded your view.

    On another note, here’s something I find quite interesting. Those who seem most concerned about the right turning the U.S. into a theocracy often use biblical mandates as the foundation for more government welfare programs. I guess it’s okay to insert religion into politics if it suits YOUR agenda?

    All cynicism and vitriol aside, I actually do pray for the peace of Christ to be visited upon each of you this Christmas. And I’m not talking about religiosity, but the actual peace of Jesus Christ.

  29. As regards religious and cultural differences: They have been the causes of more wars than any other reason. Time to stop doing that!

  30. aislander says:

    At the beginning of the Tea-Party movement, when few or none of the people in the movement were aware of the disgusting nature of the term, some adopted a usage they had heard elsewhere. I first heard the term from a Janeane Garofalo rant, but considered the source and never repeated the hateful slur…

  31. LarryFine says:

    I learned it from bB… ask him what the name of the governor of Idaho reminds him of…
    .

    “Atheist’s annoyance is when religion, primarily Christianity, tries to enter the government”.

    Cool… so you agree with Newt that we need to make sure Sharia is never allowed to be considered in our courts.

  32. LarryFine says:

    beer Boy explained it to me. Ask him what the name of.
    .
    “Atheist’s annoyance is when religion, primarily Christianity, tries to enter the government.”

    Cool, so you agree with Newt, U.S. courts should not observe Sharia.

  33. If people here in America cannot appreciate the various multicultural gifts that others bring to our country when they emigrate here, then where in the world can such a thing ever occur? This is America,the melting pot of all peoples. If not here, where?

  34. I have no problem with any religious expression as long as it is not made possible in any way through government funding.

    Thus – a Creche on church property is wonderful but a creche on government property is not.

    I have no problem with trees, wreaths, and other traditional decorations on government property as they are from a dead religious tradition (Germanic pagan).

  35. sozo – if you can’t read the vile comments by Christians on this and the other thread and be honest about the underlying meaning to Christian rhetoric, I can’t help you.

  36. LarryFine says:

    b explained it to me. Ask him what the name of the gov. from Idaho reminds him of.
    .
    “Atheist’s annoyance is when religion, primarily Christianity, tries to enter the government.”

    Cool, so you agree with Newt, U.S. courts should not observe Sharia.

  37. Garofalo is a hateful little sprite as are several other female comediennes. Kathy Griffith has one of the nastiest mouths in the business, and the fact that she’s made millions gushing forth like a plugged toilet is a testimony to what the world values these days. It’s a sad state of affairs IMO.

  38. I can only be responsible for my own words, RW, and I can tell you that many Christians are sincere and loving. Most, at least the ones I know.

  39. “Garofalo is a hateful little sprite as are several other female comediennes. Kathy Griffith has one of the nastiest mouths in the business, and the fact that she’s made millions gushing forth like a plugged toilet is a testimony to what the world values these days. It’s a sad state of affairs IMO.”

    “I can only be responsible for my own words, RW, and I can tell you that many Christians are sincere and loving. Most, at least the ones I know.”

    Back to back statements and totally ignorant of the irony. What can I say?

  40. I am afraid RW… is correct. There are those who call themselves Christians, but really don’t act like it.

    I’m thinking mostly along the lines of such people as David Koresh (Waco), Jim Jones (Jonestown), Charlie Manson (Tate & Labianca murders), and more These are glaring examples of Christian hypocrisy. These kinds of people use Christianity for their own evil purposes.

    Then there are the lesser evils, such as Jim Bakker (Assemblies of God), Jimmy Swaggart (AoG), and Ted Haggard (New Life Church).

    And then there is Fred Phelps (Westboro Baptist) who really fits into a category of his own.

    But, there are also ordinary folks like you and I here on this blog, who say we believe in Christ and Christianity, and then slip-up and start acting not Christ-like at all. Some of us catch ourselves and stop doing that, some don’t. The point is, the folks on this blog, and other forums like this, are nowhere near the worst examples such as those listed above, and more.

    Even though we are Christians, we are still only human, and sometimes we do mess-up. I know I have, and I apologize for that.

    We have to keep ourselves from falling into the so-called Christian rhetoric that sometimes takes on a life of its own and swallows good people up into it.

    Once we recognize that we have stepped over the line, we have to make sure to catch ourselves so that we don’t do it again. And we must do that no matter what others may be saying or doing. We have to be true to ourselves and our beliefs, and not get caught up in the crowd. That’s kind of what being a real-life Christian is all about. We are not perfect, we know that, but we catch ourselves and then we try to be better.

  41. P.S. I like Garofalo and Griffith. I think they are really funny.

  42. muckibr – as one that was active in the Christian religion in the past, I could have called myself a “Christian”. Today, my faith is not limited to one path, as I recognize that I’m really dealing with a matter to which I don’t know the complete answer and the quest is more important than attaching myself to symbolism.

    Religion does more to destroy faith than anything, in my mind. It fools us into thinking that we have finally arrived and have the answers.

    I think back to an entertainer I saw at Unity Church who shared that his 80 year old Lutheran father asked him what Unity Church was. His answer to Dad was “It’s a place where I go to have my answers questioned”.

    That, I can understand. Most Evangelicals will tell you that Unity is “wrong”, biblically. Whatever THAT means.

  43. aislander says:

    Surprised, sozo? Traditional culture needs to be destroyed before it can be supplanted. Making it politically incorrect is one method; polluting it (Garofolo, Griffith, Maher, Franken, etc.) is another. It’s kind of like preparing a patient for a noxious rather than salutary bone-marrow transplant…

  44. As far as I can recall Garofalo, Griffith, Maher and especially Franken are all against the fraud off Political Correctness.

    So let me get this straight, by saying that “Making it politically incorrect is one method.” are you saying things should always be Politically Correct or PC and we like to say?

  45. aislander says:

    No. I’m saying that a civil society is stable when it is civil. I know there is a fine line between insisting on public decorum, and the mind control of PC, but it is a line worth maintaining.

    Decorum: good. PC: bad.

  46. aislander says:

    I meant to type “thought control,” rather than “mind control.” Mesmero IS a fascist, though…

  47. Okay, decorum, or as I would call it – common courtesy, is good. Agreed. Political Correctness or PC, not necessarily bad, but usually kind of fake.

    I am totally against “thought control” as well, so no argument there. But let’s go back to your comment to sozo about “Traditional culture needs to be destroyed before it can be supplanted.”

    Do you really think some atheist(s) complaining about Christmas decorations on public buildings is a conspiracy to destroy traditional American culture? How?

  48. took14theteam says:

    Because it doesn’t hurt them. If they see it, they are not going to suddenly explode. They can just say to themselves that they don’t believe in that and move on. A Christmas tree is not going to convert them.

    And I will take a shot at the other side now. I don’t appreciate the knock on my door on a Saturday morning and the people asking me to pray with them. This is the 21st century and I am pretty sure everyone is aware of religion now. If the people want it, they can seek it out.

    And Griffith on the D list is/was very funny (to me anyway).

    And one more thing. Have you noticed some of the sitcoms now are going out of their way to use the names of the genitalia in the show? What the hell is that for? I don’t find it appropriate, but I am not calling Hollywood and telling them to knock it off. I just turn the channel if I don’t like it.

  49. “Traditional culture”

    You mean the good old days of a good beating to assure a good day’s work? How traditional would you like to be? How far back in history?

    I love how someone’s idea of traditional culture is wrapped up in their philosophies and discludes that which they oppose.

    Satire is appreciated from Dennis Miller and castigated from Bill Maher.

  50. muckibr – my earlier attempt to share this didn’t post.

    I’m neither an Atheist nor a practicing Christian, although in the past I was active in a church. I find religion to be the biggest stumbling block for spirituality.

    I recall a performer at Unity Church once saying he told his Lutheran father that Unity was the place he went to have his answers questioned.

    Now THAT I can identify with.

  51. took14theteam says:

    Thank you old_lefty for the walk down memory lane.

    Nice of you to infer the race card. If I hadn’t seen a picture of you, I would guess that you were a bitter black man with a huge chip on his shoulder blaming everyone else for your current life.

  52. aislander says:

    RW98something writes: “You mean the good old days of a good beating to assure a good day’s work…”

    I’m pleased to see you have such a negative and stereotyped view of America. It reinforces one of MY stereotypes about lefties!

  53. RW… Thanks for sharing. I have somewhat of a similar view of religion, in that I have come to feel that organized religion is not for me. I have a lot of faith in Jesus. My feeling is that even if he weren’t the Son of God, then he would still be a good example of a person for us all to emulate. If people just tried to be more like him, this world would be a much better place for all of us to live in.

  54. These rants about atheists – without any specific crimes against Christmas being cited – are just a rationalization of the venting of hatred towards atheists. These “Christians” are using a feast of the birth of the god of peace and love to bash those they hate.

    Research shows that atheists are the most hated group in America
    http://newsjunkiepost.com/2009/09/19/research-finds-that-atheists-are-most-hated-and-distrusted-minority/

  55. Oh, I see. Aislander doesn’t want THAT traditional culture.

    How about the one prior to the Civil Rights Movement of the 1960s? Is that contemporary enough for you?

    These traditionalists are so picky about history.

  56. muckibr – Can you imagine Christianity if Christians acted like Jesus?

  57. Rw… Yes, I can imagine it, and hope for it and pray for it, but it may never happen here on this Earth. But, if it did, I think beerBoy would be happy to know that if Christians did start acting like Jesus all the time, then there would be absolutely no Atheist-bashing at all, because Jesus loves all people, even atheists.

    Love your neighbor as you love yourself = Do unto others as you would have them do unto you.

  58. There is nothing contradictory in my comment about most Christians being loving and sincere and my observations about Griffith and Garafelo unless you are shallow enough to think that love means total acceptance of everything done by everybody.

    I believe there are many who actually think that’s what love is, including it would seem a few here.

    Here’s a question for you: As a mother, if I love my daughter and she suddenly starts spewing sewer water from her ruby red lips, do I smile and commend her for her wit, or do I tell her that I find her comment vulgar?

    Which is more loving RW and muckibr?

    May I suggest that you go back and re-read “all” the passages about Jesus before you attempt to turn him into your own little person Good Witch Glenda?

    What do you make of the Jesus who said he came to drive a sword between a mother and her daughter? Doesn’t sound very loving, but by golly Jesus actually said it, so maybe you can help me understand?

    For those of you who find Griffith and Garafalo funny, so be it. You’re probably big fans of fake vomit and whoopi cushions too. There are varying degrees of humor in this world.

  59. sozo, calling Janeane Garofalo a “hateful little sprite” is, um, what would you call that, a “judgement” call. And you do recall what Jesus said about judging others right?

    Judge not, lest ye be judged.

    Pluck not the twig from your bother’s (or sister’s) eye, until first you remove the log from your own.

    That’s okay, because sometimes I do that kind of thing myself, and it’s not any more or less un-Chiristian if I do it than it is if you do it. We just have to try to not do it if we want to be more like Christ.

    I don’t get your “Good Witch Glenda” reference. Doesn’t seem to make much sense to me.

    As regards Matthew 10:34-39 and your sword reference. I don’t think Jesus meant a literal sword. That was a figure of speech. What I think He meant, and I may be wrong, was that He wanted all men, women, sons, daughters, etc.. to obey the first and most important commandment to love God before all others. The sword was a metaphor. I hope that helps you understand. Some daughters followed Jesus in opposition to what their mothers wanted them too, thus the figurative sword separated them, but NOT a real one.

    I still like Janeane Garofalo and Kathy Griffith a lot better than Dennis Miller who has turn rabid right-winger, or even Steve Carell who is just not funny at all. I also like Jon Stewart and Stephen Colbert, but never could appreciate fake vomit, plastic dog doo or whoopee cushions. So, now you know.

  60. Gee thanks for the lesson on metaphor, muckibr, but you’ve missed my point entirely. Love is not always condoning. Sometimes, “real” love hurts, if you’re doing it right. Sometimes it means confronting someone, even holding another accountable and being held accountable for one’s choices. My snarky Good Witch Glenda comments was borne out of frustration towards those of you who insist on painting Jesus as some sort of milquetoast wimp who looked the other way when folks made lousy choices. Even the woman he saved from being stoned, he told to go and “sin no more” thus confirming that sexual promiscuity and adultery were in fact, judged by Jesus as sin.

    As for the rest of us judging others, please distinguish between making a sound judgment about something and “judging” others in the sense you are speaking. The difference is crucial.

    I imagine that even Garafalo and Griffith would “judge” their humor as vulgar. Griffith in particular seems quite proud of it and it has earned her a lot of money and celebrity, which says more about the general population than I want to think about at the moment. What was once considered “potty humor” in middle school is now making Hollywood producers millions of dollars a year.

    Finally, as you might expect, I find Dennis Miller quite funny. His wit is too lofty for some, including me at times, but he can’t help it. He’s just smarter than most. And his wit distinguishes him from those comedians who default to vulgarity to get a laugh.

  61. But sozo, do you at least understand that Jesus was not talking about putting a real sword between the mother and daughter?

  62. “Finally, as you might expect, I find Dennis Miller quite funny. His wit is too lofty for some, including me at times, but he can’t help it. He’s just smarter than most. And his wit distinguishes him from those comedians who default to vulgarity to get a laugh.”

    Having read Miller’s book “I rant, there for I am”, I can attest to his lack of lofty and reliance upon sophomoric humor directed at Bill Clinton’s affair with Monica Lewinsky. A review line from “good reads” – “If Monica Lewinsky jokes are timeless, this is the book for you!”

    One person’s wit is another’s potty humor.

    One of Miller’s “lofty wits” – “Santa is very jolly because he knows where all the bad girls live.”

    Makes me want to live 7th grade all over again.

  63. P.S. I really think in a 1 on 1 political/comedy duel, Jon Stewart, or even Stephen Colbert, would rip Dennis Miller a new one. I’d really like to see that.

  64. Far be it from me to debunk, but will someone please point out what is “vulgar” (using the correct definition of the word) about any of these quotes –

    http://www.brainyquote.com/quotes/authors/j/janeane_garofalo.html

    muckibr – Colbert would make Miller look like a fool and Miller would be thinking that they agreed.

  65. aislander says:

    If I saw Janeane Garofolo walking down the street and judged her on her appearance to be a “hateful little sprite,” that would be something with which Jesus might cavil, but if I said the same thing based on her behavior, I flatter myself that Jesus would congratulate me for speaking the truth. Not judgment; merely observation. Two different things…

    (By the way, I can’t STAND that bulbous, corrugated forehead of hers, but I wouldn’t make any moral judgments based on it. I really think I came to despise the forehead because of its owner. Can you imagine the Area 51-like babies produced by a union of Garofolo and Paul Begala? Heaven forfend!)

  66. “painting Jesus as some sort of milquetoast wimp who looked the other way when folks made lousy choices.”

    I never painted Jesus like that ever, and don’t know any real Christian person who would. It was no milktoast wimp who threw the moneychangers out of the Temple of The Lord. It was no milktoast wimp who withstood the whipping by the Romans, crown of thorns, carrying the cross, and nails pounded through hands and feet. Jesus was no milktoast wimp in any respect. But, you have to consider that as God the Son, he had all the power of the universe in his hands and could have wiped the world clean at a mere thought. Instead, he endured great pain and suffering for our salvation. That’s more courage than anyone in history has ever shown.

  67. “The only difference between group sex and group therapy is that in group therapy you hear about everyone’s problems, and in group sex you see them.”

    That was Miller’s award winning joke. He won $500 for that one.

    I’m sure glad it was witting rather than vulgar.

    It appears that Aislander is competing with Sensenbrenner for the ad hominem comment of the month.

  68. Talk about your potty-mouth comedians. I did a search for Dennis Miller jokes, and many cannot be posted here given his frequent dropping of the f-bomb. I know a lot of comedians, even Jon Stewart, use the f-word too, but I don’t recall either Janeane Garofalo or Kathy Griffith using it like Miller does.

    But, here is a good Dennis Miller joke we can all appreciate:

    President Bush gave his first-ever presidential radio address in both English and Spanish. Reaction was mixed, however, as people were trying to figure out which one was which.

    Ba-dump-dum!

    I’m looking for Miller jokes of Christmas. Has anyone found any?

  69. Well shame on me for not doing a thoroughgoing search of Dennis Miller’s jokes. “Santa is very jolly because he knows where all the bad girls live.” Why, that’s just gutter talk.

    Maybe some of you don’t understand wit. (not witting btw)

    As for Miller and Colbert, I’m guessing they probably have mutual respect for one another with regard to IQ. I’d love to see them on stage together, actually.

    muckibr, please don’t lose any sleep over the metaphor issue. Of course I understand it’s a metaphor. I presumed that anyone reading it knew that. My point was that Jesus clearly understood that there would be conflict among people when it comes to age-old questions of right and wrong AND for that matter with how the world would see him.

  70. Well sozo, all I can say is that the way you original wrote your comment:

    “What do you make of the Jesus who said he came to drive a sword between a mother and her daughter? Doesn’t sound very loving, but by golly Jesus actually said it, so maybe you can help me understand?”

    it sure seemed like you were under the impression Jesus literally suggested driving a real sword between mother and daughter.

    So, I’m glad we have at least resolved that issue.

  71. aislander says:

    I think Miller tends toward libertarianism on cultural issues, so you can’t really throw the “hypocrite” bomb at him for doing edgy comedy, although I don’t know how many of the examples cited here occurred since his political road-to-Damascus moment…

  72. That would be interesting to note aislander, but I’m sure he remains bawdy which is different than vulgar. Too refined a distinction for some folks to grasp though.

    Uh, Muckibr, apparently I made the mistake of presuming that the metaphor was understood. Having said that, there IS the possibility that Jesus meant it literally, and if he did, then uh-oh what WILL you do then?

  73. sozo, I get the feeling when I read your stuff that you really don’t like Jesus. Do you?

  74. ReadNLearn says:

    Let’s make it fair,

    If Moslems don’t complain about “Merry Christmas” I won’t bring up their Honor Killings.

    If Atheists don’t complain about “Merry Christmas” I won’t bring up the disproportionate number of them that are pedophiles.

    Merry Christmas!

  75. Christmas humor for the not-easily-offended (do not go to this link sozo)
    http://youtu.be/sH3x80aSyGw

    RNL – if you quit making posts like that I won’t perceive you as a disgusting, mouth-breathing, knuckle-dragging, scum sucker. The worst part about your post is that you contaminated the phrase “Merry Christmas” by using it in such a hateful manner.

    Any citations to support your claimed link between pederasty and atheism? It would seem to me that, with the numerous cases of Priests, Ministers, Rabbis, “Christian” coaches, Fundamentalist Mormons, etc., the link seems more connected between the more overtly religious amongst us.

  76. By the way, I can’t STAND that bulbous, corrugated forehead of hers,

    Not surprising that you would comment on a woman’s physical appearance. Maggie Thatcher is about the only woman that the Right can value in spite of her non-Playboy model appearance.

  77. “If Atheists don’t complain about “Merry Christmas” I won’t bring up the disproportionate number of them that are pedophiles.”

    Pedophilia usually takes place (1)in the family or extended family (2)in church.

    Take for example, the pastor that was fondling men while performing baptisms in a church in Bellevue. The cases of priests seem to numerous to mention.

    I won’t bring up ReadNLearn’s ignorance on this subject if he or she quits posting false statements.

  78. (not witting btw)

    Please don’t lose any sleep over my made up word. I should have used quotation marks

    It gets curiouser and curiouser.

  79. ReadNLearn:

    Don’t let your lack of knowledge about pedophilia stand in the way of making yourself look foolish.

    The #2 place that pedophilia takes place is a church. Home wins the #1 position.

  80. Obviously, I am a failure at communication muckibr. Do I like Jesus?
    Well, my feelings about him might change with the whims of human emotion actually, BUT it doesn’t matter. He’s not my buddy, he’s my LORD. Faith means doing what is contrary to your desire if that’s what God demands of you. It doesn’t matter if I am pleased with everything God does or everything he allows to happen. He is God. I am not.

    Let me ask you an analagous question? When a child gets told “no” by his mother or father and he cannot imagine why he must take no for an answer, does he “like” his parents in that moment? Nope. He might even exit the room with a loud “I hate you.” But they are his parents, and he is expected to honor their decision and TRUST that maybe they have a good reason for saying no.

    This distinction between liking Jesus and trusting him is important.

  81. muckibr, you never did respond to this other scenario from upthread:

    Here’s a question for you: As a mother, if I love my daughter and she suddenly starts spewing sewer water from her ruby red lips, do I smile and commend her for her wit, or do I tell her that I find her comment vulgar?

  82. Sadly, pedophilia knows no bounds, and it has certainly infected some in the church. That church figures have hidden it is inexcusable.
    But all of this is about human behavior, and yes, even among those who claim to be “made new” in Christ. It’s not the fault of the church itself.

    If there is one thing God insists upon it is individual freedom which means that bad things will continue to happen when humans make wrong choices.

    A lot of jokes have been made about whether God would be a democrat or a republican which is all quite laughable of course. But in the spirit of the “joke” I would have to say that God would most certainly represent the Libertarians!

  83. aislander says:

    No sexism whatsoever, beerBoy, since I threw Paul Begala into the mix as being the potential sire of a race of terrestrial ETs (with Garofolo’s maternal line)…

    Seriously, though, beerBoy, it’s the simulacrum of sincerity while spouting arrant nonsense, causing the forehead to corrugate and emphasize that looming hemisphere, that repulses me…

  84. To claim that Miller has wit (or indeed, any of the current crop of comedians) is truly sad. The old film comedies (with Hepburn, Hudson, Tracy, et al) had witty repartee, Monty Python’s Flying Circus was witty. Current comedy is based upon put-downs and/or “Dumb and Dumberer”-let’s see how stupid people can be, and puerile scatological and/or references to sex – not wit, and not very funny.

    Anyone who celebrates Miller (or Garafolo) as “intelligent” and then complains about Garafolo (or Miller) as being nasty is just laughing because the “comedian” is dumping on the “other side” – not wit, not intelligence, not funny.

  85. While we agree on your assessment about good repartee from the past, I beg to differ when you place Miller and even Garafalo in the puerile/scatalogical genre. That’s a misstep. How do you define wit?

    Where do you place Mark Twain? Will Rogers?

  86. sozo, well I guess if the “sewer water” your daughter is spewing “from her ruby red lips” are quotes from a Dennis Miller routine then I guess you would praise her for her choice in wit. Wouldn’t you?

  87. Mark Twain and Will Rogers were brilliant satirists.

  88. aislander says:

    Appropos of nothing at all: Will Rogers was favorably impressed by Benito Mussolini…

  89. aislander says:

    …as was Cole Porter…

  90. Appropos(sic) of nothing at all

    A very astute self-assessment of your comments.

  91. Inspired by this thread I watched “The Bachelor and the Bobby-soxer” with Myrna Loy, Cary Grant and a teen-aged Shirley Temple last night. Though the set-up was a little creepy (in order to cure Temple’s teenaged infatuation with Grant he was ordered to date her) and speaks of a time when pederasty and statutory rape weren’t in the public’s awareness, the writing and performance was brilliant comedy.

    Current “comedy” writers all too often rely upon crudities, crassness and cruelty rather than wit. They all seem to have watched too many 3 Stooges and too little of the classic screwball comedies.

  92. aislander says:

    It actually WAS apropos of a long-running discussion, beerBoy.

    (The “p” struck twice. Was that worth a “sic?” If you really want me to “sic” your posts every time one is deserved, I will be happy to accommodate you…)

  93. aislander says:

    See, Will Rogers was a populist, a position usually regarded as of the left–and so was Mussolini, by the way. Go figure…

    As for Cole Porter, well…

  94. You are incorrigible.

  95. I guess that explains David Letterman’s style beerBoy .

    Merry Christmas.

  96. DougBenedetti says:

    To all of you who are celebrating a holiday today, “Happy Holidays.” To my Christian friends I wish a very “Merry Christmas.” To my Jewish friends, “Happy Hanukkah.” To anyone celebrating a birthday today, “Happy Birthday.”

  97. Thanks Doug! Our best to Lois!

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