Letters to the Editor

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MARRIAGE: Archbishop gets it wrong

Letter by Ovidio M. Peñalver, Puyallup on April 17, 2012 at 9:13 am with 96 Comments »
April 17, 2012 10:49 am

Last Sunday, our Catholic archbishop distributed a letter to every parish in Western Washington urging Washington’s Catholics to sign the petition for Referendum 74, which would overturn this state’s same-sex marriage law.

As a local physician, I find Referendum 74 incongruous. It has been more than a quarter century since the Academy of Psychiatry removed homosexuality from the list of sexual disorders. My profession has long since accepted homosexuality as a normal expression of human sexuality. To promote healthy, stable relationships within normal sexual expression would strengthen our social fabric.

But beyond this cold, clinical progress, gay marriage can be a model for faithfulness and love many times absent in the status quo. The basis for marriage has always been love, mutual acceptance and fidelity pledged in perpetuity. I have never seen gender included in that definition, and I see no reason to add it now.

The drafters of Referendum 74 have operated on an archaic concept of marriage, on fear and misinformation, or even on hatred and homophobia. It saddens me that my religious leadership has fallen in such a trap. I worry whether it will ever climb out.

Leave a comment Comments → 96
  1. LornaDoone says:

    Your Archbishop was wrong to mix politics with non-profit status, but was we know, there are not many businesses with as much clout as the Catholic Church.

    This is the second time in months that the Catholic Church has stuck out their collective chins and dared the government to take issue.

    It’s time to hit them where it hurts the most – their bank book.

  2. Theefrinker says:

    This was a well-written letter; good job.

  3. “It has been more than a quarter century since the Academy of Psychiatry removed homosexuality from the list of sexual disorders.”

    Well if that’s the case, shoot I’m all in. I just hastily assumed it wasn’t the bastion of mental health to be in a state of distress about one’s sexual orientation, as well as “gender identity disorder” or gender dysphoria.

    In the light of this discovery, I feel we should rewrite all laws with this new precedent of any and every lifestyle and behavior being recognized as a factor to distinguish one population from another. Especially, if the behavior was taken off the crazy list a mere couple decades ago.

    Ethnicity, gender and race/skin color; are benign, immutable traits that have no bearing on an individual’s …… behavior. This will not stand. We must minimize, even mock the long, hard-fought struggles in civil rights history. We must explain to blacks and feminists how their equal status they fought to achieve has been rendered the equivalent of random behaviors.

    It goes without saying that these laws must force others, despite their religious beliefs and Constitutional slant, to recognize any and every behavior and lifestyle as, not only legitimate, but also acceptable.

  4. Ortingmom says:

    Lorna….That means the same thing appies to..Planned Parenthood, Equal Rights WA and others??

  5. orting, you should know that there are different kinds of non-profits and what the church is doing is wrong for its kind of non-profit status.

  6. amber424 says:

    Politics has no business in church Ortingmom, ever.

  7. LornaDoone says:

    Ortingmom – Planned Parenthood and the Catholic Church are entirely two different non-profits. Wasn’t it the Catholic Church that I heard moaning about separation of church and state recently?

    Didn’t you bring up Media Matters last time I suggested this?

  8. LornaDoone says:

    FYI, Ortingmom – the Republican Party is technically a non-profit.

  9. LornaDoone says:

    “Ethnicity, gender and race/skin color; are benign, immutable traits that have no bearing on an individual’s …… behavior”

    So heterosexuality is “behavior”? And all this time you folks have been trying to tell us that heterosexuality is natural (of birth) and homosexuality is a choice (not of birth).

    I’d say you have your explanation twisted beyond the ability to spin.

  10. menopaws says:

    For a church that fostered pedophiles for year and years and years—their views of morality mean absolutely nothing. They have no business preaching any kind of morality……They are sinister, greedy and without any morality. Many, many children were harmed while they looked the other way and allowed these sick people to move from church to church. So, the Archbishop can do or say whatever he wants—–just treat him as you would any other predator and don’t leave any children alone in the room with him or his followers. And, for him to sit in judgement of anyone is just ridiculous……The Catholic Church is a huge predator and should be ignored.

  11. tomwa007 says:

    Time to strip the non profit status of the church.

    A letter from someone on high is all that is needed.

    Seems like the time has come.

  12. averageJoseph says:

    “Politics has no business in church Ortingmom, ever.”

    Rev. Al Sharpton, Rev. Jesse Jackson, Rev. Jeremiah Wright, Rev. John L. Lambert Minister Louis Farrakhan, Rev. Calvin Butts, Rev. Shirley Caesar-Williams , Minister Fred Phelps, Bishop T.D. Jakes, Rev. Otis Moss, …

    Are these people exempt?

  13. I look forward to the day when the Academy of Psychiatry will remove schizophrenia from it’s manual of disorders. One dip of the magic wand and poof! homosexuality is no longer a disease. Oh brave new world that has such people in it.

  14. Pro gay marriage, anti gay marraiage, its should not take up as much news space as it does. That said, I do get offended when the Washington State Senate spends half of its session on the matter. Pushed by Senator Murrey for his own special interest.

    Then the Senate has to have mutiple extended sessions(at our expense) to accomodate for more important business, the budget.

    It would have been better if Murrey and his new “wife” would have respected the States citizens priorities and took care of our needs first rather than impose a schedule to rush through budget legislation to accomodate his own lifestyle.

    The issue should be transparent, but now Murrey and his kind are parading their condoned gay marital status as a badge of honor. Flaunting it to the point of disgrace while we now all have to put up with an 11th hour emergency budget for the State.

  15. How about we hold the rainbow boyz financially accountable for all the healthcare costs that their lifestyle foists on the rest of us? How about they admit that DV is their problem rather than a society problem? How about they just agree to shut up when their legislative hijack gets reversed by the voters?

  16. DavidAnderson says:

    Next up – Transgenders

    Now that same sex marriage has been made legal in Washington, it is worth examining some of the logic that brought this about. One of the Republicans that supported recognizing gay marriage (Senate Bill 6239) is Glenn Anderson (Fall City – King County).

    Announcing that he has “investigated the relevant criteria defining marriage,” Anderson concludes that the “primary purpose of civil marriage remains to provide a neutral and secular foundation for social order and an orderly transfer of property rights.”

    Transgenders can do that.

    Tricia Romano reports Time magazine predicted just last month that transgender people’s legal issues to be the next big civil-rights frontier. And why not? The same premise Anderson uses to defend same sex marriage – that of an “underlying genetic predisposition” – is promulgated by the trans trenders seeking to establish gender identity.

    Anderson says he’s checked the ancient historical record on marriage but in the process has overlooked some of the more recent trends.

    Anderson writes, “little change has occurred in the traditional definition of civil marriage until California authorized no-fault divorce in 1962.” Yes. And then what happened? No-fault divorce, writes Jim Daly of Focus on the Family, “promised to simplify, streamline and decrease the contentiousness surrounding marital breakup. Instead, it only encouraged struggling spouses to throw in the towel. Father’s abandoned their families in droves. Poverty levels skyrocketed. Prison populations increased at dramatic levels, a consequence of kids now growing up without a father in the home.”

    Anderson ignores yet another trend when he writes “Finally, we must ask what the federal judicial criteria for constitutional ‘equal protection under law’ are related to our constitution.” Yes, let’s do that shall we? What constitutional and judicial protections are there for the unborn? In 1973 the Supreme Court legalized abortion in all 50 states. “Supporters,” writes Daly, “heralded a new era of responsibility, where every child would be a wanted child. Tragically, over 48 million babies have now been aborted and the beauty of life has been cheapened as a result, while child abuse has skyrocketed.”

    Taking their cue from such legislative endorsements as Anderson’s for gays and lesbians, transgenders are now strutting their stuff. With Romano’s revelation of “trans supermodels walk(ing) the runways; news stories pop(ing) up every day about transgender rights being trampled on; and people like Chaz Bono outed as a lesbian by the National Enquirer in 1990” there is reason to believe that Anderson’s ‘research’ cannot help but be affected by “the whole celebrity media and tabloid culture kicking into gear.”

    Romano observes, “While it has been 15 years and counting since Ellen DeGeneres came out the cover of Time, helping people start to come around to concepts like gay marriage and gays in the military, trans awareness has grown exponentially, through the Internet’s connectedness.”

    When trend-setters determine truth we’re in trouble.

  17. RLangdon says:

    All of you criticizing the Archbishop for exercising his Free Speech Rights are anti-American. The Archbishop has as much right as anyone else, as an American Citizen to express his political views. If he does not, then all of you should not be allowed to write comments on these forums either. Criticize The Catholic Church and you risk going to hell.

  18. bobcat1a says:

    Don’t worry about the opinion of the Catholic Church; it is a dying organization which will soon be mostly African, except of course for the Pope. The Archbishop has every right to speak his opinion and should have every expectation of catching “holy” hell for his inanity. That’s part of “free speech.”

  19. Frankenchrist says:

    How many little boys has this Archbishop molested? Ho wmany coverups has he participated in?

    Why should an old man who has vowed never to get married even have an opinion on marriage?

  20. RLangdon, with ” Criticize The Catholic Church and you risk going to hell.”

    I can’t tell whether you are quoting a Monty Python skit or the Spanish Inquisition.

    Either way, your comments gave me a good laugh, thanks.

  21. If church and state must not mingle, why does God get mentioned in legal papers so often? “Endowed by our Creator”, “So help me God”.
    Seems that having a common belief or “religion” is what motivated the founding fathers to create this great country. It is paramount that as a nation, we continue to follow the principles and wisdom that created the common fabric of our society.
    Government at it’s core is in support of the people with order and consequence. The common fear throughout time has been the undetermined penalty for wrongdoing. Just as at church, you are taught the rules and given the consequence. Then you are given free will to make your own choices. One noticeable difference is that the church makes the penalties of bad choices due after death, whereas the State makes penalties due while you are alive. Wouldn’t it be interesting if it were the other way around?

  22. rooster_02 says:

    Tax the catholic cult.

  23. “Rev. Al Sharpton, Rev. Jesse Jackson, Rev. Jeremiah Wright, Rev. John L. Lambert Minister Louis Farrakhan, Rev. Calvin Butts, Rev. Shirley Caesar-Williams , Minister Fred Phelps, Bishop T.D. Jakes, Rev. Otis Moss, …
    Are these people exempt?”

    Add Martin Luther King to this list, aj, and how about D. Bohnoeffer. While the latter was not an American, I wonder how many of you here would suggest that he should have kept his moral opinions to himself rather than die a martyr’s death in a German prison camp?

    I wonder if any of the usual suspects on these threads will address your question?

  24. As for looking to the Academy of Psychiatry for moral guidance, really?

  25. RLangdon says:

    And sozo, none of those people listed are Catholics.

  26. I think the Archbishop gets it wrong and perverts Jesus’ words of love, equality and fairness, but people can believe or say these things and try to influence opinion on these “issue” things, even from the pulpit.

    I remember hearing almost every Sunday how interracial marriage was an abomination and against God’s will and how liquor by the drink laws, if passed, would bring about the destruction of America when these were being debated, to cite just two.

    What they can’t do, and still keep their tax-free status, is get involved in partisan politics, and many churches, not just the Catholic, have edged ever closer to that divide, if they haven’t already gone over it.

    Several Bishops slipped over that line when they called for a fight against Obama in the upcoming election, instead of saying they were against the insurance-for-contraception policy. The Catholic League, which is a tax-free not-for-profit charity recently called for a “War on Obama” in its press release.

    Rev. Larry Snyder, President of Catholic Charities USA said: “This is the first time in history that the entire body of American Catholic bishops and priests have united to speak against a sitting president by name, and promised civil disobedience.”

    If they want to speak out against Obama (or any candidate), they need to lose their tax-free status.

  27. LornaDoone says:

    “Politics has no business in church Ortingmom, ever.”
    Rev. Al Sharpton, Rev. Jesse Jackson, Rev. Jeremiah Wright, Rev. John L. Lambert Minister Louis Farrakhan, Rev. Calvin Butts, Rev. Shirley Caesar-Williams , Minister Fred Phelps, Bishop T.D. Jakes, Rev. Otis Moss, …
    Are these people exempt?”

    WHAT CHURCH do they represent, Joeseppi? You actually threw T.D. Jakes into the mix? He is about as conservative as they come. Fred Phelps?

    Look up the rule on the IRS website.

  28. LornaDoone says:

    I wonder if any of the usual suspects on these threads will address your question?

    Always willing to do your homework, sozo. You seem to lack in that department. Probably gets in the way of your comment critiques.

    http://www.irs.gov/charities/charitable/article/0,,id=163395,00.html

    You’ll have to click on the link and do your own reading.

  29. LornaDoone says:

    I had to laugh at an old comment by Barney Frank, circa 2005, being interviewed by Bill Mahr –

    “I’ve been keeping track of the number of heterosexual marriages I’ve ruined.”

  30. aislander says:

    Since this nation may not have been brought into existence if the churches had not been politically active before the Revolutionary War, I don’t see why they should be extorted into forgoing their rights under the 1st Amendment.

    Why was that rule written into the tax code in the first place?

    Certainly there are several notable 501c3 entities that are politically active in the extreme (left…), but for some reason, people are concerned only with speech in churches and by clerics…

  31. bobtanderson says:

    Freedom of Religion is built into U.S. Constitutional Law. Shouldn’t churches that choose to sanctify marriages between gays and lesbians be allowed to do so? Why should the religious bias of other churches prohibit my church’s decision to sanctify these loving relationships?

  32. LornaDoone says:

    Oh, as usual, aislander miscontrues the facts.

    As to “Certainly there are several notable 501c3 entities that are politically active in the extreme (left…)” – let’s start with the Heritage Foundation.

    I’m so glad we are going to cite pre-revolutionary war activities as a reason for avoiding taxation in today’s world.

    Maybe that is a good reason to have slavery again. Those darned abolitionists just didn’t understand God’s idea for the black man circa 1700s.

  33. LornaDoone says:

    Bob – don’t you get it?

    It’s OK to have laws that violate the freedom of religion that isn’t the loving God that murders people and sends them to damnation for loving someone? That is not a violation of freedom of religion.

  34. aislander says:

    Gee…I was under the impression that slavery is generally a bad thing, and since it was brought up in this context, I should point out that churches were the driving force behind the abolitionist movement (political, right?).

    And wasn’t the formation of the United States a good thing? Odd that some would imply that it compared only to the institution of slavery…

  35. aislander says:

    bobanderson: Any church can sanctify anything it wants to sanctify. “Sanctify” is, I believe, a religious term, not a legal one…

  36. aislander says:

    Some people seem compelled to post dictionary definitions. Others should more often consult a dictionary before posting, but I’m not really talking about crafty and his alts right now…

    For the former, I have this from The World English Dictionary:

    “3. to sanction (an action or practice) as religiously binding: to sanctify a marriage”

  37. Along with the abolition movement, Christian leaders were also responsible for the beginnings of the PTA (designed to protect and advocate for children in school) and it was all part of the temperance movement which was very much informed by the church. You cannot separate church from politics unless church is just a social activity for you. When your church life is rooted in your faith in God, what God says about things will inform your political positions on things. Reasonable people understand this.

    And I didn’t realize you all were just taking aim at Roman Catholics in this thread. How convenient.

    Jackson, Sharpton, Wright, et. al all claim to represent the Christian church; claim to be spokesmen for Jesus Christ. No? If Wright’s church were any more political, it would be more of political forum than a church…oh wait, it is!

  38. averageJoseph says:

    The aislander eating Hill the extraordinaire‘s breakfast and lunch. It would be more fun were it not like taking candy from a baby.

  39. For those of you who don’t know, “the Church” does not mean an institution or a denomination. Capital C Church means the entire body of those who believe in the Triune God.

  40. aislander says:

    Thanks for pointing out, sozo, that concern about political speech in churches seems to be focused only on conservative speech.

    Social justice churches are exempt from that concern as well as from taxation…

  41. Aislander – pray enlighten me –

    What Churches were politically active prior to the Revolution and which ones preached loyalty to the Crown?

    Churches in the South were almost totally in support of slavery (at least publicly) – those that weren’t usually got new ministers.

    In fact, several churches (such as the Baptists) split into northern and southern factions over the slavery issue.

    A church may decline to sanctify any marriage – and same sex marriage laws will not change that.

    States only issue licenses to wed, and some state officials (judges, justice of the peace etc) are empowered to perform CIVIL UNIONS (aka civil marriages).

    In other words – Same Sex Marriage Laws deal only with the secular and civil but does not change the religious aspects of marriage.

  42. aislander says:

    …as usual, xring misses the point…

    I’m having a strong feeling of deja doone, but in this case the observation makes sense…

  43. aislander says:

    Oh, and enlightening you is above my pay grade. (OMG: deja ‘bama!)

  44. averageJoseph says:

    LMAO!

    deja doone

  45. So aislander, because the Quakers were active in the abolitionist movement you are contending that lets the Catholic Church off the hook for everything they have done? The child abuse cover-up scandal, excommunicating Galileo, antisemitism during WWII, the Inquisition….

  46. There IS one very strong, positive point about same sex marriages that we never hear about. Such a union would never, ever breed a new generation of LiberalNutcases! :D

  47. About outdated information, bBoy (mentioned on another thread) perhaps you should get up to speed on the Galileo myth:

    “In the book, Galileo Goes to Jail and Other Myths about Science and Religion, we find this myth just isn’t true. The book is a number of different essays from respected historians and published by Harvard University Press. So, this book is not ideologically driven, especially when you consider the essays on ID.

    Anyway, we find out that the only part of the Galileo myth that is true was that he was “imprisoned”. Which we find, consisted of house arrest in an Italian Villa by the sea where he was allowed to entertain visitors, had lavish meals and write outside letters.

    Actually, the church was originally receptive to Galileo (and Kepler’s) research. The Vatican gave him a lot of kuddos and then sent him on his way. Again, the pope was one of Galileo’s patrons. What actually happend is that powerful academics around the pope got huffy and started accusing Galileo of teaching heresy.”

  48. The above notes are from The Thomas Society, written by a man named John Weir (though I think I’m spelling his name wrong.) It’s not important that you view him as an expert, but note that he is taking this information from a well-respected text published by Harvard University Press.

    I have been aware of the way this story has been distorted and used against the church for many years; surprised that so many others still accept the distortion as reality.

  49. LornaDoone says:

    Dcr – all of the conservative terrorists – KKK, et al – were born to heterosexual couples

    Of course they aren’t nutcases, are they? ;)

  50. LornaDoone says:

    Don’t want to discuss the political activism by the Heritage Foundation, aislander? I can understand why.

    Joseppi didn’t answer to my challenge about the churches represented his laundry list of pastors. Nothing there either.

    Aislander, I’ll explain this just once – my analogy to slavery was SARCASM. You see, I find your allegations about religious political activism, PRIOR to the formation of the IRS to be rather ridiculous (your standard MO). You see, as a country we have PROGRESSED, thus grown ups have to accept that you can’t have your cake and eat it too.

    The Catholic Church in one hand, wants the “government” to be hands off in terms of an policy that MIGHT place them (as if they don’t have the choice) in a position of being hypocritical about their practices, but in the next breath they want to be part of the policy making.

    I have a great idea. If you don’t like the IRS laws concerning churches, why don’t you try to change it and see how the citizens of the United States feel about it.

  51. LornaDoone says:

    “If Wright’s church were any more political, it would be more of political forum than a church…oh wait, it is!”

    Yeah. The IRS avoids Wright’s church because Obama The Muslim was a member there and he tells them to leave the church alone.

    I can tell that sozo didn’t digest one word of the IRS law and is off on a Conservative (with a capital C) rant about said church.

    For example, certain voter education activities (including presenting public forums and publishing voter education guides) conducted in a non-partisan manner do not constitute prohibited political campaign activity. In addition, other activities intended to encourage people to participate in the electoral process, such as voter registration and get-out-the-vote drives, would not be prohibited political campaign activity if conducted in a non-partisan manner.

    The Conservatives (with a capital C) have made Rev. Wright’s church political and a household word. They take a 90 minute sermon, extract a dozen words and turn it into a political issue.

  52. LornaDoone says:

    Since someone wants to bring this up, let’s examine with a little more depth, Wright’s famous sermon:

    No, no, no, not God bless America. God d*mn America (that’s in the Bible) for killing innocent people. God d*mn America for treating her citizens as less than human. God d*mn America as long as she tries to act like she is God and she is supreme. The United States government has failed the vast majority of her citizens of African descent.

    I don’t find liberal or conservative politics in the above statement, just a relection of a man who has lived several decades in America, served in the armed forces, tended to a President and reaped the outcomes of who and what he is.

    If a Conservative tries to tell me that they don’t disagree with anything in America, I’ll laugh so hard that my coffee will shoot out of my nose. Take a listen to the reflections of American life by Pat Robertson or John Hagee. Hear what they think of gay Americans or Americans that don’t buy into their particular brand of Christianity.

  53. Ailander – I’m not the one missing the point, I am the one pointing out that you missed it.

    déjà vu all over.

  54. sozo, just for my enlightenment, where did you get the rule:

    “For those of you who don’t know, “the Church” does not mean an institution or a denomination. Capital C Church means the entire body of those who believe in the Triune God.”

    Is that a Catholic thing? Is it a specific translation of the Bible thing? Does it exclude Christians who do not believe in the Trinity, like Oneness Pentacostals and other denominations, many LDS, Church of Christ, Unitarians, etc?

    I know that in almost all Bible translations “church”-containing verses are all translated using a small “c”.

  55. sozo – In 2000, Pope John Paul II issued a formal apology for all the mistakes committed by some Catholics in the last 2,000 years of the Catholic Church’s history, including the trial of Galileo among others. Are you saying that JPII was misinformed?

    Galileo was found guilty, and the sentence of the Inquisition, issued on 22 June 1633
    * Galileo was found “vehemently suspect of heresy,” namely of having held the opinions that the Sun lies motionless at the center of the universe, that the Earth is not at its centre and moves, and that one may hold and defend an opinion as probable after it has been declared contrary to Holy Scripture. He was required to “abjure, curse, and detest” those opinions.
    * He was sentenced to formal imprisonment at the pleasure of the Inquisition.[40] On the following day this was commuted to house arrest, which he remained under for the rest of his life.
    * His offending Dialogue was banned; and in an action not announced at the trial, publication of any of his works was forbidden, including any he might write in the future

    # , Finocchiaro (1989, p.288–293). Finocchiaro’s translation of the Inquisition’s judgment against Galileo is available online. “Vehemently suspect of heresy” was a technical term of canon law and did not necessarily imply that the Inquisition considered the opinions giving rise to the verdict to be heretical. The same verdict would have been possible even if the opinions had been subject only to the less serious censure of “erroneous in faith” (Fantoli, 2005, p.140; Heilbron, 2005, pp.282-284).
    # ^ Finocchiaro (1989, pp.38, 291, 306). Finocchiaro’s translation of the Inquisition’s judgement against Galileo is available on-line.

  56. averageJoseph says:

    LMAO… if you’re a dooner and you get spanked in front of your friends… claim sarcasm.

  57. Tuddo – I always associated Church (is in The Church) with the Roman Catholic Church, and church as the collective form including all Christian faiths and dominations.

  58. LornaDoone says:

    “spanked in front of your friends?”

    How infantile can we get? As if anyone would really want to revert back to slavery. Of course, I forget I’m talking to CONs here.

    I’m betting within about a month we’ll see a new name whining about “someone done me wrong”.

  59. RLangdon says:

    You should know how “infantile” it can get on these forums LornaD. You are far and above the most infantile of commenters here.

  60. xring, I had never seen “The C hurch” used the way sozo did. Since I was Baptist, I certainly would not have associated “The Church” with Catholicism. My denomination always taught that the “Cult of Mary” was not even Christian, and they wouldn’t recognize anyone as Christian who was not baptized by immersion.

    The Catholic Church doesn’t believe anyone but people who have been baptized into their denomination is a true Christian, and Pope Benedict just officially reiterated that other communities of people couldn’t even call themselves a church (except for Orthodox, which he said was “defective”), so I still don’t know who lumps all Trinitarian denominations into an entity called “The Church”.

    http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/19692094/ns/world_news-europe/t/pope-other-denominations-not-true-churches/

  61. “spanked in front of your friends?”

    How infantile can we get?

    Jimm has, on more than one occasion expressed this fantasy of his. I suppose that infantile is the most innocent way one could phrase this little obsession…..

  62. I understand that, given the title given the original letter, most bloggers would focus on the Catholic Church or just express anti-gay sentiments….but there are such beautiful parts of this letter not mentioned.

    “But beyond this cold, clinical progress, gay marriage can be a model for faithfulness and love many times absent in the status quo. The basis for marriage has always been love, mutual acceptance, and fidelity pledged in perpetuity. I have never seen gender included in that definition and I see no reason to add it now.”

    Thank you, Dr. Penalver, for those simple truths.

  63. averageJoseph says:

    How infantile can we get? LOL… more rhetorical self deprecating sarcasm from the dooner/hill.

    …and his tailgating pal arts/moderate/Butch “I was beat up at Treasure Island” buddyboy.

    LMAO…

    b&&rB@y says:
    October 17, 2010 at 1:48 pm
    Idaho is so thoroughly Rightist it really isn’t that interesting politically…….although…..Governor Butch Otter (his name seems like a gay bestiality porn star) .

    Ummm… here’s your sign

  64. aislander says:

    So…if advocating for the formation of the United States was a good thing–done by churches–and advocating for the abolition of slavery was a good thing–done largely by churches–WHAT was the rationale for using the IRS to muzzle churches?

  65. I see you can get even more infantile….

    I’m not embarrassed by that post – I still think he has a funny name.

    As I have pointed out since – before becoming Governor, Butch Otter won the Mr. Tight Jeans contest. However, he has done at least one thing that I applaud – as a freshman Representative he voted No on the PATRIOT Act.

    You still are making things up – I never posted as “moderate” and I never wrote that “I was beat up at Treasure Island” (I wrote about the story about sailors who were stationed at TI who would troll the Castro District in order to find a young gay man to beat up). (If I had posted what you claim – you could have found it in your archives)

    But then….the fact that you are so obsessed with me – creating imaginary names and stories about me – focusing upon my career and any and all posts I have written that have any reference to homosexuality is fitting for someone who has also made references to keeping gerbils in private places.

    Jimm – you may think you are embarrassing me by your obsessive archiving and reposting of my quotes. You might want to rethink this – other posters have noted your “crush” on me…..

  66. aislander – the formation of the US was done by Churches?

    I was unaware that the Continental Congress was a church!

  67. “As for looking to the Academy of Psychiatry for moral guidance”

    Why look anywhere for moral guidance?
    Can’t you stand on your own two feet?

  68. “the formation of the United States was a good thing–done by churches–and advocating for the abolition of slavery was a good thing–done largely by churches”

    How is it that you think you can just make stuff like this up?

  69. “Jackson, Sharpton, Wright, et. al all claim to represent the Christian church;”

    So do all the televangelists that have been imprisoned over the years, whats your point, they are ‘political’?
    The pope isn’t political?
    Do you have your eyes open at all??

  70. When it gets right down to it, I could care less about any of this. Except for the enjoyment of watching LocalLibs cringe and squirm when an opinion is shared that might detract from their mantra…..

    But I’d get really nervous if I walked into a place where a bunch of weirdos were spanking each other!!!

  71. Perhaps I took liberty in my use of “capital C church” but I did so without meaning to. In my lifetime, I’ve understood this expression to mean all believers who, for want of a new description, believe what is in The Apostles Creed which refers to “the holy catholic church” where catholic means universal (not the Roman Catholic branch of the church).
    I am aware that different groups take widely different views of the various branches and denominations of the the church. My point was this, that Sharpton, Wright, et. al. claim to be part of the larger church that believes in The Triune God…Father Son and Holy Spirit. Is this not true?

    As for this remark: “The Conservatives (with a capital C) have made Rev. Wright’s church political and a household word. They take a 90 minute sermon, extract a dozen words and turn it into a political issue.” …

    you, Lorna, are beyond naive if you fail to reconize the political ethos of Wright’s church. Even he and his members would probably agree that they address political issues routinely.

  72. …..ESPECIALLY if Kluwer is smiling!!!!!

  73. averageJoseph says:

    Of course you’re not bB. That’s the point.

  74. sozo, Trinity Church of Christ, Wright’s church, moved from being an offshoot of the Congregationalist’s when the Nation of Islam was drawing blacks away from Christianity and became the most influential and most powerful voice for equality of blacks.

    At the time, Congregationalists taught that all people are equal in God’s eyes, but blacks should accept their role in society and move toward gradual, not sudden change in social equality. True freedom could only come in the afterlife. They certainly shouldn’t use civil diobediance in a polite society.

    Malcom X shook all of that up when he proclaimed Christianity as “the white man’s religion”, and huge numbers of blacks agreed. Christians were making little headway in supporting civil rights for blacks, and in many areas, Christians used Christianity, the Bible and other Christian power and symbols as the basis for saying blacks should not have equal rights.

    Wright’s immediate predecessor, an interim pastor who had to determine whether to try to salvage what little remained of a church that had lost most of its membership to Islam, disband it or move it in another direction. To counter the idea that Christianity and being black were incompatible, Trinity’s pastor adopted black liberation theology and coined the phrase that it still uses: “Unashamedly Black and Unapologetically Christian”.

    Even though black liberation theology had existed for a long time, it was not predominate until about this time, the late 1950’s and early 1960’s.

    Wright was one of the most successful early on in gaining support for the belief that blacks, especially poor blacks, in America could be Christians. He did that by focusing on Jesus (not the Triune God) and the role Jesus played as a religious leader seeking justice for the oppressed.

    Even Vatican II took note of liberation theology and tried to use it in a moderate way for political results in Latin America and other places where oppression was rampant.

    So, you are right that Wright’s church has a lot of “political” issues it speaks out on, since oppression by the majority in power and how Jesus gave us a role model on how to deal with that oppression and how to treat all people equally is one of their biggest themes.

  75. aislander says:

    beerBoy writes (glibly): “The formation of the US was done by churches?

    “I was unaware that the Continental Congress was a church!”

    Well, there were religious invocations at every session, but I didn’t say that the “formation of the US was done by churches.”

    I said that it was advocated by churches, and it is a fact that a great deal of the energy that resulted in the American Revolution was generated by patriotic pastors.

    There was one minister who, at the end of the service, tore off his robe to reveal the uniform of a Continental officer and exhorted his congregation to join him in fighting the British.

    Most of them did…

  76. As was told to Oblio:

    “A point in every direction is the same as no point at all”

    and

    “You don’t have to have a point to have a point, get the point son?”

    http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0067595/

  77. aislander – I don’t doubt that advocating for remaining loyal to England and maintaining that “peculiar institution also occurred in church pulpits.

  78. There is no doubt that churches have played a vital role in the history of America – but then so have taverns. They both served as community gathering centers where ideas were formulated and plans hatched. But that isn’t a justification for making pubs tax-free….

  79. aislander says:

    Pubs are not mentioned specifically in the 1st Amendment…

  80. And yet the USPS is and that seems to be meaningless to the freemarketdisciples……

  81. Tuddo – do not most religions believe they are The One True Religion, and only people baptized into and adhering to their teachings will be saved?

    Sozo – do not all churches indulge in some form of political activity?

    Aislander – not all churches advocated for the Revolution or for the Abolition of Slavery.

    Here’s a little advice about our history. If you want to know why the Founding Fathers did something – Look to England.

    Beginning with the formation of the Church of England, the English Parliament heavily taxed all Churches except the COE.

    Thus, Separation of Church and State included NO Taxes on any Church or Church owned property.

    The importance of taverns to the revolution is that all classes and religions were free to attend. (i.e. open to the public)

  82. aislander says:

    Er…beerBoy…I don’t see the Post Office (let alone the USPS, which is a different entity than the one founded by Ben Franklin) mentioned in the 1st Amendment…

    xring: You can always be counted on to chime in with an amusing non sequitur

    The question really is: why has free speech in churches been curtailed through IRS extortion?

    That question is even more important because of the tradition of political speech in churches that we have all been talking about…

  83. “The question really is: why has free speech in churches been curtailed through IRS extortion?”

    It hasn’t. Any charitable group can choose to pay taxes and regain their partisan nature.

  84. averageJoseph says:

    bB may be thinking about the pitch for the prompt passage of a Postal Service reform bill. Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid claimed that if defeated, it would deny seniors their beloved junk mail.

    “I’ll come home tonight here to my home in Washington and there’ll be some mail there,” the Nevada Democrat said Wednesday on the Senate floor. “A lot of it is what some people refer to as junk mail, but for the people who are sending that mail, it’s very important.

    “And when talking about seniors, seniors love getting junk mail. It’s sometimes their only way of communicating or feeling like they’re part of the real world.”

    Maybe he’s projecting…

  85. Harry Reid is a buffoon.

    And tuddo, re this remark: “So, you are right that Wright’s church has a lot of “political” issues it speaks out on, since oppression by the majority in power and how Jesus gave us a role model on how to deal with that oppression and how to treat all people equally is one of their biggest themes.”

    You crack me up tuddo. So THIS is okay by you because it coincides with your understanding of Jesus’ teachings but otherwise we shouldn’t mix politics and religion? That IS what we were discussing here, right?

    On another thread you take issue with me because I presume to “be right” about things.

    Of COURSE I do, just as you do. And we visit blogs like this one to find out what others are thinking/saying AND persuade folks to consider an alternative. I am not intractable in my opinions, but I’m unashamedly convicted of my beliefs, especially at my age. I’ve run a lot of ideas up the flagpole over the years before establishing the fundamentals of both my faith and my political position regarding the role of government in our lives.

  86. “but I didn’t say that the “formation of the US was done by churches.””

    Yes in fact you did say just that.
    Go back and look.

  87. I’ll say you the trouble,

    “So…if advocating for the formation of the United States was a good thing–done by churches–and advocating for the abolition of slavery was a good thing–done largely by churches–WHAT was the rationale for using the IRS to muzzle churches?”

  88. sozo, obviously you have not read what I have stated. I have presented evidence that the Catholic Church, at least some of the Bishops and priests, has violated IRS rules by stating opposition to a partisan political candidate by name – Obama.

    I have defended the right of ministers and churches and all non-profits to discuss issue-oriented topics and to go on record for or against.

    If a charitable organization wants to publically participate in a partisan election, then they need to give up their tax-free status, so say the laws of the USA.

    You and Lorna and whomever can continue to discuss what churches should or should not be saying in their political rants. Don’t bring me into that or put words in my mouth that I did not say.

  89. aislander – there is also nothing in the 1st Amendment saying “Congress shall levy no tax…”

    I guess the Founders felt that a federal postal service was really important as they didn’t tack it on as an afterthought. The reason why you can’t find anything in the Amendments about the Post Office is because the Founders included it in Article 1 of the Constitution….but you knew that already didn’t you?

  90. Aislander, and you can always be counted on to get facts wrong, and to miss the importance, or at least the relevance, of my postings.

    The Concept of Separation of Church and State includes the quid pro quo that the State does not interfere with churches and the churches do not inter with the state by telling their members how to vote.

    Example – The Archbishop was wrong to tell his priests to collect signatures of R74, BUT he could have told them to deliver homilies on the Church’s teachings on marriage and homosexuality.

    Ajo – many people relay on the Postal service for their medicines, newspapers, magazines, and bills. Most MAIL order and Online businesses would go bankrupt without the Postal Service.

  91. aislander says:

    Please show me that interpretation of the 1st Amendment, x. If it exists, it has never been tested because the IRS always backs down in these matters if the church contests it…

  92. Are you maintaining that the IRS isn’t politically motivated? That the huge s___storm that would arise if a Church’s tax status was revoked doesn’t play into their decisions? That we can safely conclude that, because the IRS backs down that “proves” that they didn’t have a case?

    The last notorious case of the IRS investigating a not-for-profit was the NAACP after Julian Bond said some disparaging things about President W. I’m sure that that was just because they were enforcing their rules and that it had nothing to do with the President (or his staff) insisting that the IRS silence his critics……

  93. I see ailander does what she always does when she loses an argument, attacks on a personal and very childish level.
    Predictable as the tides.

  94. Aislanser – what part of ‘impeding the free exercise of religion’ do you not understand.

  95. Explain how this Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof

    Disallows this Under the Internal Revenue Code, all section 501(c)(3) organizations are absolutely prohibited from directly or indirectly participating in, or intervening in, any political campaign on behalf of (or in opposition to) any candidate for elective public office. Contributions to political campaign funds or public statements of position (verbal or written) made on behalf of the organization in favor of or in opposition to any candidate for public office clearly violate the prohibition against political campaign activity. Violating this prohibition may result in denial or revocation of tax-exempt status and the imposition of certain excise taxes.

  96. IRS regulation continued:

    Certain activities or expenditures may not be prohibited depending on the facts and circumstances. For example, certain voter education activities (including presenting public forums and publishing voter education guides) conducted in a non-partisan manner do not constitute prohibited political campaign activity. In addition, other activities intended to encourage people to participate in the electoral process, such as voter registration and get-out-the-vote drives, would not be prohibited political campaign activity if conducted in a non-partisan manner.

    On the other hand, voter education or registration activities with evidence of bias that (a) would favor one candidate over another; (b) oppose a candidate in some manner; or (c) have the effect of favoring a candidate or group of candidates, will constitute prohibited participation or intervention.

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