Evangelicals and the Amish Option

amishA close friend and fellow Texas ex-pat is looking to escape the godless Gomorrah of their affluent East Coast city. They want to move to the countryside, but the effort isn’t going so well. Their dilemma is emblematic of wider challenges faced by religious conservatives in a nation they are no longer able to dominate.

America has largely shed the authoritarian religious values that once imposed a kind of artificial uniformity on our national culture. Not everyone is thrilled with this development. Particularly in the South, where this dynamic was slowed in the 20th century by poverty and lingering battles over race, evangelicals and fundamentalists are accustomed to a degree of cultural sway that long ago disappeared elsewhere.

Christianity as portrayed in the Bible was a distinctly counter-cultural phenomenon, but Southern religious conservatives do not see themselves in that light. For those who imagine they live in a Christian nation, a wealthy, secular, globally-connected America is producing some hard choices.

Constantly pressured by a community that neither shares nor respects their religious values, life in the Northeast is a challenge for a Southern-fried Biblical literalist. Christmas is a materialistic show and Easter is a holiday about bunnies. Schools start teaching evolution very early. Kids as young as junior high have practically unfiltered, handheld access to the Internet, a cesspool of filth and religious doubts that reaches their children through their peers.

They feel that their community celebrates same-sex families, vilifies gun owners, undermines religious faith, and encourages government dependency. They want to be free from the clutches of this dangerous culture, but there’s a problem. This dangerous culture produces the wealth that keeps them affluent.

Their solution is to retreat to the countryside, but in the Northeast that doesn’t work quite the same way it would in East Texas. Property in a rural setting within an hour from work is actually more expensive than living in town. Commuting is difficult. Those rural spaces in the Northeast aren’t under-developed parcels of farmland. They are mostly weekend retreats for the affluent. Even if they could find a suitable property, the other practical and financial realities around living so far from the rest of their life are sinking in.

So why not just go back to Texas? It isn’t that simple. First, the same dynamic comes increasingly into play in Texas, Georgia or anyplace else you might go. To have a quality career you need to be close to a city. Houston may be more conservative than Philadelphia or Baltimore, but by a steadily decreasing margin.

Look hard enough and it is possible to get a well-paid STEM or financial services job in some patch of flyover country where you’ll be surrounded by people who think the universe is 6000 years old. However, your boss and all of the organization’s decision-makers will be somewhere else. To join them in a senior position you will probably have to leave. Choosing a “family friendly” setting means choosing financial instability over affluence and achievement. Religious conservatives increasingly find themselves forced to choose between their careers and their values.

Social conservatives have begun to paint this is an issue of tolerance, but that is a misconception. Lots of unique cultures survive and thrive in a globalized, urban America. Mainstream culture is perfectly willing to tolerate religious conservatives. Tolerance is not what they are looking for.

There are two unique characteristics of Christian religious fundamentalism in the US that create special problems. First, fundamentalists expect the wider culture to embrace, not merely tolerate their beliefs. The second problem is related to the first. This brand of Christianity is not merely a faith, but also a rigid matrix of factual beliefs in tension with reality. Being surrounded by a community of coreligionists is not merely a comfort. The uniformity that comes from a believing community is a practical necessity.

Tolerance isn’t enough. The fact that the wider culture is unwilling to transform itself in conformity with their demands is an affront. They imagine themselves as the last remnant of an authentic American identity. They are the “pro- American” bloc of Sarah Palin’s America. To be surrounded by a successful, prosperous culture that does not embrace their values is to pass every waking hour in a smothering swamp of cognitive dissonance.

The pain of cognitive dissonance is complicated by the need to shelter a brittle collection of factual beliefs. Free flow of information is the blood supply of global capitalism. For believers in Biblical literalism, information itself is dangerous. Controlling access to information is critical to maintaining the worldview at the center of their culture. It is extremely difficult, if not impossible, to control information in an urban capitalist setting.

Participating in that economic system means swimming in a sea of data and converting it into reliable insights. That critical/analytic process on which so much of the wider economy is built is inherently corrosive to religious fundamentalism. Conflict is inevitable.

Fewer Americans under thirty are embracing fundamentalism than in the past but, those who remain will likely be far more militantly committed. They will have to be.

As that commitment to a denialist religious agenda increases, their attachment to the rest of the culture will have to decline. A more explicitly counter-cultural wave of religious fundamentalism will likely pull back from the kinds of direct political engagement that marked the last twenty years. This is not the positive development that some people might expect. Less Moral Majority will likely mean more Bundy Ranch.

In time, religious fundamentalists in the 20th century mold may embrace the Amish Option. They might be found mostly in quiet redoubts away from centers of national power and wealth. Folks there may not be riding horse carts and building furniture, but they would develop a culture, economy, and identity decidedly separate from mainstream American life. Oklahoma and Alabama may develop into Utah’s poorer cousins.

In the meantime, my friends will probably stay in the Northeast, abandon their country dreams, and do their best to adapt. Like most traditional evangelicals, they aren’t so doggedly committed to their worldview that they’ll turn their backs on career, education, and ambition to escape from pluralism. They’ll chafe at city values while their kids grow up at peace with the wider culture.

A new, more hardened generation of religious extremists may take a more strident stand. Expect to see many adopt a version of the Amish Option, bypassing the advantages of wealth, education and influence available in mainstream culture in order to opt-out and protect their fragile beliefs. It is unlikely that this will unfold quietly. We could be in for a bumpy ride.

Chris Ladd is a Texan living in the Chicago area. He has been involved in grassroots Republican politics for most of his life. He was a Republican precinct committeeman in suburban Chicago until he resigned from the party and his position after the 2016 Republican Convention. He can be reached at gopliferchicago at gmail dot com.

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Posted in Religious Right
424 comments on “Evangelicals and the Amish Option
  1. […] with the rights of my gay friends to live their lives in peace, there is an option. There’s lots of cheap land in Amish Country, where you won’t be bothered. Bring solar panels, unless the mysterious witchcraft that makes […]

  2. Intrigued says:

    I live in one those suburb Christian utopias where your only choice for local Government is whose tea bag is larger. About a month ago I was talking to a really sweet Christian neighbor about the cost of college and her main concern was working to pay for college only to have her future successful children subsidizing the less fortunate with their well paid incomes. Really?

    Last week our neighborhood gate was out of service which prompted a series of e-mails announcing concern that the broken gate would allow the illegal children in the news to invade our small community. Really?

    I am convinced that the Christian suburbs dramatically reduce a persons’ relevance in this world. My community is full of educated engineers and medical professionals but they have lost all sense of reality. We have worked hard to get here but are already planning out exit plan. Lol

  3. Anse says:

    I just spent a week in New England. Not to make too big a deal out of a detail that doesn’t really summarize your overall point, but property values in Connecticut are surprisingly low in the rural areas, or at least they aren’t quite as high as you might think. Rural Texas is still cheaper, of course, but you can buy a couple of acres an hour from Hartford with a 2,000 square foot house for under $300,000. That’s less than my suburban Houston home on an 8,000 square foot lot is worth. And homes aren’t really that cheap in Texas, either. There’s a severe shortage of new housing in the small towns. You might be surprised by how much you can pay for a new home in some of those little towns.

    The desire to separate one’s self from the world is a theme as old as humanity, and it’s a common archetype in American history. The Mormons are an example that leaps to mind. The colonial ancestors of New England are too, of course. What’s interesting is how those colonial New Englanders evolved into an establishment that would itself experience rebellion. In the 17th century, those Calvinist Puritans strove to establish an oasis of godliness that would be a beacon for the rest of the godless world; by the late 18th century, they were jailing Baptists and other “heretics” who challenged their entrenched authority. That’s the challenge of trying to create a heaven on earth; it doesn’t work, and eventually you turn yourself into the thing you despised before.

  4. geoff1968 says:

    T-8 hours and counting. I’ll be driving back to Houston. I expect to make Little Rock by nightfall. They say the humble pie tastes great. Guess I’ll have me a slice.

    To pray in your closet, or to cut off your ear if it offends you, those are straight up NT references. If you care to send me copies of other religious texts I will consider their corroborative value.

    Think I’ll fire up the motor at 6 and play Fresh Cream.

  5. Houston-stay-at-Homer says:

    Apologies to all for my lack of civility with the below quote. It is not my own (I’m not witty enough), but I saw it today and made me think of this posting.

    Your religion is like a penis.
    It is fine that you have one.
    It is fine that you are proud of it.
    But please don’t whip it out in public and start waving it around and don’t try to shove it down our throats.

    • GG says:

      Okay that’s funny.

    • dowripple says:

      Sweet! How about a haiku?

      Religion and dust…
      both can be irritating
      and found in a vacuum

    • CaptSternn says:

      Substitute “opinion” for “religion, then practice what you preach. Or maybe you only want it to apply to others?

      • dowripple says:

        He might agree with you Cap, as I would. A political blog is different from the “public” though, we’re all here to see others’ opinions. 🙂

      • CaptSternn says:

        Yes, Dow, we do come here to exchange opinions. And when our religion or religious beliefs are attacked, some of us will defend our religious beliefs, our opinions. We do not say such things as HT has said with his quote about the opinions or views of others. And those others are apt to make their opinions very public, even into legislation, to force their “morals” on the rest of us by force of law.

      • texan5142 says:

        So we can call Dan the Sternn cult.

      • texan5142 says:

        Dan the Richard strikes again.

      • GG says:

        Sternn, you have a very strange persecution complex. Yes, you receive a lot of shit here, but much of it is brought on by yourself with your unyielding rigidness and failure to see the gray in between the black and white. Not to mention your absolute conviction you are always right and everyone else wrong even when you are proven wrong. Let’s not forget you are the absolute self-professed “expert” in everything. Despite not having a degree in Constitutional Law you crow about being an expert at interpreting it because you have “studied” it extensively. The problem is most of us would like people with actual schooling for that, not some country boy fundamentalist Baptist doing it for us. I can study quantum physics from my sofa but that does make me a physicist.

      • CaptSternn says:

        Persecution complex, GG? Look at what HT posted and what we are replying to, then tell me who has the persecution complex.

        My dad taught me early on that if somebody tells me someting is in the Bible, ask them where it is. If they can answer that, look it up, read the chapter, maybe the whole book, so that the context and intent can be understood. Tutt has observed a big difference between Cathilics and Protestants, Catholics reply more on the clergy where Protestants will go straght to the source.

        So when it comes to the constitution, you would want to rely on what others tell you about it, but only if they say something you want to hear. I would rather go straight to the source and read it for myself, then I can look at the Federalist Papers and the Anti-Federalist Letters and other resources to understand the intent for myself. Once I have the facts, I can form an opinion. You may disagree with my opinion based on those facts, but you have not proven those facts to be wrong.

      • bubbabobcat says:

        GG says:
        August 9, 2014 at 8:49 am
        “I can study quantum physics from my sofa but that does make me a physicist.”

        Excellent point GG! am so going to steal that! 🙂

      • GG says:

        Problem is anyone can interpret what they want out of the Constitution. Same with the Bible. That’s the problem. Your interpretation may not be mine. You are guessing at the original “intent”. Your opinion IS NOT fact. Same goes for mine but you have a strangely smug sense that you are always right when you are definitely not.

        HT didn’t say anything attacking your religion. I’d say that little ditty was spot. YOUR religion is yours and shouldn’t be shoved down everyone else’s throats. That’s the point of his post. If you take it personally, than I’d say you have a problem.

      • GG says:

        Pardon my error. Should be “doesn’t make me a physicist”.

      • GG says:

        Glad to see you are finally coming around to the idea that your opinion is just an opinion though. 🙂

      • texan5142 says:

        You nailed it GG but it will fall on deaf ears.

      • GG says:

        Y’all have a nice day. I’ve got to start cooking for a party later today.

      • Owl of Bellaire says:

        Sternn notes “a big difference between Cathilics [sic] and Protestants[:] Catholics reply [sic] more on the clergy where Protestants will go straght to the source.”

        So, Sternn, are you throwing support to kabuzz in his claim that Catholicism is not really a “Bible-believing church”?

      • kabuzz61 says:

        GG,So far as I can tell, *most* people on this discussion board are better educated and informed than you are. And the common mythologies of Islam, Judaism, and Christianity (how can you not know the name of your own faith, btw?) aren’t particularly relevant to the discussion.

      • bubbabobcat says:

        So much for that vow of silence eh buzzy? You just can’t help but wanting to troll non stop?

      • bubbabobcat says:

        kabuzz61 says:
        August 8, 2014 at 7:32 am
        “I think it is time for the conservatives to take a break from this blog for awhile [sic]. Get a better perspective of where we should spend out [sic] time and reflect to see if we really, really need to visit here. Let the liberals just echo for awhile [sic]. Maybe they’ll start offending each other. Come on conservatives, take a couple few [sic] weeks break.”

        Broke your vow of silence in 29 hours and 12 minutes…

      • CaptSternn says:

        The intent of the authors of the Bible can be determined by reading the entire Books in the Bible, not just a verse or chapter. But I agree that it is left to some interpretation.

        That is not the case with the constituution as the founding fathers wrote extensively about their intent and we still have access to those writings, more so now than ever with the internet. You are not interested in the intent, just in getting what you want and forcing your opinions, morals and beliefs on everybody else through legislation.

      • GG says:

        Bubba, buzz has some kind of hard on for me. He can’t help himself

    • Houston-stay-at-Homer says:

      There are few things funnier than a group of people, comprising 75% of the population, so popular and so powerful that people pretend to be a part of it for fear of being ostracized or punished, so influential that 99% of all politicians bow to it, that feels so ridiculously persecuted when it gets its way only 97% of the time rather than 99% of the time.

      Look up the concept of punching up versus punching down.

      Stern…if you want to equate my opinions with your religion, I think you might want to check yourself with some of the comments you have made about my opinions.

  6. Turtles Run says:

    The Bone man has an Op-Ed in Politico. He is chastising the POTUS for not doing his job. I guess I can understand the logic because how can the GOP/TP sue the President for doing his job if he isn’t doing it.

    Oompa-Loompa logic

    http://www.politico.com/magazine/story/2014/08/do-your-job-mr-president-109840.html?hp=l1#.U-USqfldU1I

  7. CaptSternn says:

    And so we have returned to Iraq. Obama has decided to turn our air power into Iran’s air force. Doubt it will be very effective without boots on the ground. How long until somebody posts photos of dead kids and blames it on the U.S. the way they do with Israel?

    • desperado says:

      Yep, Obama is still dealing with trying to cleaning up George W”s mess. A job that never seems to end.

      • CaptSternn says:

        This is Obama’s mess. He should have negotiated and kept troops in Iraq to prevent this from happening in the first place. Al Qaeda was defeated in Iraq and Saudi Arabia and on the run in Afghanistan. Now they are back, gaining strength and more are rising up. Muslim Brotherhood on the rise around that entire region.

      • desperado says:

        Revisionist History 101.

      • CaptSternn says:

        That’s you area of expertise. I will stick with reality and the facts.

      • desperado says:

        Yes, reality from the guy who thinks George W was a foreign policy genius.

      • kabuzz61 says:

        I have been aware of the ‘bigger’ world for 35 years now and I haven’t seen it this messed up ever. Is there a continent without major problems? Besides the obvious ones?

        Obama’s legacy. This is what happens when your golf game and parties take precedence over leading.

      • Houston-stay-at-Homer says:

        Buzz…Korea, Vietnam, brink of war with China, Cuban Missile Crisis, height of cold war, folks were practicing getting under their desks to protect against nuclear war.

        The world is mixed up, but we have been here before, many, many, many times.

        I would venture to say that technology has just made us much more aware of it.

      • bubbabobcat says:

        DanMan says:
        August 8, 2014 at 12:10 pm
        “since you brought it up and still can’t let him go, compared to what we have now Bush appears to be a savant”

        Idiot-savant” with a focus on the former and not so much the latter.

      • desperado says:

        Bubba, on a completely unrelated note, the Eagles are coming back to the Toyota Center in October. This time I’ve got tickets.

      • bubbabobcat says:

        I saw that des, and so did my wife. She wants to go again. I would if she didn’t mortgage the house on tickets for the show earlier this year. They really have their show down pat. You will love it.

    • texan5142 says:

      It is a humanitarian effort to save 40 thousand civilians on a mountain top from death. What would your god say about your criticism of that.

    • Houston-stay-at-Homer says:

      Buzz…Korea, Vietnam, brink of war with China, Cuban Missile Crisis, height of cold war, folks were practicing getting under their desks to protect against nuclear war.

      The world is mixed up, but we have been here before, many, many, many times.

      I would venture to say that technology has just made us much more aware of it.

    • desperado says:

      Everything was honky dory until Obama came along.

  8. Owl of Bellaire says:

    Sternn will be pleased, even if it *is* from what he’d call a liberal rag:

    http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/plum-line/wp/2014/08/06/the-tea-party-may-be-losing-races-but-its-actually-winning/

    “That’s the magic of an insurgent movement like the Tea Party. A win strengthens it by showing its members that victories are possible if they fight hard enough. And because the movement has organized itself around the idea of establishment Republican betrayal, its losses only further prove that it’s doing the right thing. Furthermore, if ordinary Republicans have to become Tea Partiers to beat Tea Partiers (even if only for a while), the movement’s influence is greater, not less.”

    And, kabuzz, to salve your tender and sorely flayed piety, I’ll be out of town this weekend for a cousin’s wedding in Dallas. Perhaps I’ll check in on you lot from the road or the hotel, but I suspect I’ll be largely quiescent until next week.

    • CaptSternn says:

      Yes, typical errors and a bit of name-calling, but the author is right in general. We don’t have to unseat incumbents, just let them know that they aren’t safe any more.

    • objv says:

      In solidarity with kabuzz, I will be taking a break too. I will be heading out to Rico, CO. From its photos online, Rico doesn’t look very rico, but with a high expected of 71 and a low of 45, temperatures will be ideal for hiking.

      Have a good time at the wedding, Owl.

      I hope the rest of you have great weekends as well.

      Most of all, I hope Homer gets his twins potty trained. Judging from his latest comments and frequent mention of certain male body parts, potty training must be in full swing at the Stay-at-Homer household.

  9. kabuzz61 says:

    I can, do and have taken alot of shit on this blog and I have given it out also. But to offend peoples God purposely goes beyond the pale. At least in my estimation.

    I think Chris gets a lot of comments due to the fact that conservatives come on and the banter begins. I think it is time for the conservatives to take a break from this blog for awhile. Get a better perspective of where we should spend out time and reflect to see if we really, really need to visit here. Let the liberals just echo for awhile. Maybe they’ll start offending each other. Come on conservatives, take a couple few weeks break.

    • GG says:

      No one will miss you dear. We will plod along just fine. If you don’t like what you are reading here don’t let the door hit you in the ass on the way out.

    • CaptSternn says:

      They are just trolls, Kabuzz. It’s all about getting a reaction.

      • GG says:

        Kind of like you too Sternn???? Both of you are also trolls.

      • kabuzz61 says:

        I agree but I don’t want to willfully associate with people who mock God. I don’t know how to get over that hurdle personally.

      • GG says:

        Oh good grief kitty. Laying it on a little thick aren’t you?

      • CaptSternn says:

        No, GG, I don’t say things simply to envoke an emotional response or to upset people.

        You say below that you don’t mock Turtles, well of course you don’t because he is on your side.

        You know my political opinions, and that charity is a personal and private choice. You also know I am a big believer in personal responsibility. I do not come here boasting of any acts of charity or kindness I do, that is not the point. I do not do any such thing so that I can stick my chest out and tell everybody. For me, that would be like the people Jesus spoke of, praying loudly on the corners so everybody could hear them. They are not sincere in their acts, they are just acting for the people, to be recognized. That is not my way.

      • GG says:

        Cap, Tutt has mentioned in the past how you say provocative and/or deliberately callous things to get people “thinking”. I believe that’s also trying to get a reaction.

      • GG says:

        Cap, TR does not wear his religion on his sleeve and act self-righteous and simper piously about their faith. You and Buzz do.

      • tuttabellamia says:

        GG, in my opinion, Cap has toned it down considerably

      • Turtles Run says:

        Tutt

        Then you have not been paying attention then.

      • bubbabobcat says:

        Hey buzzy, get off your cross already…

      • bubbabobcat says:

        And yet buzzy you have qualms about offending gays, Muslims, Blacks, Hispanics, etc…

      • bubbabobcat says:

        CaptSternn says:
        August 8, 2014 at 8:25 am
        “You also know I am a big believer in personal responsibility. I do not come here boasting of any acts of charity or kindness I do, that is not the point. I do not do any such thing so that I can stick my chest out and tell everybody. For me, that would be like the people Jesus spoke of, praying loudly on the corners so everybody could hear them. They are not sincere in their acts, they are just acting for the people, to be recognized. That is not my way.”

        Now who IS that the way of? Lemme think. Hmmmmmm.

        bart-1/seriouscynic/usincrisis/Anse identity thief/fake DanMan says:
        July 22, 2014 at 9:11 pm
        “Can you name one single example of a Mosque which does more charity work than my church?”

        Bart-1 says:
        July 16, 2014 at 10:29 am
        “Hasn’t that stereotype been repeatedly disproven, Despo? Liberals are more compassionate about giving Other People’s Monies. Conservatives give more of their own, especially to religious organizations.”

        Bart-1 says:
        July 22, 2014 at 9:59 pm
        K.C., I’ve posted repeatedly why I did that [sockpuppet troll bullying] to get you to actually “man up”. Where is the mosque that does more charity work than my church?”

        Bart-1 says:
        July 16, 2014 at 9:27 pm
        “I would gladly challenge you to list any mosque’s acts of charity and I would show you it is not close to ours.”

      • bubbabobcat says:

        Meant to say,

        “And yet buzzy you have NO qualms about offending gays, Muslims, Blacks, Hispanics, etc…”

    • Turtles Run says:

      **YAWN** Please don’t go. Oh, Lordy somebody please stop him

    • flypusher says:

      Seriously, the fact that people can “mock God” (although I really can’t see what was the tipping point here, as I’ve read far worse on other sites) without keeping hauled away by the Inquisition is a wonderful indicator that religious freedom and freedom of speech are working. It’s similar to the most vile disgusting criminals getting due process- if their rights are respected, then I am less worried about mine. The canary is healthy and singing away.

      Freedom of speech requires a thick skin.

    • tuttabellamia says:

      Kabuzz, I will take you up on that one.

      For me it’s not about making a point about partisanship. I just think being on here is a waste of time, precious time I could be using to read more, brush up on my languages.

      I’m due for a vow of silence anyway.

      Thanks, and good luck staying away.

      • GG says:

        We will see how long it lasts Tutt.

      • objv says:

        Tutt, I’ll join you in the vow of silence.I can’t guarantee that I’ll be able to stay completely away, but Kabuzz’s challenge came at a good time. It might be a good idea for Chris to discuss guidelines as to what he finds acceptable on his blog.

        We all know each other pretty well, but a visitor might have second thoughts about joining the discussion. Like Kabuzz, I find obscene remarks made about God most offensive. They bother me ten times as much as any personal attacks made towards myself. Swear words bother me less since I used to work in an environment where they were liberally tossed around. Still, they might bother some and are not really needed to make a point.

        I’d be curious to know what others think about any guidelines and limits on personal attacks. I’ll TRY to stay away for a couple weeks. We’ll see ….

      • bubbabobcat says:

        objv says:
        August 9, 2014 at 11:42 am
        “I’d be curious to know what others think about any guidelines and limits on personal attacks. I’ll TRY to stay away for a couple weeks.”

        Hypocritically talking out of both sides of your mouth again OV?

        You had no qualms with your buddy Dan’s personal attack on GG with his “cum guzzling, gutter slut” vulgarity and didn’t say one word against him and you even follow up with these kiss ass obsequious posts WELCOMING the personal attacking troll back:

        objv says:
        July 10, 2014 at 5:55 pm
        Rose, you’ll love DanMan. His comments are like breath of fresh air in a stale smelling refrigerator. By no time, he’ll have a special place in your heart – as he has in all of ours.

        objv says:
        August 8, 2014 at 5:04 pm
        Hi DanMan, you’re looking very vibrant.

        Yup, no concerns whatsoever about “limits on personal attacks” when it’s somebody you agree with, no matter how low and nasty it got.

        Only in OV’s world of utter blatant hypocrisy would “cum guzzling, gutter slut” be characterized so lovingly as a “breath of fresh air in a stale smelling refrigerator” and “by no time, he’ll have a special place in your heart – as he has in all of ours”.

        No, not “all of ours”, just yours alone in your creepy crush on a fellow troll.

        Buh bye OV. Your blatant hypocrisy won’t be missed. But just like buzzy, you will lie and be back in less than 24 hours because you can’t stop trolling like all the other wingnuts.

  10. tuttabellamia says:

    This liberal use of the F word reminds me of when I was little. My mom and aunts would speak to each other
    “in the F” — “hablar en la F” — which involved adding an extra syllable beginning with F to every single syllable uttered, so the kids wouldn’t understand what they were saying. Some simple examples:

    SI would be SIFI
    MAMA would be MAFA-MAFA
    COMO TE LLAMAS would be COFO MOFO TEFE LLAFA MAFAS

    I picked it up pretty quickly and understood every word they were saying and freaked my mom out when I started speaking to her using her own secret code language.

    • GG says:

      The use of “F” word is usually used for emphasis. I doubt anyone here uses it after after other word but I have heard people use it that way.

    • GG says:

      That should be “after every other word”. Much coffee is needed…………….

    • tuttabellamia says:

      GG, my mom’s secret code had nothing to do with using or hiding the word “f•••k.” It had nothing to do with that word at all. It simply involved adding syllables beginning with the F sound, kind of like pig latin.

      GIGI would be GIFI GIFI.

    • tuttabellamia says:

      I hope someone here gets it.

      • Owl of Bellaire says:

        I got it. Inserting the extra bit after every syllable sounds like a challenging mental routine to keep up. Did they speak noticeably more slowly, or did it become automatic?

      • GG says:

        Never got into pig latin. My mom was pretty outspoken and would say what was on her mind and didn’t mince words around us. I guess by growing up that way I was prepared not to be shocked.

      • CaptSternn says:

        Kind of like when parents spell words out so the kids won’t know what is being said. Doesn’t work so well when the kid figures out spelling.

      • tuttabellamia says:

        Thanks, Owl. Actually, it was automatic. They spoke fast, especially since the conversations were usually heated. And Spanish is a rapidly-spoken language to begin with.

        Some people use P instead of F. An even more complicated form involves adding TWO syllables with TWO different letters — G and D — as in:

        SI = SI-GI-DI

        MAMA = MAGADA-MAGADA

        COMO = COGODO-MOGODO

      • tuttabellamia says:

        GG, I guess my own upbringing, listening to secret codes, and in Spanish, helped me tremendously with my language skills.

  11. Turtles Run says:

    Looks like Democrats in the OK state got tricked into believing a GOP/TP flyer for an upcoming event with some unbelievablely racist content is real….wait…..what……it is real.

    OMFG LMAO!!!!

    That GOP/TP minority outreach program is really working.

    http://www.rawstory.com/rs/2014/08/07/oklahoma-gop-fundraising-flier-crudely-racist-democrats-at-first-suspected-a-hoax/?onswipe_redirect=never

  12. GG says:

    Signing off to go watch “Orange is the New Black” with **gasp** sex and cussing. My Christian bf is watching too.

  13. kabuzz61 says:

    Well, the fine liberals on this site have taken pride in their mocking God and those that believe. Chris, you must, I mean must be so proud to have such a hateful echo chamber. Good work my friend.

    • GG says:

      Who is hateful? If one doesn’t necessarily believe in “your” god that does not make one “hateful”. I’m currently dating someone who goes to church and cusses and, boy, do we fornicate. Does that make him less of a believer?

    • Owl of Bellaire says:

      Perhaps, kabuzz, we’re really just mocking YOU.

      If God is as Great as is said, She or He can take it.

      Apparently, you can’t.

    • Houston-stay-at-Homer says:

      Buzz…I rarely agree with Owl…but buddy, seriously, we are mocking you not god.

      • Owl of Bellaire says:

        @Houston-stay-at-Homer — Really? I agree with you quite often. I guess it’s not a transitive property….

      • tuttabellamia says:

        Owl, I think HT agrees with the content of your comments, just not your approach.

      • Houston-stay-at-Homer says:

        Oh Owl…I love you just fine (we probably live within a mile of each other, are probably moderately close in age, and probably vote about the same way), and we generally agree on most issues.

        I think I might be a bit more open to restrictions to late term abortions (but I’m not exactly sure your position on that – it may be the same as mine). I think we generally would agree the the Democrats are bubbling idiots but that the GOP/TP are meaner to various groups than we would like. So yeah, I probably misspoke (mis-typed) with the “rarely agree with Owl”.

        I tend to be willing to go on and on and on and on and on and on and on and on bickering with Stern and Buzz on the same issues over and over and over and over and over again, while you are more willing to call them wonderful names and move on.

        I’m not sure which is a more effective approach (well…I guess neither is actually effective in affecting anything), but then I have to listen to Buzz whine and complain as he climbs on the cross to be the martyr for all of the liberals slings and arrows.

    • GG says:

      I’m going to start counting the number of times you use the word “hate” on here. My little kitty, you do project. Everyone is a hater to you. The word hate rarely crosses my mind unless it’s about brussel sprouts or pokey drivers in the left lane and even then “stupid a-hole” is more likely. Here’s a hint, dear, just because someone doesn’t share your faux piety and belief in “your” God does not make them a hater. There are millions of people on Earth who think differently than you do. Does that scare you?

    • GG says:

      And seriously go do some charity work. I did mine this week and I’m merely a “godless hater”. Did you do some charity work????? I doubt it.

  14. GG says:

    Speaking of religious nuts. OMFG!! Nope, no separation of church and state for this moron. How offensive and thoughtless for non-Christian congresspeople.

    http://www.thenewcivilrightsmovement.com/gop_whip_sends_bible_to_every_member_of_congress_to_help_guide_in_decision_making

    • tuttabellamia says:

      He’s just trying to promote his agenda, to persuade lawmakers to his way of thinking by dispensing information.

      All they have to do is smile and politely say No, thanks.

      • tuttabellamia says:

        That’s what lawmakers do.

      • Owl of Bellaire says:

        If his agenda needs to be explained by religious doctrines rather than logical arguments, it’s a violation of the separation of church and state.

        Of course, most Republican legislators seem to stupid to understand even such simple concepts.

      • tuttabellamia says:

        Owl, not all legislative agendas are promoted with the use of logic. There’s wooing, sweet talk, compromise, give and take, playing hard to get. Do you consider those to be violations as well?

        A gift of poetry by Rilke for the purpose of reflection and meditation is okay, but not the Bible?

      • GG says:

        Not thoughtful at all if they aren’t appreciated. Congress is made up of people of many different religions. He should have done his homework and found out who really was a practicing christian and who wasn’t. Otherwise it’s a waste of money and they could have gone to people who may appreciate it or maybe even a homeless shelter. A Jew, Muslim or Hindu may be indifferent and throw it away or be offended.

      • CaptSternn says:

        It is Mr. Atchison’s money, he can do with it as he pleases.

      • Houston-stay-at-Homer says:

        Well Stern…it seems that some of that money was your money as Congressional staffers were getting paid as they took the time to pass around the bibles.

        A more fiscally conservative Christian would have sent the bibles directly to the folks in congress rather than being a taker and using other people’s tax payer dollars and resources to distribute religious material.

      • CaptSternn says:

        Those staffers would have been unemployed had they not distributed the Bibles? I guess they no longer have jobs now.

      • Owl of Bellaire says:

        Tutt, laws need to be based in reason: caprice has no place in a system that is supposed to be just. Sure, sometimes (one might even say often) whims make their way into law, and that’s when it’s the job of the courts to identify them as baseless and abolish them.

        A gift of poetry by Rilke would be fine. A copy of the Quran for the sake of understanding the Muslim faith would be fine. A copy of the Bible for the sake of appreciation as literature would be fine.

        But a copy of the BIble specifically “to help guide you in your decision-making” because “the best advice comes through meditating on God’s Word”? That’s not illegal, but it’s pretty un-American.

      • Houston-stay-at-Homer says:

        Stern…I would hope your small gov’t GOP representatives would only have sufficient staff available to do the vital work associated with making our great country prosper.

        Taking time away from those vital activities must mean that important gov’t work was not getting done during that time period.

        Now, our GOP legislator’s staff probably is going to do a little less research on an important issue and is going to have less time to listen and understand constituents’ concerns, and thus our GOP congressperson is going to be making decisions based on less information than before.

        You would think our small gov’t GOP would have more appropriate uses of their staff’s time.

      • CaptSternn says:

        Important government work. Now that’s funny, I don’t care who you are. Besides, Reid won’t let anything through the senate anyway. So far over 300 bills died at his desk.

      • Owl of Bellaire says:

        “Important government work. Now that’s funny.”

        Sternn keeps claiming he’s not an anarchist. But his dumbfuck rhetoric keeps suggesting otherwise.

      • GG says:

        Where did I say he couldn’t? It’s just a waste and unnecessary since our government was not founded on the bible.

      • goplifer says:

        ***He’s just trying to promote his agenda***

        Really??

        Tell me you would be that casual about it if a Muslim lawmaker in a senior leadership position were circulating complimentary copies of the Quran to guide official decision-making, or if the guy was sending out copies of Das Kapital.

      • CaptSternn says:

        Why does it always seem to take this twist? Like, “Oh yeah, well what if it was a Quran?” So what?

      • goplifer says:

        ***So what?***

        Okay, I’m calling Bullshit on that one.

      • GG says:

        Because a lot of people would definitely be apoplectic over receiving a Quran especially fundie christians.

      • CaptSternn says:

        Call it however you want, Lifer. If a private citizen sent in a bunch of copies and the repesentative was will to distribute them, then what would be the problem? If the person on the recieving end didn’t want it, then they could just do as Tutt suggests, smile politely and say no thanks.

      • Owl of Bellaire says:

        And if those copies of the Quran were distributed specifically “to help guide you in your decision-making” because “the best advice comes through meditating on God’s Word”?

        I can hardly imagine the clean-up required after all the exploding conservative heads. Actually, I suppose that I can; the amount of brains spilled would probably require only a single Kleenex.

      • texan5142 says:

        I am calling bullshit also, if the Koran was given to the law makers to help with their decision making of laws, there would be an outcry of Shiria law being imposed. When in fact this jack wad wants biblical law to be imposed.

      • texan5142 says:

        Sharia, sorry.

      • texan5142 says:

        Quran, sorry.

      • Turtles Run says:

        Put me in the “I call BULLSQUAT” column as well. I remember when Keith Elison was sworn in using the Quran and the shaite storm that occurred afterwards.

        Former Alabama state Judge Roy Moore called on Congress to not allow Ellison to take his seat, saying:

        “In 1943, we would never have allowed a member of Congress to take their oath on Mein Kampf, or someone in the 1950s to swear allegiance to the ‘Communist Manifesto.’ Congress has the authority and should act to prohibit Ellison from taking the congressional oath today!”

        From that well known liberal web site WND.com

        http://www.wnd.com/2006/12/39271/

      • CaptSternn says:

        Here is the sad yet sort of funny thing, Bibles were sent and we have people here having a coniption fit. What would y’all do if they had been copies of the Torah or Quran or even the Book of Mormon?

      • GG says:

        Same reaction Cap. Religious books have no part of a secular government. Those belong in church or a synagogue.

        I don’t see anyone here having a “conniption fit” just voicing their opinion.

      • CaptSternn says:

        Y’all are having as much a fit over the Bibles as you suggest conservatives would have over Qurans.

        Hey, if you don’t think such books should be sent to members of congress, don’t go out, buy a lot of them and send them to congress. Our government isn’t supposed to be anti-God anyway, that’s for communist nations.

      • Owl of Bellaire says:

        Our government is not required to be atheist.

        But our government *is* required to be agnostic.

      • GG says:

        No fit here cappy, perfectly calm, and secular is not anti-god. The founding fathers established a clear separation between church and state because they did not want a state religion established like good old England.

      • Houston-stay-at-Homer says:

        In our Palin and Cruz headlined rally on the Washington Mall, we did get at least a bit of recognition that other religious texts exist.

        “I call upon all of you to wage a second American nonviolent revolution, to use civil disobedience, and to demand that this president leave town, to get up, to put the Quran down, to get up off his knees, and to figuratively come out with his hands up.”

        I’m sure these folks would have been thrilled with a Quran sent to them to help guide their decision making.

      • Houston-stay-at-Homer says:

        I think we even had a neighboring state attempt to ban Sharia law (obviously ruled unconstitutional because idiots are idiotic).

        One of the primary sources of Sharia law? Well, that would be the Quran,

        We have lots of GOP/TP folks denouncing the Quran and Sharia law, even going as far as proposing bans and considering bans.

        Who would those haters of freedom include? Well, most of the state of Oklahoma, Rep. Pete Hoekstra, ranking member of the House intelligence committee, Trent Franks, and Michelle Bachmann (of course), who heads the House Tea Party Caucus.

        Newt considered Sharia a mortal threat to the US and proposed a ban throughout the US.

        Some are even suggesting: banning Muslims who “espouse or support” sharia “from holding positions of trust in federal, state, or local governments or the armed forces of the United States”, prosecuting those who espouse sharia for sedition, and banning immigration to the U.S. by those who adhere to sharia.

        But sure Stern…folks would not have a problem with encouragement to use the Quran to help their legislative decision making.

      • tuttabellamia says:

        GG, you began this thread about the Bible gifts with: “OMFG!!”
        ***********************************
        Looks likes a coniption fit to me.

      • tuttabellamia says:

        I would be okay with most literature being distributed among lawmakers to guide in the decision-making process as long as the basis for the bestowal was respectful — Bible, Koran, poetry, fiction.

        I might have a problem with pornographic magazines being passed around, unless it related to the “decision-making process.”

      • tuttabellamia says:

        And GG, how is using the F word in front of the word God not anti God (even if it is in abbreviated form)?

        OMFG is not anti God? Or maybe you were just saying?

      • GG says:

        That was more of a “are you kidding me, he’s crazier than a shithouse rat” reaction.

      • CaptSternn says:

        Most excellent point there, Tutt.

        HT, Sharia should not be used as law here in the U.S.. It is unconstitutional to use it as a fomr of law, so it is already banned at the federal level and has been from the very beginning.

        Owl, here we have HT also using the term “GOP/TP”, so it is “Turtles and others” just as I said earlier.

      • GG says:

        Tutt, I was not raised in very religious household. Cussing is not anti-god to me or my family. If there is a god I’m sure he’s a big boy/girl who can handle the occasional cuss word. Not sure why so many think a god would be fragile little snowflake.

      • GG says:

        I’ll also add that I know many churchgoing people who cuss like sailors.

      • Owl of Bellaire says:

        Sternn, often a slash mark indicates multiple choices (that it refers to the GOP *or* the Tea Party) rather than equivalence (that the GOP *is* the Tea Party).

        But, of course, you’ll believe whatever suits your fancy. You always do.

      • Houston-stay-at-Homer says:

        Tutt…I don’t think I would characterize OMFG as anti-god.

        I would venture that many a young Christian has used the colloquialism in the past day or two.

        I think you could characterize some of the “f#$k god” comments from a few folks here as anti-god, but OMFG is much more a colloquialism than a slur against god.

        It might not be in good taste to say in front of your grandma, but it at least acknowledges there is a god.

      • Owl of Bellaire says:

        Tutt, if I speak of someone wearing red as “decked out like a f’ing Santa”, am I anti-Santa? If I say an explosion was “bigger than the f’ing Fourth of July”, am I being unpatriotic? Well, then why is God any different?

        I often wonder why the religious feel that their God is so fragile.

      • kabuzz61 says:

        You poor hateful liberals are having such a hard time trying to turn your anti Christian rant wagon around. Of course if you knew that Islam, Judaism and Christian all are started from Abraham. So, for you anti God fits concerning the Koran or Torah is off the mark. Of course you would need to understand faith and practice it to see how silly you are.

        OMFG is using the Lord’s name in vain with expletive added. It’s purpose put forth by GG was to diminish God and/or religion.

        Homers attempt at saying Christian kids would use that expression daily is on it’s face stupid. He is either a God hater or an idiot.

        Tutt called you out for what you are. You exposed yourselves but not in the way you intended. My advice, ask for forgiveness sincerely.

        God is not fragile, he does require obedience.

      • CaptSternn says:

        God isn’t fragile, but He can be jealous and vengeful. He is also loving and grants great blessings. All depends on how the person approaches Him.

      • CaptSternn says:

        I wonder about some people, Kabuzz. They curse God, they judge God and even try to put themselves on the level of God.

      • texan5142 says:

        There is no god. Kabuzz what does your god think about the way you have vilified his children coming across the border? You do not practice what you preach.

      • CaptSternn says:

        I pity you, Texan. Yes, God is quite real, as real as His creation, as real as our lives. Is it no wonder that the most hateful, intolerant, foul mouthed, angry and bigoted people are the very people that curse and deny God?

      • Owl of Bellaire says:

        kabuzz wanks, “Of course if you knew that Islam, Judaism and Christian [sic] all are started from Abraham.”

        Why are you so confident that we don’t know that, kabuzz? So far as I can tell, *most* people on this discussion board are better educated and informed than you are. And the common mythologies of Islam, Judaism, and Christianity (how can you not know the name of your own faith, btw?) aren’t particularly relevant to the discussion.

        “Of course you would need to understand faith and practice it to see how silly you are.”

        This is the common whine of every fragile cult: ‘You can’t really understand or criticize it unless you’re a part of it.’ That’s a pitiful dodge, performed only by the most vapid and thoughtless. Or, to put it more succinctly, by kabuzz.

        “OMFG is using the Lord’s name in vain with expletive added. It’s purpose put forth by GG was to diminish God and/or religion.”

        GG has said otherwise. Are you claiming telepathy now, kabuzz? That wouldn’t be any more absurd or counter-factual than your usual sad-sack mewlings on this forum.

        “God is not fragile, he does require obedience.”

        Au contraire, my fatuous feline friend: you’ve already exposed the pitiful fragility of your cultlike faith. And, since your God has no credible existence outside of your belief (“Faith is the evidence of things not seen” and all that), if your faith is fragile, then so is your God.

        Of course, we know how deeply insecure you are. You’re one of those new-wave Know-Nothing John-Birchers who’s so hapless that he has to trash other Christian denominations as not “Bible-believing” in order to prop up his own miserable corner of Christian doctrine.

      • kabuzz61 says:

        The silly bird makes me think of a sad, lonely, bitter person that has no happiness in life.

        Captain, it doesn’t amaze me how bitter and hateful to God and people of faith the liberals are. Everything they profess and demand others to do, such as tolerance, they don’t. They are the “do as I say not as I do” people.

        All we can and should do is pray.

      • tuttabellamia says:

        Texan, I respect that you are an atheist but your wife is Christian, so you are showing disrespect to her and to her God when you say F God.

        You once posted that a spiritual moment for you consists of eating grilled steak with a drink while listening to John Denver and watching the sunset. I’m no fan of John Denver, and I could scream “F John Denver” in your face because, after all, this is a free country, I have free speech, you’re a big boy, you’re not fragile, and neither is the late John Denver, but for me to use such language would be disrespectful to you. Or I could denigrate your wife or child in your presence — people you hold saced and dear — just like for other people God is sacred.

      • GG says:

        No, Tutt, just because someone uses “omfg” does not necessarily demean someone else’s god. As someone else posted it’s a common colloquialism. Just because you are offended does not mean every other Christian would be. I know many who also use it “omfg”. You may not think they are “christian” but they considers themselves to be and it’s not for anyone else to question their faith.

        It may just depend on how others religion influences their thought processes and how indoctrinated they were as a child growing up in a religious household.

      • Turtles Run says:

        Cappy wrote: What would y’all do if they had been copies of the Torah or Quran or even the Book of Mormon?

        Let me speak for the BoM. I would send one to any law maker but I do not want him or her to base their decisions upon it. As the founding fathers claimed: we are not a Christian nation.

      • GG says:

        Oh, Buzz, you are so full of shit it’s almost cute.

      • CaptSternn says:

        Yes, Turtles, I keep telling Owl that the constitution is not a religous document and that even atheists have the rights to life, liberty and property. But the bird still seems to think such rights are strictly religous ideas and do not apply to people that are not Christians.

        I do find it strange that you do not ask God for guidence in your daily life and decisions. Do you really reject your faith and God once you step outside the church? Is it all just for show?

      • GG says:

        Cappy, I’ve seen very little “christianity” in you. You proclaim your faith and religiosity while displaying callous disregard for most of humanity. Or are you trolling? That’s why people like you and Buzz get mocked.

        Do we mock TR for his faith? No, because he doesn’t wrap himself up in thinly cloaked piety and self-righteousness like some on here do.

        I know very few self-proclaimed Christians who walk the walk. I can think of one friend who actually follows the teachings of Jesus. She’s kind, non-judgmental and spends most of her time off work in soup kitchens and volunteer work for the under-privileged. She would never, ever say a non-believer is going to hell or some such nonsense.

      • kabuzz61 says:

        Again, GG uses her imaginary friends/neighbors as support for her rant. Not falling for it.

      • GG says:

        Bleat, bleat. Buzz, you are sad. Of course I have friends, family and a lover. I suppose that’s difficult for you to understand as you are a miserable old sod.

    • CaptSternn says:

      That was a very thoughtful donation by Mr. Atchison, and kind of Palazzo to see that they were distributed according the his wishes.

      • Houston-stay-at-Homer says:

        It seems that Atchison wants our Congress folks to look to the 10 Commandments for guidance as they make legislation.

        So, let’s go to the good book.

        1. Thou shalt have no other gods before me.

        Sure, I could see how that would impact voting on various health care and jobs initiatives, but I think we run the risk of upsetting Zeus.

        2. Thou shalt not make unto thee any graven image, or any likeness of any thing that is in heaven above, or that is in the earth beneath, or that is in the water under the earth. Thou shalt not bow down thyself to them, nor serve them: for I the Lord thy God am a jealous God, visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children unto the third and fourth generation of them that hate me; And shewing mercy unto thousands of them that love me, and keep my commandments.

        Wow…god is kind of a petty, insecure, jerk. Talk about not following due process and presumed guilt. If your great, great, great grandparents did not care for the Christian god, you are going to get visits from some iniquities. That kind of sucks, but I guess we could somehow see this somehow helping us as we evaluate various estate tax options.

        3. Thou shalt not take the name of the Lord thy God in vain; for the Lord will not hold him guiltless that taketh his name in vain.

        This one I get, and I whole-heartedly agree that we shouldn’t put “god damn” on our dollar bills. I am willing to consider, “gosh darn” as part of the national anthem however.

        4. Remember the sabbath day, to keep it holy. Six days shalt thou labour, and do all thy work: But the seventh day is the sabbath of the Lord thy God: in it thou shalt not do any work, thou, nor thy son, nor thy daughter, thy manservant, nor thy maidservant, nor thy cattle, nor thy stranger that is within thy gates: For in six days the Lord made heaven and earth, the sea, and all that in them is, and rested the seventh day: wherefore the Lord blessed the sabbath day, and hallowed it.

        Sure, I get this one too. I think we can all agree that the problem with Congress is that they are working too hard and need the day off.

        5. Honour thy father and thy mother: that thy days may be long upon the land which the Lord thy God giveth thee.

        It would be unseemly to disrespect your parents from the floor of the House, but I think we can all imagine Louie Gohmert’s and Sheila Jackson Lee’s parents wishing they could hide under a rock every time their children are placed in front of a TV camera and microphone.

        6. Thou shalt not kill.

        Well, I think Harry Reid is busily killing a bunch of “jobs bills”, if by “jobs bills” we mean six bills to roll back chemical and environmental standards to levels from 1977 and 1992, because we really have not learned anything about that science stuff in the past 20 or 30 years.

        7. Thou shalt not commit adultery.

        Again, I think we can all agree that we don’t even want to think about Gohmert doing anything like this, so yep, god wants you to keep your pants on when making decisions about legislation.

        8. Thou shalt not steal.

        I guess we could go with running up too much debt is “stealing from future generations”, so yep, god wants you to be fiscally conservative.

        9. Thou shalt not bear false witness against thy neighbour.

        Man, asking a politician to not lie may be like asking a fish to not swim, but hey, if this causes all our Christian politicians to stop lying to folks, it is nothing but a good thing.

        10. Thou shalt not covet thy neighbour’s house, thou shalt not covet thy neighbour’s wife, nor his manservant, nor his maidservant, nor his ox, nor his ass, nor any thing that is thy neighbour’s.

        But what if our neighbors have some really good ideas about things. Is it wrong to try some of those ideas for ourselves? Some of our worldly neighbors have really nice highway and rail systems…is it so wrong to covet some of those things?

      • kabuzz61 says:

        A 79 year old man wanted to gift congress at his expense and the liberals make fun of him. And Homer takes the time to poke fun of the Jews Torah. Disgusting to say the least. Homer you sink lower and lower in your civility.

      • Owl of Bellaire says:

        A cry for “civility” from an airily dismissive anti-Catholic bigot? You might want to get that hypocrisy lanced, kabuzz; it’s getting ugly and distended.

      • Houston-stay-at-Homer says:

        Buzz…Mr. Atchison specifically requested that the Congressfolks read and abide by the 10 commandments.

        I was just helping him and them see the linkages between the 10C and current legislative initiatives.

        How on earth is my helpfulness not civil?

      • tuttabellamia says:

        Kabuzz, I was just now reading over your exchange with Owl about Catholics, and to a certain degree you’re right. Catholics traditionally look toward intermediaries (Pope, Virgin Mary, saints) in their communications with God, whereas Protestants usually speak directly to God. Also, the Bible doesn’t play as important a role with Catholics as it does with Protestants.

        As a Catholic, I took catechism classes on Sundays during my elementary school years, and then I attended Catholic schools from seventh through twelfth grades, so I took theology and religion classes and read a lot from the Bible.

        In my home, however, the Bible didn’t have a very important role. I don’t think my mom even owned a Bible until a well-meaning Protestant gave one to her as a gift (just like in the story posted above) It was a beautiful King James version with a white leather cover and pages gilded in gold, and wrapped in protective plastic. She was not impressed, this Bible was the incomplete Protestant version anyway, plus she didn’t understand English, so she put it in a drawer.

        I took this beautiful King James Bible out of the drawer, ripped off the plastic, and wrote in red marker on the first page: THIS BOOK BELONGS TO TUTTABELLA. I was about 8 at the time. Arg!

        In contrast, Cap’s parents read from the Bible on a daily basis, and Cap was brought up by them to know the Bible well. People will say what they will about Cap’s interpretation, but at least he has read it, something I can’t say.

        And I don’t want to hear a peep out of anyone about Cap’s parents unless it’s nice or neutral. They are wonderful, beautiful people, and they became my parents after my mom passed away.

      • kabuzz61 says:

        Thanks Tutt. The Silly Bird knew what I meant but loves to play the victim and/or dumb.

        The Catholic Church founded by Peter was mirrored fairly closely on synogue ritual. Peter got in a heated discussion with Paul about converts. Peter wanted them to first become jews then Christians while Paul explained the direct and right route.

        Their liturgy is based on the bible and for that there is no doubt. Just the parisioners aren’t encouraged to study the bible. Not forbidden either. But you will be hard pressed to find a bible study class.

      • kabuzz61 says:

        Chris, I don’t have any problem with the Koran or Torah being passed out. I am seeing some projection in your surprise. Maybe it is you that adhors any holy work to be distributed.

      • Crogged says:

        Oh please, FoxNews and those weird websites DanMan reads would EXPLODE if this were to happen, (hmmmmm, calling the Daily Show right now……)

      • Owl of Bellaire says:

        So, Tutt, do you believe kabuzz is correct in drawing a distinction between “Bible-believing churches” and Catholic parishes which, according to him, don’t fit that term?

        It’s fine to read from the Bible on a daily basis, and to know the Bible well. Other people derive great comfort from *The Celestine Prophecies*, or the *Chicken Soup for the Soul* books, or regular re-encounters with *The Lord of the Rings* or *Star Trek*. To each her or his own.

        What’s wrong is deciding that your personal interpretation of the Bible is uniquely correct, and should be imposed upon others, cobelievers and unbelievers alike, either through your own actions or through the actions of those for whom you cast your ballot for that purpose.

      • Owl of Bellaire says:

        Yes, kabuzz: I knew exactly what you meant. You said it pretty clearly, again and again, even as you tried to equivocate your way out of it.

        You don’t think Catholics are “Bible-believing” Christians. It’s the same anti-Papist pap as characterized the Know-Nothing Party from which you TP types descend. (And the John Birch Society loons, too: another progenitor.)

      • Turtles Run says:

        Tutt wrote: Also, the Bible doesn’t play as important a role with Catholics as it does with Protestants.

        If I am not mistaken I thought the Catholic Church was older than the Bible. Sure some of the scriptures are older but the official Bible did not come into being nearly two centuries after the Church was formed.

        It is easy to understand why the Bible is not taken as an infallible by Catholics like many Protestants because they were there at the beginning.

    • Crogged says:

      I don’t care that ‘non-Christians’ might be offended (if they live in the South this wouldn’t be the first time for dealing with a ‘witnessing’) but I’m really wondering which commandment deals with regulation of financial derivative instruments?

      • Owl of Bellaire says:

        Or patent law. Or regulation of genetically modified organisms. Or oil-exploration subsidies.

    • Owl of Bellaire says:

      kabuzz wanks, “Of course if you knew that Islam, Judaism and Christian [sic] all are started from Abraham.”

      Why are you so confident that we don’t know that, kabuzz? So far as I can tell, *most* people on this discussion board are better educated and informed than you are. And the common mythologies of Islam, Judaism, and Christianity (how can you not know the name of your own faith, btw?) aren’t particularly relevant to the discussion.

      “Of course you would need to understand faith and practice it to see how silly you are.”

      This is the common whine of every fragile cult: ‘You can’t really understand or criticize it unless you’re a part of it.’ That’s a pitiful dodge, performed only by the most vapid and thoughtless. Or, to put it more succinctly, by kabuzz.

      “OMFG is using the Lord’s name in vain with expletive added. It’s purpose put forth by GG was to diminish God and/or religion.”

      GG has said otherwise. Are you claiming telepathy now, kabuzz? That wouldn’t be any more absurd or counter-factual than your usual sad-sack mewlings on this forum.

      “God is not fragile, he does require obedience.”

      Au contraire, my fatuous feline friend: you’ve already exposed the pitiful fragility of your cultlike faith. And, since your God has no credible existence outside of your belief (“Faith is the evidence of things not seen” and all that), if your faith is fragile, then so is your God.

      Of course, we know how deeply insecure you are. You’re one of those new-wave Know-Nothing John-Birchers who’s so hapless that he has to trash other Christian denominations as not “Bible-believing” in order to prop up his own miserable corner of Christian doctrine.

    • tuttabellamia says:

      Owl, would you say “Effing Santa Claus” in the presence of a child eagerly awaiting gifts from Santa?

    • CaptSternn says:

      From each according his ability, to each according his need.

      No.

    • tuttabellamia says:

      I find Alaska’s system of paying out dividends to its residents interesting. I kind of like the idea of profit sharing.

      • tuttabellamia says:

        It was nice to read about the minimum income without the cloud of faint sarcasm that usually hangs over Chris’s blog entries.

      • tuttabellamia says:

        I find the following comment from the Atlantic article contradictory:

        “And with an unconditional basic income, workers wouldn’t have to worry about how making more money might lead to the loss of crucial benefits.”
        **********************************
        I thought the idea behind the basic income was to streamline the process, reduce current benefits, or even use the basic income to replace all benefits. So how is it that a great thing about the basic income is that it will PROTECT benefits.? So, we would get a basic income PLUS the usual benefits?

      • Owl of Bellaire says:

        Tutt — No. Perhaps you’re unaware of some of the problems with our current welfare systems. Often making more money, through your own effort and initiative, reduces welfare payments to the extent that you end up with *less* money than when you started. It’s a disincentive, and I think we can all agree that’s wrong.

      • tuttabellamia says:

        Owl, I understand how it works, and I totally agree the current system is counterproductive, but the point of the basic income is to reduce or replace current benefits, not protect them. That’s what I find contradictory.

      • Owl of Bellaire says:

        Right. Because you’re misreading the sentence.

        “And with an unconditional basic income, workers wouldn’t have to worry about how making more money might lead to the loss of crucial benefits.”

        The “crucial benefits” are those under the former system. The abolition of that former system in favor of a guaranteed basic income thus removes the worries associated with those former benefits.

      • tuttabellamia says:

        Correct. I see now.

      • Bobo Amerigo says:

        A Canadian friend said that Canadians can invest in the national tv/film fund and get paid dividends.

        He received a check a few months ago.

        I thought that was interesting.

  15. geoff1968 says:

    And then there’s that church that you go into. Everyone’s got an eye patch, or a prosthetic ear, or a hand, or…maybe they don’t have a tongue. Holy Jesus of St Vinny Van G! The real deal literalists. The pastor’s completely truncated. Someone else had to cut off that last offending member.

    The whole notion of identity politics. It’s sort of like Jennifer Aniston’s character in “Office Space.” By her bling ye shall know her. Or maybe it’s Miley’s all grown up now and she’s asserting her womanhood by feigning sex acts on TV?

    I dunno. I’m but one man in this vast human encampment, and when I go into my closet I am but one with the universe.

    • tuttabellamia says:

      I don’t get it.

      • CaptSternn says:

        I think he is referring to the verses that speak of plucking out eye and cutting off hands if they cause you to stumble or are offensive.

      • tuttabellamia says:

        Ironically, those “solutions,” however extreme, would be simple and effective.

      • tuttabellamia says:

        Disclaimer: I was just saying.

      • Bart-1 says:

        me neither (but then I’m pretty subdued today).

      • objv says:

        Argh … would geoff be going to The Church of the Silent, One-eyed Pirate?

      • tuttabellamia says:

        His last paragraph is the most enigmatic.

      • tuttabellamia says:

        I wonder what the Bible would prescribe as punishment for identity theft?

      • tuttabellamia says:

        Destroy one’s fingerprint?

      • Bart-1 says:

        Tutt, most of the Levitical Law regarding most theft required paying back double to the one stolen from (restitution).

      • tuttabellamia says:

        So the victim of ID theft receives dual identiity?

      • Bart-1 says:

        double whatever damages were done

      • bubbabobcat says:

        So according to the Bible, victims of bart’s sockpuppet trolling…get more sockpuppet ID’s?

        Oh yay.

      • Bart-1 says:

        what is the punishment for contributing nothing but trolling your anger and personal grudges?

      • bubbabobcat says:

        I dunno bart, what has your punishment been?

        What did you tell Jesus this past Sunday? That you were a goooood troll?

      • bubbabobcat says:

        Hey bart-1/seriouscynic/usincrisis/Anse identity thief/fake DanMan, how many times must I restate a basic truism a 6 year old would understand for YOU to get it?

        Don’t want to be called out for being a consummately pathetic and stupid sockpuppet troll bully who constantly can’t avoid outing himself?

        DON’T. BE. ONE.

        So quit whining bart and be a man for once in your life. You deserve and own this outing by YOUR OWN ACTIONS OF YOUR OWN FREE WILL.

        What, someone put a gun to your head to make you troll with a fake identity? AGAIN?

        What new pathetic simpering excuse can you come up with now to try to excuse or whitewash your true inveterate jerkwad sockpuppet troll nature bart-1/seriouscynic/usincrisis/Anse identity thief/fake DanMan???

      • Bart-1 says:

        same old, same old. Obviously, the boy has run out of material. you are nothing but a bore.

      • bubbabobcat says:

        And you are nothing but a troll bart. But you, I, everyone here, and your God/Allah/Yahweh alllll know that, don’t we bart?

      • tuttabellamia says:

        So, what is my punishment for having reignited the argument between the two of you?

      • kabuzz61 says:

        Tutt, it is always a one sided argument.

      • Owl of Bellaire says:

        Tutt asks, “So, what is my punishment for having reignited the argument between the two of you?”

        I think you’re already experiencing it.

      • tuttabellamia says:

        My “punishment” was a good laugh. Those two are funny as heck.

      • Owl of Bellaire says:

        Meh. I find them both annoying.

  16. objv says:

    Ha! There is as much of a chance of me wearing a big, baggy, black Amish dress as of Owl changing his views on abortion.

  17. johnofgaunt75 says:

    Interesting prediction and this is certainly a possibility.

    Perhaps the past history of the Amish are a pretense to what could happen with today’s religious radicals The spiritual ancestors of the Amish (and other Anabaptists such as the Mennonites), we not always the peaceful, pacifist, outsiders that they are today. Originally the Anabaptists were outspoken radicals who evangelized and sought converts. They were often openly hostile to those they felt were acting contrary to their particular interpretation of God’s will. They sought political power in order to bring about their idea of a Godly, utopian society.

    Eventually a group of Anabaptists seized political power in the German city of Münster. They expelled the city’s bishop and pressed forward with several radical religious and social reforms. They predicted that they were building a “New Jerusalem” and that the end of the world was neigh. Really it was very similar to a David Koresh or Jim Jones situation. Eventually, the city was put under siege by a large army lead by Münster’s former bishop. This all ended when the city was overrun a little over a year later and the Anabaptists leaders where captured, publically tortured to death and their broken and beaten bodies were hung in metal cages from a prominent church in the city. The cages still hang there to this day. Following this disaster, the remaining Anabaptists rejected violence and vowed to live a peaceful existence apart from the rest of society that they consider un-Godly. They also rejected evangelism and essentially refused to accept new members in their movement. There are some really interesting books and podcasts out there about the Siege of Münster for those interested.

    • Owl of Bellaire says:

      “They predicted that they were building a ‘New Jerusalem’ and that the end of the world was neigh.”

      But they weren’t just horsing around…. 😉

    • johnofgaunt75 says:

      Pretense. Ah. Prediction.

      • objv says:

        Owl, please, please, please help me with my grammar. Unfortunately, that would mean you would have spend ALL your time making corrections and have no time making comments of your own. 🙂

      • objv says:

        … to make comments of your own.

      • objv says:

        JoG75: Yes, your information was very interesting. Some of my ancestors were Anabaptists, but I didn’t know the history. Thanks!

      • johnofgaunt75 says:

        It’s a story that is rarely studied, at least in English. Most of the books about it are in German.

        I’ve actually been to Münster and you can see the torture devices they used against the Anabaptist leaders. Bad way to go.

  18. “…their community celebrates same-sex families, vilifies gun owners, undermines religious faith, and encourages government dependency.” Well, yes, but never mind.

    Just curious, Chris. You seem to conflate gun ownership with biblical literalism and religious faith with ignorance and/or hypocrisy. Am I missing something, or does that about sum it up?

    • Owl of Bellaire says:

      Frequent correlation does not require causation or conflation.

      • True, Owl, but Chris’ tone suggests the three are intimately linked in Chris’ mind. One can’t help but wonder, given his dismissive, disdainful and paternalistic treatment of his ‘friends,’ exactly how many ‘friends’ Chris has. One suspects the denizens of this new Amish-like community will adopt the name, “Ordo amiciciae Chris,” or some such.

      • Owl of Bellaire says:

        I did some research. It’s interesting.

        http://www.people-press.org/2013/03/12/section-3-gun-ownership-trends-and-demographics/

        “The general profile of gun owners in America differs substantially from the general public. Roughly three-quarters (74%) of gun owners are men, and 82% are white. Taken together, 61% of adults who own guns are white men. Nationwide, white men make up only 32% of the U.S. adult population.

        “Gun owners and those who do not own guns differ politically. While 37% of all adults identify with or lean toward the Republican Party, that proportion jumps to 51% among gun owners. Among those in households without guns, just 27% identify with the Republican Party or lean Republican, while a majority (61%) are Democrats or lean Democratic.”

        Nothing specific about attitudes toward marriage equality, religious faith, or attitudes toward government welfare programs… but what are the general attitudes of Republicans toward such issues?

        So perhaps Chris has more justification than I at first thought.

      • Houston-stay-at-Homer says:

        Pew has looked at this too:

        Our TP friends, while ostensibly interested in fiscally issues, sure do seem to have highly similar views on guns, gays, and gals getting abortions.

        Favor recognition of same sex marriage: 26% compared to almost 50% overall
        Abortion should be legal: 34% compared to over 50% overall
        Favor of controlling gun ownership: 18% compared to almost 50% overall

        Nate Silver did some research on this, and owning a gun will more strongly predict political party affiliation than just about any other characteristic. Whether someone owns a gun is a more powerful predictor of a person’s political party than her gender, whether she identifies as gay or lesbian, whether she is Hispanic, whether she lives in the South or a number of other demographic characteristics.

        Non-religious republicans own almost as many guns as evangelical and protestant republicans. In all religious groups, 15% to 35% more republicans own guns than do democrats.

        Liberal democrats aren’t the ones running around trying to block recognition of same sex marriage and to restrict access to abortion. Gun owners certainly are not all social conservatives, but their voting habits are highly, highly similar.

      • Owl, perhaps you might wish to consult a somewhat more authoritative (and up-to-date) source on gun ownership trends:

        http://www.nssfblog.com/the-growing-diversity-of-gun-ownership/

        and

        http://www.nssfblog.com/americas-new-target-shooters-younger-female-and-urban/

        Looks like you might have to check in your stereotypes at the door. Speaking anecdotally, I’ve watched the demographics of the shooting sports change considerably during the Obama era. Gender and racial diversity is now the name of the game in the shooting world, as a visit to any of our local ranges or weekend matches will quickly demonstrate. A variety of gun and ammunition manufacturers are now catering directly to women with products designed expressly for women (Hornady, Sig Sauer, Ruger, Taurus – all major industry players – spring immediately to mind).

        BTW, I think all this diversity in the shooting world is good thing. It’s also something that’s likely to catch traditional lib candidates unawares at the polls, but I don’t really have a problem with that, either.

      • Owl of Bellaire says:

        TThor, I’m disappointed that someone who claims to be as rational as you would rely on such junky sources.

        Great, more women may be purchasing guns — at least, according to a single year’s survey, and voluntary responses by gun retailers. The National Shooting Sports Foundation is, of course, an unimpeccable source in all of this, with no conceivable reason to shade or distort any information. And purported data about gender balance doesn’t even address Chris’ point about ideological alignment. Meanwhile, the rest of this tripe-filled blog post is mere hand-waving.

        Why, you almost sound like any desperate conservative. Since reality has a well-demonstrated liberal bias, far too many of you seem to be leaving for elsewhere.

      • Owl, you might also peruse the Texas DPS stats for CHL licenses.

        http://www.txdps.state.tx.us/rsd/chl/reports/demographics.htm

        In 2008 18% of CHLs issued went to women. In 2013 28% of CHLs issued went to women. If this trend continues female CHL holders will outnumber males in just a few more years. Perhaps a slight modification of an old shooting aphorism is in order:

        God created man (and woman), Samuel Colt made men (and women) equal.

      • Owl of Bellaire says:

        Sure, two points make a line. By looking at the rate of spread of the Mississippi Delta, we can thus demonstrate that the Gulf shoreline was once somewhere in Canada. (Where it was once, of course, in the geological past, but not at all because of the Mississippi.) By looking at the height of the typical Roman versus the height of the typical modern Westerner, we can thus show that we will all be Nephilim-like giants within a few millennia.

        Again, TTHor, I’m disappointed. You’re continuing to dig in on the issue of women, with inadequate evidence, when that’s the most minor of side issues to Chris’ point and the other documentation that’s been presented to you.

    • And Owl, you would be extremely unwise to disregard the National Shooting Sports Foundation as a reliable source of information. This is an industry focused group, and a great deal of money for the industry rides on the accuracy of their statistics.

      • Owl of Bellaire says:

        TThor, it seems to me that you’ve just proven my point.

        But you seem to have taken leave of your senses and your logical abilities at some point in the recent past.

    • objv says:

      Owl and Homer: Hmmm … according to Pew, Democrats are twice as likely as Republicans to have received food stamps in their lifetime. 39% of black women have received assistance, and the percentage for Hispanic women is 31% versus 19% for white women.

      http://www.pewresearch.org/fact-tank/2013/07/12/the-politics-and-demographics-of-food-stamp-recipients/

      Now, say, I were to make some sweeping judgements about black Democrat women being on the government dole and being promiscuous. (70% of births out of wedlock.) Wouldn’t that be considered offensive?

      Yet you two seem to have no problem with Chris’ ongoing characterizations of white, southern, republican, religious, and/or gun-toting males. Why is it OK to stereotype one but not the other?

      • Owl of Bellaire says:

        Um, perhaps because 39% (Black women who have received assistance) is far less than 74% or 82% (percentage of gun owners who are male or White), or even 51% (percentage of gun owners who are Republican)?

        Making a stereotype based on a third of a population is just silly. Making a stereotype based on three-quarters of a population comes closer to describing reality.

      • objv says:

        Owl, over 70% of black births are to unmarried mothers, and Homer was the one who was throwing out statistics dealing with figures under 50%. The point I was trying to make was that it would be unfair to extrapolate data to make sweeping judgements as to the morality and character of black, Democrat women AND white, Republican men.

        To give you another example, consider this:

        “Over the past two months, Yahoo, Google, Facebook and LinkedIn have reported that their staffs are between 62% and 70% male. Whites and Asians make up between 88% and 91%.”

        http://www.usatoday.com/story/tech/2014/07/23/twitter-diversity-hiring/13060901/

        Would it be fair to characterize these tech companies as racist, sexist, bigoted and exclusionary? Twitter’s workforce is only 2% black and 4% Hispanic.

      • Houston-stay-at-Homer says:

        Objv…I tend to find a willful misunderstanding and misinterpretation of big numbers to be almost as more offensive as stereotyping, but I digress.

        Let’s take a closer look at your data, and hopefully a closer look at your point (keeping in mind that I’m not sure what exactly your point is).

        You seem to be making a relatively common mistake of looking at the data from different angles and trying to equate the results. Whether you are making that mistake on purpose or not, I have no idea.

        The gender of a gun owner is a bit easier to define, but the gender of a welfare recipient is harder because it is based families and children, but hey, we’ll somehow try to count little Black girls in your “Black women” group.

        Of gun owners, about 60% are White men.
        Of welfare recipients, about 30%-35% are Black. If we liberally spread that group across Black men and women in an attempt to favor your position, maybe we are looking at 25% of welfare recipients are Black women.

        So, when thinking of the “face of gun ownership” it is much easier to think of a dude (75% of people owning guns have a penis) who is White. When thinking of the “face of welfare” the most typical face would be a poor, rural, White woman.

        So, your stereotype of welfare recipients versus the stereotype of gun owners is a bit off.

        Saying gun owners are typically White males, is accurate.

        Saying welfare recipients are typically Black females would be inaccurate, and it would make one question the motivation for someone making such an inaccurate statement.

        Now, there are many more accurate characterizations you could make.

        You could say that Black women are significantly more likely to be on welfare than their White counterparts, and that would be accurate.

        So, back to your point…what is your point?

        Are you trying to suggest that most gun owners aren’t males and/or White? What sweeping generalizations am I making that have you concerned?

        Gun owners are much more likely to have a penis, much more likely to vote Republican, much more likely to oppose gay marriage, and much more likely to oppose legal abortion.

        As with any big data, there is a wide range of people that fall into the populations. There are undoubtedly many gay, abortion-loving, liberal democrat gun owners in the US, but their percentage of the total gun owning population is small.

        One other thing, being promiscuous has little to do having an out of wedlock birth. Folks who get pregnant with a one-night stand (which might be considered promiscuous) are more likely to get an abortion whereas folks in a relationship (but not married) are more likely to have the baby.

      • kabuzz61 says:

        Homer and his feigned ignorance. Of course he didn’t answer your 72% black women who have out of marriage children. That’s different.

        Welcome Objv to the obfuscating and patronizing duo of The Silly Bird and Homer. Apparently you don’t know how to read statistics.

      • CaptSternn says:

        They know, OV and Kabuzz. But it is something they don’t want brought out into the light of day for people to see.

      • bubbabobcat says:

        Actual birth rates of both unmarried and married Black women are lower than Whites.

        http://www.theatlantic.com/sexes/archive/2013/06/understanding-out-of-wedlock-births-in-black-america/277084/

        Context. Nuance. And OV still lacking it see. I am shocked, absolutely shocked I say.

      • Houston-stay-at-Homer says:

        Stern and Buzz, most of the time I like to believe you two are not so partisan that you are blind to rationality, but I am continually reminded that you two only get the point of something when it is poking you in the ass.

        I think most everyone knows and understands that 70%+ of Black births are out of wedlock. I think it is painfully obvious that you two don’t understand how that number comes about, but I do not expect you two to understand many things beyond a headline.

        If you are interested, I can share much insight on the out of wedlock birth rate among Black women, but I don’t think you two are really interested.

        However, that was not the point of Objv comment. She was suggesting promiscuity as an issue, and that was what was addressed.

        Objv’s actual point is probably lost in the wind if there ever was a point with which to begin. She seems to suggest that White males do not make up a majority of gun owners and to suggest that Black women are the majority of welfare recipients, but surely this cannot be the case because there is pretty verifiable data contrary to that assumption.

      • bubbabobcat says:

        You know, it’s allllllways fun to have a battle of wits with trollbart because he never fails to enter the fray totally unarmed.

        So trollbart refutes a study from the “National Center for Health Statistics” with a “study” from… well, we don’t know because they will only reveal their sources and methodology with a “$49.99 per month basic membership”.

        Trollbart self immolates yet again. Pass the popcorn….

      • Houston-stay-at-Homer says:

        Now…on to Buzz’s comment of, “Of course he didn’t answer your 72% black women who have out of marriage children.”

        I don’t know whether to give Buzz the benefit of the doubt and assume he’s an idiot who doesn’t understand math or to just assume Buzz is a racist intentionally distorting data to allege something negative about Black folks.

        Of course, those two things are not mutually exclusive, so it is certainly possible that Buzz is both an idiot who doesn’t get math and a racist.

        Buzz I would love for you to explain how 72% of Black women have out of marriage children. I’ll sit patiently while you count on all your fingers and toes a way to make that work.

        Nah, we’ll just roll up a newspaper and whack the bad kitty.

        We’ll start with your 72% of Black women who have children out of wedlock.

        First, that is a hard number to get to when you consider about 20% of Black women never have kids at all (and that number is growing).

        So, now we have a maximum of 80% of Black women having kids, and you think 72% are having them out of wedlock.

        To point out the absurdity of your statement, that would require that no more than 8% of Black women are married and that every non-married Black woman would need to be having a baby.

        If I go with my good angels and just assume you don’t understand math, what you meant to say is that, “of Black births, 72% occur out of wedlock”, not that 72% of Black women have a baby out of wedlock.

        That certainly is a troubling statistic, and one with which everyone is familiar. However, it is odd that you neglect to point out that the out-of-wedlock birth rate for Black women is actually on a rather stark decline over the past several years.

        I wonder why you would neglect to mention that? It would seem that this rather dramatic decline would be praised by conservatives worried about Black families.

      • Houston-stay-at-Homer says:

        Bubba, while poking Bart normally is so easy it is hard to resist, if the color on the screen you are looking at is not brilliantly clear, you will not see the difference between the blue and green lines in the article.

        While the birth rate for unmarried Black women has dropped more dramatically than the rate for White women, Black women still have a slightly higher rate.

        However, the birth rate for married Black women is lower than the birth rate for married White women, thus dramatically increasing the percentage of out of wedlock births of Black women.

        Overall, the birth and fertility rates of Black women are slightly (approx 2%) higher than the birth and fertility rates of White women.

      • Houston-stay-at-Homer says:

        Hey Buzz…I wish we had an edit function here.

        After re-reading my comment, I’m feeling bad about the “idiot” comment.

        Some folks just get confused with statistics and it is not that they are idiots. Sorry about that.

        Now, if you did understand the stats and still made that statement, then yes, you still would be a racist asshat.

      • bubbabobcat says:

        Thanks for the correction Houston. You’re right, I misread one of the charts and unmarried Black women still have a higher birth rate than unmarried White women. Though as you noted, it is declining rapidly for Black women and close to mirroring the same rate as White women.

      • objv says:

        Homer, you asked me what my point was, here it is again copied from above. Please read s l o w l y before going off on a dozen tangents.

        “The point I was trying to make was that it would be unfair to extrapolate data to make sweeping judgements as to the morality and character of black, Democrat women AND white, Republican men.:”

        To me, it is offensive to make blanket statements about black Democrat women, promiscuity, and welfare based on a few statistics. By the same token, it is offensive to categorize white males, gun owners, members of the tea party and the religious as bigots.

        It is one thing to throw out statistics such as the one about 50% of gun owners being Republican or that over 70% of births to black mothers are out of wedlock. It is quite another to use those statistics to stereotype and form a narrative about large groups of people regarding their morality, intelligence, and motivations.

        If you reread my comments, you should be able deduce that I had no intention of making any kind of attempt to stereotype black women. In fact, I was doing the opposite.

      • Houston-stay-at-Homer says:

        Obj…I appreciate the encouragement to read slowly, and I did that. Unfortunately, you might have to type even more slowly so that I can understand your point.

        As I asked earlier (and maybe you were not reading slow enough to notice) what sweeping generalizations of White, male gun owners am I making?

      • objv says:

        Homer, I was referring to tthor’s comment regarding Lifer’s ongoing narrative about white conservative males.

        “Just curious, Chris. You seem to conflate gun ownership with biblical literalism and religious faith with ignorance and/or hypocrisy. Am I missing something, or does that about sum it up?”

        Owl brought up some statistics on gun owners, you joined in the fray … then some others offered opinions, and apparently tthor’s original comment got forgotten in the mix.

        If you look to my first comment, it is clear that I was referring to Chris’ characterizations and the problem of using statistics to come to come to conclusions about large population groups.

      • Houston-stay-at-Homer says:

        Obj…

        When you are talking about White conservative males, it really is not a stereotype to say almost 80% are opposed to recognizing same sex marriage and about 80% think abortion should be illegal. It is a reality.

        Your example with Black women missing the mark because it misses reality. The majority of Black women have not received welfare, and the vast majority are not having children out of wedlock (which you portray as promiscuity).

        The difference is that I am taking a small proportion of the population (White, male, conservatives) and making an assessment of that population (White, male, conservatives) based on information from that population (White, male, conservatives). When the vast majority of White, gun owning, conservative men also happily vote to allow gay folks to get formally married, this extrapolation is not too big a stretch.

        You are taking Black women, taking a small portion of that group (Black women who are on welfare or meet your definition of promiscuous), and then extrapolating back to the larger group of Black women.

        It may be uncomfortable for White, male conservatives to be called bigots for fighting against recognition of gay marriage, but them being uncomfortable hearing it does not make it any less true.

      • objv says:

        First of all, I never said that black women were promiscuous. I said that it was wrong to come to that conclusion! You are misrepresenting what I said. I said the opposite.

        Where do you get your figures on 80% of conservative men being against abortion or gay marriage?

        If you look at the chart in the link provided 61% of Republicans (and those who lean Republican) oppose gay marriage. 31% of Democrats (and those who lean Democrat) oppose gay marriage. That is a difference of only 30% between the two political parties.

        Even if we go by your higher percentage of 80% for white, conservative men, there would still be a one in five chance that an individual would support gay marriage. There would be a smaller but still significant likelihood that a Democrat male would also oppose same-sex marriage. So, I ask you would it be right to stereotype an individual when there is a chance that your stereotype would be wrong?

      • Houston-stay-at-Homer says:

        Obj…I think we might have our meanings or our intentions mixed up.

        It is not a stereotype to say “most White, conservative males are against gay marriage” or to say that 80% of White, conservative males are against gay marriage”.

        About 25% of people who identify as GOP or “conservative” favor recognition of gay marriage. Women are much more likely to support gay marriage than are men (by about 20 percentage points), so estimating that only about 20% of male conservatives favor recognizing gay marriage is probably a lenient estimate at that.

        A broad brush stereotype would be, “72% of Black children are born out of wedlock, so most Black women must be promiscuous.” That would be conflating two different groups to draw a negative conclusion about the larger group.

        A rather accurate portrayal would be “80% of White, male conservatives are against gay marriage, so most White male conservatives are bigots”.

        Saying “80% of White, male conservatives are against gay marriage, so most White people are bigots would be an inaccurate broad brush stereotype.

        However, if I have in the past said, “White, male conservatives are all bigots”, I apologize, and I am not normally so careless about my words.

      • objv says:

        As far as abortion …
        68% of Republicans are pro-life (both male and female)
        32% of Democrats are pro-life (35% for males/30% for females)

        Again, it is difficult to draw conclusions about individuals and stereotype them based on a 36% difference in beliefs.

        http://www.pewresearch.org/fact-tank/2013/10/11/conservatives-continue-to-oppose-same-sex-marriage-but-by-smaller-margins/

      • Houston-stay-at-Homer says:

        Obj…with regard to your link:

        it says,
        “Today, roughly three-in-ten Republicans (29%) and political conservatives (30%) say they support same-sex marriage, compared with 12 years ago, when 21% of Republicans and 18% of conservatives expressed this view. About a quarter (23%) of white evangelical Protestants now say they favor same-sex marriage, compared with 13% in 2001.”

        So, we know that about 29% to 30% of conservatives support gay marriage. Sorry that my rounding of 25% was so wildly off.

        So, with your link, we have 70%-71% of GOP/Conservatives opposing gay marriage.

        We also know that women are significantly more in favor of gay marriage than are men.

        So, I would guess that my initial 80% figure might be more like 75% to 76%.

        I apologize for the gross negligence of missing the percentages by a handful of points, and clearly not accurately representing the amount of bigotry in male conservatives.

        We shall view it as progress that rather than 80% of them are bigots towards gay folks, it is a mere 75% who are bigots.

      • Houston-stay-at-Homer says:

        Obj…when you think of political issues today, a spread of 32% to 68% is kind a huge.

        You do not think it is meaningful to note the difference that “less than 1/3 of this group believes X” while “more than 2/3 of that group believes X”.

        I mean, those are some pretty big differences.

        If it makes you feel better I will attempt to put “most” in front of statements when talking about these groups (which I think I’m pretty good about already), but at no point am I saying “all” of a particular group believes or acts the same way because it is never all of any group that does something.

        So, we’ll go with “Most White male conservatives are bigots when it comes to gay folks”, and “Most of the GOP does not believe a woman has the right to control her own body and believe women should be subjected to forced surgery against her will”.

      • objv says:

        Homer wrote: “A rather accurate portrayal would be “80% of White, male conservatives are against gay marriage, so most White male conservatives are bigots”.

        Still wrong, Homer. (Where did you get the 80%? Link please.), Opposing gay marriage does not necessarily make one a bigot. Some oppose same-sex marriage purely because of a religious belief that a marriage should be between a man and a woman but they still support civil unions and equal rights under the law. A bigot is a person who intensely dislikes or hates members of a specific group. A person can be against same-sex marriage and not be a bigot.

        Even though no one here has said that ALL conservative, white men are bigots, and I certainly do not think that you have said that, I believe you know what I am getting at. On this blog, conservative, white men are often lumped together to make it appear that they all walk in lock-step as far as abortion, gay rights, creationism, and gun control.. To be fair, those of us who are conservative have also stereotyped people unfairly. I’ll admit to taking aim at “liberals” occasionally.

      • Owl of Bellaire says:

        objv objects, “Some oppose same-sex marriage purely because of a religious belief that a marriage should be between a man and a woman but they still support civil unions and equal rights under the law.”

        If they want to forcefully impose their religious beliefs upon people who don’t share them, then they’re bigots. If they demand “civil unions” instead of “marriages”, insisting that “separate but equal” is a fantastic idea and will work perfectly, then they’re *historically ignorant* bigots.

        Religious people do not have a monopoly on the word “marriage”: it has both religious and secular meanings, which are often but not always congruent.

      • Houston-stay-at-Homer says:

        Obj…I attempted to explain my 80% number from your link and freely admitted it was probably more like 75% rather than 80%. Your link indicated that 70% or 71% of conservatives were against gay marriage, and since women are more in favor of gay marriage than are men, I bumped up that number to about 75% of conservative men are against gay marriage.

        If it would make you feel better, we can just pretend that men and women support gay marriage equally, and just conclude that 70% or 71% of conservative men are against gay marriage and are bigots.

        So hey, it is a positive day. We went from 80% of conservative men being bigots toward gay folks all the way down to 70%. Good progress for the day.

        I would assume you might not be so forgiving of folks who’s strongly held religious beliefs indicated that Black folks should not be allowed to marry White folks. I would assume you would think them bigots. The, “hey, I like gay people just fine, I just don’t believe they should have all the same rights and privileges as I do” is nothing but bigotry.

        This seems to be something of a recurring issue for you. You seem to feel that when talking about statistics and group differences, folks are talking about every single of the members of that group. That is not what folks are doing and not what the statistics would indicate.

        In a previous conversation, you essentially said that comments that White students do better on the SAT, GRE, etc. means that I have low expectations of individual minority students. That is a very faulty conclusion. Give me a random sample of 10,000 kids from each demographic group, and I would get the rank order of their average SAT scores right 99 times out of 100. Give me any one kid from any demographic group and my expectation would be that they will do fine on the SAT if they work at it.

        Men, on average are taller than women. Knowing that fact does not make the fact that many WNBA players are taller than me any less true.

      • objv says:

        Owl, personally, I am for gay marriage. I don’t feel that ministers should be compelled to perform a religious ceremony if it goes against their beliefs, but marriage should be a legal option for same-sex couples.

        However, those who oppose gay marriage are not necessarily bigots since there is usually no hatred or desire to cause harm.

        Was Barack Obama a bigot up until two years ago? He said,”I believe marriage is between a man and a woman. I am not in favor of gay marriage.”

        Religious people are frequently torn between the desire to show love for all people and the acknowledgement that the Bible puts limits on certain forms of sexual behavior.

        Here is another example. Is this young woman a bigot?

        http://www.desiringgod.org/blog/posts/love-letter-to-a-lesbian

      • objv says:

        Homer, I see I forgot to hit the refresh key before posting my last entry to you, and you managed to get a couple posts in between. Also, I see another post afterwards. I am really behind!

        I felt it important to respond to Owl since his post meshed with yours. I will get to your posts later since I have run out of time.

      • Houston-stay-at-Homer says:

        Obj…

        A couple of issues. I don’t think for a second that Obama (or Hillary) opposed gay marriage two years ago or even five years ago. I think they are politicians who lie in order to get elected.

        I do not believe the Marco Rubio, Chris Christi, or even Ted Cruz gives one whit about gay marriage, and I believe they understand it is a stupid issue and that of course gay folks should be able to get married and have it recognized by the state. However, they are politicians that lie to get elected.

        Other than Santorum and Bachmann, I would venture to say not a single serious GOP candidate in 2012 really believe gays should not be able to obtain marriage licenses, even governor goodhair.

        However, if Obama did not believe that gay folks deserve the same rights and privileges as straight folks, then yep, the man is/was a bigot.

        The old canard of “ministers should not be required to perform such ceremonies” is a rather silly argument about something that doesn’t happen. There does not seem to be a spat of Synagogues being required to marry two atheists or Baptist churches being required to marry a lovely Hindu couple. Heck at several points along the way, the Catholic church could have refused to let me get married in the church, and I would not have been able to sue them. Those things would not be any different for a gay or straight couple.

      • objv says:

        Homer: I believe you completely when you say that you can guess SAT scores of large groups based on demographic data. I don’t remember the discussion that we had in the past, but I don’t believe YOUR expectation has any effect on SAT scores, However,I believe that if low income, minority kids are continuously told they belong in a group that scores low, there will be some negative psychological effects.

        I would have been grouped with low income kids, but my scores typically were in the 97th percentile. (I took the ACT, PSAT, and NLN tests. National League for Nursing testing was for entry into an RN program and was longer and more comprehensive.)

        While, yes, I completely agree that individual results vary, a large part of why I was successful was due to expectations others had for me. I grew up in a German immigrant community which placed a high value on learning. I am naturally a very lazy person but always felt pressure to do well in school. The group I grew up with got As, so I had to get As or I would lose status. German kids were expected to be smart much like Asian kids are today, and for the most part my childhood friends have done well for themselves.

        Now, if I hadn’t had the same group of friends,or parents that encouraged learning, or if I had been told that students with my ethnicity scored poorly; I would not done so well in school. In other words expectations of what I could accomplish made all the difference.

  19. Owl of Bellaire says:

    Chris, please, for the love of all that is holy, fix the first sentence of this blog entry.

    “Their” is not a singular pronoun, no matter how much some radical feminists (I say with full awareness of the irony) would like to anoint it as a gender-neutral option for that purpose.

    You could just say “an” rather than “their” without appreciably changing the meaning of the sentence. That and a slight rewrite might even let you save the punch until the end: “A close friend and fellow Texas ex-pat, living in an affluent East Coast city, is looking to escape that godless Gomorrah.”

    Thanks from a faithful reader and admittedly nit-picky proofreader.

    • tuttabellamia says:

      Isn’t there something wrong with the last part of this phrase as well?

      “they aren’t so doggedly committed to their worldview that they’ll turn their back on career, education, and ambition to escape from pluralism”

      Or maybe I’m misreading it.

      • Owl of Bellaire says:

        Yeah, it makes sense only if they have a collective back. !!

      • Bart-1 says:

        My problem is with the final conclusion makes. “We could be in for a bumpy ride.” Who exactly is “we” and WHY does he think that?

      • tuttabellamia says:

        Maybe the bumpy ride has something to do with the Amish horse and buggy.

      • Bart-1 says:

        doesn’t follow Tutt. The ones in the horse-drawn buggies would only be the Evangelicals who emulate the Amish. Hardly a “we” for either Chris, his left-leaning friends, or the American public in general.

      • Bart-1 says:

        ooops, had better fix my omitted pronoun.Looks like the grammar Nazis are out early. The conclusion “HE” makes.

      • tuttabellamia says:

        Owl, that too, I guess, the part about the collective back, but what I was trying to get at was:

        I don’t understand “they aren’t so doggedly committed to their worldview that they’ll turn their back on . . . ambition to escape from pluralism.” Shouldn’t it be the reverse?

      • Owl of Bellaire says:

        Nouns used as abstract ideals can often be used in the singular. Sure, we’re more used to constructions like “Monks abjure marriage” rather than “Monks abjure marriages”, but it’s just as legitimate a construction (in my eye) for “career”, “education”, and “ambition”.

      • tuttabellamia says:

        NO, that is NOT the point I’m trying to make. If you don’t get it, then there is no hope. I give up.

      • Owl of Bellaire says:

        Ah, I misunderstood your question. My apologies.

        But I still don’t see the error, in either grammar or logic.

      • tuttabellamia says:

        No apology necessary. It would be an error in logic. The “ambition” clause is out of place, but if you, of all people, don’t see it, then I wonder if I’m the one who has misunderstood the gist of Lifer’s sentence.

    • tuttabellamia says:

      But Bart, you must agree that a ride in any horse and buggy would be a bumpy one indeed.

      That was my point.

      • Bart-1 says:

        yes, it is. I will check back in a few hours to see if Chris ever clarifies what he meant by that.

      • tuttabellamia says:

        Bart, you’re very subdued this morning.

      • objv says:

        Tutt, Your horse and buggy comment was funny. It made me smile.

      • tuttabellamia says:

        Thanks, OV. I’m glad somebody got it.

      • Bart-1 says:

        I will take your observation of being “subdued’ as a compliment. I was hoping for Chris to respond to my direct question to clarify, but alas, looks like it isn’t forthcoming. Pity, I could guess as to whom he thinks the ride will be bumpy(est?), but his inclusion of “we” throws that out the window.

      • bubbabobcat says:

        Little trollboys usually act “subdued” when caught redhanded and taken to the woodshed for their transgressions.

        Ain’t that right, bart-1/seriouscynic/usincrisis/Anse identity thief/fake DanMan???

      • Bart-1 says:

        trolling, trolling, trolling on the river. get help.

      • bubbabobcat says:

        Yes, bart-1/seriouscynic/usincrisis/Anse identity thief/fake DanMan of the multiple surreptitious ID’s and I’m the one trolling? And “needs help”?

        Okaaaaay trollbart. Who’s the “Keyboard Coward” again? And what happened to online “decorum”? Oh yeah, totally trashed by hypocritical trollbart who demands it of others, but NOT himself.

        Own it trollbart. Loud and proud. You deserve it.

        And you have no one to blame but your own stupid self.

        Oops, I mean “selves”.

      • bubbabobcat says:

        Well, are you going to deny you are a recidivist multiple sockpuppet troll, bart? Despite the RECENT incontrovertible evidence for all to see here?

        What simpering mealy mouthed excuse do you have now to pathetically claim your trolling was a “heroic” “act of virtue”, trollbart?

        Let’s hear it trollbart. I have a fresh bucket of popcorn to enjoy with the (unintentionally) absurd comedic entertainment from the “stylings” of consummate trollbart.

    • goplifer says:

      Daaaang ya’ll….

      Keeping “their” out of pure orneriness. Changing “back” to “backs.”

      • objv says:

        They’re, that fixed it. Thanks Chris!

      • Owl of Bellaire says:

        Chris, “orneriness” is so Texan a characteristic that they may run you out of Chicago….

        (And, lest you become like kabuzz, I have to point out that, with a correct apostrophe, it’s “y’all”.)

  20. tuttabellamia says:

    This blog entry reminds me of my dear friend from Ireland who also lived for many years in England and Canada. She loved city life and country life but hated the suburbs.

    When faced with the prospect of living in KINGWOOD, she said:

    “You may as well slit my wrists right now.”

  21. CaptSternn says:

    Lifer, you seem to be lumping several different groups together into one, groups that are rarely connected. Much like when Turtles and others lump you in with the tea party movement because you claim to be a republican.

    Beyond that, I think you are either imagining things or maybe getting your information from the Westboro church. Being a conservative and religious I have never encountered such things as you describe, not even while living close to the big city of Houston and having been very active in my church at one point.

    • GG says:

      Being conservative and religious doesn’t necessarily mean you are an evangelical whackadoodle. They are out there, believe me. If you want to watch something really scary go watch Jesus Camp, the Christian version of a Madrasa, brainwashing kids with nothing but extreme, militant religion.

      I like the idea of the Amish Option myself. They can go form their own little communities and leave the rest of us in peace.

      • tuttabellamia says:

        I agree. If you want to separate from the rest of the world, go off on your own and form your own community, that is your business.

        I think Lifer is overly worried about the potential of these communities to become Bundy ranches. Of course it can happen — it HAS happened — but these scenarios are few and far between.

        And if what Lifer says is true that the mainstream conservative community is turning away from this lifestyle, young people are becoming more involved in mainstream life, extreme conservatives are old and dying off, then what is the worry?

      • GG says:

        There are very large communities of Hasidic Jews in NY and the surrounding area who are living in neighborhoods who are unfortunately causing problems for others now. Instead of going about their business they have been verbally assaulting women riding bikes through their neighborhood and following women around, spitting on them and calling them whores because they aren’t dressed “modestly”, even little school girls. They also have their own buses that are segregated and are allowed to impose their own religious law to settle problems. I’ve never understood why no one addresses this but people freak out because Muslims live here. Every religion has their extreme radicals.

        This is why they need to go be out in the country somewhere in their own little walled city.

      • flypusher says:

        “And if what Lifer says is true that the mainstream conservative community is turning away from this lifestyle, young people are becoming more involved in mainstream life, extreme conservatives are old and dying off, then what is the worry?”

        The worry is that the dinosaurs who can’t bear that their influence is fading will throw up as many obstacles as they can in the time they have left. People’s exhibit A : all those same sex marriage bans.

      • flypusher says:

        ” Instead of going about their business they have been verbally assaulting women riding bikes through their neighborhood and following women around, spitting on them and calling them whores because they aren’t dressed “modestly”, even little school girls. ”

        Those people sound like horrible neighbors. I would love to hear a story about one of those spat-upon women turning around and decking one of those obnoxious spitters.

      • desperado says:

        “They can go form their own little communities.”

        They have. It’s called Texas.

      • tuttabellamia says:

        But Fly, with respect to same-sex marriage bans . . . how is it that such a small minority has so much power? If these people are so few, isn’t it simply a question of outvoting them?

        Or maybe there are more people against same-sex marriage that just extreme conservatives. The Black community usually votes overwhelmingly against same-sex marriage.

        Extreme conservatives are not the only ones to blame for bans against same-sex marriage. Apparently they have company.

      • CaptSternn says:

        “People’s exhibit A : all those same sex marriage bans.”

        You mean in liberal California?

      • flypusher says:

        “You mean in liberal California?”

        Typical Sternn. You leave out inconvenient facts like how the young people who are most likely to not get the vapors over gays also tend to have lower voter turnout. They do help the dinosaurs linger through their inaction.

      • flypusher says:

        “Or maybe there are more people against same-sex marriage that just extreme conservatives. The Black community usually votes overwhelmingly against same-sex marriage.

        Extreme conservatives are not the only ones to blame for bans against same-sex marriage. Apparently they have company.”

        Yes, but the Black community isn’t the origin of those laws/referendums. They may be happy to vote that way, but they don’t seem all that active in starting that process.

        Also the younger members are likely not so much in agreement.

      • tuttabellamia says:

        Ironically, the same Black voters who came out in droves to vote for Mr. Obama in California in 2008 also helped to defeat same-sex marriage in that state.

      • tuttabellamia says:

        But Fly, in the end, does it really matter who “started it” if they are able to round up enough votes from the rest of the population?

      • Owl of Bellaire says:

        No, it doesn’t matter. Constitutional rights can’t be abridged by popular vote, and the Fourteenth Amendment is pretty darned clear. As soon as the Supreme Court gets its hands on the matter, the issue will be resolved.

        Except, of course, for the conservatives’ truly ironic demand for “special rights” to continue abuse of homosexuals, in the form of so-called “religious exemptions”….

      • kabuzz61 says:

        GG please provide two links from a reputable source about A> Jesus Camp trains militants and B> Hasetic Jews spit on women in NYC and call them whores, etc.

        You can hate jews and Christians but you don’t need to make stuff up.

        Also, one of the callings of the Bible is being evangelical. Such intolerance from the left. It is amazing.

      • GG says:

        Buzzy, Jesus Camp is a documentary. A simple google search should suffice. The New York newspapers have widely covered the Hasidic communities problems and they even made headlines. Not that difficult. There have been several stories in the New Yorker from women who have fled the Hasidic community.

        Why would I hate Jews or Christians, you weird little man? Merely trying to start an argument for the sake of it? Talk about making things up…….

      • GG says:

        Question Buzzy, why would you give Hasidic Jews the benefit of the doubt but jump all over Muslims for the same behavior? Orthodox versions of any religions are inherently patriarchal and degrading to women. The orthodox Jews are no different in their views of women than Orthodox Muslims or Christians are.

      • kabuzz61 says:

        First GG, where have a spoken out against Muslim practices except maybe suicide bombing or beheadings or JIHAD.

        Orthodox Jews are not the same as Orthodox Muslims. You can tell that by seeing how the women go out in public.

        I heard about Jesus Camp and the documentary but nowhere did I find the word militant. That is the word you used. Unnecessary and a cheap shot which makes me think you hate Christians. Also, the things they learned at camp had no negative impact to anyone.

        I did check the NYC papers and blogs. Did not find 1 mention of spitting on women or calling them whores.

        There is no Orthodox Christian belief. Women can preach, teach, councel, pastor, evangilize all the live long day. They can also marry and have children. They can sit in any seat in the chruch or sanctuary. They can wear what they want. Again, you draw conclusions with no basis in reality.

      • GG says:

        Greek Orthodox, Russian Orthodox……Hasidic women have a dress code. Maybe not as strict as Muslims but it’s still a dress code. The people in that documentary are indeed militant in my opinion as well as others. The reviews call it “alarming” so I’m not alone.

        Many Christan sects have dress codes. Can’t cut their hair, long skirts, no pants, women are not permitted on the pulpit, etc. Maybe you don’t belong to them but, yes, they exist. Look at the Duggars. The girls are not allowed to go to college but are expected to get married and be babymakers like mama. They are homeschooled by mama, because, god forbid, they be exposed to any outside, “ungodly” influences and **gasp** science.

        Quit trying to start arguments because you need attention and dislike me personally. It’s extremely childish.

      • kabuzz61 says:

        GG, I’m not arguing. What you are talking about are small sects of ‘Christian’ groups. Like any other group, they will have their odd balls but at least now you are admitting only you think Jesus Camp is militant. And I hope you admit that the Hasidic’s in NYC do not spit or call women whores.

        David Koresh is a sect/cult. Although I strongly disagree with the way our government handled them, he was whacko. If I was being encouraged to join him, I first would have asked that since Koresh thinks he is Jesus Christ, why is he wearing glasses? That’s how I think.

      • tuttabellamia says:

        GG, why is the Modest Clothes website a hoot? People wear what they want. We’re not in high school anymore.

      • GG says:

        Do you have reading comprehension issues? If you read reviews of Jesus Camp you will find it reviewed as “alarming” so, no, I am not the only one who finds it miltant.

        I know I am talking about small sects however your said that there were no dress codes among Christians.

        And, no, I won’t take back what I wrote about Hasidic Jews spitting and calling women whores because they did including a schoolgirl. They also smacked a lesbian pastor on camera.

        Does this mean I “hate” Jews? No, it just means I think Hasidic Jews are as nuts as Evangelical Christians or militant Muslims.

        As I’ve said before, you seem to enjoy wallowing in faux outrage and victimhood.

      • Owl of Bellaire says:

        flypusher, the reactions from Hadisim in New York are news to me, though it certainly sounds from a cursory web search like they do happen but don’t get much press.

        I’d heard about such repulsive behavior (spitting on “immodest” women, etc.) in Israel from the ultra-Orthodox “Haredim” or “Charedim” in towns like Beit Shemesh (where an eight-year-old girl was spat upon and called a whore on her way to school by those religious nuts who think their own sense of “modesty” can and should be imposed on others).

        A European news report on the eight-year-old’s plight: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=waTGCXkcyTM
        Israeli news on the same event: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2uPs9UrR8Ro
        Associated Press report: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9U2M6vsMy48
        An Israeli woman who refused to ride in the back of the bus, as they demanded: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=k37d6fiQG8s
        Riots by Haredim at the Western Wall, over allowing women (!) to pray there: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pKjn-BvBgns
        Attacks on a woman, including throwing bricks through her car window: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=F8sWsSJfDzY

        Since the Haredim population doubles every 12 to 20 years, due to their religious demand for frequent procreation (an average of 5.9 per family!), could their strong stance in Israel be contributing to the callous disregard for the Palestinians?

        As I said, abuses in New York are less well documented, in a formal capacity (perhaps because, apparently, the Hasidim, particularly the Satmar sect, wield electoral power out of proportion to their numbers, through rabbi-commanded voting?)

        One article (not from the greatest of sources) about a recent New York controversy over a Haredi landlord: http://forward.com/articles/190402/judging-menachem-starks-jewish-life-not-just-his/ Notable quotes: “Ever run the New York Marathon? In Hasidic Williamsburg, you get jeered, even spit at.”

        A somewhat better source, about harassment of merchants in the community: http://www.nydailynews.com/new-york/brooklyn/modest-satmar-patrol-article-1.1270419

        Another source of dubious quality, but interesting in its apparent confidence over being understood by locals: http://www.reddit.com/r/videos/comments/1e0d14/oh_brooklyn_hasidim_harass_a_cyclist_in/ “Williamsburg had a pretty sweet protest not long ago. The jews [sic] were bitching that summertime cyclists were too scantily clad (women wearing shorts?! appalling!) so the sane people in the area organized a topless/clothing-optional bikeride through Williamsburg. Beautiful.”

      • GG says:

        Tutt, they can wear whatever they like but I can chuckle at them just as I’d laugh if I saw a guy wearing purple pants and a plaid jacket with white patent leather loafers.

      • GG says:

        Owl, this is a great article for insights into the Satmar sect.

      • Owl of Bellaire says:

        Yep. Religious wackos are always dangerous.

      • Bart-1 says:

        Being conservative, religious, and evangelical doesn’t make you a “Whackadoodle” either, but that doesn’t seem to e the generalization promoted by the “tolerant” left. Problem with the “Amish Option” is it isn’t scriptural, but hey, since when did that stop people anymore?

      • Owl of Bellaire says:

        Trying to forcefully impose your own religious beliefs on others is what makes one a “whackadoodle”.

        And basically un-American.

      • GG says:

        Evangelicals come across as pretty whacked to me Bart but I agree about the conservative and religious part of not necessarily meaning your whacked.

      • CaptSternn says:

        Trying to forcefully impose your own beliefs on others is what makes one a “whackadoodle”.

        Fixed it for you, and we know the left loves to impose their “morals” on everybody else. Has to do with that need to control people.

      • GG says:

        So what do you do it when religious whack jobs try and legislate their version of morality for everyone else?

        Just curious.

      • GG says:

        That should be “so what do you call it….”

      • Bart-1 says:

        Sternn, Obviously the double standard for Owl is: “When forcing your religious beliefs on others you are automatically a “whackadoodle”, forcing your nonreligious beliefs on others makes you rational”.

      • Owl of Bellaire says:

        I see it’s time for simplistic equivalencies.

        Religious nuts are trying to keep homosexuals from getting married, or having marriages recognized. Now I must ask: are liberals trying to force any of those religious nuts to engage in homosexual marriages? Well, no.

        Religious nuts are trying to impose their own religious beliefs on women to prevent them from getting abortions. Now I must ask: are liberals trying to force any of those religious nuts to get abortions against their wills? Well, no.

        You guys are so lacking of a logical leg to stand on that one might well mistake you for garden slugs.

      • Houston-stay-at-Homer says:

        As typical, Stern (and now Bart) are equating things that are not equatable.

        Let’s see if we can walk through this to figure out how one gets to this position.

        My religious beliefs lead me to believe being gay is an abomination and thus I do not support recognition of gay marriage. This directly impacts people who want to get gay married. My religious beliefs are being forced upon them.

        My non-religious beliefs suggest that it is A-OK to have recognition of gay marriage. This does not impact people who do not want to get gay married. My non-religious beliefs are not being forced upon them.

        So, Stern and Bart…explain to us how things are being forced upon you. Do you think folks are going to make you get gay married?

      • texan5142 says:

        And the republicans in Texas are crazy zealots.
        http://m.huffpost.com/us/entry/5655389

      • CaptSternn says:

        “So, Stern and Bart…explain to us how things are being forced upon you.”

        Health insurance being required, and being required to pay for abortificants and abortions. Prohibition. Involuntary servitude. Restricting use of private land because of a bug or a mouse when it isn’t being used for commerce, much less interstate or international commerce.

        Owl, abortion can be discussed without religion. Even atheists have the rights to life, liberty and property. You know your arguent is weak, so you try to make it about religion, as if the constitution is a religious document.

      • Owl of Bellaire says:

        Sternn, you’re continuing your garden-slug imitation.

        It is an indisputable fact that everyone will need health care at some point. Requiring people to have health insurance is therefore not a philosophical orientation, but an acceptance of reality. Of course, I understand how that might be difficult for you.

        No-one is being required to pay for abortifacients or abortions. Some might be paying for insurance which covers such products, but that’s not the same thing, no matter how much the gibbering conservative hordes would like to stretch the bounds of reason and sense.

        You might have a point about “prohibition”, by which I presume you mean the criminalization of drugs. Of course, Democrats are far more likely to support legalization than Republicans, so again you’ve fallen flat on your face while leaving a slime-trail of molluscan mucus.

        And then you want to complain about endangered-species protections. Of course, the EPA was established by a Republican president — Nixon, who was no pinko. So it sounds rather like you’re hurling the kitchen sink because of your strenuous whining about not being able to do everything you want. Suck it up; personal limitations are part of living in a cooperative society.

      • kabuzz61 says:

        Homer, what if you are a Methodist and your pastor tells you homsexuality is no longer a sin and they will perform same sex marraige so the parishioner votes his or her religious belief FOR homosexual marriage. It that religious driven vote bad also?

      • Owl of Bellaire says:

        Who is harmed by that vote, Kabuzz? Whose behavior is unreasonably restricted?

        Again, you’re making false equivalencies.

      • CaptSternn says:

        “Trying to forcefully impose your own … beliefs on others is what makes one a “whackadoodle”. And basically un-American”

        “Suck it up; personal limitations are part of living in a cooperative society.”

        You make it too easy, bird.

      • Owl of Bellaire says:

        Sternn, you’re being an idiot again.

        Please describe any society which places no limitations upon its members.

        And please justify your support for such a place, where murder and theft and cheating would all be legal.

        You like to claim you’re not an anarchist. Then you advocate ridiculous ideas like that — if not intentionally, then by the stupidity which leads you to venerate sloppy ideals without accepting real-world complications.

        My point is that laws should be *rational*, and support *rational* interests. An evangelical’s interest in keeping same-sex couples from getting married is not rational; it serves no useful purpose other than coddling the evangelical’s delusions. But protection for endangered species serves a scientifically documented purpose in preserving ecosystems to renew themselves and in preserving genetic and biological data for future generations.

        Grow up and appreciate complexity.

      • CaptSternn says:

        I was just pointing out your inconsistency, or as some would call it, hypocrisy. And no, a bug is not engaging in interstate or international commerce, or commerce with the Indian Tribes.

      • Owl of Bellaire says:

        Sternn, ecosystems cross state lines, and bugs seldom respect legal property lines.

        That these thoughts haven’t occurred to you on your own is evidence of your truly hapless condition.

    • Owl of Bellaire says:

      Sternn, you sweet Nazi, I realize over half the things you say are lies, anyway, but when have Turtles and others described Chris as a Tea Party Republican?

      Oh, and Sternn, how old is the universe, in your opinion?

      • CaptSternn says:

        Every time somebody says “GOTP” or “GOP/TP”, bird.

      • Owl of Bellaire says:

        And just how often does that happen? Hardly ever.

        In any case, O Demander of Squirrely, Convenient, and Self-Serving Nuance, how do you know such a speaker isn’t referring to the activists who set the national agenda and represent the party’s steadily rightward-sliding face, rather than other Republican individuals like Chris?

        Oh, right. You believe what you want to, and offer whatever lies you feel you need to support it. That’s why you get compared to Goebbels.

      • CaptSternn says:

        “And just how often does that happen? Hardly ever.”

        You must not read comments made by Turtlesrun.

      • Owl of Bellaire says:

        But you said “Turtles and others”, Oh Great Deceiver. Of course, taking one example and claiming it’s general and representative is a primary technique for the Big Lie.

        Oh, and how old is the universe, in your opinion? It’s a simple question. But perhaps you’re even simpler.

      • CaptSternn says:

        Yes others say the same thing. This is not the only place in the world to read or post comments, bird.

        As for your question about the age of the universe I think it is estimated to be about 13.5 billion years. Simple enough?

      • Owl of Bellaire says:

        Thank you for your rare gift of a straight answer without equivocation.

      • Owl of Bellaire says:

        …although, come to think of it, you *did* say “I think it is estimated…” (ah, the passive voice!), rather than “I think that it is…”, which could be viewed as equivocation.

      • tuttabellamia says:

        Owl, maybe not equivocation but an acknowledgment that he is not a physicist.

        A physicist would be in more of a position to say “I think the universe is about 13.5 billion years old.”

        Cap would be in a position to say only that “I think the universe is estimated [by physicists] to be 13.5 billion years old.”

      • Owl of Bellaire says:

        But, Tutt, that leaves entirely open and unstated the answer to whether Sternn *believes* the physicists.

        A young-Earth creationist would be just as correct, with no danger of engaging in falsehoods, in making such a statement, and yet not reveal her own steadfast stance in a 6,000-year-old planet and universe.

        I specifically asked for *Sternn’s* opinion, not for his knowledge of physicists’ beliefs.

      • CaptSternn says:

        Exactly, Tutt. Owl will probably lose some feathers when the bird realizes I also support the theory of evolution. That’s some pretty intelligent design there, nature isn’t static nor is it supposed to be.

      • Owl of Bellaire says:

        Anyone who actually examines the vagaries and juryrigs of human genetics and human anatomy clearly understands that, if someone claims “intelligent design” is at work, both the claimer and her or his God are thus demonstrated to be Incompetent Idiots.

      • Turtles Run says:

        Owl wrote: but when have Turtles and others described Chris as a Tea Party Republican?

        Easy answer. Never. GOPlifer is a conservative Republican. Those in the GOTP are far right radicals that week to impose their version of facism upon America. They are easily identified by their inability to distinguish fact from fiction. The are generally found at tea party rallies or rallying around Ted “PT Barnum” Cruz.

      • tuttabellamia says:

        Owl, perhaps the way to phrase the question, then, is: “Do you believe that the universe is 13.5 billion years old as estimated by physicists?”

      • tuttabellamia says:

        Owl: Cap’s noncommittal way of expressing the age of the universe could also be seen as similar to that of a journalist — objective and impartial.

        A journalist would say: “Physicists believe the age of the universe to be 13.5 billion years.”

      • Bart-1 says:

        Ha! Turtles claimed, “GOPlifer is a conservative Republican.” I would challenge Turtles to list more Socially and Fiscally conservative that GOPlifer holds than I could list Liberal positions. care to accept the challenge Turtles?

      • Houston-stay-at-Homer says:

        As much as it pains me…I’m going to lean a bit towards Stern in at least one line of this thinking.

        In terms of voting in general elections, there is no real difference between the GOP and the TP, so when looking for who votes for who, the GOP/TP is a single entity in a general election.

        In fact, the data suggests the TP are the most bought and owned part of the GOP. The GOP recognizes that the TP can cause bad things to happen in the primaries (and a few times in the general election), but the GOP knows that it can count on the TP votes come general election time.

        While Stern and Buzz like to portray the TP as “feared by the GOP establishment”, the GOP knows it can count on their votes with no fear of them voting for Democrats.

        Cranky social conservatives are a highly energetic and motivated voting block, and the GOP owns the TP votes.

      • Owl of Bellaire says:

        Tutt — But Sternn is not a journalist; he is a participant in an ongoing online debate. As such, it’s all about *his* opinions, not his dispassionate reportage of others’ views while suppressing his own.

      • Bart-1 says:

        Homer I would think Roberts, Cochran, Cantor, etc, etc., in just the past couple months would beg to differ. That propaganda spewing, RWNJ CNN is spreading lies about how the Tea Party has been challenging the establishment GOP. You need to correct them fast! http://www.cnn.com/2014/07/01/politics/midterm-elections-halftime/

      • CaptSternn says:

        I would say you are about 95% correct on that, HT. The GOP can count on the vast majority of the tea party movement’s vote, but some or many of us have voted for a third party and might do so in the future.

        Owl, fine, if you want to pick at nits, it is my opinion that the scientists are correct and the age of the universe is somewhere between 13.5 billion and 14 billion years old. It isn’t something I keep up with on a daily basis so I am not sure exactly where it stands at this point. Are you a happy bird now?

      • Owl of Bellaire says:

        I am. It is one of the vanishingly few times that you have made me so.

      • Houston-stay-at-Homer says:

        Ah…Bart…always a joy for you to bring your “insight” to the group, but alas, the reading comprehension issues rear their ugly rears over and over.

        As discussed above, the TP can cause consternation in the primaries, but past that stage, the TP is owned by the GOP. TP members have incredibly conservative social views, so the GOP knows it can count on their votes as long as the heathen liberal democrats are on the other side.

        As one of my (way too many) GOP buddies stated, “They (the TP) are an idiotic pain in the ass, but we can count on them to always vote against Democrats”.

      • Turtles Run says:

        Cappy wrote: I would say you are about 95% correct on that,

        Are you claiming that 95% of tea party supporters are reliable Republican voters? If you are that is really incredible. That is a higher rate than the African American support for Democrats or Mormons for Romney.

        Surely, you jest. I thought the tp came from all backgrounds.

      • CaptSternn says:

        Turtles, we are working to bring the GOP back to the right of center, and we are not going to vote for democrats. FYI, Obama got 96% of the black vote.

      • Bart-1 says:

        No, Homer, they don’t force anyone to become homosexually married. Do they try to force all businesses to provide all 16 abortifcaient methods of birth control? Fund the largest abortion provider in the country with tax dollars? Purchase health insurance? Yes. Congratulations. Good Job. Understandable how Chris believes the “Optimists are winning”. Our society is obviously much better off for it. The anti-religious left has been successful in secularizing our culture. Furthermore, I believe “they” are far from done. Makes you understand the desire of the Amish/Mennonites sometimes doesn’t it?

      • Turtles Run says:

        Cappy – Right of Center??? Then why do all the tp supporters and the politicians that claim to represent the tp movement a bunch of far right wing ideologues….scratch that imbeciles. I do not see these people tacking left anytime soon to make the GOP center right.

        Of course we will give the usual Democrat-lite rant but your words just do not match reality.

        The tp for all their claims of not supporting the “establishment” are the first ones to line up behind them in the general elections. You guys are neo-cons to the bone. Democrats dream of have such a loyal constituency as the tea party “independents.”

      • CaptSternn says:

        Gotta laugh when somebody tries to dismiss the truth when they know it is coming anyway. Yes, Turtles, the GOP has moved to the left of center, DNC Lite. Only a very far left extremist would think otherwise.

        The GOP establishment are the neo-cons, former liberals espousing coservative views, but still quite liberal on most views and definately to the left when it comes to their actions. I don’t ever remember being a liberal. I was to the right of Reagan before I was old enough to vote. He talked the talk, but often he didn’t walk the walk.

        The one area that I actually agree with neo-cons on is foriegn policy. Reagan had it pretty much right, Bush41 was good but made a mistake with Iraq, but that is hindsight (or with me, a bad feeling about it at the time). Bush43 had a good and strong foriegn policy. Their domestic policies are where I generally disagree, though Bush43 was on the right track with social security at one point.

        I will give more credit to republicans between 1995 and 2001, they took on Clinton and forced a near balanced budget and welfare reform. They even passed the line-item veto for the president, but that was ruled unconstitutional.

      • Bart-1 says:

        Turtles, I’m going to assume you are pulling a Chris and just ignoring my challenge. Your prerogative. Something to read next time you claim Chris is a “Conservative Republican’. Take special note of number 5. http://townhall.com/columnists/johnhawkins/2007/04/27/10_differences_between_conservatives_and_liberals/page/full

      • bubbabobcat says:

        Well, bart-1/seriouscynic/usincrisis/Anse identity thief/fake DanMan, you are a fiiiiiine example of a “decent” and “righteous” “good Christian”.

        What was that 9th Commandment again trollbart? You’re familiar with it, aren’t you trollbart? Something about a witness being false…

      • Bart-1 says:

        BOOOORRRRIIINNNGGG

      • bubbabobcat says:

        But NOT factually incorrect, eh trollbart?

      • bubbabobcat says:

        Bart-1 says:
        August 6, 2014 at 2:54 pm

        “Being conservative, religious, and evangelical doesn’t make you a ‘Whackadoodle’ either.”

        Um how about a “conservative, religious, and evangelical” multiple sockpuppet, trollbart?

        I think that changes the whooooole equation/assessment, doesn’t it bart-1/seriouscynic/usincrisis/Anse identity thief/fake DanMan????

      • Turtles Run says:

        bart-1/seriouscynic/usincrisis/Anse identity thief/fake DanMan wrote: I would challenge Turtles to list more Socially and Fiscally conservative that GOPlifer holds than I could list Liberal positions. care to accept the challenge Turtles?

        Challenge accepted.

        GOPlifer uses factual data and evidence to make pragmatic and realistic decisions concerning relevent issues facing our nation and planet.

        You are a farking troll.

        Challenge won

      • kabuzz61 says:

        Tracey, this is another area where liberals especially Silly Bird, Homer and Turtles get it wrong. No matter how many times the TEA Party is explained to them, they dig in to their democrat talking points as fact. A pitiful sight indeed.

        Now Homer’s standard is if you disagree with him, you are an idiot. Pretty brazen. Or is not an idiot, you are a racist. That is how devolved Homer has become.

      • Houston-stay-at-Homer says:

        OK…buzz…if you are going to double down on your comment that 72% of Black women have children out of wedlock, then yes, you are an idiot and/or a racist.

        You now know that your statement is incorrect, and you are doubling down on it.

        Seriously?

  22. kabuzz61 says:

    Chris, I was raised in the Northeast, Philidelphia. I started my elementary education in the late fifties. The dominate religion in the Northeast is catholicism. Was then is now. There are pockets of bible believing churches but they are far outnumbered. Catholics were so dominate, all school lunch programs offered only fish on Friday’s.

    In my fully integrated education in the fifties and sixties, we were taught science and evolution. No one tried to stop it.

    Most fundementalist’s become firm believers after their thirties. After wild oats have been sown. When most people start pondering life and the whole picture.

    I know it is your self appointed job to deminish conservatism and those of faith, but you have to be a conservative and a person of faith to see just how off the mark you are. During my life as a believer, we are taught to just so seeds, be a good witness/example. The harvest comes further down the road and I probably won’t see it and sometimes it doesn’t happen at all, I expect. So your memo of us demanding more than tolerance is off the mark also.

    If you ever in your life shared a very personal encounter with God, you would understand. And I speak from a point of being a firm non believer for the first 25 years of my life and I also was very sure I didn’t want to get married and have kids. But what happens during our avowed plans is simply life. My request would be to ask you to ease up on people of faith. Almost all are just toiling about our everyday lives like anyone else. There are a few vocal evangelical’s that go rogue, but you have your Pelosi’s and jackson’s and Sharpton’s. It evens out. It doesn’t matter what we think or want. God loves us. And for believers, we know God is no respecter of person’s. Total equality.

    • CaptSternn says:

      Very well said, Kabuzz.

      • objv says:

        Amen to that. 🙂

      • Bart-1 says:

        seek help

      • bubbabobcat says:

        I’m glad you acknowledge that all your buddies buzzy, cappy, and OV all have major issues, trollbart.

        However, that has much less legitimacy coming from a consummate multiple sockpuppet troll who considers cowardly anonymous and surreptitious identity hijacking a “virtue” and “heroic”.

    • goplifer says:

      Like I said, some people try to portray this as a question of tolerance, but that is misleading…

      • flypusher says:

        ‘Fess up Chris, you’re paying Sternn and Buzzy to prove your points.

      • Bart-1 says:

        so, I’m guessing you are never going to clarify who “we” is and why it will be a “bumpy road” huh? *sigh*

      • bubbabobcat says:

        Bart-1 whines incessantly:
        August 6, 2014 at 6:14 pm

        “so [sic], I’m guessing you are never going to clarify who ‘we’ is [sic] and why it will be a ‘bumpy road’ huh? *sigh*”

        That’s pretty nervy and demanding coming from a consummate sockpuppet troll who won’t ever admit he is (and will always be) a troll.

        Bart, Chris is not responsible for your ignorance or cluelessness. Learn to use your brain for a change and figure it out for yourself instead persistently pretending to be someone else.

        So bart, what “virtuous” inclination “forced” you to post as Anse and even to steal your buddy Dan’s identity and pretend to post as both of them? Just this past week?

        With “friends” like bart…

    • Owl of Bellaire says:

      kabuzz, is your first paragraph really meant to imply that Catholics do not attend “bible [sic] believing churches”? From what text, then, do Catholics derive their beliefs?

      And, please, make life easier on whatever poor sod has to edit your e-books: learn to use apostrophes correctly.

      • kabuzz61 says:

        The Catholics studay catichism(?) Only the priest can read the gospel. Laymen can read the old testament and the letters of the new. They do believe. I first converted to the Catholic faith due to an oath I made with the priest that married us that our children would be raised Catholic, basically batized in the Catholic faith. During my wife and my faith journey, we ‘outgrew’ the Catholic faith. To this day I remain friendly to the priests I’ve come to know over the years as they each had a part of my growth. There is no doubt that the Catholic’s have Jesus Christ at the center of their profession of faith.

        As far as the editing, they get paid good money to edit my books so why make it easier on them. 🙂 In actuality, when you write you are involved in the process of the story and you can break up that creative flow by concerning yourself with grammatical tenses, spelling and punctuation. Which is the reason they call the first write through the 1st draft. Then the second and hopefully no third. It is not pleasant reading your own book three or four times in a row.

        A fun fact: Most copywriters/editors read the book by paragraph from back to front so they don’t get involved in the story.

      • Owl of Bellaire says:

        The Catholics I know would be surprised, amused, and probably angered by your ridiculous stereotypes, kabuzz. Perhaps, as with so many of your social views and scientific ideas, they’re still mired in the 1950s and 1960s. Hint: Vatican II happened.

        Catholics most certainly can read the Gospels — unless you’re referring to reading aloud, as part of a Mass, rather than reading for yourself. But that would have little or nothing to do with a church being “Bible-based”.

        So, kabuzz, I still have to ask what you meant when you wrote, “There are pockets of bible believing churches but they are far outnumbered.” If Catholicism is dominant in the North-east, but is also a “Bible-believing church”, then what in the world were you referring to?

      • kabuzz61 says:

        You learn by reading, instruction and doing. In the Catholic Church you can study (mostly done by yourself) listen to the readings and homily and maybe join the liturgy committee.

        The biblican principles are intact in their mass. All Catholic churches cover the same readings the world over on any given day. That is in line with “When two or more of my followers gather together in My name, it shall be done for them.” The progession of faith they use is stellar. A wonderful acknowledgment of faith. Most Catholics put their faith in the priest and they derive much of their explanations of the Bible from the priest.

        It’s like Kathy Maddigan says: “I’m Catholic. We don’t read the bible. We read the bulletin.”

        How many masses have you attended?

      • Houston-stay-at-Homer says:

        In answer to the last question…hundreds

      • tuttabellamia says:

        HT, can’t you ever post a comment without mentioning a numerical figure? 🙂

      • Crogged says:

        Feet washing isn’t much followed by non-Catholic Christians in the South, but crucifixion is still done in a more modern form.

      • Owl of Bellaire says:

        Kabuzz, in an earlier career I taught for four years at a Catholic school. I’ve been to Mass, both in a school and church setting. I also continue to have Catholic friends.

        So, if I understand you correctly, you are claiming, though unwilling to come right out and say it, that Catholics are NOT “Bible-believing” Christians, since (supposedly, in the general stereotype you present), “Most Catholics put their faith in the priest and they derive much of their explanations of the Bible from the priest.”

        Have I summarized your statement properly, or would you care to modify it?

      • kabuzz61 says:

        You are a dense silly bird. Catholic’s believe in the bible. But more importantly they believe in Jesus Christ.

      • Owl of Bellaire says:

        Well, kabuzz, then we’re right back at the beginning again.

        So, I have to ask again, what did you mean when you wrote, “The dominate [sic] religion in the Northeast is catholicism…. There are pockets of bible [sic] believing churches but they are far outnumbered.”? If Catholicism is, as you’ve now clearly stated, a “Bible-believing church”, then what in the world were you referring to?

        You have yet to explain what you actually meant. The obvious implication would be that you are an anti-Catholic bigot; but I’m hoping you will be able to dispel that charge by laying out the actual intent of your post.

      • Kabuzz, explaining faith to those with no sense of the numinous, e.g. Owl, is akin to explaining blue to the congenitally blind. You’d be better off conversing with your dog; it would be equally productive, and at least your pup will appreciate the company.

      • dowripple says:

        Is there a vitamin one can take to increase sensitivity to the numinous? Crusaders who were starving often interacted with angels/saints, maybe “fasting” helps.

      • Owl of Bellaire says:

        Oh, I’ve encountered many a *numen*, through nature or art or architecture. I just happen to believe it’s neurochemistry rather than the blundering efforts of some incompetent, ridiculously shy God.

        But it’s awfully amusing how intent people are on protecting kabuzz from himself. HE is the one who pretty clearly painted himself into an anti-Papist corner, and now you’re piling onto me just for pointing out his ugliness. It figures.

      • kabuzz61 says:

        Tracey, I know. You are correct. I usually just ignore the smug writings of the silly bird but I wrongly thought she was interested but as silly bird does, keeps moving the goal posts while thinking an intellectual point is being reached when nothing really happened except the wasting of time and bandwidth.

        Homer is a close second.

      • Owl of Bellaire says:

        So we can take it as established that kabuzz is an anti-Catholic bigot.

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