left biblioblography: February 2006

Sunday, February 26, 2006


This is perhaps the most mind-bending of the xtians’ gymnastics, so let’s explore this concept.

First off, it’s obviously a derivation of the Hindi Trimurti– Shiva, Vishnu, and Brahma – sugar coated and softened (read: pre-masticated) for the general populace.

And before the shout-down begins, history has documented evidence that there were indeed trade routes from Sumer to India, dating back as far as 3000 BCE (read here). Not to mention the Buddhist monks sent by Asoka to spread the word, as it were: his Edicts speak of friendly relations with Ptolemy, king of Egypt. It is a small step to infer syncretism at this juncture (the OT has a great many of these borrowed parallelisms).

So far, so good. To my limited knowledge (and I could be wrong), there’s no dispute in Trimurti – Brahman is top dog, gangsta with a capital G, etc, etc, et al.

It of course gets squirrelly when? Yep, you guessed it. When the xtians get their hands on it.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Trinity- “Regarding Matthew 28:19, it is important to note here that there is not a single instance in the Bible itself of anyone being baptized using the formula "In the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit." In every Biblical case of baptism, Christian converts were baptized "in the name of Jesus", "in the name of the Lord", "in the name of the Lord Jesus", etc. (see Acts 2:38, 8:16, 10:48, 19:5). The biblical apostles interpreted Jesus’ command in Matthew 28:19 to mean baptizing in the name of Jesus. The Trinitarian formula for baptism was not widely used in Christendom until the fourth century.”

Now, this is not to say that the concept of the Trinity was non-existent prior. Rather, it was formalized (coined).

I’m not going to take any cheap shots at the Nicene Creed. Standardization and structure is necessary in all human endeavors, religious or otherwise. Not to mention the ongoing conflicts between Docetism, adoptionism, etc. Too many cooks in the kitchen springs to mind.

I have good friend, a BAX no less, who told me once that he and colleague sat down and worked very hard to extract the Trinitarian concept from scripture. More or less, the verdict was: “its there, but it’s tough to prove.” See the above listing at Wikipedia for a partial list of scriptural references.

Now that we’ve established some history, let’s get to the meat: I refer, of course, to the Johannine Comma.

This is a perfect example of the bible’s inherent abusability quotient (IAQ).

In the 16th CE, Erasmus was translating the bible from Greek to Latin, when officials asked him why he hadn’t included the notorious Comma (short clause). To which he responded (para), that he hadn’t found it. Now, there’s debate as to how he compiled the Textus Receptus (by his own admission, “Erasmus said the resulting work was "thrown headlong rather than edited", ("prÅ“cipitatum fuit verius quam editum").[8] He fixed many but not all of these mistakes in the second edition, published in 1519.[6]” , but  “Newton (author’s note: yes, the same)  observed, "In all the vehement universal and lasting controversy about the Trinity in Jerome's time and both before and long enough after it, this text of the 'three in heaven' was never once thought of. It is now in everybody’s mouth and accounted the main text for the business and would assuredly have been so too with them, had it been in their books."[9] Newton believed that the Comma was introduced, intentionally or by accident, into a Latin text during the fourth or fifth century, a time when he believed the Church to be rife with corruption.[10]”  [from the Comma hyperlink].

It did indeed get included on the 3rd copy, BTW (TR).

Not to mention Clement’s (200) lack of mention of the same (or many other pre-Nicene patrists).

So there we have it, dear readers. It’s not explicitly spelled out: it’s nothing more than inferred by some less- than-specific scripture from the book of fables.

In short, it’s an afterthought. Post ex facto.

Can you say ‘Interpolation’, boys and girls?


Friday, February 24, 2006


Wow. Was looking up some biblical references for flatulence in the bible (was going for the lowbrow shot this time), came across this intensely hysterical website:


E. Dwayne Looper should have his/her last name changed to ‘Loopy’. Credentials are as follows: ‘E. Dwayne Looper is widely considered to be the leading Christian demonologist in Canada. Residing in the town of Moosejaw, Saskatchewan, Brother Looper leads a dynamic ministry of deliverance in the frosty climes of the frozen north. Educated at Christchurch University, Cambridge, The Reverend Looper earned his Doctor of Divinity degree in 1982.)’
Does he perform at children’s birthday parties too? What a clown. Get a bleeding hobby, will ya, Rev?

“There are many ways in which one can maintain an optimum, effective witness for Christ Jesus. Saying no, when invited to "play" with the Ouija board while at work; refusing to kill another person, even if they are an abortionist; placing Bible tracts in public places, such as Laundromats, malls, restrooms, and government offices.”

Can you say ‘whacko’, boys & girls? Someone please, PLEASE tell me this cat’s on medication. He must be: I’m only going to quote the wilder parts of this scatological sermon, because, well, it’s just TOO funny.

“We take in God through our mouths, and expel the Serpent through our bowels. You see, food is a type of Christ, while bodily waste, or fecal matter, is a type of Satan. This is why we bless our food, and flush our waste down into the underworld. And just as we spend time in properly preparing our food, that we may receive God's blessing through it, so too must we prepare our colons to be properly flushed of the feces Satan would have become impacted, robbing us of our colon's ability to absorb important vitamin and nutrients and hence, the natural vitality, clean mind, and fresh skin we need to bring Christ to others: A constipated Christian simply cannot be an effective witness for Christ!”

I looked all over for some ad declaring that the reader could get ‘Colonal Irrigation’. Seriously! I mean, he dispenses advice like a deranged Dear Abbey (pun intended), ya think he might actually direct someone SOMEWHERE for a Sacred Suppository. That comes later.
“Flatulence is yet another gastrointestinal weapon Satan uses to damage the witness of the effective Christian.”

He who farts in church, sits in pew? (wild laughter).

“I remember when I was a young minister, Satan would often attack me with great bouts of flatulence as I was about to mount the podium to deliver God's inspired word.”

Ummm…try laying off the red-hot Chili, Rev.

“The snickering in the congregation often grew to such raucous heights as to drown out the Word. The attacks would continue as I attempted to stand at the door of the sanctuary after service to bid farewell to the parishioners. And as I was about to shake a hand, or hug a child, a great flatus would erupt and spew forth the noxious odor residing in my bowels.”

So it’s the DEVIL’S fault, you don’t have enough sense to lay off the bean & cheese burritos at whatever passes for 7-11 in Canada?

“And sweet Jesus, the odor: It carried with it the sulfurous emissions of Hell itself.”

Wonder what his dating life was like?

“That sulfuric odor emanating from deep within me was really my first clue that its origins were not simply from cabbage, but rather from Hell. It was then that I undertook to study my bowels and to control my eating habits in such a way as not to allow Satan to use the rotting foods within me to contaminate the work Christ was trying to do in, and through, me.”

Gee, that doesn’t sound delusional to me in the least. Would be a great headline in the Enquirer.

“The Fall is dramatized in the human digestive process.”

So now we’re a microcosm of the Divine Plan, via our digestive juices?

“We take in the good food of the Garden with our mouths, but then our evil physical bodies of lust turn it into putrid stool, rather than the Shekinah glory which followed the Children of Israel in the Wilderness. I therefore urge you in this final year before the millennium to take control of your colon even as Christ has taken control of your spirit.”

Praise the Lord, pass the Ammo! Oh, & that’s how dated this article is. I wonder how he and his followers rose to heaven? Bourne by the sweet smell of satiny billows of aromatic, blessed broken wind.

“The best way to do this is with my patented Looper Gospeltories, which are small waxy vessels containing the purest olive oil the Holy Land can offer. As you kneel in a semi-squat position in the privacy of your prayer closet, you simply insert a Looper Gospeltory into the gritty recess of your backside. Once inside, the gentle olive oil loosens, cleanses, and frees your colon of the layers of encrusted demonic residue. And best of all, Looper Gospeltories make great gifts, for what better says "I love you" than the gift of a clean colon? The Looper Gospeltories come twelve to a box for only $8.95. Please feel free to order by e-mail through this website.”

Because a clean colon is a Christian colon! Lube ‘em up baby, we’re going to Heaven! I mean, the IMAGERY this nonsense invokes, well, hey, it’s WAY better than what I was GOING to post.

I’d email him, and tell him to shove it where the sun don’t shine, but he’s already done that.

Read. Enjoy. I really do wish I’d made this up. But it’s apparently for real. Knock yourself out, troops.


Thursday, February 23, 2006


Here is an old saw.
You’ve used it many times, for many purposes. It has helped you build your temples. It has helped you build the gallows. It has helped you build bridges as well. You’ve used it as a measuring stick, a musical instrument, an instrument of torture, a mirror to look in (when it’s patina was still shiny), a wedge to drive between brothers.
It is a tool. It is a tool that’s cut down the trees to make books, many, many books about the truth, as you see it. It is a tool that has been at your side since the very beginning: you know it on sight; your grip on it is a familiar one. Blindfolded, you’d know the heft, the feel of it from any other. Your heart sang as its teeth ripped the bark, or the flesh, the simple one-two beat of the chord its steely length ululates.

But it has grown worn with use. Its teeth are dull, rust pits the metal hide: too much liquid has spattered across the glossy sheen, and its days are numbered to be fewer with use.

It is time to find a new tool, a less damaging one.

But it’s a good saw, you say. It’s helped me build; it’s helped me destroy. It is like a brother to me. I know the sound of its teeth, the song of its metal heart, the feel of its grip. I don’t want to discard it. I sleep with it at night.

No, it’s old. It must be discarded. Thrown away. Sentimentality and nostalgia are for people, not for tools, not for equipment, not for abstract simile, not for philosophy, not for debate, not for religion. If it is not people, and it is worn to the very nub, throw it away.

Truth is in the beating heart, the flowing pulse, in life.

Truth is not a tool.


Wednesday, February 22, 2006


I am feeling a bit on the lazy side this week. But rather than pull some of the solipsistic maneuvers of some bloggers (you can guess what I mean: “Oh, I don’t really feel like saying anything of note, but I HAVE to write something, so, I trimmed my toenails, it’s a gloomy day, I picked my nose…” – you get the idea.)
I pulled this old (and I mean old) ditty I put together well over a decade ago, a short story I wrote but never bothered trying to get published (why? Couldn’t tell ya). Dusting it off, I had to retouch it a bit (I used Ashtoreth as the central character – a FEMALE Babylonian deity, no less, and I had to correct the spelling of Malbolge), but outside of a few minor quick brushes, I present it in its entirety:


The union steward of Hell's Local 666 handed a list of grievances to Asmodai, who received it with a withering glare and a vicious scowl designed to frighten naughty children and make drunkards swear off drink. He'd used it often enough throughout history, and met with wonderful results. That same scowl had caused Faust to deliver his famous monologue to cover his dread (rumors not withstanding, the Big Boss never made personal appearances up above, he used to send Asmodai, who did just fine, till recently), had forced an infamous dictator to kill himself, and frightened a President into resigning.
The steward crossed his fatty arms over his voluminous paunch, tipped his hard hat up with a gnarled thumb, and chomped on his stogie, completely unintimidated by the horned, fanged, bulbous, rotting, sulphurous, leprous, gangrenous Asmodai (and that was just his eyes: you should've seen the REST of him!). With a malodorous, whistling, hideous sigh, The Demon Duke of the Seventh Level of Hell, The Bubbling Magnificence of the Inferno, the, oh hell, the holder of far too many titles to list here, read the demands.
In a dim corner of his mind (one of them, anyhow), Asmodai reviewed the catalogue of events that had brought him to this downswing in his otherwise colorful career.
In the old days, (the GOOD old days, he amended) there was hellfire and brimstone, the cries and screams of the damned, the Byzantine elegance of Hell. He and his cronies spent many a wonderful century in mass torture, devising new and wonderful methods of tormenting the sinners who had descended to their playgrounds. Ah yes, and the great Lucifer spreading his wings over his kingdom gloating in silent glee over his lieutenants, slouched in his many-colored, multi-faceted, ever-flowing throne. In those days, he and his peers had gone to the surface in vast numbers, recruiting. They possessed nuns, desecrated holy places, whispered obscene things in every ear, bent hearts and spirits in the right direction so as to swell the populace of Hades.
The Twentieth Century changed all that.
Before its advent, the world had few people. But, what with the progress of technology, the advancement of science and medicine, fewer people died. No longer did women die in childbirth, and few children were stillborn. Men learned to fight wars with fewer casualties. Just before the Twenty-First Century, Man fought to terrify rather than kill the enemy, and to fight a civilized war. Soon, there would be an end to war in itself (which terrified some of the hierarchy of Hell: they very well could be laid off, an historical precedent unheard of in the Nether Regions). It seemed a boon at first: with the advent of humanism and occultism, the As-Long-As-It-Doesn't-Hurt-Anyone Philosophy, the sins of the multitude blossomed and grew as morals became obsolete.
Then, the unthinkable happened.
Hell ran out of room.
True, any Demon of rank above the Fourth Level (and there were a LOT of those) could absorb a set amount of souls into their essence, but it took some time to digest them, and meanwhile their peculiar metabolisms required a great deal of rest. Sloth and gluttony were sins every Fallen Angel held dear to their hearts (no matter the locale), but there were limits to any capacity, and, in the year 2000 A.D, there was just FAR too many souls in direct proportion to the once sizeable ranks of Hell's Hierarchy.
Too many ran free about the place. They'd even re-created (or brought with them: the point was unclear) many of their social structures with them.
And, unfortunately, because of the rules made from On High, there was a limited amount they could turn away (the Big Boss didn't take kindly to questions on this matter, so it was vague in all of Asmodai’s minds).
So, construction on a new Malbolge was in its fifth negotiation. The
Demon Duke of the Seventh Level, the Bubbling Magnificence of the Inferno (and many other titles which may be skipped) became Hell's Foreman. And then, all Heaven broke loose, at least in Asmodai’s opinion. The crew went on strike.
Red-hot shackles chained the souls in the first picket line while harpies picked out their eyes and waited until new ones were grown back, to repeat the process for eternity. The second picket line had their genitals pulled out their mouths and were forced to watch as varied creatures of hell had sex with those same genitals (no orgasms allowed in Hell, as you may have guessed). The third queue was hung by their toes by flesh-eating fungus while simulacrums of their mothers were repeatedly raped by leprous apes before their very eyes. The fourth set were chained to chairs and forced to watch the slide shows of the most boring vacations anyone ever had.
And then word came down from the Big Boss, and Asmodai was flabbergasted.
Another historical first: don't torture the help! In all the centuries, the hierarchy had excelled at: torture, agony, eternal suffering. What they had no conception of whatsoever: skilled labor. Lucifer could not retract the orders
Asmodai had placed on the first four groups, which was poor management in anyone's book. So, in his infinite wisdom, the Fallen Archangel simply ordered him not to do it anymore. The other word came down, causing Asmodai to bristle (it was fairly hard for him not to bristle, for he was full of them): work with them. Hang tough, but give them anything they want for now. The only aside was this (and this made the Demon Duke of the Seventh Level fairly salivate from all of his mouths): wait till we have all the room we need, we'll deal with them then.
Oh, how he could hardly wait! In seven of his twenty minds, he devised inventive, brilliant torment for these sanctimonious, self-righteous souls. Oh, how they would writhe! How they would scream!
In the meantime, his eyes slid down the list. After picking them up and reinserting them (although not in their original locations), Asmodai read the grievances. One particular item caught his eye (he promptly caught it back), he read with increasing rage and utter disbelief.
"YOU WANT WHAT!!!!????", he bellowed, causing the very foundations of
Hell itself to rumble.
"Which one is dat?", asked the steward, chomping his stogie with a complete lack of fear. Asmodai wanted to light the cigar and shove it in a particular part of the steward's anatomy. Asmodai pointed a taloned, gnarled putrid, hooked, maggoty, warped finger at one underlined paragraph (you should've seen his hands, if you think his fingers were bad!).
Placidly, the steward chomped, squinted at the grievance, and nodded.
"Yeah, just what it says. Wouldn't be askin', if youse guys kept the temperature at a decent level."
Grinding his fangs in anger most foul, Asmodai snarled, "I'll have to clear this with the Boss."
The steward smiled a half-crooked smile, and said, "You go ahead and do that. We'll wait till you get back."
Asmodai grew in size until he dwarfed the steward. Smoke belched from his many nostrils, his singed body hair stood on end, and his multiple horns gleamed wickedly in the crimson light of the Underworld. He was fell to look upon.
The steward pulled his stogie out of his mouth, spat a little of it off to the side, replaced the cigar, and looked up at all fifty feet of towering demonic rage, and very calmly said, "Well? Whaddya waiting for?"
Asmodai lifted one gargantuan leg, making ready to stomp this little toad into roadkill, when a little voice chimed in all of his heads: "Give them anything they want for now." No demon, Duke or not, could disobey a directive from the Archangel.
Imperiously, Asmodai shifted his bulk to move off, trying very hard to make it seem as if his departure was the reason for lifting his hoof off the ground (and not pulling it off very well). He pivoted on his other hoof (he had only two legs, surprisingly enough), and stormed off to the Throne.
"Make it some time today, wouldja?" called the steward after him.
An imp capered across his path, gleefully calling him a foreman, among other choice phrases. Imps are not renowned in Hell for their intelligence.
Asmodai simply looked at him, and the imp blew apart. He stomped on the pieces as he went, and the individual pieces screamed in agony.
Asmodai was sorely tempted to scream to the heavens above "DID YOU
KNOW THIS WAS GOING TO HAPPEN?!?!? IS THIS FUNNY?!?!?!?" But he didn't. You didn't address Up High directly, not if you were smart. He hoped that Armageddon would never happen.
Where in Hell was he going to find ice water?
The moral: You just can't argue with a Teamster.

I hope that it serves to tickle some funny bones. Hope you enjoy it. I do aim to please.


Saturday, February 18, 2006


The title here is about the Intelligent Design concept of Paley’s Watchmaker analogy (little known factoid here: Paley actually borrowed the metaphor from Cicero, no less, and it had been used sporadically throughout the ages).

Information on Paley can be found here, the Watchmaker analogy can be found here.

I won’t go into detail about all the problems with this particular theory, such as infinite regression, or the poorer examples of design in nature. These have been dealt with sufficiently, by others far more eloquent and smarter than myself.

No, I’m going to attempt to hamstring the damn thing (it’s only a concept, so I can be as brutal as I like), by pointing out a huge deficiency in the theory.

Creators are bound by the same laws as their creations.

Bear with me here: I can keep this simple.

An architect needs design a building according to specifications. Read: laws of physics. More often than not, the building itself will go upwards. The shape of said building can vary widely, but it would be a foolish builder indeed, to hoist a skyscraper into the sky in the shape of a sail (especially in, say, Chicago, the windy city). It could be done, theoretically, but the cost would be enormous. There are of course other factors brought into consideration: cost, materials, foundation (location, location, location is apparently not restricted to retailers), earthquake safety regulations (in any area prone to such variables), etc.

But of course, the law of gravity comes first.

The point here is simple enough: every watch made by a human is restricted by the same laws the creator of said device is prone to. Heat, leverage, gravity (have I mentioned gravity yet? Sorry), pressure, in short, long laundry lists of physical law. Oh, and of course, time.

If you throw the watchmaker and the watch off the Empire State building, not only will they fall at approximately the same rate, the end result will be remarkably similar on impact: the insides will go everywhere. One will be more liquid, but both will come apart at the seams.

Likewise, the creator will eventually wear out. As will the watch (though the latter may last somewhat longer, contingent on its design, how often it needs to be wound, when the battery wears out, etc).

Having dealt with this sufficiently, let’s look now at how the world is built.

For most (not all) living organisms, the structure is fairly clear. Since we are allegedly ‘created’ in god’s image, let us for the nonce restrict ourselves to that particular comparison.

The child is born, and grows. The parent raises the child. The child becomes an adult, and eventually supersedes the parent, due to the effect of old age, gravity, erosion, call it what you will. The parent dies, replaced by the child. And so the cycle continues: The child becomes a parent, and again, infancy, childhood, maturation, reproduction, death, unless this is interrupted in a number of ways.

If I were to compare human civilization to the development and growth of a human child, it would seem we are still in the tumults of adolescence.

Where, then, is this mysterious stranger who is said to have given us life? Where is he, when his aid is badly needed? Oh, and please, please spare me the sophistry of belief, faith, or whatever nauseating neologism can be substituted here. I know who my daddy is. He was flesh and blood, thank you very much.

If this is indeed the case, I say we have a class action suit on behalf of not only the five billion people currently alive on this earth, but the many billions who have gone before, some of whom laid down their lives in the name of this mysterious stranger, he-of-the-multitudinous-names, whom, judging from his behavior in the Old Testament, was a teenage father himself, thoroughly lacking in maturity, manners, or good sportsmanship, who allegedly promptly vanished from human view (strangely enough, at the conclusion of the New Testament), who thus far has failed to provide support of any kind, emotional, physical, or financial, to the teeming multitudes that are supposedly his numerous offspring.

In short: we have a deadbeat deity dad.

Judging from the structure of this world, and the shape it’s in, I’d have to say, if this deity ever did truly exist, he/she/it’s either

  1. Dead, or

  2. In some celestial nursing home, desperately trying to recall something s/he/it had forgotten.

Anyone got the number of a good lawyer?


Friday, February 17, 2006


Relax, friends and neighbors. Those words are not mine.

I was reading some semi-coherent garbage on an atheist blog at the Uncredible Hallq (not Chris, BTW, someone posting) , on his entry for the GOD OR NOT here, where this theist started this stream-of-consciousness crapola (standard stuff: they think they’ve hit some sort of ‘epiphany’, and of course the little dears feel obliged to share. Ain’t that nice?). So I’m reading this, and this fellow comes forth with:

“Yet we are part creature. Overwhelming evidence shows us that we all will die and not come back to life. The question is, does our consciousness die with our bodies? Here is where faith is key. You say yes and I say no. Your opinion is based on empirical evidence, and so is mine.”

Which in and of itself is a contradictory statement.

Somehow, this all put me in mind of an incident, some 11- 12-odd years ago.

We were all at a family function, at my brother-law’s stepfather’s house. My older sister, niece and I were sitting on a couch, watching a Clint Eastwood spaghetti western (and I believe it was The Good, The Bad, & The Ugly, I could be off), when this scene is shown:

Clint is riding off, while leaving the Mexican/Hispanic/guy of Spanish descent standing on a thinly railed fence, hands tied behind his back, noose around his neck, struggling to keep his balance while spitting vitriol at Clint’s fading back.

My poor niece, who was of tender years (and yes, it was stupid to be watching that particular movie with a child of her age) began to freak out. My older sister (who’s lacking in the empathy department BIG TIME), who had her arm around our niece, makes that face, you know the one, I’m out of my depth here, oh shit kinda face, pulls away, thoroughly nonplussed.

Time for fun uncle to take the helm on this one. So I hugged her, consoled her with what little I knew, etc, etc, et al. I’m pretty positive I didn’t use the ‘God’ or “Jesus’ crap (come to think of it, even pre-atheist, it wasn’t my M.O, not at all).

But her exact words were: “I don’t want to die!”

Poor little thing. Of course not. Who does?

Which, in my own haphazard way, leads right back to the whole religion topic.

They all want to be immortal.

We are all of us as unique as a snowflake, each of us. Panoplies of all shapes, sizes, and personalities. Of course it’s a hard bullet to bite. That we blink out of existence when the candle gutters and goes out.

One facet of religion is that it’s more or less the survival instinct gone haywire. It’s an intaglio on our nervous systems, a triggering of the fight-or-flight instinct, the adrenaline squirt of fear.

I recall as I was considering becoming an xtian, re-reading Revelation(s), and seriously weeping from the emotional impact and the implications of it. Boy, was I frightened! Those who know me know that I don’t scare easily.

This aspect is proof that evolution shaped this world. One proof, of many.

Fear. Survival. These things shaped us.

And we shaped religion.


Wednesday, February 15, 2006


An excellent, well-written expose of how history is taught.

This is one of those books that made me progressively angrier as I read it (yeah, I know, I know, Tai Chi is supposed to make one calmer: hey, you shoulda seen the way I was BEFORE I started doing it!).

It’s not that the history of my country has warts, or black eyes. It’s the bleedin’ sweeping-under-the-rug convenience of lying to children, lest they become disheartened, antagonistic, or apathetic towards their country.

Hell with that. It’s just plain LYING that gets up my nose.

James W. Loewen, for instance, begins by sallying out with these facts: Helen Keller was a Socialist, and Woodrow Wilson was a major-league bigot, who actually sent secret troops to aid the White Russians in their war against the Bolsheviks.

Hold the phone! What did you just say?

You read that right. Keller also helped found the ACLU. No rude commentary, please: she was WAY off about the Socialism thingamabob, but I for one appreciate the existence of the ACLU.

Wilson was a raving White Supremacist, and from what I garner, much of the ‘Evil Empire’ theology stems from his bad attitude. Read the book. He makes the Shrub look good, and that’s no mean feat.

Items one after another assault the senses: Columbus was a piece of shit (he gave his men the right to rape Native American women, of any age), the Pilgrims not only didn’t found this country (hey, it’d been colonized by the Spaniards, and even New Amsterdam preceded the Mayflower colony), they were actually smelly, grave-robbing lunatics.

It is myth shattering, on so many levels. The profound influence of the Native Americans is one such glossed-over fact. They had civilizations, weren’t quite the ‘Noble Savages’ that US history would relegate them to, as a matter of fact, it appears that they were quite influential in many aspects of our culture.

We see the glossing over of many facts. America is always represented in a positive light, ‘progress’ is hoisted on an undeserved petard, and the deep undercurrent of racism persists even to this day. All because of our ancestors’ Euro-centric idiocies.

Nobody wants to find out their heroes have feet of clay. It’s very much verboten to learn that Patrick Henry, whose bold cry of ‘Give me liberty, or give me death’ was very much simply rhetoric, when he fum-fahed at Abigail Adams’ letter about freeing the slaves. Or Lincoln’s waffling over the Emancipation Declaration (yeah, you read that one right, too).

The author points to much that is wrong with the history textbooks, and digs deep into the politics of the matter. He quotes one textbook author as saying, “I’m going to tell America’s youth that Thomas Jefferson didn’t believe in Jesus? You gotta be kidding me!”
And always, former Presidents are inevitably portrayed as strong leaders, men of virtue, oh no, no warts at all.

I might also add, as my commentary, it’s this ridiculous glossing that pervades our national identity to this very day. After reading this book, I look at ultra-conservatives in an entirely new light.

They’ve been brainwashed. To believe we are indeed the nadir of civilization. That Americans are and always will be several notches above the rest of the world. When we’re just people. With as many foibles, clay feet, and as error-prone as anyone else.

The author also notes, that morality and immorality are not inherited by history (paraphrased). The following words are my own:

But idiocy can be, by not learning the whole story, and taking lessons from those who have gone before.

And get this straight, here and now: I do love this country. Intensely.

But we need to shed this super-hero-of-the-world fantasy. Our government is the best and the brightest the world has yet seen.

But by no means does that elevate us to the superior moral ground. By no means does this mean we are above any and all reproach.

And by no means does that give us carte blanche to behave as we please, do what we want, or turn a blind eye to our less-than-illustrious past, or our current or past errors.

Growth means exactly that. Growing, learning from history, learning from our mistakes, and fer cryin’ out loud, folks, look other nations in the eye, not down our nose at them.

But don’t take my word for it. Read the book. Ponder.

And above all, be honest.



Those who know, will blink, & say “Whaaaa?” Those who don’t, might say, “Alright!”

Clear the air time:
I have made some minor corrections in my stance (as any REASONABLE human being would do), but in no way am I going to hold a large group of people (read: Muslims) accountable for the actions of a few.

I am, of course, referring to the ongoing issues in re: the cartoon debacle in Europe, specifically Denmark. Since everybody in the blogosphere is STILL going on and on about this, I’m going to weigh in yet again on this matter.

Now, I’ve been reading some posts, some which propose reasonable measures, others that go a LITTLE overboard, and some that are by far beyond the pale.

So to those of you who advocate the mushroom cloud, who wouldn’t blink an eye that innocent men, women, and children come apart at the seams like leaves in a tornado, who have no qualms about turning desert land into sheets of glass, do me this one little favor: get up, walk to your nearest mirror, look yourself dead in the eye, and say this one word; “Sociopath.”

There. Feel better now? Admitting you have a problem is the first step on the road to recovery.

To those who say, “See? The govt. is right! We’re vindicated in force-feeding democracy to them!” follow the above formula; only substitute the word “puppet.”

If anyone’s offended by this, well TS, baby. THAT’S freedom of speech.

What freedom of speech is NOT:

  1. The ability to say anything you damn well please, and

  2. The ability to yell ‘Fire!’ in a crowded theater, or incite to riot.
In other words, if your words have the effect of getting people hurt, or killed, you are most definitely responsible.
Example: I convince you that so-and-so is an utter psycho, I go OUT OF MY WAY to scare the everliving bejesus out of you, knowing you’re armed, and you turn around, and shoot so-and-so the second he/she comes waltzing out of the diner’s loo, am I responsible?

Damn tootin’.

Now, let’s lay out some real FACTS, troops.

Those bedamned cartoons were published 3 times. Yep. Correct-a-mundo. Twice by the SAME newspaper (once in September). Once in October, during Ramadan, in Egypt no less. Third time’s a charm . Not to mention the SAME newspaper refused to run some anti-Christian cartoons three years prior, so as not to offend anyone.

Repeat after me: double standards are a bitch.

I got into it recently on Sandmonkey’s blog with a fellow, who did indeed inform me of some facts.
KSA (Kingdom of Saudi Arabia) is apparently (anyone quibbling over the use of the word ‘apparently’ will be DELETED, no questions asked, BTW) exporting Wahabbi extremists over to the US, etc.

So I’m all for restricting emigration from the KSA. Which will be most difficult, as they are our ‘allies’ of sorts, and our Commander-in-thief has been seen holding hands with the ambassador of that country (and no, it means little or nothing, except that in most middle- and far eastern countries, friends of the same sex can do so, and it means absolutely NOTHING, except that they are very close, so deep-six the “oh ho ho!” and witless remarks).

Said fellow, after assuring me that the ‘war on terror’ was going well due to ‘eternal vigilance’; he also informs me that emigration has DOUBLED from the KSA, post 9/11. Which, pardon me, seems quite contradictory in the extreme. So I laid into him. It got, well, rather heated.

Read it here.

Apparently, this fellow agreed with someone I had a tussle with at the NGB, but obviously took in only a glimpse of the bigger picture (which, if you read the entire discussion, I finally got him to qualify a statement, asking the question twice, no less, that ran completely contrary to the other cat’s declaration).

All squabbling aside.

Both sides of the debacle are ASSHOLES. The Danish newspaper, for refusing to apologize, despite the obvious ramifications that are occurring. The Muslim side, for behaving in a wholly uncivilized and reprehensible manner.

The riots should NOT have happened. But again, said newspaper had to publish them twice in order to get some sort of response.

Then we have Condo Rice, claiming that ‘Syria and Iran’ were behind the fracas (and wow! Ain’t that fortuitous? How utterly convenient! ).

Should we roll over, with the words “WELCOME!” etched on our backs?
Hell no.
Should we bomb them into submission, because we’re scared out of our skulls?
Let’s not be stupid, people.

We all gotta share this planet. And since our country seems to have SOME sort of relationship with the countries in the ME, the crux of ANY ongoing relationship is the ability to talk to one another.

And if the lines of communication are down?There’s always divorce court, ain’t there?


Saturday, February 11, 2006


If an atheist is to go exploring out into the virtual netherworld of blogging debates, and begins to wrangle with them darn pesky theists, a distinct pattern emerges.

I refer, of course, to logical fallacies.

Now I have debated theists for lo these many months, and confess to being nonplussed at the seemingly utter abandonment of logical premises, of valid debate methodologies and the usage of fallacies by otherwise apparently intelligent folks.

In other words, whether they’re sharp as a marble, or brilliant, they all use the same lingo, patois, lingua franca, etc. To the point that I’d swear these people take classes in this horse puckey. “Welcome to Fallacies 101! Today, we’ll teach you how to drive the infidels absolutely bugfuckery with the complete and total absence of anything vaguely resembling logic. Guaranteed to set the blasphemers to gnashing their collective teeth (which they’ll be doing anyways, according to the Gospel of John, hee-haw). Today, we begin with the ad hominem attack. There are 3 variations on this fallacies…”, etc. You can guess the rest, I bet. “Tomorrow’s class will deal with ‘Poisoning of the well, and the third class…”

I have to make a distinct effort NOT to develop a facial tic when I talk to these folks.

Interestingly enough, a post on the NGB by rainbows4dinosaurs brought the matter of Saul’s visit to Athens to my attention.

So I did a touch o’ research. Began to poke around, seeing if there was indeed a root to the matter.

Matthew 18:3

And said, verily I say unto you, “Except ye be converted, and become as little children, ye shall not enter into the kingdom of heaven.”

Matthew 15:19

19 For example, out of the heart come evil thoughts, murders, adulteries, fornications, thieveries, false testimonies, and blasphemies. [Author’s note: this is often translated as ‘wicked reasonings’ by some]
From http://bible.cc/acts/17-18.htm -

Saul of Tarsus, AKA Paul, went to Athens (Acts 17:15) –
And they that conducted Paul brought him unto Athens: and receiving a commandment unto Silas and Timotheus for to come to him with all speed, they departed. Acts 17:16 Now while Paul waited for them at Athens, his spirit was stirred in him, when he saw the city wholly given to idolatry.
Acts 17:17 Therefore disputed he in the synagogue with the Jews, and with the devout persons, and in the market daily with them that met with him. Acts 17:18 Then certain philosophers of the Epicureans, and of the Stoics, encountered him. And some said, what will this babbler say? Other some, He seemeth to be a setter forth of strange gods: because he preached unto them Jesus, and the resurrection.

Most versions concur that he was called a ‘babbler’. From what I can garner, Paul was a proud man in many respects. It must’ve stuck in his craw, that anyone would insult him so. We can judge from the behavior of most religious folk to this day: no one enjoys to be called the fool, especially when one believes that they hold the ultimate Truth in their hands.

We see from his words in 1 Corinthians 3:18 – “Let no one deceive himself. If anyone thinks that he is wise among you in this world, let him become a fool, that he may become wise” and 3:19 – “For the wisdom of this world is foolishness with God. For it is written, "He has taken the wise in their craftiness."
As well as Colossians 2:8 – “Take heed lest there shall be any one that maketh spoil of you through his philosophy and vain deceit, after the tradition of men, after the rudiments of the world, and not after Christ:” coupled with the concept from James 2:4 – “were you not discriminating among yourselves, and did you not become judges with wicked reasonings?”, that his visit to Athens left a bit of a sour taste in his mouth.

We then defer to Augustine, who said: “Seek not to understand that you may believe, but believe that you may understand.” – not to mention Tertullian’s motto: “It is absurd, ergo it must be true”, that Xtianity perceives logic and reason as antithetical to belief.
And then, farther down the road, we see these points raised by Martin Luther:
"Reason is the greatest enemy that faith has: it never comes to the aid of spiritual things, but--more frequently than not --struggles against the Divine Word...”
"Reason must be deluded, blinded, and destroyed. Faith must trample underfoot all reason, sense, and understanding, and whatever it sees must be put out of sight and ... know nothing but the word of God."
"The damned whore Reason...."
"To be a Christian, you must pluck out the eye of reason."
"Whoever wants to be a Christian should tear the eyes out of his reason." - well, methinks a pattern emerges here.

It seems that Xtians as a rule are very nearly raised from their mothers’ teats with respects to this utter violation of the objective reality of this world. It also lends new strength to Dawkins’ concept of the meme as a psychological virus, as new, or ‘true’ believers readily begin mouthing fallacies from the moment of their inception.

It becomes readily apparent, that indeed reason is the antithesis of faith. It topples the spire of belief, lays waste to the fields of divinity, forces Humanity to see the inconveniences of religion, and knocks over the fragile house of cards that epiphany built.

And yet the believers dance these dervish steps to prevent the toppling of the house of cards, to re-erect the tenuous spires of clubs, diamonds, spades and hearts, building ever more intricate pinnacles that will collapse upon the slightest breeze.

And all the while, the builders deny the 52-card pick-up they perform each time. Careful rearrangement of fallen cards to the fragile architecture of their beliefs.


Monday, February 06, 2006



Let’s get this out into the open, before I go any further:

  1. Am most assuredly NOT Muslim, nor will I ever be, and

  2. Am most assuredly NOT in favor of the recent riots in Europe over a bunch of stupid cartoons, and

  3. Am not a Muslim apologist of any sort.
So for those of you who attempt to infer any of the above, I politely offer you both of my middle fingers, and obsequiously ask that you go piss up a rope.

I’m not providing a link to the cartoons, or any of the other items proffered in this post. I’m in a foul mood today, and will leave it to the gentle readers to do their own research, and prove me wrong.

There are apparently riots going on in Europe, over the Danish press releasing some cartoons ridiculing the Islamic faith. Embassies have been burned, 1 fatality (as of this writing, that I’m aware of).

Should Muslims be angry? Hey, people is people: we get teed off at the stupidest things. Can’t tell people how to respond. Protesting? Sure. Rioting? No. Of course, coming from a culture where the only way to get a point across is by violent riots doesn’t help.

No excuses offered, none accepted. While we can’t IMPOSE our mindset on them, it’s only sense that it works both ways. Or, ‘When in Rome’, etc.

The ‘toons were somewhat tame, in comparison to what I’ve seen here in the States. Reflective of what the world sees them as.

What’s really got up my nose is that I was so WRONG.

About Islam, that is.

After some verbal squabbles with my fellow atheists (some of them actually suggesting we EVICT as many Muslims from America as is legally possible), I went to the Evangelical Atheist (who is one of my other favorite blogs), started reading through his ‘God is a Dick’ series (a more recent one, on the Koran). Started applying my own standards to the ongoing debate about the issue (by LOOKING IT UP).

And found out that many of us (I mean citizens, not just atheists) are indeed Cherry-Picking sections out of the Koran to bolster our misconceptions.

I absolutely LOATHE being wrong.  All this time, I’d been taking the word of other people: Muslims are violent, they’re dangerous, blahdeblahdeblahdeblah.

Everyone’s dangerous. Religious or not.

Here’s some of the more commonly quoted ‘proofs’ of  how violent Muslims are:

YUSUFALI: O Prophet! strive hard against the unbelievers and the Hypocrites, and be firm against them. Their abode is Hell,- an evil refuge indeed.

Here’s the following passage.

YUSUFALI: They swear by Allah that they said nothing (evil), but indeed they uttered blasphemy, and they did it after accepting Islam; and they meditated a plot which they were unable to carry out: this revenge of theirs was (their) only return for the bounty with which Allah and His Messenger had enriched them! If they repent, it will be best for them; but if they turn back (to their evil ways), Allah will punish them with a grievous penalty in this life and in the Hereafter: They shall have none on earth to protect or help them.

YUSUFALI: And slay them wherever ye catch them, and turn them out from where they have Turned you out; for tumult and oppression are worse than slaughter; but fight them not at the Sacred Mosque, unless they (first) fight you there; but if they fight you, slay them. Such is the reward of those who suppress faith.

YUSUFALI: But if they cease, Allah is Oft-forgiving, Most Merciful.

YUSUFALI: And fight them on until there is no more Tumult or oppression, and there prevail justice and faith in Allah; but if they cease, Let there be no hostility except to those who practice oppression.

YUSUFALI: Fighting is prescribed for you, and ye dislike it. But it is possible that ye dislike a thing which is good for you, and that ye love a thing which is bad for you. But Allah knoweth, and ye know not.

YUSUFALI: They ask thee concerning fighting in the Prohibited Month. Say: "Fighting therein is a grave (offence); but graver is it in the sight of Allah to prevent access to the path of Allah, to deny Him, to prevent access to the Sacred Mosque, and drive out its members." Tumult and oppression are worse than slaughter. Nor will they cease fighting you until they turn you back from your faith if they can. And if any of you Turn back from their faith and die in unbelief, their works will bear no fruit in this life and in the Hereafter; they will be companions of the Fire and will abide therein.

So I looked at the passages surrounding the misquoted passages.
Now, it’s been pointed out to me, that if I lived in a Muslim country, under shari’a, I would be subject to dhimmi, and as I’m an atheist, the more extreme members of said country could (probably legally) separate my head from my neck.

Well, lucky for me, I don’t live in any such country. So such an observation is relatively worthless to the subject at hand.

Last I checked, invasion wasn’t on the checklist. Sure, utter and complete destruction of the invader. If we withdraw from the region, hey, that might change. One can only hope.

No, merely speculating, lest you pounce. So breathe deep, and relax. Chances are slim to none. Or, as Tom Tomorrow said (in a cartoon I cannot find, so I think it was he): “’Cause SUVs don’t run on Kim Chee, baby!”

So, by looking at passages from their own holy book, it becomes apparent, that Muslims are NOT required to savage anyone not of their ilk.

From the passage at answers.com – dhimmi:
“Bernard Lewis comments:
Two stereotypes dominate most of what has been written on tolerance and intolerance in the Islamic world. The first depicts a fanatical warrior, an Arab horseman riding out of the desert with a sword in one hand and the Qur'an in the other, offering his victims the choice between the two. This picture […] is not only false but also impossible […]. The other image, almost equally preposterous, is that of an interfaith, interracial utopia, in which men and women belonging to different races, professing different creeds, lived side by side in a golden age of unbroken harmony, enjoying equality of rights and of opportunities, and toiling together for the advancement of civilization. Both images are of course wildly distorted; yet both contain, as stereotypes often do, some elements of truth. Two features they have in common are that they are relatively recent, and that they are of Western and not Islamic origin.
It is only very recently that some defenders of Islam began to assert that their society in the past accorded equal status to non-Muslims. No such claim is made by spokesman for resurgent Islam, and historically there is no doubt that they are right. Traditional Islamic societies neither accorded such equality nor pretended that they were so do”
The reader is invited to read the entire entry (yeah, I know, said I wasn’t going to post sources, but I’m getting soft in me old age – yeesh!)

There seems to be a wide divergence amongst Islamic nations, in re: to these laws. So it’s not completely “DIE INFIDEL!” nor is it Rebecca of Sunnybrook Farm.

What a surprise. We’ve been misinformed. I will take this even a step further.

Went to WorldNet Daily - the article was off the blogroll at the NGB - when this caught my eye:
"There were peaceful rallies against the cartoons in Iraq where hundreds demanded an apology from the European Union."
I'm having some seriously deep thoughts (no wise cracks! ain't the 1st time) about this.
People used to piss on the Irish, now that's not allowed.
People mistreated women. Now that's not allowed.
People mistreated blacks. Now that's not allowed (at least in most places, not all).
In retrospect, there were the Watts & L.A riots. Underprivileged classes going berserk at mistreatment.
Again, not condoning the behavior (& getting sick of having to qualify that every FUCKING time).
So, 1st off:
What're we gonna do, when the last scapegoat is gone?
2nd off:
We've seen a prevalent attitude (I blame Wilson mostly, but not for all of it), inasmuch as we always seem to need an 'Evil Empire'  (At least in the 20th century). Going into the 21st.
So, reality check for all of those who've swallowed this 'us vs. them' garbage':
This is pap & propaganda. Yep, the people in the ME hate us. Sure. If I used your backyard as a bathroom, & told you to go suck a rope when you complained about the smell, you'd be surely justified in being a little irate, wouldn't ya?
So get off the neo-con bandwagon, those of you stumping for eviction, and/or elimination, and/or isolation, & SMELL THE ROSES.
We need to start listening BEFORE the body count rises. Or is added to.

And let’s get this out into the open, shall we?

I do love this country. It’s a wonderful country. But we’ve got unpaid debts, to a whole LOT of folks, apologies to be made, problems to be amended.

So we need to get off this high horse we’ve mounted our national identity on, and start behaving as if we live in this world, NOT JUST AMERICA.

Because we put it in writing: “ALL MEN ARE CREATED EQUAL.”

No escape clause. No loopholes. Let’s live by our principles, people. Even if it’s inconvenient. Even if it hurts. Even if there’s a touch of fear mixed in.

Because, if you walk in fear, or in anger, you’ll always be a target. Whether you’re an individual, or a nation.

And that’s my nickel’s worth. Spend it wisely, and well.


Friday, February 03, 2006


A bit of brief history here:
My little sister is one of those oblivious folks, who tends to take every fuzzy little bit of nonsensical email fluff, & forwards it on at the behest of the email, without researching it at all. I used to be on her forwarding list. I asked her (more than once) not to send me any more garbage.
Deaf ears.
I received this sometime in September.
Needless to say, it went from eye rolling to outright rage. So I drafted up a rebuttal, and clicked on REPLY TO EVERYONE.
It was a fairly sizable list, too.


I received this asinine thing via my sis, & have responded to EVERYONE in that set of addresses.I very courteously ask you DON'T SEND THIS OFF TO ANYONE ELSE! I have done the research, & all this nonsense is just that: nonsense.You're being lied to. Feel free to challenge me on any of these points. Go ahead & forward this commentary to everyone you've sent this to. I welcome any & all discussion, civil or otherwise. Normally, I leave these chain mail things alone, but this 1 is so tragically off on so many points, I will have to respond. THE LAW IS THE LAW This is one of the better e-mails I have received in a long time! I hope this makes its way around the USA several times over!!!!! So Be It! THE LAW IS THE LAW So if the US government determines that it is against the law for the words "under God" to be on our money, then, so be it.

"Under God" was inserted in 1954, at the behest of the knights of Columbus.

And if that same government decides that the "Ten Commandments" are not to be used in or on a government installation, then, so be it.
Since this country was NOT founded on Biblical premises, this is correct. Nor should the government be seen as sponsoring ANY religion whatsoever.
And since they already have prohibited any prayer in the schools,

This is a LIE, people. State-led prayer is prohibited. A student can pray anytime. State-led prayer is banned.

on which they deem their authority,

WRONG. Authority is deemed by the PEOPLE OF THE UNITED STATES, not God.

then so be it. I say, "so be it," because I would like to be a law abiding US citizen. I say, "so be it," because I would like to think that smarter people than I are in positions to make good decisions. I would like to think that those people have the American Publics' best interests at heart. BUT, YOU KNOW WHAT ELSE I'D LIKE? Since we can't pray to God, can't Trust in God and cannot Post His Commandments in Government buildings,

Whoever came up w/this crap should read the Constitution, the Bill of Rights, the Declaration, & look up the Establishment clause (Lemon test) to the 1st amendment. Also, the 10 Commandments don't apply to Gentiles: these are the Noahide laws.

I don't believe the Government and it's employees should participate in the Easter and Christmas celebrations which honor the God that our government is eliminating from many facets of American life.

This isn't pithy, it's just stupid

I'd like my mail delivered on Christmas, Good Friday, Thanksgiving & Easter. After all, it's just another day. I'd like the US Supreme Court to be in session on Christmas, Good Friday, Thanksgiving & Easter as well as Sundays. After all, it's just another day. I'd like the Senate and the House of Representatives to not have to worry about getting home for the "Christmas Break." After all it's just another day. I'm thinking that a lot of my taxpayer dollars could be saved, if all government offices & services would work on Christmas, Good Friday & Easter.

Not very bright. Administrative costs would WAY up for all of these idiotic ideas. Thanksgiving isn't a religious holiday, you moron.

It shouldn't cost any overtime since those would be just like any other day of the week to a government that is trying to be "politically correct.

Whoever said this has no clue what's going on.

In fact.... I think that our government should work on Sundays (initially set aside for worshipping God...) because, after all, our government says that it should be just another day....

Original Sabbath day was on Saturday. Look it up in the Bible.

What do you all think???? If this idea gets to enough people, maybe our elected officials will stop giving in to the minority opinions and begin, once again, to represent the 'majority' of ALL of the American people.

Okay, listen up: you are fostering a nonsensical misperception. The whole reason much of this is going on, is that the Supreme Court ruled (rightly) that the majority SHOULDN'T force their views on the minority. This isn't 'politcal correctness': you are SO WRONG ON THIS MATTER. Religion has a poor track record in re: tolerance.

SO BE IT........... Please Dear Lord, Give us the help needed to keep you in our country!

Worship your god on your own time. Keep your hands off my, and other people's, rights. This is a democracy, not a theocracy. We the people made a compact with ourselves. We weren't led here by some Old Testament prophet. Inserting 'God' into our money, our pledge, our schools, is a clear violation of the FIRST AMENDMENT. Go look it up. It's bi-directional.

'Amen' and 'Amen' Touche! These are definitely things I never thought about but from now on, I will be sure to questions those, in government, who support these changes.

I support every change.

At the top, it says "I hope this makes its way around the USA several times over!!!!!"

Let's hope not. This is a compendium of idiocy, propaganda, and outright lies.

I received this in response:

Let me see if I've got this right. You want me to go into that room with all those kids, and fill their every waking moment with a love for learning. And I'm supposed to instill a sense of pride in their ethnicity, modify their disruptive behavior, observe them for signs of abuse and even censor their T-shirt messages and dress habits. You want me to wage a war on drugs and sexually transmitted diseases, check their backpacks for weapons of mass destruction, and raise their self esteem. You want me to teach them patriotism, good citizenship, sportsmanship, fair play, how to register to vote, how to balance a checkbook, and how to apply for a job. I am to check their heads for lice, maintain a safe environment, recognize signs of anti-social behavior, and make sure all students pass the mandatory state exams, even those who don't come to school regularly or complete any of their assignments. Plus! , I am to make sure that all of the students with handicaps get an equal education regardless of the extent of their mental or physical handicap. And I am to communicate regularly with the parents by letter, telephone, newsletter and report card. All of this I am to do with a piece of chalk, a computer, a few books, a bulletin board, a big smile AND on a starting salary that qualifies my family for food stamps. You want me to do all of this and yet you expect me....not to pray?"
To this, I answered:
By all means, go ahead & pray.Just do it on your own time. Besides, sounds like you don't have enough time to.

By the way, sis, you’re not a teacher.

& followed it up with:
"For those of you who cheered that LAW IS THE LAW business, a link for you all: http://dubsays.blogspot.com/2005/10/case-for-public-schooling.html
Prayer belongs in the CHURCH - Not in the schools, and certainly not in the government.We're talking reality here people. Not the Jerry Springer show. An argument for popularity belongs ON THE TALK SHOW CIRCUIT. I cannot emphasize this enough. & for those of you who have not been an outcast in the K12 school system, or a minority, I speak from experience: it's Hell on Earth, baby. & you want to mix religion into that steaming cauldron of hormones and identity formation and conflict? Do some research, instead of blindly cheering something that on the surface SEEMS reasonable. Because that LAW IS THE LAW nonsense is the most specious nonsense I've ever read. And I can prove it."

Guess what?
I don’t receive any of her ‘fuzzy’ bullshit via email anymore.
Now, I was incorrect on one point: Thanksgiving is indeed a religious holiday.
I also found out later that her phone was ringing off the hook because of this. Former fellow employees, relatives (I’m guessing), etc.
“Who is this guy, and what’s he ranting and raving about?” was the gist I received (second-hand: we weren’t too damn close, & the rift is widening).
Chances are, I was dismissed out of hand as ‘moonbat’, wingnut, whatever.
Squeaky wheel gets the grease, I say.

And that, dear readers, is my nickel’s worth.