Religion


Bill OReilly really shouldnt talk to atheists, because every time he does, he looks like an idiot.

The last time he did this, (Feb 2011) it was in reference to the tides, saying ‘you cant explain that’

This ridiculousness happens at 1:50 into the clip.

And, Im by no means any type of science scholar, but a quick visit to wiki can give you this: tides are the rise and fall of sea levels caused by the combined effects of the gravitational forces exerted by the Moon and the Sun and the rotation of the Earth.

*****

But, Ive veered off the topic I wanted to cover in this post…..

Once again, Bill OReilly brings David Silverman in for an interview – this time, calling atheists fascists for fighting the separation between church and state. (11-2-12)

You see, Bill OReilly and many other conservative people want you to believe that there is a war on Christmas.

The simple fact is that they are attempting to have public facilities not endorse ANY religion over another. You dont see this man arguing about whether a church or someones personal property can have certain Christmas displays, just equal time for ALL (or none) on public property.

And, while we are on the subject of the wrong-ness of Bill OReilly, lets just inform him that Christianity IS a religion, NOT a philosophy.

Being a Methodist, Catholic, Baptist or whatever are DENOMINATIONS of the Christian faith.

But, watch the video for yourself:

Oh, and before I forget, the ‘Christmas’ tree adorned in silver and gold, as well as several other traditions Christians use to celebrate, are not in fact Christian in nature. They are pagan. (Some Christian churches have openly refused to put up Christmas decorations due to this fact)

See Jer 10:2-4: “Do not learn the ways of the nations . . . For the customs of the peoples are worthless; they cut a tree out of the forest, and a craftsman shapes it with his chisel. 4 They adorn it with silver and gold; they fasten it with hammer and nails so it will not totter.”

(Please refer to the section on decorations: Christmas & Did Christians Steal Christmas?)

*****

And that, is where the line is drawn.

Advertisements

Again, this post has grown to include many supporting links and videos. Please read to the end and check out what I have posted. Thanks!

*****

The more I discuss the ongoing situation regarding Palestinians and Israelis, the more I have to scratch my head. I am perplexed as to how some of my friends can be so blind to the human rights violations that have been occurring by the hands of the state of Israel.

I can understand some of the confusion, but once you are faced with what the Palestinian people go thru on a day to day basis, how can you still idly sit by and defend this behavior?

Even this afternoon, I have people posting comments stating they have no sympathy for the Palestinian people. I just dont understand the lack of empathy or the lack of humanitarianism.

Those who ‘agree’ with my view, cannot understand why survivors and descendants of the Holocaust try and put others people in the same position they were in and have been in many of times throughout history.

I have touched on this subject in my last two posts (Israel – Gaza, Its Complicated & Gaza – As it pertains to Palestinians and Israelis)

But some of these atrocities need to be addressed once again.

And, let me straight up say this, since obviously it needs saying….I am not anti-Israel, Anti-Semitic, or pro-Palestinian. I am FOR human rights. I do not think that ANY of these people, whether Jew or Arab should die just because they are different religions.

And, as Ive said multiple times via social media, for as many people like to point out that Arabs call for the extinction of the Jews, there is just as many instances where the Jews have proven they want to exterminate the Arabs.

There are extremists in all branches of faith, including Christianity. I am talking about a complete lack of empathy for Palestinians due to that type of extremism that is occurring by the hands of the state of Israel. Lets get real now, Palestinians live separated from any way of supporting themselves, they live separated from their own culture in the West Bank, and Israel has been clearly been the aggressor in this, even breaking their own cease fire agreements on many cases. Where are the cries for the innocent Palestinians who are being malnourished? Where are the cries after groups like World Vision actually SHOW what is going on in Gaza?

Both sides have done wrong. But it takes TWO sides to even ATTEMPT to make things right.

*****

Settlements, Ethnic Cleansing, Human Rights Violations

As I said in my last post, at one time the Jews flourished amongst the Arabs. It wasnt until 1915 that Jewish ‘citizens’ began settlements, and the situation was again aggravated in 1922 when land was stripped from the Palestinians. Ethnic cleansing began in the  The Deir Yassin Massacre of 1948 .

In case you want a short list of some of the direct Israeli Violations of U.N. Security Council Resolutions – This list is dated from 1948-2009.

In 2009, Human Rights Watch reported Israel accused of indiscriminate phosphorus use in Gaza. Even the United Nations warned Israel against shooting this substance into densely populated areas. Israel attempted to claim that Hamas was using Palestinians as human shields but a further investigation into this claim, could not be proven.

And, in a case reported on just this past May, an Israeli settler shoots Palestinian in West Bank. There are too many cases of settlers shooting Palestinians in both Gaza and the West Bank to share all those links.

When Hamas was elected six years ago, Israel said they wanted to starve Palestinian residents of Gaza. Israels starvation diet for Gaza The fact that a blockade was built blocking Palestinians from their farmland and Israel controls the border shows that Israel shows no regard for the innocent Palestinians that reside in Gaza.

We also know that Israels water supply is controlled by Israel and that the World Health Organization and UNEP was warning that diseases like hepatitis could be on the rise. Gazas water supply near collapse (This article is dated 2009) At the time, only 5-10% of the water supply was fit for human consumption.

A post from haaretz states that Israel aimed at keeping Gaza on the brink of collapse – QUOTE: “As part of their overall embargo plan against Gaza, Israeli officials have confirmed to (U.S. embassy economic officers) on multiple occasions that they intend to keep the Gazan economy on the brink of collapse without quite pushing it over the edge,” one of the cables read.” ENDQUOTE

A more recent post (Nov 2012) states that Israel is cutting Gaza off from food, water and electricity: Inciting war crimes: Israel minister says force Gaza population into Egypt, cut off water, electricity

History is repeated as the international community turns its back on Gaza QUOTE – The Palestinian Centre for Human Rights (PCHR), and other organisations, prepared countless well-documented cases containing concrete allegations of widespread war crimes perpetrated by Israeli forces. END QUOTE

*****

Why Should the United States Even Care?

The American media and the United States government are all complicit in what happens in Gaza. (See: U.S. Military Aid and the Israel/Palestine Conflict for a general graph and make sure to read the whole page and check out the links provided)

In an article I came across this morning via the Daily Beast entitled Netanyahu: No Current Plans for Gaza Ground War there is a startling discovery: QUOTE- The most effective missile-defense system appears to be Iron Dome, for which the U.S. granted $205 million in Fiscal Year 2011, which ended on Sept. 30. -END QUOTE

As much as I find regarding United States taxpayer dollars supporting Israeli military, I am always surprised at just how much of our dollars have been sent to Israel.

Im not the only one noticing the fact that when Israel is attacking Palestinians in Gaza, it is our tax dollars paying for part of it. The Guardian in the UK posted  Stop pretending the US is an uninvolved, helpless party in the Israeli assault on Gaza – And for those of you who claim President Obama has shunned Israel when he visited the Middle East??? Just read this article.

QUOTE – Israeli aggression is possible only because of direct, affirmative, unstinting US diplomatic, financial and military support for Israel and everything it does. END QUOTE

*****

Hey Israel….what the what?

Israel killed its own subcontactor when it killed Jabari

QUOTE: “Ahmed Jabari was a subcontractor, in charge of maintaining Israel’s security in Gaza… Israel demanded of Hamas that it observe the truce in the south and enforce it on the multiplicity of armed organizations in the Gaza Strip. The man responsible for carrying out this policy was Ahmed Jabari… Jabari was also Israel’s partner in the negotiations for the release of Gilad Shalit; it was he who ensured the captive soldier’s welfare and safety, and it was he who saw to Shalit’s return home last fall.” END QUOTE

Other reports shown that Jabari WAS indeed working on negotiations for a permenent truce with Israel when he was assassinated: A Permanent Truce with Israel was Being Negotiated as Assassination of Hamas Leader Occurred

*****

As much as I know Ill get heat by sharing Noam Chomsky (because people say hes only visited Gaza once, therefore he shouldnt get notice?) I will share it anyway – Noam Chomsky: My Visit to Gaza, the World’s Largest Open-Air Prison

*****

I ran across a video of Netanyahu totally unaware of a camera filming. I dont know if the translation is correct, but if it is, Israel just expects us to keep defending them, even if Netanyahu knows hes wrong.

*****

Alot of my friends like to point out instances in which Hamas has sent rockets into Israel, and calls those ‘war crimes’ like in the post seen on the National Review –   Maintaining Clarity in the Debate over Gaza Tactics – but let me remind you of the landscape of Gaza. It is 4 miles wide and 25 miles long, most of this area is densely populated.

Let me also remind you that BOTH sides of this argument has every right to defend itself. And let me remind you that this launching of rockets, missiles and bombs has been a tit for tat. Both sides have continually responded to the other side.

*****

While I was editing this post, two friends sent me the following link: Op-Ed: Spare Us the Pieties on Gaza — My comment on this link can be explained by the other blogs Ive posted on this topic. And, not that I would expect anything else from an op-ed piece, but its very one sided.

QUOTE- As for those “refugee camps” – why are they “refugee camps” when Israel handed over all that territory for a nation to be built in peace and security alongside Israel? Why are all Palestinians automatically refugees even after they’ve been given a home? The only true refugees are the thousands of Israelis who were driven from Gaza and still live in trailer parks. No tears for them in this world that still dreams of Auschwitz. END QUOTE

I have already shown in prior posts how this is entirely untrue. Israel has handed over nothing. (Gaza – As it pertains to Palestinians and Israelis) Settlers have encroached Palestinian territories time after time.  And the Palestinian Right of Return has been refused by Israel, as well as the fact that most of the property owned by Palestinians have been leveled.

See: Topic-Ethnic Cleansing

*****

Here is a fabulous post by a Rabbi Outrage in Gaza Redux who, in his own words feels enraged by what is occurring in Gaza.

*****

Here is a powerful excerpt of a speech made in 2010:

*****

Documentaries Worth a Watch

And for those of you still with me here, I ask that you watch the film, Tears of Gaza, embedded below: 

If, for some reason the video is removed, you can watch it here: Tears of Gaza

Or, watch this documentary made by Harry Fear, Martyred in Gaza: Martyred in Gaza

Occupation 101 – the truth about the Israeli-Palestinian conflict 

Peace, Propaganda and the Promised Land: 

*****

Now, Im aware that some of you will not watch these.

Some of you will NEVER see the mistreatment of Palestinians as inhumane, and some of you who wont see this as inhumane will bring up Israel as being the ones treated inhumanely. But ask yourself this: Who in Israel is being kept from the necessities of life (food, water, electricity)?

After some heavy discussions on this latest Israeli-Palestinian war, I decided to do some research that wasnt buried in pro-con sources. I wanted to know when the Israeli Occupation began in Gaza and why.

And, I didnt want to use biblical-literalists opinions.

After my last blog post on this topic, (Israel – Gaza, Its Complicated) I planned on doing a post strictly pertaining the United Nations violations going on in this area, but a facebook friend of mine posted a graphic that led me to do this post.

Heres the image: 

Biblical Context: Israel believes that God told them this land belonged to them and no one else. I found a page on wikipedia that strictly pertains to the lands of Israel based on biblical scripture: Lands of Israel

However, there is the simple fact that Christianity began in Palestine, and that Palestinians were among the first converts to Christianity. (See –Aint Nobody Gonna Like This / The Persecution of the Jews in the Roman Empire (300-428) / The Rise And Triumph Of Christianity / Palestinian People / Acculturation)

Those biblical representations aside, there are some facts about Palestinians and Jews that need to be discussed when the subject of Gaza and the Israeli occupation is brought up.

There is no truth to the centuries old adage that the war between the Palestinians and Israelis has been ongoing since the beginning of time. (I just found out this fact today, and Im pretty shocked) In fact, prior to the Zionist Jew conflict, Jews actually flourished amongst the Arab world.

From what I could find regarding this conflict, (not on a wikipedia page) most of the problems arose around 1915 when the Jews began to start settlement areas. This situation was further aggravated in 1922 when land was stripped from the Palestinians by the Jews. (Mandates for Palestine)

During the time of World War 2, over 150,000 Jews fled to Palestine, as refugees. (What happened in Palestine during World War II?) This migration would in fact, assist the Jews in the ‘conquering’ of Palestine.

In 1947, Britain requested that a permanent solution be addressed by the United Nations. (I admit, I do not fully understand this situation due to the oddly worded 2 state solution [Arab/Jew] or Independent solution. And I still do not fully understand which one they went with) (Israel Statehood)

Either way, Israel was granted statehood and became a member of the United Nations shortly thereafter and the destruction of Palestine truly began.

Alot of people have stated the similarities between the American Indians and the Palestinian people due to the way the land was ‘divided’ up. Jews were given the fertile land while Palestinians were (in my words) screwed.

It was around this time that Palestinians were forced off their property. Many fled during the Deir Yassin massacre (The Deir Yassin Massacre of 1948) In watching several documentaries, the Palestinians were clearly a victim of ethnic cleansing.

Once the Palestinians fled these areas (some estimates say 700,000 Palestinians fled), the Israelis took over that land. It was also around this time that we know that the West Bank was controlled by Jordan and Gaza controlled by Egypt.

After the United Nations enacted a resolution in 1948 that would allow Palestinians a right to return (forgive the use of wikipedia, but its the most comprehensive on this subject Palestinian Right of Return) However, Israeli leaders would not allow that to occur.

Unfortunately, even though Palestinians still held deeds to properties, they were turned into Jewish settlements. And lets be clear about what that means.  The land owned by Palestinians who fled was managed by the Israeli government and it was leveled.

In 1967, another war broke out and another exodus of Palestinians took place. (Some of these Palestinians were expelled) These refugees fled to the West Bank and Gaza.

Even after the United Nations passed resolution after resolution, they failed to take action.

Ill skip ahead a bit to the late 1980s when the first intifada occured. Palestinians demonstrated/protested in a non-violent manner against the Israelis. (Most of these demonstrations were kids throwing rocks at tanks) Yitsak Rabin decided to respond with the brutality that we now know to be called ‘break the bones’. (I will not link to those videos but they are easily found)

During the 7 years of peace after the Oslo Process was began (1993) the Palestinians plight actually got worse. Israeli settlements expanded and any demonstration/protest against Oslo labeled you as a terrorist.

Over 740 homes were demolished during the Oslo Process.

In 2006, the PLO (Palestinian Liberation Organization) was seen as a failure and Hamas was voted in.

*****

Jewish settlers gain the benefit because Israel controls the power, the water, trash removal, and the roads, while Palestinians suffer from a lack of those services.

Most Jewish settlers on the always changing borders of Gaza/West Bank, have been offered ‘low’ costs for housing. They get a loan to relocate and if they are still there in 10 years, it does not need to be paid back.

In 2000, the Second Intifada began. The Palestinians mobilized against the oppression. It should be noted that Israelis used live ammunition against unarmed protesters.

*****

Palestinians have lived in an oppressive environment for years. They have to go thru various checkpoints just to go down the street. This is also a clear violation of international law.

The saddest thing is that United Nations havent been allowed into Gaza to see these violations because Israel wont let them in. (Am I the only one who finds this odd?)

*****

In August 2005, after 35+ years of occupation, Israeli forces began dismantling settlements in Gaza.

This was seen as a sacrifice.

Over $227,000 was offered to those settlers who offered to relocate. Israel asked the United States to pay twenty-two BILLION in aid to cover this cost. (I can find no sources as to when this money was allocated)

*****

And while Israels presence is no longer ‘visible’ they still control the air space, water, and the border.

Speaking of border – there was a separation wall built. Its said to be twice the height of the Berlin wall. Its used to separate Palestinians in Gaza from land, family, schools and medical treatment.

*****

There is now an entire generation of Palestinian children who have watched as their families have been treated in an inhumane manner.

*****

Human rights activists who have been allowed into Gaza (i.e. World Vision) have been reporting these living conditions to no avail.

In fact, when activist Rachel Corrie was crushed by a bulldozer at the age of 23, the United States Congress refused to investigate.

*****

Israel has the largest military presence in the world (behind the United States) and is the 5th largest nuclear power in the world.

*****

It is also worth noting that the United States is seen as the sole supporter of Israel. Most of this support comes from two areas: The US lobbying organization known as AIPAC or from the fundamental religious groups, who believe that a strong Israel is ‘Gods plan’.

These organizations/groups would like us to view this as a good vs. evil situation, and would like us to have blind support of Israel.

Im sorry, but those of us who look beyond the deceit that our American media presents to us cannot do this. Our media has a total bias regarding the plight of the Palestinian people.

It is clear that Israel does not abide by the rules and regulations set forth at the 4th Geneva Convention – (i.e. settlements, control of travel etc)

*****

American tax payers support this. Israel receives the most aid of any other country that the United States supports. (Israel gets 1/3 of the total aid by the US each year) In 2003, TEN BILLION dollars in aid went to Israel.

This money could be spent domestically in many areas. (But thats an entirely different blog)

This post follows a discussion about a story about a Victorias Secret model who quits the business I had on facebook early this afternoon:

(http://abcnews.go.com/blogs/entertainment/2012/02/victorias-secret-model-quits-to-reserve-body-for-my-husband/)

My initial comment on a post on facebook was this: Women and their bodies do NOT belong to anyone. Including their husbands.

I was told that ‘she didnt mean it ‘that’ way’ and that she didnt want her body on display for others to lust after.

In jest, I made another comment saying that if I had half the body she had, Id show it off to any and every one….which, come on now, thats pretty funny.

I further asked that if her husband knew she was a Victorias Secret model, why should she feel compelled to quit, in order to give her marriage a chance. I then questioned how modeling is UnChristian.

But then some guy I dont know said this: (Ive bolded the truly offensive part) ‘This women, of her own free choice, chose to do something she felt would grow her relationship, and since it coincided with traditional values you can’t stand it. Again, so much for women’s rights, it’s not about them doing what they want, it’s about them doing what the movement wants them to do. Bravo to a woman choosing her marriage first and choosing to be a giver, a loving wife. Here is to her husband who supports her no matter what. What a beautiful example of a beautiful relationship. Sheila, you don’t have to be a radical feminist to hate what she’s decided to do, but it helps. 
You don’t even have to be a feminist to support some imaginary “choice” to kill other humans, but again, it helps. 
Fact is, feminists hate men, they hate marriage, and they hate the fact that this beautiful woman has chosen to to strengthen her marriage to her husband.’

First, it takes ALOT of ‘gumption’ to assume that just because you see my comments about articles on someones page, that those names apply to me – or anyone for that matter.

You dont have to be a feminist to believe in the equality of women. I am in a relationship (of almost 13 years) to a wonderful man. He supports whatever I choose to do for a career and whatever I choose as a hobby. I respect and support the same of him.

If I did have the body that would allow me to be a Victorias Secret model, he would be supportive. He would not be ‘jealous’  that other men looked at me. And after discussing this with him, I got the impression that he would be proud that I had such a lucrative career.

Women CAN be their own person, with their own thoughts and actions, even in the midst of a relationship. And believing this, doesnt make you a feminist. A truly beautiful relationship takes into account the equality of both partners, and the support they provide to each other. A truly beautiful relationship doesnt even need both people in it to be ‘parrots’  of each other. They can disagree with each other and not be offended.

Who says I cant stand that she choose some sort of traditional values decision? I address what I DO question near the end of this post.

As for the comment that called me a killer…..well, let me address this in this way: I got pregnant while still in high school. Ive been pregnant since. I have never had an abortion. Furthermore, Ive never told anyone to get an abortion. In fact, Ive never killed anyone. I grieved when I miscarried multiple times – even the times I had no clue I was pregnant when I miscarried. So please explain to me how Im a ‘killer’.

I do not hate men. If I did, I wouldnt have dated and/or married one. And I dont hate marriage. Ive been married. Just because I dont think marriage is a necessity, doesnt suggest hatred. It merely implies an observation.

Do you know what responses like that is? Its a form of misogyny. How much do you have to hate women to make assumptions like this person did about me?

And…..If youre still reading, THIS is why I questioned why this model quit.

It is quite telling that Busutti is quoted saying:

Bisutti’s decision to leave the lingerie company was also spurred on by an encounter with her 8-year-old cousin.

“I was doing my makeup in the mirror one day and she was watching me,” Bisutti said.  “She looked at me and was like, ‘You know, I think I want to stop eating so I can look like you.’”

“It just broke my heart because she looks up to me and I didn’t want to be that type of person that she thought she had to do that to be beautiful,” she said.  “Thousands of girls that think that being beautiful is an outer issue and really it’s a heart issue.”

Quite honestly, this would have been such a teachable moment for this cousin….as well as for girls everywhere.

This model could have used this comment to EDUCATE her cousin that eating healthy and exercise is how you accomplish these goals. She could have come out publicy and gained SOOOO much press on this issue.

Instead, she turned this into a ‘modeling is UnChristian’  stance, which delegitimizes the discussion altogether.

And for those who stand by the modesty/wholesome-ness argument, have you seen what she is wearing in this interview? And no, I dont think there is anything wrong with what shes wearing, but that dress and those super-size high inch heels (what are they like 4-5 inches?) dont scream modest and wholesome to me.

A couple of weeks ago, I blogged about the health care mandate regarding womens health care and the Catholic church. (https://sheilafaulstich.wordpress.com/2012/01/22/womens-health-care-gets-a-win-and-so-does-the-white-house/#comment-575)

I called this a WIN for the Obama administration as well as for the White House. And I still support this mandate.

And then last night, I was online and read this article (http://www.newsmax.com/Newsfront/obama-catholics-contraception-mandate/2012/02/07/id/428695)

So now the administration may cave to the Bishops? I fail to see how providing womens health services disrespects the faithful.

If anything, what I read this morning is disrespectful.

Local Cardinal-designate, Edwin OBrien flat out said that the local Archdiocese wont comply, even if they have to drop health insurance for employees. (http://www.wbaltv.com/news/30404284/detail.html) Thats 3500 employees that will be without health insurance.

As one of my facebook friends put it: ‘Catholic Church, Way to share the love by threatening to take away health insurance from your employees. Very Christ-like’.

It appears that at least this diocese is throwing a tantrum. Rather than provide women with these services, they would rather cut off 3500 people from health care altogether. Ya know, cuz that will certainly help out somehow.

There is already an exemption for Roman Catholic churches who employ Roman Catholics. Buuuutttt……

Did you know that polls show that 58% of Catholics support the mandate? And if you only count Catholic women, that percentage raises up to 62%. (http://publicreligion.org/research/2012/02/january-tracking-poll-2012/) And depending on the poll you read, the percentage of Catholics who use birth control ranges from anywhere from 77%-95%.

So why the outrage?

It appears that the Catholic church is still trying to control women and what they do with their bodies and their health care. And while this is nothing new, you would think by now that an organization ran by men would learn to back off. It is obvious just by looking at the percentages and speaking with other Catholic women that they are failing miserably in this attempt.

Is the church afraid that their Catholic employees will use birth control? Or are they afraid that they already do use it and will just use this mandate to get it thru their employee health plans?

 

If you look at the comments on my prior blog post on this topic, someone (presumably a man by his avatar) posted that 54% of Catholics voted for Obama in 2008, and now they are angry with him for this action. I find this laughable. Yes, laughable.

If you are a Catholic and voted for Obama in 08, then you werent exactly voting your conscience to begin with….so why be mad now? He was pro-choice when he was a Senator. Why the sudden disapproval?

It seems to me that you got what you asked for. Dont get mad at Obama when you knew all along that his politics didnt agree with yours.

Hissy fits seem to be the norm in this argument. There are calls to close Catholic hospitals and other assorted Catholic charities over this. How does this help ANYONE?

 

The best quote Ive seen is this: Eating pork is legal. Does that threaten the religious “rights” of Orthodox Jews?

 

 

 

Its not often that I post two posts about intolerance on one day. This one is about religious intolerance….or rather, intolerance against the non-religious.

FIRST-THE FACTS…..

You see, a young teenage student in Rhode Island saw a religious prayer banner in her high school auditorium. And it wasnt just religious, it was Christian. (Only specifying because Im sure there are those of other faiths/denominations in this town)

Here is the banner in question:

Text of what the prayer banner says:

Our Heavenly Father,
Grant us each day the desire to do our best,
To grow mentally and morally as well as physically,
To be kind and helpful to our classmates and teachers,
To be honest with ourselves as well as with others,
Help us to be good sports and smile when we lose as well as when we win,
Teach us the value of true friendship,
Help us always to conduct ourselves so as to bring credit to Cranston High School West.
Amen

I think we all would agree that the banner is, in fact, highly Christian in nature. However, this young lady is a non-believer and thought that displaying this banner in a prominent place in her school auditorium was in-the-least excluding those who werent of like mind.

So, she decided to do something about it. She created a facebook page to rally support for her cause. And so it began…..a year and a half of threats and insults.

There were heated meetings of the school board and then the ACLU picked up the case against the Cranston School District.

Yesterday the courts ruled that the banner should be removed. See 40 page decison:  http://news.providencejournal.com/breaking-news/2012/01/11/ahlquist_decision_011112.pdf (examples of what occurred at the school board meetings are made within this 40 page decision)

After the courts decision, Mayor Chafee put in his two cents and surprisingly agreed with the courts decision.

AND THEN IT GOT ‘INTERESTING’

You see, somewhere along the line, the defenders of this prayer banner forgot the words contained on it. Specifically the ones that said

  • To grow mentally and morally as well as physically
  • To be kind and helpful to our classmates and teachers
  • Help us to be good sports and smile when we lose as well as when we win
  • Help us always to conduct ourselves so as to bring credit to Cranston High School West.

In what world do threats of violence and hateful attacks fit in with those words?

Or, if youre really inquisitive you could head on over and look at some of the following links-

See article:  http://cranston.patch.com/articles/ahlquist-fight-over-mural-despite-harrassment-threats-worth-it  Quote:  Ahlquist today was dubbed “an evil little thing,” a “clapping seal” and a “pawn star” on WPRO today by state Rep. Peter Polombo. (I have to wonder how an elected official describes a constituent in this manner.)

The courts decision led to online threats, not only from strangers, but from those in her own community and school.

See:  http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2085964/School-ordered-remove-religious-banner-tells-pupils-kind.html?ito=feeds-newsxml

See: (Warning-graphic language) http://jesusfetusfajitafishsticks.blogspot.com/2012/01/ahlquist-screenshots-if-by-christian.html

Lets get real now people. I dont personally care what you believe in, or dont believe in. Thats not my business. But when a court says that you need to remove something religious from a public building because it violates the Constitution, you probably should do it.

Theres this:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/First_Amendment_to_the_United_States_Constitution

Quote:  I contemplate with sovereign reverence that act of the whole American people which declared that their legislature should ‘make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof,’ thus building a wall of separation between Church & State.” Jefferson reflected his frequent speaking theme that the government is not to interfere with religion.

CYBER BULLYING INVESTIGATED

Let me wrap this post up with where it currently stands. The police and school officials are now investigating threats of violence against this student. Apparently someone posted her home address, and there are horrible threats (as seen in above links) against her personal safety.

Personally, I dont care if I agree or disagree with someone, I will NEVER threaten someone with violence. And those who call themselves Christians making these threats against this teenager (especially those who are adults) should be ashamed.

http://www.rifuture.org/girl-at-the-center-of-the-cranston-prayer-banner-case-targeted-by-cyber-bullies.html

http://cranston.patch.com/articles/police-school-officials-investigating-online-prayer-case-reaction-for-cyberbullying

One of the blogs I follow has recently been posting these 30 Days of Truth writing prompts. (See list here: http://hope.gr/30-days-of-truth/ ) I thought, what a great idea!

What do you think of religion? Or what do you think of politics?

I took a break yesterday from this series in order to address something else here on my blog. And in doing so, Im one day behind on this series, but Im choosing not to skip any days even if I miss posting here and there.

Im sort of glad that I did because there is something I want to address in todays topic, that some of you may ‘take the wrong way’ – Some of you may even make assumptions based on what this post is addressing. And some of you may not even identify with what Im posting about because you have been ‘brainwashed’ into this type of thinking.

Im going to post something that I know that you wont like….

What do I think about religion? Where does one even begin?

To some religion is exhilarating, uplifting, wonderful. To others it can be judgemental or tiresome. Its one of those things where not everyone will agree. Even those with similar beliefs will not agree on alot of things.

I was raised in a Christian church. I went to Sunday School. I even went to a summer Bible camp. I was raised to think Christians were full of love and stuff like that. I was raised to think that Christians werent supposed to judge other people.

Everyday I see more and more that *most* Christians do not practice what they preach.

It upsets me that among the various types of friends I have, some of the nicest people get treated like crap just because they dont believe what someone else believes. So many of my friends do happen to be varying denominations of Christians (ie Catholics, Baptists, Methodists etc) And they all claim to be this all-loving type of person….

Ill just start this rant off with something I think EVERYONE will agree about……and I only have to say 3 words and you will know EXACTLY where Im going with this. WESTBORO BAPTIST CHURCH.

Its sorta crazy that so many Christians will call these people insane, crazy etc, when they are just as guilty of doing similar things. They just dont picket funerals….They just dont hold up hatefilled signs….They ‘hide’ their crazy.

And the crazy gets worse when it comes to how Christians treat and talk to those who dont believe.

You see, last week columnist, author, speaker and atheist Christopher Hitchens passed away after a battle with cancer. Most people I know have never read anything hes written because Christians are instructed to not read, listen etc to anything an atheist would say. But yet, the minute Hitch died, I saw a thousands of people posting about how he deserved to die, that his lack of faith killed him, and the best reactions came from a hashtag #godisnotgreat (which is the title to one of his books) Many, many, many posts from Christians claimed that whoever made up this hashtag should die.

Youre more than happy to read the ‘best of’ reactions posted here:  http://www.buzzfeed.com/mjs538/25-dumbest-reactions-to-godisnotgreat Some of you MAY be appalled at this. But some may actually agree with these people. To those who agree with what those posts say, I dont want to hear your excuses. You are sick.

Because I have friends who are atheists, and yes, I do call them my friends…..I see alot of discussion about this hypocrisy.

However, upon further review, and after MUCH discussion, I have begun to realize that hate is what you get when it comes to being someone of a different faith or if someone has no faith at all. In fact, if you have no faith, you are shunned by those with faith.

Do not be yoked together with unbelievers. For what do righteousness and wickedness have in common? Or what fellowship can light have with darkness? (http://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=2+Corinthians+6%3A14&version=NIV)

And, just to change it up a little…..Im sure by now youve heard about this Tim Tebow guy. Hes a quarterback in the NFL. One of those ‘in your face’ religious types. And while hes got every right to do and say whatever he wants….even believers are a little sick of it. There are running jokes all over the internet about if his team loses, that god must not love him anymore, and SNL even had a skit with jesus telling him to back off a bit….but Bill Maher tweeted his own take and has been ripped to shreds.

Heres the tweet that has many in a tizzy

The above tweet was posted December 24, 2011. But yet, NOT one person had ANYTHING to say about this little gem (warning-language)

I guess because most national media outlets dont watch Bill Maher, they let this just slip on by….No national media story went out about this, unlike some random tweet posted Christmas Eve.

And Im quite shocked that my republican friends, who are STILL up in arms about the Bill Mayer tweet, have nothing to say about the above linked youtube video. Because even tho it starts out as an ‘attack’ on Tebow, it literally shreds apart some of those running for the gop nomination for president.

Im not saying you gotta agree with Bill Maher. I disagree with some of what hes said. But lets stop acting like you are better than him.

The reason I chose these examples, is that when you post certain things online, like on twitter, on on your own blog, you will get responses from people you dont know and dont follow.

And its crazy sometimes what you get replied on. Its crazy the assumptions people make about you after seeing ONE random tweet in a hashtag search. And they DO judge you based on that one tweet.

Ive been called everything. Some names I wouldnt call my worst enemy. Many assume Im some liberal nut job. Many assume that Im some redneck. Many assume things about my beliefs.

And while looking thru some of the replies Ive received, I click on their profiles to see what? They are Christians. Some are even leaders of various churches, youth groups, etc.

Im sure that many people (and even those who do know me) will make some sort of assumption based on this blog post.

But, it makes me literally sick to my stomach to see comments from people who arent supposed to be judging others. If you are a Christian, why not take that step out and be nice to those you disagree with? Instead of replying with profanity, threats and other assorted vile, why not take time out of your life to simply ask why someone thinks the way they do? You MIGHT even find out that the other person is a great person…..they just dont agree with you. (And quite honestly, who needs a yes man?)

You arent going to ‘win someone over’ by calling someone names and telling them you wish they were dead, etc. Havent your ever heard that you win more people over with honey?

Next Page »