Posts tagged ‘politics’
Why is it that people who put on such a show of high moral character and fine virtues are usually the dirtiest fighters, the biggest bullies, and the first to whine and cry when something might possibly be a little less than fair? Hypocrisy. That’s why. And I hate it. To me it’s one of the REAL 7 Deadly Sins.
Hypocrisy: noun- a pretense of having a virtuous character, moral or religious beliefs or principles, etc., that one does not really possess.
I watch several different sports. I have a passion for Formula One racing, MMA and boxing. I’ve noticed parallels between sports, religion and politics.
While I love these sports, I do watch them differently than my husband does. I get interested in different players or drivers or fighters while he is more interested in other things that are beyond my poor female brain (JK!). I’m explaining how I watch them because I think that’s how I’ve noticed this thing about hypocrisy.
Here’s an example from boxing awhile ago: Mayorga is a trash talking guy who has little skill. He goes in there wildly. Mosely is a fighter who has real skill. He doesn’t talk trash.
Now things happen in boxing. Each guy is there trying to knock the other guy out. Sometimes they knock heads together. Sometimes punches go where they aren’t supposed to, like the back of the head, or anywhere on the back side of the boxer.
I watched 12 rounds of boxing between these two. Mosely never once complained to the referee when Mayorga punched him in the back of the head (obviously on purpose. It’s called a Rabbit Punch by the way). But every time Mayorga’s wild style made one of Mosely’s punches go a bit astray, Mayorga would look to the ref and whine and cry about it. By the way, Mosely knocked out Mayorga in the last second of the final round. It was sweet…
I’ve been debating with myself for several days about whether I should write this post. Since some others bloggers have dealt with this question quite effectively recently, I haven’t felt that I would have anything useful to add to the conversation. I changed my mind when I read Brian’s recent heart wrenching post. For the religious folks who wonder why nonbelievers care at all about religion and why we can’t we just respect believers’ beliefs and leave them alone, I offer the following thoughts.
The first problem that I have with religious beliefs is that, as Greta Christina pointed out recently, acting on the basis of false beliefs can lead to ill-conceived, even harmful, behavior and decisions. Take, for example, cases of snake handlers who die from snakebites, or Jehovah’s Witnesses who die for want of blood transfusions – both of which have occurred in the USA within the past several months. One may argue that such beliefs are misunderstandings of scriptural injunctions, but to so argue merely cedes my point. Yes, I agree, such beliefs are misunderstandings, but those misunderstandings are founded upon what believers have read in scriptures and they are founded upon traditions that have been passed down to successive generations for millennia. Quite simply, the misunderstood scriptures would not be taken so seriously, and the errant teachings that have been transmitted through the ages would not exist, were it not for the religious contexts that gave birth to them and continue to nourish them…
Around a year and a half ago I wrote an article, published elsewhere, on the theocratic inclinations of contemporary evangelical Christians. I continue to recognize that these imposing proclivities are usually theoretical and manifest themselves only on special circumstances, such as in conservative pulpits, political surveys, and in the ballot box. However, as I re-watch that notorious video clip of Mike Huckabee scaring the hell out of every religious (and areligious) minority in America, I can only sit in amazement of the frightening hold the icon (or idol) of the Bible has on these people. For your reading pleasure, I have re-published that original article, with a few edits, below:
I had so many great headlines for this story. If it was not so long, ambiguous or condescending I would have stuck with: “Evangelicals Chose God over Democracy in American Politics”. I admit, the title I selected is still a little harsh and maybe a little misleading but it is getting my opinion across about a poll released by the Pew Research Center back in August 2006. Polls on religion and politics in the United States are always interesting. Specifically, my “favourite” question is the one concerning the influence the Bible should have on United States laws versus the will of the American people. The exact question reads, “Which should be the more important influence on the laws of the United States – Should it be the Bible or should it be the will of the American people, even when it conflicts with the Bible?”…
Can you smell that? Smells good doesn’t it? Yes, it’s the political season in the States, and there could be nothing sweeter! I understand that some of you here may not be as much as a “political junkie” as me, but don’t worry, I’m not going to get into the nitty-gritty of everything. Although if I may…Obama ’08!! Okay, it’s out of my system, let us continue.
Now as sweet as the political season smells, at times it can be a bit too bitter; a little hard to swallow; downright sickening. Why? Well, the natural reasons of course (mud-slinging ads, shady practices, and my favorite: never answering a question directly!) Personally though, I am disgusted at the way contemporary politics bundles groups of people together as if they are a prize to be won. Case-in-point: the “evangelical” vote.
Pundits talk about “winning the votes” of evangelicals all the time. Sadly, when they say this they are making gross assumptions about Christianity – in particular, that all Christians think and believe the same way. They then “target” these individuals like they are some kind of wild game. What a shame (not to mention insulting)…
I have a confession to make. I am a red-blooded, heterosexual male. Like most men, I love attractive women. I have never had what I would consider homosexual temptations, or any other attractions to the male gender. I know only a couple openly gay men, I don’t understand the lifestyle or mindset of the gay man, and I cannot conceive of how any man could be sexually attracted to any other man. I just don’t get it.
But that is not my confession.
My confession is, even when I was a Christian, I did not condemn homosexuality. Yes, I knew what the Bible said, and I remember how all my former pastors told us to ‘hate the sin but love the sinner’. I know that by and large Christians view homosexuality as major sin, and I was expected to agree with God on this issue and condemn it just as he did. But the truth of it is, I just never cared about that. I never told any of my fellow Christians at the time, but I am now telling you, the random internet surfer. As a Christian, homosexuality just never bothered me. Nope. Never did.
I looked at it like this. Jesus, when asked by a lawyer, basically summed up the entirety of the Mosaic Law into two basic, simple commands…
It is the evening of September 11th, 2007 – the sixth anniversary of the terrorist attacks on American soil by Islamic Jihadists. I am driving home from work, listening to the ceremonies and tributes paid on NPR. I am nearly home. Just as I round the corner to an adjacent street, I see this new message on the church marquee:
You are reading that marquee right. The good folks at Skyline Baptist Church have seen fit to place this threat of eternal fire to the heathen and the promise of eternal paradise to the saint to commemorate this anniversary…