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Posts tagged ‘human-rights’

Was Jesus a Conservative?

(Again, I was looking for something in my files, and I came across one of those articles I kinda wish I had written. I am not terribly thrilled by some of the name-calling the original author get into, but I certainly can understand the anger….

I am also afraid that the author no longer seems to have an active blog. I think there really needs to be more thinking Christians blogging…
Ninure da Hippie)

Conservatives (Republicans and their predecessors) have fought among other things:

* child labor laws
* the forty-hour work week
* unions
* protection of the air and water
* overtime pay
* Medicare
* Social Security
* consumer protections
* national heath care
* racial equality
* equality for women
* inter-racial marriage

Conservatism is about preserving or returning to the conditions of an earlier time, it is, by definition, anti change. Ultimately, unless it goes to it’s extreme expression, fascism, it’s doomed to failure because, simply, change happens. Or the house of cards built on the
exploitation of the poor and working class tumbles. Conservativism is anti-American, running contrary to the Founding Fathers battles against the conservatives (Torys) of their day. If conservativism had prevailed in the late 1700s, there would be no United States of
America today.

In contrast this to conservatism, we read of Jesus:

And Jesus went forth, and saw a great multitude, and was moved with compassion toward them, and he healed their sick. (Matt. 14:14).

Jesus stood against the conservatives of His day, the Republicans of His time, the Pharisees, the Sadducees, the Herodians, and they released their “Republican attack dogs” on Him and led Him to His death.

The word “Christian,” means “like Christ.” Which is something we should endeavor to become. Religious conservatives are the anti-thesis, the opposite, the “anti-Christ” and stand against His compassion and love for the poor, widows and orphans expressed so many times in the Scriptures.

The apostles, in their letter to Paul, expressed concern that the poor were taken care of, contrarily, Ronald Reagan used to express concerns not to provide a perception of a safety net.

The so-called “Religious Right” and other conservative anti-Christian movements are no more Christian than their father the devil. One cannot Scripturally claim to be conservative and Christian for “Conservative CHristian” is an oxymoron, they are self contradictory.
Indeed, the “Conservative Christian” movement is a part of the “great falling away.” (2 Thes. 2:3)

Terrell D Lewis
Fighting the Riech Wing Conspiracy

Rant: Christian American Quiz

Christian American Quiz

Please answer the following Questions:

1) Which is the only country in the world to have dropped bombs on over twenty different countries since 1945?

2) Which is the only country to have used nuclear weapons?

3) Which country was responsible for a car bomb which killed 80 civilians in Beirut in 1985, in a botched assassination attempt, thereby making it the most lethal terrorist bombing in modern Middle East history?

4) Which country’s illegal bombing of Libya in 1986 was described by the UN Legal Committee as a “classic case” of terrorism?

5) Which country rejected the order of the International Court of Justice (ICJ) to terminate its “unlawful use of force” against Nicaragua in 1986, and then vetoed a UN Security Council resolution calling on all states to observe international law?

6) Which country was accused by a UN-sponsored truth commission of providing”direct and indirect support” for “acts of genocide” against the Mayan Indians in Guatemala during the 1980s?

7) Which country unilaterally withdrew from the Anti-Ballistic Missile (ABM) Treaty in December 2001?

8) Which country renounced the efforts to negotiate a verification process for the Biological Weapons Convention and brought an international conference on the matter to a halt in July 2001?

9) Which country prevented the United Nations from curbing the gun trade at a small arms conference in July 2001?

10) Aside from Somalia, which is the only other country in the world to have refused to ratify the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child?

11) Which is the only Western country which allows the death penalty to be applied to children?

12) Which is the only G7 country to have refused to sign the 1997 Mine Ban Treaty, forbidding the use of landmines?

13) Which is the only G7 country to have voted against the creation of the International Criminal Court (ICC) in 1998?

14) Which was the only other country to join with Israel in opposing a 1987 General Assembly resolution condemning international terrorism?

15) Which country refuses to fully pay its debts to the United Nations yet reserves its right to veto United Nations resolutions?

Answer to all 15 questions: The United States of America.

Do you call these actions “Christian”!!!!!

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A witness in Galilee (via The Christian Science Monitor)

A witness in Galilee (via The Christian Science Monitor)

Longtime Monitor photographer Gordon N. Converse took this image for a photo portfolio titled ‘The Land of Jesus’ in 1978.(Gordon N. Converse/The Christian Science Monitor) In Jerusalem, where the conflict between Jews and Muslims dominates everything from religion to politics, it can sometimes…

Childrens’ Day?

(Note: I’ve hit my files again with an article I read back in 2007. I’d make a terrible parent, but nothing gets me as mad as the awful way this so-called Christian nation treats children. Whether it is to ignore their needs – for food, housing, education, or healthcare – as a country, or adults abusing them physically, verbally, or sexually. – Ninure da Hippie)

We habe Mother’s Day, and Father’s Dat…I think the cars companies are trying to get Grandparents’ Day, Uncles’ Day and Aunts Day too.

But as a fromer child, I think their ought to be a Children’s Day.

Not a day to give some kids even more presents, but a day to allow those who care to commit to protecting children from harm. A day to cmmit to seeing that children might receive all that they need, eevn of their parents are stupid and/or lazy.

It makes me angry to read of adults coming up with excuses to treat children in ways that they would not tolerate for themselves for five seconds.

It is in that spirit that I share this article with you today.

Sightings  5/3/07

Christian Discipline of Children
— Bonnie J. Miller-McLemore

At Remnant Fellowship Church in Brentwood, Tennessee, only a short distance from my home, religious leader Gwen Shamblin encourages parents to spank their children, describing corporal punishment as a “time-tested, ancient teaching of the Bible” necessary to shaping adherence to God’s authority.  According to the February 7, 2007, issue of the Tennessean (and here was one time when I really hoped the reporting was unreliable), parents who bring children to the nursery have foot-long glue gun sticks in their diaper bags for physically disciplining them.  These details hit the news because eight-year-old Josef Smith died in October 2003, and his parents, members of Remnant Fellowship, were finally facing trial for whipping, confining, and beating him to death.

Although later in February the parents were sentenced to life plus thirty years, the debate about Christian discipline is far from resolved.  On the one hand, social scientists such as Alice Miller indicted Christianity in the 1970’s and 1980’s for perpetuating parental abuse.  Initially Miller simply argued that narcissistic parents use children to meet parental needs — an iniquity visited on following generations, as emotionally deprived children become parents who use their children to get the affirmation missing in their own childhood.  Over time, however, Miller became more strident, and eventually accused Christians of perpetuating a “poisonous pedagogy” of cruel mental and physical techniques designed to render children obedient, described in horrifying detail in childrearing manuals.  Meanwhile, Philip Greven and others found ample historical and psychological evidence to argue that such discipline can indeed be quite hazardous to children’s health.

On the other hand, in recent years some sociologists, such as John Bartkowski and Brad Wilcox, have tried to modify such assessments.  Empirical research, they say, documents increased affection and paternal involvement as positively related to an emphasis on children’s submission to parental authority and use of corporal punishment.  There is even initial evidence that such punishment does not have adverse emotional or behavioral repercussions, an outcome that may result from its place within a broader set of positive parenting behaviors.

More than anything, all this politically loaded research suggests that Christians of all stripes should be wary of extreme claims on both sides.  Subtle agendas shape social science facts and have serious social implications.  Christians must take their troubled disciplinary history seriously, admitting the harm done in Christianity’s name, and yet also question sweeping accusations that Christianity itself is inherently abusive.  News about Josef Smith’s death powerfully reminds us just how hazardous careless use of Christian proclamation can be, especially as it impacts those least able to protect themselves and most dependent on adult benevolence.  Fervent promotion of doctrines about sin, obedience, and bending the will to God have had and can have devastating consequences.

At the same time, seeing children as sinful does not de facto lead to their harsh punishment.  It can, in fact, have an inverse affect of assuring respect for their full humanity and agency.  Many classic theologians commonly associated with ideas about children as depraved, such as Augustine and Calvin, did not condone corporal punishment, offered nuanced views of children’s spiritual capacities, and even found such doctrines cause for greater compassion for all children, especially poor children.

Scriptural accounts of Jesus’ ministry actually set a high disciplinary standard.  Nowhere does Jesus advocate physical punishment.  Instead, he goes out of his way to heal children, says they embody the kingdom, and threatens eternal damnation to anyone who would harm their faith.  “Discipline” and “disciples” share the same root.  The disciples follow Jesus not because he stands over them as commander in chief, but because he aligns himself with them and elicits their love, trust, and admiration.  Perhaps influenced by Christianity more than she realizes, Miller herself concludes: “We do not need to be told whether to be strict or permissive with our children.  What we do need is to have respect for their needs … as well as for our own.”  For Christians, discipline means fostering conditions that induce a desire to love God and seek the good of others.

Whether Remnant Fellowship Church (or any congregation that talks openly about how to discipline children) encourages this kind of discipline or rather condones abuse is still up for debate.  But when it comes to corporal punishment, there is ongoing need for serious caution, and for the work of a practical theology that studies not so much the truth of doctrine but how doctrine gets lived out in daily life.

For children in particular, what people believe about Jesus or God — whether God demands obedience or offers love — matters.

“Child’s Death Renews Scrutiny of Local Church,” by Anita Wadhwani and Heather Donahoe, The Tennessean (February 7, 2007).

Bonnie J. Miller-McLemore is E. Rhodes and Leona B. Carpenter Professor of Pastoral Theology and Counseling at Vanderbilt University, and author of Let the Children Come: Reimagining Childhood from a Christian Perspective (Jossey-Bass, 2003) and In the Midst of Chaos: Care of Children as Spiritual Practice (Jossey-Bass, 2006).

The current Religion and Culture Web Forum features “From Altered States to Altered Categories (and Back Again): Academic Method and the Human Potential Movement” by Jeffrey J. Kripal.  To read this article, please visit: http://marty-center.uchicago.edu/webforum/index.shtml.


Sightings comes from the Martin Marty Center at the University of Chicago Divinity School.

Submissions policy
Sightings welcomes submissions of 500 to 750 words in length that seek to illuminate and interpret the forces of faith in a pluralist society. Previous columns give a good indication of the topical range and tone for acceptable essays. The editor also encourages new approaches to issues related to religion and public life.

Columns may be quoted or republished in full, with attribution to the author of the column, Sightings, and the Martin Marty Center at the University of Chicago Divinity School.
Contact information
Please send all inquiries, comments, and submissions to Jeremy Biles, editor of Sightings, at sightings-admin@listhost.uchicago.edu. Subscribe, unsubscribe, or manage your subscription at the Sightings subscription page.

There are those who rebel against the light, who are not acquainted with its ways, and do not stay in its paths. The murderer rises at dusk to kill the poor and needy, and in the night is like a thief.
– Job 24:13-14

To be a follower of Jesus means in the first place to enter by compassion into his experience, with all that it expresses of the divine and of the human. And it means in the second place to enter with him into the suffering and the hope of all human persons, making common cause with them as he does, and seeking out as he does the places of his predilection among the poor and despised and oppressed.
– Monika K. Hellwig
from Jesus: The Compassion of God (The Liturgical Press, 1983)


“I trace the rainbow through the rain and see the promise is not in vain.”</center?

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The Religious/Political Right’s Vocabulary & Phrase Book-Volume Two

I was looking for something in my files, and once again came across one of those articles that hardly seem dated.

Think about that for a minute.

The right doesn’t seem to learn that their “double speak” isn’t very productive – unless their goal is really the destruction of America… – Ninure da Hippie

The Religious/Political Right’s Vocabulary & Phrase Book-Volume Two

April 26, 2006

By Clint Willis

“Racially balanced” as in “The Republican Party is very racially

This phrase is used during hurriedly arranged photo ops after someone
of prominence has made the insinuation to the mainstream media that the
Religious/Political right is composed of mostly rich white men.

Someone is bound to utter this phrase just as you notice that all of
the women, blacks and hispanics in the group have suddenly been pushed
up into the front row smiling proudly, not realizing that behind them
the next solid three rows are the white guys grinning for the camera
because they know that they’re really the ones in charge.

“Judeo-Christian Values”
Note Judeo always comes first.

This phrase is used often and loudly when the right-wing Christian
section is emphasizing that they have generously included Jews in their
outrage about abortion, gay rights, or tax breaks for major

Usually the next day the more extreme fundamentalists of the group give
a sermon to their followers stressing that while they love their Jewish
brothers (well, maybe just enough to get the election swung in their
favor), they must still realize that in order for Jews to get into
their heaven, they still must first accept Jesus Christ as their

Sort of how they feel about their private Golf Clubs.

“Pro-business liberal”

This one threw me the first time I saw it in print, because by rights,
according to all good conservatives, there is no such thing as a
“pro-business liberal”.

Apparently this phrase is employed to throw blame at liberal democrats
with their liberal businesses joining the liberal wing of the
Republican Party and ruining everything.

In other words, just throw the word “liberal” on anything to make it
sound bad or to assign or distract blame.

“God, America, and the flag”,

is the new holy trinity, replacing “Baseball, mom, and apple pie”.

You must worship all three equally or be branded a traitorous liberal
unchristian deviant.

“Budget Surplus”

is a phrase never used in mixed company (i.e. Republicans with

The budget surplus is what the Republican Congress proudly claimed as
theirs, not President Clinton’s, from the steps of the Capitol

In the late 90s the budget surplus was the direct result of their
“Contract with America”… well that is until GW spent it all at

Now the political right wing would rather we didn’t mention it, and if
we do, they claim it didn’t really exist anyway and was just on

“Your facts are erroneous”

is a phrase used most often when they know Democrats are speaking the
truth, but they haven’t found time to “Google or Yahoo” something
opposing from a right-wing slanted website to refute it yet.

“Knee-jerk reaction”

translates to “They’ve intelligently reacted to something important
before we did, causing us embarrassment, so we’ll dismiss it as nothing
in order to distract the public.”

The press is currently having a knee-jerk reaction to rising gas prices
at the pump, but don’t worry… soon it’ll be “old news”.

Currently President Bush is stressing that we should leave prices as
they are (no matter how high they go) and instead use conservation and
alternate fuels.

Thus we preserve “big oil’s” profit line; which should cause another
“knee jerk” reaction from the voting public.

“Some of my best friends are gay”

They live about three miles from me.

My sister’s hairdresser’s maid introduced me to a plumber who lives
next door to them, but I can’t remember his name.

He says they’re nice people.

“This is all just old news!”

translates to “The public knows this is a problem we haven’t even come
close to solving yet, even though we’ve had plenty of time to look into
it, so we’ll just declare it unimportant!”

Example, “New Orleans is old news”

“Impeding Free speech”

translates to “Not permitting right-wing political or religious
propaganda to be prominently displayed in public buildings”.

See also:

“Violating the spirit of the First Amendment”

which translates to using the “Free speech amendment” to allow such
things as homosexual pornography, cuss words on the Sopranos,
publishing books criticizing George Bush, Rush Limbaugh, Pat Robertson,
or or or even The Los Angeles Times recently suggesting that Dick
Cheney resign!, or the press’ reporting of several state legislatures
(so far Vermont, California, and Illinois) that have
recently, or are planing to, call for the House of Representitives to
prepare to look into Bush’s impeachment.

“God created dinosaur bones, but not real dinosaurs!”

Sorry, I just had to include this one after I nearly fell out of my
chair laughing when I read it in print.

A religious nut actually asserted that God created the bones, and then
put them into the ground where we could find them, to test our faith
because the actual animals never really existed!.

“I am praying for you!”

Personally I’m disgusted every time George Bush utters this phrase.

He prayed for the space shuttle astronauts safe return,

he prayed for the miners in West Virginia,

and he prayed constantly for the victims of the World Trade Center to
be rescued along with the lives of the victims of the Pentagon.

All he was doing was kissing the asses of the Political/Religious
Right, and gave false and useless comfort to the victim’s families who
believed that his important presidential prayers would somehow be paid
more attention to by God… which they weren’t

“I do not believe in basing American Policy on poll numbers”.

Unless they agree with what George is saying at the moment.

“We are on the side of the political right!”.

Apparently they don’t seem to realize that that means which side of the
aisle they sit on, and not that they’re correct all the time.


The above is from “Jesus Is Not a Republican : The Religious Right’s
War on America” by Clint Willis.

Hippie Rant: Acceptance, Tolerance, Intolerance, and Bigotry

I wrote this for a Blog I used to have on MtSpace.

There were a number of comments I received to things I wrote in that Blog that indicated that some people may know HOW to read, they weren’t able o COMPREHEND WHAT THEY WHERE READING.

I seem to be seeing a lot more from people who seem to have the same problem with understanding that difference between freedom of religion and freedom FROM Christianity.

If ypu know any people like that, feel free to share this with them (just give me due credit). – Ninure da Hippie

Acceptance, Tolerance, Intolerance, and Bigotry

Acceptance: There are peas on my plate. Peas are not my first choice to eat when I am humgry, but I eat them.

Tolerance: There are peas on my plate. I don’t care for peas, I am not that hungry, so I leave them alone.

Intolerance: There are peas on my plate. I HATE peas. I hurl the plate on the floor and jump and down on the peas. I try to file criminal charges against the person who cooked the peas.

Bigotry: There are peas on my plate. Not only do I hate peas, I hate the people who cook them, who grow them, and anyone who likes them. I spend a great deal of my time trying to outlaw peas, and deprive anyone who grows or likes them of their human rights. I proclaim that anyone who has anything to do with peas hates God, abuses children, and is a terrorist.

Some Random (Hippie thots) – reposted from 2006

Just sharing some random thoughts....

If the teachings of the one called Jesus Christ were “common sense” there would be far more remarkable Christians in the world.

But in reality, there is much that us non-sense in His teachings..which means that a true follower must be, in the eyes of the world, a fool.

This may be one reason why when one sees certain preachers speaking on the issues of the day, one rarely hears them quoting Jesus.

Someone told me that there are some 2,000 passages in the Bible that “talk” about the poor and needy, and only six passages that could possibly be interpreted as dealing with homosexuality.

I haven’t figured out how to confirm that 2,000 figure, but a quick search of my New International Version found 177 containing withboth the words “poor and needy”.

Christians who remember their Lord was unjustly and cruelly given the death penalty have a hard time being enthusiastic about imposing the death penalty on others.
– Glen Stassen


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