Dark Christianity
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dogemperor [userpic]
Congressman and minister Emanuel Cleaver opposes marriage amendment

LJ-SEC: (ORIGINALLY POSTED BY [info]jehovahsfitness)

I've said it before, and I'll say it again. We need more like him.


dogemperor [userpic]


Mark Joseph had this to say in response to the Anne Lamott article I posted earlier today:

"I almost fell off of my stationary bike when I read this piece by author Anne Lamott. I'm no theologian, but this sure doesn't sound very Christian or very tolerant. I often hear how intolerant the religious right is, but if this is any indication, the religious left packs a mean punch too."

And Jane Smiley replies.

"When Christians talk about secular Americans being "tolerant" of Christian beliefs, they are misusing the word. What conservative Christians want is not toleration, but social control. Toleration takes place between two people who know one another, and is a feature of personal relationships. Social control is about who gets the power to dictate policy and law."

dogemperor [userpic]
Homosexuality and Christianity


First, I apologize if this type of post isn't allowed, but I thought it may be acceptable so I figured, why not? I realize it may not fit with this community, and I originally wasn't going to post here, but I was encouraged to do so in [info]christianleft by someone who thought members of this community might be receptive.

Anyway, I founded and maintain [info]gsa_lj, and in an attempt to increase membership in under-represented groups, I've decided to try and get more religious people to join. Unfortunately, many members are pretty militantly athiest, which is fine, but I hate to see people hostile to religion because all they've seen is anti-gay crap spewed. Admittedly, much of it is anti-Christian bias.

So, check the community out. You may like it. We have Christian members, but I'm trying to increase those ranks with tolerant, open-minded, and gay friendly folks. I want people to realize that religion and God doesn't equal intolerance, hate, or homophobia.

Again, I apologize if this type of post isn't allowed.


Founder & Maintainer, [info]gsa_lj

dogemperor [userpic]
Only Pictures?

LJ-SEC: (ORIGINALLY POSTED BY [info]cheap_laugh)

Only Pictures?

a cogent interview with two American cartoonist: Joe Sacco and Art Spiegleman, the creator of MAUS, a graphic novel about WWII with the nazi'sportrayed as cats, and Jews as Trapped mice. It caused quite an uproar when first published.

Read and reflect.

dogemperor [userpic]

LJ-SEC: (ORIGINALLY POSTED BY [info]wyldraven)

Dr. Teresa Whitehurst on The Intolerance of Christian Conservatives

Excerpt )

Dr. Whitehurst is a well known Christian author and clinical psychologist. Her book Jesus on Parenting refutes the popular "conservative" parenting values based on "spare the rod, spoil the child" and instead approaches parenting from the loving viewpoint of Christ's own words. We need more like her.

dogemperor [userpic]
Something from academia

LJ-SEC: (ORIGINALLY POSTED BY [info]charlayne)

There are times my education comes in handy. This last couple of weeks my English history professor has had us reading John Locke's "A Letter Concerning Toleration, 1689". I've been going over it and it has some very valuable things to say about the separation of church and state (though not in those words, he's talking about government, princes, magistrates, and church; same diff in my opinion...)

If you want to read up, here's the link to it: http://odur.let.rug.nl/~usa/D/1651-1700/locke/ECT/toleraxx.htm)

Locke is prized by many of those who love the "philosophy of American Founders" thing and the quotes you can pull out of this document to use on people who want to say that the Church should run the state (or vice versa) may make their little heads just explode. I recommend letting them read this with a warning to keep duct tape on hand to fix the cranial cavity.

Current Mood: enthralled
dogemperor [userpic]
Santa gets around


The current issue of The Asian Reporter has a story on page 3 about Muslims in Santa Claus costumes volunteering to guard Christian churches this weekend to prevent vandalism and violence in Jakarta. I didn't find the story online, but since I'm not accomplishing anything at work right now, I've typed out part of it.

Muslim Organization will guard churches on Xmas

JAKARTA, Indonesia (AP) -- Cautious Clauses. Indonesians dressed in Santa Claus costumes wave on the street during a Christmas event in Jakarta, Indonesia. The youth wing of Indonesia's largest Islamic organization will deploy uniformed members to guard [Christian] churches over the Christmas and New Year's holidays.

I couldn't find the story online, but I did find this:

Hotel security men with Santa Claus costumes stand guard with a Indonesia police officer in Jakarta, Indonesia, Friday, Dec 23, 2005. Thousands of troops were being deployed to guard Indonesian churches Friday amid warnings that al-Qaida linked militants were planning Christmas terror attacks in the world's most populous Muslim nation. (AP Photo/ Achmad Ibrahim)

The rest of the story...

Wow. Tell that to your Islam-hating Xtian Fundies.

Current Music: Muppets - Noel: Christmas Eve, 1913
dogemperor [userpic]
Thought for the day

LJ-SEC: (ORIGINALLY POSTED BY [info]cheap_laugh)

"Can't you understand that if you take a law like evolution and you make it a crime to teach it in the public schools, tomorrow you can make it a crime to teach it in the private schools, and tomorrow you may make it a crime to read about it, and soon you may ban books and newspapers."
-Henry Drummond. Inherit the Wind.

While the play is based on the Scopes "Monkey Trial" and great dramatic license was taken, the above quote is as relevant today as when the words were written and spoken in the 1960 film. We face a weird combination of McCarthyism and anti-Evolutionary rhetoric from the Right and the Domionistas

The play also asks:
Henry Drummond: "That first day, what do you think it was; 24 hours long?"

Matthew Brady: "The bible says it was a day."

Henry Drummond: "Well, there was no sun out, ah, you know. How do you know how long it was?"

Rhetorical, but perhaps, we can ask such questions of our domionista friends...

Current Mood: thoughtful
dogemperor [userpic]


'Concerned Women for America (CWA) is grateful to God that the Swedish Supreme Court has decided to protect religious freedom and freedom of speech by acquitting a Pentecostal pastor charged with a "hate crime" for criticizing homosexuality from the pulpit.'

dogemperor [userpic]
The power of miracles...

LJ-SEC: (ORIGINALLY POSTED BY [info]dark_rekhet)

....or the danger?

"When You Need a Miracle"

For a bit of background, I have been to a few of Rev. Kostelnik's sermons. Long story short, I had relationship with a man who was a member of this church who also thought I needed saving. It was always a confusing situation. "Pastor Joe", as he likes to be called, is by all accounts a nice man, kind to animals, all that. I wanted so much to like the guy. Unfortunately during his sermons he did what I consider to be no-no's if I'm going to like a person. He claimed to have witnessed miracles, he claimed to have performed miracles, and he did the whole usual thing about other religions. Mentioned something about Christians prayers being closest to God, and that only the Christian god is a living one, etc. As a non-Christian I found this offensive, and as a person with a chronic illness as well, my warning bells went off.

I wonder how many people have been suckered into churches because they have been told that is where they have to be for god to hear them, or that's where they need to be to be healed?

And to add to it, the sister site created by the same people has a few articles that I found to show their Dominist attitudes fairly well.

"America's Innocence Lost"

"Is There a Plague on America?"

And a last one that shows their religious intolerance.

"Religions United in World Peace"

Intolerance like that hurts me deeply. *sigh*

Current Mood: sad
dogemperor [userpic]
Something to keep in mind...

LJ-SEC: (ORIGINALLY POSTED BY [info]scarcrest)

I had a long entry ready to post, put it in my own journal by mistake, copied it to paste here, deleted it from my journal, accidentally hit "copy" again and thus lost it. Just as well: Part of it was me posting something on behalf of a non-member who's now joining in order to post it herself.

But the point: The community info page here says this is a community to look at the malevolent side of Christianity. It also says, very clearly, that this isn't a journal for bashing Christianity as a whole. (If one wants to join a community for discussing the traumas the Christian faith has brought upon oneself, might I recommend [info]exchristians.)

As [info]kitten_goddess pointed out earlier, it's important that, in our fight against the monster of Dominion Theology, we not become the same intolerant ideologues that we're fighting. As [info]neadods points out, the enemy we oppose is also striking out against moderate and liberal Christian groups.

Some people in this community are Christians. Others (myself included) are not. But we have a common enemy. Even if we don't see eye to eye in a theological sense, rampaging against any Christian who walks through the door will only drive away allies in the fight against Dobson and his ilk.

Look at it this way: If a person's diagnosed with cancer, the first course of treatment suggested by an oncologist is probably not going to be "Take him out back and put two bullets in his head." Fundamentalism is a cancer that invades a religion; even if it can't be eradicated, it can be put into remission. We can't stop people from engaging in willful ignorance or stop them from wanting to keep others in the dark with them, but we can mobilize voters to get to the polls and crush their efforts to put their puppets into power.

We can't take away the "Christian Taliban" faction's freedom to believe or to discuss their beliefs; we can, through joining our efforts with moderate to liberal Christians, push them back toward a marginal position over time. Nontheists such as myself, and members of earth-centered religions will likely remain in a minority for the foreseeable future; making alliances with tolerant Christians is our best chance at having any sort of civil rights protection from state-sponsored religion.

Just my two cents' worth.

dogemperor [userpic]
The Darkness In All Of Us

LJ-SEC: (ORIGINALLY POSTED BY [info]kitten_goddess)

Are we really any different from the Dominionists? We decry their intolerance of other faiths, but how tolerant are we of their views? Their ideas? Their lifestyle?

Many of us, especially myself, need to examine our own hearts to see if there is intolerance within.

dogemperor [userpic]
Competing values


Here's an interesting article from UUworld about competing liberal and conservative religious values. Why should the conservatives corner the market on 'family values'?

Like most religious liberals, we Unitarian Universalists imagine ourselves to be nice people. It is those in the Christian Right, we believe, who want to force their moral code on everyone else and use public resources to proselytize for their faith. We, on the other hand, believe in tolerance, free choice, and letting people be what they have to be. What’s so scary about that? If the rank-and-file of organizations like Focus on the Family or the Christian Coalition feel threatened by us, we think, it can only be because they have been duped by their unscrupulous leaders.

Not necessarily.

True, preachers of the Christian Right have said a lot of unfair things about liberals, both religious and political. But conservative Christian fears have not been created ex nihilo. As overstated as those fears may at times become, they have a basis, and we would do well to understand it.

Such a call for understanding, I realize, will sound to some like an invitation to surrender. Won’t opponents see our empathy as a sign of weakness and be encouraged to make even bigger demands on us? If they make to comparable effort to understand and accommodate us, won’t we be drawn into one-sided compromises that slide gradually towards capitulation? In the face of a hard and uncompromising opponent, we seem to have no choice other than to become hard and uncompromising too. Only one strategy seems to make sense: Give them hell.

Talk To Action author Fred Clarkson takes a look at this article and posts his own ideas about it.

dogemperor [userpic]
Daily Kos diaries


Here are a couple of Daily Kos Diaries that are relevant to this community:

A Black Baptist Minister Takes on the Theocrats Writes Rev. Carlton W. Veazey:

"Progressives who think warnings about 'theocracy' are an exaggeration should take a closer look at 'Justice Sunday: Filibustering People of Faith,' Veazy wrote. The event was "beamed into conservative churches across the country: a political rally from a large, comfortable mega-church in Louisville, with a middle-class audience listening with rapt attention to political operatives who self-identify as religious leaders-and at the bottom of the screen, streaming video with the photos, names and phone numbers of targeted U.S. senators. The visual message was clear: the church is dominant over the state and senators should toe the line on eliminating the filibuster and confirming Bush judges or pay the price."


"There is a right way and a wrong way to engage religious voices in the public square. I believe "Justice Sunday" reflects the latter and highlights several disturbing trends... As a Baptist minister for more than 40 years with a profound respect for religious freedom and pluralism, I fear it will get worse. In fact, I think we are teetering on the brink of theocracy and the Christian Right could conceivably use the battle over the judiciary and weakening support for reproductive rights to push us over the edge...."

Fredrick Clarkson, founder of Talk To Action, says that this essay should be read in its entirety, and spread far and wide. I heartily agree. It is people like this- people of faith who see the big picture and understand what is at stake- whom we need to find, engage, and work with to reverse the Dominionist onslaught.

And here's another diary written by a USAF member, who wrote a letter to the Stars and Stripes earlier this week about religious intolerance.

Breaking Free From a Theocratic Upbringing

The writer says that he hasn't gotten any feedback or fallout yet, but he expects that he will.

dogemperor [userpic]
Religious right takes potshot at Christian Alliance


This was to be expected: after the launch of the Christian Alliance for Progress (on the links list at left), the World Net Daily has decided that because they are 'leftist', they're not "Christian" enough.

The Christian Alliance for Progress describes its as "progressive," but its leaders' so-called broad-minded efforts toward tolerance have blinded them to how the Bible instructs us to live.

Finally, the Alliance calls for peace and an end to war, but they cannot understand that the only true peace that man can know comes through a personal relationship with Jesus Christ. He was not a hippie do-gooder, but rather the Son of the Living God who came to Earth to pave the one way to heaven for mankind. To present Him as anything less is an outrage.

Dr. Ed Hindson, renowned theologian and Liberty University professor, writing in the August issue of National Liberty Journal, stated: "If liberals want to debate these issues on biblical grounds, let them go right ahead. Because they will lose, not only the debate, but also any influence they might hope to have among spiritually minded people. They are correct when they insist we do not speak for them, and they certainly don't speak for us. Their new Alliance for Progress will simply result in one more organization in regress."

To the religious right, one has to adhere to every jot and tittle of the Bible (biblical literalism and legalism), as well as their hypocracies. They claim that abortion violates 'thou shalt not kill', yet advocate killing homosexuals, and support the death penalty. Hey, guys, choose. You can't have it both ways.

dogemperor [userpic]
Real Christians and inappropriate evangalism


[info]bradhicks has an interesting post where he talks about his essay series on Christianity as well as inappropriate evangalism. Good reading.

dogemperor [userpic]
Obfuscating Intolerance


This NYT Op-ed talks about the recent inquiry in the USAF Academy religious case:

Obfuscating Intolerance

A Pentagon inquiry's finding of no overt religious discrimination at the Air Force Academy strains credibility, considering the academy superintendent has already acknowledged it will take years to undo the damage from evangelical zealots on campus. Indeed, amid its thicket of bureaucratese, the report by an Air Force investigative panel goes on for page after page describing cases of obvious and overt religious bias. But it tosses all of these off as "perceived bias," as if the blame lies with the victims and not the offenders, and throws up a fog of implausible excuses, like "a lack of awareness" of what is impermissible behavior by military officers.Read more... )

dogemperor [userpic]
Onward, Moderate Christian Soldiers


This NYT op-ed reminds us that there's a sleeping giant of moderate Christians who are stirring awake:

Onward, Moderate Christian Soldiers
June 17, 2005

St. Louis

IT would be an oversimplification to say that America's culture wars are now between people of faith and nonbelievers. People of faith are not of one mind, whether on specific issues like stem cell research and government intervention in the case of Terri Schiavo, or the more general issue of how religion relates to politics. In recent years, conservative Christians have presented themselves as representing the one authentic Christian perspective on politics. With due respect for our conservative friends, equally devout Christians come to very different conclusions.

It is important for those of us who are sometimes called moderates to make the case that we, too, have strongly held Christian convictions, that we speak from the depths of our beliefs, and that our approach to politics is at least as faithful as that of those who are more conservative. Our difference concerns the extent to which government should, or even can, translate religious beliefs into the laws of the state.Read more... )

dogemperor [userpic]
The Ties That Bind: Willful Ignorance and Religious Intolerance

LJ-SEC: (ORIGINALLY POSTED BY [info]meta4life)

For those of you in this good community who helped with suggestions for sources and references in this article (see title in Subject field), here is the first of the end results. There's more coming, but I want to alternate them with other pieces so that I can do the research that is needful to make them what I want them to be.

This first one falls a bit short of my personal expectations. If you stop by to read, please do leave me a comment to let me know what you think, and where you think I might go for future installments.

Thanks again for all your help and support. You may be interested to know that for all of James Dobson's hatred of gays and "pagans" he has never uttered one intolerant word about Muslims or the Koran directly. At least, not that I've been able to locate thus far.

The Ties that Bind: Willful Ignorance and Religious Intolerance

dogemperor [userpic]
Religious Tolerance: Climate Change

LJ-SEC: (ORIGINALLY POSTED BY [info]brigidsblest)

This article is originally from The Boston Globe, and was reprinted at http://www.CommonDreams.org/ :

Religious Tolerance: Climate Change

by James Carroll

Scandal at the Air Force Academy used to mean cheating or sexual harassment. Now the uproar is about the academy's religious ''climate," in the word used by an investigative task force. Christian cadets have been pressuring peers who believe differently, or who do not believe. Jewish cadets, in particular, have been targeted, charged with the murder of Christ.

Academy faculty and chaplain's staff are reported to have joined in the pressuring. The Pentagon is investigating. Reports of US guards denigrating the Koran in order to pressure Muslim prisoners at Guantanamo Bay sparked violent protests in Afghanistan. People died. Newsweek now says the report may not be true, but the storm it caused grew out of a general sense in the Islamic world that Muslims as Muslims are mistreated at Guantanamo Bay, and that America's war, despite Washington's denials, is against Islam itself.

The rest... )

It really isn't just one incident--the scandal at the academy, or the defilement of the Qu'ran (c'mon...does anyone really believe Newsweek when they say they made a mistake? I believe pressure was put on them to say such a thing, but I doubt the article was actually false or in error). No, it's a pattern of behavior manifested through multiple incidents--displaying the disrespect and contempt commonly found for other religions by those who follow Dominionist religions--and I doubt it's going to go away any time soon.

The article may be found at: http://www.commondreams.org/views05/0517-21.htm

Current Mood: angry
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