“You keep using that word, I do not think it means what you think it means”

Indgo Montoya The Princess Bride

There are now reports that Chick-Fil-A has not in fact changed their charitable positions, Michelle Malkin:

When I first saw reports on Twitter that Chick-fil-A had caved to the tolerance mob, I despaired. Corporation after corporation has given in to the free speech-squelching agitators on the Left who demand political conformity.

Turns out the information was coming from progressive activists trying to shape a false narrative.

She is referring to this statement that is pretty long winded to say something that shouldn’t take so many words:

In response to media reports that Chick-fil-A has agreed to stop making charitable donations to groups like Focus on the Family, the company today released a statement to set the record straight.

Contrary to reports first made by the gay-activist group The Civil Rights Agenda (TCRA) on Tuesday and later picked up by mainstream media outlets, Chick-fil-A and its charitable-giving arm, the WinShape Foundation, did not agree to stop making donations to groups that support the biblical definition of marriage in exchange for being allowed to open a franchise in Chicago.

“For many months now, Chick-fil-A’s corporate giving has been mischaracterized,” executives said in today’s statement. “And while our sincere intent has been to remain out of this political and social debate, events from Chicago this week have once again resulted in questions around our giving. For that reason, we want to provide some context and clarity around who we are, what we believe and our priorities in relation to corporate giving.

and this on the Huckabee site:

I talked earlier today personally with Dan Cathy, CEO of Chick Fil-A about the new reports that Chick Fil-A had capitulated to demands of the supporters of same sex marriage. This is not true. The company continues to focus on the fair treatment of all of its customers and employees, but to end confusion gave me this statement:

“There continues to be erroneous implications in the media that Chick-fil-A changed our practices and priorities in order to obtain permission for a new restaurant in Chicago. That is incorrect. Chick-fil-A made no such concessions, and we remain true to who we are and who we have been.”

The Baptist press had more to say:

Chick-fil-A’s base of support remains largely in conservative states, and those customers hardly consider Focus on the Family and other groups “anti-gay.” Many felt Chick-fil-A had caved.

Earlier this summer, hundreds of thousands of customers took part in Chick-fil-A Appreciation after company president Dan Cathy was criticized for comments supporting the biblical definition of marriage. Chick-fil-A’s stance on values is well-known: It is closed on Sundays, and its corporate statement includes the desire to “glorify God.”

In the 24 hours after the story out of Chicago broke, Chick-fil-A’s Facebook page was flooded with criticism of the new policy.

NBC’s story further clouded the issue:

Chick-fil-A tried to keep the agreement under wraps, said Rick Garcia, TCRA senior policy advisor. “My perspective is they want to have it both ways,” he said. “They’re getting opposition all over major metropolitan areas particularly in the north… The dilemma for them is will this hurt them with the right wingers?”

The problem here is semantics, to the left if you do not support Gay Marriage you are “Anti-Gay” under that definition the percentage of “anti-gay” people in the US was in the high 90% until just a few years ago

Garcia is now upset

“I am angry and disgusted,” said Rick Garcia, senior policy advisor at advocacy group The Civil Rights Agenda. “Chick-fil-A lied to us and lied to the alderman so that they could open their store in Chicago.”

He should not be if this is true it means a lot less trouble for left than the right since they can still fundraise on it and no longer have to worry about retaliation in the vast majority of the country that doesn’t back them.

As Sister Toldja said

I saw this article from Focus on the Family yesterday, and it has chopped up quotes from a new statement ChickfilA apparently released yesterday (which I have not seen in full) in response to their alleged caving. I don’t think this article clears much up at all, but you can decide for yourself:

She’s right, the whole “You can decide for yourself” business mean there is confusion. Now while the idea of a Chicago Pol lying through their teeth would not surprise me all that much it me re-iterate the biblical quote that was at the top of my previous post on the subject:

Let your ‘Yes’ mean ‘Yes,’ and your ‘No’ mean ‘No.’ Anything more is from the evil one. (Matthew 5:37)

This is unfair not only to people like me, but to people on the other side. So lets just ask the yes or no questions to Chick-Fil-A directly:

1. Have you in the past or have you not in the past given money to groups that are fighting to preserve Marriage?

2. If you have, did you or did you not make any promise to any group to no longer support groups fighting to preserve marriage?

3. If you did, have you decided to revoke that promise?

4. If you did not, did you deceive said groups into thinking you made such a promise?

If all of this was a false attempt by the Chicago Alderman to safe face and from Gay Marriage groups to compromise you a different way, no one will be more delighted than me although it means I will have to re-write the words to my updated version of Kipling’s The Dane Geld that I have scheduled to go up tomorrow night.

Either way we need to know, not guess, remember the commandment about false witness? I understand that you don’t want to be in this mess, but you claim an affinity of Christ and as Robert Stacy McCain put it when talking about a different subject:

 

And if you are worried about the flack, remember the words from all those centuries ago:

“If the world hates you, realize that it hated me first. If you belonged to the world, the world would love its own; but because you do not belong to the world, and I have chosen you out of the world, the world hates you. Remember the word I spoke to you, ‘No slave is greater than his master.’ If they persecuted me, they will also persecute you. If they kept my word, they will also keep yours. And they will do all these things to you on account of my name, because they do not know the one who sent me. If I had not come and spoken to them, they would have no sin; but as it is they have no excuse for their sin. Whoever hates me also hates my Father. John 15:18-23

If you claim Christianity the idea that people will hate you and go after you isn’t a problem to be solved, it’s part of the job description.

Update: Protean wisdom finds more clarity than I did in the statements but makes a fair case here:

Me, I believe the real “compromise” was this: the Alderman secured the right to declare public victory; and in exchange, Chick-fil-A retained its own status quo, and received the licensing to open its franchise. For them, it was a business decision, and its principles remained unchanged. While for the Alderman, it was a PR victory, even though nothing at all changed.

It’s Chicago politics. And its long past due for that place to be evacuated, burned to the ground, the earth beneath salted, and marigold seeds planted atop the ruins.

As for Chick-fil-A, they are under no obligation to make some sort of national public stance and become the retail crucible for culture war battles; having said that, it’s comforting to know that they didn’t compromise, and that — as is the left’s wont — they were forced to declare victory while securing no such thing, then using that declaration to shore up their identity politics bona fides with activists who, like the Alderman, care more about optics than they do about the actual fallout from their policy proposals.

I hope he’s right

Update 3: Paying the Gay-Geld?

Today on DaTechGuy on DaRadio in our first hour we will be welcoming Film Director and Blogger Ladd Ehlinger we wil talk about the new 9/11 attacks in Egypt & Libya and the sudden disdain for the first Amendment that the president & the Hollywood left suddenly hold (at least if you offend Islam).

During the 2nd hour we will talk about a subject that I alluded to last week, the Gawker piece suggesting Pedophilia be classified as a sexual orientation and the new piece by Hollywood director Nick Cassavetees defending Incest.

Join us on 10 AM EST on WCRN AM 830 Worcester Mass and don’t forget if you are somehow outside our 50,000 Watt Range you have a lot of streaming options.

You can listen live using the three different links for the WCRN live stream
If you are using Windows media player click here
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If you are using something else, then go to Tune-in.

And yes you can be part of the conversation call 508-438-0965 or toll-free nationwide 888-9-fedora.

If you give me power, I’ll use it

Lady Agrippinna to Claudius. I Claudius 1976

One of the disadvantages of abandoning Judeo-Christian ethics is that you get an interesting crop of ‘Ethicists’

We take ‘person’ to mean an individual who is capable of attributing to her own existence some (at least) basic value such that being deprived of this existence represents a loss to her … it is not possible to damage a newborn by preventing her from developing the potentiality to become a person in the morally relevant sense …

what we call ‘after-birth abortion’ (killing a newborn) should be permissible in all the cases where abortion is, including cases where the newborn is not disabled.”

We who subscribe to the old-fashioned oppressive philosophy of traditional western civilization refer to this as “murder”.

I would say I was surprised at this post at Breitbart (via smitty) but that would be as dishonest as a Democrat in the White House denying they are connected with Hilary Rosen:

I would make the obvious statement that this is simply evil, and I mean Satanic level evil, but our modern secular society has decided that “evil” is relative and “Satan” is superstition so let me make the self-interest argument that such folks will understand:

Once you decide to abandon the Judeo-Christian principle that all lives are of equal value in the eyes of God, once Doctors abandon the traditional Hippocratic Oath then things like “personhood” and “life” and “ethics” can be defined however those with power choose to do so, I assure you they will.

And when the day comes when someone playing Kodos decides to define YOUR life or your children’s lives as something without value to society, a waste of scarce resources better used for others, remember who willingly gave them the power to declare you obsolete.

You have been warned.

Update: Let me make something clear that might not be clear otherwise, one does not have to believe in the God or the doctrine of either Judaism or Christianity (or as I call him God) to agree that the Judeo-Christian ethic of all life being of value is an important one and a healthy one for a society. It is on that Juedo-Christian ethic that western Civilization is built (with kudos to the Greeks for the ideas of Democracy and Republicanism).

Update 2: Bill Quick who I admire and while agreeing with me on the sheer evil of this suggestion considers the post an “unwarranted smear against atheists” and points to an example of Christians violating their own tenants tenets. Fair point, many Christians do, but that reflects on those who violate those tenants, not the tenants> tenets themselves, as Christ himself said:

“The scribes and the Pharisees have taken their seat on the chair of Moses. Therefore, do and observe all things whatsoever they tell you, but do not follow their example. For they preach but they do not practice. Matthew 23:2-3

I would still submit that the weakness of a moral code not God based means it can be altered by man or even by majority vote, and when that is true anything is possible depending on the current (ICK factor).

Remember civilization, peace and justice is not the default position in the history of men or nations, that’s why America for all it’s faults that our friends on the left love to point out is as special as it is.

Update 3: Typed tenants instead of tenets but for the record, if a Christian violates his “tenants” that’s against the “tenets” of the church too.

Rick Santorum Catholicism is rapidly becoming an issue in this race, at least for the left. Over and over we see them (and some Romney supporters who are becoming increasingly desperate) fret over beliefs concerning contraception, abortion and sex before marriage, all doctrines of the Catholic Church to which he belongs. This is in marked contrast to the MSM cavalier attitude to a certain Chicago Senator’s church but we can’t mention that without charges of “racism”.

One of the advantages of being born in 1963 to parents born in the early 20’s and grandparents born in the 1890’s is it gives one an excellent perspective on the massive cultural changes of the 60’s while still being young enough to talk about it without people dismissing you.

Many people do not remember that Orthodox religious belief for almost the entire history of the country has been the norm. If you go though the record of speeches, of official documents at all levels from presidential on down you see this same type of thing. Likewise if you look at what was orthodox protestant belief 100 years ago on subjects such as birth control, there is not much if any difference between that and current Catholic belief.

Somehow people don’t remember a time when teens suicide was not common, nor was resignation of premarital sex, the acceptance of divorce as the best solution, gangs not being strong on the streets, drugs not being prevent in our schools, police officers not having to be stationed inside.

Even more amazing is the change in the Black community, at the same time as giants fought for an achieved civil rights, black families stuck together and in strong families despite the oppression and discrimination that had to be endured. Today with the legal protections in place and a generation that considers the entire question of race as a qualification for employment or advancement an oddity we see black illegitimacy rates, incarceration rates, and crime rates though the roof.

The question is why?

I think the answer is exemplified by a simple contrast between two events:

NYC announced that they would not be holding a parade for the troops, (somehow these “objections” didn’t stop St. Louis) The fact that is even was a matter that needed discussion is a matter of great amazement to me, then again as colleges had to be dragged kicking and screaming into bringing back ROTC and as the left spent the last decade demonizing soldiers, the idea that volunteers who willingly risk their lives to defend the country might not be supported (unless they shoot their officers of course) should not have surprised me.

These serving men and women are the modern greatest generation yet many in our society, particularly on the left disdain them.

Meanwhile in New Jersey flags in the state were flown at half mast for Whitney Houston, a pretty good singer who rose to fame and wealth due to a fine voice but wasted in on drugs until it killed her. Yes she sang very nice but her life and death is a celebration of hedonism and the fact that every cable network felt complected to cover is was astounding to me.

BTW there is no parade scheduled for the troop in New Jersey either.

Mike Barnicle’s close to his famous article on the death of Mother Teresa and Princess Diana comes to mind:

Anybody who claims they can explain the logic behind the enormous outpouring for a dead princess is not to be believed because it is inexplicable. And anyone who equates the deeds of Diana’s life with those of Mother Teresa’s is a fool.

Substitute “Whitney Houston” for Diana in that paragraph and Sgt. Paul Smith posthumous medal of Honor recipient for Mother Teresa in those two sentences and it reads exactly the same.

Put simply the culture has gone from a culture that celebrates merit and duty to a culture that celebrates fame and hedonism.

And that brings us to Rick Santorum.

Unlike the Pelosis, Kerrys and Bidens of the left he doesn’t proclaim his Catholicism and then distort or disdain the beliefs of the Church he proclaims. He is more Rosemary Reynolds than Mario Cuomo unwilling to divide himself. Like most practicing Catholics (you know people who actually go to church weekly) his faith and belief informs him, it is not something that comes out once a week to be hidden from view. For the majority of the history of this country this was nothing odd, and in our divided culture, the half that still honors religion it is perfectly normal.

To an MSM that has abandoned faith and religion of their parents and have filled it with noise Santorum is a strange and frightening thing. Santorum is a direct threat, a reminder of the cultural failure of the 60’s and the hook up culture, a reminder that one can’t command a majority when your voter base aborts their children or chooses to delay or avoid having them. (There will be a lot of Santorum children voting long after both Maureen Dowd and I are dead and gone).

Demographics are destiny and the 60’s generation that never quite realized that never quite abandoned their teenage belief in their intellectual superiority to their parents who won the 2nd world war are slowly losing the fight, not just because of demographics but because of the cultural failures that people of the right and of faith have been avoiding through home and religious schooling.

What they forget is that “dark age” that they proclaim Santorum belongs to was an age of intact families, an age of people knowing their neighbors and an age where schools were safe and the children in them not only respected their teachers but were learning things that our current crop of public school students can’t seem to manage. They largely are railing against a past that didn’t exist to a group of people so ill-informed that they don’t realize that they are fighting against a myth.

Now in terms of electoral politics for Democrats it’s an open and shut business. It’s a lot easier to hit Santorum on issues of culture than trying to defend the Obama economic record. For many others there is something more elemental going on.

They can’t allow Santorum to be considered a credible or mainstream candidate. It’s not enough that Santorum be defeated to the left, he must be marginalized as a fanatic, it must be made clear to any in America that no believing Catholic need apply for the office of president of the United States.

Because if Rick Santorum is elected and the world doesn’t end and the values of a generation that held them against a self-destructive culture are put on display and expressed from the bully pulpit, the clarifying effect on society would be more than the left can bear.

Update: Glenn Reynolds on the attacks hitting Santorum:

Democrats are worried, so they’re playing the Republicans Will Steal Your Ladyparts!!!! card. And the knees are jerking as hoped. Women, you’re being played. Again.

A year and a half ago I went to a Blockbuster video to rent a game for my youngest. There was a lady coming out so naturally I took off my hat and held the door open for her.

There was a girl maybe 19 maybe 22 at the counter and as I walked in her mouth was opened wide saying: “Wow!”

I turned around to see what she was looking at and discovered it was me, she said: “You took off your hat and held the door open for that woman, that is so cool!”

I thought it was an incredible shame that for this young woman such a simply act would be so extraordinary. Perhaps she was expecting more of what Mark Steyn describes here:

Today there is no social norm, so it’s every man for himself – operative word “man,” although not many of the chaps on the Titanic would recognize those on the Costa Concordia as “men.” From a grandmother on the latter: “I was standing by the lifeboats and men, big men, were banging into me and knocking the girls.”

Whenever I write about these subjects, I receive a lot of mail from men along the lines of this correspondent:

“The feminists wanted a gender-neutral society. Now they’ve got it. So what are you complaining about?”

And so the manly virtues (if you’ll forgive a quaint phrase) shrivel away to the so-called “man caves,” those sad little redoubts of beer and premium cable sports networks.

We are beyond social norms these days. A woman can be a soldier. A man can be a woman. A 7-year-old cross-dressing boy can join the Girl Scouts in Colorado because he “identifies” as a girl. It all adds to life’s rich tapestry, no doubt. But I can’t help wondering, when the ship hits the fan, how many of us will still be willing to identify as a man.

That’s the whole point, we often here about Men as predators as violent etc, yet civilization’s checks that existed to restrain men are gone, Steyn notes an old story:

On Feb. 26, 1852, HMS Birkenhead was wrecked off the coast of Cape Town while transporting British troops to South Africa. There were, as on the Titanic, insufficient lifeboats. The women and children were escorted to the ship’s cutter. The men mustered on deck. They were ordered not to dive in the water lest they risk endangering the ladies and their young charges by swamping the boats. So they stood stiffly at their posts as the ship disappeared beneath the waves. As Kipling wrote:

“We’re most of us liars, we’re ‘arf of us thieves, an’ the rest of us rank as can be,

But once in a while we can finish in style (which I ‘ope it won’t ‘appen to me).”

This is the tragedy of modern feminism and the culture that the media embraces. We expect very little from men today and we guys, who basically want in life a place to relax, and the occasional company of a nice lady, rise exactly to the level that is expected of us. Steyn again:

Abe Greenwald isn’t thinking big enough. The Costa Concordia isn’t merely a metaphor for EU collapse but – here it comes down the slipway – the fragility of civilization. Like every ship, the Concordia had its emergency procedures – the lifeboat drills that all crew and passengers are obliged to go through before sailing. As with the security theater at airports, the rituals give the illusion of security – and then, as the ship tips and the lights fail and the icy black water rushes in, we discover we’re on our own: from dancing and dining, showgirls and saunas, to the inky depths in a matter of moments.

There are two civilizations currently in the United States, only one of them calls upon men to act like men. I’d like to think that in that situation I would act like a man.

Everybody dies, not everybody dies well.

Your Future is whatever you make of it, so make it a good one

Back to the future III, 1990

You must choose but choose wisely…

Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade, 1989

When I saw the link to Maureen Dowd’s piece in the NYT at Hotair I resisted opening it. Having read Ms. Dowd in the past I knew exactly what she would say and how she would say it. So with a rushed schedule, I wasn’t sure about wasting my time with it. Curiosity, however, got the better of me so I clicked over and saw exactly what I expected, with a slight twist.

Even for Santorum, it was a masterpiece of antediluvian abrasiveness — slapping gays and Mormons at the same time.
When 17-year-old Rhiannon Pyle, visiting with her civics class from Newburyport, Mass., pressed Santorum on how he could believe that all men are created equal and still object to two men in love marrying, he began nonsensically frothing.

It was a clever piece of writing. It was also a an exercise in mendacity or, as Newt would put it: Ms. Dowd is a liar.

I was at that event, I shot the video of that entire question and I invite any person who chooses to read her piece to watch this video I shot there…

… and then read the Dowd piece a second time and ask yourself whether she is telling the truth or I am.

Now, I’ll grant that I’ve endorsed Rick Santorum, and I’ll also grant that Ms. Dowd is of the opposite opinion, but protestations of the secular culture notwithstanding, there is such a thing as objective truth and Ms. Dowd, in her attempt to paint Rick Santorum as a bigot, fails to reach that standard.

Oddly enough, as gay marriage has been legal in some states for less than 10 years, perhaps Ms. Dowd whose career predates that time, will call out as bigots the entire population of the U.S. and the world who lived before the 21st century. While she does so, perhaps she will call out herself as I don’t remember any pieces promoting gay marriage before it became a cause celebré and she has been writing since the 1970s.

This post however is not so much about her piece as it is what occurred to me as I read it.

In Ms. Dowd’s piece, she goes after Mrs. Karen Santorum. This is no accident. The senator’s wife represents every choice that Ms. Dowd has rejected.

Mrs. Santorum is a faithful Catholic, long married, a mother of seven who has experienced the joys and the tragedies of motherhood, a person who has not let those tragedies destroy her or her faith. In an age when the popular culture rejects her choices, Mrs. Santorum decided to homeschool her surviving children to make sure they had an education that represented the culture and values that she found important.

Ms Dowd has taken a different path. As she approaches her 60th year, she is at the top of her profession, a columnist at one of the most famous newspapers in the world. She has money, fame and awards for her writing. No one can honestly contest that she has earned these accolades though hard work and effort over decades. As a person newly trying to make a living with words written and spoken I appreciate her success an, if I reach even one-tenth the level of success she has, I’ll be proud of myself.

Both Mrs. Santorum’s choices and Ms. Dowd’s come with a price. I have no doubt that Mrs. Santorum could have, when she was Karen Garver, pursued a successful career in any field she chose. I’m sure on occasion, when the kids have been particularly difficult, she briefly wished it was so.

Ms. Dowd choice has left her alone. I’m not privy to her dating history and, frankly, it’s not my business. Suffice to say she has not chosen marriage and I see no reason to believe she will. As for children, at 60, that’s unlikely even with the aid of modern science.

These are two different paths. This is only my opinion, but it seems to me that the difference is I see no evidence that Mrs. Santorum begrudges Ms. Dowd’s choices while, reading her column today (and from my memory of her writing) I can’t say the same for Ms. Dowd, who seems to resent the very thought that in 2012 a woman might choose Karen Santorum’s path. And perhaps Ms. Dowd resents that Mrs. Santorum can, once her children are grown, choose a new  path …

…and that brings us to Meghan McCain.

Meghan McCain is 27 years old, ironically she started writing at about the same age as Ms. Dowd.

When I read Dowd’s piece suddenly I thought of Meghan McCain and her statement concerning her father and Rick Santorum. I wrote about it briefly and not being able to say anything gentlemanly I let it go. The medium was different than Ms. Dowd’s, but the anger and snark seemed exactly the same.

I’m not Ms. McCain’s father but I’m old enough to be so. As she gets closer to age 30, a huge life-changing choice is upon her.

It’s not about her opinions, it’s not about her politics, it’s about herself.

Before her, she can see two futures: A future as epitomized by Maureen Dowd, a life that can produce success with hard work but one that rejects the joys and responsibilities of marriage and motherhood, embracing the modern chic culture; or the future as epitomized by Mrs. Santorum epitomized by marriage, children and responsibility — one that requires just as much hard work but with vastly different rewards.

I would suggest to young Ms. McCain that the rewards of Mrs. Santorum’s path are greater and will last long after chic opinion moves to another topic, and age makes it a constant and expensive struggle to remain fashionable. But that choice is hers not mine, and perhaps she can take a middle path like Mika Brzezinski. However, even that middle path has a deadline that is approaching.

Look at these women and ask yourself, Meagan, that question that is so difficult for a young person so far away from my age-let alone Ms. Dowd’s this question: “When I am 60 which life would I like to have?”

I urge you not to hesitate as time and biology will answer that question for you.

May whatever choice you make bring you happiness.

Update: Roxeanne who is near Ms. McCain’s age has this to say:

But, as a woman who always had a gut-level feeling that she is not called to marriage, I see this a bit differently, for one cannot always choose whether or not to find a great husband and to have a minivan full of children. We are not guaranteed such rewards, even if we choose the path that would likely lead us to such rewards. What we can do, however, is to be the type of woman whom a good man would want to marry, and would be proud to have as the mother of his children. If you do not end up with a huge, loving family (or a small, loving family, if two kids are about all you can handle), it shouldn’t be because you are a raging shrew whom men will sleep with but would never marry.

I humbly suggest it is a scathing indictment of my gender that such a young man has not come forth for Roxeanne yet.

Stacy McCain suggests I will not be forgiven for this piece,

The feminists will never forgive Pete for this, of course.

It is my experience that feminists, when angry, revert to predictable arguments about the ignorance and prejudice of their critics.
that’s not relevant

What feminists think of my piece is the furthest thing from my mind. My only concern is for the well-being and happiness of a young lady with great potential.

Today I’m going to be meeting with various potential customers who might choose to take advantage of the old ad rates before the sales team takes over.

Lucky for you DaTechGuy is all over the net right now:

First my Under the Fedora Column is up at the Minority Report blog

I’ve just finished watching The Doctor Who Christmas special. All day BBC America is showed a marathon but interrupted it for the Queen’s annual Christmas message. Not being a British subject I’d never heard one before today .

I have a soft spot for Queen Elizabeth, she is a stalwart friend of the United States, and the last link to the days when Britain was truly great. I have a horrible feeling that when she dies the best part of England will die with her.

It will likely be up before the end of the day at The Conservatory as well.

Looking for some Boston Tea party info? I’ve got it at the examiner today:

The Greater Boston Tea Party has elected Christine Morabito to serve as president of the non-profit, all-volunteer policy advocacy organization. Ms. Morabito, whose two-year term commences January 1, 2012, replaces Christen Varley, who served as the first president. Both are counted among founders of the organization.

And if you want a little culture wars, the Third part of my series at Ladd Ehlinger’s place on Cinema and the Culture wars is up and running. I deal with the Movie: Oh God and you might be surprised which side of the culture wars I think it’s on:

It’s a feel good movie all around. The performances are excellent, John Denver is totally believable as Jerry Landers, helped by a good performance by Teri Garr as his wife and a cast chock full of some of the best character actors out there from William Daniels, to Jeff Corey and Ralph Bellamy. Add two actors who were yet to have their greatest impact–Paul Sorvino and David Ogden Stiers, punctuated of course by George Burns, who carries off the role with perfect timing and style. What’s there not to like about this movie? You have a nice conservative message about an unbeliever who hears the word of God and follows it, an affirmation of the importance of following God’s word no matter what, and the message that following God is not without cost.

If you look deeper, however, you will find some interesting messages hidden delivered with such skill that you might miss it, if you didn’t look.

Parts 1 and 2 featured Gunga Din and Captains Courageous

Later this evening I’ll be reporting from the Twin City Tea Party Christmas Party . Hope these pieces can hold you over till then.

In part of the old British Empire it is Boxing day, but in Berkley and places like that today is the start of Kwanzza.

I had no intention of writing about Kwanzza this year, like the slightly older Festivus it is a totally invented holiday and the one time I did write about it concerned it’s growing irrelevance:

Whether it’s gone because nobody knew how to sell it, or because nobody wanted to buy it, Kwanzaa is now nowhere to be found.

That was from a Huff po article I wouldn’t even write about it today but I was tweeted an article about Kwanzaa today by Adisa Banjoko that really is the final stake through the heart:

I did participate in a few Kwanzaa events back when ’89 was the number. I always tried to do observe it. But once I did the history on its founder and some of the deeper elements of its hollow cultural base, it was hard to continue on. For those who do, I promise I’m not mad at you. Not that you would care. But you can’t get your kente cloth all in a bunch because I’m not feeling it.

Look, I love Africa and what it means to be Black. I love almost everything African (aside from the tribal fighting and the needless murder and rape of women across the continent). But Kwanzaa is not African. I never knew an African (from any part of the continent) who was like “Yo Adisa, bro you wanna slide thought to the Kwanzaa fest playa?” It has never happened! They don’t get down like that.

Kwanzaa is like a bad weave. People might kinda like it, but we all know it ain’t real. Now, I live on the West coast, in the Bay Area. The only people I see really on some Kwanzaa “ish” are the hardcore revolutionary types you might find at the Berkeley flea market selling incense and shea butter soap

I remember when the MSM pushed Kwanzza like there was no tomorrow, this piece is the only one I’ve seen on the subject on the net during my regular surfing, and I haven’t seen a single thing on TV concerning it, not one.

The truth is Kwanzza was always about creating a socialist alternative to Christmas the one holiday the secularists would love to co-opt. The failure of that attempt is so huge that I’ll wager there are more people at mass today for the feast of St. Stephen the first martyr than celebrating Kwanzza.

But hey if you want to celebrate Kwanzza go ahead and enjoy it and my best to you.

On a non-religious level it seems to me you can not rationally say that gay marriage is ok and should be legal without also allowing either polygamy and incest between consenting adults. Both have a longer and more accepted cultural history worldwide.

And PLEASE don’t give me the “ick” factor argument about these other things being accepted. Ick is just an argument about culture. It is the same argument that one would have heard concerning gay marriage less that 20 years ago.

  DaTechGuy: Dec 23rd 2008 Richard Cohen, Narcissist or Bigot

That was another little goof of mine, shame. I don’t know why I thought we needed shame

George Burns as God.  Oh God 1977

Without God everything is  permitted

Fyodor Dostoevsky

On Friday the Star Tribune published a story concerning a prank at a high school rally that was …”interesting”:

A prank on some blindfolded Rosemount High School athletes — they were unknowingly and at times amorously kissed by their parents during a recent pep fest — is collecting YouTube views by the tens of thousands and has the principal apologizing for what happened.

Here’s how the practical joke, originated by school staff members, played out during the assembly on Dec. 8:

The captains of the school’s winter sports teams — boys and girls — were lined up and blindfolded. They were told they would be kissed and then asked to guess who was on the other side of their lips.

Some of the parents during the 59-second YouTube video are seen holding the kisses for several seconds, cupping their child’s faces or embracing and swaying.

Deacon Greg is nauseated, The Anchoress is shocked.

I’d like to say I’m surprised but I’m not. I’ve been paying attention. It’s been just one year since the Swiss started talking the repeal of incest laws. It is only four months since psychologists met in DC to discuss “normalizing” pedophilia as a mental illness.

I think they both missed the most important line of the piece (all emphasis mine):

“There is no question that people were offended,” Wollersheim told the Star Tribune. “I apologize to those who were offended, and we won’t do it again.

“Anything that happens at this school is the principal’s responsibility. I take full responsibility. … There shouldn’t be an event in a school that we offend people with.

Note what is said. He is sorry that people were offended. Not that it was wrong, not that it was creepy, but that people were offended.

The implication that if people were NOT offended it would have been OK.

That more than anything else is the take away here, if it wasn’t for those puritanical prudes who were offended this would be no big deal and we could all have our fun.

The above can stand on it’s own but I’m about to make a VERY uncomfortable point, if you don’t want to see it then don’t click the continue button

Update: Wouldn’t you know that just as I finish this post I’ve worked hours on to schedule for tonight Darleen Click uses the Ick Factor line in a great post at Protein Wisdom!

Update 2: That’s Click not Glick, my bad, thanks Joy.

Update 3: Stacy at Accepting Abundance links quoting applicable law.
Continue reading “The logical result of 50 years of secularism”

Stacy being Stacy writes an excellent piece on the cultural change since the last major anniversary of the Civil War:

Patriotism and courage have gone long since gone out of fashion. America’s intellectual elite — “The Ruling Class,” as Professor Codevilla calls them — are nowadays the diligent disciples of draft-dodgers who once marched beneath Vietcong flags in anti-war demonstrations. In the “long twilight struggle” against communism, they were on the other side. Their philosophy requires them to inculcate in our youth an unpatriotic attitude that views American military power as a force for oppression. Today’s progressive curriculum teaches children to embrace our nation’s foreign enemies as victims of capitalist imperialism. Before Bill Ayers became mentor to a young Barack Obama, he co-authored a 1974 Weather Underground manifesto that cited communist Che Guevara as a role model and was dedicated to such “political prisoners” as Sirhan Sirhan, assassin of Robert F. Kennedy. In their “Prairie Fire” manifesto, Ayers and his terrorist comrades declared themselves a “guerrilla organization,” devoted to “the final defeat of imperialism and building of socialism [through] revolutionary war.” They utterly lacked the courage to fight, however, and so Ayers’ cowardly “war” was waged by stealthily planting bombs and hiding out until he surrendered to authorities in December 1980. “Prairie Fire” was also dedicated to John Brown, the antebellum terrorist whose murderous violence against civilians did much to bring on the crisis that led to war 150 years ago. But whereas Brown was not ashamed to hang for his crimes, Ayers never even served a day in prison.

It writing that should be read but as far as Roger Pryor goes, his advice to Jefferson Davis to “Strike a blow” was advice so bad that even the fellow who said to the current Occupant of the White House “Gaddafi is about to fall, maybe we should put out a statement.” didn’t manage to outdo it.