Tag Archives: Twitter

It’s 6:27 AM. What’s Your President(-Elect) Doing?

So, the Golden Globe awards show happened. As a general rule, I wouldn’t hit a hog in the ass for an awards show. Basically, I think they’re nothing but a bunch of attention whores getting together to shout, “Look how super-cool we are! Don’t you plebes all wish you could be like us?” Every now and then, however, something amusing comes out of these publicly televised circle jerks. Sunday night was one of those times.

Meryl Streep received the Cecil B. DeMille Award for lifetime achievement and gave an acceptance speech that people are still talking about. It was a bit long and addressed several issues, but the most interesting part was when she took the tiny-handed toddler who is about to be leader of the free world (aka Donald Trump) to task for making fun of a disabled reporter during his campaign, saying, “Disrespect invites disrespect. Violence incites violence. When the powerful use their position to bully others, we all lose.”

Of course, the Tangerine Nightmare couldn’t let this slide and took to his favorite platform (Twitter) to respond. At 6:27 on Monday morning, he unleashed a brief and, in his mind, devastating, Tweetstorm on Streep:

There are some intriguing aspects this semi-sentient tire fire’s response: Like, it doesn’t make any sense (Streep is “one of the most over-rated actresses in Hollywood”???), it’s bullshit (he did indeed mock Serge Kovaleski and Kovaleski did not change his story), and, yet again, he disparaged the press for reporting what he said. But, perhaps the most intriguing part of it all (and by “intriguing”, I mean “utterly fucking scary”) is that the man(child) that will soon be commander-in-chief of the most potent and powerful military machine the world has ever seen has such a thin skin he can’t let anything go.

Think about it for a minute, Trump is just 12 days out from taking on what is arguably the most difficult job in the world and what’s he doing this close to his first day at work? Tweeting insults at an actress.  This isn’t a one time thing, either. Hell, just a few days ago, he was on Twitter gloating about how he got better ratings on “The Apprentice” than Arnold Schwarzenegger. And, let’s not forget his feuds with Saturday Night Live and the cast of “Hamilton”. How presidential.

But, hey, he’s just telling it like it is, right? I mean, who do these people think they are? Citizens in a country with an fundamental right to criticize the government and the politicians that run it? But, even if they are, doesn’t Trump have a right to defend himself from that criticism? So what if he’s putting up that defense instead of taking intelligence briefings, conducting press conferences, put together a cabinet; you know, the job he was elected to do?

Damn. This is going to be a long, long four years.

You’re Making The Rest Of Us Look Bad

Between the craziness about the flag and the way conservative Christians have lost their fucking minds over the Court’s ruling on marriage, it’s an interesting time to be a progressive blogger with a snarky, sarcastic side. We’ve all seen the crap coming from Tony Perkins, Mike Huckabee, Rick Santorum and a host of others.  But, the most consistent purveyor of bat-crap crazy has got to be Bryan Fischer of the American Family Association. In a field of frothing-at-the-mouth nitwits, Fischer manages to rise head and shoulders above all the others with utterances like this:

Bryan Fischer back of the bus
Image courtesy of Dan Arel’s danothropolgy blog on Patheos.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Yes, beloved, you can believe your eyes: a white guy just compared the imagined persecution of a bunch of (mostly) white people to the Civil Rights movement. Funny, I haven’t seen the cops turning fire hoses and attack dogs on conservative Christians because they’re protesting the recognition of someone else’s rights. My god, the irony in that statement is almost as palpable as Fischer’s cluelessness.

Sadly, that’s not the only demented thing he has to say on the subject; it was just another post in a Twitter rant that’s still going on. So far, Fischer has called the Supreme Court “rainbow jihadists”; said that Justice Kennedy “killed” the 1st Amendment; compared people who are LGBT+ to Nazi’s (aka “the Gay Gestapo”); claimed that SCOTUS released the ruling when they did in order to “turbo-charge gay pride parades” and said (this may be favorite) that the “Supreme Court makes it harder to go to heaven”. You know, Fischer’s ranting is almost as imaginative as that of Antonin Scalia. Were these two separated at birth or something?

As I said earlier, Fischer isn’t the only one saying this kind of stuff, he’s just the most…, let’s say, “interesting”. Now, most of these assholes have an agenda to push: Huckabee and Santorum are trying to whip their supporters into a frenzy that they hope will result in votes; Perkins and some others are attempting to scare people into sending them more money; a few, like certain people on Fox (I’m looking at you, Bill O’Reilly), are attention whores who desperately hope their comments translate into higher ratings. Almost none of these people actually believe the crap they’re putting out; it’s just a means to an end. Only a few, like Fischer, are “true believers” and are throughly convinced of the rightness (and, righteousness) of their message. But, that doesn’t make what they say any less stupid or damaging.

If the propagators of this bullshit were just sleazy politicians pandering for votes and attention whores trolling for ratings, it would be one thing. But, it’s not; almost all the ugly things being said about same-sex marriage, affordable health care, racism, income inequality and a host of other important issues are coming from people who claim to be followers of Christ. What…the…actual…fuck? Seriously, almost everything these people say is in direct opposition to what Jesus taught. What, you don’t believe me? Well, let’s a take a quick look:

  • Same-sex marriage _  this is a tough one, because Jesus didn’t say much about marriage in general and nothing at all about same-sex marriage. In fact, the only thing he did say on the subject concerned  divorce. While some folks try to say that passage somehow speaks to what Jesus thought about same-sex marriage or sexual orientation (concepts that didn’t even exist when this was said), that’s a stretch, at best. And, disingenuous at worst.
  • Affordable health care _ Again, we’re faced with a dilemma because, like LGBT+ issues, this wasn’t even a thing is the 1st century. And, again, Jesus never said anything about it. But, considering that most of the miracles he performed were healings, I have a sneaking suspicion that he’d be cool with the idea.
  • Income Inequality _ Finally some solid ground! What’s that you say? Jesus would never condone redistribution of wealth? Au contraire, mon frere. He specifically did so in Mark 10 (aka the story of the rich young man). So, yeah.
  • Racism _ Now, the J-man didn’t specifically speak about racism, but he did tell his followers to love each other. Losing your shit when we just talk about removing a flag that symbolizes racism and oppression to a lot of people in this country isn’t exactly what I’d call loving. Come on y’all, it’s not that god-damned hard to figure out.

Don’t get me wrong, though; I’m not saying you can’t agree with Fischer on these and other subjects. Hell, I’m not even saying that you can’t call yourself a Christian if you do. As proponent of free will, I believe you can do and say anything you want. But, if you decide to keep this up, I really wish you’d find another name for yourselves. You’re making the rest of us look bad.

Emergent Fundamentals?

CBRP-Hayes-FundamentalsYesterday, I got into a Twitter conversation with Brian Merritt who asked “Does the label Emergent give Conservatives an out from being called conservative while not really coming close to historic liberalism?” Unlike, many online discussions, it didn’t get ugly or argumentative. Mostly because Brian (and his wife Carol Howard-Merritt) is very cool. I first noticed him while he was pastor at Palisades Community Church in Washington D.C. and got involved with Occupy K Street. Iam an Occupy supporter and respect any clergy that embraces the movement. So, yesterday’s conversation started from a good place and didn’t veer off. Now, I won’t bore you with the whole thing, but I answered Brian’s initial question by saying “Possibly. Although, I’ve yet to run into any conservatives that come close to actually being Emergent.” Things went back and forth a bit before Brian said “many I know (emergents) would have little problem with many of the original five fundamentals. They may reinterpret them in post-modern language”. Which made me wonder if he was right. Which, in turn, made me examine where I stood on those five fundamentals.

I suppose before we get into what I believe, we should probably look at those five fundamentals. As I stated in the series “Inerrancy v. Context” (parts I, II, III), fundamentalism started as a reaction to growing liberalism in the 18th and 19th centuries. Conservatives were worried that such thinking could mean the end of the faith and set out five core beliefs that were fundamental to Christianity. They are:

  1. The inerrancy of the Bible
  2. The literal nature of biblical accounts, especially the Creation Story and the miracles of Christ.
  3. The Virgin Birth
  4. The resurrection and physical return of Jesus.
  5. The substitutionary nature of the Atonement.

So, there they are, the five fundamentals of faith. According to some people, if you don’t adhere to each and every one of these points, you’re not a Christian. And by that standard, I’m most certainly not a Christian. Why do I say that? Let me break it down for you:

  1. As stated in the aforementioned series, I do not believe in the inerrancy of the Bible. Not only do I believe it must be interpreted, in various places, I think it’s flat-out wrong. The Bible condones slavery, I do not. The Bible advocates the death penalty for various offenses, I do not. The Bible says that anything but heterosexuality is an abomination, I do not. Hey, I’m finally an overachiever!
  2. Because I reject a literal interpretation of the Bible, I must reject “the literal nature of biblical accounts”, right? Kinda. I do believe that Christ performed miracles and, more than likely, the Gospel accounts are accurate (at least as accurate as translations of 2000 year old documents can be). The creation story, however, is…, well, another story. I view the Genesis accounts as more allegorical than historical. Do I only lose half a point on this one?
  3. To be perfectly honest, the virgin birth doesn’t matter one way or the other to me. Some might say that means I reject the divinity of Jesus, but that’s not the case. I think Jesus’ life and actions do more do prove that divinity that some crazy story of cosmic conception that could well be based on the mistranslation of a word or an author using an Old Testament story (allegory?) to show that Jesus was the Messiah.
  4. I do believe Jesus rose from the grave. You can be a Christian and not believe that, however. On the physical return end of things, that may or may not be true. It’s possible that Jesus will come back (I believe in a Jewish zombie. After that, a physical return isn’t such a big deal). It’s just as possible, however, that Jesus used the idea of His return as a metaphor for the time when all people followed His way and the Kingdom of Heaven reigned on Earth.
  5. I am not a believer in penal substitutionary atonement. I think it paints God as a colossal asshole that can only be satisfied by blood. That’s not a God I want to follow. I’m not really happy with any of the atonement theories as they all seem to be inextricably tied to original sin and all that crap. I suppose the closest one to what I believe would be the moral influence theory, which says that Jesus died to show humanity the immensity of God’s love in order to affect moral change. Hear that bubbling sound? That’s a fundamentalist’s brain boiling somewhere

Guess that answers the question about this emergent and where he stands on the five fundamentals: I’m a big ol’ heretic. How can I be a heretic and a believer at the same time? Simple, Jesus is my rabbi and I follow His teaching. That’s it. And, that’s really all it takes to be a Christian. Tomorrow, we’ll take a look at some of the leading voices in Emergence and see where they come down on this issue.