Friday, January 02, 2015

Bad Reasons To Oppose Illegal Immigration

1. A belief that there are too many Mexicans here.

2. A too-rigid view of the benefits of citizenship.

3. An irrational fear that the presence of too many Mexicans (or whomever) will make the transmission of distinctly American values and traditions impossible (because America is linked with whiteness).

4. Because it will help the Democrats. The Democrats always (stupidly) think they are on the verge of a permanent majority. It'd be funny, if they weren't so earnest.

5. Because Republicans In Name Only also support it. The sun shines on a dog's behind sometimes. Chuck Hagel is not the definition of "incorrect."

Wednesday, December 31, 2014

Good Point

Chilling stuff. Literally.

Define Your Terms, Feminist Edition

I'm not a feminist. I'm going to define the term, and then you'll understand why. 

Feminism is a political movement, the goal of which is to subjugate men to women. That's what it is. If you want to talk about what most people want it to mean, and all manner of ancillary desires that people have (most of which I share, by the way), we can do that. But numerous problems faced by women which induce them--and a fair number of men--to call themselves "feminists" does not mean it is defined accurately in that case.

For most people, feminism means recognizing the dignity and status of women. It means speaking out against sexual violence. It means encouraging girls to learn math and science (and everything else), or even play sports. I'm OK with all this, to a point. And feminists know this about most of us, which is why they like their movement being associated with all these things.

But you need to understand: these are just means to an end, for the real feminist. That's why I'm not one. 

Tuesday, December 30, 2014

The New Puritans (Way Worse Than The Old Ones)

There's a show I love called, "Criminal Minds." It's about a "Behavioral Analysis Unit" of the FBI that profiles serial killers and other violent offenders. We've been touched by violent crime in our family, so we have a great interest and admiration for what law enforcement does in this area. Great show.

Anyway, there was a killer on the show who was murdering young women because of unresolved guilt over same-sex attraction, AND his parents sent him for "reparative therapy," where he was forced to watch pornography, and raped by a woman. It's so absurd, no wonder they think we Christians are insane.

I could lodge objections against some forms of so-called "nouthetic counseling" all day long, but bottom line, this craziness doesn't fit any "pray away the gay" ideas I know of! In any case, I may just scream if I am subjected to one more consequentialist argument this week. (specifically, that it's OK to be committing homosexual acts, because at least you won't be a guilty, gay, serial killer)

There was a great moment though, in this otherwise absurd secularist morality play: The killer went back to murder his own father, and, being confronted by the agents that he didn't have to do it, Agent Rossi said: (roughly) "Listen, man. I know he only told you part of the story. What about this other part? 'Love one another, as I have loved you'?" The guy gave up the weapon. I darn near cried, I'm telling you. There's power in the words of Jesus. There is limitless power in Jesus. As long as you can still hear the words of Jesus, no jam is too big. You can take that to the bank.

I don't want any kids disowned or hurt. Let me say that clearly, in case somebody from the University of Chicago with an axe to grind doesn't understand. But there is a panoply of evil that is no better, even if it's popular. You don't love your son or daughter by "accepting" their homosexuality; they aren't loving themselves, either. And we'll all know this without question when the (adopted) children of homosexual couples are no longer silenced.

Born Is The King Of Israel (Lk 2:22-35)

I could very well be imagining things; I can't say I felt totally contemplative in reading this Gospel. Still, the things which kept sticking out to me were "your people Israel" and, "the consolation of Israel." I can't get away from the joy and the sadness of what it must've been like, to wait, knowing that the transgressions of the covenant left God's People with a very circuitous route to the experience of His mercy. Simeon was faithful Israel, in his own way, carrying around in his body, and in his yearning, the death of Christ.

And Mary is faithful Israel par excellence. We don't need to wonder at foolish questions, like whether Mary could die for us; she is not the Savior. We have an impoverished view of our God and Lord, in fact, if the only thing we love Him for is his sinlessness. In any case, if we don't see that we participate in what God is doing for His People Israel, we have no idea how great the New Covenant is. Most of us reading this are Isaiah's "people walking in darkness." We have no earthly business being in on this party, and yet, we are. God restored his covenant people, and he invited the riff-raff (us) to fill out the crowd. Mary gets a share in the Cross, not because she is equal to her Son, but because He loves her. That's what Jesus always does with His loved ones; we'd better get used to it.

Isaiah prophesied, "He shall see his offspring; they shall prolong his days," and we read in St. Paul, "so that he might be the firstborn among many brethren." That's us again. Are you ready to think that the joy of seeing you in Heaven carried Jesus through the darkness of the Passion? That's how much he loves us! If you haven't heard that in awhile, well, there you go.

I knew someone who hated the worship song "Above All," because he thought it was too self-centered. Fair enough; in some contexts, he might have a point. But consider the chorus:

Crucified, laid behind a stone
You lived to die, rejected and alone
Like a rose, trampled on the ground
You took the fall*
And thought of me
Above all.

This is actually true. It just is. God is big enough that every single person is valuable enough to be the center of His attention simultaneously. Some of you live in big houses, or have smartphones, and you can't rest until you revile yourself sufficiently. The only thing stupid about this is that self-abasement isn't a material thing, unless you are using it to help others. Anyway, despise yourself for the right reasons.

And know that the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob loves you and me so much that He came in human flesh to break the chains of whatever is holding us back.

*I don't think the Father was punishing the Son for us. That is heresy. But He did swallow up all our sins with His gift of love to the Father on the Cross. Well, it's complicated. "He was crushed for our iniquities," true. But I want to conceive of that in a non-Calvinistic way. Ahem.

Monday, December 29, 2014

5 Amy Grant Thoughts

5. Her pop albums--namely "Heart In Motion" and "House Of Love"--are better than the Christian music that made her famous.

4. I love the title track "House Of Love," but it makes me uncomfortable. Is there a non-judgmental way to say, "Divorce and re-marriage make me uncomfortable, because they're wrong"?

3. I know someone who almost asked out Amy Grant, because he literally had no idea who she was. (Of course, there's a big difference in age, but that proves that she has remained absurdly beautiful for a very long time.)

2. I was going to say, "How come Amy Grant and Kenny Loggins never had a duet?" but they did: "Return To Pooh Corner."

1. I have like 50 songs I think are the Greatest Song Ever, but one of them surely is "I Will Remember You."

Yes! Please Read This!

This. 1000 times. In other news, I'm still not linking Joe Carter. Acton Institute, are you paying attention?