Tag Archives: religion

Am I A Bad Person For Being Happy That Someone Died?

14 Apr

When I heard the news today that the pirates who were holding an American captain hostage had been killed by U.S. Navy snipers, I felt happy.  I know in a god and Jesus view, this probably wasn’t my finest hour.

Yet, the news that the captain was freed and the threat vanquished was just what the doctor ordered for us all.  First off, perhaps because of the success of the Johnny Depp movies, someone didn’t get the message that piracy went out of fashion hundreds of years ago.  It was high time that this message was delivered clearly.

Second, it was such a tidy ending.  Life is so complicated these days.  And here was a movie scripted ending for all of us Americans (and many other nation’s citizens who have also been victimized by these thugs) to cheer on.

It was also a great beginning for President Obama.  Joe Biden said he’d be tested.  And, while it wasn’t done for the purpose of challenging Obama, it was the President’s first foreign policy test.  Consider him as passed with flying colors.  Here was a anti-Iraq War candidate not hesitating to use force when appropriate.  I suspect any terrorists or thugs with anti-American agendas took note. 

But it really is just a beginning.  My hope is that nations working together can find a way to solve the problem of piracy.  Perhaps installing a working government in Somalia would be a good first step.

Finally, there is definitely a skit or at least a funny movie scene in the fate of the fourth pirate.  The way I read it the fourth pirate didn’t die with his comrades because he was on board a Navy vessel negotiating with the U.S. military.  Can’t you just see the scene where the Navy guys get the news that all the pirates have been shot dead and the last pirate is oblivious to his absolute loss of leverage and still demanding things?  Talk about being Punk’d!

Of course, laughing at the loss of any human life is not a good thing.  The three dead men probably had people who cared for them and for the religiously inclined, souls as well.  It’s a tragedy it ever got to where it got to.  That said, I simply don’t think the President or military had much other choice.  And those signing up to pirate have seen confirmation that when you play with fire, sometimes you will get burned.

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Wait For It! The Pope Has More Bad Advice Coming Soon!

18 Mar

The Pope is clearly on a path to prove that he has little real world relevance.  Yesterday, he advised that spreading condoms in Africa would do nothing to stem soaring aids rates there.  In fact, the Pontiff went on to say that condom distribution would only make the aids problem worse.

Here are five more gems we hear the Pope is ready to offer as guidance to his flock and anyone else who has time to waste listening:

#5 – Don’t worry about the environment.  God gave us the Earth to use.  When we’re done, he’ll take it back and upgrade us to something better!

#4 – More guns = more safety.  Oh wait, that’s that other infallible body – the NRA!

#3 – Go with boxers over briefs.  You’ll breathe more and be able to be more fruitful and multiple unless you use condoms!  Did I mention they’re causing AIDS??

#2 – Book burning?  Why is that such a bad thing?

#1 – Movie sequels always suck compared to the original.  Catch it on DVD and save some money which you could donate to the church of a certain guy I know…

God Tells Kurt Warner To Stay In Arizona & To Keep Boldin In The Fold!

4 Mar

God’s no fool.

When God speaks, it’s a good idea to listen.  For anyone who’s been willing to listen, Kurt Warner has been telling them that God will let him know what to do with the next chapter of his amazing life.  First, God told Kurt Warner not to retire.

Now, God’s giving Kurt some pretty good advice on how to use his leverage during free agency.  Kurt and his wife visited the division rival 49ers recently and in response Arizona immediately bumped its offer up for Warner.

Warner has instructed his agent to counter and it’s being reported that part of their counter involves Warner willingly given up two million dollars over two years to help the Cardinals re-work Anquan Boldin’s contract. 

God knows his football.  God knows Kurt doesn’t belong in San Francisco running Mike Singletary’s run oriented attack next season.  God also knows that good receivers make good quarterbacks and vice versa.  And so for that reason, God apparently told Kurt Warner to offer up bucks to help retain Boldin.

If the Cardinals have truly turned a corner, they’ll figure out a way to keep Warner and Boldin happy.  Nothing would make Warner feel better about coming back than knowing he was returning with a full arsenal.  Looks like God is working hard to make sure that happens.

My guess is he’s got some serious money riding on Warner capping his career with a second Lombardi trophy, but what do I know God doesn’t talk to me…

PS – Note to Anquan.  If this all works out, might be a good idea to get Kurt a little something and thanking God might be appropriate too.

John McCain Did Some Smart Things Tonight!

5 Sep

John McCain gave his acceptance speech tonight and despite not being a naturally skilled orator, he did some very smart things in my eyes.  After the previous days’ speeches reinforced all my preconceived bad notions about Republicans and Sarah Palin failing to inspire trust in her VP cred, McCain shifted gears tonight and scored with me and perhaps others who are undecided.

I’m still leaning Obama’s way, but McCain said a lot I wanted to hear.  First, he was civil and respectful to his opponents.  He quickly established that he wanted to reach out beyond the GOP for solutions.  He hit the theme of working together twice in his speech – at the top and bottom.  He struck me as sincere in that desire.  I find it interesting that in this election each candidate is professing that we “have more in common than the things that divide us”.  Could this be the beginning of change regardless of who wins?  A boy can dream that somehow we’ll break our long nation nightmare of gridlock and get back to solving big problems instead of arguing over little details I guess.

McCain zeroed in on the concerns of common Americans.  Smart move.  I’m still not sold the GOP itself is anything but a front for corporate America and the already wealthy, but these days are the Democrats all that different?  However, I think what John McCain demonstrated tonight was a real understanding of what the rest of us are going through each day.  The current president has yet to achieve that.  The reason of course, is because George W doesn’t understand what we are all faced with.  He’s never had to.

McCain was smart too to say flat out that he “hates war”.  That was a huge relief to me.  I’ve never questioned that either candidate would hesitate to use force if they felt it was warranted.  But, with McCain, I have an open question on whether he’d use it as a truly last option.  The current president and his team has forgotten that part of what makes America great is that our goal isn’t to start fights, but to take them on only when there are no other better options.  Tonight, I feel a little more secure that McCain isn’t looking to start new wars senselessly.  I believe that his experiences make him much more sensitive to the human costs of conflict than the current administration, most of whom actively avoided service and then went all rah rah for it the minute they had the power to give the go order and be safely out of harm’s way.

Finally, I like that he blamed both Democrats and Republican’s for DC’s failings.  He surprised me by blatantly saying that Republicans (who came to power in the 90s) let Washington change them instead of the other way around.  While I still shudder at the memory of the Gingrich revolution and disagreed with its goals, I gained more respect for John McCain due to his calling out the GOP for their failure to stick to their principles.

As I wrote last night, America owes John McCain a debt of gratitude for his service.  America doesn’t owe him the presidency.  He will need to earn that.  His smart moves tonight may have him on that path.

As for my own struggle, I think it’s fair to say that I like John McCain more than I did yesterday.  He’s still got a shot with me, but there are so many questions.  I can’t help worrying about his record of voting so often with George Bush.  I also wonder how much of the stuff I was impressed by is lip service.  I will likely never feel comfortable with his choice of VP.  And finally, my worry is that electing John McCain means keeping in power a party that is largely stocked with people who want to ban books, ban sex ed despite higher pregnancy rates where it is banned, and generally seem skeptical/hostile to intellectual thought and faiths other than their own.

After all, e can’t solve everything by chanting “USA, USA” or invoking Jesus.  God helps those that helps themselves it’s said.  God didn’t give us our brains for nothing.  God knew what he was doing.  I wish the GOP would have more faith in our ability to think for ourselves.  Indeed, that’s why God gave us free will.

John McCain’s going to have a tough time winning my vote I guess it’s fair to say.  But, then again he’s won tougher fights…

They’re Dropping Like Flies! (And Why Are Religious People So Mean?)

23 May

Pity John McCain.  He’s spent all week dumping lobbyists from his campaign only to have to throw his top spiritual adviser overboard today.

Guess the question now is “is anyone actually still officially working on the McCain campaign?”.  Must be getting mighty lonely for the “maverick” senator these days.  Then again, maybe he has some company on the other side of this race. 

Let’s take a look.

First up, lobbyists.  For a guy who’s made a career out of being a maverick (no annoying quote marks this time), it turns out John McCain is a lot like every politician.  I can’t really say that I blame him all that much.

I truly believe McCain is his own man much of the time.  In part, it’s the system that forces people like McCain to play the game.  In part, it’s ambition.  Whether personal or for the greater good, if you want to get things done, you have to play the game by DC’s rules.  And DC’s rules include lobbyists.

It’s interesting that Obama’s campaign has jabbed at McCain over the lobbyist issue.  I’m no journalist or insider, but my guess is that the Obama camp is playing with fire.  As interconnected as everything is in politics, it will come as no surprise if revelations come out about the people on Barack Obama’s campaign having lobbying backgrounds.

Call the lobbyist issue in favor of Obama, for now…

Next topic – mean, maybe crazy religious people!

All of us who were sane and sober over the last few months, know all about Reverend Jeremiah Wright and the challenge he’s been to Barack Obama’s campaign.   It seems to have died down now and perhaps it will turn out to be good for Obama that it came up so early in the process instead of during the general election.  Yet, you can’t help but feel that the Obama camp is just one sensational Youtube clip away from being right back at square one having to explain Jeremiah Wright.

As for McCain, he has at least two crazy religious guys whose endorsement he’s been proud to garner.  Reverend John Hagee, of course, is the guy he threw overboard today.  After accepting Hagee’s endorsement, McCain ended up having to defend some of Hagee’s charmingly misguided hateful statements about the Catholic Church, the city of New Orleans and others.  In comparison to the Wright controversy, the original Hagee controversy died down quickly.  Too quickly perhaps.

Speaking of sensational video clips, when a clip of a 1990s Hagee preaching about how his god had put Hitler on Earth to do god’s bidding, the controversy re-ignited and forced McCain’s hand.  After all, if you’re running for president of the United States, it’s tough to be in bed with a guy who thinks Hitler was an instrument of god.

You get the feeling that the controversy over the holy men in Obama and McCain’s lives isn’t done yet.  My gut is that people will always understand, if not respect, selling your soul to the devil.  People will see the politics at play in McCain looking for Hagee’s endorsement.

With Barack Obama, Jeremiah Wright is a personal thing.  As much as anyone might like or admire Senator Obama, it’s tough to understand how he could have just sat there for twenty years in Wright’s church hearing nothing.

Despite the upheaval today, call this one in favor of John McCain.

Final topic!  Why ARE religious people so mean?

Listen, I grew up Catholic in the 1970s.  Despite what you might have heard about alter boys, in my parish it was all about the New Testament and a loving God.  What is it about politics that attracts people with hard line religious beliefs?

Hagee’s god, when not enlisting Hitler as a sidekick, is busy destroying New Orleans due to him being peeved by the sin going on in the Big Easy.  Falwell and/or Pat Robertson’s god is busy knocking down the Twin Towers to punish us.  Rob Parsley (McCain’s “spiritual guide”) thinks the United States was created to destroy Islam.  Do these guys love their Old Testament or what?

Here’s my guess.  It’s all about being right.  It’s an addictive thing.  Ever had the experience where something bad came true that you’d predicted?  Yet, even though it’s a bad thing for you, on some level you’re pleased because you can say you’re right?  If it’s nice to be right in a bad circumstance, imagine feeling right all the time.  Pretty sweet!

Intolerance rocks!  Not only do you get the satisfaction of being right all the time, but you save so much time.  When like Hagee and his ilk, you see the world as completely black and white, it gets a lot easier to understand.  There’s no reason to be intellectually curious. There’s only right and wrong.

We’re right.  You’re either for or against us.  Any of this sounding a bit familiar?

Hate and war become natural.  There’s no need for silly things like compassion or trying to understand other points of view.

Frankly, it frees up a lot of your schedule.  And that’s why religious people tend to be so mean.

Update! The Strange Bathroom Habits of Co-Workers!

2 May

As some of you who’ve visited these pages before know, I’m fascinated by workplace bathroom behavior.  Previously, I’ve twice described the adventures of a mystery man co-worker who seems to have confused the company toilet stall with a reading library.

But recently, I saw something else that perplexed me.  A male co-worker of mine has repeatedly done this.  He comes into the bathroom.  So far so good.  He washes his hands.  OK, I’m feeling there’s something slightly unmasculine about making a special trip into the bathroom of a white collar office just to wash your hands, but whatever.  I mean it’s not like he’s out there doing lube jobs or digging ditches.  Why, even in this sensitive age, does a man doing office work make a special trip just to wash his hands?

Anyway, that’s where this guy always gets me.  Just when his behavior has me obsessing over the hand washing, there’s a twist.  After washing his hands.  And remember I did say AFTER.  He then uses the urinal and exits without re-washing his hands.

WTF is that about?

I’m a spur of the moment guy very comfortable with improvising and ad-libbing.  Little else has gotten me this far through life after all.  But really, everything has a limit.  Some things are meant to be done in a certain order.  It’s not my rules.  It’s God’s rules.  Man was meant to do certain things in certain ways.  God says so. 

Can I get an amen?

And one of God’s rules is first you pee and then you wash your hands.  As a parent I know that.  If you are a parent or had parents you know that.  It’s the way it works.

How did my co-worker miss that important life lesson?  We’ll never know for sure.  But, I’m quite sure that somewhere God, whether you believe he is loving or vengeful, is very concerned.  Free will is one thing.  Peeing after washing your hands and then not re-washing…

That’s an abomination!

 

PS – This post is dedicated to my beautiful wife, who for some reason finds my posts on workplace bathroom habits entertaining.  I love a woman with a slightly twisted sense of humor.