No, Dennis Prager Does NOT Rape His Wife

sailor_kissing_nurse_2Are you aware of types of behavior that are considered rape which, in my mind & anyone else’s mind who might still be in touch w/ REALITY, do NOT constitute rape.
When I became aware of this I was very angry. Why? Because women who actually experience this heinous crime are trivialized.

Case in point would be the French leftist females who call themselves feminists think a statue that depicts that famous photograph of a sailor kissing a woman needs to be destroyed because it represents sexual assault. (I see the scenes of Disney movies edited to have Prince Charming ask permission to kiss Snow White or Phillip ask permission to kiss Aurora.  Those guys are going to wait a long time cuz neither is going to wake up until they are actually kissed.)

So, of course, in response to Dennis Prager calling American feminists out in regard to the “culture of rape” narrative, they subsequently demonize Dennis. (see link below.) Why?  Because to admit their trivialization of actual sexual assault would perhaps cause them to think critically about their lies….and, gasp, realize the damage they’ve done.

I want to say unequivocally that the French women and their American counterparts do NOT speak for the majority of American women.

This also appears to be a world wide narrative. If you’ve read The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo you were exposed to some staggering statistics about rape in Sweden. I researched those statistics & it appears, among other things, that if a woman has sex with a guy one night and decides LATER that she did not really want to, the dude can be charged with rape. Do YOU think that’s right?

You may think Julian Assange is the scum of the earth, however, looking very closely at the Swedish charges of rape against him gave me pause. We don’t know the whole story but the reports I’ve read don’t add up to rape. He may indeed be guilty but the wide ranging behaviors that constitute rape according to Swedish law are suspect.

If you look closely at what kinds of behavior constitute rape in the feminist narrative you will see that an unwanted kiss is considered sexual assault.

Which brings me to this article written by Dennis Prager, titled The Left’s Tactics- A Personal Example.

An excerpt:

“First, truth is a not a left-wing value (though, of course, some individuals on the left have great integrity). If you don’t know that, you cannot understand the left. Truth is a conservative value (though, of course, some individuals on the right lie). From the Bolsheviks to today’s left-wing, lying is normal. Not one left-wing comment or article (except for the HuffingtonPost reference to the MIT report) even dealt with the issue of the truth of the claim that one out of every five female college students is sexually assaulted/raped, or the truth of the charge that our universities are a “culture of rape.”

Indeed truth is not something the left-wing folks seem to value.  They appear to prefer the convenient lie and emotional manipulation.  When you call them on this many respond viciously as this article points out.

Seriously, Snow White AND Sleeping Beauty would never wake up….unless they signed a Snow Whitecontract BEFORE eating the apple and pricking the finger….notarized by a feminist lawyer.

Even more seriously, I think we should think twice before we trivialize the pain and trauma women experience when they are violently assaulted.

 

Posted in Collectivist Narrative, Feminist Bullies, World View | Tagged , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Climate Change: Science or Politics?

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Whether it be the CIA, the Mafia, BOSS, the SS, the NKVD or any other instrument of coercion, once its growing power puts it beyond the reach of John Citizen and the Commonweal, the lamps of freedom go out and darkness descends.” (G.A. Clayton)

I’ve been called: flat-earther, denier, idiot, brainwashed and a whole host of other names over the past few years.  Yeah, I know name calling isn’t really conducive to dialogue and vigorous debate but it seems those who disagree with my questions about their “settled science” have no other comeback.

This name calling happens every single time I pose a question or offer an opinion.  It is sometimes couched in seemingly civil language but the underlying message is that I am a fool if I do not buy into their “settled science.”

The fact that they  resort to this type of response does not make me feel stupid or embarrassed.  It makes me question them all the more. When some of them give me the talking points they’ve gotten from 3-minute sound bites I respond with some fact or issue I’ve read about.

That’s when it usually gets ugly.

Today I read an exceptional column by Gary McCallister on the Daily Sentinel website.  I’d like you to read it:

Pitfalls of government intrusion on science

As unbelievable as it sounds, there hasn’t always been a National Science Foundation, Department of Agriculture, National Institute of Health, Environmental Protection Agency or a slew of other government agencies whose purpose is to support the sciences. 

(Since this column is for the lay audience, I should point out that the word “slew,” in this context, is a technical, scientific term derived from the Gaelic “Slough” which means “a large multitude.” This should not be confused with the use of the term as a verb describing a dangerous, uncontrollable sliding motion, or a noun with the alternate meaning of sloppy, muddy ground, despite the seeming applicable definition of the latter.)

In fact, much of our foundational knowledge of the sciences was pursued and discovered by men with little or no government support. Often scientific discovery was the result of singular curiosity. (Although curious, I personally haven’t discovered any foundational science, but I never had government support either.  I guess this makes me about a third of a scientist. I do appreciate CMU because they tolerated my research as long as I didn’t get in the way.) 

Anyway, the unfunded approach usually led to accurate information because ensuing argument and verification between scientists led to better and more accurate understanding. Historically, much scientific discovery has also been driven by commercial interests as well. I have received funds from business for research. Contrary to popular opinion, it’s probably more lucrative to fund research than to do it. Once again, though, failure of theories or ideas causes financial loss, and losing money generates accuracy and honesty. 

Today a lot of research is funded by the government. However, government involvement in scientific research carries a certain risk. That risk is exemplified in a dense but remarkable book written by Zhores A. Medvedev and published in 1969. The book is entitled “The Rise and Fall of T.D. Lysenko.” I don’t actually recommend the book, as it is dull and convoluted with what many would think is irrelevant Russian political events under Stalin. I suppose the fact that I actually read the book says something about my dullness and convolutedness. 

The book is pertinent to our modern world because T.D. Lysenko, through politically influenced science that supported communist ideology, set Russian genetic research back by a century. In fact, Russian genetic research and agriculture have never caught up with the West. In the process, his fraudulent theories also caused the death of perhaps hundreds of thousands of Russians from famine. (I, on the other hand, have never really harmed humanity through my research. I suppose the jury is still out about the value of this column to science.)

When the government is allowed to determine what is scientifically true, there is often no discussion, no alternative point of view, little verification by independent experimentation, and no economic failure that would help verify accuracy and reliability might be delayed. As a reviewer of the Lysenko book observed, “When fear born of tyranny stalks the land, men become corrupted and perverted along with their science and society. Whether it be the CIA, the Mafia, BOSS, the SS, the NKVD or any other instrument of coercion, once its growing power puts it beyond the reach of John Citizen and the Commonweal, the lamps of freedom go out and darkness descends.” (G.A. Clayton)

I like this quote because it makes it sound like science is really important to freedom. That sounds a lot more inspirational than just being curious or making money. In reality, I am not entirely sure that science is important to freedom, but I am very sure that freedom is essential to science. 

When alternate points of view, discussion, or testing against the actual world are discouraged by regulations, withholding funding, or political-style informational campaigns, science suffers. There is a whole slew of government agencies involved in science today. A slew is probably too many.

Gary McCallister, gmccallister@bresnan.net, is a professor emeritus of biological sciences at Colorado Mesa University. 

As some of the comments indicate, there is concern about the motivations by private funding of studies as well. However, Mr. McCallister gives us something to THINK about when it comes to government agencies dictating policies that impact us in significant ways based on science that is anything but settled.

No amount of insults, derision or political power and control can negate reality.  Shutting down debate and alternate points of view by silencing those who would point out the inconsistencies in regard to the “settled science” does nothing to settle the issue.

Bottom line? This is yet another example of the need for us to restore honor and integrity in our culture.  There will still be people who will impose their agenda on scientific discovery but perhaps we will be able to hold them accountable.

As Mr. McCallister says, freedom is essential to science.  If we add honor and integrity I think we will all win.

(Note:  I love his column.  You might want to check some others out as well.)

You might also want to read this as an example of government intrusion.

Posted in Global Warming Theories, Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Everybody’s Talking At Me But I Can’t Hear All of Them

Everybody’s talking at me
I don’t hear a word they’re saying
Only the echoes of my mind

Everybody’s Talking by Harry Nilsson

I found a post titled: Facebook Is Censoring Your Feeds and This is Why! I would alter that title to read: Facebook is Censoring Your Feeds and This is Why It’s Hurting Us All.

The first video explains something I’ve been pointing out on my various Facebook pages.

Viva Capitalism!  I understand a business needing to generate revenue.  Got that.  However, this guy makes some pretty good points as to why it is a bad idea for any platform to TELL YOU what you want to see and what you do not want to see.  It’s SOCIAL media but you gotta PAY to actually share socially!

The second video is the one I really want you to think about.

This guy is a Progressive and my experiences in many ways confirm his premise.  He takes it a step further to point out the danger in this “personalizing” of what information we are permitted to see.

Yes, you cannot possibly read through all those posts on Facebook, however, do we really want an algorithm controlling what we see?  Ed Pariser says that Editors have a set of ethics that an algorithm does not.  Today that is debatable but that is a discussion for another post.

His points should anger you…..and chill you to the bone.  Ed says that this happens to his Conservative and his Progressive friends but I would say that the experience of Conservatives is much, much different.  Yes, both feeds are personalized according to the individuals online behavior but I’d be interested in knowing if his Progressive friends have had trouble sharing things.  Have their posts been censored by FB?  Have their pages been inaccessible during certain intense news cycles? I would bet not.

That, however, is not the bottom line.  The bottom line is that we all end up living in an echo chamber of our closely held views and beliefs.  I believe that the testing of your world view needs to happen to either strengthen those beliefs or present you with views you had never considered….that can lead to an alteration of your views.

I’ve said many times that there are two world views at war for the hearts and minds of We the People.  Our Constitutional Republic was built on the belief that the war should take place in the Arena of Ideas.  For this to happen we need access to all the information about those ideas and their possible and actual consequences.

I believe most people hear more from the Progressive world view than the Conservative world view.  When they DO hear a Conservative view it is usually in an attempt to demonize said view and the entire group of people who hold those beliefs. This perhaps works in reverse as well, however, the MSM is clearly broadcasting the Progressive World View the loudest.

We have gotten to the point where entertaining an alternate view means we have to abandon all of our Principles and Values.  We have also gotten to the point where we are screaming at each other and neither side is hearing any of it.  They only hear the echoes of their minds.  All of which gets us nowhere. Our discourse has become destructive and many times juvenile.  Some read a post that points out a concern about those who are violating the law of our land, our Constitution, and the only response is something on the order of: “they are all idiots” or worse.  Yeah, THAT’s going to help.

I cannot even remember the last time someone who holds a different world view than I do was able to discuss things without personal insults.  It seems it is becoming the default response of many Conservative voices.  This may be a reaction to the attacks from the Progressive voices but it is still not useful.  There are things I’d like to share with those who disagree with me but I know the insults and ad hominem attacks will turn them off even before they get to the information I want them to think about.

This should frighten us all.  This kind of behavior alienates us from one another and the things we can truly come together on never get considered.  While we are yelling at each other there are people who are using that cacophony of voices to silently amass the power to achieve ends which would horrify us all.

Which brings me to an article I found about People Who Were Erased From History.  This appears to be a favorite pastime of Dictators throughout history.  And you thought Orwell’s 1984 was FICTION! Somewhere behind every dictator is an army of Winstons changing history.

If you do not think this could possibly happen now….here in the United States of America…you are sadly mistaken.

It already is.

Posted in Christian World View, Collectivist Narrative, Media Bias, Remembering History, Social Media, World View | Tagged , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Who’s up for mapping ‘diversity data’ in every U.S. neighborhood?

When I lived in CA a Care Facility Opened for Seniors. Problem was, it was ONLY for Chinese seniors. There was a bit of an outcry, mostly because if one had been opened for Caucasian only there would have been an earthquake as a result of the Progressives stamping their feet and throwing their tantrums.

Let us think about this, though….at the time I agreed that this portion of our senior population would definitely feel more comfortable around people who shared their culture, cuisine and language.

This “fair-housing” regulation is just the tip of the insane world view of Progressives. I like Doug’s suggestion, however, I think I’d like to start with George Soros’ neighborhood, then move on to Kerry’s and then to Nancy Pelosi’s. Good idea!!

Posted in Agenda 21, Collectivist Narrative, Global Governance, Planned Economy/Central Planning, Progressive Bullies, World View | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

The Face of Fundamental Transformation

A short video….that provides information and food for thought…..and you get to listen to some great music while you ponder.

No, it does not cover everything in seven minutes….but it provides a pretty good summary of the things an informed citizen needs to think about.

Posted in Agenda 21, Balanced Budget & Debt Ceiling, Christian World View, Collectivist Narrative, Economy and National Debt, Freedom of Religion, Global Governance, Global Warming Theories, Government Regulations and the Constitution, Gun control, Islamic/Socialist/Communist Revolutionaries, Media Bias, Planned Economy/Central Planning, Restoration of our Constitutional Republic, World View | Tagged , , , , , | Leave a comment

[VIDEO] D-Day Anniversary: Ronald Reagan speech, 1984

Ronald Reagan’s thoughts on D-Day. A great post worth a read.

Flyover Culture

D-Day: American soldiers

“The men of Normandy had faith that what they were doing was right, faith that they fought for all humanity, faith that a just God would grant them mercy on this beachhead or on the next. It was the deep knowledge — and pray God we have not lost it — that there is a profound, moral difference between the use of force for liberation and the use of force for conquest. You were here to liberate, not to conquer, and so you and those others did not doubt your cause. And you were right not to doubt.”

“Here, in this place where the West held together, let us make a vow to our dead. Let us show them by our actions that we understand what they died for. Let our actions say to them the words for which Matthew Ridgway listened: “I will not fail thee nor forsake thee.”

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Bloom Where You are Planted

We discussed a video this morning in church that helped me focus on what it is I wanted this post to say.  It is a TED talk given by Brene Brown: The Power of Vulnerability. It is 20 minutes long.  If you don’t watch it right away, do yourself a favor and watch it another time.

Of course, one of the things that struck me first was that in trying to decide how she was to be described to potential audiences, the event planner wanted to call her a Storyteller.  I believe that is an excellent description of what she does.  The power of story is a critical tool for whatever you wish to achieve. Her realization that perhaps “stories are just data with a soul” allowed the researcher in her to believe you could have both things when you use story to convey your message.

941199_4699814061422_1946785697_nThis brings to mind what I began writing about in this post.  It was inspired by a sermon by Alistair Begg called, “Bloom Where You are Planted.” 

He discusses 1 Corinthians 7:17-21.   In this section Paul takes on two topics that were very controversial and probably lead to some uncivil debate.  You know,  like some topics we try to discuss in present times. The overarching issue discussed is “status.”

We all would agree that we want harmony with one another.  Songs are written, poems are composed, books explain, and speeches are given that point to our need for harmony.  However, there are barriers to achieving said harmony. God is able to overcome barriers as He works in the heart of everyone of his children.  Sort of like “restoring honor starts here”…with me. Alistair says:

“God is able to overcome barriers as He works in the heart of both Jew and Gentile.  He doesn’t need our help in trying to sort it out. God does not desire that amazing, sought after cultural demise of ethnicity of that which He established in a world for His own sovereign purpose in the variegation of humanity.  And it is a dead end street to try to bring about that reconciliation from the outside in.  And you see it is only in the Church…that there is any hope in our culture for that harmony for which men and women long….longing that we may all be one, but on the basis of what?”

We cannot use the world’s agenda to make the changes that only God can create, but accepting this does not introduce the chaos of having everyone conform to arbitrary external standards.  Alistair explains:

You ought to retain the place in this life that the Lord has assigned to you…God can address the issue of race. God can address the issue of status. God can address the issue of education.  It’s not dealt with by some kind of pseudo-communism.  You cannot do that. It doesn’t work. You can’t make everybody the same. God never intended it to be so.

I think the bottom line for Paul was that the goal is not to change your external circumstances as much as it is to allow God to change the attitude of your heart. Christ came to change the hearts of individuals, not to change them into “discontented revolutionaries.” He came to change their hearts….one at a time…where they were. THIS is the way Jesus wished to render religious and social barriers null and void.

We, as Christians, need to not look to changing external circumstances first, but to the power of the Gospel to change hearts and lives.  So, we bloom where we are planted because God assigned us our place and there is something that we are to do that is something that only we can do. That changing of our hearts gives us connections to God and to each other.

With regard to the connection we all need with others, Brene says in her talk that she came upon an obstacle to that connection:

And it turned out to be shame. And shame is really easily understood as the fear of disconnection: Is there something about me that, if other people know it or see it, that I won’t be worthy of connection? The things I can tell you about it: it’s universal; we all have it. The only people who don’t experience shame have no capacity for human empathy or connection. No one wants to talk about it, and the less you talk about it the more you have it. What underpinned this shame, this “I’m not good enough,” — which we all know that feeling: “I’m not blank enough. I’m not thin enough, rich enough, beautiful enough, smart enough, promoted enough.” The thing that underpinned this was excruciating vulnerability, this idea of, in order for connection to happen, we have to allow ourselves to be seen, really seen…..”

There was only one variable that separated the people who have a strong sense of love and belonging and the people who really struggle for it. And that was, the people who have a strong sense of love and belonging believe they’re worthy of love and belonging. That’s it.”

When talking about those people who seemed to believe they were worthy of connection Brene goes on to say:

The other thing that they had in common was this: They fully embraced vulnerability. They believed that what made them vulnerable made them beautiful. They didn’t talk about vulnerability being comfortable, nor did they really talk about it being excruciating — as I had heard it earlier in the shame interviewing. They just talked about it being necessary. They talked about the willingness to say, “I love you” first, the willingness to do something where there are no guarantees, the willingness to breathe through waiting for the doctor to call after your mammogram. They’re willing to invest in a relationship that may or may not work out. They thought this was fundamental.”

I believe being able to be vulnerable in order to travel into places where uncivil debate lives is important.  That is why I write this blog.  It is uncomfortable sometimes, but I am willing to speak about issues in an environment where debate is many times not debate so much as it is a shouting match with insults hurled at opponents with abandon.  When I am there I try my best to attend to the attitude of my heart and I believe that my faith in God is the only thing that helps me speak the Truth in Love…as well as embrace that vulnerability that is sometimes so very difficult.

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I’m Rubber You’re Glue…..

Do you remember telling those who were saying mean things to you that “whatever you say bounces off me and sticks to you?”  I think most of you do remember.  It was an attempt to not allow what others said about you to define you.

Well, we’ve grown up.  I don’t think much has changed.  Or has it? Our language has become more sophisticated but it has also become increasingly abusive.

It is getting increasingly difficult to have civil conversations.  Have you noticed that? The problem with this decrease in communication is that we all end up in those closed systems I spoke about in my post on intellectual and cognitive laziness.

But how do we speak to each other in a way that facilitates the opening of our eyes, ears and hearts? In what manner can we speak that does not lead to that glazed look that says….I’m not listening….or worse, totally shutting the message out with eyes shut tight, fingers in ears and heart hardened?

Truth without Grace is abuse

When we speak with passion and emotion we may be speaking Truth, however, in the absence of Grace we are not communicating we are attacking.  Name calling, ad hominem attacks, and crude language do not open anyone’s heart, much less their eyes and ears.

You can find many, many examples of this in our national debates on issues that spark emotion, and, as I’ve said before, it has become difficult to communicate without resorting to such tactics.  If you do not say anything “edgy” your blog post won’t get much attention.  Nor will your other social media musings.  Don’t get me wrong….I enjoy a bit of sarcasm and parody, however, when it crosses the line the message becomes less effective.

I guess it is completely human of us to behave in such a way.  We talk constantly about

wanting to hear “good” news instead of all the “bad news” yet we pay more attention to the bad news.  People pick up the magazines and newspapers with the headline about some terrible tragedy and barely notice or become quickly bored with news that could bring  joy to our hearts.

I am not saying that attending to distressing news is something we should never do.  We do have to maintain an awareness of the dangers and injustice in this world, but to completely ignore the good things is not healthy.

When we feel strongly about something we tend to let our emotions carry us into using language that is not helpful.  When you have been pushed, nudged, or poked you will eventually feel the urge to use language that does not include the concept of Grace.

Hence, we end up shouting at each other and hear and understand nothing.

The Westboro Baptist church folks come to mind.

Grace without Truth is deception

This is the part I have struggled with for years.  How does one communicate Grace in a way that does not ignore Truth?

I will take a short side trip here to explain the difference between Truth and truth.  Truth with the big T should never be compromised.  Truth with the little “t” is still true on a certain level, but it may not be actually true.  Let me explain.

In telling stories from your personal life you may remember a relative who you were really close to.  You knew them well and you knew what kind of person they were.  Bottom line that is Truth.  If, however, you remember a story about a specific incident involving them you might not remember every minute detail.  So, if your father was someone who always encouraged you and loved you unconditionally and you “recall” a conversation in which he said, “You can do anything you set your mind to” it may or may not be Truth.  But it IS truth in the sense that it is the kind of thing he would have said.  The words are not out of character for him and he probably did say something like that to you at some point.

What we need to do is communicate Truth without leaving Grace out of the equation.

We also need to attend to including Truth in our communications in which we aim to communicate Grace.

This is perhaps the most difficult task.  I often wonder how DOES one communicate a Truth that is difficult to hear and still include that concept of Grace?  I think of Dietrich Bonhoeffer trying to tell people about the atrocities going on in Nazi Germany.  How does one communicate that someone is doing something terrible without seeming to offend?

I am also reminded of something I read about Mr. Rodgers.  He was perhaps the kindest, gentlest man we’ve knew while we were growing up.  He had many good things to say and many of them were True.  However, some took exception to him stating to people who were homosexual that “God loves you just the way you are.”  That is True on one level. God does love us all.

The statement, however, leaves out the part where God gave us guidance on how to live happy and fruitful lives. There are things that we do that are harmful to ourselves and others.  I believe what many people forget part of the story  when Christ says, “let he who is without sin cast the first stone.” He also says, “go and sin no more.”

Speaking Grace without Truth is exactly like that.  It might feel good but it will not lead us to happy and productive lives.

I was visiting my son who is in college and found the following:

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I saw this on a wall that where students were permitted to make comments and place their hand prints.  I have no idea what comments were painted over.  I have no idea if they presented Truth nor do I know if they demonstrated Grace.

I do, however, see from the comments that those who shared a viewpoint that diverged from the Progressive world view of individuals who support President Obama and his policies were deemed unacceptable and covered over.

This example also shows that the individuals responding to the obliteration of their comments went from depicting their detractors as “Obama supporters” to “Obamanoids.”  I’m thinking the latter does not contribute to the dialogue.  Neither does simply painting over someone’s opinion.

This demonstrates a microcosm of what is happening nationally.  Consider, for instance, the debate about our Second Amendment.  One of the recent articles that disturbs me most is LaPierre et Le Deluge. It begins:

As I said on Current TV a couple of nights ago, I have never seen a situation in which a Congress, terrified of a particular lobby, has behaved in such open contempt of American public opinion as it’s doing now on guns.

Of course the “American Public Opinion” is linked to a poll on the Mayors Against Illegal Guns website.  This is supposed to confirm the author’s statement that the majority of NRA members agree with common sense laws with regard to firearms.

However, if you understand what Progressives REALLY mean by common sense laws and regulations you will know that it means it is just the beginning of their getting what they REALLY want.  In spite of the condescending “no one wants to take your guns” statements made by our President and the Progressives who share his world view, the ultimate goal is to basically eliminate our Second Amendment rights.

The author continues:

Wayne LaPierre may have won the week, and he may slither away without Congress doing anything this time around. But the laws of physics are such that he can’t do this forever. He’s like Louis XVI in about 1788. He may be on top now, and his hard-line posture against any and all change may serve him well for the time being; but the revolution is coming, and once it arrives, we’ll beat the NRA, and he’ll be a figure not of power but of ridicule, left to ponder the what-ifs.

Slither away? Louis XVI? This is not the first time that Conservatives who wish to restore our Constitutional Republic have been threatened directly or indirectly with the guillotine. The author goes on to insinuate that the NRA will get what it wants “over more corpses of more dead children.” In essence he refers to those who would protect their Second Amendment Rights with murderers.

I don’t see much Grace there.  Then again, Progressives do not accept the concept so I guess it is not surprising.  I understand their world view because I’ve spent the last four years learning exactly what it is that they believe.  I am frightened by what I see.

So, what we have is them following Alinsky’s rule #4: Make the enemy live up to their own book of rules.  In that contest they always seem to “win” the argument because they have “rules” but they are changeable.  Nothing with them is clearly right or wrong.  What WORKS to get them what they want is deemed the right thing to do.

How do you have a debate with someone like that if you hold a Christian world view? How do you communicate a difficult Truth with Grace to someone who does not on any level accept that Truth exists?

We are left with something referred to as “The Great Lie” in Chuck Colson’s book How Now Shall We Live:

“The Great Lie is that we have the capacity, like God, to create our own standard of right or wrong.  It is a lie repeated so often that it has become the accepted wisdom of our culture. “(page 195)

I do not believe it is wise to view our world in this way.

Colson goes on to say:

“The price for rejecting the Christian world view is that when morality is reduced to personal preferences and when no one can be held morally accountable, society quickly falls into disorder…..then, when social anarchy becomes widespread in any nation, its citizens become prime candidates for a totalitarian-style leader, or leader class, to step in and offer to fix everything.” (page 199)

That is why we need to continue to speak Truth with Grace; to be a part of the discussion even if we are attacked for doing so.  Even if it becomes dangerous to do so.

If we do not do this, who will?

Posted in Collectivist Narrative, Freedom of Religion, Gun control, Progressive Bullies, Restoration of our Constitutional Republic, World View | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

The Power of Story: The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly

A couple of years ago I wrote a post that pointed out that we often decide who “wins” a debate by basing it on whoever told the “best story.”  There is absolutely no doubt that “story” is a powerful tool and like any tool it can be misused.

I am very interested in storytelling and the ways it can enrich our lives.  We learn best and retain more if ideas and facts are presented to us in the form of a story.  So, my attention was drawn to a recent debate regarding an article written by Ben Howe. The first thing I found was at Breitbart.com titled“Another Post Begging of Good Storytelling.”  (Lisa De Pasquale) You, of course see why I clicked on the link.  I know good storytelling and I know ineffective storytelling so I thought I’d find out what this was all about.

Howe wrote:

“Instead of pulling people into a story that espouses the underlying tenets of liberty, it slaps them across the face with all of the subtlety of a campaign commercial. Rather than taking the viewer along for a first person view of how our present can develop into their future, the filmmakers opted to skip directly to the bottom of the slippery slope without describing the tumble with enough detail to create a real connection for the viewer.”

Please note that my commentary here is in relation to the points made about effective communication of values and ideas through the art of storytelling.  I cannot, nor do I wish to address the accuracy of his applying this to the “story” in question.  I wish to point out that there is good information here regardless of your reaction to what Ben Howe was saying about the movie in question. It may or may not be accurate.

I want to reinforce for Conservatives something I’ve thought for a long time:  If we do not adequately harness the power of story and use the power of social media and other types of media to share our story it will never resonate with our listeners. NEVER.

_MG_2640I tell stories to children several times each month and have been doing so for quite a few years.  One of the things I’ve learned from the professionals is that the teller does NOT tell the listener what they are supposed to LEARN from the story.  If the story is told effectively even a five-year-old will be able to make the connection.  If the teller TELLS the listener what he/she is SUPPOSED to learn the incredible power is destroyed.  You want the light bulb in their brain to light up as opposed to shining a spotlight into their eyes.

The incredibly magic thing that happens when you do this is that the listeners sometimes make a beautiful connection that you, as the teller, never even thought of. The story is then a creation of what happens when a teller and a listener engage.

Howe continues:

Well first of all, films like Hunger Games succeed because they create a suspension of disbelief. They take you into a world so far removed from our own that you become absorbed in their universe. Suspension of disbelief can be vitally important if your intention is to make a statement that you hope resonates with the viewer. By absorbing them in something so far removed from reality, and getting them to accept that reality’s rules, you have opened their mind to ideas. This doesn’t work well if the person is instead constantly nitpicking what they find unrealistic.

Darn!  Could not have presented this storytelling tenet better myself!  Is Ben a storyteller?  i1035 FW1.1As I said, you cannot tell the listener what it is they are supposed to “learn.” That is why story is so much more powerful than “lecturing” children on behaviors and values you want them to internalize. They go to the imaginary world and come back with information they never would have gotten had the teller simply told them how they should behave and what values are desirable.

In a response titled “That Goes Double for Comedy” (Iowahawk) the author states:

“If conservatives want to be in the narrative biz, they need to step up their game. And if that means criticizing the quality of work by other conservatives, then so be it.”

I brought my children up to believe that you can learn something from everyone.  Valuable information is often lost because it is coming from someone whom we do not like OR we just don’t like what it is they are saying.

I would re-frame this statement by Iowahawk to say something on the order of: if we cannot help each other become better at telling the story of Conservatism then our cause is made harder than it has to be.

Finally, in a response to Iowahawk, “Storytelling, Message, and Argument” (John Hayward) states:

“Advice to aspiring right-leaning writers of fiction: tell good and true stories, and let the audience discover their meaning.  You don’t have to “push” anything into their faces.  Do your job well, and the audience will follow your story wherever it leads.  It’s not much fun trying to win an argument with viewers and readers, when they came hoping to be entertained or intrigued.  You can’t force answers down their throats… but you can offer them the gift of questions.”

_MG_3332Which brings me to the stories that are timeless and of great value: the stories in the Bible. I think we sometimes wish that Christ had made his stories a little easier for us to interpret, but I’ve come to believe that a great set of questions gets you further than being given all the answers.

I wrote the post a few years ago about not letting “whoever tells the best story” to win, but to attend to the promotion and honing of stories that promote our world view.  A world view that is in direct conflict with the Progressive world view; a Progressive view that has the advantage of being promoted through almost all media sources.  That then leads to the silencing of opposing views and causes the consumers of the information and entertainment to become intellectually and cognitively lazy…..never questioning the accuracy of what is presented as compared to the real world.

We come to believe that “they would not lie” and/or “that cannot happen here.” However, as we can learn in Proverbs, not everyone speaks Truth and their goals are not always to find Truth.

Proverbs 18:1 (NIV)

18 An unfriendly person pursues selfish ends
    and against all sound judgment starts quarrels.

Commentary on this verse reads:

The desire of the fool is not to gain wisdom for the sake of being more righteous and just, but rather is through a proud desire to exalt self by being thought wiser than others, and so. Looked up to as above the generality of men. In his own mind, the fool separates himself from others, as being superior to them. All his efforts to gain wisdom with such a attitude, is simply an endeavor to glorify himself.

Our goal is to glorify God not to glorify ourselves.  Those two goals are mutually exclusive.

Proverbs 18:2 (NIV)

Fools find no pleasure in understanding
    but delight in airing their own opinions.

Commentary on this verse reads:

A defective heart reveals its true nature by what it hates as well as by what it loves. A fool is willing to use wisdom and understanding to further his own proud desires, but has no real delight in it simply for its own sake.

We all have defective hearts, however, if we strive to live the lives God intends for us we strive to find  and fully understand Truth even if it is difficult to hear. As the prayer says: THY will be done.

Proverbs 18:6 (NIV)

The lips of fools bring them strife,
and their mouths invite a beating.

Commentary on this verse reads:

These two things often go together—contentiousness and chastisement—for the fool’s very contentiousness is deserving of punishment since it serves no good purpose but is only done in an attempt to exalt his ego. There is much difference in contending for truth, which involves standing firm in it when others would compromise or contradict it, and merely being contentious, which involves an attempt to establish one’s own position regardless of the truth.

We attempt to stand firm and while that is not easy I believe we can tell stories that demonstrate the necessity of doing so.

Posted in Collectivist Narrative, Media Bias, Social Media, Stories, World View | Tagged , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Don’t Just Stand There, Feed My Sheep

I had one of the teens in our youth church group ask me once, “We are told to listen for God’s voice, but I want to know if it means we will actually hear a ‘voice’ speak to us.”  The teen was the child of our Pastor and I was sorely tempted to say, “Ask your Dad” but, alas he had joined the group to observe and did not seem inclined to answer so I responded that I thought God sent people and information our way so as to show us the way.

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Copyright © 2011 The Zondervan Corporation.

All we have to do is be open to hearing what He has to say.

Last night and this morning a couple of links were sent my way that seemed to come together into a message.  A message that is appropriate for this Easter season.

I ended yesterday’s post with:

John 15:13 (KJV)

13 Greater love hath no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends.

I know this refers to Christ’s sacrifice on the cross but I think that also means that we are expected to care about and for one another.

Today I read two articles that address many of the issues I spoke of yesterday.  The articles dealt with bystanders who witness the commission of crimes and yet do nothing.  They address the issues in very different ways but there is an underlying message I think we can take away from both.

The first article I read was posted by Chicks on the Right.  It discusses a video recently made by the Defense Department’s Defense of Equal Opportunity Management Institute, to provide training to people who might witness an assault or other crime taking place, on how they can intervene.

The video is about bystander intervention.  The premise is set using a horrendous crime in the 1980s that resulted in the murder of a woman.  Dozens of people had “witnessed” all or part of the crime, yet failed to intervene.  The video goes on to outline a nine-step plan to “teach” us how to intervene.

The problem with setting the stage with a violent sex crime and then addressing intervention into harassment in the workplace makes absolutely no sense, however, I believe the entire video is a demonstration of just how differently the two world views operating in our world today see reality.

The COTR address the video with a bit of humor and sarcasm by pointing out just how ridiculous it is to use the nine point intervention plan when responding to a violent crime in progress.  The satiric video included in this post also does a good job of pointing out how absurd it would be.

I think the video and its nine points fails to recognize a couple of important points.  First, there is evil in this world and there always will be.  It does not matter how “nice” we are or how we structure society.  Evil will always exist.  Second, we have, as I said in yesterday’s post, outsourced the things Christ encouraged us to do.  Therefore, we tend to think “someone else” will take care of this.  That someone else sometimes never shows up…..or shows up too late.

The second article, Steubenville and Our Society of Bystanders probably caught my attention because of the word bystanders.  It is an excellent article that discusses the horrific crime committed by two boys in Ohio.  I watched the news coverage of their sentencing and remember thinking, “how many other people watched this happen, and assisted with spreading the filth on social media?”  How many?  How could they?  WHY did they?

Again, I believe these are the unintended consequences of a Progressive world view that holds that there is no transcendent source of Truth; no unchanging moral compass.  The Progressive wants everyone to feel good and be free to do what is “right for them.”  They believe that if the intelligent elite structures society in just the right way that “Men will stop raping because they are asked to stop.” You, therefore do NOT need a gun to defend yourself. They believe if we are nice enough to other countries who hate us and apologize for past mistakes Global Peace will be ushered in.

They BELIEVE that.

The article about the two Steubenville football players who mercilessly raped a teenage girl, then spread pictures and videos of themselves throughout social media states:

We are increasingly becoming a society of bystanders—making media of human suffering, filling our hands with cameras, phones and typepads so that we have no free hand to lend to those who need it most.

Our inclination to stand by and do nothing in the face of human injustice is a a beastly epidemic, fed by the ease of unfiltered social media use and the artificial distance created between digital “reality” and moral repercussions. So we report and even consume news of women being raped, children being bullied, nations being oppressed, standing by, out of the way, and doing nothing to stop such incidences from happening again.

As this indicates, we need to not only intervene instead of standing by when something is wrong in our personal sphere, but also in a broader context.  As Lt. Gen. (Ret.) Jerry Boykin says in the video below: “stop using Biblical prophecy as a reason for not doing anything. This, of course, refers to the broader context and it is something I’ve discussed in previous posts.

It is difficult sometimes to know what it is that God would have us do.  What makes it more complicated and confusing is the Social Justice movement that has invaded our churches…but that is another subject for another time….
Which brings me to one of my favorite SkitGuys videos.

“Feed my sheep,” Jesus says to Peter.  In following this command, we therefore spread the Word of God and become Christ’s hands and feet in a suffering, fallen world.

It also means we do not stand by and watch evil triumph.  Peter finally understood and did what Christ asked him to do.

Let us go forth and do likewise.

Posted in Freedom of Religion, Gun control, Social Justice, Social Media, World View | Tagged , , , , , | Leave a comment