Saturday, February 05, 2005

What I Believe and Why I Believe It

This posts title is going to serve a very specific purpose which I shall get to later in the post. First, though, I have a few housekeeping items to take care of.

First and foremost, I want to thank people for commenting about THIS blog, over on the Xanga site. I'm glad to see that people are reading and whether you are a close personal friend, somebody I don't know or somebody I've known, but perhaps not befriended, I'm glad you stop by. Regardless of whether or not you (the reader) agrees with me, I am thankful that you stop by. Hopefully if you don't agree with me, I can, in some way shape or form, make you THINK, at least, about some issue or topic in a way that you have never thought before. That is why I keep this blog up and running.

Secondly, sticking to the topic of commenting, I have reopened the comment section of this blog. However, make no mistake, I have absolutely no problem with closing it again if it is abused. Commenting on one's blog is a privilege. Though I know that sounds like I think very highly of myself (actually, I do think I'm a pretty cool guy), my reasoning is quite simple: if you have something to say, you ought to have the courage to claim it. I do not like 'unsigned' comments. If you want to say something, say it--then provide a link back to your blog or to your email address or something so that I can have a dialogue with you. That's what this whole thing is about, isn't it? Communication and expression of ideas. I encourage you to comment, but like I said, please have the courage and the courtesy to claim your ideas.

On a final housekeeping note, for anybody keeping up with the Ross Feud, now may be a good time to stop. Ross may continue writing and responding, but I'm just not sure that I will. There is a reason for this--what I believe and why I believe it is based very much on the Bible and the teaching of the Bible. Now, while I am NOT saying that Ross is a nonbeliever, he has told me before that any (and I do mean any) response that I justify by quoting or citing the Bible will immediately be deleted (if I make the comment on his blog) or discredited if it is made here. So, since the Bible offers as my reason for much if not all of what I believe, especially on the topic of abortion and homosexuality, I cannot defend myself in the eyes of Ross and his cronies if I am to be discredited any time I sort the source of my belief structure.

Now onto the relevance of my title:

On particular comment that I received recently (this morning actually) was particularly troubling. A girl whom I do not know and will not address by name left a pretty rough comment about the evils of the Vent Pipe. She's from Cumberland, MD I think, but I really have no clue who she is. Anyway, here is a rough summary of what she had to say:

All religions have faults; Jesus hates George W. Bush; there are more Muslims than Christians; a developing child (as in inside the whom) is not a child it is a FETUS; abortions are expensive therefore they aren't abused; abortion can be, but isn't always, a terrible thing; Christianity is evil; Muslims and Christians believe the same except for the 'whole Jesus thing;' we can never teach bad people to stop doing bad things; 9/11 was awful but afterwards we should have said, 'Gosh that was rough. Oh well, they made a mistake, we'll just let it go and forget that there are still lots of crazies out there who want to crash a few more planes into buildings;' Bush's name 'won't be lost in history;' don't pray in school and people like her won't 'think in my church;' and I (jeff) shouldn't be angry that a once viable and noble organization (NOW and the Feminist Movement) has perverted itself to stand ONLY for liberal values which harm the family and women themselves; and that's all she has "for now." I suppose that is setting me up for another round of carpet bombing.

Before my response I just want to let it be known that, although I don't agree with much of that, I admire this young lady for posting and for sharing her thoughts. I also appreciate her recognition of my right to be open about my opinions. I thank her for posting and hope she returns to comment again.

Now, the response:

First of all, Jesus does not hate Bush. For anybody who follows the Hampshire Review (that would by my homies from Romney etc.), you know that I was told that Jesus hates me. Listen here, folks, Jesus hates nobody. That is what makes Him perfect and the rest of us slime. We are unworthy even to speak His name because He loves us even as we spit in His face everyday. I know that I don't lead a perfect life, and still He loves me--and that is why I, and Bush, love Him. He and he alone is perfect enough to love us even in our mistreating Him.

Secondly, I don't know where this idea that there are 'more Muslims than Christians' originated but it simply isn't true. As shown in the chart found here, Christians out number Muslims by almost double. There are, after all, almost 1 billion Catholics alone worshiping the Lord Jesus Christ.

Sticking to the topic of religion, I just absolutely love that statement that "Muslims are Christians except for the whole Jesus thing." Now, miss, I don’t' know if you are a Christian. If you are, then you should know how bad that statement is. If you aren't, then let me show you the error you have made. Jesus is Christianity and Christianity is Jesus. Without Jesus, there is not Christianity. Christianity is a belief that Jesus Christ is the Son of God who died for our souls. He was the only perfect human being to ever live. He was the perfect sacrifice who died so that 'we may not die, but have ever lasting life.' So, without that 'whole Jesus things' we wouldn't be Muslims, we'd be non-existent. This is just the most awful, annoying thing I've ever heard. You can have Christianity without the 'whole Jesus thing.' Let me say it again: YOU CAN'T HAVE CHRISTIANITY WITHOUT THE 'WHOLE JESUS THING.' Is that sinking in?

Continuing on Christianity--the belief that "you shouldn't pray in my school and I won't think in your church" is fundamentally wrong for two reasons, and wrong on an abstract level in numerous other ways. First of all, it's not "your school" ok? It's my school. And your school. And my brothers' school. And Joes Smoe's school. A publicly funded school is owned and operated by the public. Therefore, I have just as much right to carry my beliefs and openly display them in that school as you do to carry your lack of (if that is the case) beliefs and openly display them. Secondly, 'pray' and 'think' are not antonyms and shouldn't be treated as such. I think when I pray and, often I pray when I think. For Christians, Jews, Muslims etc. 'pray' and 'think' go together hand in hand. We need to pray in order to think. That's just how it works. If you don't understand that, I'm sorry for you. And finally, to close the subject, prayer in school is the least of all that we should be worried about in America. Murder, poverty, abortion, National Security, National Defense, border patrol, Social Security--all of these things trump 'prayer in school.' I think that this is the least of our worries. Who am I hurting by saying, "God, thank you for what you have given me and for who you have made me. Thank you for the sacrifice of your Son. Please guide me and keep me safe. Amen." Nobody. Who are you (not you specifically) hurting by saying, "Shut the hell up. Thanking a higher power is evil and bad and blah blah." Approximately 2 million people worldwide. Just get over it and stop being petty.

Moving on: Abortion is not a sticky subject folks. I don't know where people get that it's ok to kill human beings just because they're not fully developed. After all, Ted Kennedy hasn't been fully developed in a mental capacity, but it isn't ok for me to kill him. I suppose this goes to the idea of what I believe and why I believe it: The Bible clearly states that "before we were formed, He knew us." While a few cells may not be able to live outside the womb, those cells are living, growing cells. New studies are showing that the child, even in its simplest form, feels the pain of the abortion. Aside from that, other studies are making correlations between abortion and cancer. If it's not the unborn child you care about, you should at least care about yourself not to have an abortion for the chance that you could develop cancer. Abortion isn’t' bad sometimes, it's always bad.

On 9/11: The wars (Afghanistan and Iraq) that followed 9/11 were not revenge; they were (are) prevention. It was not a matter of, "Dammit, you killed thousands of us now we're going to kill thousands of you!" It was "This is just awful--how to we prevent this from ever happening again." You may not like it, but these wars are for you. And me. And your family. And mine. Etc. Etc. These wars are to help prevent another 9/11.

Finally you show your disapproval of my belief that the Feminist movement has been led off the good path by NOW. Well, get over it. I think that there are more pressing issues in the world than whether or not abortion should be cheap and available on demand. Women should be ashamed to be associated with such a group--and most women are. Few women even feel like NOW speaks for them and their beliefs. That's just the facts, folks.

You, person who left these comments, said that was all for now. Let me extend an invitation for you to come back. I doubt that I will ever address your comments again in such detail--but please, come back to visit! I am glad to keep you thinking.


At 2:26 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I think that your entire response was great and got right to the point of things.

I agree with all of your opinions about Christianity, abortion, public schools and the rest. You get my "pat on the back" and I agree; you are a pretty cool guy.

(you know how to contact me)

At 7:24 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Jeff: it should be noted that I primarily didn't want large ammounts of religious text (or other things that are already in print and quite accessible) to be posted or regurgitated. I don't plan to delete "any" response involving religious texts at this point; I'd have to delete all of yours thus far, which i haven't done. I can't really argue with anything you justify by reference of the Bible; as i've stated, i find it all (religious texts in general) to be open to interpretation. In terms of politics, i beleive very strongly in separation of church and state. At any rate, I didn't want to be the cause of the stifling of someone's voice.


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