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Member since: Mon Jan 26, 2015, 06:15 PM
Number of posts: 35,129

About Me

bilingual, bipedal homo sapien

Journal Archives

Support For Trump Impeachment Rises 5% In Less Than A Month

From the article:

The number of Americans who said President Donald Trump should be impeached rose 5 percentage points to 45 percent since mid-April, while more than half said multiple congressional probes of Trump interfered with important government business, according to a Reuters/Ipsos poll released on Thursday.

To read more:


Only 45%

Vatican law: Priests, nuns must report sex abuse, cover-up

From the article:

Pope Francis issued a groundbreaking law Thursday (May 9) requiring all Catholic priests and nuns around the world to report clergy sexual abuse and cover-up by their superiors to church authorities, in a new effort to hold the Catholic hierarchy accountable for failing to protect their flocks.
The new church law provides whistleblower protections for anyone making a report and requires all dioceses around the world to have a system in place to receive the claims confidentially. And it outlines procedures for conducting preliminary investigations when the accused is a bishop, cardinal or religious superior.

To read more:


Oppression, and what it says about humanity.

I recently wrote a post, one of a series, dealing with the well know oppression that the Chinese Government is directing at the Uighur Muslim minority in eastern China.
One of the responses was as follows:

Wed May 8, 2019, 05:31 AM
Bretton Garcia (816 posts)
75. American law restricts some religions implicitly though

If your religion requires unwilling human sacrifice for instance.

So not ALL religious practices are completely honored. Not if they break the law, and hurt other people.

So when the US and China confront religious, Muslim terrorism? We might honor much of Islam; but not if or where it links to what we consider murder.

Since the Chinese live in very close. even overlapping proximity to terrorist Islamic factions, they have chosen to "re-educate" some Chinese Muslims. Emphasizing one hopes the peaceful side of Islam.

In any case, that is what some have recently done in the West. Though not by camps. But in the media, stressing the peaceful side of all religions.


Let us deconstruct this reply, starting here:

So, when the US and China confront religious, Muslim terrorism? We might honor much of Islam; but not if or where it links to what we consider murder.

The poster has apparently decided to classify all of these victims of persecution as terrorists. Thus, providing no actual proof of the truth of his assertion, he can ignore what is being done by the Chinese Government.

Second, we have this bit of creative framing:

Since the Chinese live in very close. even overlapping proximity to terrorist Islamic factions, they have chosen to "re-educate" some Chinese Muslims. Emphasizing one hopes the peaceful side of Islam.

So, having framed all of the Uighur Muslims as members of “terrorist Islamic factions”, we can again ignore the reality of what is happening in China.

And the acceptance of the Chinese Government line that these are “re-education camps” allows the poster to blame the victims for their own persecution.

I have posted numerous articles detailing what is being done to the Uighur Muslims by the Chinese Government. The poster has provided zero evidence to rebut what numerous sources have detailed. The poster has chosen instead to accept the Chinese Government line at face value.

The point of my articles about the brutal oppression of the Uighur Muslims in China is to show how autocrats oppress people. And how autocrats divide people, and demonize factions as a way of facilitating the oppression.

In this case, the autocrats in question are atheists, and the victims are theists.

And that fact, in my view, is why these posts provoke such a strong reaction.

Rachel Held Evans, Christian writer of honesty and humor, dies at age 37

From the article:

Evans is best known for her popular blog and best-selling books, including New York Times best-seller “A Year of Biblical Womanhood,” ”Searching for Sunday” and, most recently, “Inspired.” She also served on President Obama’s Advisory Council on Faith-based and Neighborhood Partnerships.

Rachel Held Evans made homemade matzoh toffee for Passover during her year of living biblically. Courtesy photo
In her books and blog posts, she wrote openly about her faith journey, which led her from Bryan College — a conservative evangelical school known for promoting belief in a literal, six-day creation — to the mainline Episcopal Church. Along the way, she chronicled her faith, doubt, honest questions and evolving beliefs with a sense of humor.

To read more:


Hate is losing in the US.

Remember that.

Yes, the news is filled with stories of racists openly promoting their brand.

And yes, Trump dominates the media with his open hatred and vicious attacks on anyone who does not share his hate.

And yes, the clash between the House and Trump is like a slow motion train wreck.

But remember, and repeat to yourself, that Trump lost by over 3 million votes. In spite of all the GOP cheating, in spite of the suppression, in spite of Comey's lying right before the election, in spite of the corporate media creating and normalizing Trump, HRC beat Trump by over 3 million votes.

The haters are losing.

The racists are losing.

This country is changing and the white racists do not like the changes, but they cannot stop them. No walls can stop the demographic changes.

2018 showed what an energized electorate can accomplish.

2020 is the next step.

Keep hope, and be energized for the election.


Reliving My Mother's Nightmare as a Holocaust Survivor in Trump's America

From the article:

As a part of Holocaust Remembrance Day, on which we remember the systematic extermination of six million Jews and millions more who were killed because of who they were, PoliticusUSA’s Adalia Woodbury talks about living in Trump’s America as the direct descendant of a Holocaust survivor....

A while ago, I was advised to put more of myself into my writing. It went against my training, but the biggest reason is because it hurts too much.
For the past 3 years I’ve felt as if I’m relieving my mother’s nightmare – but at a different stage in life and in a different part of the world. This was supposed to be part of the world that valued and accepted everyone; that recognized knowledge as a virtue....

The worst thing is that Trump made all of us the walking wounded for the rest of our lives. Sure, there are some freaks of nature out there salivating as Trump calls human beings scum, dogs, animals, and other equally dehumanizing labels. But we’re all walking wounded. Some of us just don’t know it. Others know it too well.
I know about the walking wounded, because that was my mother. She was a brilliant scientist who was nominated for the Nobel Prize. It was one of those times when yeah, it’s a big deal just to be nominated. That’s because my mother was an immigrant, a Holocaust survivor and a woman. In those days, on this side of the Atlantic – who you were still determined what you could accomplish in life. Unless you were born here, were white and Christian, you had to be truly extraordinary to be considered adequate.

To read more:


We all know that the number of hate crimes has risen dramatically under Trump's misrule. We can see that haters from every group feel emboldened to openly hate.

In my area, the Illinois 3rd Congressional District, a District which encompasses part of Chicago and neighboring suburbs,
an open and admitted Nazi received over 56,000 votes in the 2018 Congressional race.

Think about that. An open Nazi received over 56,000 votes from GOP voters.

Trump's defense of Charlottesville comments emboldens white nationalists

From the article:

Monuments dedicated to Confederate leaders Robert E. Lee, Jefferson Davis and Thomas ‘Stonewall’ Jackson do not belong in public spaces such as government land, schools and parks. The SPLC catalogued more than 1,700 Confederate symbols located across the U.S. Since the Charleston massacre, 115 have been removed from public spaces and 15 in Virginia alone.

Not only are we reminded of the mythological Lost Cause through these Confederate symbols of our past that litter the American landscape, but we’ve seen a surge in white nationalist hate groups operating in the United States, which increased nearly 50 percent between 2017 and 2018. It is clear that this is not just an issue at home, but is now a global issue. The threat from white nationalists needs to be taken seriously.

To read more:


We all know that, for the current version of the GOP, racism and white nationalism in every toxic form cnstitute the cement that holds the Party together. And to appease the monied interests that own the Party, constant tax cuts keep the money flowing.

China is punishing Muslims for fasting. So US Muslims are fasting from China.

From the article:

This Ramadan, human rights groups and Muslim organizations are urging U.S. Muslims to boycott products made in China, where authorities have for years cracked down on Muslims fasting.
“People say, ‘Oh, I can’t boycott China, everything is made in China,’” said Hena Zuberi, director of outreach for the nonprofit Justice for All, who helped found the Fast From China campaign this month. “Well, we have the spiritual wherewithal to refrain from eating and drinking during the day in Ramadan. This is a time to control your nafs (self).”
Launched April 19 by the Sound Vision Foundation’s Save Uighur project, the Fast From China initiative aims to get Muslims to rethink their everyday purchasing decisions and replace items bearing a “Made in China” label with products made in other countries.

To read more:


If there is enough public pressure on US businesses, perhaps US and world consumers can influence the Chinese Government to cease their persecution of theists.

Can you take the name of a band, and change 1 letter to make a new name?

My offering:

The Graceful Dead.

My wife's suggestion:

The Rolling Scones.

One more:

Crosby, Stills, Hash and Young.

James Comey Explains How Trump Has Eaten The Soul Of The Republican Party

From the article:

It starts with your sitting silent while he lies, both in public and private, making you complicit by your silence. In meetings with him, his assertions about what “everyone thinks” and what is “obviously true” wash over you, unchallenged, as they did at our private dinner on Jan. 27, 2017, because he’s the president and he rarely stops talking. As a result, Mr. Trump pulls all of those present into a silent circle of assent.
Speaking rapid-fire with no spot for others to jump into the conversation, Mr. Trump makes everyone a co-conspirator to his preferred set of facts, or delusions. I have felt it — this president building with his words a web of alternative reality and busily wrapping it around all of us in the room.
I must have agreed that he had the largest inauguration crowd in history because I didn’t challenge that. Everyone must agree that he has been treated very unfairly. The web building never stops.

To read more:


It is nice of Comey to state the obvious, but Comey's own key role in attacking HRC immediately prior to election day cannot be forgotten.
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