published Wednesday, November 28th, 2012

'Don't put politics above Christ' and more Letters to the Editors

Don't put politics above Christ

Compare David Brooks' "Lincoln" (Times, Nov. 24) with the President of presidents, Jesus Christ.

Brooks: "You can do more good in politics than in any other sphere."

Jesus: "The Son of man came not to be served but to serve, and to give His life a ransom for many." "Christ died for our sins" shows love; resurrection, power. Putting politics above what Jesus did shows foolish pride.

Brooks: "You can achieve these things only if you ... stain your character ... bamboozle, trim, compromise and be slippery and hypocritical ... get the true believers ... to say things they don't believe."

Compromise, but ... Jesus: "Get behind me, Satan ... [Satan] is a liar, and the father of [lies]."

Brooks: "He had to scuttle a peace process that would've saved thousands of lives ... to achieve a larger objective."

Maybe, but devout Wilberforce abolished British slavery without killing a million people.

ANDREW LOHR


Cartoon petty, mean-spirited

Clay Bennett's cartoon on Thanksgiving Day depicting Romney and wife serving "crow" was uncalled for and mean-spirited. It was petty and unnecessary -- particularly on a day where we all give thanks for our blessings. Clay Bennett, you should be ashamed.

TERRY KEISTER

Harrison


Krugman keeps his partisan ways

Does the Times run Paul Krugman's columns just to make local conservatives crazy? Or am I crazy to read them?

In "Grand old planet," Krugman continues his partisan-baiting ways by making an ideological mountain out of a molehill of a comment by Sen. Rubio of Florida. Beginning with Rubio's evasive response to a question about the age of the earth (do liberals ever get such questions -- and why do conservatives give such questioners the time of day?), Krugman builds a case that Rubio is typical of Republicans who blithely refuse to take global warming seriously, or even more egregiously, who refuse to be persuaded by evidence "not just toward biology, but toward everything." Wow, this guy is smarter than anyone knew.

Putting aside the partisan overkill, let the record show that most of the notable scientists of the early modern period were unabashed creationists who believed in a young earth. The discoveries of Galileo, Newton, Pascal and numerous others were not hindered by their faith presuppositions; the same is true of contemporary Bible-believing scientists, some of whom hold to old earth views and others to the traditional young earth view, but all of whom acknowledge that there are mysteries which God alone knows.

GARY LINDLEY

Lookout Mountain, Ga.

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ANDREW LOHR, whereas other devout Christians just a century before in Britain did what now? Something called the English Civil War?

Besides Wilberforce accomplished little and less. Emancipation didn't happen under him, British Imperialism continued for more than a century, and he even opposed general suffrage.

Do keep up your context-snipping ways though, it's so appropriate.

TERRY KEISTER, Ah yes, apparently we should set aside a day or two where we hide what we feel under a false smile. No thanks. Pass.

GARY LINDLEY, conservatives get such questions because they are pandering to such notions. Is it truly wrong to call out a fool for what he professes to believe?

Galileo, Newton, Pascal, do not live in modern eras where actual science is able to refute such beliefs, and holding onto them requires the deliberate dismissal of physical evidence.

Might as well believe in a flat-earth.

November 28, 2012 at 7:50 a.m.
Rickaroo said...

Good ol' Andrew Lohr. What would we do without his Bible quotes and admonitions to repent and turn to Jesus? We would all do quite nicely, actually.

You know, Mr. Lohr, I used to be a Christian. But then I decided to follow the truth wherever it leads me. You can't do that as long as you hold on to the fantastical, far-out, nonsensical writings of a book that was never really intended to be taken literally. As annoying and arrogant as your calls for sinners to repent can be I honestly feel sorry for you sometimes. To cling to some silly notion of one man being the only way to "salvation" is so limiting and destructive. Especially when that man is dead, buried in the past of long, long ago. And more than that, he never existed in the first place. He's not coming back, Mr. Lohr. It's pretty hard to come back when you never really existed.

There is plenty of well researched literature indicating that Jesus Christ is/was a purely mythical character, an amalgam of many other men/gods who preceded him in the lore of pagan sun-worshiping religions - men/gods who lived out their lives in much the same way that Christ supposedly did, being born of a virgin, having 12 apostles, performing the very same sort of miracles, being crucified and then rising from the dead 3 days later. The myth of Jesus Christ was not unique. He was just one of many myths that should have remained a myth. If there is any "resurrection" that ever occurred, it is that of a certain sect of believers calling themselves Christians who resurrected a myth from the ashes and breathed life into it and started worshiping it as the real deal.

Life is so much more than Jesus or a Bible or a belief. When you view life through that Christian lens, you limit the possibilities, the countless miracles of life itself. And when you look at people as being "saved" or "unsaved," you are unable to see individuals as the complete persons they are in their own right. You divide and you categorize and that in itself is destructive and judgmental.

I'm sure you feel a certain contentment in how you believe but it is not true contentment. It is the contentment of willful ignorance. And contrary to how the saying goes, ignorance is not bliss.

November 28, 2012 at 2:59 p.m.
daytonsdarwin said...

Interesting read on the so-called Ethics of Jesus

http://atheism.about.com/library/FAQs/christian/blfaq_jesus_ethics.htm?nl=1

Let the lightning bolts, frogs, boils, grasshoppers, rivers of blood, and other pestilence fly! Praise that lovin' Gawd!

November 28, 2012 at 4:11 p.m.
Rickaroo said...

Interesting article, dd. Most Christians seem to think that Christ was revolutionary in his calls for brotherly love and compassion, but there was actually not one utterance that flowed from his mouth that hadn't already been spoken or written before in the pagan religions that preceded him, or that preceded the time he supposedly lived. And even the more liberal of Christians like to think of Christ, if not as a divine messiah, at least as some sort of all-wise philosopher or teacher/preacher who stirred up the masses with his "radical" teachings. It is well known that prophets and preachers were a dime a dozen in those days a couple of millenia ago and that Jesus was a very common name. So there might well have been one or more preachers of renown named Jesus but not so great that anyone living today should consider him the cornerstone of a major religion.

The article does a good job of demonstrating how the JC in the Bible is such a hypocrite in following his own teachings. His words and his actions are almost always at odds with each other. As for what constitutes morality or ethics, I personally think that blind faith itself is immoral. I find it odd that blind-faith Christians see the usefulness and the necessity of making all major decsisions in their lives based on reason and common sense, but when it comes to their religion, it's okay, and even expected of them, to throw their reason out the window...and just believe. That to me is unconscionable.

November 28, 2012 at 5:06 p.m.
Rickaroo said...

GARY LINDLEY, if we libs can put up with the likes of Thomas Sowell, Walter Williams, Cal Thomas, and Dick Morris you ought to be able to tolerate Paul Krugman's once or twice a week writings. Anyway, if he drives you as crazy as you say, for Pete’s sake, just stop reading him! Here's a clue to keep you from accidentally coming across his liberal views: he's always on the left side of the Perspective section of the paper. It's pretty clever how it's set up that way: the right wingers always appear on the right side and the left wingers always appear on the left side. If you don't want to have your day upset by being exposed to the liberal mindset, just ignore the entire left side of the opinion pages. It's that simple.

As for your comment that "most of the notable scientists of the early modern period were unabashed creationists who believed in a young earth," I'm not sure what "notable scientists" you are talking about or what time period you are referring to when you say "early modern period," but ever since the discovery of radioactivity and then radiometric dating (perfected to such an extent today that the margin of error is a mere one percent) there are very few scientists who doubt that the world is less than 4.5 million years old. Any scientist today who holds to a "traditional young earth view" would be tantamount to a doctor believing that leeches can cure cancer.

November 28, 2012 at 10 p.m.
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