Tag Archives: political correctness

The Confederacy vs. the PC Confederacy of Dunces

(Note:  This rant was originally going to be published earlier, but got sidetracked with the whole “gay marriage” thing.)

Since that sick, cowardly, vile, racist little piece of excrement shot up an historic black church in Charleston over a week ago, controversy (and not a little bit of hysteria) rages on concerning the Confederate battle flag, which he had posed with in some pictures posted online.

As is usual with high-profile vile murders these days, before the bodies were even cold, the left began politicizing it, including Dear Leader, who predictably used it to pitch government “gun control,” blamed the “dark part of our history,” making the absurd and patently false claim that such violence “does not happen in other advanced countries.”

As usual, blame everyone and everything but the murderer himself.

But the real drama centered around the Confederate battle flag, and the Racist South in general, which somehow became seen by the left, and even by some so-called “conservatives” as the real  villain behind the murders.

When the Republican South Carolina governor Nikki Haley called for the battle flag to be removed from the state courthouse, she was widely applauded, as if she had made some kind of heroic decision.

But that action was hardly enough in the eyes the politically correct mob.  People began screaming for the flag to be removed from private property that was visible to the public.  Walmart and Amazon (the latter company not known to avoid selling “offensive” items) began removing all merchandise bearing the flag from their inventory.  No more Dukes of Hazzard!

In the debate over the flag, I saw and heard a lot of ignorant ranting, from both liberals, and some “conservatives” comparing the Confederacy to the Nazis, and the flag to the Nazi swastika.

The old Yankee charge was also brought up quite a bit that the Confederates were all vile traitors to their country, and thus deserving of no memory but contempt and shame.

But back then, people in the States, at least in the Southern States, sincerely saw their “country” as being their home state, rather than the federal Union, and it was to their state that they owed their patriotic loyalty, which they saw as a sacred thing.  Most Southerners regarded fighting against their home state as traitorous and dishonorable.  The Union was a creation of the various States, rather than the other way around, and Southerners (as well as many Yankees) believed states should be free to secede if they wished.

Both Robert E. Lee and Thomas J. “Stonewall”  Jackson (to use the examples of the two most famous and celebrated Confederate generals) fought for the Confederacy out of profound loyalty to their home state, rather than to perpetuate slavery, and both tended to side with the Union, until federal troops were sent in to invade South Carolina.  This tipped Virginia and other “border states” into joining the Confederacy, against what was seen as unjust federal aggression.

The war was also not primarily about slavery, but over the issue of whether states had the right to secede from the Unions.  Freeing of the slaves was originally not even a Union objective.  The Emancipation Proclamation occurred late in the war (and only applied to slaves in Confederate states.)

The Southern states did not seek to overthrow the federal government, but to secede and be independent from Washington and the federal government (just as the American colonies sought independence from the British Crown, rather than to overthrow the king in England).

Jackson prayed fervently with others for war to be avoided, and before the war, Lee said if he could, he would personally buy the freedom of every slave if it could prevent war.

Lee and Jackson would have both been appalled at the abuse of the flag in the Charleston murders.

The history of the war and the Confederacy is complex and nuanced, rather than the simplistic cartoon version of history preached by the politically correct.  For many Southerners, the flag is a symbol of honor and Southern pride, rather than racism or slavery.  Officially banning the flag as a symbol of racial hatred is actually a victory for the hateful crazies to allow them to define the flag’s meaning.

The hysterical politically correct frenzy to remove all traces of the battle flag, and other signs of the heritage of the old South, of course, does absolutely nothing to stop or prevent racism or hateful acts of violence.  It’s not as if that loser would not have committed those murders had only the flag not been flying at the courthouse.

And forcibly removing anything that people claim offends them raises a troubling precedent.

I’d personally be curious to know how many liberals screaming for the Confederate flag to be banned from public also oppose legislation that would protect the American flag from burning or other desecration.

The Confederate flag offends some people, so it needs to be removed from public view, but pee on a crucifix, and it’s “art” and “free speech” that must be funded with public tax dollars.

America may be weaker than ever before in modern history, our real liberties decreasing, while we borrow and spend at a frantic pace, laying a massive, unpayable debt on our young and future generations.  But, hell, the gays can “marry,” and we’ve gotten rid of the Confederate flag, so everything’s swell!

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Jihad Comes to Texas

Last week, Islamic Jihad came to the Lone Star state (sort of) when two would-be Jihadists armed with AK-47s, pistols, and over 100 rounds of ammo attacked the Curtis Culwell Center in Garland, TX, which was hosting a “Draw the Prophet” art exhibit organized by Pamela Geller’s American Freedom Defense Initiative.  (The center was the site of January’s “Stand with the Prophet” event which I had mentioned in my previous rant “Standing Against the Prophet.”)   Unfortunately for the “Prophet” and his “religion of peace,” the attempted at Jihad came to a quick end when the gunmen were shot dead by a hero cop with a Glock pisto.  Despite the two Jihadist wannabes being the only fatalities, the Islamic State (which claimed credit for the attack) bizarrely declared it a “victory for Islam.”  (Guess those guys still got their 72 virgins, so score one for them.)

Members of the Left (once known for being an advocate of absolute free speech, especially when the speech offends religious sensibilities) were for the most part either silent, or placed all the blame on Geller and her group for indulging in “hate speech” and needlessly provoking Muslims.   Some even claimed that the exhibit as “hate speech” (aka speech leftists don’t like) was not in fact protected by the first amendment.

That’s quite a different tune than that sung by the left concerning speech or artistic expression offensive to Christians.  In such cases, it is not “hate speech,” but free speech that must be allowed, and even tax-subsidized.  Remember the controversy over Andres Serrano’s “Piss Christ” back in the late ‘80s?  Any opposition to funding that little piece of artsy blasphemy with tax dollars was strongly decried by liberals as un-American censorship, and a sure path to fascism.   Would many liberals be so adamant about supportive of publicly funding a “Piss Mohammed”?

Why the double standard?  Well, of course, there’s the obvious (though un-pc) difference that pissing off (figuratively or literally) Muslims involves a real risk of getting gunned down or blown up, while pissing off Christians does not.  It might at most result in an upset letter to the editor.  (All ridiculous pc claims that Islam is no more violent than Christianity to the contrary.)

Ironically, it’s typically expression offensive to Christians that liberals praise as “bold,” while insulting Islam is slammed as hateful bullying and bigotry.  But try to argue with a bleedin’ heart on this point, and they’ll typically start spouting incoherent babble about “Christian White Privilege” and such.

While this failed attempt at Jihad in Texas may not amount to much, the harsh reality is that in other parts of the world, followers of the “Religion of Peace” continue to murder, rape, and oppress Christians on a major scale.  Once upon a time, Popes called Christian men to crusade to defend innocent Christians against Muslim aggression.  Today, many Church leaders, like their secular liberal politician counterparts, are strangely quiet.  Apparently, more politically correct first world concerns, like “climate change” and finding ways to make “gays” feel more welcome in church, are more pressing priorities.

While some “liberals” may try to argue that Muslims and other “oppressed minorities” somehow have a right not to be publicly offended, the religious liberties of Christians as well as Muslims are falling under ever greater threat.  Legal experts say that if the Supreme Court declares “gay marriage” to be a “constitutional right,” as many say is inevitable (despite the fact that the Constitution says nothing about marriage whatever, and nowhere grants the federal government the power to define marriage), churches and religious institutions opposed to homosexual “marriage” may lose their tax exempt status, and face lawsuits.  Believe it or not, once upon a time, the job of the Supreme Court was actually interpret and uphold the Constitution, rather than dictate the demands of social liberalism to the masses.

And Democratic presidential Anointed One Hillary has stated that “religious beliefs” that oppose “reproductive rights,” including abortion, “must change.”

Of course, such measures will be supported and applauded by many bleeding heart “Catholics.”  Can’t let issues such as human life get in the way of “social justice,” aka leftist socialism.  God help us all.

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Murder, Mayhem, and Madness

You could practically see the gleeful salivating eager anticipation on the faces of liberals a week or so ago, when the news came out of the despicable and senseless murder of three young Muslim students in Chapel Hill, North Carolina.  A “hate crime”!  Against Muslims!  And just after Dear Leader had, no doubt prophetically, warned all us trigger-happy Christian types against the coming bloody “backlash” against Muslims, shaming us with tales of Christian violence from a thousand years ago at a prayer breakfast!  (I suppose bashing long-dead Christians is as close as a dedicated leftist gets to prayer.)

(Btw, regarding the prayer breakfast comments, I’d recommend learning from Dr. Thomas Madden,  who dispels many popular myths on these subjects.  Unlike Obama and various liberal pundits, Dr. Madden is an actual historian and expert on the topic.)

On a message board I was on, a bleeding heart breathlessly announced the news of the Chapel Hill murders, immediately followed by speculative babble about the likely root causes of this crime, namely “ Christian Privilege,” particularly White/Straight/Male/Christian Privilege.  Those damn Straight Christian White Guys again!  This was (quite predictably) followed bya pc diatribe about Christian intolerance against Muslims, gays, and anybody else who’s “different.”

Of course, most of the excitement died down quickly when it was revealed that the killer was in fact a self-described “anti-theist” atheist, as well as a political liberal who was a fan of lefty organizations such as the Southern Poverty Law Center, and various bleeding heart causes like “gay rights,” who committed the murders apparently out of rage over a parking incident.

Whatever his deep dark murky inner motivations for the murder were (and I don’t purport to know them), they clearly had nothing to do with Christianity.

(But he was, in fact, a White Guy.)

I mention that not to score cheap points against atheists and liberals.  Much as I disagree with atheism and the left, the truth is that most atheists and bleeding hearts don’t run around gunning innocent people down.  (They’re usually too busy whining on teh interwebz about “White Christian Privilege” and whatnot.)

But let’s face it, if the murderer had instead been shown to be a self-professed Christian, or been a political conservative (as they doubtlessly had hoped), the media would have a field day, and still be berating us conservative tea-bagging Christian types for the murderous hatred we had fostered, and how the blood was on all our hands.

For the past few decades, it seems the left has desperately attempted to politicize every senseless murder that makes news headlines, with conservatives always being somehow to blame.  (Could the killer be a Tea-Partier?!)  If nothing else, there’s always the predicable-as-clockwork cries of how the murder illustrates the dire need for more restriction of second amendment rights.

This is tied to the ongoing desperate attempt to paint conservative Christians as a hateful, violence-prone bunch (much like ISIS, only nastier).  Never mind the fact that extremely few murders or acts of terror are actually committed by committed Christians or conservatives.

Hating Islam can sometimes be acceptable in politically correct liberal circles, but only when this hatred is balanced by an equal hatred of Christianity (which, after all is the real enemy).   Like with the killer in Chapel Hill who hates all “theists,” Christian and Muslim alike.   Islamic terrorism is commonly used as a club to beat Christians with – “See what happens when people believe in a God?!”  Ironically, those same folks who insist on lumping all “theists” together become very perturbed when it’s pointed out that folks such as Stalin or Mao or that dude in Chapel Hill were in fact atheists.  (“But Real Atheists™ are peaceful!”)

Meanwhile, down here in Texas, the killer of  “American Sniper” Chris Kyle his friend Chad Littlefield was convicted of murder.  I’m glad and thankful that those true American heros received justice, and that the jury didn’t buy the defense’s ridiculous “insanity defense” bullcrap.  Getting yourself high as a kite before going to the gun range may make you an idiot, but it doesn’t make you innocent of murder.    (And I thought smoking weed, much like atheism, was supposed to bring peace’n’luv to the world and make it a better place for us all.  Oh well.)

But in the case of that creep in Chapel Hill, I just might buy the insanity defense.  Anyone that leftist has got to be completely nucking futs in my book.

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Standing Against the “Prophet”

Over a week ago (since I didn’t finish this rant in a timely fashion), I attended the local March for Life in Dallas (where the original case was heard that would lead up to the infamous Roe v. Wade Supreme Court decision.  Of course, the predictably spineless Republicans in Congress failed to push a bill banning late-term abortions (otherwise known as infanticide).

Later that same day in nearby Garland, another demonstration occurred, a “Stand with the Prophet” rally of Muslims, against the urgent threat of “Islamophobia” to America and the world.  (No, I didn’t make it to that one.)

Of course, the “Stand with the Prophet” march, and the counter-demonstration in favor of free speech, got all the media attention.  And for good reason, because irrational fear of Islam (much like that other great phobia of our times, that of the homo variety) is an issue of far greater importance and urgency than the murder of millions of babies.

After all, the rising bloody tide of violence and hate of Islamophobia (so the event’s organizers inform us) is indeed horrific, and a threat to us all.  I mean, just  look at the recent murder and mayhem caused by Islamophobes in France, and earlier in Australia.  Oh wait. . . .

You mean to tell me “Islamophobia” was not to blame, but rather the more fanatical practitioners of the “Religion of Peace”?  You hateful bigot!  Yes, just as they were responsible for the 9-11 attacks here in the U.S., countless other terrorist activity around the world, and the bloody savagery and aggression of ISIS.  Not to mention the large-scale slaughter, rape, and enslavement of Christians by Muslims in Africa.  (The media only pays attention when white people in affluent Western countries are victims.)

Atheists and other secularist types (as well as plenty of bleeding heart Christians) insist that such behavior is hardly unique to Islam, but happens just as often among members of all religions (especially Christianity), at least among conservative members who really seriously believe their own religion.  Which explains all the suicide bombings by Traditionalist Catholics, and deadly hostage situations perpetuated by Orthodox Jews.  Let’s not even get started on the global scourge of Amish violence.

The media just keeps quiet about these things because of its right-wing pro-Christian bias.

Suggest that Islam may in fact be responsible for a far greater share of the world’s violence, and you’re a racist bigot.  (I’ve heard leftist types actually argue that Islam is in fact a race.  Hey, they said it, not me.)

After the terrorist attacks in France, the world seems to at last be waking up to the reality of the ugly nature of Islamism, though it seems largely clueless as to how to deal with it.  (I’ll let others debate whether Dear Leader should have marched with other world dignitaries in France or not.  Yes, it was merely a probably ineffectual public gesture, and I’m sure he had important golfing to do.)

In any case, we’ve come a long way since the time of Obama’s first election, when the left assured us that Islamic terrorism was all Bush’s Fault, and would no doubt soon dissipate as our Dear Leader spread peace, luv, and hopeychange around the world.

Also, looking increasingly ridiculous are the various forms of unseemly “ecumenical” ass-kissing towards the so-called “religion of peace” which Catholics have engaged in since Vatican II.  This nonsense has led to all sorts of confusion among the faithful, some believing (wrongly) that the Church actually endorses the religion of Mohammed, and many Catholics ardently defending the false religion against any and all criticism, or babbling pious poppycock about Islam being “another path to Jesus.”  Of course, never mind the reality that Islam blatantly denies key Christian doctrines, including the divinity and crucifixion of Christ (according to Islam, Jesus was really a prophet who preached Islam, and prophets are invincible and cannot be put to death by their enemies), and was originally spread mainly by violent military conquest, much of the conquered lands being formerly Christian.  (Most of the Middle East and North Africa was Christian, and the Muslims did not convert the people in those places through peaceful dialogue.)

In fact, Islam has been the greatest external enemy of Christendom through the bulk of its history.  It deserves to be taken seriously, and ultimately, the only end to the Islamic threat will come through conversion to Christ.  This won’t be done, however, by singing Kumbya and pretending we really all believe the same thing, which will accomplish absolutely nothing.  Muslims know better than that, and the first step to any progress is to acknowledge the truth.

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The Duck Commander vs. Liberal “Tolerance”

As everyone knows by now, A&E banned Duck Dynasty patriarch and Duck Commander inventor Phil Robertson from filming for making some comments in a GQ interview that the network deemed too intolerant to be tolerated.  I’ll admit, I don’t watch the show (I watch hardly any TV), but from what I’ve heard, Duck Dynasty appears to be a decent and wholesome show which has made millions of fans “happy, happy, happy.”

The show’s wild popularity actually gave me a glimmer of hope for this country, especially as the Robertson clan seem to be a compendium of everything the forces of political correctness would have us despise and hate: white Southern rednecks, gun-owners and enthusiastic killers of innocent birds, successful businessmen in the “capitalist” system, and (worst of all!) devout born-again Christians.

Given that Mr. Robertson has made no secret of his Christian Faith, his beliefs regarding the immorality of homosexuality should hardly come as a shock.  What he stated was essentially the same as what the Church teaches on this matter:  that homosexual activity – along with other sins such as adultery and drunkenness – is sinful and wrong, citing Corinthians.  Yeah, he made an indelicate remark about vaginas being preferable to anuses, but since when were liberals prudes?

He didn’t say anything actually hateful, or make any call for violence, but said, “We never, ever judge someone on who’s going to heaven, hell. That’s the Almighty’s job. We just love ’em, give ’em the good news about Jesus — whether they’re homosexuals, drunks, terrorists. We let God sort ’em out later, you see what I’m saying?”

We never, ever judge someone on who’s going to heaven, hell. That’s the Almighty’s job. We just love ’em, give ’em the good news about Jesus — whether they’re homosexuals, drunks, terrorists. We let God sort ’em out later, you see what I’m saying?

Maybe not quite as elegantly worded as the Catechism of the Catholic Church, but still a sound summation of basic Christian moral theology – and no more hateful of homosexual persons than it is of folks with a fondness for the sauce.

As far as I’m aware, no drunks have yet expressed outrage over the Duck Commander’s shocking anti-drunkard bigotry.

The problem is, apparently for A&E, simply personally holding Christian moral beliefs found in the Bible is reason enough for punishment.  (The remarks in question were not even made on the show, or in connection with it.)

Of course, as a private company, A&E is free to decide who will and won’t be on its programs, and I’m sure Phil will probably be able to get along okay without A&E or Duck Dynasty.  (And if A&E wants to lose its main cash cow for the sake of political correctness,  surely someone else will be willing to buy – that is, if they’re not all complete slaves to pc idiocy.)

But the central issues here are much bigger than A&E and Duck Dynasty, and reflect a truly troubling trend in our country.  Our supposedly tolerant “liberal” society is becoming increasingly intolerant of any views contrary to its dominant ideology.  People have lost their jobs for blogging on their own time with the view that homosexuality is sinful.  A few months ago Fox Sports fired football analyst Craig James for opposing “gay marriage” (again, while off the job).

Progressives who preach ad nauseum about “tolerance” and “diversity” in fact support neither.

All opinions and beliefs are tolerated – so long as they agree with the cultural left ideology.  No dissent will be tolerated.

As usual, the left’s hypocrisy here is staggering.  I’d bet the bank that if, instead of being Christian, Mr. Robertson adhered to a more politically correct religion such as Islam, and had been fired for citing unpopular teachings from the Qur’an, the same bleeding hearts calling for his blood would instead be rushing to defend his civil liberties against the Islamophobic bigots.

When liberal celebs and media personalities make truly hateful remarks against Christians or conservatives, their jobs are never in danger, and it’s typically smiled on as edgy and cool, if not “daring.”  If Christians complain, they’re told to quit whining and grow a thicker skin.

Hell, even anti-gay slurs can be tolerated, so long as the person making them is sufficiently liberal (such as Alec Baldwin).

Sixty years later, liberals continue to remind us of the horrors of Hollywood blacklisting during the “Red scare” of the ‘50s.  But it’s all cool now that Christians rather than Commies are blacklisted.

Demanding, as many on the left now do, that opposing views be censored and suppressed (as one “liberal” commenter said, “bigoted religion has no place in modern America”) is in fact contrary to the most fundamental principles of a free and liberal (in the true sense of the word) society.

Sadly it appears that for the most part only conservatives and Christians who agree with Robertson’s comments are defending him against A&E.  I’ve seen almost no statements along the lines of “I’m a liberal and don’t like what Phil said, but A&E was wrong to punish him for his religious beliefs.”

Fortunately, the backlash against A&E appears strong and healthy (as was the backlash against the homo Chick-fil-A boycott), and hopefully will help draw attention to the issue of true freedom of practice of religion for all Americans.

Stand with Phil and boycott A&E!  (And don’t forget to keep eating mor chiken!)

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Youth Football and the Fall of America And Other Gridiron Musings

Seems nowadays you can’t even watch a damn football game without enduring insipid pc media indoctrination.  While watching my beloved yet ever-disappointing Washington Redskins suffer a drubbing at the hands of the Dallas Cowgirls, I was subjected to the even more pathetic spectacle of NBC’s Bob Costas’s half-time sermon against that most pressing evil of our time, the Skins’ name, and  how it urgently needs to be changed.

Costas acknowledged that the name of the Redskins team is not used with the intent to offend anybody, and the vast majority of persons do not take any offense at it, including the vast majority of American Indians/Native Americans/Turtle Islanders.

But even though the term Redskins isn’t offensive today, the sage professor Costas lectured, at some unspecified time in the distant murky past, it was deeply offensive and hurtful to Persons of Redness, and therefore must be banned and censored in our modern Sensitive, Enlightened times.

Except that in reality, there is no evidence that the word was historically regarded as offensive, being used by the natives themselves to distinguish them from the pale-faces.  The team was actually named to honor the original coach, the legendary William Dietz, of Sioux heritage.

Besides, there is the obvious fact that you don’t name a sports team after a group of people to insult or degrade them.  Teams are named after men admired for their courage, strength, toughness, etc.:  cowboys, Vikings, buccaneers, patriots . . .cheesepackers.   I’m not aware of any football teams called the Sissies, the Pansies, or the Retards (no offense, of course, to the pansies and the retards).

Sports teams were commonly named after Indians (or “Native Americans” if you prefer) because those men were in fact serious badasses, feared and respected for their courage and ferocity in battle.  This modern pc bs about Native Americans being a bunch of non-violent tree-hugging sensitive new-age sissies is just that, bullshit.  What’s even more sad is that apparently a small minority of American natives have become so brainwashed by lefty pc agitprop that they actually want to be known as a bunch of overly-sensitive  crybabies, rather than as the noble warriors of olden fame.

Hell, even today’s pc sissy-socialist Scandinavians don’t get their panties in a wad over their whole battle-axe swingin’ berserker Viking heritage.

I’m reminded of a visit a few years back with my wife to a Dallas historical museum in which the brave guarding the teepee subjected us to an extremely long-winded neo-Marxist eco-feminist lecture.  I began to wish the s.o.b. would be merciful, and just scalp us.  (Hey, I kid, I kid.  Y’all can put down those tomahawks.)

But, to get back on topic, the liberal powers-that-be are now demanding that over 80 years of proud tradition be ditched because a tiny minority of persons have now chosen to be offended by a certain team name.  Now, it seems, whenever some little special interest group declares themselves offended, everyone has to bend over backwards to sooth their precious little feelings.  Unless, of course, it is Catholics or Christians that are the offended party, in which case we’re simply told to quit whining and get over it.

Speaking of crybabies, I’ve actually heard leftists tell me with a straight face that pro sports are in fact “modern day slavery” in which black men are made to engage in brutal sport for white amusement.  Funny that these “slaves” are being paid multi-million dollar salaries.  And I’ve yet to hear of anyone being taken away in chains and forced  to play ball.  (And are white pro athletes also slaves, or only those of color?)  But, for the leftist, it seems absolutely everything is “slavery” or racism in need of government correction.  Interestingly, most of those bleedin’ hearts seem to be remarkably unconcerned about the very real slavery going on in parts of the world ruled by the Religion of Peace.

Turning from the NFL to the little leagues, the California youth football league has declared this season if any team beat another by more than 35 points, it would face a $200.00 fine, and the head coach would be suspended for a week.  Supposedly, this draconian policy was to teach “mercy” and “sportsmanship.”

Yeah, I know, it’s only a youth ball league, and in the Land of Fruits and Nuts, where if little Susie objects to Johnny (who’s declared himself a “she”) using the girl’s locker room, she can be punished for “bullying.”  As the guy on the radio here said, “Of course, this would never ever fly in Texas.”  Not now, maybe, but as goes California, so goes the nation, and Left-Coast-style political-correctness has been gradually but surely spreading across the country.

That “mercy rule,” of course, does absolutely nothing to encourage actual sportsmanship, but rather punishes honest success and forces payment to enforce “equality” and compensate for hurt feelings.  What better way to prepare the kids for citizenship in Obama’s socialist Ameritopia?

For whatever its other problems, sports remain one of the last mainstream American institutions based on pure meritocracy (play well, you win, play badly you lose, and if you play really badly you’re cut from the team), untainted by political correctness and false notions of “equality” and “fairness.”  Once sports are infected with pc pansiedom, there is indeed no hope.  The game is lost.

Gipper quote of the day:  “The trouble with our liberal friends is not that they’re ignorant, but that they know so much that isn’t so.”

 

Btw, Happy Columbus Day!  Here’s to America, Christianity, Western Civilization, capitalism, and all that other stuff lefties love to hate!

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Habemus Papam! (Holy Smoke and Yet More Papal Bull)

Wednesday, white smoke issued from the Sistine Chapel, and soon after it was declared that former archbishop of Buenos Aires Cardinal Jorge Bergoglio had been elected Pope, taking the name Francis.  Thus ended weeks of nail-biting suspense on the part of the mainstream media concerning whether the next pope would be a “progressive” who would change the Church’s teachings on contraception, homosexuality, abortion, and the priesthood, and bring the Church into the glorious new modern era of gay marriage and womyn priestesses – or another nasty old “conservative” who would keep the Church mired in the Dark Ages of Oppression and teach what the Church has always taught for 2000 years.  I suppose the whole suspense wasn’t quite so nail-biting for me, as my money was always solidly on the latter.

I admit to being a rather lazy Catholic, and having done little research on most of the contenders for the papacy,  I was completely unfamiliar with Cardinal Bergoglio.  When scouring the news on teh interwebz for information on the new pope after first learning of his election, most of the “mainstream” news stories seemed to read mostly: “sex abuse, sex abuse, sex abuse . . . scandal, scandal, scandal . . .” (and liberals accuse the Catholic Church of being obsessed with sex).  Of course the commentary from the readers’ peanut galleries was even more depressingly predictable.  While some progressive souls took initial comfort that Bergoglio was apparently a “moderate” and a Jesuit, they soon expressed profound disappointment on finding that (in the words of one gent) he was yet another “dour homophobe” who had – gasp!—opposed the legal institution of homosexual “marriage” in Argentina.   (That profoundly inane pc epiphet “homophobe” again.  The Church has always taught that any “heterosexual” behavior outside marriage is mortally sinful as well, yet it would be just as moronic to decry the Church as “forniphobic” or “heterophobic.”)

This brings up a rather interesting issue regarding all the self-described “Catholic faithful” who are so insistent that the Church needs to change her moral teachings to match their own opinions.

If the Church can simply change her teachings on faith and morals to jive with whatever happens to be popular at the time, then what moral authority would the Church possess at all?  If Church teachings on faith and morals are changeable, and based on popular opinion – rather than on timeless eternal truth –  what’s the point of belonging to the Church in the first place?  The belief that Church teaching can be changed on whim implies that the Church’s teachings are not based on any divine authority, but merely human opinion and politics.  If you feel a need to belong to an organization governed by democratic principles and preaching sexual libertinism coupled and salvation through humanitarian good works (conveniently done by the government), there’s already such an organization for you.  It’s called the Democratic Party.  Or if you really insist on the whole churchy thing, the Episcopalians will be happy to take you in.

Before some of you get all upset, I’ll make it clear that the following is purely hypothetical, and I have faith that it will never happen; but the moment a Catholic Pope reverses the Church’s unpopular teaching on contraceptives, or abortion, or homosexuality, or any other moral matter, I will promptly leave the Church and no longer consider myself Catholic.  No, not because I place my own personal rightwing troglodyte prejudices over the teaching authority of the Church, but because such a reversal would prove the Church’s moral teachings to have no divine authority built on the Rock of Peter and the Fire of Truth, but to be built on the shifting sands of human opinion.  If Church moral teaching is nothing more than a weather vane blowing in the winds of popular opinion, there is no reason for me to subjugate myself to it.

On the other hand, if you are an unbeliever, and consider the Catholic Faith to be a bunch of superstitious nonsense, then, really, why should you even care what the Pope teaches?  I myself am not inclined to insist that Mormon leaders, or the head of the Church of Scientology, change their teachings to be closer to my own beliefs.  Indeed, I think effort would be better spent trying to get people out of those absurd cults, and to know the actual truth.

But I suppose the reality is that liberals both outside and inside the Church – having no tolerance for any beliefs or viewpoints outside the dictates of political correctness- want to turn the Catholic Church into nothing more than yet another mouthpiece for liberal political opinion.

Another thing I find both amusing and confounding is how those demanding change in Church teaching seem to always explicitly or implicitly blame the evils of sex abuse and its cover up in the Church on the Church’s rigid “conservatism” and doctrinal orthodoxy, and talk as though somehow more liberalism in the Church, with a good dose of “gay marriage” and womyn priestesses, would fix the problem.  However, many of the bishops most guilty in the cover-up of priestly sexual abuse were anything but conservative.  The disgraced Cardinal Mahoney, for instance, pretty much epitomized “liberal Catholicism,” and has been a bane of “conservative” and orthodox Catholics for decades.  As had the notoriously liberal and heterodox Archbishop Weakland of Milwaukee, who was involved in one of the first of the major sex scandals to come to light.

While there are shrieks of condemnation and gloom-and-doom for the Church from both the left and the hysterical “rad-trad” right, I think we can rest assured that, for whatever the pros and cons of his reign, will continue preaching the exact same Faith and moral truths that his predecessors have since St. Peter.  May God grant him a long, holy, and glorious reign.

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Through Polarized Lenses

There’s a new book out by Jeffrey Bell, The Case for Polarized Politics, which makes the shocking argument that campaigning on “divisive” “social issues” can in fact be a winning campaign strategy for conservative politicians. (I learned of the book thanks to a review by Phil Lawler on CatholicCulture.org.) As I have not, as of yet, read the book, I will not discuss it further in this rant. But today I will rant on an old and more basic pet peeve of mine: the common and long-standing practice by those of the Left of denouncing everyone and everything to their right as “polarizing” or “divisive.”

Whenever somebody says something or takes a stance that’s in anyways at odds with liberal politically-correct orthodox opinion, you can always count on somebody on the left condemning it as “polarizing” or “divisive” – whether it’s Republican congressmen who vote against any one of Obama’s schemes, conservative talk-radio hosts, or anyone else not fully on board with the whole lefty program. Apparently we need to just shut up and gather together holding hands and singing Kumbaya in unified solidarity behind Dear Leader.

For instance, I recall a few years ago, while looking up local independent country singer Austin Cunningham’s song “Guns and Religion,” reading a post on a Texas music blog which denounced the tune as “divisive garbage” which should not receive airplay. I mean, how dare a musician sing a song with anything but a leftwing message! Of course songs with lefty protest undertones, for example, criticizing Bush or the Iraq War (actually not uncommon in the Texas indie music scene), are generally praised by the likes of that hipster music blogger as courageous truth-telling. But if you put out a little number singing the praises of guns and religion while knocking Dear Leader, you’d better shut up, lest your dissent stir up “division” amongst the hoi polloi.

When you strip away the attempts at high-minded rhetoric, this line of attack translates to simply, “Agree with us or shut the hell up!” Not exactly in keeping with lefties’ self-image as rational, tolerant, open-minded folks immune from the constraints of authoritarian thought. In fact, I can’t think of a stupider or lazier line of critique than condemning a point of view simply on the grounds of it being opposed to one’s own.

And this whole “divisive/polarizing” line does appear to be the almost exclusive property of the Left. I’ve certainly heard folks on the right accuse folks on the left of many things, but being “polarizing” or “divisive” is not among them. If you hear someone bitching about “polarization” or “divisiveness,” it’s a sure bet that person’s of a left-leaning persuasion. When I attack a liberal’s or leftist’s ideas or arguments, it’s because I find them wrong-headed, destructive, morally repulsive, or simply stupid, but never just because I find them “divisive” or “polarizing” (which would simply be saying that they disagree with me or other conservatives, which should go without saying).

Does it ever occur to left-wingers that many of their own favorite views and agendas are in fact “divisive” and “polarizing” to those of us who don’t share their worldview? Does it ever occur to them that there are in fact other points of view besides their own? Besides the utter lazy stupidity of the “polarizing” line of attack, I believe its prevalence in liberal rhetoric is revealing of the mindset of much of the current left.

For all its precious talk of “tolerance” and “diversity,” the Left is consistently intolerant of any diversity of opinion from its own viewpoints. For the Left, its own is the only legitimate point of view, and opposing points of view must be relentlessly silenced or marginalized.  This can be seen in the ruthless suppression of politically-incorrect ideas in much of the left-dominated worlds of academic and media institutions. (The great Mark Steyn refers to these folks as “Conformicrats” and the “Comformocracy.”) Any dissent from the notion that man-made global warming is heading us towards environmental apocalypse–or that massive government taxing, spending, and regulation is needed to save us–is dismissed as “propaganda” or “anti-science” (even if it comes from solid research at ivy-league universities), and the powers that be will ensure that the results of such studies go unpublished. Likewise with any suggestion that anything could be behind the creation and evolution of the universe and life on earth beyond blind, mindless chance (despite some very compelling evidence to the contrary from serious scientific researchers).  It can also be seen in the eagerness of many liberals to seek out any excuse to get right-leaning talk show hosts yanked off the air.  Any arguments in favor of a return to standards of “traditional morality”are denounced off-hand as “bigotry and “hate.” And any opposition to any aspects of statist “liberalism” and the notion that yet more government spending is the solution to all our ills is brushed aside as being driven by “racism” or other ugly motives, or is simply beyond the pale of educated opinion. Or, if that doesn’t stick, you can always just denounce it as “divisive.”

In countless online debates on any number of subjects I’ve read or been involved in, it seems that while conservative actually engage in reasoned argumentation, the “arguments” of those on the left consist overwhelmingly of labeling (“stupid,” bigoted,” “homophobic,” “Islamophobic,” etc., etc.), name-calling, and personal insults and ad-hominem attacks (all the while praising their own superior intelligence and open-mindedness).  There are few people more narrowly conformist and doctrinaire than the “tolerant” “free-thinking” “liberal.”

Formal censorship is in fact unnecessary when you can create a general culture of opinion in which any deviation from the party line is instantly dismissed and disregarded as simply unthinkable. Somewhere in the depths of Hell, Uncle Joe Stalin and Chairman Mao are beaming proudly.

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Not Just a Fluke

The Left has been predictably “outraged” by talk radio icon Rush Limbaugh’s comments about Georgetown law student Sandra Fluke, in which he referred to the dutiful Obama foot soldier and crusader for the cause of government-mandated “free” contraception as a “slut” and a “prostitute,” with many sponsors compliantly pulling their sponsorship of Rush’s show.

It would actually be kind of nice if all this fury was actually motivated by old-fashioned chivalry and a defense of decency and civility in speech regarding the Fair Sex.  But, of course, it is nothing of the sort. Much has already been said of the craven double-standard and hypocrisy of the Left’s calls for Rush to be silenced, while leftist “comedians” and other pundits have long regularly indulged in every kind of obscene, vulgar, and tasteless insults towards any women who dare publicly challenge leftist orthodoxy.  And of course there are no demands for silencing or pulling sponsorship of those folks’ shows from the self-appointed guardians of Civility– but instead such people are prominently wined and dined at Democratic fund-raising functions. (Bill Maher’s infamously calling Sarah Palin a “c**t” and a “t**t” is only one example. Obscene and hateful language towards conservative women has long been de rigueur among those on the left.  Here’s some good commentary on the topic from Michele Malkin. Rush’s language was in fact quite mild compared to that of the typical lefty Palin-basher.)  But, of course, such talk is not only justified in such cases, but is “courageous” “free speech” which must be celebrated, rather than condemned. (For liberals, it’s always “courageous” to verbally disparage fashionable targets such as Christians and conservatives, but hateful and bigoted to use much milder insults if they are directed against one’s Comrades in the Leftist Cause.)

We all know that Rush’s crime in reality had nothing to do with incivility towards women, and everything to do with publicly opposing Dear Leader’s agenda. Look for more of such nonsense in the future.

Not to mention that Rush was absolutely right in this case, even if his language was imprudent. Back in the benighted pre-Vatican II Dark Ages, any woman who flaunted her extra-marital sexual behavior–much less insist that you pay for her good time–would be regarded as a floozy or worse.  But, of course, we’ve “evolved” so much since then.  Today we all know that the height of Liberated Womanhood is to behave like a cheap whore.

But now, Miss Fluke is being widely hailed as “heroic” by the leftist media for her demands that others subsidize her bedroom fun on government mandate.  Just like many on the left (as well as some on the loopy libertarian right) hailed all that wild partying in the park by the kids in the Wall-stock festival (oops, I meant “protests”) as acts of heroism. Once upon a time, in a less-enlightened age, “heroism” was reserved for those who willingly underwent great personal sacrifices for the good of others.   Today, anybody who demands entitlements for one’s self at the expense of others is somehow a “hero.” We celebrate those who demand hand-outs for birth-control pills or college tutition as “heroic,” while those young men and women in the Armed Forces who daily literally risk life and limb to keep the rest of us safe, are generally either ignored, or treated merely as victims in need of our pity.

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