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Posted on 2008.02.27 at 09:00
Current Location: 75070
Current Music: Poledouris/Bernstein - Various Scores
The Theologians Cafe over on that other blogging service mentioned (in part) in a post entitled, "Supporting the Troops:"

The other day I linked one of our troops preparing young men to go out and fight the war. I asked people to go over and give him encouragement. I received a few messages that I want to paraphrase.
The comments went along the lines of "I can't support the troops or I don't feel comfortable supporting the troops. They volunteered to be in the military and therefore they have decided to fight in an unjust war."

In one of the most wonderfully ironic replies I've had the pleasure to respond to in a great while, I explained,

I served so that shitbags like that could have their opinion without governmental intervention.
I don't require their thanks.
Those shitbags spouting their filth is thanks enough for me.
God it makes me feel all warm and fuzzy inside.

What I appreciate most about my response (other than getting to use the word, "shitbag" twice) is its ability to withstand criticism. I helped defend your right to accuse me of unjustly defending your right. Brilliant! Are you allowed to have your own opinion? ABSOLUTELY! And I am allowed to have mine. As our freedoms are slowly dissolving away, I look for every opportunity I can to reinforce the ones we still have in place. I swell with pride when I hear of some liberal college student screaming anti-American sentiments. You go girl. And you're welcome ;)

Which brings me to this election.

And my own demons.

The candidates scare me. I am constantly questioning my own motivations and basis for opinions. I go back and forth. Ignorant people tell me that my opinions are prejudicial, but my opinions are not based prematurely, on preconceptions, or without merit. This does not, however, mean I cannot be swayed by additional facts. I am eager to absorb information about the candidates. That is, from sources other than mainstream media, or from people who get their information from mainstream media. It really is hard to conduct an independant study when the media covers only what they want you to know.

And since we are free to base our decisions on whatever criteria we feel is important for us...

For me, its all about choices. Being born in a different country, or a different color or a different sex is not a choice - and I'm good with that - I don't even see it as influencing my vote. However, we choose whether or not to do drugs, tap prostitutes, dance in public wearing only leather chaps, or follow a specific religious path. Its the choices people make which interest me - and why.

drax0r summed it up as such:

I expect to be allowed the freedom to practice whichever religion or lack thereof that I desire. That does not, however, mean that someone's religion should be considered irrelevant when it comes to a person's vote for representation.

I don't care what religion someone chooses to practice as far as it extends to their personal lives. If, however, I form an opinion that following a particular religion is a nut ball decision then the fact of their religion comes into play when I decide how I'm voting - not because I wish to limit how they practice their religious freedom, but because they've got a demonstrated history of making nut ball choices.

Religion is a personal decision, but its one of many thousands of personal choices that make us who we are. It's odd that almost all of our choices are fair game attack - their sexual preferences, their gambling habits, the time they smoked pot 30 years ago, their marital indiscretions - fire away.

Religion? That's a touchy subject and it's considered out-of-bounds.

You can turn the flame thrower to someone because they believe X or Z about global warming or the economy but you're not allowed to examine what conclusions a candidate draws about the origin and nature of the universe? That's the big question, man. It seems that one's religious choices would be an excellent barometer for people to use to figure out how one person's decision making process compares to our own.

Alas, to discuss it critically is taboo. Why is that?


snapper521 at 2008-02-27 19:47 (UTC) (Link)
Good post. :-D

As you well know, I hate the anti-American sentiments. :-) I would love to pop them all on the head like "little bunny foo foo" *laugh*

Anyway... I'll catch you later
ehowton at 2008-02-27 23:23 (UTC) (Link)
Symbols are given power by people. A symbol, in and of itself is powerless,
snapper521 at 2008-02-28 03:21 (UTC) (Link)
Interesting sentiment... :-) True by all indications which I can gather...
catttitude at 2008-02-27 22:55 (UTC) (Link)
You have been and will always be my savior. Thank you for fighting for me and mine.
ehowton at 2008-02-27 23:19 (UTC) (Link)
I've witnessed first hand the power of ideas, I've seen people kill in the name of them, and die defending them... but you cannot kiss an idea, cannot touch it, or hold it... ideas do not bleed, they do not feel pain, they do not love...
photogoot at 2008-02-28 02:20 (UTC) (Link)
ehowton at 2008-02-28 02:40 (UTC) (Link)
Our story begins, as these stories often do, with a young up-and-coming politician. He's a deeply religious man and a member of the conservative party. He is completely single-minded convictions and has no regard for the political process. Eventually, his party launches a special project in the name of 'national security'. At first, it is believed to be a search for biological weapons and it is pursued regardless of its cost. However, the true goal of the project is power, complete and total hegemonic domination. The project, however, ends violently... but the efforts of those involved are not in vain, for a new ability to wage war is born from the blood of one of their victims. Imagine a virus - the most terrifying virus you can, and then imagine that you and you alone have the cure. But if your ultimate goal is power, how best to use such a weapon? It is at this point in our story that along comes a spider. He is a man seemingly without a conscience; for whom the ends always justify the means and it is he who suggests that their target should not be an enemy of the country but rather the country itself. Three targets are chosen to maximize the effect of the attack: a school, a tube station, and a water-treatment plant. Several hundred die within the first few weeks. Until at last the true goal comes into view. Before the St. Mary's crisis, no one would have predicted the outcome of the elections. No one. But after the election, lo and behold, a miracle. Some believed that it was the work of God himself, but it was a pharmaceutical company controlled by certain party members made them all obscenely rich. But the true genius of the plan was the fear. A year later, several extremeists are tried, found guilty, and executed while a memorial is builterected to canonize their victims. Fear became the ultimate tool of this government. And through it our politician was ultimately appointed to the newly created position of High Chancellor. The rest, as they say, is history.
photogoot at 2008-02-28 02:58 (UTC) (Link)
A man of poor character endowed with good reputation is a deadly mix.
~photogoot 2008

Edited at 2008-02-28 07:44 am (UTC)
galinda822 at 2008-02-28 04:19 (UTC) (Link)
"Here may lie the most important effect of mass communication, its ability to mentally order and organize our world for us. In short, the mass media may not be successful in telling us what to think, but they are stunningly successful in telling us what to think about."
~Shaw & McCombs, The Emergence of American Political Issues, 1977
ehowton at 2008-02-28 19:08 (UTC) (Link)
Bingo! I'm very selective in what, when, and how I get my news.
galinda822 at 2008-02-28 21:19 (UTC) (Link)
Notice the date of that quote? 1977!
Imagine how much worse it's gotten since then. They couldn't have even imagined back then what it would become today. Geez!
CeltManX, Devlin O' Coileáin
celtmanx at 2008-02-29 05:50 (UTC) (Link)
One candidate especially scares me. His name rhymes with Osama.

Obama bad!!!
CeltManX, Devlin O' Coileáin
celtmanx at 2008-02-29 06:09 (UTC) (Link)
Since "global warming" was mentioned in this post, I would like to share this quote from a postcard I recently came across.

"Dearest- Your letter came yesterday. My it's hot here. 97 degrees today in the shade. All I do is lie under an electric fan, it's too hot to try to work today."

The letter is written by my great-grandfather Hal to his mother in Sheboygan, Wisconsin. It is post marked June 3, 1916 in Dallas, Texas.

Apparently global warming has been going on for a very long time. I guess no body noticed before now!!!

Edited at 2008-02-29 06:11 am (UTC)
ehowton at 2008-02-29 06:28 (UTC) (Link)
The seas will be lifeless in 10-years if we don't do something now. ~ Ted Danson, 1988
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