Thursday, August 21, 2014

Ferguson MO....Hands Up, Don't Shoot

Do we live in a zoo? Because all I see at the moment are a bunch of animals!  
Actually, to compare them to animals is unfair because most animals do not act as barbaric as what I am seeing. What am I looking at? The riots, looting and violence in Ferguson MO all because of the death of Michael Brown, who was dubbed "The Gentle Giant."  As details are emerging, Michael Brown is looking less like a "Gentle Giant" and more like a criminal, thief, thug _____________ (you can fill in the blank.  Not to long before the altercation with the cop, Brown and his friend (Dorian Johnson) strong-arm robbed a liquor store. 

 This same "friend/accomplice" is also being used as a "credible" witness to what happened, even after admitting he and Michael took part in the robbery  

They say he was unarmed but I ask you this... Can your fist be a weapon?  In this case and many others, the answer is absolutely, especially considering the police officer has broken bones in his orbital area (eyes). 
Knowing he probably was filled with adrenaline from the robbery (and pot per toxicity report) definitely gives us a glimpse of what Darren Wilson was up against.  A 6ft 4', 300lb man that is throwing a fist into your face. How would you react? I would have done the same thing!
 Did Brown go for the gun, we may never know.  We can only take the officer's word for it, which at this point, facts are supporting.  The "witnesses" that say he was running away with his hands up, were proved wrong with the autopsy report, as there are no bullets in his back.

Darren Wilson now lives his life in fear.   He was a 6 year veteran that received a commendation for 'extraordinary effort in the line of duty' in February.  Yet people judge him without knowing any facts.  Whatever happened to innocent until proven guilty?

My biggest issue with all this is the looting and "protesting" going on after the event. Using your 1st Amendment Right to protest what you perceive is an injustice is a right that we all have in this country. That isn't what happened.  Instead of waiting till all the facts are in and then deciding what the best action to take was, they came in like a pack of wolves and destroyed everything in sight.  Why?  Will it bring Brown back?  What exactly were they protesting?  That a cop killed a criminal? Or was it only that a white cop shot a innocent black kid that was just getting ready for college?  Unfortunately as more information is revealed the picture that is forming is a criminal that went after the cop and ended up losing his life for it.  Forensics don't lie and in the end, that will tell us the full story of what did or did not happen.

Tuesday, August 05, 2014

Shades of Grey...Porn?

I usually love Matt Walsh's blogs but this one was an exception!!

There is a big difference between condemning the book and condemning the person reading the book. If you think the book is smut then you are most definitely within your right as an American and a Christian. This attack on those who read and liked the book is showing so much more about you than the reader him/her self. 

John 8:7 "When they kept on questioning him, he straightened up and said to them, "Let any one of you who is without sin be the first to throw a stone at her."

Luke 6:41 "A pupil is not above his teacher; but everyone, after he has been fully trained, will be like his teacher. 41"Why do you look at the speck that is in your brother's eye, but do not notice the log that is in your own eye? 42"Or how can you say to your brother, 'Brother, let me take out the speck that is in your eye,' when you yourself do not see the log that is in your own eye? You hypocrite, first take the log out of your own eye, and then you will see clearly to take out the speck that is in your brother's eye."

Romans 2:1
"You, therefore, have no excuse, you who pass judgment on someone else, for at whatever point you judge another, you are condemning yourself, because you who pass judgment do the same things"
Just as you can find scriptures on this kind of "evil," I can find just as many against judging and condemning other people. Just like Samantha, I am usually the one on the Christain side of most issues and defending my beliefs. If this was just about saying the book was bad and describing why I wouldn't have a problem with it, even though I may disagree. When you start name calling and casting judgement on those who don't agree with your opinion, do you really think you are answering God's calling? Are you perfect, because last I checked, nobody was. Have you ever looked at a man and thought "Wow, he is hot!" (In God's eyes you committed adultery) Have you ever looked at someone else and wish you had something of theirs? (money, car, looks, ring, job, etc) You broke one of the Ten Commandments. I try to witness to others through my actions and love, but certainly not by looking down on them and thinking your superior. That doesn't bring anyone to Christ!! If anything it pushes people away. We all make judgments every day but when you take it to this extreme and start going after people it crosses that fine line.

LOVED this response!!!! Couldn't have said it better!

Dear Matt,

I am an ultra-conservative, non-feminist, married, adult woman who generally agrees with your blogs, but I have to say, this one has left me quite insulted.

1) I don’t disagree that the book was poorly written; it was. It was awful. But so are lots of books. There is a plot, and who are we to decide what others can read or not? Your reference to stabbing your eye out with a screwdriver just rings of extreme drama to me. It sounds like the Goodreads reviews. Some reviewers would also rather stab their eyes out, as well as declare that E.L. James’ eyes should be cut out and her hands and tongue cut off so that there is no possibility of her ever writing another story. I think that is quite extreme and not very Christian, imho.

2) It is a marketing ploy, but so are many (all?) movies. They are in the business of making money by delivering films that people want to see. The ’50 Shades’ novels were a hit. It isn’t surprising or worthy of condemnation that someone saw fit to adapt this particular novel to film. We can argue the morality of bringing anything questionable to film, that’s fine, but again, it’s not exclusive to ’50 Shades’.

3) This is where my ire begins. You declare that this is anti-Christian. Perhaps it is, but not in the ways that you are getting at, and to read it or watch it does not make one anti-Christian. I read these books b/c I was a librarian and my patrons were wanting to check it out and I thought I should be informed as it relates to my job. Does that make me unChristian? This series didn’t corrupt me. It changed nothing about what I believe or think and did not lead me to sins that I would have otherwise not committed. I rolled my eyes a lot, and laughed a lot, and at the end, found myself somewhat surprised that there was actually a bit of a plot to the thing after all was said and done. I had no expectations going into it, knowing that this was Twilight fan fiction that somehow became popular, so admittedly it didn’t take much to exceed my expectations.
However, this is where I don’t agree with you. You are looking at this through a man’s perspective. Men watch/read/look at porn for a purpose, and that is not the way that women work (in general, I do not speak for ALL women). I read plenty of romance, but it’s not to ‘get off’ or for immoral purposes and I do not look at on-screen men lustfully. Women (at least some of them) are interested in these stories for the ROMANCE, not the sex. I would have had the same opinion of this novel with or without the graphic scenes. I discussed this particular blog post with a friend, and she admitted to skipping the sex scenes while she read it. They certainly didn’t add to the story. But interestingly, you DIDN’T READ IT. There is a plot. It might be a sorry one, but that is a matter of opinion, and everyone has different tastes. I don’t think men in general like romance novels. (Surprise!)
At any rate, I think it’s a stretch to compare it to porn, or at the least, it’s offensive that blanket statements and opinions are being made where they are not applicable. I stand by that also b/c I don’t think even porn affects women the way it affects men. I can’t say I’ve ever heard about a woman with porn addiction. I think that is b/c we are built differently and that kind of thing affects us differently (i.e…not at all. :P). Now, if there are full out nudity scenes in the film, which I don’t know b/c I haven’t seen it, I’m not saying I think that’s okay, but I don’t think it’s any worse than any other film that contains nudity. I find it very interesting that female nudity is much more prevalent than male, but I think that is just evidence of what I stated above; it’s because it ‘sells’ to men, while it doesn’t do much to increase women’s interest, b/c it doesn’t affect us the same.

Finally 4) as for the ‘abuse’, and ‘anti-feminism’ aspect of your conclusion, I think you are quite wrong, and you would know that if you had actually read it. For one thing, what two people do behind closed doors is no one’s business. You can argue the morality of pre-marital sex, and I wouldn’t disagree with you, but as for the MANNER in which two people have sex, that is not anyone’s business. If my husband likes to tie me up and I like it, too, then who’s business is it but ours? No, it may not be something that appeals to YOU or 90% of the population, but again, I don’t see what difference it makes and I don’t believe it’s inherently evil.
This is the key that makes me vehemently deny this is demeaning to women. Ana (the protagonist) has a choice the entire time, and she makes the choice to go along with everything b/c she LIKES it. When Christian crosses the line, and goes too far SHE LEAVES HIM. How is that anti-feminist? Ana stood up for herself and she left! I think if anything THIS shows women empowerment b/c she made it clear that she would not put up with it. And guess what? If you read the rest of the books, Christian CHANGES. He IS a little whacked, but his experience with Ana and the love they come to have changes him. Is THAT unrealistic? Probably. But that’s a romance, and that’s what happens in romances. Honestly, what happens in this romance is that they reach a compromise, satisfying both of their preferences, which is in a VERY broad sense, what makes marriage work: mutual compromise. So, even *gasp* a lesson to be learned if one knows where to look.
I don’t disagree with the immorality of ‘hooking up’ and relationships solely for sex. I don’t disagree that nudity on the big screen is too common. I don’t disagree that this story is not very well done. But once again, this isn’t exclusive to ’50 Shades’. Watch any primetime drama, or the majority of movies that are on the big screen. I can’t think of many (if any) that don’t involve these things. I feel your attack on this specific film is missing the mark. Attack them all, or none. Or attack this one, but don’t give the impression that anyone who didn’t reach your conclusions is stupid, corrupt, wicked, sinful, and anti-Christian. That is what this post made me feel. Judged. B/c I didn’t feel this way about the story. I don’t believe that reading something wicked makes you wicked or that it is corrupting, and the only thing that was morally questionable about this novel is the fact that they were not married before they had sex. Nearly all novels are going to contain scenes or events that are not moral. You wouldn’t be able to read anything if you are required to avoid them. You couldn’t watch the news, either, b/c people in real life do bad things all the time. Just b/c I read about them, doesn’t make me do them. I can read about adultery and it doesn’t make me want to go cheat on my husband. I can read about murder and not feel like killing people. And novels that contain these things aren’t wicked simply b/c they contain them. Often, reading about things like that helps drive home the reality of why they are wrong. And in THIS case, no, I don’t really believe that women are reading or watching ’50 Shades of Grey’ and deciding they need to go out and let a man tie them up and spank them, nor do I believe it’s leading women to premarital sex that aren’t already doing it anyway. There are problems, but the root goes much deeper than one novel-gone-film. If you truly are interested in convincing women not to support it, you should definitely rethink your approach. I feel you skimmed the surface, and did not truly touch on the heart of the real issues going on, while insulting everyone who didn’t hate the novel.
That being said, I don’t intend to watch the film, either, b/c as most movies go, I imagine the big screen adaptation will focus on nothing but sex & nudity, and miss the point of the novel entirely.