Sunday, November 25

The Most Dangerous Author In Britain

I may be behind on this but a red flag always goes up when the latest controversial book is burned.

On author Phillip Pullman, from an email that has been widely circulated:

"He's an atheist and his objective is to bash Christianity and promote atheism. I heard that he has made remarks that he wants to kill God in the minds of children, and that's what his books are all about. He despises C.S. Lewis and Narnia, etc. An article written about him said "this is the most dangerous author in Britain..."

The "most dangerous author in Britain." Those are some strong words. Kind of makes you want to read the books, doesn't it? The most appalling thing to me is that the movie based on the first book, The Golden Compass, was apparently watered down so as not to be as religiously offensive to Christian moviegoers. We don't want to lose profits now, do we. The director agrees:

"The whole point, to me, of ensuring that 'The Golden Compass' is a financial success is so that we have a solid foundation on which to deliver a faithful, more literal adaptation of the second and third books."

Oh, so we get sucked in by a nice adventure movie with friendly polar bears, and then they try to convert us to atheism with their sequels? Beware children everywhere! And while you're at it, don't read Salinger (promotes suicide), Poe (gloomy, isn't it?), Orwell (rebellion), Rowling (witchcraft, and now, gayness), Seuss ("green" eggs?), or any other of those brain washers...

Saturday, November 17

My Vote, According to the "Presidential Candidate Selector"

Any online quiz, whether it's Dante's Which Circle of Hell are you going to (I ended up in Limbo), or which Superhero are you (it told me I was Superman, but I like Batman more), are a little suspicious. With that in mind, I took the Presidential Candidate Selector, and here are my results of the main candidates, by percentage of my "supposed" agreement:

Barack Obama - 81%
John Edwards - 71%
Hillary Clinton - 61%
Bill Richardson - 61%
Ron Paul - 51%
John McCain - 33%
Rudy Giuliani - 28%
Mitt Romney - 24%
Fred Thompson - 22%

Wednesday, November 14

Continuing the Discussion on Pornography...

Recently, there was a great discussion on women, dating and pornography at the Soapbox. The comments soon dropped the women and dating issues and turned into just issues with porn. That discussion has now moved here. If you want to talk about women, dating, and pornography, you can go there. Otherwise, welcome! Feel free to leave your thoughts, whether they be pro, con, neutral, scholarly, annoyed, bemused, or otherwise.

Monday, November 12

Hazardous to one's health

To do within the next two to three weeks:

-890 pages to read
-33 pages to write
-4 finals
-lose and find my identity 2-3 times
-suffer from at least one existential crisis
-waste an exorbitant amount of time playing Scrabulous

Saturday, November 10

learn to live with what you are

am i a fake? do people see me differently than i see myself? than i actually am? am i considerate enough to be married to her? am i caring enough to be his father? what do people see in me—and is it accurate? can it ever be accurate? Aaagg. why cant i do better? what does better mean anyway? what is progression? what is with my spirituality? why do i have to question so much? what is emotion? i have to feel superior, or else i am nothing. i have to be competitive, have a good chance, or i am nothing. i don’t like just fitting in a meaningless role. does a bigger role even matter? Aaggg. why do i get defensive? why do i bother? why does it matter? can we both be right? what does right mean? is it more important to compromise than to stay? life is ironic. there is no meaning, yet we live. does it all come down to signals in our brains? why do i act smarter than i am? why do i need to appear a certain way? what am i doing? why do i wait to get things done? what is the meaning of doing things? why am i in this field? it seems to only be mucking up my life right now. cant i just be a locksmith or something like that? sometimes my brain tells me to feel good. i like that. its nice. my wife is pleasing on the brain. she makes delicious cookies. they are pleasing to my brain as well. maybe ill be a grocery bagger. or a wood carver. or a demolition man.

Friday, November 9

So Abortion Doesn't Matter to the Religious Right Anymore?

In 2004, it was common to hear that people who voted for Bush were doing so "because of the abortion issue" (especially in Utah). Never mind anything else, that was the issue. After all, how CAN you vote for someone who kills babies? Now the Christian Coalition is backing Giuliani? What's up with that? Where have your principles gone? I have to concede, however, that Pat Robertson does not necessarily represent all republican Christians. Apparently not all of them appreciate Robertson's endorsement:

From the Times:
"It was the latest manifestation of the deep divide in the Christian conservative movement over how to balance politics and principle in the coming era after President Bush, who once so deftly brought it all together. Many former Christian conservative allies dismissed the endorsement as an inexplicable stunt. They noted that Mr. Robertson, 77, had lost much of his influence since the heady days of his second-place finish in the Iowa caucuses 20 years ago when he ran for the Republican presidential nomination. “What support he has left,” said Connie Mackey, a vice president of the public policy arm of the evangelical Family Research Council, “is obviously going to be eroded by this very strange endorsement.”

Robertson once claimed that America was not protected from 9/11 because of the acceptance of gays and abortion rights. Now he is saying that national defense is more important than gay marriage and abortion. I'm totally confused here...

Right now it looks like Giuliani and Clinton. I want to vote for Clinton because she would be the first female president. That would be absolutely historic. But I probably won't because I'm sick of the royal families running the country. So that leaves me voting for the same candidate as Robertson? Is Nader running again?

Thursday, November 8

I confess, I am a feminist. But we really need a new word. Or a new clarification of the definition.

This evening in class we talked about feminist theory (or philosophy) and how it relates to counseling. The term "feminism" arouses a lot of antipathetic affect in people, but I have a whole new (and hopefully more mature) definition for myself now. Feminism for me is not just about middle class white women, but about equality for anyone that is oppressed or treated unequally. How does feminism relate to therapy? Here are some points from my professor...

Feminist Theory and Counseling:
1-gender sensitive practice
2-highlights power in relationships (not as good or bad, just points it out)
3-confronts ALL forms of discrimination
4-the clients become their own expert
5-egalitarian and empowering
6-emphasizes conscious-raising techniques
7-has the goals of individual change and social transformation
8-encourages questioning of stereotypes

A lot of these are principles that I would like to incorporate into my own work, and life. I mean, who is against being egalitarian or confronting discrimination?

I love not only learning about new perspectives, but also when what I learn is actually something I want to incorporate into my life.

Thursday, November 1

"No time for porn cause we're too busy with Facebook." Imagine that.

According to a TIME article, looking at porn currently ranks a measly 4th in time spent online for students between the ages of 18 and 24. What comes before it? Social-networking sites! In addition, visits to porn sights have dropped ~33% in the last two years for all ages. Take that Screwtape!

From the article:
"If you chart the rate of visits to social-networking sites against those to adult sites over the last two years, there appears to be a strong negative correlation (i.e., visits to social networks go up as visits to adult sites go down). It's a leap to say there's a real correlation there, but if there is one, then I'd bet it has everything to do with Gen Y's changing habits: they're too busy chatting with friends to look at online skin. Imagine."