Pick Your Poison?

Damned If You Do

“When offered a choice between two politically intolerable alternatives, it is important to choose neither. And when that choice is presented in rival arguments and debates that exclude from public consideration any other set of possibilities, it becomes a duty to withdraw from those arguments and debates, so as to resist the imposition of this false choice by those who have arrogated to themselves the power of framing the alternatives.”
“The Only Vote Worth Casting in November” – Alasdair MacIntyre

Macintyre wrote his thoughts for the 2004 election and concluded not voting his preferred choice. This presidential election would be farcical if the consequences were not so dire – an unhinged authoritarian, who fancies himself America’s solitary savior and the continuation of the current president’s failed agenda plus the worst the Clintons and the Democratic intoleristas have to offer.  I’ll make my sentiments known to start – I am not voting for either Hillary Clinton or Donald Trump. But I will vote.

Quite a few Christians are really straining at gnats to swallow the Donald – some fancy him a carrot haired Cyrus to rescue the chosen & return them to the Promised Land (Isaiah 45; Ezra). Others resort to their own convoluted numerological computations to read between the lines and conclude that Trump is the Lord’s anointed. Wayne Grudem, Professor at Phoenix Seminary, and part of the evangelical protestant magisterium has declared “ex cathedra” that voting for Trump is a moral good. While Grudem did not say it directly but indirectly by quoting James 4:17, the opposite then is also true – not to vote for Trump is a moral evil. Besides the questionable convictions supposed “born-again” conversion and character of the Donald who has flipped flopped on every issue over the last 30 years, Grudem hopes for Trump to reverse decades of social change, judicial and legal rulings and moral drift is fantasy. His certainty that Trump will do differently or be better in office than his opponent is an implausible, unverifiable pipedream. To distort scripture & make voting for Trump a moral imperative, is a disservice to those who find themselves sorting out the dilemma that the devolution of our political system has resulted in a choice between 2 repugnant candidates.

As Thomas Sowell said “voting for an out of control egomaniac like Donald Trump would be like playing Russian roulette with the future of this country. Voting for someone with a track record like Hillary Clinton’s is like putting a shotgun to your head and pulling the trigger. And not voting at all is just giving up” (National Review – 8/2/16). It is time to demonstrate that there is more than choosing between 2 bankrupt political parties and the 2 worst candidates in recent American history. I choose not to play Russian roulette. There are alternatives. If you don’t want to be restricted to choosing between a bombastic, cruel, narcissist or a felonious prevaricator then find those alternatives & vote according to your convictions. You’ll find the American Solidarity Party, with a platform that aims at enacting pro-life, pro-justice Catholic social teaching, one for consideration.

 

Healthy church?

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What does the phrase “a healthy church” mean?

I’ve been told a church is “healthy.” What does that mean? A quick google search & five minutes later I find out that this church is $ 12,000 in the hole, has two services with less than 50 in each, and has discussed closing or merging with another nearby congregation. They are also without a pastor and expect the new one to continue traditional duties to be performed such as visiting shut-ins and existing members, attending committee meetings and building centered activities while developing vision and growth. I’m also sure attracting young people is an unspoken expectation.

How is this healthy? Because it has a nice but ageing building? Because it pays its denominational dues? It sounds more like a declining church trying to decide about hospice care. Efforts to rectify such a situation are like pumping air into a leaky tire – it lasts for a while.  At a minimum, a healthy church preaches the gospel, is filled with the Holy Spirit & makes followers of Jesus. Too many churches, trying to keep up the real estate and the budget and the doors open,  fall short.

Perfect!

Every once in a while, CBD has books for sale that are  “slightly imperfect” – I find the juxtaposition of title and description rather amusing. Consider the following titles on sale:

“Missing the Mark: Sin and Its Consequences in Biblical -Damaged Theology” (Damaged)  

– Double the damage. A good way to look at sin.

“Luther’s World of Thought” (slightly imperfect)

– No debate. Never fully agreed with Luther 100%.

“The Church: The Gospel Made Visible” (Slightly Imperfect)

Haven’t found the perfect church yet, don’t expect to, not on this planet  or in this lifetime.

“Why I Am Not an Arminian” (Slightly Imperfect)

– Depends on your view of Romans 7.  Never been a perfectionist myself.

You can find more imperfection at CBD

Dept. of Justice-Just For Some

In regards to the Dallas police murders, Attorney General Loretta Lynch stated to protesters “Do not be discouraged by those who would use your lawful actions as cover for their heinous violence. We will continue to safeguard your constitutional rights and to work with you in the difficult mission of building a better nation and a brighter future.”

That’s not what she said in regards a few months ago in regards to critics of Islamic terror-

“Now obviously this is a country that is based on free speech,” she said. “but when it edges towards violence, when we see the potential for someone lifting that mantle of anti-Muslim rhetoric or, as we saw after 9/11, violence against individuals… when we see that, we will take action…I think it’s important that as we again talk about the importance of free speech we make it clear that actions predicated on violent talk are not America. They are not who we are, they are not what we do, and they will be prosecuted.”

So “Black Lives Matter” followers who tweet “kill them all” can advocate violence and be protected by the Justice Department but anyone who connects the dots between jihad and terror will lose their constitutional rights?

Latest from the Justice-Just for Us- Dept.

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“To be clear, this is not to suggest that in similar circumstances, a person who engaged in this activity would face no consequences. To the contrary, those individuals are often subject to security or administrative sanctions.”

Justice is blind – unless your husband hangs out with the Attorney General, the Prez is your pal and you’re the Democratic nominee for president.

A Costly Freedom…

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I’m new to these parts but was able to find these local men who are worth remembering on Memorial Day.

Freedom has a cost.

WILBUR THOMAS TARWATER – Navy, Korea June 12, 1951

JOE M LOPEZ – Marine Corps. Korea, March 28, 1953

RICHARD EUGENE STAAB – Army, Viet Nam, May 17, 1969

CHARLES PRICE ROBERTS – Air Force, Viet Nam, August 12, 1972

GEORGE PAWLISH – MIA, N. Vietnam, Heavy Attack Squadron 4, USS Kitty Hawk – March 8, 1967