Monday, April 28, 2014

From Pacific To Atlantic

Here's a bit of useless trivia for you:
The Panama Canal is not the only water line connecting the Atlantic and Pacific Oceans. There's a place in Wyoming—deep in the Teton Wilderness Area of the Bridger-Teton National Forest—in which a creek splits in two. Like the canal, this creek connects the two oceans dividing North America in two parts.
 
Yes. You read that right: North America is divided in two parts by a single water line that—no matter how hard you try not to—you will have to cross to go from North to South and vice versa.
This creek divides the US connecting the Atlantic and Pacific oceans 
 
Hit the link for the full scoop.  I'm not sure how this might come in handy, but I do think it's pretty cool to know.

Saturday, April 26, 2014

Monday, April 21, 2014

Elisha, Boys, and Bears



The Bible contains some strange stuff.  I've been reading through a study on Elisha, and how he was an incredible man of faith, when I came across the oddest story that I can't recall ever hearing before.  It's 2 Kings 2:23-25, if you want to double check me (yes, it's that off the wall...).

First, some setup.  Immediately prior to this, Elisha requested a double portion of the faith of the great prophet Elijah, then witnessed Elijah being taken up into Heaven by a fiery chariot, then parted the waters of the Jordan River with Elijah's cloak.  Elisha then goes to Jericho and miraculously purifies the city's spring with some salt, saving the city from starvation and drought.

Clearly, he is a man with a direct line to God, and got the faith he requested through Elijah.  And then we see this:
23Elisha left and headed toward Bethel. Along the way some boys started making fun of him by shouting, “Go away, baldy! Get out of here!” 24Elisha turned around and stared at the boys. Then he cursed them in the name of the Lord. At once two bears ran out of the woods and ripped to pieces 42 of the boys. 25Elisha went up to Mount Carmel, then returned to Samaria.
[cue the screeching turntable...]

Wait, what?!

This great man of faith, a man capable of performing miracles matching anyone in the Bible -- including Moses and Jesus Himself -- gets mocked by some kids so he calls down bears upon them?!  And the bears rip 42 of them to pieces?!  And then he just continues on his way?!

Um.

I'm honestly not sure what to make of this.  None of it seems in character for any man of God, let alone a prophet of Elisha's stature.  If anyone can shed some insight on this, I'd love to hear it.

Sunday, April 20, 2014

Happy Easter! (It's Not About The Bunnies And Candy...)

From the book of Matthew ...
Pilate Questions Jesus
(Mark 15.2-5; Luke 23.3-5; John 18.33-38)
11Jesus was brought before Pilate the governor, who asked him, “Are you the king of the Jews?”
“Those are your words!” Jesus answered. 12And when the chief priests and leaders brought their charges against him, he did not say a thing.
13Pilate asked him, “Don't you hear what crimes they say you have done?” 14But Jesus did not say anything, and the governor was greatly amazed.
 
The Death Sentence
(Mark 15.6-15; Luke 23.13-26; John 18.39—19.16)
15During Passover the governor always freed a prisoner chosen by the people. 16At that time a well-known terrorist named Jesus Barabbas was in jail. 17So when the crowd came together, Pilate asked them, “Which prisoner do you want me to set free? Do you want Jesus Barabbas or Jesus who is called the Messiah?” 18Pilate knew the leaders had brought Jesus to him because they were jealous.
19While Pilate was judging the case, his wife sent him a message. It said, “Don't have anything to do with that innocent man. I have had nightmares because of him.”
20But the chief priests and the leaders convinced the crowds to ask for Barabbas to be set free and for Jesus to be killed. 21Pilate asked the crowd again, “Which of these two men do you want me to set free?”
“Barabbas!” they shouted.
22Pilate asked them, “What am I to do with Jesus, who is called the Messiah?”
They all yelled, “Nail him to a cross!”
23Pilate answered, “But what crime has he done?”
“Nail him to a cross!” they yelled even louder.
24 Pilate saw that there was nothing he could do and that the people were starting to riot. So he took some water and washed his hands in front of them and said, “I won't have anything to do with killing this man. You are the ones doing it!”
25Everyone answered, “We and our own families will take the blame for his death!”
26Pilate set Barabbas free. Then he ordered his soldiers to beat Jesus with a whip and nail him to a cross.
 
Soldiers Make Fun of Jesus
(Mark 15.16-21; John 19.2,3)
27The governor's soldiers led Jesus into the fortress and brought together the rest of the troops. 28They stripped off Jesus' clothes and put a scarlet robe on him. 29They made a crown out of thorn branches and placed it on his head, and they put a stick in his right hand. The soldiers knelt down and pretended to worship him. They made fun of him and shouted, “Hey, you king of the Jews!” 30Then they spit on him. They took the stick from him and beat him on the head with it.
 
Jesus Is Nailed to a Cross
(Mark 15.22-32; Luke 23.27-43; John 19.17-27)
31When the soldiers had finished making fun of Jesus, they took off the robe. They put his own clothes back on him and led him off to be nailed to a cross. 32On the way they met a man named Simon who was from Cyrene, and they forced him to carry Jesus' cross.
33They came to a place named Golgotha, which means “Place of a Skull.” 34 There they gave Jesus some wine mixed with a drug to ease the pain. But when Jesus tasted what it was, he refused to drink it.
35 The soldiers nailed Jesus to a cross and gambled to see who would get his clothes. 36Then they sat down to guard him. 37Above his head they put a sign that told why he was nailed there. It read, “This is Jesus, the King of the Jews.” 38The soldiers also nailed two criminals on crosses, one to the right of Jesus and the other to his left.
39 People who passed by said terrible things about Jesus. They shook their heads and 40 shouted, “So you're the one who claimed you could tear down the temple and build it again in three days! If you are God's Son, save yourself and come down from the cross!”
41The chief priests, the leaders, and the teachers of the Law of Moses also made fun of Jesus. They said, 42“He saved others, but he can't save himself. If he is the king of Israel, he should come down from the cross! Then we will believe him. 43 He trusted God, so let God save him, if he wants to. He even said he was God's Son.” 44The two criminals also said cruel things to Jesus.
 
The Death of Jesus
(Mark 15.33-41; Luke 23.44-49; John 19.28-30)
45At noon the sky turned dark and stayed that way until three o'clock. 46 Then about that time Jesus shouted, “Eli, Eli, lema sabachthani?” which means, “My God, my God, why have you deserted me?”
47Some of the people standing there heard Jesus and said, “He's calling for Elijah.” 48 One of them at once ran and grabbed a sponge. He soaked it in wine, then put it on a stick and held it up to Jesus.
49Others said, “Wait! Let's see if Elijah will come and save him.” 50Once again Jesus shouted, and then he died.
51 At once the curtain in the temple was torn in two from top to bottom. The earth shook, and rocks split apart. 52Graves opened, and many of God's people were raised to life. 53They left their graves, and after Jesus had risen to life, they went into the holy city, where they were seen by many people.
54The officer and the soldiers guarding Jesus felt the earthquake and saw everything else that happened. They were frightened and said, “This man really was God's Son!”
55 Many women had come with Jesus from Galilee to be of help to him, and they were there, looking on at a distance. 56Mary Magdalene, Mary the mother of James and Joseph, and the mother of James and John were some of these women.
 
Jesus Is Buried
(Mark 15.42-47; Luke 23.50-56; John 19.38-42)
57That evening a rich disciple named Joseph from the town of Arimathea 58went and asked for Jesus' body. Pilate gave orders for it to be given to Joseph, 59who took the body and wrapped it in a clean linen cloth. 60Then Joseph put the body in his own tomb that had been cut into solid rock and had never been used. He rolled a big stone against the entrance to the tomb and went away.
61All this time Mary Magdalene and the other Mary were sitting across from the tomb.
62On the next day, which was a Sabbath, the chief priests and the Pharisees went together to Pilate. 63 They said, “Sir, we remember what this liar said while he was still alive. He claimed in three days he would come back from death. 64So please order the tomb to be carefully guarded for three days. If you don't, his disciples may come and steal his body. They will tell the people he has been raised to life, and this last lie will be worse than the first one.”
65Pilate said to them, “All right, take some of your soldiers and guard the tomb as well as you know how.” 66So they sealed it tight and placed soldiers there to guard it.
 
Jesus Is Alive
(Mark 16.1-8; Luke 24.1-12; John 20.1-10)
1The Sabbath was over, and it was almost daybreak on Sunday when Mary Magdalene and the other Mary went to see the tomb. 2Suddenly a strong earthquake struck, and the Lord's angel came down from heaven. He rolled away the stone and sat on it. 3The angel looked as bright as lightning, and his clothes were white as snow. 4The guards shook from fear and fell down, as though they were dead.
5The angel said to the women, “Don't be afraid! I know you are looking for Jesus, who was nailed to a cross. 6He isn't here! God has raised him to life, just as Jesus said he would. Come, see the place where his body was lying. 7Now hurry! Tell his disciples he has been raised to life and is on his way to Galilee. Go there, and you will see him. This is what I came to tell you.”
8The women were frightened and yet very happy, as they hurried from the tomb and ran to tell his disciples. 9Suddenly Jesus met them and greeted them. They went near him, held on to his feet, and worshiped him. 10Then Jesus said, “Don't be afraid! Tell my followers to go to Galilee. They will see me there.”
 
Report of the Guard
11While the women were on their way, some soldiers who had been guarding the tomb went into the city. They told the chief priests everything that had happened. 12So the chief priests met with the leaders and decided to bribe the soldiers with a lot of money. 13They said to the soldiers, “Tell everyone that Jesus' disciples came during the night and stole his body while you were asleep. 14If the governor hears about this, we will talk to him. You won't have anything to worry about.” 15The soldiers took the money and did what they were told. The people of Judea still tell each other this story.
 
What Jesus' Followers Must Do
(Mark 16.14-18; Luke 24.36-49; John 20.19-23; Acts 1.6-8)
16 Jesus' eleven disciples went to a mountain in Galilee, where Jesus had told them to meet him. 17They saw him and worshiped him, but some of them doubted.
18Jesus came to them and said:
I have been given all authority in heaven and on earth! 19 Go to the people of all nations and make them my disciples. Baptize them in the name of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit, 20and teach them to do everything I have told you. I will be with you always, even until the end of the world.
 
 
Everything (Lifehouse)
 
 
 
 

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

It's Like A Stock Split - Twice As Much Of The Same Great Thing!

Now that classes are winding down, I've decided to jump back into the political blogging arena again.  I know some of you aren't exactly thrilled about politics, so I want to respect that.  Thus, rather than just dabbling in it on here and mixing it in with non-political content, I thought it would be best to ramp up a serious site dedicated only to political content and split it out from everything else.  My old political blog has remained dormant for the past few years, but I've imported it into a new and more robust platform, given it a new look, and am going to give it another whirl.

The intent is to simplify politics into something simple and useful by aggregating the biggest and hottest topics in politics into a single site containing helpful commentary to put things into proper context.  I want it to be a place where anyone with any level of political knowledge -- including none at all -- can come on a regular basis and get informed about what's going on in politics in a short period of time.  Knowledge and understanding among American citizens are critical to the proper functioning of our form of government, and that's what I'm trying to provide.  If you know me, then you know it'll be from a conservative point of view, but I'm serious when I say that I'm happy to entertain comments, emails, or any other form of discussion or disagreement.  The best way to learn and grow is to debate and discuss, as long as there remains a healthy respect among the parties.  I'll try to be entertaining when I can; it's tough to convey nuance and sarcasm through the written word, but I promise I'll do my best!  Ultimately, though, the point is to provide information, and some of the topics will inevitably be serious ones.  I'll keep most of the fun stuff for this blog going forward.

If you're so inclined, come check it out.  Even better, feel free to bookmark it, visit regularly, and participate in the discussion!  Even better, pass it along to others who might like it, too!

Without further ado, here's the link for the grand re-opening of There's My Two Cents:

http://theresmytwocents.wordpress.com/

I'll see you there!

$6.6 Million Worth Of Awesome

Oh. Yes. Please.

Back to Black: Bugatti Veyron Grand Sport Vitesse “Black Bess” Debuts [2014 Beijing Auto Show]

Hit the link for more info.  The short version is that they're building three of these, each of which will be sold for a cool $3.19 million.  If anyone is looking for a birthday idea for me, this would work nicely.

But what could be better than that, you ask?  Perhaps unbelievably, there is something...

W Motors Lykan Hypersport
[...]

That's me being speechless, by the way.  This supercar/rocketship looks and sounds phenomenal:

Upstart supercar companies are a dime a dozen, but W Motors is certainly the boldest of these dreamers.
Last fall, it showed what it said was a production-ready version of the Lykan Hypersport, a 245-mph piece of of geometric fury billed as the Middle East’s first supercar.
No one has had a chance to verify that top speed claim, but the Hypersport will make an appearance at the Top Marques show in Monaco later this week, making it seem a little less insubstantial.
W Motors has also said that it plans to build a factory in the United Arab Emirates sometime this year, which would make it seem even less like vaporware, and force the universe to confront the question of whether more than one of these outlandish machines can exist without irreparably damaging the space-time continuum.
The Hypersport is powered by a 3.7-liter turbocharged flat-six developed by legendary Porsche tuner Ruf. Lykan says it produces 770 horsepower, enough to launch the Hypersport to 60 mph from a standstill in 2.8 seconds, and on to that aforementioned 245-mph top speed.
It had better be quick, though, considering Lykan plans to ask $3.4 million for the privilege of owning one.
Granted, the Hypersport will come with some lavish features, including a diamond-encrusted cockpit and a “holographic display”.
Another feature is exclusivity: only seven cars will be made. That hardly seems like enough to warrant an entire factory.
Then again, Lykan plans to offer a Supersport model, which will keep the Hypersport’s Transformers styling, but is rumored to be even more powerful.
Here are a few more pictures, just because I want to:

W Motors Lykan Hypersport

W Motors Lykan Hypersport 

W Motors Lykan Hypersport

[... ... ...]
 

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Tax Day Fun!

I know, it's late in the day, but hey...I'm sure there are still a lot of people trying to finish their taxes even now.  Thus, there's still plenty of time to post some tax day fun!


Ah, good stuff.  But seriously, where does all of our tax money go once it gets sucked into the black hole vortex of the U.S. Treasury?  Here's your answer:

Where Does All the Money Go? 

That's right...almost half goes straight into the redistribution system that is the Federal government.  It's quite a big difference even from last year:



Dollar600649

Think we're heading in the right direction?  Think you can design a better system yourself?  Give it a shot here.

Since we're talking taxes, it is worth pointing out that Barack Obama has proposed over 450 tax increases since taking office:
Since taking office in 2009, President Barack Obama has formally proposed a total of 442 tax increases, according to an Americans for Tax Reform analysis of Obama administration budgets for fiscal years 2010 through 2015.
The 442 total proposed tax increases does not include the 20 tax increases Obama signed into law as part of Obamacare.
...
The number of proposed tax increases per year is as follows:
-79 tax increases for FY 2010
-52 tax increases for FY 2011
-47 tax increases for FY 2012
-34 tax increases for FY 2013
-137 tax increases for FY 2014
-93 tax increases for FY 2015

And just wait until Obamacare sets in.  Remember, up to this point it's only been a requirement for people who are self-employed or otherwise self-insured.  Just wait until the masses of people getting their insurance from their employers start getting dumped like the first wave has been over the past 6-12 months because the Obamacare tax is punishingly high and truly unaffordable!

Anyway, I find it very interesting how the smallest number on there is the election year, and the largest number is the one immediately after an election.  Coincidence, I'm sure.

Obama's looking for even more tax increases, too, starting with several liberal pet projects like soda and sugary snacks.  This madness is what prompted the spontaneous incarnation of the Tea Party.

So that's the problem.  Now let's talk solutions.  Here's one that's rapidly becoming more and more popular:

 
Sounds pretty good to me.  How about you?
 

Flight Attendant Delivers A Verbal Masterpiece

I love it when people are genuinely awesome.  Like this:


She rightly understands that transforming one of the more tedious moments of a hectic travel day into a surprising and refreshing treat is not only appreciated but heartily embraced.  I've been on a couple of Southwest flights where they've been far above average, but this lady delivers a verbal masterpiece.  It's the little things that make the day go well, you know?  Well done, Awesome Flight Attendant Lady!!!

Monday, April 14, 2014

Best And Worst Songs

From Phil Mershon at CNet comes this amusing perspective:

Marketing in social media is like bathing in mud.

They tell you it works, but the glow wears off very quickly.

This doesn't mean, however, that conferences aren't convened to discuss new techniques or fine restaurants for dinner. This doesn't mean that new methods aren't swiftly deemed infallible or that gurus don't sprout like grass after rain.

It is inevitable, therefore, that they'd sing about it.

I am grateful to PR man and Inc columnist Ed Zitron for first propagating this video, proudly peddled at Social Media Marketing World.

This, you will be moved to hear, was billed as: "Social Media's Mega Conference."

It may well have been entirely mega. However, when attendees were subjected to a megaphonic rendition of a song called "Let's Get Social," I wonder if they felt their own sociability was being severely challenged.

For here were lyrics that included:

I'm showing you things you'll like

Trying to get engagement

Here's some photos from my life

My cat, my kids, some bacon


This song was, according to the sleeve notes on YouTube, "a warm-up for a keynote panel led by Jay Baer (Convince & Convert) on the topic of 'Have We Lost the Social in Social Media?'"

I wonder whether, on hearing this complex ditty, attendees muttered that we'd lost the "melody" from "melodious" and the "sane" from "sanity."

This was billed on YouTube as "a humor-laced theme song."

Not every joke comes across as it might. I leave you, therefore, to bathe in this masterpiece that has kept me awake for the last 48 hours.

I also leave you with another verse from this seminal work:

We're looking for the secret

Of Facebook's Holy Grail

We try to keep from paying

That leads to hashtag #fail

 
Yep, it's really that awful.  She definitely referenced the correct hashtag!  Here's the song in question so you can experience it for yourself:


I think my favorite part is the monotoned "social" that the bald guy keeps interjecting, and the fact that the audience isn't participating with him.  I'm pretty sure a lot of them are thinking about how this song is going to go up on YouTube and permanently mark them as part of something terrible.

Just to cleanse the palate, my kids showed me this one a while back.  For some reason the above video made me think of it, though there are some obvious differences.  You know, like production quality, performance skill, and talent...



Happy Monday!

Friday, April 11, 2014

Hobby Lobby Hypocrisy

Much has been made lately of the news that Hobby Lobby is engaging in rampant hypocrisy.  One such example is this article from Mother Jones:
When Obamacare compelled businesses to include emergency contraception in employee health care plans, Hobby Lobby, a national chain of craft stores, fought the law all the way to the Supreme Court. The Affordable Care Act's contraception mandate, the company's owners argued, forced them to violate their religious beliefs. But while it was suing the government, Hobby Lobby spent millions of dollars on an employee retirement plan that invested in the manufacturers of the same contraceptive products the firm's owners cite in their lawsuit.
I think this is a great conversation piece, so I wanted to address it.  More than anything else, I would encourage some perspective. First, Hobby Lobby is not trying to purge all forms of contraception from their plans, just the ones that somehow eliminate a fertilized egg (i.e. thus meeting their understanding of abortion). Second, we're talking about mutual funds - Hobby Lobby has no control over what companies are represented in each fund. That's what the fund management company does. This would be like buying season tickets to the Kansas City Chiefs because I love football and then being called a hypocrite because a couple of Chiefs players play baseball on the side. The Chiefs administration team decides which players the Chiefs employ, not me. I simply participate and watch the players they provide.

The author of the article raises the fair question of why Hobby Lobby hasn't been using faith-based funds if this is a major problem for them. I would be curious to hear that answer, and I suspect we will before too long. But let's say Hobby Lobby did have the authority to pick their funds. Even then, hypocrisy isn't a compelling assertion. The article itself describes how there are up to hundreds of holdings in each of the nine funds in question, meaning there are potentially several thousand companies in question. To charge hypocrisy against Hobby Lobby in this scenario is to assert that they should have thoroughly researched the full business practices and product lines for each one of those several thousand companies (and many thousands more, if they're evaluating the remaining 15 funds, too). Furthermore, since a company's products and services change over time, they would need to be constantly evaluating each of those thousands of companies, would they not? This is an unrealistic and unsustainable effort for any company that is trying to run an actual business (and precisely why fund management companies exist - this work is their business). It seems more likely to me that Hobby Lobby didn't think much about this at all until Obamacare forced the issue a couple years ago. At that point, the chain re-evaluated its own plans first and realized they needed to make some changes (and then made them). That doesn't strike me as hypocrisy. Negligence, perhaps, but not hypocrisy.

For those who claim it is, I would ask if they have examined the thousands of companies in their own portfolios to identify and eliminate any product or service or action -- whether it be contraceptives, oil companies, weapons manufacturers, environmental damage, or whatever is important to them -- from any company that could be considered objectionable, and taken steps to remove those companies from the portfolio...and then repeating the exercise annually.

Hypocrisy is a tricky beast, isn't it?

Ferrari's New Concept Car/Spaceship

W.O.W.




If nothing else, the Ferrari 458 Italia is a great-looking car. While it was styled primarily with aerodynamics in mind, it has a presence few cars – even those with a prancing horse badge – can match.
So is it possible to improve on the 458′s winning looks. Dutch design firm Ugur Sahin decided to give it a try with the Project F.
While the stock 458 is modern, the Project F is pure science fiction. It’s impossibly low roofline looks like it was pinched from Kevin Flynn’s Tron light cycle, while the slab-like fenders look like they were milled from solid blocks of Unobtanium.
Yet this Dutch flight of fancy bears a familial resemblance to a few current supercars, especially in the rear, which looks like it was taken straight from a LaFerrari, and the wraparound windshield, which is very Koenigsegg.
The appeal of all this is obviously in the eye of the beholder, but if the goal was to create something that would stand out among other supercars, then mission accomplished.
There’s always someone who wants there Ferrari to be truly one-of-a-kind, which is why Project F isn’t the first re-styled car from Maranello, and probably won’t be the last.
In fact, Ferrari has set up its own in-house specula projects division to handle one-off builds like the recent SP Arya, and Italian coach builders have taken on custom projects like Enzo-based P4/5 commissioned by James Glickenhaus.
Ugur Sahin hasn’t found any takers for the Project F yet, but given the One Percent’s insatiable demand for mobile displays of individuality, it’s probably just a matter of time until it does.
Just for the record, my birthday is coming up.  Just sayin'... 

Thursday, April 10, 2014

Mozilla Madness



You may have heard of the kerfuffle with Mozilla CEO Brendan Eich lately.  If you haven’t, here’s a nutshell recap.

Brendan Eich is one of the co-founders of Mozilla – the software foundation responsible for the open-source Firefox browser, debatably the second most popular browser in the world – and the creator of Javascript, which is a computer language that runs pretty much throughout the Internet.  If you use a browser at all, you have Eich to thank for it.

In 2008, Eich donated $1000 of his personal money to the Proposition 8 movement, which supported traditional marriage in California.  It passed easily, with over 52% support from voters (in the ultra-blue lib-crazy California, no less).  A long series of legal battles ensued, with the end result being that liberal activist judges got it tossed out despite the clear will of the people of California.  Fast forward to March of this year, when Eich was appointed the new CEO of Mozilla.  Suddenly, gay rights activists screamed foul, and after a week of intense heat, Eich stepped down from leading the company he founded.  He had never let his personal views interfere with his work life, and no one ever accused him of doing so, but that didn’t matter to the witch hunters.

I think it’s particularly instructive to look at the statement issued on the official company blog:

Mozilla believes both in equality and freedom of speech. Equality is necessary for meaningful speech. And you need free speech to fight for equality. Figuring out how to stand for both at the same time can be hard.

Our organizational culture reflects diversity and inclusiveness. We welcome contributions from everyone regardless of age, culture, ethnicity, gender, gender-identity, language, race, sexual orientation, geographical location and religious views. Mozilla supports equality for all.

Let’s think about this.  The first paragraph makes no sense at all – why is equality necessary for meaningful speech?  Doesn’t the right to free speech inherently mean that equality isn’t necessarily guaranteed?  You can be in the minority on something and still speak your mind about it, can’t you?  That’s the whole point of the right to free speech!  In the second paragraph when it talks about welcoming contributions from everyone, their actions indicate otherwise.  An accurate statement would be that they welcome contributions from everyone who doesn’t disagree with their pop culture view of social issues.  Equality for all?  Really?  You mean like how Eich doesn’t have the right to support whatever political cause he chooses with his own personal money?  That’s equality?  And, might I once again point out that Eich was in the clear majority of Californians (and Americans in general) on his support of traditional marriage?  Funny how once again the most tolerant among us turn out to be the most intolerant of any dissent.

And, might I also point out that this was the position of one Barack Hussein Obama, President of the United States, as well (he didn’t switch positions until after he was re-elected in 2012).  Nevertheless, he’s not the only prominent person to hold that position:

“Have ye not read, that he which made them at the beginning made them male and female,” Jesus told the Pharisees [in Matthew 19], “And said, For this cause shall a man leave father and mother, and shall cleave to his wife: and they twain shall be one flesh? Wherefore they are no more twain, but one flesh. What therefore God hath joined together, let not man put asunder.”

Here, Jesus was reinforcing the message of Genesis that in marriage, man and woman are “no more twain” but rather “one flesh,” a status that eludes even the most devoted of gay couples.  This tradition dates back at least three millennia and quite likely to the beginning of human history.  Western civilization is based on this understanding.  To ask its adherents to abandon the tradition for the sake of a fad, no matter how ruthless, is to ask for more than one will get.

The Roman Catholic Church openly backed Proposition 8, as did the Knights of Columbus, the Mormon Church, the Eastern Orthodox Church, the Union of Orthodox Jewish Congregations, and Rick Warren’s Saddleback Church.  The leaders of some of these institutions may yield under relentless social pressure, as many of their younger adherents have already done, but at some point, there will be no more ground to give.

A precious few on the Left understand what is really at stake here or are willing to be honest about it:

This state of affairs prompted Andrew Sullivan, a gay author and columnist, to essentially accuse gay activists of quashing Eich's First Amendment rights: "The whole episode disgusts me – as it should disgust anyone interested in a tolerant and diverse society," he wrote. "If we are about intimidating the free speech of others, we are no better than the anti-gay bullies who came before us."

That’s exactly right.  Hypocrisy?  Hard to find a better example.  Intolerance on the part of the supposed tolerant?  No doubt.  I would guess Sullivan also understands that this viewpoint is, in fact, in the minority, and that if this is how policy and employment questions are decided, then all it takes for such favor to vanish like mist is for the pendulum to swing the other way.

Here’s the bottom line (emphasis mine):

This isn’t new:  we have seen it take place on a national level with Chick-fil-A.  Many of us have seen people outed at work for their support of Prop 8.  Busloads of angry mobsters have descended on the private property of CEOs.  We have seen Tea Parties shaken down by the IRS. We know there is a Hollywood blacklist for conservatives.  It has been a slow trickle that is fast turning into a full stream. 
This is NOT about Prop 8, gay marriage and religion.  That is just the context in which this latest abuse has come to be.  It is about the freedom -- in your personal life -- to believe as you do, support the candidates and issues you want, and to be left in peace to do so without fear of recrimination at the place where you make your livelihood. 
If competent individuals can be fired at work for their personal stances on issues that they do not bring into the workplace, then we are no longer in a free and open society, but a very tightly closed one where fear reigns and keeps us all under control--where our beliefs must yield to pre-set political and religious dogma we are force fed.   …
All of that talk about equality, justice, liberty, tolerance and diversity, is just talk.  It’s a one way street leading to oppression.  And so frenzied are they with their viewpoints -- so intent on crushing any opposing ideas-- that they are blinded to their own bigotry. 
So now, no longer is it just the government that can single you out, punish and persecute you for being a patriot or a tea partier.  Now, your employer can as well.  And then, maybe your landlord.  And, why not the local hospital?  And what about your kids in school?  …
Knowledge is indeed power, and when those in power can use their knowledge of what you do outside of work to determine your professional fate, we have indeed stepped behind the Iron Curtain.
This is simply chilling.   
When you break it all down, that’s exactly what this is: radical liberals using any and every tactic – legally, ethically, or not – to bully and intimidate political opponents into silence or submission.  Yes, it sounds like the former Soviet Union.  It should, because it’s exactly the same strategy, being conducted by people who believe exactly the same things.

It will only persist if the majority of Americans who don’t subscribe to such tactics – regardless of what they think of the actual issue of the moment – refuse to accept it.  If such a refusal doesn’t occur, it will not stop until this country is unrecognizable.


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