Protest

Okay, one more for the road.

Today, the US Supreme Court decided to legalize gay marriage in all 50 states. I have seen everything in my Facebook feed from people who are overjoyed that they are finally going to be able to be legally recognized as a spouse to their partner all the way to my Christian friends who are talking about how horrible this is and how the nation needs to repent and so do they or they are all going to hell.

I take issue with this. I am a Christian. I love Jesus. I’m not perfect…not by a long shot. I realize I have broken several commandments and I need forgiveness too. I fail daily as a human in my walk, so I’m not addressing this as some self-righteous know it all. My question to all on the “right” side is this: As much weight as you put on the topic of gay marriage…where is your outrage to porn? Where is your outrage to the cigarette and alcohol industries? Where is your outrage to the billboards of half-naked women all around downtown? Unless you get up in arms about these topics also, then you are nothing but hypocrites. The same passage in 1st Corinthians that you are quoting as reason for homosexuals not to marry also covers the topics of adultery, lust and the fact that your body is a temple. You see, if you look on another woman in lust then you are doomed because you have already committed adultery in your heart. How many of you good, Christian men are surfing porn or pleasing yourself with the mental image of a hot 20 year old you saw on TV instead of your 47 year old mother of 4 wife? Guess what…to hell you go. How about any of you Christians who smoke or drink? You are poisoning your temple. You better tell the cigarette manufacturers to stop peddling their wares or you could end up in eternal damnation. I guess those things are okay though, aren’t they? Or if you don’t think so, you certainly don’t feel strongly enough about it to protest anything or rant on your precious Facebook pages.

All that happened today is that it was decided to let gays and lesbians be legally bound together. They may now share in each other’s retirement funds and have access to medical information for their partners and so on and so forth. They can file taxes together like any other couple in a partnership can. How does this hurt you? How does this even effect you at all? Yes, there will be some who will want a cake for a wedding. Heaven forbid! Let’s block the cake access because that will really compromise your principles. Let me fill you in on something. Baking a cake does not mean you are celebrating or even condoning what it is for. It means you are providing a delicious cake to a paying customer. Shut your mouth and take their money.

This “stand” that the church is taking right now is doing nothing to win people for Jesus. All it is doing is showing the nation that we can be okay with one sin and not with another. I have seen a few who are approaching this correctly, in love and humility and condemning the sin while telling the “sinner’ that they are still loved and welcomed. That is still sort of messed up. That’s like saying come on over, hon, we love you…but your husband is trash. How can you not see that as a package deal?

The bottom line is this: Weather these people are going to heaven or hell is between them and Jesus…not you and your principles. Butt out. I’m just sayin…

Correctamundo Run Amok

This insanity has to stop. I can understand removing the Confederate flag from state capitals as it isn’t the state or national flag. However, removing the flag from everywhere in the nation is insane. Censorship has gone too far. I’m sorry that the flag offends so many. I’m sorry that our society has become so politically correct that common sense has gone completely out the window. I am now reading article after article about different things named for Confederate generals that they think they need to rename and different memorials and busts that they are trying to close down because it “offends” people. Here’s the thing. If you don’t like it, don’t go visit it. This nation has lost its spine. Whether the liberal left wants to admit it or not the Civil War really happened. It was a real war. What some find offensive is still very much a part of who we all are as a nation.

While I agree that slavery was horrific and wrong, the Rebel Flag was not a flag of slavery. It was a battle flag. While Southern plantations are known for being worked and cared for by slaves, we are forgetting how many slaves the North also had. General GRANT owned slaves for crying out loud. It was a very large part of our history, granted a very sad part, and also very common at the earliest parts. If we remove everything pertaining to this war or slavery, we are doing a great disservice to our country. People need to learn what happened. They need to see what lead to that so that we don’t end up back there again. Descendants of slaves need to go to these places and learn what brought their ancestors here and they need to be SO thankful that this is no longer the case as we all should. It should make people appreciate so much more the sacrifice of their ancestors and draw them closer to their history. Yes, they should feel anger towards these people who held their great, great grandparents and it should upset them that they lived in such conditions. To pretend it didn’t happen, however, is irresponsible. Take what offends you and turn it into a teaching tool if nothing else. Use these monuments as talking points.

Ellis Island is a prime example of something that meant great happiness to some but tragedy for others. Many came through those gates because they had lost everything back home. It wasn’t always bringing people here because it was a great country of freedom…there are many reasons people came. I’ve never been there, but if I did I would imagine I would realize just what people went through and be thankful that they made the effort. We all came from somewhere…none of us is native to this land, but for the true Native Americans. Some came here by choice and some by force. Some fought in wars to secure this land as their own while some were made to leave the only home they had ever known to start over because their way of life was destroyed. No matter where you fall in this scenario, you have to recognize that the events that led to being here are events that shaped your life in one way or another as an American. All our ancestors played a part.

There are memorials all over the world that remind us of atrocities that have occurred. These memorials are not there as a slap in the face to the folks affected…they are there to remember and to keep fresh in our minds what lead to these things. I think immediately of The Holocaust. Of course, I’m not comparing the two wars. There was nothing similar in their makeup, but it is something terrible that happened. The Jewish people do not ban all things German and demand that things of this nature be removed. They go to these places, and they mourn for those lost and they remember how very quickly it all came to be. We, as a world, look at these places and these memorials and we remind ourselves of what can happen when evil is present and to be ever vigilant lest it happen again.

Last, but certainly not least, we need to remember that God is in control. As terrible as slavery was, I feel like God had a plan to turn even the worst of situations into something good. Slavery isn’t a new concept. There have been slaves almost as long as there have been people on the earth. The Bible is full of stories about peoples being sold into slavery. Here’s the thing though…every time this happens, it relocates people and causes exposure to new places and new cultures. Even though the slavery itself was horrific, even when released some stayed behind because they had been joined with the peoples of that land or because they wanted to build a life there. The same could be said of the slaves in America. As horrible as the events that occurred were, had that not happened how many people would we have missed the great privilege of knowing? Would our country be as integrated as it now is had slavery not brought so many amazing people here to our soil? It is easy to hate and be angered by the past events, and rightfully so, but in order to heal as a nation we have to try to look for the positive outcome. We have to move forward, the descendants of the slave owners remembering remorsefully the deeds of our ancestors and the descendants of the slaves remembering the sacrifices of those before them. Then, we must join together in a like mind that nothing like this should ever be again. We must unite together as products of a war that split our country in two so that it never happens again. It is time to stand against the censorship of our history and claim it as our own, no matter what side you fall on. Learn from these things and move forward as ONE NATION UNDER GOD. I’m just sayin…

Enough

Today I’m on a bit of a rant. I’m kind of fed up with some things happening lately and something needs to be said.

My first topic is this: Just because I don’t agree with you or because I have faith in something greater than myself does NOT mean that I am dumb or not “intellectual.” I am so tired of people saying that if I question things like global warming or the beginning of the universe that I am somehow simple minded and should be pitied. I think it is right to question these things. Even the most accomplished scientist will tell you that we only have real data from the last century or so regarding our climate. There are things that point to certain events, etc. but as for us getting hotter in the summer and colder in the winter, etc…there is evidence that these things ebb and flow. Yes, our o-zone layer has issues and we should try to reduce our carbon footprint where possible, but our planet is far from being used up. As for the beginning of the universe…can you really look at the intricacies of the human body, the solar system, the atmosphere, etc. and tell me that all “just happened?” No way. We have a Divine Creator…I don’t even see how you could possibly argue that point. As for evolution…I actually believe that things DO evolve, but here’s the thing…GOD began the process and oversees it. HE is in control of everything. I don’t see how you could sleep at night without believing that. Any other way is simply chaos. It takes far more faith to believe in nothing than it does to believe in what is evidenced all around us.

Now, let’s address the topic of gun control, shall we? I have my conceal carry permit for the state of TN. When I carry I have a .357 magnum. I have had to actually show this weapon on only two occasions in roughly 15 years. Both involved scary men following me in traffic. In both instances, I simply had to pull the weapon out of my console and sit it on the seat next to me. The scary men backed off immediately. (Ask me about it sometime and I’ll give you the details.) I honestly think in both cases if I hadn’t done that I would likely have been involved (at the very least) in a car accident if not badly hurt. Now, if I had simply held up a knife I don’t think they would have left me alone. Just a guess. Now for the other side of the coin. Forget for a moment that I am a licensed gun owner. Do any of you know what it takes to BE a licensed gun owner? It takes a full day of training in gun safety, you have to be able to shoot 100 rounds at a target and prove that you are capable and then you have to pay a large fee and be fingerprinted by local agencies and the FBI. Now, if I were a criminal who intends to use a gun for violence WHY would I go through all that and submit my fingerprints to the FBI? The people who are shooting up the world are not people like me who are doing things the legal way. The people doing this have stolen their firearms from other people or else bought them on the down-low. You don’t hear of a permit holder getting arrested for a shooting spree. Banning the sale of guns isn’t going to stop this. Even if you ban certain kinds of guns it isn’t going to stop this. If someone wants to hurt people they WILL find a way. Take for example the home-made bombs that you can find instructions for anywhere on the internet. I don’t know about you, but I would rather be shot than set on fire or exploded. I stand a chance of walking away from a gunshot. If somebody lobs a flaming bomb at you you can pretty much call it a day. I will rest with this topic for the moment. I’m sure I will have a complete and separate rant on the subject at a later time.

Now, let’s move on to the socialist concept of taxing the rich to take care of the poor. For those of you arguing that it is our “Christian” duty, I would argue that no…it is not. What Jesus told us to do was to AS HIS CHURCH FAMILY take care of the least of these. He did NOT say, you are required to do this. For someone who gives to their church regularly and sees a difference made in the lives of the people in that community, (not just physical needs, but emotional/spiritual needs as well) to be told that I then have to give AGAIN to programs that I do not support nor condone is just wrong. I think that people in need should be taken care of, yes. I think if you pay into a program like Medicare that you should be able to have that to look forward to when you are old and unable to care for yourself. What I see happening time and again though is people who have no desire to work are bleeding our system dry. I personally know 4 people who are on welfare. One of them actually needs to be. The other three just don’t care to do anything but spit out babies they can’t care for. It’s a moral failing of our society. Kids these days are being told that sex is natural so just do it and why work for what you can be given. I agree with Bobby Jindal when he said that this country needs to turn back to GOD.

Next, I openly admit…there was a lot wrong with our country from 1900-1970 or so, but one thing we got right was that we still had some morals when it came to our bodies. Nudity was appalling and unwed mothers, although there were some, were fewer at that point. Don’t get me wrong, I’m SO thankful that the stigma of having a baby out of wedlock is over. This happens to the best of people and can be a total blessing, but we shouldn’t be encouraging it. We shouldn’t have our boys exposed to half or whole naked women on every TV station you turn to or billboard you see on the interstate. The internet should do a better job of regulating who can see porn. That in and of itself has ruined more lives than I care to mention. Girls think it is okay to dress and act like there is no difference between the sexes and that they should be free to wear as little as they want. That isn’t reality though, people! Boys are boys and if they see that their bodies WILL react whether your liberal mind thinks they should or not. It’s called lust and it is one of the seven deadly sins. Reign it in. You can’t expect that these kids aren’t going to be sexually active at the tender age of 12 if you let your little girls dress like strippers and watch TV shows with no morality. It isn’t that we should be doing a better job of sex education…it is that we should be doing a better job of preventing them from WANTING to have sex in the first place. I am pretty open with my daughter and I answer every question she lobs at me. That is my job as a parent. That is NOT your job as a school. I understand that there are a lot of parents out there who will not talk to their kids about this stuff. Fine…make this the job of the guidance counsellor and then make that counsellor send home the materials discussed PRIOR to the talk with the student. Give control back to the parents and stop telling us what our kids need to learn with regards to their bodies.

The last thing I will cover today is with regard to the concept that Christian Republicans are filled with hate and do so much damage everywhere. Let me just stop you right there. The people who are inciting riots, creating gangs, breaking into houses…those aren’t typically the right-wing voting population. These are people, typically, who have come to expect that they get what they want when they want it. These people tend to vote for the liberals (if they vote at all). They aren’t backing the Mitt Romneys and the Ben Carsons of the playing field. They are backing the people they think they can get the most out of, the people who don’t believe in the death penalty, so that even if they commit heinous acts they won’t be put to death themselves. These are the people who are the problem. You may hear of one to two mass shootings a year done, admittedly, by quiet white kids. You hear about these because they are sensational. How many DAILY crimes are committed by the liberal leaning population? You know, the ones who think it is okay to burn down a city block or gang rape an innocent girl because they have to get “initiated.” Nobody wants to look at that and get all upset. Guns weren’t even used in those altercations usually, but they are equally as disturbing and wrong. So, should we ban anything flammable? Should we ban weight lifting by men so that the women have a fighting chance? Hmmm???? It’s time people take responsibility for their actions and stop blaming their parents, their weapons, their lot in life for the horrific things they do. I’m broke all the damned time…you don’t see me knocking over a 7-11!

Bottom line: If you decide to point your liberal, self-serving finger at the right, you need to remember the fingers pointing back at yourself. I’m just sayin…

Up the Flagpole

You know, I never really gave the confederate flag a lot of thought until all this “controversy” began. The more I think about it though, it does kind of make sense to take it off of state capitols, etc. I mean, the South lost that war. It would be a little like us flying the flag of England at the White House. I’m pretty sure we beat their pants off in the Revolutionary war so why would we fly their flag?

I am, however, against the abolition of the flag all together. Here’s why. I realize that the primary outcome of the war of northern aggression was, in fact, to end slavery. I’m sure that is also what the great President Lincoln would have said was the primary motivating factor. Something else I know from living in the South and touring the battle grounds and museums is this: Many of the men and boys who died in that war weren’t there to protect slavery. Many of them were too poor to even have shoes, much less slaves. For them the war was about freedom…their freedom from being ruled over by Yankees. They wanted to be able to go on living like they were used to, without new rules imposed by people thousands of miles away who had never even visited their state. Yes, there were many who were protecting the right to keep and own slaves, but we mustn’t forget that there were many other people represented by that Confederate flag. I understand why it invokes so many bad feelings for so many people. I, myself, would not want one. In fact, if the civil war were to take place today, I would likely find myself wearing blue and not gray. That being said, if someone had family who died in that war, and they choose to fly the flag, they should be allowed. If some skinhead idiot wants to claim that flag as their own, shame on them, but they have the right to do so. You can’t judge everyone who flies that flag as an enemy of the state. I know several folks, in fact, who have the flag. It isn’t an issue of slavery to them…it is just plain Southern pride.

To put it in perspective, there are some who see the US flag and think of excess and debauchery, but for most the US flag is a symbol of freedom and great pride. Should we all be judged as infidels just because we fly the flag that we are proud of and that we identify with? There are many flags that I see regularly flown by folks. Some are the Italian flag. Do I see that and think, “Mafia!” No…I see that and think that there is a family who takes pride in where they come from. Same for the flag of Mexico. I don’t immediately think “gang member!” I hold no ill will towards those folks. They are just announcing their heritage. Maybe the confederate flag deserves the same benefit of the doubt. It doesn’t automatically mean “redneck.”  Don’t judge the whole basket as ruined because of a few bad apples. I’m just sayin…

On My Soapbox

Ever since my mom got sick, I have been watching a lot of HGTV. That’s one of the few channels that doesn’t upset her. It upsets me, sometimes though. I really hope that a lot of this is scripted because, otherwise, I am about to lose all hope for humanity. Take for example the show, “Love it or List it.” The concept is great. They take a couple that has outgrown their house and they have to either find them a new house that they love or fix their current home so that it is more to their liking. I saw one of these last night that made me insane. This couple has 3 kids. They were tired of their current 3000 square foot house because there wasn’t anywhere for the kids to play and they needed more space to entertain. They would accept no smaller than a house with 5 bedrooms, a play room and an open floor plan in the kitchen/dining/living space. He took them to one house that was newly remodeled and they hated the granite countertops. The color was wrong…that is one of the first things they would change if they bought it. Understand this…a BRAND NEW GRANITE COUNTERTOP would be destroyed because they didn’t care for the color. They would look at each bedroom and comment on how small they were. They were presented with a media room that could be the kids’ playroom. Since when did having a play room constitute a “need”? When I was growing up I didn’t even have a bedroom of my own. All my toys were behind the couch in our living room. The next episode was about this family of 4 who, again, had run out of space. The more rooms they toured in their own home the more obvious their problem became. They are total slobs. They have clothes on the floor in every room and junk all over the counter tops and stuff that should be in a dresser, shoved on shelves in their closet. It was ridiculous! They don’t need a new house, they need some lessons in cleanliness and organization.

Property Brothers also sort of gets under my skin. The “needs” of the people they represent are just insane. People act like they are too good for a normal house in a suburban neighborhood. Everything has to be “updated” and “modern.” GAG!

The one show that gets it right on that channel is Fixer Upper. This is a couple that is a joy to watch. They love each other, they have a precious family, and they love what they do. The family in question will give them a budget to buy a cheaper house and then upgrade it to their needs. It is always beautiful when they finish with it and they have a budget and they stay within it. It’s a great show.

When did our generation become so spoiled? I mean, we grew up in the 80s and 90s. We didn’t have the latest electronics…heck…we were thrilled when we finally got a TV with a remote to it! Our fun was had outside until it got too dark to see. We didn’t spend all summer long lamenting our boredom. We found ways to entertain ourselves. Our parents weren’t rich…we lived 2 kids to a room. That was good for us.   It taught us a lot about sharing and respect for others. We didn’t have a play room or a media room and we survived it! So, why is it that our generation that did all these things acts like our kids can’t possibly be forced to go through such horrible conditions? When did we decide that our kids deserved better than us as though they are entitled because they came from our loins? I think our generation needs to rise up and take back all of this nonsense and start letting kids be kids. Let them play in the dirt and ride their bikes in the driveway and build tree houses that need secret passwords to enter. Stop spoiling these kids or they won’t know how to be appreciative adults, as is evident on these shows. I think they should invent a new reality show for these folks and instead of upgrading their homes they should have to go live in a hut or a tiny 1 room apartment like much of the population in other countries. That way maybe they would appreciate what they have and be thankful for it instead of worrying about what they DON’T have. I’m just sayin…

Obsessed Much?

You know, I try to be supportive of people involved in fandom, but secretly, in the back of my head I question their sanity. I have many friends who go to the sci-fi cons and dress up and stuff and that is their thing and I’m happy for them, but in my head I’m thinking “what kind of 30 something dresses up like a movie character?” On some base level I think it really does disturb me. Not in the way that I think that the person is strange…they are great people…but in the way that I would look at you if you dipped your French fries in mayonnaise. There’s just something not quite right about it.

What I have realized lately is that I have very similar feelings for Disney fans. I, myself, adore Disney. I love Disney Land and Disney World and in my book it doesn’t get any better than Winnie the Pooh or Cinderella. I am not, however, obsessed with Disney. There are some folks out there who literally know every word to every Disney song ever recorded along with every line of every movie they saw. These folks wear Disney characters all the time on their shirts and they count down the days to their Disney vacations. It’s kind of like they never really grew up. For me, it is about an occasional trip back into my childhood or perhaps it is about watching something nice with my kiddo. You aren’t, however, going to find me sitting by myself watching a cartoon movie at any given point in time (unless it stars Madea…then maybe.)

I guess what prompted all these “deep thoughts” was that I have been spending some time on Pinterest lately. When I click on the category “humor” what I get mostly is Disney obsessed people who have either drawn pictures of what Disney characters would look like today or with tattoos, etc. or I get people who are over the top obsessed with things like Downtown Abbey. I just want to shout at these folks: “IT’S JUST A SHOW!!!” Granted, there are some shows that I adore, but they don’t occupy my every thought. You won’t find me going to conventions to learn inside information about the making of the shows and you won’t find me dressing up like the characters or plastering their faces all over my house. I guess I’m just not a true fan. Maybe it’s me…maybe I’M the one who is losing it. Oh wait…I lost my mind long ago…nothing to lose. Yeah, it’s probably me anyway. I suppose it couldn’t hurt for me to be a little more into Finding Bigfoot. I could get some squatchin’ gear. I’m just sayin…

Victor/Victoria

Okay, so everyone else and their uncles are weighing in on the Bruce/Caitlyn Jenner kerfuffle so I figured I would get my opinion out there “on the record.”

I, personally, feel very sorry for this individual. You all know me by now and you know that I support the gay and lesbian communities. I believe that some folks are born with a predisposition to one or the other. To someone who is gay the thought of being with a woman is repulsive. It would be like someone telling me I had to be with a woman. No thank you. These folks should be entitled to find each other, date and eventually have some sort of civil union (even if you don’t believe in calling it marriage.) They have just as much right to be the legal voice for their partner as I do for mine, etc. and they have just as much right to have love and a lasting relationship. These are consenting adults we are discussing. No one should have to spend their lives alone to please everyone else. We aren’t talking about pedophiles here or bestiality (so don’t even go there). No one is being harmed and many couples live long, happy lives together.

I do, however, have a problem with transgender. If you choose to dress up like the opposite sex on a regular basis that is your choice. What you do not have the right to do is have surgery to completely make that transition. #1, it isn’t healthy mentally or physically. #2. It isn’t fair to deceive someone who cares about you only for them to find out you are really a dude. #3. It is horrifically confusing for their children/grandchildren if that applies. I feel like if someone really has this issue it is an actual mental illness. It would be no different than if I suddenly decided I were black or Latina inside and went through with skin coloration and facial reconstruction to make myself more so. How many people would be up in arms about that? I, as a woman, take offense to this man having surgery to be female and then having plastic surgery to be more attractive.   There is something fundamentally wrong with that. It isn’t like you are removing a tumor or reconstructing an injury…you are completely changing who and what you are. That’s my line in the sand. I’m sorry.

I do not think we should make fun of him (even though there have been some hilarious memes out there.) I feel like we should weep for this person who is so confused and so unhappy. Pour our hearts out in love to this individual and help him realize that he needs help, not surgery. Be supportive, but not enabling. Unfortunately, he doesn’t exactly have the best family unit to help him in any way. Hopefully someone close to him will have the courage to help him before it is too late.   I’m just sayin…