Mark Steyn On The Comedy Central Capitulation

Monday, April 26, AD 2010

Mark Steyn has a good post on National Review Online in regard to the Comedy Central appeasement of the jihadists that I referred to in this post here:

Meanwhile, Comedy Central — you know, the “hip,” “edgy” network with Jon Stewart, from whom “young” Americans under 53 supposedly get most of their news — just caved in to death threats. From a hateful 83-year-old widow who doesn’t like Obamacare? Why, no! It was a chap called Abu Talhah al Amrikee, who put up a video on the Internet explaining why a South Park episode with a rather tame Mohammed joke was likely to lead to the deaths of the show’s creators. Just to underline the point, he showed some pictures of Theo van Gogh, (the picture at the top of this post) the Dutch film director brutally murdered by (oh, my, talk about unfortunate coincidences) a fellow called Mohammed. Mr. al Amrikee helpfully explained that his video incitement of the murder of Matt Stone and Trey Parker wasn’t really “a threat but just the likely outcome.” All he was doing, he added, was “raising awareness” — you know, like folks do on Earth Day. On Earth Day, lame politicians dig a hole and stick a tree in it. But aggrieved Muslims dig a hole and stick a couple of comedy writers in it. Celebrate diversity!

Faced with this explicit threat of violence, what did Comedy Central do? Why, they folded like a Bedouin tent. They censored South Park, not only cutting all the references to Mohammed but, in an exquisitely postmodern touch, also removing the final speech about the need to stand up to intimidation.

Stone and Parker get what was at stake in the Danish-cartoons crisis and many other ostensibly footling concessions: Imperceptibly, incrementally, remorselessly, the free world is sending the message that it is happy to trade core liberties for the transitory security of a quiet life. That is a dangerous signal to give freedom’s enemies. So the South Park episode is an important cultural pushback.

Yet in the end, in a craven culture, even big Hollywood A-listers can’t get their message over. So the brave, transgressive comedy network was intimidated into caving in and censoring a speech about not being intimidated into caving in. That’s what I call “hip,” “edgy,” “cutting-edge” comedy: They’re so edgy they’re curled up in the fetal position, whimpering at the guy with the cutting edge, “Please. Behead me last. And don’t use the rusty scimitar where you have to saw away for 20 minutes to find the spinal column . . . “

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6 Responses to Mark Steyn On The Comedy Central Capitulation

  • I can’t begin to describe my annoyance at Comedy Central. This is the United States of America. Since when do we let radical muslims dictate what we may and may not talk about?

  • Comedy Central is just following the craven trail blazed by America’s news outlets with respect to the Motoons. I’m less disgusted with an entertainment outlet doing the same.

    The grimly funny thing is that Islam is not uniformly aniconic with respect to depictions of religious figures in general. The ban only applies to figural representations in worship spaces.

    The Shia have a history of illustrations–including the modern era–of Muhammad and Ali. Khomeini had a painting of Muhammad on his desk. In the Sunni world, the Turks (and, IIRC, the Mughals) had miniature paintings of Muhammad and others they hail as prophets. I’m absolutely certain the Mughals had no problem with figural depictions of historical figures–their miniatures are magnificent.

    Speaking of the Turks: the whitewashing of expropriated Christian churches in Constantinople did not happen right away. For example, Hagia Sophia and the Church of the Savior in Chora (now the Kariye museum) did not have their frescos and mosaics covered until the 16th and 17th Centuries. In short, the alleged dogmatic prohibition against figural depictions, even of religious figures, are not universal, and even in the Sunni world are of comparatively recent vintage.

  • Thought this was amusing apropos of our conversation on the other thread, Don. Here’s Douthat’s column today, more or less taking your side:

    Except where Islam is concerned. There, the standards are established under threat of violence, and accepted out of a mix of self-preservation and self-loathing.

    This is what decadence looks like: a frantic coarseness that “bravely” trashes its own values and traditions, and then knuckles under swiftly to totalitarianism and brute force.

    Happily, today’s would-be totalitarians are probably too marginal to take full advantage. This isn’t Weimar Germany, and Islam’s radical fringe is still a fringe, rather than an existential enemy.

    For that, we should be grateful. Because if a violent fringe is capable of inspiring so much cowardice and self-censorship, it suggests that there’s enough rot in our institutions that a stronger foe might be able to bring them crashing down.

    Evidently, he saw the same parallel as you did with Weimar Germany, while acknowledging the identification wasn’t complete.

  • I’m with Steyn 100%.

    “Happily, today’s would-be totalitarians are probably too marginal to take full advantage.”

    Today’s would-be totalitarians have infiltrated the White House.

  • Everybody Draw Mohammed Day will be on May 20.

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British Government Shows Prejudice Towards Papal Visit

Sunday, April 25, AD 2010

[Updates at the bottom of this post as of 4-25-2010 AD at 8:28pm Central time]

An internal U.K. government memo titled “Policy planning ahead of the Pope’s visit” have caused an uproar in Britain and which included the following suggestions:

  • The launching of Papal-branded condoms.
  • Blessing homosexual marriages.
  • Opening an abortion ward.

There is more, but you get the picture.

The memo was distributed to key officials in Downing Street and Whitehall.  Many recipients were not so pleased which eventually led to an investigation and finally to a public apology by the U.K. Foreign Office:

“The text was not cleared or shown to Ministers or senior officials before circulation. As soon as senior officials became aware of the document, it was withdrawn from circulation.”

“The individual responsible has been transferred to other duties. He has been told orally and in writing that this was a serious error of judgement and has accepted this view.”

“The Foreign Office very much regrets this incident and is deeply sorry for the offence which it has caused.”

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40 Responses to British Government Shows Prejudice Towards Papal Visit

  • I’m a British Subject and also a Roman Catholic and am appalled at this memo and how it portrays my country to the world.

    I’ve spent this morning contacting the relevent ministers and heads of the civil servants by letter and email.

    If you’d like to express your concern the Scottish Office is the department in charge of the visit- you can contact them by email at

    The minister concerned is Jim Murphy. The Foreign Secretary is David Miliband. He can be contacted at
    [email protected].

  • I live in the UK and am constantly apalled by the things this and other popes have said on many subjects they have no knowledge, experience or place to make comment.

    I have read the whole list its simply proposes confronting the Pope with reality of the modern world, his beliefs and policies which are at odds with the majority rational thinking people in this country.

    This just shows the moral hypocrisy of the Chatholic church.

  • “Chatholic church.”

    Rob, if you are intent on going through life as an anti-Catholic bigot, at least do so as an anti-Catholic bigot who can spell.

  • Rob, let me get this straight: because people don’t *agree* with the Pope it’s then perfectly acceptable to torment him and hurt him?

    Typical “open minded” and “tolerant” Liberal.

  • I’m British and I couldn’t be happyer that this was sent to the pope. He has the responsibility and opportunity to stand up to pedaphellia in the catholic church,instead he blames it on homosexualaty. He could help end the aids crisis in africa by condoning the uses of condoms, instead he says they dont work. This is the workings of a old, twisted and evil mind. If there is a hell I’m sure thats were he is going!

  • Why don`t you also offer condoms or aborted babies to the Dalai Lama? You bigot may not know it, but the Pope and the Dalai Lama are on the same page when it comes to defend human dignity. I am almost sure you are one of these who throw themselves at the Lama`s feet to feel cool and trendy.
    But it only shows how small your imagination is, tried up by your so-called “rationality”.

  • Matt,

    First the email was only an internal government email, not a global email.

    Second you don’t know what you’re talking about.

    You need to do your own research or at least read Catholic blogs to understand the misperceptions out there.

    And be careful who you judge that goes to Hell.

    Be merciful as your God is merciful.

    Because He will judge you as you judge others.

  • It is interesting to watch western governments, which owe their existence to Christianity, now openly ridicule and reject it. I am getting tired of it for one and make no mistake about it I will defend the church

  • Oh Britannia, what has happened to you? You were beautiful once…

  • Doreen, many thanks for your links to relevant government contacts. (and I hope that you’ll be able to see the Holy Father in person during his visit!)

    Per the Telegraph, the ‘ideal visit’ list was attached to a memo that stated, “Please protect; these should not be shared externally. The ‘ideal visit’ paper in particular was the product of a brainstorm which took into account even the most far-fetched of ideas.”

    That these sorts of insulting ideas would be the product of a government ‘brainstorm’ speaks volumes about the immaturity of the Foreign Office employees involved. Leaking it to the press seems an anti-Catholic action. But hey, we ARE the easy target these days, hmmm? If “South Park” is an indication, it’s safer to bash Christianity in general than Islam.

    Contrary to the belief of the Times reporter, I suspect that the Holy Father will take this inanity in stride.

    Praying for the safety and good health of our Holy Father as he visits England.

  • That something like this would be put together is in a sense not surprising. I could see some 20-something ex-campaign assistant, now political appointees pulling off this kind of stunt in our own government. And the grown ups at the Foreign Ministry sound rightly appalled.

    That we’ve got a couple Brits showing up here to defend the memo, however, just goes to show the old empire still hasn’t lost the sort of blokes that the Irish side of my family came to know and love over the centuries…

  • what a disppointment the UK has become!

  • This is almost as disgusting as hiding pedophiles in the church.

  • With this example of British bigotry and noting the comments of some of the Brits who have shown up to defend it, I say Thank God for 1776!

  • This is why Britain has become a society of degenerates.

    Apparently they didn’t realize that 1984 wasn’t an instruction manual, but a warning.

  • I kind of like the idea of the Pope and the Queen singing a duet together.

  • *sigh* Homophobia knows no borders. Glad I am an atheist.

  • Why would an atheist come to this website?

    When Pope Benedict XVI meets Queen Elizabeth II, I can only hope he has one question for her: “WTF?”

  • Union Jack,

    Thank you.

    I’m sure the British people are disappointed in how you engage in charitable dialogue.

  • Personally I find this whole episode amusing and find it difficult to take even slightly seriously. The catholic church is a sprawling institution keen on looking after its own interests and with lots of bazaar ideas that are counter to human instinct or out of touch with the world we live in. That’s before the issues of a former member of the Hitler Youth engaging in efforts to marginalise the seriousness of child abuse within the organisation he works for.

    All in all, this is not a serious event and while the pope is a leader of faith he is not a political statesman (due to the size of the vatican) and he is not above mockery for his ideas.

  • To Antony (April 25th 9:56pm)

    The pope can ask the Queen what he likes but she can respond however she feels best. She afterall is also a leader of faith as well as the head of state to almost a third of the worlds population.

    In effect she has greater authority than the pope and so can say whatever she feels is best.

  • The Pope has made no secret of his hatred and contempt for secular society and secular values. But secularists have values — some of which are at utter variance with the Pope’s very medieval views. So, when they are expressed, whether they refer to pedophelia, stem-cell research or the church’s attitudes to celibacy within the church itself or celibate attitudes to women generally, sexuality, aids, family, fertility-management etc., why should catholics be surprised? The civil servants are entitled to have their views — even if they are not entitled to communicate them in the fashion alleged.

    Moreover, the thing that Catholics are becoming most renowed for is their eternal preoccupation with being offended and persecuted. If you say ‘boo’ to a Catholic, he is persecuted; and yet Catholics can hold the most outrageous and dogmatic notions concerning state governance, which interferes with the rights of others — and yet they are perfectly indifferent to them.

    In Papal states,which is how most Catholic countries are run, citizens have been unable for decades to avail of divorce, the use of contraceptives or the right to arrange abortion facilities even in cases of the most violent rapes.

    What some civil servant thinks, thefore, is by comparison a minor matter even if it rightly needs to be dealt with by way of internal discipline.

    As to the Pope’s outrage, he should really make up his mind whether he is a religoius leader or simply a politician with a state and a religion of his own. That might make things easier for those who have to relate to his excursions.

    And as to his visit to the UK?

    If he doesn’t come, so what? That wouldn’t be the end of the world , would it!

    Seamus Breathnach

  • “She afterall is also a leader of faith as well as the head of state to almost a third of the worlds population.

    In effect she has greater authority than the pope and so can say whatever she feels is best.”

    This is simply delusional. The Queen is a mere figurehead and has virtually no power. The Anglican Church is in the process of becoming extinct. The Commonwealth of Nations is almost entirely a fig leaf implemented during the dissolution of the British Empire and has little substantive meaning.

  • Seamus Breathnach I assume is the author of this idiocy:

    Tito, this post is attracting a poorer quality of trolls than we are accustomed to!

  • I just wonder how quick the same people would be to make fun of Islam?

    I am proud of the fact that I am British and live in a country tolerant of all religion views. I wouldn’t mock other’s religious views and find it objectionable.

    Regarding the civil servant, I find their mockery asinine and more suited for a sixth-former than coming from someone who’s salary is paid by my taxes totally out of order and who is suppoed to be doing a job.

  • To Doreen Lambert,

    I would expect the same people would be just as quick to parody elements of other faiths, be it Islam or Buddism. The only difference is that they would probably have the better judgement and not write it down in those cases. A casual look acros the internet will show that nothing, no matter how tasteless or inappropriate can be spared from humourous mockery whether it be people, icons or religion. Perhaps it should be a relief that the memo didn’t go further and invite the pope to open an orphanage? He does seem to be having trouble from that sort of thing recently.

  • Donald R McClarey,

    You’re absolutely right in some regards about the Queen being a figurehead and her power being limited however what few powers she has, such as disolving parliament and enacting laws are substantial and it is within her rights (albeit not in her character it seems) to disolve her government or refuse to bring bills into law. So how does the Pope compare then? Does he have the final say on national laws or whether a government will be desolved for election? What true power does he hold?

    To your next point and again you are correct in that the Commonwealth is not a global force to be reckoned with however neither is the global catholic population for the simple reason that national governance is normally (always?) above the grumblings of a multilingual ultra-conservative sat in Rome.

    Anyway, back to my main point: The pope and christianity in general, whichever flavour is followed is not so special that it can’t be mocked. Especially when there is so much to mock.

  • “What true power does he hold?”

    The power to bind and to loose as given to Saint Peter by Christ Matt, the same power also possessed by all other popes throughout history. He also has the power to appeal to the consciences of men and women and converting them to Christ. His power apparently disturbs quite a few Brits in and out of office.

    As to the Queen, who personally I view as a good woman, her power is of a purely ceremonial function. If she stepped one foot outside of that role, something she is too wise to do, she would quickly learn who rules the UK, and it most certainly is not her.

  • Don,

    As far as trolls, that’s for sure.

    They are a perfect example of throwing straw man and ad hominems.

    It only goes to show how the shallow and course they are.

  • Donald,

    Firstly, thanks for a dignified response. You’ll have to forgive the pedantry but from your description it sounds like at best the popes have the same influence as any other sect or religeous leader. Anyone can appeal to a conscience and plenty of non catholics have run around the globe trying to convert people to their own brand of christianity. From your description there is nothing special about the man aside from his position in a large established organisation and so is just as open to ridicule as said leaders.

    I don’t want to deviate too far from the given topic of mockery of the pope so I won’t say any more on the queen however if you are keen to persue that thread of debate then feel free to carry on and I may respond.

    Tito, feel free to contribute more than a few lines and maybe open the debate a little wider. Of your 3 posts you’ve only contributed anthing to this discussion once and so could be accused of trolling. Coherance would be a benefit as ‘…throwing straw man…’ makes little sense unless you use the word ‘man’ as a speach stabiliser. As for the ad hominems, be specific; there is a lot of text here and reading the lot again looking for them is unnecessary.

  • Not to mention that they can’t seem to spell, nor do they have any comprehension of basic grammar. I think their stupidity speaks for itself.

  • “Anyone can appeal to a conscience and plenty of non catholics have run around the globe trying to convert people to their own brand of christianity. From your description there is nothing special about the man aside from his position in a large established organisation and so is just as open to ridicule as said leaders.”

    Popes have been subject to ridicule and much worse Matt since the days of Peter. When our popes are attacked we Catholics tend to take umbrage about it. We are funny that way. The hatred and bile that popes tend to engender detract from your contention that there is nothing special about the pope’s position. No one gets upset about, or cares, for example, about what the governing body of the Unitarian-Universalists does or does not do. As the late Lenny Bruce, heroin addict and comic of genius, said, and he despised the Church, “The Catholic Church is the church people mean when they say “the Church”.” When it comes to Christianity, there is the Catholic Church and then there is everyone else.

  • Matt,

    Thank you for proving my point.

    If the Pope is such a lowly figure as you deemed to explain, why are you bothering engaging in dialogue with us here across the pond?

  • Donald,

    Thanks again for engaging in a rational discussion, it seems that our stances have converged, or at least are converging. The mockery directed towards the pope is due to his position in the same way that many other figures are critisised.

    My conclusion is that the pope is not special and so is open to mockery causing catholics to get the hump on his behalf because they’re ‘funny that way’.

    It’s now morning in America, I hope the American readership of this like my conclusion…

  • Tito,

    I bother to engage in this because I’m amused by it. Donald McClarey has helped in this by providing rational counters to my points and while I have not accepted his statements I have been engaged in the light debate that has been provided. I’m sure that we could engage in a far more heavy series of points and counter points but this is the internet and nothing written here actually matters. I think that Donald recognised this and I can only respect that if true.

    The reason why I entered into this on an American website was because I was hopeful of finding an irrational foaming-at-the-mouth bible enthusiast who would hopefully show an exploitable weakness in discussion such as intolerance or factual errors. As it can clearly be seen no such character has appeared, probably due to the time of day.

    Anyway, over to you Tito, I prove your point do I? Which point might that be? That I throw straw, man, or that I engage in petty ad hominem attacks? Perhaps I’ve shown that I am shallow although how I may have shown that much of my character in such few words is intriguing. Alternatively I may have not proven your point at all since you’ve not made a point yet.

    Which is it?

  • irrational foaming-at-the-mouth bible enthusiast

    Not to be stereotypical, but you’d be rather hard-pressed to find that in Catholic circles, at least with all the modifiers you used. You’ll be more likely to find that sort of caricature in the Fred Phelps’ of the world.

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  • irrational foaming-at-the-mouth bible enthusiast

    It’s like me saying you watch too much BBC to come up with a that type of stereotype.

    Like Big Tex said, you’d be hard-pressed to see any of that in most Catholic circles.

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South Park, Fear and Self-Censorship

Friday, April 23, AD 2010

I confess that I have never watched South Park.  From what I have read about it, the show holds nothing sacred and has had cruel attacks on Christ and other religious figures.  Some people have given it a thumbs up for not being politically correct.  I guess the latter is true, because in an episode that aired Wednesday the South Park crew went after the ultimate sacred cow in today’s America, the founder of Islam, Mohammed.

Or rather they attempted to.  Comedy Central, obviously caving to death threats from Islamic extremists, bleeped out the portions of the broadcast aimed at Mohammed:

Comedy Central bleeped out all references to the Prophet Muhammad in Wednesday night’s episode of the animated show “South Park.”

The episode was a continuation of last week’s episode which depicted the Prophet Muhammad in a bear suit.

A radical Muslim website threatened the show’s creators following that episode.

Comedy Central confirmed to that it had censored the show, and that the episode was not available on its website.

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50 Responses to South Park, Fear and Self-Censorship

  • Matt Stone and Trey Parker are part of the problem.

    Look at their depiction of Muhammad. They were scared enough not to portray him, so they opted for a bear costume.

  • They were scared enough not to portray him, so they opted for a bear costume.

    This was a reference to an earlier episode of South Park where Comedy Central censored an image of Muhammad. Trey and Matt were basically mocking the network for their actions and making a point about the completely absurd double standard, and Comedy Central not only validated their point, but upped the ante as well. Truly remarkable.

  • I have seen South Park on occasion. It’s often hilarious, but too vulgar for me to watch in good conscience. At the same time, I don’t really get the criticism offered in the post. Sure, there’s a double standard; Comedy Central doesn’t receive many death threats from Scientologists (one of the few episodes I’ve seen), Mormons, Catholics, or many other groups. They do receive death threats with a nonzero plausibility from various Muslim groups. And so they have censored some inflammatory comments aimed at people who are threatening their employees.

    Why, exactly, does a tv network devoted to comedy have a moral obligation to stand up to Muslim extremists? Isn’t it just good business practice to take reasonable steps to protect your employees? Also, I can see why you’d object if you thought the show was a valuable contribution to society; but as you don’t, why would you care one way or the other whether it is edited to be less offensive?

  • John Henry,

    It’s my impression of the cowardice of Hollywood and their constant attacks on non-violent Christians is what Don was getting at.

    It’s to highlight how morally deprived and without standards Hollywood has… and to continue to remind the culture of these biases.


    Thanks for clearing that up. It makes much more sense that way.

  • “Why, exactly, does a tv network devoted to comedy have a moral obligation to stand up to Muslim extremists? Isn’t it just good business practice to take reasonable steps to protect your employees? Also, I can see why you’d object if you thought the show was a valuable contribution to society; but as you don’t, why would you care one way or the other whether it is edited to be less offensive?”

    We all have a moral duty in a democracy John Henry to stand up to those who choose to use murder and threats of murder to get their way. Weimar Germany is a prime example of what happens when most people decide to simply keep their heads low and not speak out against those who use violence to intimidate. I dislike what little I know of South Park intensely. I dislike far more those who use threats of homicide getting their way.

    Comedy Central is guilty of cowardice. The cowardice is more contemptible due to their pose of being courageous in giving a forum to a show like South Park which regularly butchers sacred cows. At the first hint of trouble the pose drops in an instant and they stand revealed as cowardly school yard bullies who are shocked that there are consequences to puerile insults.

  • It’s to highlight how morally deprived and without standards Hollywood has… and to continue to remind the culture of these biases.

    Again, why is it morally depraved for a comedy television channel to censor a program – making it less offensive – out of concern for the safety of its employees?

  • Again, why is it morally depraved for a comedy television channel to censor a program – making it less offensive – out of concern for the safety of its employees?

    I double down on your again and will repeat myself to clear my point.

    It is to remind people, again and again, of the moral depravity around us. Once we stop speaking out, like Don says, evil will triumph.

    Or you can continue to live in your relative lap of peace and luxury and continue slinging non-sequiturs at those of us trying to change the culture from your peanut gallery and let it slide.

  • Weimar Germany is a prime example of what happens when most people decide to simply keep their heads low

    Don, you are too well read and sensible to make this type of analogy. Censoring a vulgar comedy show that mocks Muslims in the U.S. in 2010 is not remotely analogous to the rise of the Nazi’s in 1920’s and early 1930’s Germany.

    At the first hint of trouble the pose drops in an instant and they stand revealed as cowardly school yard bullies who are shocked that there are consequences to puerile insults.

    Not really. They still ran the episode, and they have responded to countless legal threats over the years from offended parties. They are willing to accept legal risks, but not physical threats to their employees; that doesn’t seem crazy for a comedy tv channel to me. I don’t understand the content of the moral obligation you are imposing on comedy tv channels. You agree that there is little value to the programming, but state that they should ignore threats to their employees lives in order to broadcast it.

  • Maybe it’s important to point out the hypocrisy of a network that likes to pass itself off as “edgy” with all its attacks on non-violent Christians and suggestions to employees of other “less noble” networks to go fornicate with themselves.

    What Comedy Central should have done is made clear why they are engaging in a double standard by issuing a disclaimer that spelled out that the reason they don’t censor blasphemous things such as Jesus watching pornography is because Christians, despite the rhetoric of Hollywood, don’t actually turn out to be very violent when they have their Faith mocked, whereas practitioners of Islam have shown themselves to be quite violent when their faith is questioned in the arts and the media.

    The fact is that “edgy” Comedy Central is really just a bunch of cowards and bullies striking out at those who don’t fight back while shrinking from those most deserving of having their beliefs (or at least how those beliefs are often put into practice) called into question.

  • It is to remind people, again and again, of the moral depravity around us.

    But aren’t you making the case for broadcasting ‘depravity’?

    Look, this isn’t a big deal. I don’t care whether or how Comedy Central censors their programs. I’m sympathetic to the idea that Western culture needs to defend its values; I just don’t think this is the best example to make that case. It seems to me we could pick our battles better.

  • I generally disapprove of skewering religion for laughs, and maybe it isn’t Comedy Central’s job to draw the line in the sand. But if any show were going to get away with something like this, it’d be South Park. It’s disappointing that no one stands up to this kind of crap:

    “It’s not a threat, but it really is a likely outcome,” al Amrikee said, referring to the possibility that Parker and Stone could be murdered for mocking Muhammad. “They’re going to be basically on a list in the back of the minds of a large number of Muslims. It’s just the reality.”

    That kind of stuff is just crying out for ridicule. When South Park does those “Jesus and Pals” TV, they’re probably blasphemous (and sometimes funny, I’ll admit). I never issued a mafioso-sounding statement like that guy, though.

  • I think the obvious source of frustration here is not that people want to see Islam insulted, but rather the feeling that Islam is being rewarded with more respect because of the small minority of its followers who are ready and eager to behead or otherwise attack those who offend them, while Christianity is being punished because it lacks a true violent minority.

    And this is made the more galling because Christians are often scolded for allegedly being violent and oppressive.

  • but rather the feeling that Islam is being rewarded with more respect because of the small minority of its followers who are ready and eager to behead or otherwise attack those who offend them, while Christianity is being punished because it lacks a true violent minority.

    Well, but it’s not just Christianity. South Park takes on all comers – from Jews, to Mormons, to Scientologists, to politicians; it’s basically anybody in the country that doesn’t happen to have a sizable minority that issues official death threats. And even then, they ran the episode. I don’t think that really amounts to more respect for Islam; just an acknowledgment that some of its adherents are prone to violence. If anything, that results in less respect for Islam as a religion. People wouldn’t respect Catholicism more if Catholics issued death threats every time they were mocked, although it might lead to a reduction in mockery. In the end, this is not a flattering message about Islam; quite the opposite.

    And this is made the more galling because Christians are often scolded for allegedly being violent and oppressive.

    I can understand why that suggestion is galling. But this is much better understood as the idea that there are different rules for Islamic terrorists than for everyone else, than as a contrast with Christians, or Jews, or whomever. If South Park only picked on Christians this would make more sense to me. As it is, it appears like a comedy channel is being criticized for not confronting terrorists more forthrightly…I’ve never thought that was in the job description of a comedy channel, nor do I think on the merits that there is that much value to insulting religious traditions. I understand the hypocrisy objection Jay raises – and I understand the artistic expression objections no one here has raised – but it’s only hypocrisy if there’s inconsistency. The threats of Islamic extremists are different in kind than the other threats, so I see that type of inconsistency as sensible rather than hypocritical. At least, while I might want to run the episode unedited just to be contrary, I don’t blame people actually responsible for the decision for choosing otherwise.

  • But of course comedy central had no issue leaving in the parts of the same episode where Jesus was watching porn and buddha snortng coke.

  • Interesting discussion- I like John Henry’s out-of-the-box thinking on this- my first reaction is to lash out at the cowardice of Comedy Central- but really the reality is that the threat of violence is a real one and one has to be prudent. The real solution to the double-standard is for Catholics and all Christians to find a non-violent means of conveying the same kind of “threat” not to the lives but to the livelihoods of South Park’s personnel and Comedy Central as well. This is a whole lot harder than having a little violent mafia that can be summoned to break some arms and legs to get our way. But it shouldn’t surprise us that since Christ’s Way is the Truth, He wouldn’t allow us to take immoral shortcuts. And so, we resume the battle for souls in an often hostile world- My own contribution has been to stop watching larry david’s show after the “piss christ” episode even though I really really wanted to see the Seinfeld reunion bits, and I stopped watching South Park a year or two ago and even Colbert is something that I am rarely taking in anymore- I suppose it is something of a boycott, and boycott are only effective if they are huge- these things are tough to organize, but we start with ourselves and our little sphere’s of influence to get people to consider just taking a powder of such offensive programs.

  • If anything, that results in less respect for Islam as a religion. People wouldn’t respect Catholicism more if Catholics issued death threats every time they were mocked, although it might lead to a reduction in mockery. In the end, this is not a flattering message about Islam; quite the opposite.

    That’s actually precisely one of the takeaways I had to this kerfuffle. I don’t think it justifies Comedy Central’s decision, but what does it say that even a veiled threat is taken so seriously?

  • You own a business with many employees under your care. A couple employees want to stage some public spectacle sponsored by the company that you have no objection to except that protesters promise to retaliate with lethal force. What do you do?

  • “Don, you are too well read and sensible to make this type of analogy. Censoring a vulgar comedy show that mocks Muslims in the U.S. in 2010 is not remotely analogous to the rise of the Nazi’s in 1920’s and early 1930’s Germany.”

    Actually John Henry I think that Islamic Jihadists and the Nazis have quite a bit in common in regard to their use of violence and the threat of violence to achieve their ends. I also think many of the elites in our society are every bit as decadent and cowardly as the elites who ran Weimar Germany.

  • “They still ran the episode, and they have responded to countless legal threats over the years from offended parties.”

    They ran a censored episode John Henry as a sign of their capitulation. They were unafraid of legal challenges, because, as you and I as attorneys both know, they had nothing to fear from the legal challenges and much to gain from the free publicity. They gave the Jihadists a victory and gave way to death threats because they are craven cowards.

  • John Henry, we commonly come up short in various ways. We should not. We need to understand that we come up short. Lacking in physical courage and cojones is coming up short. Offering apologetics for this sort of behavior works toward breeding more of it in the coming generation, which is not to be desired.

  • AD, I believe the phenomenon you’re describing is referred to as ‘projection’ in the psychological literature. Not everyone evaluates arguments primarily through the prism of adolescent chest-thumping. Not that there is anything wrong with being an adolescent, of course. It’s a question of the proper time and place.

  • I also think many of the elites in our society are every bit as decadent and cowardly as the elites who ran Weimar Germany.

    And so…what? Comedy channels should run programs offensive to Muslims to prevent radical Islamists from over-taking our government like the Nazi’s seized power in Germany? As I said, I don’t really care one way or the other what Comedy Central does. I’d probably rather see the episode unedited; but I don’t think the arguments you’ve offered are very compelling.

  • They gave the Jihadists a victory and gave way to death threats because they are craven cowards.

    Again, what is ‘craven’ about this? It may be cowardly – most precautionary measures can be so described – but what is craven about it?

  • If Catholic programmers had bowed to threats made by Islamic extremists who did not like the orthodox Catholic perception of Islam or some key component of Islamic religious practice- like the problem of reciprocity in giving religious liberty to non-Islamic religions- then I would be upset. Catholics should not bow down to unjust demands- but Comedy Central is probably staffed by moral relativists who represent the secularist mindset well- hold to certain ideals until they become inconvenient- and switch back when they the storm has passed. The South Park approach of skewering all sacred cows will be revised according to the level of “threat” to either physical lives of the show’s creative staff or to the economic damage that a planned or spontaneous boycott would create.

  • AD, I believe the phenomenon you’re describing is referred to as ‘projection’ in the psychological literature. I would advise you not to showcase certain insecurities, intellectual or otherwise, so openly.

    I look forward to john Henry’s next blog post about how conservatives commentators need to be more reasoned, and how we should avoid ad homimem argumentation. Leading by example, as always.

  • Paul, I don’t know why you felt the need to comment there. I mean, honestly. What are you trying to accomplish? Granted, I shouldn’t have responded with an ad hominem to AD”s ad hominem. It’s bad practice. I don’t really see why you decided to get involved, though. I certainly wasn’t talking to you, and there is no need for you to be so nasty.

  • So, basically you acted like a tool, and your reaction is to admonish me.

  • I apologize, again, for responding to AD’s ad hominem in kind. There is not much else I can do. I am not going to hi-jack Don’s thread any further responding to your unnecessarily hostile remarks.

  • When someone is attacked via ad hominem or otherwise it is acceptable in my view, and in fact can be noble, for a third party to defend the person attacked.

  • Mike,

    I agree. I thought what happened was that Art Deco attacked me with an ad hominem and I responded, wrongly, in kind. Then Paul jumped in ostensibly to scold me for responding with an ad hominem, while throwing another into the mix. Was I wrong to interpret Art Deco’s remark as a childish ad hominem? If so, then I apologize both for misinterpreting and for responding as I did. As it is, I just apologize for the response.

  • John, I dunno. I suspect that all of us just allowed our passions to momentarily get the better of us, me included.

  • John Henry,

    Why are you bending over backwards to defend cowardice?

    You say you really don’t care about this issue, yet here you are a dozen posts or so into defending your view on it.

    Your attitude, if I may say so, is precisely the wrong one to take. You are distorting the comparisons others in order to continually justify a position that most of the people here rightly and instinctively know is wrong – servility and groveling in the face of a relentless and brutal enemy.

    You say,

    “Look, this isn’t a big deal. I don’t care whether or how Comedy Central censors their programs. I’m sympathetic to the idea that Western culture needs to defend its values; I just don’t think this is the best example to make that case. It seems to me we could pick our battles better.”

    We don’t get to pick our battles, John. Our battles come to us. They “pick” us.

    If we can’t stand up for ourselves over “small” things, then I question our ability to stand up over large ones.

    When dealing with an aggressive foe, boundaries must be drawn, they must be made to know that they can NEVER get away with death threats against American citizens.

    I don’t give a rats about the content of South Park. The show has its great political moments, it has also terribly insulted the Church and Christ on numerous occasions. The show’s writers are still too childish and naive to understand that the Church is the best thing that ever happened to Western civilization and is worth promoting, and not attacking; so be it.

    They’re still American citizens and they still deserve to be able to exercise their first amendment rights without fear of death threats from a group of fanatics who use violence to show how angry they are that people portray them as violent in the ultimate act of psychopathy.

    What if the Muslims threatened to blow up the studio where South Park is made unless Matt and Trey convert to Islam? Should they do it? Where do you draw the line? At what point does “safety” take a backseat to human dignity and honor?

    I would like to know.

  • I view this whole thing as a sad commentary on free speech today. The 1st amendment at its finest is meant to protect the thoughts and speech that people would die for; yet it has become merely interpreted by our society as the right to say whatever disgusting and offensive thing they can think of.

    While the creators of South Park & Comedy Central would no doubt believe themselves to be advocates of free speech (as shown by the show’s frequent attempts to push the limits of the FCC), it is telling that what they backed off as soon as any consequences were hinted at.

    That’s not to say the made the wrong decision. I don’t think unnecessary blasphemy is funny nor do I think it’s worth dying to protect the right to unnecessarily blaspheme. I just wish that they would take the same time & effort they have put into this into saying something worth saying and worth dying for.

  • John Henry, I do not think the term ad hominem means what you think it does.

    That aside, my personal biography is obscure to you, as are my insecurities and what not.

  • What if the Muslims threatened to blow up the studio where South Park is made unless Matt and Trey convert to Islam? Should they do it? Where do you draw the line? At what point does “safety” take a backseat to human dignity and honor?

    Since you’ve specifically requested that I respond, I will, but I think my shift as volunteer pinata on this thread will be over after that. I am not sure that running vulgar, self-satisfied cartoons that insult various religious traditions is a matter of ‘human dignity’ and ‘honor’. And so I’m fine leaving the decision of whether to offend Muslims in that way up to Comedy Central and the writers to work out among themselves. It’s not like we’re talking about high art or a great contribution to culture here. South Park is probably the crudest show on cable – and that’s a difficult category to win these days. Notice, most of the criticisms above are about a double standard – South Park goes after anyone else with abandon, but not Muslims. I explained above that there seems to me to be a reasonable distinction there given the threats of violence, or at least there is room for reasonable disagreement.

    Is this a type of ‘surrender’ to violence; maybe, but I would not be surrendering anything I view as particularly valuable here. A private company that runs a Comedy Channel self-censoring to make its program less offensive doesn’t bother me. When something that I value is at stake, that’s where I’ll draw the line. For instance, if the FCC or some other government group tried to coerce a private company to self censor in this manner, I’d absolutely oppose that type of government action. Or if the program in question was a debate among scholars about the Koran or Islam & violence, I’d have a problem. But, as it is, the terrorists are damaging themselves more than anyone else – and more than any episode of South Park could.

  • John Henry, I do not think the term ad hominem means what you think it does.

    That aside, my personal biography is obscure to you, as are my insecurities and what not.

    AD, now, that you’ve re-appeared, I apologize again. I am well aware of what an ad hominem is; apologies for the misinterpretation (assuming you were not intending to insult me) and response (regardless of whether you intended to insult me or not).

  • ” I am not sure that running vulgar, self-satisfied cartoons that insult various religious traditions is a matter of ‘human dignity’ and ‘honor’.”

    Way to twist the argument. It is a matter of dignity and honor to not cower before threats of violence, regardless of what one is doing.

    For their part, Matt & Trey are challenging the double standard as applied to Islam. As a point of logic, they are absolutely correct – it is inconsistent and cowardly for CC to allow them to mock Christ and other religious figures but not Mohammed. It is a clear sign and signal that Islam’s violent threats have “worked”, that they have acquired a special immunity. This is unacceptable.

    “It’s not like we’re talking about high art or a great contribution to culture here.”

    It doesn’t matter.

    “South Park is probably the crudest show on cable – and that’s a difficult category to win these days.”

    You haven’t seen Drawn Together, then… At any rate, while it is slightly off-topic, South Park may be crude but it often approaches political issues from a more mature standpoint than most cable news commentary. Sometimes I think the creators add as much vulgarity as they do as a test – if you “see through it” and watch the show for the message, you learn something. I could be wrong.

    “Notice, most of the criticisms above are about a double standard – South Park goes after anyone else with abandon, but not Muslims. ”

    Though this isn’t your point, I will say here that Matt and Trey WOULD “go after Muslims” – it is the network execs. at CC that censor them.

    The first part of the episode (it was a two parter) highlighted the fact that BEFORE the controversy in Denmark, South Park prominently featured a Mohammed in the original “Super Best Friends” episode and there was NO PROBLEM.

    Then a group of fanatics in Denmark arbitrarily decided that it was the time to start getting violent over print depictions of Mohammed, and everything changed. Frankly, as a Christian I am as disgusted as any civil libertarian at this servility. These people are bullies, and you stand up to bullies, you don’t back down.

    “When something that I value is at stake, that’s where I’ll draw the line.”

    Ok. I think that strategy is pointless, since the thing to be valued is our freedom not to be threatened by violent extremists, but whatever.

  • Why expect the Comedy Central execs to be any braver than the newspaper editors who refused to publish the Mohammed cartoons, or Western leaders who rush to preemptively denounce “hate crimes” against Muslims the second after any Muslim commits a hate crime?

    The merits and faults of South Park are secondary compared to the larger context, which is that Western governments and media (the same media which pride themselves on “speaking truth to power”) are utterly cowed by Muslim. The MSM caved on the Mohammed cartoons; Mark Steyn was hauled before the modern day equivalent of the Star Chamber in Canada for “hate crimes” (his “crime” was actually quoting a Muslim iman accurately); the French media reports on “youths” holding their nightly carbeques in the Paris suburbs without mentioning that the Renault-torching youths all belong to a certain religion; Geert Wilders is on trial for hate crimes against Muslims, although he is the one who needs police protection; Theo van Gogh was carved up in an Amsterdam street in broad daylight and none of his fellow filmmakers saw fit to mention his brutal slaying at that year’s Academy Awards. I could go on – and on. The more they bully and threaten, the more the West kowtows to their demands, to their inviolate right never to be offended, no matter how mild or unintentional the offense is. A few years ago, some company in the UK banned coffee cups depicting Porky the Pig because Muslim employees were offended by them. The Jews traditionally have never had much use for pork, but I’ll wager it never crossed the minds of even orthodox Jews to call for a ban on cups with pictures of cartoon pigs.

    The Muslim grievance society is perpetually aggrieved. They demand and demand and demand, and the West gives in and apologizes and capitulates endlessly. And the same people who do give in to the Muslims because of the very real fact of Islamic extremism fret about imaginary “tea party violence” and congratulate themselves for being daring when they insult Christians.

  • “And the same people who do give in to the Muslims because of the very real fact of Islamic extremism fret about imaginary “tea party violence” and congratulate themselves for being daring when they insult Christians.”

    That they do – and they sicken me.

  • Very interesting thread. My first instinct was to side with the snot-nosed religion-bashers over the violent psychopaths and the cowards, but really there are no role models in this story.

    I think it is the obligation of anyone in the field of communications to risk his life for human rights. We typically don’t think of it that way, but Vaclav Havel would. If you’re lucky enough to go a few decades without risking your life for something, you’re in a historical lull, but those don’t last long. The whole point of life is to pick a side.

  • Is Obama a coward for refusing to release the prisoner abuse photos?

    It’s one thing to put your own life on the line, but when you’re responsible for the lives of others, sometimes you should bite your tongue. Besides, it’s not like Comedy Central was protecting the Holy Grail. It was a cartoon. The right of Comedy Central to air a cartoon on one side and real lives on the other. I think they did the right thing.

  • Giving into a threat of murder restrainedradical merely encourages those who make the threats. It is cowardly and simply doesn’t work in the long run.

  • Some of you may be getting caught up in the vulgarity of southpark but it actually touches a lot on social and political issues. By the mere fact that they are willing to accept death threats because they believe in free speech actually says a lot about their character.

    Lets set aside the problems you have with southpark and at least acknowledge that.

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  • Of course catholics would defend the muslims because just like them they are responsible for far worse evils than ANYONE in the history of hollywood. Im glad its finally coming to light just how corrupt the holier than thou are.

  • Right. People killed in just wars waged by the Catholic Church (the “Crusades”) = a few thousand.

    People killed by atheist communists for a demented ideology that doesn’t even work = somewhere in the neighborhood of 100 million.

    No, you non-believers have us beat.

  • MR, who can possibly argue with someone who has such a keen grasp of history? For future reference I am going to exercise my prerogative of blog censorship and state that I find your assumed name offensive and any further comments under that name will go to the spam file and you will be banned from this blog. I defend the right of the South Park creators to be jerks in the face of Jihadist death threats. That does not mean that I wish to see their style of ignorant jerkiness emulated in my threads.

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11 Responses to The Infidel

  • Many errors with this premise. But let’s assume it could be as it was — would you think it good if they did a show called The Pagan about someone who thought they were baptized and found out they were not? Or someone who thought they were a priest and not?

  • That is hilarious Tito! No doubt the humor impaired will deny it, but it is!

  • Here is a clip from the Four Lions, a comedy about four inept British muslim terrorists.

  • What if someone did a show about “someone who thought they were a priest and were not?”

    I dunno about that, but I have seen that premise done in reverse — someone who WAS a priest and thought they weren’t. The character of John Black on “Days of Our Lives” (Drake Hogestyn), when he entered the story about 20 years ago or so, had been brainwashed, or had amnesia, or something, and forgotten his previous identity. Only after his beloved Marlena (Deirdre Hall) became possessed by the devil did he discover that he had been a priest in his past life, and he ended up exorcising the evil spirit from her. Then, of course, he dropped his vocation like a hot potato.

  • LOL!

    “I used an I.R.A. voice.”

    I will be putting that on my Netflix cue now.

  • There have also been several comedies where everyone thinks someone is a priest when in fact he is not.

  • Too funny… I agree that in premise it has errors. Any Jew or other religion can be accepted into the Muslim community. In Islam it is believed that every one is born Muslim – period. If you say you are Christian – Jew or other – you are wrong and need to be corrected through Dawa first.

    But this is histerical, I can only imagine how it will turn out and who will be upset about it….

  • Nice to see the Brits haven’t yet succumbed to political correctness!

  • CMinor,

    They may well be the last bastion of common sense left in Europe!

  • The fact that Islam accepts conversions from any faith (which faith doesn’t?) doesn’t delegitimate the story, since Jewishness is perceived ethnically as well as religiously. There are secular Jews just as there are secular people from a Christian background, etc. The fact is that people who’ve found out they’re Jewish halfway thru life- and there are many, for obvious reasons – are generally turned upside down by the news. What’s more interesting is why a filmmaker would feel this premise is important to us now as something to laugh at and learn from – it’s the zeitgeist and a conversation (and laughter) that needs to be had.

  • Interesting that Islam isn’t so tolerant when people convert away from Islam.

Bishop Sheen on Fatima

Wednesday, February 3, AD 2010

The things that you find on the internet!  Bishop Sheen gives a brilliant exposition of the miracle of Fatima.

Bishop Sheen believed that our Lady of Fatima would lead to the conversion of Islam.  Here are his thoughts on that subject:

Moslemism is the only great post-Christian religion of the world. Because it had its origin in the seventh century under Mohammed, it was possible to unite within it some elements of Christianity and of Judaism.

Moslemism takes the doctrine of the unity of God, His Majesty, and His Creative Power, and uses it as a basis for the repudiation of Christ, the Son of God.

Misunderstanding the notion of the Trinity, Mohammed made Christ a prophet only.

The Catholic Church throughout Northern Africa was virtually destroyed by Moslem power and at the present time (circa 1950), the Moslems are beginning to rise again.

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6 Responses to Bishop Sheen on Fatima

  • Wow – this is a totally new perspective on Christian-Muslim relations. This means that “dialogue” should really focus on Mary. Are there any follow ups on this line of thinking, on groups that took it up in their missionary efforts, even Orthodox groups perhaps?

  • Very interesting. Thanks for posting this.

  • Thanks for this Don.

    Fulton Sheen was definitely a powerful and dramatic orator. I knew of him when I studied with the Redemptorists back in ’58 and ’59 testing a vocation, and knew a little of his assertion concerning the conversion of Islam. But that’s the first time I have seen these videos, and the first time I have read the full text of his talk on Fatima.

    Excellent stuff.

  • Abp. Sheen said this more than 50 years ago. He noted the growth of anti-Christian sentiment and predicted it would increase. That is happening. But there are also reports of Muslims converting, making great sacrifices and facing death as a result.
    When Fulton J. Sheen is canonized, perhaps an additional title could be placed after his name, “Prophet”.

  • Thank you JJO2 and Don. Bishop Sheen had a great gift of communicating in simple direct terms complicated truth. I think this show on Fatima was one of his best efforts.

  • Dear writer and all

    I would like to point out that those whom submit to God’s will are called Muslims and their religion is called Islam. Not moslems, moslemism or Mohammedism, Muslims do not worship Mohammed (Peace be upon him) nor do we believe he is the founder of Islam. The name Islam and Muslims is what God calls us in the Quran, it is not a religion named after a man.

    And regarding why muslims believe Jesus (peace be upon him) is a prophet, and not Son of God or God, is answered in the following link.

    Prophet Jesus and Muhammad (Peace be upon them) in the Holy Quran and Previous Scriptures

    Other useful websites


    Prophet Mohammed (peace be upon him)

    By a German diplomat

    I hope this provides a better understanding.

    It says in your scripture “blessed are the peacemakers” I hope Jews, Christians and Muslims co-exist peacefuly.

2 Responses to Egypt: Christian Convert Asks Obama for Help

Advent and Anti-Christ, Part IV

Sunday, December 20, AD 2009

The fourth and final part of my presentation of the four sermons on the Anti-Christ delivered by John Henry Cardinal Newman before his conversion during Advent in 1835.  Part I is here, part II is here and Part III is here.

In this last sermon Newman speaks of the persecution that will attend the reign of the anti-Christ.  In Newman’s day, living memory could recall the savage persecution that the Church endured dring the initial years of the French Revolution.  In our time, we have the blood-stained last century when millions of Christians were martyred for their faith.  It is all too easy to suspect that those terrible persecutions were trial runs for the persecution of the Anti-Christ.  The last century brought to reality these words of Newman:  “Let us then apprehend and realize the idea, thus clearly brought before us, that, sheltered as the Church has been from persecution for 1500 years, yet a persecution awaits it, before the end, fierce and more perilous than any which occurred at its first rise.” Certainly all prior persecutions pale before what Christians experienced in the Terrible Twentieth.

This is an interesting passage from Newman’s sermon:  “Again, another anxious sign at the present time is what appears in the approaching destruction of the Mahometan power. This too may outlive our day; still it tends visibly to annihilation, and as it crumbles, perchance the sands of the world’s life are running out.” I assume that Newman was thinking of the decline of the Ottoman Empire of his day, the sick man of Europe.  Freed from this adversary, perhaps Europe would unite behind one man, reform or revive the Roman Empire, and bring about the conditions for the Anti-Christ.  Small wonder that Hitler was frequently deemed the Anti-Christ during his lifetime.  Of course Hitler was not the Anti-Christ, but perhaps merely one of myriads of anti-Christs who have arisen and fallen in the centuries since the coming of Christ, or perhaps he is a precursor of the Anti-Christ.

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3 Responses to Advent and Anti-Christ, Part IV

  • Actually (if I’m not mistaken), the sermons as they exist now were published as #83 in Tracts For The Times in 1838, but they are a development of a series of sermons preached in 1835.

    Are you familiar with the short postscript Newman wrote for their publication? It’s rather interesting.

  • Thank you for the info DB. I have corrected my posts to indicate 1835 as the year of delivery. I was unfamiliar with the postscript. Bishop Horsley’s letter quoted in the postscript is stunningly prophetic.

  • The passage of the letter of Bishop Horsley quoted by Newman:

    ‘The Church of God on earth will be greatly reduced, as we may well imagine, in its apparent numbers, in the times of Antichrist, by the open desertion of the powers of the world. This desertion will begin in a professed indifference to any particular form of Christianity, under the pretence of universal toleration; which toleration will proceed from no true spirit of charity and forbearance, but from a design to undermine Christianity, by multiplying and encouraging sectaries. The pretended toleration will go far beyond a just toleration, even as it regards the different sects of Christians. For governments will pretend an indifference to all, and will give a protection in preference to none. All establishments will be laid aside. From the toleration of the most pestilent heresies, they will proceed to the toleration of Mahometanism, Atheism, and at last to a positive persecution of the truth of Christianity. In these times the Temple of God will be reduced almost to the Holy Place, that is, to the small number of real Christians who worship the Father in spirit and in truth, and regulate their doctrine and their worship, and their whole conduct, strictly by the word of God. The merely nominal {108} Christians will all desert the profession of the truth, when the powers of the world desert it. And this tragical event I take to be typified by the order to St. John to measure the Temple and the Altar, and leave the outer court (national Churches) to be trodden under foot by the Gentiles. The property of the clergy will be pillaged, the public worship insulted and vilified by these deserters of the faith they once professed, who are not called apostates because they never were in earnest in their profession. Their profession was nothing more than a compliance with fashion and public authority. In principle they were always, what they now appear to be, Gentiles. When this general desertion of the faith takes place, then will commence the sackcloth ministry of the witnesses … There will be nothing of splendour in the external appearance of their churches; they will have no support from governments, no honours, no emoluments, no immunities, no authority, but that which no earthly power can take away, which they derived from Him, who commissioned them to be His witnesses.’

Advent and Anti-Christ, Part I

Sunday, November 29, AD 2009

Prior to his conversion to Catholicism, John Henry Cardinal Newman, soon to be Blessed John Henry Cardinal Newman,  preached in 1835 a series of Advent Sermons on the Anti-Christ.  I have always found them extremely intriguing, and I am going to present them on each of the Sundays in Advent this year.

In this first sermon Newman gives us an overview of the Anti-Christ and the time of his appearance.  We see in this sermon Newman’s total command of history and how he uses this knowledge to draw out the implications of the few mentions of the Anti-Christ in Scripture.  Newman intellectually was always first and foremost a historian of the highest order and he puts this talent to good and instructive use in this sermon.  When Newman converted the Church gained one of the finest intellects of the Nineteenth Century or any century for that matter.  Much of Newman’s work concerned the working out of God’s plan for salvation through human history, and his examination of the Anti-Christ places that mysterious part of revelation into that plan.

“Let no man deceive you by any means:
for that Day shall not come,
except there come a falling away first,
and that man of sin be revealed,
the son of perdition.”

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21 Responses to Advent and Anti-Christ, Part I

  • How prescient Cardinal Newman was.

    Including Mohammad as a proto-Anti-Christ. Many have backed up Newmans assertion that heretical forms of Christianity such as Nestorianism contributed to the rise of Islam.

    Hilaire Belloc I believe (I don’t recall who exactly) called Islam another Christian heresy.

    How right he was!

  • You are right, Tito. Belloc said it in “The Great Heresies.”

  • Evil begets evil. But thanfully, God begets God, and what greater good is there than God?

  • I know we can’t know the timing of these things. I also know they will happen again and again with increasing frequency and severity until the final one; however, it sounds like the good cardical is talking of a conspiracy. Are we listening? Becuase it seems most people freak out and dismiss any time I hint of a conspiracy. Makes you think hmm.

    Could it be a liberal conspiracy? I am not referring to Demomcrat liberals or even Republican liberals, just liberal thought in general. Liberalism has some great aspects. I happen to like much of libertarian (the classical liberal) thought; however, liberal is also plagued with utility, permissiveness, license and radical individualism. Could this be the Devil taking us by the hand and making us his friends in our own undoing?

    Karl Marx certaintly thought so. He developed ideas, ideologies and an ‘economic’ theory that seek to do nothing other than totally destroy Western Civ. aka Rome aka Christendom. The tool he used to present his destructive agenda is Marxism/Communism and it’s newer forms of Critical Theory hidden away in liberalism, both the neo-con and the lefty-loony viriety.

  • Vince C.,

    I like the link in your name!

    I added it to our Catholic resources list.

    Keep up the great witness to our beautiful faith!

  • One point of clarification – John Henry Cardinal Newman is not yet identified as “Blessed” that is supposed to happen next year when the Holy Father visits England. Hopefully his canonization will follow sooner rather than later.

  • Let us pray for the conversion of the Antichrist, so that he, too, might enjoy the Beatific Vision and be an endless hymn of praise of God’s Mercy.

  • Thank you Dontex! I was gettting ahead of myself. It has been a long wait for we Newman devotees! I have amended the post.

  • The antichrist has always been at work ever since he decided to be greater than God. And his work is visible. Look at those that want anything that has to do with Christianity taken out, look at all the sexuality on TV, internet and so on. Look at sexual liberation men giving themselves to men, women to women “Because they gave up the natural order “ now where have I heard those words before; check out the driving force behind religions. Islam says that if one is not converted to Islam they need to be killed. Today the war is over oil, but after the crises is over, what reason will there be to go to war. I remember reading the story of the Jewish holocaust, and in a meeting of high ranking Nazi officials the final resolution was being discussed, and one general asked “ and after we do away with the Jewish people , who will be next “. After the oil war is over whom they will persecute.
    Read the story of Sodomma and Camorra why did God destroy them and see if those same reasons are not prevailing in our society today. Oh yes my dear brothers and sisters the anti-Christ is lose, angry and wild. He knows the day of the Lord is at hand. He also knows what awaits him.
    But fear you not because as the apostle said “IF I AM WIH THE LORD, WHAT EVIL CAN BEGET ME”
    Christ be with you all.

  • No Nick I’m afraid not! To pray for the conversion of the Antichrist would be in vain. He is confirmed in evil! It would be like trying to pray for the conversion of Satan and that you must know is impossible. The prince of Darkness is confirmed in Evil for all eternity.

  • I agree with Gabriel about Satan being confirmed evil for all eternity, though I am not sure if it is applicable to the anti-Christ.

    Satan, being created an angel by God has perfect knowledge. Angels are not human but are something akin to spiritual beings that had perfect intelligence. So when he consciously chose to oppose God it was final since in his own mind he thought better of himself instead of God.

    The anti-Christ will be a man, not an angle, so he (or she) will be imperfect, hence then he may still be able to repent.

    As Saint Theresa of Avila said, she still prays for Judas because we truly don’t know if he asked for forgiveness at the moment of his death.

  • Which antichrist? Nero, Mohammad, Marx, Hitler, or The Anti-Christ?

    I think many antichrists can repent but the final Anti-Christ, I am not so sure. He may be so closely tied to Satan that there is no hope for him. Isn’t he supposed to be slain and then rise again in mockery of Christ? If so, how is that possible unless Satan is completely animating and possesing him? If he is that given over to Satan I don’t think he can return to God, not that God wouldn’t have Mercy, but rather becuase the evil is so consuming that he wouldn’t consider surrender to God anything desireable.

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  • The Anti-Christ is Satan only in the form of a human being, just as Christ is God in a human form.
    Satan nor any of the fallen angels will be pardoned or can be pardoned for their sins and crimes, this is way they hate us humans so much cause we have the opportunity to repent they can’t and do not have the opportunity to repent. They knew and saw God as He is in all his glory.
    They literally saw and understood God but decided to go against him, freely and willingly.

  • Excellent point Rafael.

    Because they are angels they have perfect knowledge, hence they would choose not to repent if they were allowed to repent.

    I am not sure on this point, but the angels that followed Lucifer hated humans because God placed them above angels I believe.

  • I suppose it is possible that Anti-Christ is Satan but it is also possible that he is just another poor power-hungry, disobendient human given over to Satan through sin. Either way he is a problem and he loses.

    Tito, we are not above the angels. To my knowledge only one creature is above the angels and she is perfectly human, the Queen of men and angels, our Blessed Virgin Mary. The rest of us are lower than the angels and we are integrated with our bodies and struggle against our flesh. You are correct about the perfect knowledge of angels and their perfect and fixed free wills. Once an angel makes a choice it is eternally fixed. St. Michael will always serve God fully and Satan aka Lucifer will always be disobedient and he knows his time is short.

    I think Satan and the fallen angels (demons) rebelled against God not because He made us higher than angels but precisely becuase He made us lower than angels. I think when God showed them that He was taking human form, a lower form than an angel, their pride was bruised. The virtue opposite the vice of pride is humility. God humbled Himself to become a small, vulnerable, cold, poor, homeless baby. Satan went nuts and a third of heaven was cast out with him.

    Come Lord Jesus!

  • I see no evidence in Scripture that the anti-Christ will be an avatar of Satan.

  • No! I don’t believe the Antichrist is Satan himself. Satan also known as the dragon, the ancient serpent of old! Who gave his power, worldly glory, status to the beast, the Antichrist to make war with the saints and to conquer them and there was given to it (by Satan) power over every tribe and people and tonque and nation.
    And later, the beast or Antichrist was captured along with the false prophet who worked wonders to lead many astray and both were cast alive into the fiery lake of burning brimstone and also those that worshipped the image of the beast.
    Shortly after that St. Michael the archangel seized the dragon, the ancient serpent, who is the devil and Satan and cast him into the bottomless pit.
    Since Satan is the prince of this world he can give his power and earthly glory to whom he likes!!!!

  • To read what the church teaches on the Antichrist go to click on encyclopedia click A find and click Antichrist.

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No Islamic Holy Sites Destroyed in 2012 Movie, Fear of Fatwa

Thursday, November 5, AD 2009

Grand Mosque of Mecca

Due to the fear of a death threat in the form of a fatwa from Muslim scholars, movie director Roland Emmerich chose not to shoot any scenes depicting the destruction of Islamic holy sites in his new end-of-the-world film, 2012.  Though Roland Emmerich says this did not stop him when filming scenes depicting the destruction of Christian landmarks such as the Sistine Chapel, Saint Peter’s Basilica, and the Christ the Redeemer statue in Rio de Janeiro.  He wanted to make sure his views of opposition to “organized religion” were not soft-pedaled in the movie 2012.

Of course, “organized religion” is a euphemism for the apostolic churches of the Catholic and Orthodox faiths.  Hence why you’ll see the dome of Saint Peter’s Basilica topple over in the 2012 film and not the Ka’aba inside the Grand Mosque of Mecca collapse.

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54 Responses to No Islamic Holy Sites Destroyed in 2012 Movie, Fear of Fatwa

  • They wont show any Jewish holy sites going up in smoke either.

  • I understand your frustration, but things are not exactly how you have presented. Hollywood doesn’t miss an opportunity or is hardly reluctant in its oft ill portrayal of Muslims as terrorists hell bent on destroying the world more than it does to any other organised religion.

    Hollywood as an industry works on what is normal, acceptable and what will sell. It will produce a movie like Bruno which may have offended some groups of poeple but whilst doing so, they ensure they stay just within what is acceptable by general public. Likewise, when it comes to Muslims it assesses what will sell based on what is acceptable. In the Muslim world certain things to do with thier faith are not acceptable, its not just a case of poeple being offended and rioting but potential ban on the movie by the muslim governments.

    We can’t imagine a movie showing destruction of kaba or acting the role of the Prophet being produced let alone shown anywhere in the Muslim world. Can we say the same about the Christian world? Britian and America as Christian countries have never been reluctant to or fear any backlash in what maybe called abuse of sacred religious aspects in the name of art, film, drama? The people have become desensatised and just don’t care anymore even if it is Jesus being shown as a fornicator. Surely you can’t blame the Muslims for this?

  • What caught my eye about Mr. Emmerich is that he openly admitted that he was afraid for his life and it wasn’t worth it to depict an Islamic holy site being destroyed.

    But still wimpy.

  • Salman,

    I’d have to disagree with you there.

    Christians don’t go out and destroy property and issue death threats AND carry them out.

    And no Christian government, if there existed one in the 20th or 21st century has banned a film that offended Christians.

  • Salman,

    On your point of Hollywood portraying Islam in a negative light, it has not been explicitly done. But they have done so implicitly such in the movie True Lies and in the tv miniseries 24.

    Though they were depictions of individual Muslims in general and not Islamic holy sites or Muhammad in particular.

  • Hollywood doesn’t miss an opportunity or is hardly reluctant in its oft ill portrayal of Muslims as terrorists hell bent on destroying the world more than it does to any other organised religion.

    As John McEnroe would say, you cannot be serious. No better example of the ridiculous pc atmosphere is the move version of Sum of All Fears, where the evil villains went from Muslims in the book to white skinheads in the film. The bad guys on 24 are almost always some shadowy, white-led corporation. Whenever there are Islamic bad guys, it’s usually revealed that some pucker-faced white dude is the guy pulling the strings.

  • The very real silver lining: it’s a backhanded but genuine compliment to the overwhelmingly civilized behavior of Catholics.

  • Interesting article. As for Emmerich, it took guts to say that, assuming he meant it as an accusation. If he meant it as a warning to fellow Westerners not to rock the boat, it’s pathetic.

  • I look at this as – we must be doing something right! I can care less that hollywood has a bias – it has and always will. The movies that do talk truth will be the ones I go to see. I saw th previews to this and thought 2012 and thought here we go again. I am sure the twist at the end will be that we as humans didn’t enough to stop global warming and that we should have slowed our population down enough to reduce our carbon signature. If only we ate less meat this wouldn’t have happened. Sheesh…

  • I think you are reading too much into the supposed ‘anti-Christian’ content of this movie. While scared sites do meet destruction, the movie is, after all, about the End of the World. We would expect sites like these to be destroyed, as part of the movie’s theme, and also for general ‘shock value’.

    I do agree that his declaration about Muslim holy sites is cowardly, but he, at least, admits it.

  • NauticaMongoose,

    Its under the surface.

    Their bias comes out that they can do this to Christian holy sites with impunity unlike Muslim holy sites.

  • The fact that taco stands being destroyed was not actually depicted in the movie is sheer proof that the movie maker harbors great respect, if not, great fear of Tito Taco Man, who might have issued a fatwa against him!

    Fear the Taco Man; fear Tito!

  • e.,

    I used to own and operate a taco stand.

    You know my feelings very well!

  • I really don’t understand how the dome of St. Peter’s is able to fall to its side and roll all the way out into the square to crush the masses of people gathered there… I mean, it’s a *long* way from the dome to the front of the church!

  • Maybe there’s some kind of time/space distortion in Hollywood that fundamentally alters the laws of physics there?

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  • “Calling director Emmerich a “coward,” a blogger for The American Catholic writes, “This is just another example of Hollywood picking on us Christians. ‘Us’ Christians call this behavior bigotry in the form of Christophobia. More commonly known as anti-Christian or more specifically anti-Catholicism in the case of this film.” The blogger goes on to note that Emmerich was concerned about having a fatwa (essentially a Muslim death threat) on his head.”


    Tito Taco just expanded his taco stand.


  • @ Tito :

    We, Muslim also accept that Jesus( Peace Be Upon Him ) was a Prophet of God and I would like to inform you that Islam equally forbids depiction of Jesus or David or Moses or any other Prophet in any form. I would also like to inform you that movies that are offending to Christians like The Da Vinci Code were not allowed to be screened in Pakistan and Iran which are Muslim States ….
    About the fact that no Christian state has banned such a movie is not our problem …. its up to the Christians to raise their voice and ask their Governments to Ban such films. If your leaders are don’t care about it, what can ‘we’ the Muslims do ??
    Just look around and see what resources the Christians have … you are a hundred times ahead then Muslims in many aspects consider Education, Electronic Media, Technology, Research and Development, etc etc …. yet with all those advantages if you cant make your point clear … its a pity ….

  • Osama,

    I understand what you are saying. Christians appreciate the fact that Pakistan and Iran banned the film as well as other Maghreb and south Asian.

    We do protest in a civilized manner via all of our resources.

    We live in a civilized society that allows for dissent in a peaceful manner. At most we will organize marches and demonstrations but we will not resort to violence.

    After those steps are procured and Hollywood still insists, and does so, in distributing such blasphemous films then we have done what we could and it is in the hands our Father after that.

    So we execute our final step of prayer, prayer, and more prayer.

    This is the mystery of iniquity that will be revealed to us in the last days. But until that happens we completely place our trust in Him with abiding joy and love.

    Thank you for engaging in this dialogue and hope you return again in the future when our paths cross again.

    After all we are sons of Abraham via Noah descended from Adam and are brothers in God.


  • I do agree with most of the comments above.

    Hollywood is just a business. They will produce movies they think people want to see, hoping to make a profit.

    If we do not agree with what is shown ( and – or not shown) in a particular movie, we can decide not to support it. Money walks. No money, no movies.

    In the light of Emmerich’s decision to show the destruction of Holy Christian symbols in 2012, I have decided to not see this movie. I will also tell my family & friends about it so that they can decide for themselves if they will support that movie or not.

  • Hi Osama and Salman, your comments are welcomed, we need more such voices and louder to make a fruitfull and meaningfull dialaogues. After all, as Tito says, we are brothers in God.

  • As it appears some of our commenters are not accustomed to the American system I think it needs to be pointed out that although the U.S. has a majority Christian population and was founded on principles that stemmed from Christian thought, it is a secular, not a Christian state. There is no “official” faith singled out for special protection. While this may result in some extremely distasteful things being said, published, filmed, and televised, it’s necessary to recognize that the same freedom that allows Hollywood filmmakers to wallow in anti-Christian images allows Christians and everybody else to freely discuss and advocate for their beliefs. We are wary of bans even when the lack thereof allows offensive speech and images; when you start banning the communication of certain ideas it tends to become that much easier to ban all the others, your own included.

    But this isn’t about official bans or what Christians should do to get more respect from the film industry; it’s about a climate of fear that silences any discussion of Islam, reasoned or otherwise, that subjects it to the same scrutiny as any other belief system. It’s a fear that the laws that are supposed to preserve our freedom of speech are insufficient to protect us against the lawless.

    That is what is most troubling–that a filmmaker so accustomed to saying what he likes that he thinks nothing of showing images that disturb or offend the majority of his audience can be so completely cowed by a violent minority that he will not speak up even when he might have something important to say.

    Theo Van Gogh spoke up, and paid for it with his life. It appears few of his colleagues are willing to exercise that freedom if it puts their necks on the line. Give Emmerich credit for at least acknowledging that.

  • Interesting. He hates “organized religion” but for some reason makes sure that those who practice Islam survive the end of the world in his movie “2012”

    His irrational hatred of Christianity and Catholicism in particular, winds up with him making the largest pro-Islamic propaganda film in the history of mankind – despite him hating “organized religion” – the message of the movie is clear: If you wish to survive the end of the world, you got to join Islam.

    Very nice. Way to go.

    Irrational bigotry always leads to irrational consequences.

  • Osama —

    Jesus was/is not a PROPHET, he is God incarnate. I am sorry but your religion is a counterfeit that has some of the characteristics of the true faith — just twisted ever so slightly into something that is profoundly untrue. Please accept Christ for who he is and save yourself while you may still have time.

  • I saw this movie today, at hubby’s insistence. Don’t waste your time or money on it. Yeah, the special effects are great but the plot and acting are pretty lame, and laughably so at times, plus the movie goes on WAY too long.

    If this is “the largest pro-Islamic propaganda film in the history of mankind,” I hardly noticed, probably because I was too busy snickering at all the over-the-top escapes and disaster flick cliches 🙂

  • Also, it seems to me that the religion(s) to join if you want to survive the end of the world in this movie would be either Buddhism or (SPOILER ALERT) any religion practiced in Africa, which actually does have a lot of Catholics as well as Muslims and adherents of native faiths.

  • Ronald did it again. This movie, 2012, looks awesome. I don’t think I can wait until it comes out. The trailor is mind blowing. Finally a film to spark the imagination.

  • This is so pathetic. It seems to me you’re more upset that Islamic holy sites were not destroyed in the movie. The simple fact of the matter is that Hollywood is run by Jews. That’s not an uncharitable statement. I wonder why you chose not to insist that the Wailing Wall was not destroyed as well? The demonization and degradation of Christianity and Islam by Jewish fanatics is nothing new. Yet where are the Christians when it comes to making their voices heard?
    Tito also makes some atrocious fallacies in his condescending statements. Civilized? My friend, westerners have and still are amongst the most violent and genocidal people in human history. Babbling about fatwas while going around the world invading countries and slaughtering millions based on a pack of lies? Hypocrisy and bad comedy at its best.
    Pick up a history book sometime.

  • Unimpressed,

    Straw man arguments all around.

    So much straw I could start a bon fire.

    As far as your statements are concerned:

    1. I am pointing out that Hollywood remains largely anti-Christian, more specifically, anti-Catholic.

    In the context of the film and the statements made by the director it is clearly evident that his hatred for Catholicism.

    2. Genocides? You’re referring to “Westerners”, I am defending the Catholic faith.

    There is a stark difference. Remember the first genocide was done by the Turkish Muslims when they eliminated 1.5 million Armenian Christians in the late 19th and early 20th century.

    Are they “Western”?

  • “Babbling about fatwas while going around the world invading countries and slaughtering millions”

    Actually that is not a bad summary of the history of Islamic imperialism. Of course it ignores the positive aspects of Islamic culture as you ignore the positive aspects of the history of Jews and Christians.

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  • Hmmm … you mean the Ku Klux Klan does not terrorize in the name of Christ? Obviously Muslims are very serious about their faith. Perhaps Christians should be as devoted to theirs?

  • Bernice,

    Know your history or don’t say anything at all.

    The KKK equally hated Catholics as much as blacks.

    Catholic churches were bombed and Catholics were terrorized in general.

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  • you say “What? You thought it was a recent phenomenon? Muslims have been waging war against non-Muslims since Mohammad started their religion, but that’s for another day).” so you totally ignore that All non-muslims started wars against Muslims ,also at current time ,whose countries are invaded and destroyed ? Iraq,Afghanistan ,Egypt was occuppied by british christians ,Somalia by France ,Algeria was occupied for 300 year ,about 3 Million Muslims were killed there in genocide by Frensh Christians ,Italy is no Different it Invaded Lybia ,need more ?

  • Ahmed,

    The Middle East was Christian for 600 years before Muhammad arrived.

    Get your facts straight before spouting off nonsense.

  • Hi, Tito,

    To put the record straight, the part of Arabia where Muhammed(pbuh) was born, had just a sprinkling of Christians but a had a number of tribes who were Jews.
    And regarding persecution, The number of practising Coptic Christians in Middle East shows that they were allowed the freedom of choosing and practising their religion.

  • Ragsayed,

    The number of practicing Copts used to be over 90% of the population.

    Years of persecution have whittled their numbers down to 10%.

  • Hi Tito,

    U have got it wrong the practising copts were abt 15% only , the other were worshippers of different Gods like Laat, Uzza, Mannat etc. Wouldn’t it be fair to say that , each major religion had some or the other leader who perpetuated atrocities in name of religion. If u talk abt Turkey then u also have to remember that after 600 yrs of rule when the christians conquered Spain all the muslims were slain there too.

    I am not justifying any of the genocides but just want to make clear that any kind of killings in name of religion is done by the proponents not saanctioned by that religion. The same yardstick should be applied to all.

  • Some times I think Catholics, Christians, and my fellow Americans are jealous, in a silly sort a way. For the most part we have nothing serious to complain about, so they have to convince themselves they are under attack by Hollywood, of all things.

    I have to ask what was so civilized about US policy that has resulted in the deaths of Muslims, deaths that many Christians seem to feel not worth counting post WWII. By supporting the creation of the modern State of Israel in the manner it was. Propping up an Iranian monarch. Arming both Iran in Iraq in propagated by the US. Bad as it is radical Muslims kill because of they interpret their holy book, what drove US policy? Worshiping the God almighty dollar?

  • Ragsayed,

    The Muslims in Spain were expelled. Besides, it was Christian before it was Muslim.

    As for Egypt, the See of Alexandria is one of the oldest sees in the world. It was overwhelmingly Copt before the Muslims came in.


    Relativism is your god, not ours.

  • Hi Tito,
    The muslims in Spain were not expelled, they were put to death to the last muslim by The Crusaders in the period of 21 days.

    Regarding Spain being Christian b4 Muslims conquered it, yes it is a fact. But it is also true in the 600 yrs of Muslim rule there was never a mass execution or expulsion of the christians.

    Always get ur facts right b4 commenting.

  • Rizwan,

    The Crusaders were never in Spain.

    The Muslims persecuted both Christians and Jews.

  • The only religions which you can ridicule without fear of any reaction seems to be Christianity and eastern religions.

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  • Osama and salmon,

    Thank you for your dignified responses. I am a Christian, not a Muslim, but you are showing more grace and dignity than most of the “Christians” on this site. Please don’t listen to ignorant comments that plead for you to mend your views on Islam religion. We have all found God, and He is the same. Allah, Jesus, He is the same. We should honor our similarities and celebrate our differences. No human has the right to tell another how to think, act, or feel. Jesus knows this. Some of you should learn to follow His lead.

  • I’m not sure why Emmerich had to destroy any religious landmarks or symbols in the film. I sensed a degree of derision when the senior American official on the ark made a comment about the Italian prime minister coping with the imminent disaster with ‘prayer’, then showing thousands of people getting crushed under the rubble of St Peter’s. I would have liked to have seen some casinos, adult film studios and credit card bank corporate headquarters crumble instead. It felt like the film was presenting a message that prayer is meaningless. I respect people who don’t believe in a higher power but I certainly believe that it helped my infant son many years ago when he was fighting for his life and continues to help me today. Anyway, I hope Emmerich will steer away from this type of controversy in future film projects.

  • ” Osama Says:
    Thursday, November 12, 2009 A.D. at 1:19 am
    @ Tito :

    We, Muslim also accept that Jesus( Peace Be Upon Him ) was a Prophet of God and I would like to inform you that Islam equally forbids depiction of Jesus or David or Moses or any other Prophet in any form. I would also like to inform you that movies that are offending to Christians like The Da Vinci Code were not allowed to be screened in Pakistan and Iran which are Muslim States ….
    About the fact that no Christian state has banned such a movie is not our problem …. its up to the Christians to raise their voice and ask their Governments to Ban such films. If your leaders are don’t care about it, what can ‘we’ the Muslims do ??
    Just look around and see what resources the Christians have … you are a hundred times ahead then Muslims in many aspects consider Education, Electronic Media, Technology, Research and Development, etc etc …. yet with all those advantages if you cant make your point clear … its a pity …. ”

    Salaam Alekum Osama. In Islam Issa ( Jesus ) PBUH is a Prophet of Allah the merciful and the compassionate that is quite true, but very many Muslims when in communication with Western audiences seem to go out of their way to omit the very important fact that in Islam, Issa is not God’s son and to claim that he is God’s son would be a major heresy in Islam, in that the Noble Koran in Islam is regarded as the exact word of God and is the final authority in Islamic law and theology. And a claim that Issa is God’s son would run slam bang in to Surah 112

    Translations of the Qur’an, Surah 112:

    Total Verses: 4
    Revealed At: MAKKA
    YUSUFALI: Say: He is Allah, the One and Only;
    PICKTHAL: Say: He is Allah, the One!
    SHAKIR: Say: He, Allah, is One.
    YUSUFALI: Allah, the Eternal, Absolute;
    PICKTHAL: Allah, the eternally Besought of all!
    SHAKIR: Allah is He on Whom all depend.
    YUSUFALI: He begetteth not, nor is He begotten;
    PICKTHAL: He begetteth not nor was begotten.
    SHAKIR: He begets not, nor is He begotten.
    YUSUFALI: And there is none like unto Him.
    PICKTHAL: And there is none comparable unto Him.
    SHAKIR: And none is like Him.

    Why do Muslims act in this manner in relation to describing the position of the Prophet Issa in Islam and my view is that in many cases they assume often correctly that many Westerners will have little detailed knowledge of Christianity and know next to nothing about Islam and such Muslims conclude that they can trick Westerners in to believing that Jesus ( Issa ) holds the exact same position in Islam as he does in Christianity. Also, I would suggest to you that Pakistan and Iran are not Muslim states, they are merely countries where the majority of the population are of the Muslim religion, which is a very different thing, since a conceptual idea of Islam is to be aware of the imperfection of mankind and to show the mercy of God to the sinner and not to cast him or her adrift from the Islamic community, so for sure good and bad the majority of the population of Pakistan and Iran are Muslims. To say Pakistan and Iran are Muslim States is something seriously different. For example, the Prophet Mohammad peace be upon him, sent certain of his companions abroad to seek sanctuary and support from a Christian King in Africa thus establishing a principle that if people are legitimate and honorable they may seek the protection of just leaders. If the Prophet Mohammad should seek protection for his companions from a King who was foreign King in a foreign land, how much more so, for example should the Baha’i in Iran have a right to have the Government of Iran protect them in their own country. If a government will not protect its own people and even encourages their persecution, how could it claim to be Islamic ? As for banning films, such as the Da Vinci Code, where is the authority derived from the Koran to do this and furthermore if you wish to ban depictions of Prophets such as for example the Prophet Mohammad, why allow any films or photographs of real people or actors playing roles, since my understanding is if one wants to follow an interpretation of Islam that would ban a depiction of the Prophet Mohammad, it would also require that pictures of human-beings be banned.

  • the world wil never end that way because god said he would never flood the earth he said when the world end we will see him ..wwe cant listen to men or people that said this cause people are born everyday in we will never no when time is here,

  • Hi,
    I’ll present you with a simple math. If emmerich did put in his film collapses of islamic holy places, he will loose much. 90 % of the 1 billion muslims will not watch his film, coz they are devoted fanatic muslims who will not be happy with it..On the contrary, by putting in collapses of vatican churches, his loosing risk was only made by small percentage of devoted fanatic catholics all over the world { less than 5 % }, the rest are much more tolerant. As for the question why he didnt put in the destruction of jewish holy places, most of the hollywood producers are jewish, arent them? Its only business as usual pal………..

  • Hermione,

    That is simply rubbish.

    Equating Catholic “fanatics” on the level of Muslims is part of the anti-Catholic smear campaign.

  • Tito,
    you miss the point. the point is, its business, just a business as other fictious films. by mentioning catholics majority are much more tolerant, does it mean its an ‘anti’ campaign? Or maybe the sentence could be altered this way : on the contrary, by putting in collapses of vatican churches, he will not loose much, coz catholics majority are of much more tolerant.

New York Times Rejects Archbishop Dolans Article, Why?

Friday, October 30, AD 2009

Archbishop Timothy DolanThe New York Times rejected an op-ed article submitted by Archbishop Timothy Dolan of the Archdiocese of New York.  Why may I ask would the New York Times reject an article from His Excellency?  Probably because Archbishop Dolan called out the New York Times for their yellow journalism.

Of course those not familiar will Colonial American history will “poo poo” this particular article.  But as early as A.D. 1642 there were laws in the books that required test oaths administered to keep Catholics out of office, legislation that barred Catholics from entering certain professions (such as Law), and measures enacted to make Catholics incapable of inheriting or purchasing land.

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30 Responses to New York Times Rejects Archbishop Dolans Article, Why?

  • What would you expect? Evil knows who the real enemy is, and doesn’t waste effort on wannabes.

  • It would be pretty uncomfortable not to be hated by, um (coughs) “minions.”

    St. Max Kolbe, St. Frances de Sales and St. Paul the Apostle are the patrons of journalists. Integrity in the press would be pleasing, for a change.

  • Tito:

    There are far more recent examples of blatant anti-Catholicism in American history.

    For starters, you might want to look into what was then known as the Blaine Amendment.

    “The American River Ganges,” Harper’s Weekly,
    September 30, 1871, p.916. Wood engraving.

    By the middle of the nineteenth century, large numbers of Catholic children had withdrawn from the significantly Protestant American public schools to attend newly organized Roman Catholic schools. With a large and influential Irish Catholic constituency, the powerful New York City Democratic machine centered at Tammany Hall persuaded the Democratic state legislature to provide public support for the Irish schools. A firestorm of controversy ensued, especially in states like Ohio and Illinois,where the Catholic hierarchy had made similar requests. The controversy re-ignited smouldering Republican nativism, a policy of protecting the interests of indigenous residents against immigrants; and it suddenly became attractive as a vote-getter since that Reconstruction issues appeared to have been resolved. Tammany politicians are shown dropping little children into the “American River Ganges,” infested with crocodilian bishops. The American flag flies upside down, the universal signal of distress, from the ruins of a public school. Linking Roman Catholicism to the Ganges, the sacred river of Hinduism, suggested its exotic un-Americanism and also linked it with what Americans then considered a primitive and fanatical religion.

  • One significant part missing from the Archbishop’s article is that anti-Catholicism has waned a good deal since the colonial and founding days of this country. While it’s clearly still a very real and significatn part of the national mindset as he shows, had he mentioned this trend and shown an example – i.e., the positive reception of the past two popes when visiting this country – it may have been better received by the NY Times?

  • [A]nti-Catholicism has waned a good deal since the colonial and founding days of this country.

    I don’t believe this to be true; instead, I believe anti-Catholicism is not as blatant as it was in earlier days, which is why this would seem to be the case.

    After all, it is not without compellingly good reason why it has been declared (quite rightly) that “anti-Catholicism is the last acceptable prejudice”.

  • The Archbishop should remove the log from his own eye as well. He has his own biases which he shares with all his brother bishops and he, as they do, refuses to listen as well to the victims of his particular bigotry.

    What goes around comes around Timothy. Please look at yourself as well.

  • While [Anit-Catholicism] has been declared (quite rightly) that “anti-Catholicism is the last acceptable prejudice”.”, that doesn’t speak clearly to the extent of that bias, it only speaks that the bias still concretely exists. The fact that Evangelicals (see “Has the Reformation Ended?” by Noll and Nystrom) have been slowly moving toward closer relations and mutual understanding with Catholics, along with the general Protestant population as well, it’s quite clear that there is an improvement to the bias that has existed from the beginning.

    I agree that the bias is still strong, especially in the popular media, though as you mention less blatant. But even then there has been a slow but discernible improvement. See the NY Times coverage of Vatican II – the paper itself showed surprisingly positive comments on the council, granted, it tended to want to see the Catholic Church as a “changed church”, and not just development. But nonetheless, a respect was shown that would not have been present back in the 19th century.

  • Karl Says: “Archbishop should remove the log from his own eye as well”

    Karl, Archbishop does acknowledge the Catholics issues, maybe not as much as you like? But he does. Rehashing further those Catholic issues would require The NY Times to do the same every time it writes about a topic, certainly not something that will ever happen. But the Archbishop certainly deserves his say in the most influential newspaper in this country on a topic of significant importance. If you use your line of reasoning, then the NY Times would also have to do the same, and we’d have to do without that newspaper for a long time until that log was removed!

  • Publius:

    While I might grant that there has been apparently good sentiments towards establishing good relations with Catholics by some members of certain Protestant denominations (whether wholly or in part); surely, good vibes from merely a selection of Protestant individuals cannot translate as meaning the “general Protestant population”; furthermore, the general populace of America itself does not consist merely in such a population as this but extends to those who are merely secularist or are themselves beholden to other categories not even Protestant, which such anti-Catholicism also eminate.

    Rest assured, anti-Catholicism is alive and well; it’s just not as conspicuous as it used to be.

  • e.:

    I should have said that there are significant, meaningful efforts underway for decades – in particular, since Vatican II – that have made an impact in Protestantism. You’re right; it’s an overstatement to say these changes have affected the general Protestant populations. Having clarified that, it is clear that numerous Protestants and Protestant churches (not to mention a few agnostics/atheists) have gained a growing respect for Catholicism. I speak of the Protestant segment of the population because it is the largest segment and one that I know where meaningful change is taking place. If it can be shown one segment is affected, then it shows there is change, no matter how small.
    One area of change has occurred when numerous leaders on both sides of the Protestant / Catholic fences are finding important ways of working together, leaders – such as those involved in Evangelical and Catholics Together. They are leaders for a reason, they bring followers. And while this is always a bit nebulous in the Protestant world, there are a number of examples that can show this is taking root. Also, Protestants and Catholics have stood together in front of numerous abortion clinics, an action that is bound to produce more than ‘good vibes’. It builds shared values, which is a solid base to build on. This is a very slow process, but a process that is in the works. I am involved in two ecumenical groups myself where a learning process is underway that is yielding mutual respect and understanding, which requires a yield to the traditional bigotry.
    And no need to continue repeating Anti-Catholicism is still alive and well, we agree on this. I just think it’s important and helpful to acknowledge that serious effort and action has been made in past decades, especially since and because of Vatican II, that indicates the roots and resulting fruit that has taken place. It doesn’t diminish the reality of the “last acceptable prejudice” in this country.

  • I know it is called anti-Catholicism, but I think it is different in kind now than it was in the past. While many so-called anti-Catholics may see our beliefs as incoherent and superstitious as to theological/sacramental matters (eg, transubstantiation), the current anti-Catholicism is focused more on our ethical/moral beliefs. Thus, it’s not limited to anti-Catholic, but anti-anyone who does not agree with their morality.

  • c matt is correct in my view, which explains why the animus is directed more from so-called cultural elites and liberals than conservative fundies. The latter disagree with us, and have very odd understandings of our beliefs, but with a few exceptions really don’t demonize us. Moreover, the latter group is comparatively powerless.

  • Publius:

    While I agree with you that such advances have indeed been made insofar as our relationship concerning certain Protestants go; however, I believe what’s being neglected here is that these seemingly minor events have not led to any significant eradication or even a diminishment of anti-Catholicism in general and, as I’ve attempted to point out in my latter remark (admittedly, rather poorly), the general population of the United States is not primarily comprised of just Protestants. There are several other folks who are just as, if not, far more fierce in their anti-Catholicism.

    c matt:

    I’m afraid I need to disagree with you there.

    The PZ Myers affair itself would seem precisely indicative of the kind of underlying prejudice (still alive as it is ubiquitous & rampant) certain categories of Americans (in this case, the scientific community as well as various secular groups) harbor specifically towards our kind.

    That is, I don’t believe it is really merely a matter of Christian morals, which any other Christian denomination apart from ours may likewise subscribe to; and, yet, I doubt that they would suffer incidents similar to the hideous kind Catholics are typically victim to, like the one here.

  • This is no surprise to me. More and more, the MSM is simply ignoring criticism or stories which do not promote their leftist POV. They didn’t vet Obama properly, they barely reported on Van Jones, they dropped the ball on ACORN – but we know what designer made the dress Michelle wore on date night. People complain about Fox, but the truth is that Fox is doing the job the rest of the MSM refuses to do.

    In the meantime, the NY Times circulation continues to tank and they recently had another big layoff. If it wasn’t for Mexican billionaire Carlos Sim, the Gray Lady would already be six feet under.

    The Church will be around long after the Times prints its last snide MoDo column.

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  • If you go to Fox News you will see the entire Archbishop’s comments on their web site. I sent a copy of your web site article to Fox when it came out and whether or not they had planned to reprint it I do not know, but it is on their web site.

  • I should add that it is under their Opinion page.

  • Doesn’t matter.

    Anyone wanting to do an honest search will find our website or another Catholic website/blog with the correct information.

    As long as it gets out. Eventually most of the more outlandish attacks on our faith should subside with time. If not, those, like the New York Times, will get less and less credibility with their attacks.

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  • I do not think the NY Times is at all anti Catholic. Three years ago the Times published a Phenomenal and Wonderful Article about the NY Catholic Foundling and the work of Saint Elizabeth Seton and her Sisters of Charity.

    I think that perhaps Archbishop Dolan may just be a tad thin skinned and doesn’t understand the language of locals and natives……. He just needs time and the neverending tolerance and patience of the people we are — New Yorkers. He’s a shepherd. Perhaps sheep graze on different grass in the midwest. He’ll come around and see we’re not so scary!!!!!!!!! Francis de Sales, Gabriel, John Chrysostom, etc. love us all equally and are with us all. Maybe he was just having a bit of a belly ache after eating that case of Tasykakes sent to him by Archbishop Rigali of Philly!!!!

  • Being anti-catholic is like charging someone with being anti-semitic. This type of vitriol is thrown for the purpose of intimidating and silencing the views of others. The Archbishop has a right, if not a responsibility, to preach to his flock whatever he feels is proper according to his faith. The rub comes when he speaks or acts beyond that in an attempt to influence, if not shape, public policy. As a voter, he is free to. But as a cleric, he is out of bounds.

  • “The rub comes when he speaks or acts beyond that in an attempt to influence, if not shape, public policy.”

    So when the bishops of America speak out against abortion, would such acts be considered “an attempt to influence, if not shape, public policy”?

  • Absolutely… the Archbishop could, just as any other citizen, speak as a civilian (preferably in street clothes) and make his position clear. Speaking as a cleric and a leader of an organization accepting tax benefits, he is out of place.

  • Would similar individuals within an organization such as the Evangelical Society count?

  • The first test is whether they are granted tax free status, if so, then they would need to speak as individual and not from the authority of some tax supported organization… From the internet, I understand the Evangelical Society to believe the following: “The Bible alone, and the Bible in its entirety, is the Word of God written and is therefore inerrant in the autographs. God is a Trinity, Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, each an uncreated person, one in essence, equal in power and glory.” These beliefs are clear but the relevance to the modern world is highly unclear.

  • zukunftsaugen,

    I disagree 100%.

    He is the shepherd of the Catholic Church in New York City and he has the right and the duty to lead them.

    Your ideas are bordering on totalitarianism.

    If that is what you think anyone in a position of authority should behave, then maybe you should investigate Communist China and see how well they are doing over there.

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Pray for Larry David, Creator of Seinfeld and Curb Your Enthusiasm

Wednesday, October 28, AD 2009

[Warning: Vile language in this posting.]

Larry David Jerry Seinfeld

Larry David is the creative producer of NBC’s Seinfeld and HBO’s Curb Your Enthusiam.  Over the weekend in an episode of Curb Your Enthusiasm he relieves himself on the picture of Jesus.  The details and context of the episode are not worth explaining due to the unfortunate attack on God and our Christian faith by this depraved human being.

Like so many in Hollywood, anti-Christian, more specifically, anti-Catholicism, is still prevalent among many movers and shakers.  Imagine if they would even consider insulting the founder of Islam, Mohammad, as such?  Not in a million years.

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90 Responses to Pray for Larry David, Creator of Seinfeld and Curb Your Enthusiasm

  • Tito:

    While I admire the spirit with which you intended the posting of this entry, doesn’t doing so simply allows for free publicity of the very depraved act you are (quite rightly, of course) protesting?

    In other words, these days, it is this kind of free publicity that such folks crave because the controversy it generates (particularly, amongst the religious) are exactly the kind that promote their projects (in this case, a television series) amongst the general populace, potentially leading to more expanded viewership.

    Myself being aware of such tactics personally, I hardly give them the satisfaction by engaging in such action, which would only serve to promote their utterly repulsive objectives.

  • I don’t understand. They should receive
    publicity – lots of negative publicity .
    They cannot be allowed to get away with this .

    Its not just the one episode, its a whole
    series of things, and the immorality and
    violence as a whole in Hollywood .
    Pray that God intervenes and that there will
    be changes .

  • I like how you say they wouldn’t do this to any other religion but no other religion is constantly claiming to find ‘weeping’ icons.


    I know you’re not going ot post this.

  • In your gloss, such an action (for instance, this display of outrage demonstrated by Tito’s post) would seem like negative publicity insofar as those particularly religious are concerned; however, that is not entirely the case especially with respect to the general masses, which such controversies as this specifically target.

    There is nothing more reliable than counting on this kind of outrage by such religious folks, which these controversies (in particular, this kind of media attention) generally depend.

    In fact, this is what the network strategists typically count on in order to boost viewership, especially in instances where it appears to be declining.

    Put it this way, if only members of the religious community would not respond in kind to such tactics in this manner and simply altogether ignore it, they would perhaps cease resorting to this kind of tactic.

    However, some are so predictable in the kind of reaction typically expected from them due to this already age-old maneuver that religious zealots (while seeming to do the right thing) ironically play right into the hands of these seemingly clever network strategists by inadvertently giving them exactly the kind of free publicity such media folks originally sought by employing such a tactic.

    In other words:

    “How do the Hollywood types boost up viewership for our shows?”

    Simple: Attack members of the religious communities by doing something controversial that will undoubtedly offend them.

    Their outrage will not only guarantee publicity for the shows themselves to a attract a much wider audience but also, what’s even more, it’ll be free!

    Ingenious when you think about it since what could be more reliable (and, consequently, more effective) than that outrage which such media tactics depends?

    The Da Vinci Code is a prime example.

    There were hundreds of folks I know (through various fraternal and academic associations) who, if not for such outrage, would have hardly been interested in seeing that very movie. However, because of the overwhelming reaction of several Christian communities, it generated such interest amongst them to actually see that movie, which is precisely the kind of publicity these media moguls were counting on.

  • Matt

    May I direct your attention to the following site:

  • e.,

    Like you continue to post comments and attract more attention?

  • Tito:

    My posting comments is not the same as your having created an entry that actually gives the kind of free publicity the show itself craves. In fact, it is moot since harm has already been done by your having already created the entry itself.

    Besides, my purpose is to expose this tactic so that a greater awareness of how these folks think and why they do what they do comes to light.

    Again, I don’t fault you for doing so; it really isn’t your fault since you were only doing what you considered right in light of the situation.

    How could you know that you were actually playing (even if unwittingly) right into the hands of some rather devious reprobates?

    If anything, you were only doing what every good Catholic these days don’t (unfortunately): take one’s Catholic Faith seriously.

    This is precisely why (as you rightly asserted within the context of your own entry) Hollywood would not dare insult Islam but have no qualms whatsoever about insulting Catholicism.

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  • Larry David has condemned himself by his actions. Pissing on a picture of Jesus is usually a last phase action of a demon who having seen the light, willfully challenges it instead of repenting. Now since Christianity is true, Larry has indeed messed with the Holy Spirit. Bleating to the press about how unfair it is that the sensibilities of other religions are spared is beside the point, as the Devil has no time for them.

  • Anyone who follows CURB knows that Larry David ridicules Judaism far more than any other religion. I urge anyone who takes offence (and most will probably have not even seen this particular episode) to sit down and watch the previous 6 series of the show and you might then understand the context. You will then be in a better position to pass judgement and decide whether to be offended.

    In fact, if all you ‘religious types’ stayed in your houses and watched more shows like this rather than going out to spread hate & prejudice then the world would be a better place.

    At last, more and more people are finally coming to see the truth that religion is a scam and deserves no respect.

    Good people will always do good things, evil people will always do evil things…it takes religion to make good people do evil things.

  • “Good people will always do good things, evil people will always do evil things…it takes religion to make good people do evil things.”

    This is quite possibly the stupidest, shallowest thing atheists say.

    How do you even know what “good” is? You have no moral compass, man to you is nothing but an animal. We eat animals. Animals eat each other. The law of the jungle does not know goodness or evil, but only survival and efficiency.

    I have watched Curb, I used to be a fan – used to be, before this disgusting outrage. I will never watch the show again.

    Do you even know the slightest thing about Jesus Christ? You expect us to know about some stupid show on HBO when your knowledge of the person being desecrated is probably based on 10 second sound bites?

  • Shmohawk,

    Just because he ridicules his own faith, doesn’t give him the right to ridicule someone else’s.

    You have a false sense of logic here without an ounce of reason.

  • Also…

    “it takes religion to make good people do evil things”

    How stupid do you have to be to even repeat something like this? Good people do good things. Someone who does evil over and over again is evil. A “religious” person who does evil things is evil, period.

  • @Tito, do you really want to live in a society where it’s only ok to poke fun at yourself? Allow me to Godwin this conversation: would you criticize Hitler? By your logic, you’d have to be a Nazi to do so.

  • Anonymous,

    Nazi’s were the governing party of Germany.

    You get to choose to remain a Catholic or not.

    You need to work out your philosophical arguments out before present them as a intellectual discourse.

    By the way, we rarely respond to people who sign in as anonymous, so I did you a favor.

  • Larry David is not a Christian. The people who watched that episode and were amused by it most likely are not Christians. As non-Christians, they are not obligated in any way to show reverence or even respect for your god because they do not believe in or worship your god. See how that works? The Constitution gives you the right to worship as you please, but that’s all. It does not give you the right to insist that others — even people of different religions or no religion — show you some extra measure of respect because of your beliefs.

    What you self-righteously and erroneously identify as “anti-Christian” or “anti-Catholic” is nothing more than a reflection of your own arrogance. Just because someone does not share your belief and chooses to find humor in your religion does not mean that person is “anti” anything — it just means that person does not believe as you do. It’s a big, cold world, and in it, people have many different beliefs and world views. That they do not agree with yours does not make them any less valid, nor does it mean they are actively opposed to your beliefs or that they are in some way persecuting you.

    I know it’s difficult for people who base their lives on unprovable beliefs that contradict reality to do this, but you Christians really need to grow up and understand that others are free to disagree with you, believe different things, and to say whatever they please about your beliefs, and that when they do that it does not mean that they are somehow morally inferior to you. It’s a free country, and in a free country people get offended. The best defense for this is to develop a thick skin. The United States does not exist to serve Christianity; it is an entirely secular nation in which no religion is officially recognized and all religions — or lack of religion — are allowed. What Christians so often identify as persecution is nothing more than the natural reaction of others to their arrogance and pious sense of entitlement and to their constant efforts to impose their beliefs on EVERYONE and to turn America into something it is not and never has been. Personal beliefs are just that — PERSONAL. They should be kept that way.

    If you find Larry David’s humor offensive, then don’t watch Larry David’s show. Whether or not other people watch and enjoy his show is none of your damned business.

  • Ray Garton,

    It’s amazing you took time out to tell us that it’s a free country and that our beliefs are unprovable.

    If so, why bother?

    In Jesus, Mary, & Joseph,


  • You must not have read my entire post. I assume you already know it’s a free country and your beliefs are unprovable. My point was that you Christians really need to control yourselves. The Dark Ages are over. You’re not in charge anymore — and we all know what happened when you were.

  • anon@ 11.37 In your world, when you criticise someone, say your kid, do you do so by urinating on a photograph of his? Is that how it is done? Slag off all you want about Christianity but don’t pretend that scum Larry was merely poking fun.

  • Ray Garton,

    Would it be ok to go on national television and insult you, your mother, and anyone else close to you?

    You fail to understand that there is a certain amount of responsibility involved with free speech.

    Do you think someone can get away with issuing a threat to our President and not have repurcussions?

    You really need to think this through before you make a fool of yourself.

    As far as the “Dark Ages”, if it wasn’t for the Catholic Church during the “Dark Ages” we wouldn’t have a concept called a “University”, science, astronomy, books, and beer just to name a few. Plus the fact we stemmed the tide of Islam.

    So think next time you spout falsehoods.

    If all you get is your information from tv, then you really don’t know much at all.

    So be thankful you aren’t be scourged in the city center while your mother is forced to wear a burqa and everyone around you are driving around on donkey’s as a means of transportation.

  • Larry David did not urinate on a picture of Jesus. Backsplash from the toilet spattered the picture. I think most of you know this, but you seem to lack confidence in your stand and feel you must mischaracterize the thing you’re protesting, virtually lying about it. If you have to lie to make your point, there’s something wrong with your point.

    Tito wrote: “Would it be ok to go on national television and insult you, your mother, and anyone else close to you?”

    Yes, it would be okay. I wouldn’t like it, of course, and I no doubt would respond. But life is full of things I don’t like. It’s full of things ALL of us don’t like. We need to be mature and adult enough to recognize that and live with it. I refer you to my earlier remark about thick skin.

    Tito wrote: “You fail to understand that there is a certain amount of responsibility involved with free speech.”

    I agree. However, those responsibilities do not include avoiding offending Christians or any other religion. No law exists in America prohibiting this.

    Tito wrote: “Do you think someone can get away with issuing a threat to our President and not have repurcussions?”

    It is against the law to threaten the president. It is not against the law to joke about Jesus or god or the Easter Bunny or Batman, or any other mythical figures. If you can’t see the difference, then the problem lies not in Larry David’s comedy but in your delusional view of the world.

    Tito wrote: “You really need to think this through before you make a fool of yourself.”

    I’m not the one who compared joking about Jesus to committing a federal offense. I honestly think you’re confused about who’s the fool.

    Tito wrote: “As far as the “Dark Ages”, if it wasn’t for the Catholic Church during the “Dark Ages” we wouldn’t have a concept called a “University”, science, astronomy, books, and beer just to name a few.”

    I’m sure the countless numbers of people your church tortured and slaughtered because they didn’t like them were very grateful for all those things. I would also like to point out that Hitler and Stalin and other bloodthirsty dictators like them made the trains run on time. That neither changes nor excuses the many people they killed.

    Tito wrote: “Plus the fact we stemmed the tide of Islam.”

    Defeating your competition in the dubious religion business is hardly a public service.

    Tito wrote: “So think next time you spout falsehoods.”

    You haven’t pointed out a single falsehood I’ve written here. Perhaps you need to think this through a little more, Titus.

    Tito wrote: “If all you get is your information from tv, then you really don’t know much at all.”

    My information comes from recorded history. Where on earth do you get YOUR information?

    Tito wrote: “So be thankful you aren’t be scourged in the city center while your mother is forced to wear a burqa and everyone around you are driving around on donkey’s as a means of transportation.”

    So the best way you know to defend your religion is to slam another. There’s no difference between the two as far as I can see. The Muslim faith is doing nothing different now than the Catholic faith did in the past. And I’m sure the Catholic faith would still be doing it if it were still in charge — something I’m sure it’s working on remedying as soon as possible.

  • Ray Garton,

    If you read my post I specifically avoided going into detail about what particularly happened. How it happened is irrelevant, but the fact that it did happen is.

    I agree there is free speech, I’m all for it, but again, did I say lets enact a law? No. I said lets pray for Mr. Larry David.

    To reiterate again and again, I am not asking for a federal law. I am enacting MY free speech to ask Mr. Larry David to desist from insulting God as he did.

    So as soon as you get that notion out of your head since you’ve been brainwashed that all us Krischians want is a theocracy (I’m reading between your constant accusations that we want a federal law for a federal offense.)

    I’ve pointed out all of the falsehoods you have spoken. You can be obtuse as much as you want, even a layperson could understand that your argument is about creating a federal law in which I never mentioned it.

    Besides, I was talking more about the Dark Ages.

    Recorded history? Like National Geographic?

    Again, open a book and read up on the alleged “Dark Ages”. You have failed to point out anything I said is untrue.

    As far as Islam, I was making a point about the “Dark Ages”.

    But if you insist on diverting attention from the argument, then do so at your own risk.

    I have a right to object to Mr. Larry David’s insults.

    You somehow believe I want to enact a federal law against this which I never mentioned. I asked that we pray for him and then you go into ad hominem’s about the Catholic faith. Which I retorted and you failed to answer.

    Come on Ray, it aint that hard is it?

    Or are you not used to debating with someone who has cold hard facts? Too much unchallenged thinking in college caught your tongue? (or your analytical abilities for that matter)

  • Mr. Ray Garton,

    I’m done with my early morning prayers and so I have to head back to sleep.

    I actually enjoyed engaging in debate with you and I hope you do understand where I (and many more Catholics are) am coming from.

    We can resume later today if you wish.

    Know that I love you as a brother in Christ.

    In Jesus, Mary, & Joseph,


  • I love the “enlightened” secularist responses.

    “He wasn’t REALLY disrespecting your religion, so lighten up! Ok, maybe he was, but he did the same to another religion before that, so that makes it ok. And, by the way, your religion is bulls#$&, your so-called “god” is a fake, and you caused more evil in the world than anything else, ever and you dark age bigots deserve what you get!”

    But THEY’RE the “brights”. Got it. I can almost see the maniacal frothing as they type. Or copy and paste. Whatever.

  • “Just because someone does not share your belief and chooses to find humor in your religion does not mean that person is “anti” anything — it just means that person does not believe as you do.”

    Ray, are you serious. When Catholics stand up for their beliefs about the sanctity of life and traditional marriage (usually very respectfully btw), they are labeled ANTI-choice, ANTI-gay, homophobic misogynists. Most people want it labeled “hate speech” to even SUGGEST that the traditional definition of marriage should remain. Yet somehow it’s not ANTI-Christian to mock and desecrate an image of the Christian Lord? It is a difference of beliefs, but it’s expressed in a way that is certainly anti-Christian.

    No one is suggesting it be against the law to do this or that Larry David should be put in jail. But free speech is a two way street. People don’t have the right to suppress speech because it’s offensive, but the speaker doesn’t have the right to stop those who are offended from speaking out in opposition.

  • Never seen this show–no cable. Sounds like a pretty contrived device; good satire needs a touch of plausibility to it. Who hangs a big picture of Jesus in their bathroom? Who backsplashes to the extent that would be required for this plot? Who over the age of six can’t practice proper toilet hygiene? What moderately sane Catholic would assume random droplets on a picture to be of miraculous origin absent other factors? So was the point of the exercise to “satirize” a common human foible, or to work out a scenario that would allow the players to include an act that ranges, depending on the viewer’s level of piety, from tasteless to really, really offensive?

    “Satires” of this type are objectionable because they don’t really satirize (i.e. ridicule the vices and follies of human nature.) They manufacture a situation that allows them to get away with contempt toward something–reverence or spirituality–normally recognized as good. Most of us outgrow this level of humor by our mid-teens, if not earlier.

  • “It takes religion to make good people do evil things.”

    Comments like this give good reason to doubt the speaker has read so much as a single book detailing one of the many atrocities of the 20th Century.

  • This is Zionist humor. Now we (people of the earth) are not to make pictures graven images of God, heaven or hell. Yet it is the very idea and action that he was doing says where Larry is coming from. I bet if someone wiped their ass with an israeli flag, that person whould be deemed “anti-semite” (air quote), which is really utter disgust for Zionist and their agenda.

  • “Comments like this give good reason to doubt the speaker has read so much as a single book detailing one of the many atrocities of the 20th Century.”

    I you want to bring up Hitler then you are right, you only need to read so much as a single book.

    To quote Mein Kampf…

    “I believe today that my conduct is in accordance with the will of the Almighty Creator.” (p.46)

    “This human world of ours would be inconceivable without the practical existence of a religious belief.” (p.152)

    “What we have to fight for…is the freedom and independence of the fatherland, so that our people may be enabled to fulfill the mission assigned to it by the Creator.” (p.125)

    + many others.

    Religion has formed the dividing lines of almost EVERY conflict or atrocity in human history…

    Israel / Palestine
    The War on Terror – Iraq, Afghanistan, 9/11
    Northern Ireland
    The Crusades
    The Spanish conquests of the Americas
    The Thirty Years War
    …and the list goes on

    And what motivates ‘good’ people to commit such acts…RELIGION.

    But I digress, Larry David didn’t deliberately pee on Jesus!

  • Considering the futility of trying to have a rational conversation with those who worship invisible deities, commenting on this blog about the “disrespect” of nonbelievers is like tilting at windmills. I readily admit that no words of mine can compete with the allure of eternal life. Any words of mine that might be volatile would at least give you the warm feeling of assurance that I would spend eternity in Hades ( it is so human to feel that being rewarded with the miracle of escaping death is not enough; that you also need to have the added comfort of eternal torture of those who disagree with you!)

    Nevertheless, I think it is important from my perspective to get god-a-holics to understand that they do not have legal standing to censure the rest of us who cheer at open disrespect of institutionalized insanity. Yah and verily, I say unto you… that THIS is human progress.

  • Shmohawk:

    Your litany demonstrates nothing more than your remarkable stupidity and ever deplorable sense of logic.

    Do you know what’s even more annoying than religious people?

    Stupid people like you who are so incapable of genuine dialogue that formulating even the semblance of a simple argument appears beyond the very measure of your capability.

    Ray Garton:

    Your comments are so amusing that it almost likens to parody.

    Your endless rant would make it seem that the United States was specifically founded for you and your fellow athiests.

    Yet, given the religious leanings of the Founding Fathers themselves and the rather bothersome language they typically employed concerning that “One Nation Under God”; these did not blindly subscribe to some blatantly erroneous notion of “freedom from religion”, as you would make it appear, but rather “freedom of religion”, wherein religion of the individual is to be respected — not denigrated — to such extent that certain measures were taken concerning particular circumstances wherein individuals so discriminated are afforded proper protection by even the law itself.

    So, next time you would like to deliver another one of your “the United States is the Promised Land of Atheists”, do give some serious attention and due examination of the language of the Founding Fathers as set out in the consequential documents from which the lay of this land was established.

    Your arrogance is not only appalling; it is repulsively revisionist.

    Of course, perhaps that “dubious religion business” of the Founding Fathers themselves from which this country was originally based may very well be the cause for why you would rather invent such delusional fiction from which to base your “U.nited S.tates of A.thiests.”!

    Yet, it can surely be dismissed as nothing more than simply “arrogance”, a “pious sense of entitlement” and the need to impose your athiest beliefs upon the masses; nothing more.

  • Schmohawk,

    There are these two atheists named Stalin and Mao who between the two of them killed more of their own people than just about all other previous wars and massacres combined. All in persuit of an ideology which, while having a certain aura of religiosity in the way that people devoted themselves to it, most explicitly rejected the existence of God or the eternal and instead pursued a transformative ideal within a strictly materialistic world view.

    I suppose you could theorize that everyone involved in the mass slaughters of their and a variety of lesser communist regimes were all the result of “bad people doing bad things” rather than “good people doing bad things” but that’s a rather silly semantic game as there’s no discernable difference between “good people” and “bad people” other than there actions. Indeed, I would argue that there is no such thing as “good people” or “bad people”. There are simply people. Some do mostly bad things, some do mostly good things, most do a pretty even number of both.


    You’re certain welcome to think that way, but theorizing that one of the major motives for theists is joy at the idea that some other people might be damned doesn’t correllate very well with most real world interractions with theists.

    As for whether “institutionalized insanity” should be mocked (leaving aside the question of whether that is what religion is) — I suppose it depends how much value one puts on the thoughts and experiences of other people. I consider ancient paganism to be utterly false, and indeed consider Islam, Buddhism and Hinduism to be false as well — but I would consider it the height of rudeness to go around actively mocking their rites and sacred symbols — not because I think they’re true, but because I don’t consider it particularly admirable to actively insult and trample on the beliefs which millions of people gain meaning and hope from.

    I’m perfectly happy to explain to my Buddhist and Hindu friends why I consider Catholicism to be true, or why I don’t find Hindu or Buddhist worldviews persuasive, but I certainly would actively abuse their sacred places or symbols — if only out of respect for them as people, and a desire not to cause human suffering for my own amusement.

  • I love it when dime store atheists attempt to claim Hitler was a theist, thus proving that it is not only in regard to God that they are completely clueless. From the Tabletalk of Hitler:

    ‘The war will be over one day. I shall then consider that my life’s final task will be to solve the religious problem. Only then Will the life of the German native be guaranteed once and for all.”

    “The evil that’s gnawing our vitals is our priests, of both creeds. I can’t at present give them the answer they’ve been asking for, but it will cost them nothing to wait. It’s all written down in my big book. The time will come when I’ll settle my account with them, and I’ll go straight to the point.”

    “I don’t know which should be considered the more dangerous: the minister of religion who play-acts at patriotism, or the man who openly opposes the State. The fact remains that it’s their maneuvers that have led me to my decision. They’ve only got to keep at it, they’ll hear from me, all right. I shan’t let myself be hampered by juridical scruples. Only necessity has legal force. In less than ten years from now, things will have quite another look, I can promise them.”

    “We shan’t be able to go on evading the religious problem much longer. If anyone thinks it’s really essential to build the life of human society on a foundation of lies, well, in my estimation, such a society is not worth preserving. If’ on the other hand, one believes that truth is the indispensable foundation, then conscience bids one intervene in the name of truth, and exterminate the lie.”

    “Once the war is over we will put a swift end to the Concordat. It will give me the greatest personal pleasure to point out to the Church all those occasions on which it has broken the terms of it. One need only recall the close cooperation between the Church and the murderers of Heydrich. Catholic priests not only allowed them to hide in a church on the outskirts of Prague, but even allowed them to entrench themselves in the sanctuary of the altar.”

    “The fact that I remain silent in public over Church affairs is not in the least misunderstood by the sly foxes of the Catholic Church, and I am quite sure that a man like the Bishop von Galen knows full well that after the war I shall extract retribution to the last farthing. And, if he does not succeed in getting himself transferred in the meanwhile to the Collegium Germanium in Rome, he may rest assured that in the balancing of our accounts, no “T” will remain uncrossed, no “I” undotted!”

    “Religion has formed the dividing lines of almost EVERY conflict or atrocity in human history…”

    You really did sleep through all your history classes didn’t you? Here is a sample of conflicts that had nothing to do with religion, unless one assumes that atheism is a religion:

    World War I

    World War II

    Korean War


    The American Civil War

    The War of 1812

    The Napoleonic cycle of wars

    The American Revolution

    The list could go on to encompass most of the wars fallen man has engaged in. If you are going to troll a Catholic website you’ll have to do much better than this.

  • Karen Leonard:

    “Considering the futility of trying to have a rational conversation with those who worship invisible deities…”

    Well, I don’t know — the Founding Fathers themselves ‘worship[ped] invisible dieties’ and, yet, rational conversation, let alone, the founding of this very nation, wasn’t beyond the realm of reason.

    Of course, the fact that the whole of Western Civilization itself being borne from the likes of a once united Christendom should also give one pause.

    Indeed, most of the scientists that gave birth to the scientific human progress were, in fact, largely Christian.

    Yet, that would require an intimate knowledge of history itself as well as reason; both of which, unfortunately, you do not possess in any discernible measure.

    But, please, don’t let the facts hinder you from formulating such creative nonsense.

    “god-a-holics” is surely the work of a creative genius!

  • It would be easy to show respect for the beliefs of Christians if they adhered to those beliefs themselves. Reading over the comments from Christians here on this forum, I can only imagine how proud you must all make Jesus.

  • “…the rest of us who cheer at open disrespect…”

    Very telling. And this is supposed to convince me that atheism and not religion is the font of compassion why, exactly?

  • “Reading over the comments from Christians here on this forum, I can only imagine how proud you must all make Jesus.”

    Have you ever read the Bible? Jesus did not suffer proud fools gladly.

    “Then Jesus said to the crowds and to his disciples: 2″The teachers of the law and the Pharisees sit in Moses’ seat. 3So you must obey them and do everything they tell you. But do not do what they do, for they do not practice what they preach. 4They tie up heavy loads and put them on men’s shoulders, but they themselves are not willing to lift a finger to move them.
    5″Everything they do is done for men to see: They make their phylacteries[a] wide and the tassels on their garments long; 6they love the place of honor at banquets and the most important seats in the synagogues; 7they love to be greeted in the marketplaces and to have men call them ‘Rabbi.’

    8″But you are not to be called ‘Rabbi,’ for you have only one Master and you are all brothers. 9And do not call anyone on earth ‘father,’ for you have one Father, and he is in heaven. 10Nor are you to be called ‘teacher,’ for you have one Teacher, the Christ.[b] 11The greatest among you will be your servant. 12For whoever exalts himself will be humbled, and whoever humbles himself will be exalted.

    13″Woe to you, teachers of the law and Pharisees, you hypocrites! You shut the kingdom of heaven in men’s faces. You yourselves do not enter, nor will you let those enter who are trying to.[c]

    15″Woe to you, teachers of the law and Pharisees, you hypocrites! You travel over land and sea to win a single convert, and when he becomes one, you make him twice as much a son of hell as you are.

    16″Woe to you, blind guides! You say, ‘If anyone swears by the temple, it means nothing; but if anyone swears by the gold of the temple, he is bound by his oath.’ 17You blind fools! Which is greater: the gold, or the temple that makes the gold sacred? 18You also say, ‘If anyone swears by the altar, it means nothing; but if anyone swears by the gift on it, he is bound by his oath.’ 19You blind men! Which is greater: the gift, or the altar that makes the gift sacred? 20Therefore, he who swears by the altar swears by it and by everything on it. 21And he who swears by the temple swears by it and by the one who dwells in it. 22And he who swears by heaven swears by God’s throne and by the one who sits on it.

    23″Woe to you, teachers of the law and Pharisees, you hypocrites! You give a tenth of your spices—mint, dill and cummin. But you have neglected the more important matters of the law—justice, mercy and faithfulness. You should have practiced the latter, without neglecting the former. 24You blind guides! You strain out a gnat but swallow a camel.

    25″Woe to you, teachers of the law and Pharisees, you hypocrites! You clean the outside of the cup and dish, but inside they are full of greed and self-indulgence. 26Blind Pharisee! First clean the inside of the cup and dish, and then the outside also will be clean.

    27″Woe to you, teachers of the law and Pharisees, you hypocrites! You are like whitewashed tombs, which look beautiful on the outside but on the inside are full of dead men’s bones and everything unclean. 28In the same way, on the outside you appear to people as righteous but on the inside you are full of hypocrisy and wickedness.

    29″Woe to you, teachers of the law and Pharisees, you hypocrites! You build tombs for the prophets and decorate the graves of the righteous. 30And you say, ‘If we had lived in the days of our forefathers, we would not have taken part with them in shedding the blood of the prophets.’ 31So you testify against yourselves that you are the descendants of those who murdered the prophets. 32Fill up, then, the measure of the sin of your forefathers!

    33″You snakes! You brood of vipers! How will you escape being condemned to hell? 34Therefore I am sending you prophets and wise men and teachers. Some of them you will kill and crucify; others you will flog in your synagogues and pursue from town to town. 35And so upon you will come all the righteous blood that has been shed on earth, from the blood of righteous Abel to the blood of Zechariah son of Berekiah, whom you murdered between the temple and the altar. 36I tell you the truth, all this will come upon this generation.

    37″O Jerusalem, Jerusalem, you who kill the prophets and stone those sent to you, how often I have longed to gather your children together, as a hen gathers her chicks under her wings, but you were not willing. 38Look, your house is left to you desolate. 39For I tell you, you will not see me again until you say, ‘Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord.'”

  • Ray Garton:

    Originally, you engaged in a long tirade concerning how awfully delusional Christians are because of their very beliefs.

    Now, your most recent comment happens to fall back on the very contents of — wait for it — their very beliefs; the very same you expressed outright animosity towards?

    In other words, insulting such beliefs are fun and even necessary; yet, when it comes down right to it, when the chips do happen to fall and you have nothing more to depend upon (save your own stupidity), you have no problems whatever with attempting to find safe harbor under the merits of such beliefs when it ultimately suits you.


    You prove both the sheer hypocrisy and immense futility of the atheist project all in one breath!

  • Yes, I’ve read the bible and know it quite well. I’ve also read the Harry Potter books, but that doesn’t mean I believe in wizards.

  • No, e., my reference to your beliefs was an attempt to hold you to them. I might sing “Santa Claus is Coming to Town” at Christmas time, but that doesn’t mean I believe in Santa Claus. According to your magic book, Jesus Christ taught humility, but I see none of that in Christians today. He taught his followers to love one another, and even their enemies, but I CERTAINLY see none of THAT in Christians today. He told his followers not to pray publicly, to go to their closets to pray so they don’t make arrogant spectacles of themselves, and yet Christians in America demand that their particular brand of prayer be engaged in at government functions and are angry that prayer is not allowed in public schools. *I* don’t believe in Jesus Christ — outside of the bible, there is no record that he ever existed, and the bible certainly isn’t a historical record, it’s a book of myths, so I see no reason to believe in Jesus Christ. Christians, however, DO believe in him and claim to be followers of his teachings — and yet their behavior constantly proves this not to be the case. So those of us outside of Christianity can only conclude that Jesus Christ is nothing more than a hood ornament used as a front for anger, hatred, bigotry, and a hunger for power. The fault for that lies with Christians and no one else.

  • To paraphrase Ray: “I’d believe you [Do you mean that?] if you lived up to your standards.”

    And I’ll be an atheist when they start living up to their standards — oh, wait! They don’t have any! That would be imposing moral absolutes on people, and we can’t have that.

  • I don’t know if “Voldemort” appears in the Declaration of Independence, which document incidentally provides unequivocal affirmation of both the beliefs of the American people as well as their faith in — “God”!

  • The similarities between Ray Garton’s exegesis and that of your run of the mill evangelical fundamentalist are striking, but sadly, not all that surprising. The resulting strawman massacre is, likewise, unsurprising.

  • Ray Garton:

    In the beginning, you detested our beliefs and rather have us not hold them — only to come around the second time to insist that we hold them?


  • The Declaration of Independence is just that — a declaration of America’s independence from Britain. While it remains a historical document of great significance, it is a document of its time and isn’t even accurate any longer — it identifies the United States as being made up of 13 states. It is not the law of the land, nor is it a reflection of the character of this nation. The document that does that (and which is still valid today) is the United States Constitution, which remains in effect to this day and does not mention god or religion once. Out of slavering desperation, Christians often point to the date on the document, which uses the phrase “the year of our lord,” but that was simply the standard way of writing the date at that time, and was used by believers and non-believers alike. It is no more a statement of belief than using the names of the days of the week, which are based on pagan gods, is a statement of belief in those gods. If the forefathers wanted this to be a “Christian nation,” they would have explicitly pointed this out in the Constitution. Instead, that document reflects the character of this nation — no mention is made of god or religion as it outlines this secular government. No amount of groping or desperately reaching for straws will change that.

    Now, if you don’t mind, I have work to do, so I’m going to leave you to your snide Christ-like insults of those who don’t share your beliefs. Enjoy the rest of the year.

  • “No, e., my reference to your beliefs was an attempt to hold you to them.”

    “It would be easy to show respect for the beliefs of Christians if they adhered to those beliefs themselves.”

    So, which is it?

    Would you rather we repudiate our beliefs or hold them?

    “[T]he bible certainly isn’t a historical record, it’s a book of myths, so I see no reason to believe
    in Jesus Christ.”

    Okay — let me get this straight, based on your previous statement, it would appear as though your argument here is:

    ‘It would be easy to show respect for the beliefs of Christians if only they adhered to those beliefs themselves, which simply come from a book of myths?’

    In other words, your own intellectual powers demonstrated herein (not to mention, rhetorical prowess and logical thought) leaves much to be desired.

  • e.,

    Please refrain from abusive language.

    I appreciate your passion and I share your resolve and information you provide in defense of God.

  • I don’t see how exposing flaws in an opponent’s arguments counts as ‘abusive language’; but there you have it.

    Plus, it would behoove you to first examine the language you yourself employed in your own exchange with Mr. Garton prior to criticizing any of the others.

  • So many commentators, so little time and space….
    Just picking out a few tidbits; the founding fathers were not Christians, they despaired over the hodgepodge of conflicting dogma of the citizens, many-if not most- who had fled here from religious persecution of waring religious factions throughout Europe. As Jefferson so succinctly put it, “Is there anything that people won’t believe? ” The best they could do was to separate religion from government. That has not worked very well, as we have seen the injection of god into the pledge of allegiance in the fifties – due to the fear of communism, the swearing on the bible to take an official oath in court or in politics.

    Many of the wars mentioned by a previous commenter were not officially “holy wars” – but they were certainly backed by the churches. My own belief is that all wars are seeking to take over some resource that another group possesses, and religion is simply the handiest tool to use to convince people that by killing others, and dying themselves, this murder will give them eternal life.

    As to “cheering disrespect” – yes, I do think that showing open resentment for the power and influence worshipers have in our country is important. Although nonbelievers are a large segment of citizens, and have the lowest statistics of criminality, we are at the bottom of the list of for “trustworthy” in public office.

    As to scientists through history being Christians, considering the likelihood of being able to fund or publish anything in that realm without the blessing of church was nil – and even worse fates awaited you if you denied a belief, I would bet that most scientists professed beliefs they did not themselves believe. Look at poor Galileo, Issac Newton.

    So to wrap it up, I think that being able to openly protest and poke fun of what was “the holiest of holy’s” shows that humans are progressing towards a glimmer of enlightenment.


  • According to your magic book, Jesus Christ taught humility, but I see none of that in Christians today. He taught his followers to love one another, and even their enemies, but I CERTAINLY see none of THAT in Christians today.

    It seems to me like you’re arguing through exaggeration here. It surely can’t be the case that you’ve seen no humility in Christians today — that you’ve never seen a Christian act in a humble fashion because he believes that is the demand of his faith. Nor can it be the case that you’ve never seen Christians love others, including their enemies. What you mean is simply that you don’t always see this, and thus that Christians are obviously not living up to their beliefs all of the time — indeed are often not living up to their beliefs as fully as they could be.

    Now, unless your theory is that Christians are not supposed to be human beings, and thus are not supposed to have the tendency to allow baser instincts to overcome their ideas of what they ought to be doing, this is hardly surprising. I can’t think of any group whose members live up to their stated ideals all of the time.

    And so the above amounts to nothing other than to inform us that generally speaking you don’t like Christians and so you tend to recall their negative actions more than their positive ones. We learn about as much about Christians from your comment as we might learn about Mexicans from someone who said, “Mexicans say they come to this country to work, but so far as I can tell they’re always just sitting around being lazy.” And indeed, the effect of your comment on listeners who are or know Christians will be roughly as positive as the example comment would be on people who aren’t racists.

    *I* don’t believe in Jesus Christ — outside of the bible, there is no record that he ever existed, and the bible certainly isn’t a historical record, it’s a book of myths, so I see no reason to believe in Jesus Christ.

    This isn’t true on either point. At a minimum, there are a large number of extra-biblical ancient sources that mention Jesus because there were a number of gospels, epistles, and other accounts which had some degree of following but were rejected by the Church when it was assembling the official canon of the New Testament. While the Church considered these documents not to be inspired scripture, they certainly do present a number of texts which attest that the authors believed the Christ did in fact live in first century Palestine roughly was was described in the canonical Gospels.

    Similarly, several non-Christian ancient sources make reference to Jesus, if only to say something along the lines of, “And the Christians believe that Jesus, a preacher who lived in the time of Herod Antipas, rose from the dead after three days.”

    Further, you seem to suffer under the illusion that there is some bright and clear distinction between “historical records” and other forms of writing in the ancient world. This isn’t really the case. Certainly, you’ll find some people self-consciously writing “history” such as Livy, Tacitus, Suetonius, etc. But that doesn’t necessarily mean that all of the things they relate happen as described. And much modern historical work consists of taking a variety of sources (including sources such as personal letters which were not at all written with the intent of being historical documents) and using them as testimony in order to get an idea of events or conditions at a given time. In light of that, it’s certainly not in appropriate to look at all of the accounts and letters which mention Christ as someone who lived in historical Palestine and take it from that that he did in fact live there. Indeed, the idea of claiming that the very existence of Jesus is a myth is a comparatively modern one. Non-Christian sources in the past tended to accept Christ existed, but deny that he was God and insist that his followers stole and hid his body in order to claim he was risen from the dead.

    And that’s not even getting into the misconceptions you seem to have about what a “myth” is.

    Doubtless you have your own strongly held reasons for considering Christianity false, but if you’re going to wade into an area in which people know a great deal more than you and make a bunch of statements which are clearly false, you’re hardly going to be taken as an authority.

  • Karen L.,

    So the founding fathers were not Christian?

    Hey, I have a bridge to sell you in Brooklyn!

  • @Tito, thanks for responding to me and Reg. Kudos for the inclusive debate. I’m off my high horse now, so while I urge you to reconsider your stance on LD (CYE is a brilliant show, even if it .. missed .. with that joke), I’m not going to engage in polemics. Cheers.

  • Yes, the Declaration of Independence mentions god. But it’s not a legal document and does not represent the law of the nation. That came later, in the Constitution. The Declaration of Independence simply declared America’s separation from British rule. It is NOT the law of the land, and since we have been separate from Britain for over two hundred years, it’s not exactly a document of our time. While it mentions god, it also states, “The unanimous Declaration of the thirteen United States of America.” America has more than thirteen states now, so it’s not even accurate anymore. While it is a historical document of enormous significance, it is not a legal document — that came LATER. It says absolutely NOTHING about our rights being secured by Christianity and does not mention Christianity at all. It refers to “the opinions of MANKIND” and states that “governments are instituted among MEN.” It refers to “the Laws of Nature and of Nature’s God,” which is a reflection of DEISM or even PANTHEISM, which most definitely are NOT Christian. Mention pantheism to a Christian and if you’re lucky enough to be speaking to a Christian who even knows what the word means, get ready for a lecture about its evils. Later, the Constitution — which DOES NOT mention god (a point Christians would like you to ignore) — set up the law of the land. America’s founding fathers clearly intended this to be a nation DIVORCED from religion. Over the years, Christians have tried to have their way with the forefathers’ intentions, twisting and raping their words. It continues to this day.
    When the United States began to involve itself in foreign affairs, it became necessary to make sure that other countries — particularly those that were, unlike America, RULED by religion — understood that this was NOT a religious nation but a SECULAR government. To this end, very explicit reference was made to this in the Treaty of Tripoli in the 1790s to make it CLEAR that the United States was NOT a Christian nation. From the Treaty of Tripoli:
    “As the Government of the United States of America is not, in any sense, founded on the Christian religion; as it has in itself no character of enmity against the laws, religion, or tranquillity, of Musselmen; and as the said States never have entered into any war or act of hostility against any Mehomitan nation, it is declared by the parties that no pretext arising from religious opinions shall ever produce an interruption of the harmony existing between the two countries.”
    A statement on the document by President John Adams includes the following:
    “And to the End that the said Treaty may be observed, and performed with good Faith on the part of the United States, I have ordered the premises to be made public; And I do hereby enjoin and require all persons bearing office civil or military within the United States, and all other citizens or inhabitants thereof, faithfully to observe and fulfill the said Treaty and every clause and article thereof.”
    In May of 1797, the treaty was read aloud in full on the Senate floor, and on June 7, ratification of the treaty was unanimously approved, with 23 of the 37 sitting senators present.
    The 7th Amendment of the Constitution refers to “the common law,” which Christians often claim is derived from the foundation of Christianity. Using various quotes, including some from Supreme Court Justices, they claim that Christianity was part of the laws of England. This is still more self-serving nonsense.
    In a February 10, 1814 letter to Thomas Cooper, Thomas Jefferson discussed the history of common law as follows:
    “For we know that the common law is that system of law which was introduced by the Saxons on their settlement in England, and altered from time to time by proper legislative authority from that time to the date of Magna Charta, which terminates the period of the common law. … This settlement took place about the middle of the fifth century. But Christianity was not introduced till the seventh century; the conversion of the first Christian king of the Heptarchy having taken place about the year 598, and that of the last about 686. Here then, was a space of two hundred years, during which the common law was in existence, and Christianity no part of it.”
    ” … if any one chooses to build a doctrine on any law of that period, supposed to have been lost, it is incumbent on him to prove it to have existed, and what were its contents. These were so far alterations of the common law, and became themselves a part of it. But none of these adopt Christianity as a part of the common law. If, therefore, from the settlement of the Saxons to the introduction of Christianity among them, that system of religion could not be a part of the common law, because they were not yet Christians, and if, having their laws from that period to the close of the common law, we are all able to find among them no such act of adoption, we may safely affirm (though contradicted by all the judges and writers on earth) that Christianity neither is, nor ever was a part of the common law.”
    In the same letter, Jefferson explains how the confusion over Christianity came about. It was a misinterpretation of a Latin term by Prisot, “ancien scripture.” It means “ancient scripture” but was misinterpreted to mean “holy scripture.” As a result, many WRONGLY believed that the common law came from the bible. It did not. Jefferson writes:
    “And Blackstone repeats, in the words of Sir Matthew Hale, that ‘Christianity is part of the laws of England,’ citing Ventris and Strange ubi surpa. 4. Blackst. 59. Lord Mansfield qualifies it a little by saying that ‘The essential principles of revealed religion are part of the common law.’ In the case of the Chamberlain of London v. Evans, 1767. But he cites no authority, and leaves us at our peril to find out what, in the opinion of the judge, and according to the measure of his foot or his faith, are those essential principles of revealed religion obligatory on us as a part of the common law. Thus we find this string of authorities, when examined to the beginning, all hanging on the same hook, a perverted expression of Priscot’s, or on one another, or nobody.”
    Christians claim that Jefferson was a Christian, but his own words do not reflect this. Much of this comes from the fact that when Christians see the word “god,” they instantly think it refers to THEIR god. In fact, the word “god” has been used with several meanings over time, like “nature,” or a general reference to the supernatural. Jefferson was quite skeptical and fond of science. He rejected Christianity’s mysticism and superstion to such an extent that he compiled what has come to be called The Jefferson Bible. He edited the gospels, removing all of Christ’s miracles and all reference to the supernatural, leaving only what he saw as Christ’s moral philosophy. Here are some quotes from Thomas Jefferson on religion and Christianity:
    “Millions of innocent men, women and children, since the introduction of Christianity, have been burnt, tortured, fined and imprisoned; yet we have not advanced one inch towards uniformity.”
    — Thomas Jefferson, Notes on Virginia, 1782
    “Where the preamble declares, that coercion is a departure from the plan of the holy author of our religion, an amendment was proposed by inserting ‘Jesus Christ,’ so that it would read ‘A departure from the plan of Jesus Christ, the holy author of our religion;’ the insertion was rejected by the great majority, in proof that they meant to comprehend, within the mantle of its protection, the Jew and the Gentile, the Christian and Mohammedan, the Hindoo and Infidel of every denomination.”
    -Thomas Jefferson, Autobiography, in reference to the Virginia Act for Religious Freedom
    “Question with boldness even the existence of a god; because if there be one he must approve of the homage of reason more than that of blindfolded fear.”
    — Thomas Jefferson, letter to Peter Carr, August 10, 1787
    “I concur with you strictly in your opinion of the comparative merits of atheism and demonism, and really see nothing but the latter in the being worshiped by many who think themselves Christians.”
    — Thomas Jefferson, letter to Richard Price, Jan. 8, 1789 — This was in response to a letter Price had written to Jefferson on Oct. 26. about the harm done by religion, in which Price had written, “Would not Society be better without Such religions? Is Atheism less pernicious than Demonism?”
    “They (the clergy) believe that any portion of power confided to me, will be exerted in opposition to their schemes. And they believe rightly; for I have sworn upon the altar of god, eternal hostility against every form of tyranny over the mind of man. But this is all they have to fear from me: and enough, too, in their opinion.”
    — Thomas Jefferson to Dr. Benjamin Rush, Sept. 23, 1800
    “The whole history of these books (the Gospels) is so defective and doubtful that it seems vain to attempt minute enquiry into it: and such tricks have been played with their text, and with the texts of other books relating to them, that we have a right, from that cause, to entertain much doubt what parts of them are genuine. In the New Testament there is internal evidence that parts of it have proceeded from an extraordinary man; and that other parts are of the fabric of very inferior minds. It is as easy to separate those parts, as to pick out diamonds from dunghills.”
    — Thomas Jefferson, letter to John Adams, January 24, 1814
    “If we did a good act merely from love of God and a belief that it is pleasing to Him, whence arises the morality of the Atheist? … Their virtue, then, must have had some other foundation than the love of God.”
    — Thomas Jefferson, letter to Thomas Law, June 13, 1814
    “In every country and in every age, the priest has been hostile to liberty. He is always in alliance with the despot, abetting his abuses in return for protection to his own.”
    — Thomas Jefferson, letter to Horatio G. Spafford, March 17, 1814
    “Ridicule is the only weapon which can be used against unintelligible propositions. Ideas must be distinct before reason can act upon them; and no man ever had a distinct idea of the trinity. It is the mere Abracadabra of the mountebanks calling themselves the priests of Jesus.”
    — Thomas Jefferson, letter to Francis Adrian Van der Kemp, 30 July, 1816
    “You say you are a Calvinist. I am not. I am of a sect by myself, as far as I know.”
    — Thomas Jefferson, letter to Ezra Stiles Ely, June 25, 1819
    “My opinion is that there would never have been an infidel, if there had never been a priest. The artificial structures they have built on the purest of all moral systems, for the purpose of deriving from it pence and power, revolts those who think for themselves, and who read in that system only what is really there.”
    — Thomas Jefferson, letter to Mrs. Samuel H. Smith, August, 6, 1816
    “Among the sayings and discourses imputed to him (Jesus) by his biographers, I find many passages of fine imagination, correct morality, and of the most lovely benevolence; and others again of so much ignorance, so much absurdity, so much untruth, charlatanism, and imposture, as to pronounce it impossible that such contradictions should have proceeded from the same being.”
    — Thomas Jefferson, letter to William Short, April 13, 1820
    “Man once surrendering his reason, has no remaining guard against absurdities the most monstrous, and like a ship without rudder, is the sport of every wind.”
    — Thomas Jefferson to James Smith, 1822.
    “And the day will come when the mystical generation of Jesus, by the supreme being as his father in the womb of a virgin will be classed with the fable of the generation of Minerve in the brain of Jupiter. But may we hope that the dawn of reason and freedom of thought in these United States will do away with this artificial scaffolding, and restore to us the primitive and genuine doctrines of this most venerated reformer of human errors.”
    — Thomas Jefferson, Letter to John Adams, April 11, 1823
    There are more, but I think I’ve made my point. When Christians say Jefferson was a Christian, they are either ignorant or lying. And Jefferson is only ONE of the forefathers. There is overwhelming evidence that America’s founders were not unanimously Christian, and Christianity had absolutely nothing to do with the founding of this nation.
    The Christians fighting for prayer in government and public schools — and doing so AGAINST the teachings of Jesus Christ — really aren’t interested in prayer. That is only one step in a greater effort. They want nothing less than to overthrow this country, to make it a Christian nation with Christian rule. To do this, they must undercut and eventually abandon the Constitution. To stop this, it is vital that we all know as much as we can of the TRUTH about this country’s history, its founders, and their intentions. Christians have been fooled by these falsehoods because of their own ignorance and willingness to believe whatever their religious leaders tell them. Don’t let them fool YOU because of yours. Educate yourself. And when you hear these lies about the United States, loudly denounce them. If you don’t and if the Christians have their way, this will no longer be the United States of America that our founding fathers created.

  • Karen L.

    For your information, it was not the scientific theories of Galileo that were found heretical (in fact, many Jesuit scientists at the time held to similar notions and even subscribed to virtually the same ideas which were, in fact, published with expressed approval of the Pope himself); rather, it was Galileo’s stubborn insistance that the foundation of Catholic theology itself be compromised simply at the behest of his own personal theological leanings.

    What goes unmentioned is that beginning in the Middle Ages, the Church was supporting research and even building observatories in the towers of well-sited churches. These facilities were made available to astronomers like Copernicus, Kepler and Galileo. Nor did the controversy over Galileo stifle scientific inquiry. “The fact is, Catholic scientists were essentially permitted to carry on their research unhindered as long as they treated the motion of the earth as a hypothesis,” as indeed it was at the time.

    Heck, it was the Catholic Church herself which founded the Linceorum Academia (i.e., the Academy of the Sciences) in 1603. Indeed, if anything, the conflict between evolutionary science and creationism in the United States comes from the Protestant tradition, not the Catholic one.

    It is a relatively simple matter to show that many great scientists, like Louis Pasteur, have been Catholic. Much more revealing, however, is the surprising number of Catholic churchmen, priests in particular, whose scientific work has been so extensive and significant. At the forefront were the Jesuits, who led the way in many fields and “so dominated the field of seismology that it became known as ‘the Jesuit science.’” One of the Jesuit-scientists highlighted by the author is Father Roger Boscovich (1711-1787) who won praise throughout Europe for his advances in astronomy, natural science and the beginnings of atomic theory.

    “The Big Bang” theory itself pertaining to the notion that the universe originated in an extremely dense and hot space and expanded was, in fact, developed by a Belgian priest?

    Here are other examples of scientists who were themselves members of the Catholic clergy:
    1. Mendel, a monk, who first established the laws of heredity.
    2. Copernicus, a priest, who expounded upon the Copernican system.
    3. Steensen, a Bishop, who became the father of geology.
    4. Regiomontanus, a Bishop and Papal astronomer who became the father of modern astronomy.
    5. Theodoric, a Bishop, who discovered anesthesia in the 13th century.
    6. Kircher, a priest, who made the first definite statement of the germ theory of disease.
    7. Cassiodorus, a priest, who invented the watch.
    8. Picard, a priest, who became the first to measure accurately a degree of the meridian.

    Here is a list of just some Catholic scientists:

    Algue, a priest, invented the barocyclonometer, to detect approach of cyclones.

    Ampere, the founder of the science of electrodynamics and investigator of the laws of electromagnetism.

    Becquerel, Antoine Cesar, the founder of electrochemistry.

    Becquerel, Antoine Henri, the discoverer of radioactivity.

    Binet, mathematician and astronomer, who set forth the principle, “Binet’s Theorem.”

    Braille, who invented the Braille system for the blind.

    Buffon, who wrote the first work on natural history.

    Carrell, the Nobel prize winner in medicine and physiology, is renowned for his work in surgical technique.

    Caesalpinus, a Papal physician — the first to construct a system of botany.

    Cassiodorus, a priest, who invented the watch.

    Columbo discovered the pulmonary circulation of the blood.

    Copernicus, a priest, who expounded the Copernican system.

    Coulomb established the fundamental laws of static electricity.

    De Chauliac, a Papal physician — the father of modern surgery and hospitals.

    De Vico, a priest, discovered six comets.

    Descartes, who founded analytical geometry.

    Dumas, who invented a method of ascertaining vapor densities.

    Endlicher, botanist and historian, who established a new system of classifying plants.

    Eustachius, for whom the Eustachian tube was named, who became one of the founders of modern anatomy.

    Fabricius, who discovered the valvular system of the veins.

    Fallopius, who was the eminent physiologist from/for whom the Fallopian tube was named.

    Fizeau, the first to determine experimentally the velocity of light.

    Foucault, who invented the first practical electric arc lamp; he refuted the corpuscular theory of light; he invented the gyroscope.

    Fraunhofer, the initiator of spectrum analysis; he established laws of diffraction.

    Fresnel, who contributed more to the science of optics than any other man.

    Galilei, a great astronomer, is the father of experimental science.

    Galvani, one of the pioneers of electricity, was also an anatomist and physiologist.

    Gioja, father of scientific navigation, invented the mariner’s compass.

    Gramme, who invented the Gramme dynamo.

    Guttenberg, who invented printing.

    Herzog, who discovered a cure for infantile paralysis.

    Holland, who invented the first practical sub marine.

    Kircher, a priest, who made the first definite statement of the germ theory of disease.

    Laennec, who invented the stethoscope.

    Lancist, a Papal physician — the father of clinical medicine.

    Latreille, the pioneer in entomology.

    Lavoisier, the Father of Modern Chemistry.

    Leverrier, the discoverer of the planet Neptune.

    Lully, who is said to have been the first to employ chemical symbols.

    Malpighi, a Papal physician, himself a botanist, became the father of comparative physiology.

    Marconi’s place in radio remains unsurpassed.

    Mariotte, who discovered Mariotte’s law of gases.

    Mendel, a monk, the first to establish the laws of heredity.

    Morgagni, founder of modern pathology; made important studies in aneurisms.

    Muller was the greatest biologist of the 19th century, founder of modern physiology.

    Pashcal demonstrated practically that a column of air has weight.

    Pasteur, called the “Father of Bacteriology,” and inventor of bio-therapeutics, was the leading scientist of the 19th century.

    Picard, a priest, who became the first to measure accurately a degree of the meridian.

    Regiomontanus, a Bishop and Papal astronomer, who became the father of modern astronomy.

    Scheiner, a priest, who invented the pantograph and made a telescope that permitted the first systematic investigation of sun spots.

    Secchi, who invented the meteorograph.

    Steensen, a Bishop, who became the father of geology.

    Theodoric, a Bishop, who discovered anesthesia in the 13th century.

    Torricelli, who invented the barometer.

    Vesalius, the founder of modern anatomical science.

    Volta, who invented the first complete galvanic battery; the “volt” is named after him.

    Other scientists: Agricola, Albertus Magnus, Bacon, Bartholomeus, Bayma, Beccaria, Behalm, Bernard, Biondo, Biot, Bolzano, Borrus, Boscovitch, Bosio, Bourgeois, Branly, Caldani, Cambou, Camel, Cardan, Carnoy, Cassini, Cauchy, Cavaliere, Caxton, Champollion, Chevreul, Clavius, De Rossi, Divisch, Dulong, Dwight, Eckhel, Epee, Fabre, Fabri, Faye, Ferrari, Gassendi, Gay-Lussac, Gordon, Grimaldi, Hauy, Heis, Helmont, Hengler, Heude, Hilgard, Jussieu, Kelly, Lamarck, Laplace, Linacre, Malus, Mersenne, Monge, Muller, Murphy, Murray, Nelston, Nieuwland, Nobili, Nollet, Ortelius, Ozaman, Pelouze, Piazzi, Pitra, Plumier, Pouget, Provancher, Regnault, Riccioli, Sahagun, Santorini, Schwann, Schwarz, Secchi, Semmelweis, Spallanzani, Takamine, Tieffentaller, Toscanelli, Tulasne, Valentine, Vernier, Vieta, Da Vinci, Waldseemuller, Wincklemann, Windle, and a host of others, too many to mention.

  • mohawk:

    You’re going to hurt your back moving that goalpost.

    This is what you originally said:

    “Good people will always do good things, evil people will always do evil things…it takes religion to make good people do evil things.”

    That’s such a monumentally stupid comment I can understand why you’d run away from it. It’s as dumb as saying Hitler was motivated by Islam because he once spoke favorably of its ideals.

    Since you aren’t interested in exerting yourself to read anything that might refute your intensely held precommitments, let me briefly explain Browning’s important book: he studied a reserve police battalion which assisted in the Holocaust in Poland. If memory serves, none of them was a Nazi party member. Instead, they were all comfortably middle class and middle-aged German men, unremarkably so, in fact.

    They killed 38,000 people.

    Instead of playing the tattered “Hitler was a religious fanatic!” card so beloved of atheists who want to end rational discussion rather than trying it, if you considered basic human history, common sense and experience, you’d understand the following: good men do horrifically evil things for reasons entirely unrelated to religion. As “Ordinary Men” demonstrates, they will do evil things out of a fear of losing face before their comrades. Indoctrination by the state. Peer pressure. Desire to belong/conformism. Fear. Any number of excuses that that have nothing to do with religion. Which the National Socialists weren’t all that big on, as, say, Alfred Delp, Martin Niemoller and Dietrich Bonhoeffer would have been happy to point out. Had not the first and third not been executed by the Nazis, that is.

    If you find glib comments like your initial quote to be an agreeable opiate, fine. Just don’t expect to ever be taken seriously by those you savage.

    Nevertheless, keep spewing those talking points cut from the atheist websites (e.g., I doubt you have a copy of Mein Kampf to hand–most people don’t. Even fewer have read the dreadful thing all the way through. I somehow doubt atheist crusaders on the internet are any different).

  • “To stop this, it is vital that we all know as much as we can of the TRUTH about this country’s history, its founders, and their intentions.”

    Historical knowledge is a wonderful thing and it consists of far more than cutting and pasting quotes from atheist websites. For example, Ben Franklin was perhaps the most secular of the Founding Fathers, and yet, according to James Madison he made this statement at the Constitutional Convention:

    “Mr. President

    The small progress we have made after 4 or five weeks close attendance & continual reasonings with each other,”our different sentiments on almost every question, several of the last producing as many noes and ays, is methinks a melancholy proof of the imperfection of the Human Understanding. We indeed seem to feel our own want of political wisdom, some we have been running about in search of it. We have gone back to ancient history for models of Government, and examined the different forms of those Republics which having been formed with the seeds of their own dissolution now no longer exist. And we have viewed Modern States all round Europe, but find none of their Constitutions suitable to our circumstances.

    In this situation of this Assembly, groping as it were in the dark to find political truth, and scarce able to distinguish it when presented to us, how has it happened, Sir, that we have not hitherto once thought of humbly applying to the Father of lights to illuminate our understandings? In the beginning of the Contest with G. Britain, when we were sensible of danger we had daily prayer in this room for the divine protection. ”Our prayers, Sir, were heard, and they were graciously answered. All of us who were engaged in the struggle must have observed frequent instances of a Superintending providence in our favor. To that kind providence we owe this happy opportunity of consulting in peace on the means of establishing our future national felicity. And have we now forgotten that powerful friend? I have lived, Sir, a long time, and the longer I live, the more convincing proofs I see of this truth- that God governs in the affairs of men. And if a sparrow cannot fall to the ground without his notice, is it probable that an empire can rise without his aid? We have been assured, Sir, in the sacred writings, that “except the Lord build the House they labour in vain that build it.” I firmly believe this; and I also believe that without his concurring aid we shall succeed in this political building no better than the Builders of Babel: We shall be divided by our little partial local interests; our projects will be confounded, and we ourselves shall become a reproach and bye word down to future ages. And what is worse, mankind may hereafter from this unfortunate instance, despair of establishing Governments be Human Wisdom and leave it to chance, war and conquest.

    I therefore beg leave to move, that henceforth prayers imploring the assistance of Heaven, and its blessings on our deliberations, be held in this Assembly every morning before we proceed to business, and that one or more of the Clergy of the City be requested to officiate in that service.”

    By the standards of our time, almost all of the Founding Fathers were deeply religious men. Did they frequently criticize what they considered to be follies of churches? Of course, as we often do on this web site. However, using out of context quotes in an attempt to convince Americans that the Founders were motivated solely by secularism is ludicrous and will only convince atheist true believers.

  • Donald R. McClarey:

    You demonstrate once again a knowledge of American history, which you seem to hold to such an admirably considerable degree.

    I hope that you might consider creating entries at TAC devoted to the same subject as that in your above comments, concerning the fervent religious devotion of our country’s Founding Fathers.

    Even the one you authored concerning John Adams, I found similarly edifying — his own anti-Catholicism notwithstanding.

  • e.,

    So when are you going to put a pic to your avatar?

  • When my avatar puts a pic on me!

    Oh, by the way, now you see the kind of controversy you yourself generated as a direct result of your having made such an entry?

    Kudos for maintaining some semblance of patience, though.

    You and your partner, Matt McDonald, have more patience than I give you guys credit for — well done!

  • Rest assured e, that eventually most of the Founding Fathers and their religious beliefs will receive coverage, usually with some sort of Catholic tie in as I did in regard to John Adams.

  • Awesome! Thanks, Donald!

    You truly are both gentleman & scholar! Looking forward to these!

  • e.,

    You mean by the constant posting of your comments?

    Get off your miniature low horse and put a pic on.

    Or you’ll forever be called a lower case vowel (LCV) by me from now until death.

  • Tito:

    I’ve been called far worse than a “lower case vowel”, so I suppose I should be grateful to you and your friend Matt by sparing me from a fate far worse in both current and previous engagements, however heated they became.

  • I can think of no words except disgust. I find it utterly disgusting.
    I just cancelled my subscription to HBO. I also emailed HBO and explained that my subscription was being cancelled due to the episode of Curb.

    I will continue to Boycott HBO and Time Warner and affiliates. Enough is enough. I think that it is the duty of every Christian to boycott such blasphemy.

    For HBO to counter that it was done in a humorous way is nonsense. I believe that HBO would never have allowed Mr. David to urinate on an atheist symbol.

    I believe in freedom of speech, so there will always be a Mr. David, and many more that are of the same view. The rest of us have the ability tune him out. I will not pay for such garbage. If we shrug our shoulders, we bear the guilt for condoning such action.

  • A Christian: Your sentiments are noble, but what do you mean by “atheist symbol”?

  • How ’bout one of those chrome coelecanths people affix to the rear of their cars, the one’s inscribed with the letters , “DARWIN”?

  • A Christian:

    What a remarkable difference it would make if many Christians behaved as you did here.

    That is, one of the very reasons why, as Tito Taco Man himself suggested in his entry, that Hollywood would not even dare make fun of Islam in a similar manner is because of the effective action (as opposed to futile over-reactions) of Muslims as a collective that would put out such swift opposition that would undoubtedly be fatal to them.

    Christians are rarely capable of doing the same. The most they do, as with the Da Vinci Code, is make loud noise; nothing more.

  • Art–Oh, yeah. Those things.

    You usually see them in ironic juxtaposition with the “Coexist” bumper sticker.

  • Pull your heads out your arses you Philestines. If you don’t like it, or more aptly, don’t understand it, then just simply don’t watch it. I don’t particularly like the things Catholics say, I find them a lot more offensive than you find a little piss on a painting, and thats why I don’t go to church. But I don’t try to stop Catholics from going to church if thats their choice. And that’s because, I’m not an ignorant, arrogant, puritanical asshole.

  • Jon,

    Please no profane language.

    Please read our comments policy:

    We don’t watch it. I’m sure most of us don’t, but we don’t like it when our God is insulted, so we have a right as Americans to voice our opinions.

    If you don’t like it, move to Communist China. I’m sure they welcome your opinion.

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  • Blogging while drunk Jon is never a good idea.

  • “I find them a lot more offensive than you find a little piss on a painting”

    Amazing how atheists have windows unto men’s souls when they don’t actually believe in souls.

  • “Pull your heads out your arses you Philestines. If you don’t like it, or more aptly, don’t understand it, then just simply don’t watch it. I don’t particularly like the things Catholics say, I find them a lot more offensive than you find a little piss on a painting, and thats why I don’t go to church. But I don’t try to stop Catholics from going to church if thats their choice. And that’s because, I’m not an ignorant, arrogant, puritanical asshole.”

    What’s so ironic, Jon, is that your very comments actually prove that you’re in fact such “an ignorant, arrogant, puritanical asshole”.

    That is, “[i]f you don’t like it, or more aptly, don’t understand it”, then why for heaven’s sake did you go so far as to visit a “Catholic” website in order to offend Catholics, whose Catholic religion you obviously have no understanding of?

    Why don’t you take your own advice and just skip watching/visiting Catholic websites?

  • Tito?

    Moderation? Why?

  • ?

    You’re not on moderation.

    You were on it for an hour a long time ago, but not anymore. I double checked.

  • e. the moderation system seems to have gone rogue today, as I have been pulling comments out of moderation all morning. Hopefully wordpress will cure the glitch that is causing this.


    Jewish hate is as old as some ancient Hebrew prophets.
    Speaking of anti-Semitism, it’s Jerry Falwell and other fundy leaders who’ve gleefully predicted that in the future EVERY nation will be against Israel (an international first?) and that TWO-THIRDS of all Jews will be killed, right?
    Wrong! It’s the ancient Hebrew prophet Zechariah who predicted all this in the 13th and 14th chapters of his book! The last prophet, Malachi, explains the reason for this future Holocaust that’ll outdo even Hitler’s by stating that “Judah hath dealt treacherously” and “the Lord will cut off the man that doeth this” and asks “Why do we deal treacherously every man against his brother?”
    Haven’t evangelicals generally been the best friends of Israel and persons perceived to be Jewish? Then please explain the recent filthy, hate-filled, back-stabbing tirades by David Letterman (and Sandra Bernhard and Kathy Griffin and Larry David) against Sarah Palin and other Christians, and explain why most Jewish leaders have seemingly condoned the continuing “crucifixion” of Christians and even their Leader!
    While David, Sandra, Kathy and Larry are tragically turning comedy into tragedy, they are also helping to speed up and fulfill the Final Holocaust a la Zechariah and Malachi, thus helping to make the Bible even more believable!
    (For even more stunning information, visit MSN and type in “Separation of Raunch and State,” “Michael the Narc-Angel,” “Bible Verses Obama Avoids” and “The Earliest Hate Criminals” to learn even more about Jewish connections!)

  • Roma,

    As a Catholic, we tend not to dwell on prophecy as much as our Protestant brothers and sisters.

    But it’s a stretch to say that Larry David’s misguided attacks on the Catholic faith would cause Catholics to attack Israel.

    If there is any action, Catholics tend to switch away from his show or even cancel subscriptions to HBO. But that’s about it. Oh, and complain on websites such as this.

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  • “If you don’t like it, move to Communist China. I’m sure they welcome your opinion.”

    Tito, you are an intolerable, racist disgrace to your own religion which is already so disgraceful that people find it comical to piss on your savior for cheap entertainment value. Oh, so valiant the defender of Catholics and Jesus that thou purifies the realm of the cyber-blog in the name of the Lord. Don’t you see that David does this stuff to get a rise out of you people. Your religious conservatism (what you call “faith”) binds you to a realm of predictability, and you are doomed to react with puppet like instincts to offenses that don’t directly effect you. If you truly were spiritually comfortable, why would you care what a fictitious character does on a fictional program. Instead you comfort yourself with the blanket of Catholicism and the knowledge that you “fit in”, attempting to make narrow-minded fools out of those who reasonably object to such hypocrisy as Christianity.

  • Xavier,

    Listen to your logic…

    I’m intolerable for voicing my defense of my faith, but Larry David is not intolerant because he relieves himself on God?

    You just undermined your own argument.

  • “…attempting to make narrow-minded fools out of those who reasonably object to such hypocrisy as Christianity.”

    Narrow-minded fools, so-implied, are those who are intolerant of other people’s perspectives; thus, you have demonstrated yourself not only as a prime example of such but also an apparantly unintelligent arse whose cognitive deficiencies are so severe that s/he actually refutes his/herself in the very comments s/he presents. Well done.

    “…who reasonably object…”

    Nice demonstration of petitio principii; perhaps you might first present an argument for why their objection was reasonable as opposed to your demanding we concede to your rather absurd assertion here.

  • “I’m intolerable for voicing my defense of my faith, but Larry David is not intolerant because he relieves himself on God?”

    What? When did I defend Larry David? I never said he wasn’t intolerant; the man is as rigid and prone to bigotry as you. Actually, I bet you’d make good friends given your shared personality defects. My point had less to do with David and more to do with your proclaimation “If you don’t like it, move to Communist China. I’m sure they welcome your opinion.” That statement is NOT the same as voicing defense of your faith. And listen to YOUR logic— just because David has a view in opposition to yours does NOT instantly validate your argument. There you go again being so incredibly narrow-minded…

    And to e.:

    You’re entirely correct— I do stand intolerant of those who are intolerable, thanks for your reiteration of my argument; you seemed to have managed to comprehend the main idea I conveyed.

    And here is the presentation of the argument I neglected to cover in detail (I thought it quite obvious) to which all are free to reasonably object:

    Acceptance of God/Jesus via Catholicism is essential to obtain salvation when you pass on.

    Any competent individual thinking with their own free will (this excludes you two) is reasonable in thinking the above is completely ludicrous, highly offensive to modern society, and an enormous waste of time.

    *How am I doin’ boys? Workin’ towards my second strike or what!

  • X,

    You did defend Larry David when you compared my ‘intolerant’ beliefs to Larry David relieving himself. Reread what you wrote, you made a direct reference to my defense:

    Tito, you are an intolerable, racist disgrace to your own religion which is already so disgraceful that people find it comical to piss on your savior for cheap entertainment value.

    So because I am intolerant that is why Larry David relieved himself?

    Again, you’re having problems with logic.

  • You are intolerant, yes. But your religion is intolerant whether or not you exist, whether or not people worship it, whether or not people pay it any mind. Do you see the non-exclusive relationship I presumed was already obvious? It is not simply because your religion is intolerant that David relieved himself on your savior’s likeness, but because it represents little to no value to his fictional character. Here, I’ll settle this once and for all in a way that simultaneously clears David’s actions and relieves your stress: Curb Your Enthusiasm isn’t real. It’s a scripted (often improvised) television program that is set in a world similar to our reality, but slightly off-kilter. David isn’t really playing himself, the woman portraying his wife on the program is not his real-life wife (although now ex-wife). The events, although inspired by reality, never actually occurred. Possibly in this Jewish ethnocentric (though self-deprecating) fictional land called “Hollywood,” Jesus doesn’t represent what he does in our reality. Honestly, I can’t argue any longer it’s been fun but I’ll have to throw in the towel and begin packing for communist China, comrade. Keep fighting the good fight Tito. I hope we can remain friends, nay Brothers!

  • So in the case of Tito, you hurl the absurd accusation of his being intolerant all the while demonstrating the very same kind of intolerance you purportedly detested in Tito?

    Also, you yet again wish us to concede to your assertion that it is “reasonable” for modern society to object Catholicism; yet, you’ve made no argument whatsoever as to why such a thing is “reasonable” other than to demonstrate for the nth time the very extent of not only your ineptitude in conducting (let alone, formulating) arguments but also the sheer magnitude of your own stupidity.

    Thus, any further communication with you (unless, of course, you finally decide to demonstrate some aspect of human rationality and not simply render yet again a superb immitation of the beast) would be tremendously futile.

  • Xanadu/Xavier,

    That was a good comment up until the very last sentence.

    There’s no need for that type of juvenile behavior.

    Please be charitable when engaging in dialogue.

    Your brother in Christ,


  • I’m sorry but I hear almost every religion being made fun of these days. They weren’t targeting the Catholics. It’s a joke that makes people laugh and by making it a controversial joke, it was more popular.

The Obama Administration and Freedom of Speech

Wednesday, October 7, AD 2009

George Washington-Freedom of Speech

“Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.”

The Founding Fathers left no doubt which freedoms they held most important.  They inserted them into the First Amendment to the Constitution.  Freedom of speech and of the press come right after freedom of religion.  These freedoms, and all the others set forth in the Constitution, are the birthright of all Americans and a precious example to the rest of the world.  That is why I am bemused by the manner in which the Obama administration appears to be indifferent to attempts to undermine freedom of speech and of the press at the UN.

Hattip to Instapundit.  In an article here at the The Weekly Standard, Anne Bayefsky, writes about the Obama administration signing on to a freedom of expression resolution.

“The new resolution, championed by the Obama administration, has a number of disturbing elements. It emphasizes that “the exercise of the right to freedom of expression carries with it special duties and responsibilities . . .” which include taking action against anything meeting the description of “negative racial and religious stereotyping.” It also purports to “recognize . . . the moral and social responsibilities of the media” and supports “the media’s elaboration of voluntary codes of professional ethical conduct” in relation to “combating racism, racial discrimination, xenophobia and related intolerance.”

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One Response to The Obama Administration and Freedom of Speech

  • Two thoughts

    1. I find it interesting that the same resolution that contains “Stresses that condemning and addressing,. . . any advocacy of national, racial or religious hatred that constitutes incitement to discrimination, hostility or violence, . . . .” also contains ” Recognizes that the open public debate of ideas can be among the best protections against racism, racial discrimination, xenophobia, and related intolerance, and can play a positive role in combating national, racial, or religious hatred”

    2. Given our national heritage and values, how many of us shout “there oughta be a law!” when the “Piss-Christ” is displayed? I do not include in that group people who simply point out the tasteless, offensive, sacrilegious and intolerant nature of the “work of art.”

Ahmadinejad Had a Jewish Past

Saturday, October 3, AD 2009

The disputed president of Iran, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, apparently converted to Islam at the age of four (4) from Judaism along with his parents.

No joke, the man wanting to “wipe Israel off the map” was born Jewish.

Earlier this morning the Daily Telegraph of London reported,

A photograph of the Iranian president holding up his identity card during elections in March 2008 clearly Ahmadenijad is Jewishshows his family has Jewish roots.

A close-up of the document reveals he was previously known as Sabourjian – a Jewish name meaning cloth weaver.

“By making anti-Israeli statements he is trying to shed any suspicions about his Jewish connections. He feels vulnerable in a radical Shia society.”

A London-based expert [Ali Nourizadeh] on Iranian Jewry said that “jian” ending to the name specifically showed the family had been practising Jews.

“He has changed his name for religious reasons, or at least his parents had,” said the Iranian-born Jew [Ali Nourizadeh] living in London. “Sabourjian is well known Jewish name in Iran.”

Now that is revealing.

For more on this article from Damien McElroy and Ahmad Vahdat of the Daily Telegraph of London click here.

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20 Responses to Ahmadinejad Had a Jewish Past

  • Maybe the Jews can take up a collection and send him some lox and bagels.

    I recall that decades ago, a leader of the American Nazi Party committed suicide when it was revealed he was half-Jewish.

    Man, bitter ex-Catholics have nothing on self- hating Jews. Former Catholics who hate the Church just want to destroy the Church, not a billion Catholics. Self-loathing Jews want to destroy the Jewish people.

  • Oh, man. Hitler comparisons in 5…4…3…2… 🙂

  • Anthony,

    I was thinking that, but I didn’t opine on it to let the story tell itself.

  • Donna V.,

    How right you are.

    To think that American Jews do their best to vilify Israel at every turn is incredible.

    Self-hating is accurate.

  • Why Hitler comparisons, Anthony? Like Hitler, Amadinejad hates Jews, but I’ve never read anything to suggest Hitler was Jewish himself.

  • Hitlers mother or father was Jewish I think, that or one branch of his grandparents were Jewish, hence the comparison of both men who exhibit their self-hate towards their Jewish past.

  • Oh, and of course, there’s the case of Bobby Fischer, fully Jewish by blood, who fervertly denied it and made blatantly anti-Semitic comments. When you consider how many chess grandmasters are Jewish (including many who taught and helped Fischer), it’s a bit mind-blogging. But then, Fischer was mad.

  • Tito, I’ve never heard that and I’ve read a far amount about the Third Reich.

  • Donna V.,

    Let me take back those comments about Hitler being part-Jewish.

    It has been alleged that he was Jewish but never proven.

  • To be fair to Hitler, IIRC he was born Catholic and quite hated the Catholic Church by his teens.

  • Folks, this type of thing produced by a British tabloid should be taken with a boulder of salt. I would love the irony if it were true, but, alas, as in the case of Hitler’s alleged Jewish ancestry, a myth that has been exploded time and again, I suspect that this is all hype and no substance.

  • Interesting. An adviser of Ahmadinejad claimed that Hitler was Jewish:

    Nothing new here however. Attempts to link Jews to the Nazis are a staple of anti-Israeli propaganada throughout the Middle East.

    In regard to the Ahmadinejad story, I’ll do some research and report back when I have something solid. I suspect that this is merely a charge thrown out be political adversaries and that it would not be possible for Ahmadinejad to get so far in Iranian politics if it were true, but I’ll reserve judgment till I have more information.

  • A prescient humor piece on the topic on July 14 by the Naked Loon:

  • I’m torn. On one hand, I want to adhere to principle, take the high road, and say that the fact that Immadinnerjacket was once Jewish is of no political consequence. It’s something for the psychologists to mull over, but otherwise a footnote in the life of this mad man. On the other hand, I’m tempted to play into the idea of a mass Jewish conspiracy and try to convince the Iranian hardliners that he’s actually a Jewish sleeper agent, and should be dealt with post haste.

  • I am sure Gina that half of Iran is laughing about this and the other half is going, in Farsi of course, “Hmmm, you know, I always sort of thought he looked Jewish!”

  • Thank you Henry K. for that piece of information.

    Though President Ahmedinejad has repeated himself twice after that incident, there’s no question that he did say he wants to erase Israel off the map through words and deeds.

  • I am not certain if Ahmedinejad is of Jewish origin or not. But the Daily Telegraph is the only paper in England that I have any reasonable amount of respect for.

    I agree with Donald that most of the British press is sensationalistic, but there are a few gems and the Daily Telegraph is one of them.

    If more information comes out to verify or to nullify this claim, I will post it.

  • I saw this posted at Hot Air:

    “Professor David Yeroshalmi, author of The Jews of Iran in the 19th century and an expert on Iranian Jewish communities, disputes the validity of this argument. “There is no such meaning for the word ’sabour’ in any of the Persian Jewish dialects, nor does it mean Jewish prayer shawl in Persian. Also, the name Sabourjian is not a well-known Jewish name,” he stated in a recent interview. In fact, Iranian Jews use the Hebrew word “tzitzit” to describe the Jewish prayer shawl. Yeroshalmi, a scholar at Tel Aviv University’s Center for Iranian Studies, also went on to dispute the article’s findings that the “-jian” ending to the name specifically showed the family had been practising Jews. “This ending is in no way sufficient to judge whether someone has a Jewish background. Many Muslim surnames have the same ending,” he stated…
    According to both Naji and Tait, Ahmadinejad’s father Ahmad was in fact a religious Shia, who taught the Quran before and after Ahmadinejad’s birth and their move to Tehran. So religious was Ahmad Sabourjian that he bought a house near a Hosseinieh, a religious club that he frequented during the holy month of Moharram to mourn the martyrdom of Imam Hossein.
    Moreover, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad’s mother is a Seyyede. This is a title given to women whose family are believed to be direct bloodline descendants of Prophet Muhammad…
    The reason that Ahmadinejad’s father changed his surname has more to do with the class struggle in Iran. When it became mandatory to adopt surnames, many people from rural areas chose names that represented their professions or that of their ancestors. This made them easily identifiable as townfolk. In many cases they changed their surnames upon moving to Tehran, in order to avoid snobbery and discrimination from residents of the capital.”

  • No matter if he is Jewish, Muslim or a left-handed cross-dressing lesbian there is still one serious concern about him:

    He’s dangerous.

Obama The Theologian

Friday, September 4, AD 2009

It’s interesting that during a Ramadan dinner at the White House President Obama mentioned that Islam is a great religion.

Since when is he qualified to make such theological statements when questions of this magnitude are above his pay grade?

Did President Obama mean how the followers of Islam subjugated the Christian lands of the Middle East, North Africa, Anatolia, the Balkans, and Spain?

Enslaved millions of black Africans in the slave trade to Europeans?

Not to mention defiling the Hagia Sophia, Saint Peter’s Basilica, and many, many more Christian shrines and churches.

President Obama you have no idea what you’re talking about.


To go to the website click here.

To download the Vortex by Michael Voris, S.T.B., on click here.

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12 Responses to Obama The Theologian

  • by Pope John Paul II in “Crossing the Threshold of Hope”

    A very different discussion, obviously, is the one that leads us to the synagogues and mosques, where those who worship the One God assemble. Yes, certainly it is a different case when we come to these great monotheistic religions, beginning with Islam. In the Declaration Nostra Aetate we read: “The Church also has a high regard for the Muslims, who worship one God, living and subsistent, merciful and omnipotent, the Creator of heaven and earth” (Nostra Aetate 3). As a result of their monotheism, believers in Allah are particularly close to us.

    I remember an event from my youth. In the convent of the Church of Saint Mark in Florence, we were looking at the frescoes by Fra Angelico. At a certain point a man joined us who, after sharing his admiration for the work of this great religious artist, immediately added: “But nothing can compare to our magnificent Muslim monotheism.” His statement did not prevent us from continuing the visit and the conversation in a friendly tone. It was on that occasion that I got a kind of first taste of the dialogue between Christianity and Islam, which we have tried to develop systematically in the post-conciliar period.

    Whoever knows the Old and New Testaments, and then reads the Koran, clearly sees the process by which it completely reduces Divine Revelation. It is impossible not to note the movement away from what God said about Himself, first in the Old Testament through the Prophets, and then finally in the New Testament through His Son. In Islam all the richness of God’s self-revelation, which constitutes the heritage of the Old and New Testaments, has definitely been set aside.

    Some of the most beautiful names in the human language are given to the God of the Koran, but He is ultimately a God outside of the world, a God who is only Majesty, never Emmanuel, God-with-us. Islam is not a religion of redemption. There is no room for the Cross and the Resurrection. Jesus is mentioned, but only as a prophet who prepares for the last prophet, Muhammad. There is also mention of Mary, His Virgin Mother, but the tragedy of redemption is completely absent. For this reason not only the theology but also the anthropology of Islam is very distant from Christianity.

    Nevertheless, the religiosity of Muslims deserves respect. It is impossible not to admire, for example, their fidelity to prayer. The image of believers in Allah who, without caring about time or place, fall to their knees and immerse themselves in prayer remains a model for all those who invoke the true God, in particular for those Christians who, having deserted their magnificent cathedrals, pray only a little or not at all.

    The Council has also called for the Church to have a dialogue with followers of the “Prophet,” and the Church has proceeded to do so. We read in Nostra Aetate: “Even if over the course of centuries Christians and Muslims have had more than a few dissensions and quarrels, this sacred Council now urges all to forget the past and to work toward mutual understanding as well as toward the preservation and promotion of social justice, moral welfare, peace, and freedom for the benefit of all mankind” (Nostra Aetate 3).

    From this point of view, as I have already mentioned, the meetings for prayer held at Assisi (especially that for peace in Bosnia, in 1993), certainly played a significant role. Also worthwhile were my meetings with the followers of Islam during my numerous apostolic trips to Africa and Asia, where sometimes, in a given country, the majority of the citizens were Muslims. Despite this, the Pope was welcomed with great hospitality and was listened to with similar graciousness.

    The trip I made to Morocco at the invitation of King Hassan II can certainly be defined as a historic event. It was not simply a courtesy visit, but an event of a truly pastoral nature. The encounter with the young people at Casablanca Stadium (1985) was unforgettable. The openness of the young people to the Pope’s words was striking when he spoke of faith in the one God. It was certainly an unprecedented event.

    Nevertheless, concrete difficulties are not lacking. In countries where fundamentalist movements come to power, human rights and the principle of religious freedom are unfortunately interpreted in a very one-sided way-religious freedom comes to mean freedom to impose on all citizens the “true religion.” In these countries the situation of Christians is sometimes terribly disturbing. Fundamentalist attitudes of this nature make reciprocal contacts very difficult. All the same, the Church remains always open to dialogue and cooperation.

  • Now, Tito, just as it is not right to say Catholicism did X, Y, and Z because of what some of its followers did, it is not right to say X, Y, and Z are from “Islam” unless you can show how it is universal Islamic teaching.

    The Fall of Constantinople is very interesting to bring up. First, we all know Catholics before Muslims sacked the city and indeed, destroyed religious relics and holy sites (though it was not Catholicism which did this). The sacking of Constantinople was a great defiling and it was Western Christians that did it. By this fact, Constantinople was weakened enough to be taken centuries later. Second, in the taking of the city, many Christians were in the army of the Turk (indeed, a great number) — we are talking about empires, not religions.

    Now saying this, it is true to say a lot of followers of Islam have done evil things, just like followers of Christ have done evil things. But let’s not use that to define Islam, just as we don’t use the abuses of the Spanish Inquisition to define Catholicism.

  • Did President Obama mean how the followers of Islam subjugated the Christian lands of the Middle East, North Africa, Anatolia, the Balkans, and Spain? Enslaved millions of black Africans in the slave trade to Europeans? Not to mention defiling the Hagia Sophia, Saint Peter’s Basilica, and many, many more Christian shrines and churches.

    I think this is an unnecessarily uncharitable reading of the President’s remarks. If President Obama had said that Christianity was a great religion, I certainly would not have understood him to be praising the Spanish Inquisition. As with Christianity, so with Islam.

    Additionally, ‘great’ has multiple meanings, for instance ‘most significant’, ‘influential’, ‘extensive in time or distance,’ which strike me as at least as plausible in this context. It seems unlikely (to me) that President Obama was praising Muslim theology, per se. Moreover, even if he was praising Muslim theology in general terms, there are certainly enough points of agreement between Islam and Christianity that this should not necessarily offend Christians; it’s not like President Obama was praising Sharia law or commenting on the divinity of Christ.

    great (gr?t)
    adj. great·er, great·est

    1. Very large in size.
    2. Larger in size than others of the same kind.
    3. Large in quantity or number: A great throng awaited us. See Synonyms at large.
    4. Extensive in time or distance: a great delay.
    5. Remarkable or outstanding in magnitude, degree, or extent: a great crisis.
    6. Of outstanding significance or importance: a great work of art.
    7. Chief or principal: the great house on the estate.
    8. Superior in quality or character; noble: “For he was great, ere fortune made him so” (John Dryden).
    9. Powerful; influential: one of the great nations of the West.
    10. Eminent; distinguished: a great leader.
    11. Grand; aristocratic.
    12. Informal Enthusiastic: a great lover of music.
    13. Informal Very skillful: great at algebra.
    14. Informal Very good; first-rate: We had a great time at the dance.
    15. Being one generation removed from the relative specified. Often used in combination: a great-granddaughter.

  • Whoops, just noticed Henry had already used the Spanish Inquisition…should have come up with another example. ‘Nobody expects…’

  • Henry K. & John H.,

    Excellent points all the way around.

    Without getting into any nitpicking which I want to avoid, President Obama would never have said anything about Islam the way Pope John Paul II has so eloquently stated.

    His was more of a political statement to the appeasement of his liberal sensibilities that all religions are the basically the same.

    Which isn’t true at all.

    His comparison of Islam to Wicca, Buddhism, and Christianity shows his lack of depth on the subject of religion.

    This coming from a man who didn’t know that Jeremiah Wright was a racist while attending his ‘church’ for 20 years.

    …I like the quotes pulled from Pope JP2. He is one of the major reasons why I am a Catholic today.

  • Catholic Anarchist,

    You are now banned from all of my postings.

    Enjoy purgatory!

  • “His was more of a political statement to the appeasement of his liberal sensibilities that all religions are the basically the same.”

    Actually that is also not what he said, and that is the problem. As the Church has consistently pointed out, we do not reject that which is true in other religions; to say that (which is what his quote from Ali is about) is not to say they are all equal.

    I thank God St Thomas Aquinas found much truth through Muslims!

  • I have to say, I think this particular broadcast went a bit too far.

    Obama’s use of the word “great” did not need to be subjected to such hair-splitting analysis.

    I certainly believe we have a right and a duty to criticize the president when he says or does something morally objectionable, but I have little respect for people who are simply looking for any reason they can find to lay into him.

  • Of course, to say what a specific Muslim does is not “Islam” is a fair statement. But then you can look to the founder and founding texts. In those texts, there is a much closer relationship between Islam and violence than between the Inquisition and Catholicism.

    But, all in all, I doubt the O was making any great theological statement on Islam – he was just being cordial. No point in antagonizing where there is no need to.

  • c matt,

    Of course, to say what a specific Muslim does is not “Islam” is a fair statement. But then you can look to the founder and founding texts. In those texts, there is a much closer relationship between Islam and violence than between the Inquisition and Catholicism.

    nailed it.

    But, all in all, I doubt the O was making any great theological statement on Islam – he was just being cordial. No point in antagonizing where there is no need to.

    No, he wasn’t making a grand theological statement, since he’s an avowed secularist, and likely an atheist at his core, how could he? He was making a value judgment, suggesting that all religions are equally good and can be used to further his agenda. WHich is why he refused to participate in the national day of prayer, but hosts a Ramadan feast in the White House. Appeasing the Islamo-fascists is in his agenda, appeasing true Christians is not.

  • Henry K.,

    We only accept what is true in other religions.

    Joe Hargrave,

    He is the president of the United States, we should expect only the best from our president. This man accomplished so much that by the age of 35 he wrote TWO memoirs!


  • I certainly believe we have a right and a duty to criticize the president when he says or does something morally objectionable, but I have little respect for people who are simply looking for any reason they can find to lay into him.

    During the previous Republican administrations, where exactly was this seemingly virtuous stand that so bravely confronts the underhanded pettiness on the part of the president’s cruel critics?

    Or is it the case that the president need be a democrat, or better yet, a Pro-abort democrat, for that matter, or simply Obama, in order to deserve this kind of just treatment and defense?

Rifqa, Islam, and the Mainstream Media

Monday, August 24, AD 2009

Rifqa BaryYou may have heard by now of the case of Rifqa Bary who fled her Ohio home to Florida to escape her father’s grasp.  The reason being is that she converted to Christianity and her family are extremist Muslims.  Meaning that she will be put to death for being a kafir, or apostasizing from Islam.  This is in line with most mainstream Islamic jurisprudence (see the Koran verses such as 2:217 and 4:89) that calls for the death of a convert away from Islam.

Andrew Bostom of the American Thinker wrote an excellent piece concerning Rifqa Bary:

Rifqa Bary faces death for her apostasy from Islam, while the media ignores the solid religious and institutional grounding for the practice.

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2 Responses to Rifqa, Islam, and the Mainstream Media

  • We need to get people to stop believing in the Quran and the Hadiths; they aren’t the word of God and they are leading people astray as to what He requires from them. Islam as a religion needs to be dismantled.

    God Bless,


    September 1st is the fifth anniversary of the almost forgotten Beslan atrocity. The full story was never published at the time.

    In particular, the Islamic involvement was censored. The MSM never reported the child-rapes or other typically Islamic aspects, even though the children were being knifed to shouts of ‘Allah Akhbar’.

    The full uncensored story can be found in the links under ‘BESLAN – Child rape, torture and ritual murder’ at The Religion of Peace™ Subject Index

    Could all bloggers please help to spread the truth about this massacre to warn the public of the truly Satanic vileness of this predatory murder-cult.

Iran: Two Former Presidents Speak Out

Tuesday, July 21, AD 2009

Iran July 17, 2009

Many recent developments in Iran, all of them bad for the Iranian regime of Ahmadinejad and Supreme Leader, with apologies to Fearless Leader of the Rocky and Bullwinkle Show, Khamenei.  Huge demonstrations rocked Iran on Friday with crowd estimates ranging from 100,000 to over a million in Tehran.    Repression, brutal as it has been, is simply not stopping the Resistance from taking to the streets once a week.

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6 Responses to Prayers requested for Bowe R. Bergdahl

  • Dear Lord, may he be rescued and returned to safety.

  • We are praying for your safe return home. The divine spirit is with you at this time. You are loved, cared for, and will continued to be flooded with the divine intervention.

  • Prayers on the way.

  • Bowe, when you come home, know that you were prayed for by so many people. You are in my thoughts and prayers constantly and as an American who also loves this country i want nothing more than to see you safely back home. I have prayed to St. Joseph for the good Lord to give you peace of mind. I have also prayed that Jesus would soften these terrorists hearts so they will release you and let you go home. Know that the whole nation loves you and we are behind you. God Bless You!!!!

  • God please watch over Pfc. Bowe R. Bergdahl and protect him from harm. Please lay your hand upon him and bring him home to Idaho safely and whole in body and mind. Please help his family find courage through your word.

  • Our Father who art in heaven, I lift up Bowe to You. Bless him, Lord. Be with him. And, please, bring him home unharmed. I ask this in Your precious son’s name, Jesus.