Tagged: Religion

The Filibuster

Tim Pawlenty is out of the race and Rick Perry is in.  Bachmann wins the straw poll but is still bat-sh*t insane.  If the Republican primary is a pennant race, who’s your horse?

Paul
Annandale, MI
___________________________________

Oh boy.

Metaphors are my friends, metaphors are my friends, metaphors are my friends.

If the Republican primary is a pennant race, then it must be in the Arena Football League because I am finding it quite difficult taking any of them seriously.

Michele Bachmann?  Um… no.

Rick Perry?  Um… also no.

Please note my severe reluctance to support any candidate who harbors a deep relationship with imaginary friends who tend to be bipolar, judgmental, homophobe racists.

Rick Santorum?  Noooo.

Mitt Romney?  Double noooo.  Though I am still waiting for his endorsement of the Mormon Underwear website.

Newt Gingrich?  Yikes!  Now we’re really gettin’ into the thick of crazy!

Jimmy McMillan?  Okay, now we’ve reached the bottom.

Thad McCotter?  Cool name.  Boring everything else.

Sorry, Paul… ya see, unlike picking an MLB winner, crawling through this web of same-ole-same-ole GOP crazies is a bit difficult.  There is no Philadelphia Phillies lights-out candidate.  There is no Yankee flyer.  There is no Red Sox contender.

No.

But, wait… there is… hmm… there is hope.  And no, I’m not talking about the empty promise sounding “hope” dished out ad nauseum by the Obama campaign to dupe intellectual lefties like myself during the ’08 race.  No.  Staying here, within the “Republican” party, there is… there is another.

But before I can declare my allegiance, I need to think on it.  I need to think on it very, very carefully.  While I do so, remember not to hate me (because I’m right) and please enjoy this informational video thoughtfully prepared by the RSBS interns:


To be continued…

Jeff

**Have a topic you want to see us Filibuster?  Interested to know why Mr. Krause still can’t believe it’s not butter?  Send us your Filibuster questions by emailing kraulung@gmail.com or by commenting below.

What’s So Good About Good Friday?

I hate Easter.  The candy sucks.  It’s all about some dead guy.  And the worst part is that it’s on a Sunday so I don’t even get a day off of work.  At least Columbus and MLK get me a freebie.

As bad as Easter may be, Good Friday is even worse.  Although the candy sucks on Easter, at least there is candy.  What do you get for Good Friday?  Nothing.  There’s still school, there’s still work, there are no presents and if that wasn’t bad enough, teams are forced to reshuffle their schedules.  Why, just two short years ago the entire Detroit Tigers franchise almost got sentenced to an eternity in hell for playing their home opener on Good Friday.

Luckily 2011 is the year of revolt and I say we continue where the Egyptians and Tunisians left off.  Leave work early, get drunk, hunt down the Easter bunny and make rabbit stew.  This year, let’s actually make it a Good Friday.

-A

Orthodoxy, Zombies and Baseball

Jeff_2009.jpgWhen Jeff and I discuss our views on the past, present and future of baseball, we often disagree but rarely allow the dissent to become mean-spirited.  Sure, there may be the occasional ad hominem attack comparing the other person to Neville Chamberlain but it’s all in good fun.  Baseball, like most aspects of life, evolves over time and as choices get made, we see how those choices affect the game and debate the effects.

What happens when your debate can never be settled, though?  For instance, what happens when the the debate itself is grounded in faith and a belief that things work one way or another in the afterlife?  I’m not talking about zombies here, because we (and others) have already made preparations for that.  If and when the zombie apocalypse comes, the fact of whether or not we were ready will be easily observable.

Instead, I’m talking once again about religion and what happens when someone challenges the orthodoxy.  For Galileo, it meant facing the Inquisition.  For Martin Luther, it meant excommunication.  For Rob Bell, no one knows as of yet.  That doesn’t mean the religious establishment hasn’t automatically turned their guns on him, though.

For me, the argument is moot since I don’t believe in god.  But the fact that Mr. Bell has decided to address the sticky question of what happens to those who don’t believe in the christian god but also never heard about him, exhibits a little less disingenuous thought than one commonly expects from the hardcore evangelicals.  It would be nice if my coauthor had similar intestinal fortitude when considering baseball orthodoxy.

-A

As American as A–holes

american_as_apple_pie.jpgAt RSBS, we’re critical of the things that go on around us.  We’re critical of the things going on in baseball (especially Bud Selig’s machinations and the continued but completely baffling employment of Kyle Farnsworth), we’re critical of events in the world at large and we’re critical of the turn our country has taken in the past couple years.  But make no mistake, just because we’re critical doesn’t mean we love our country any less.

I spend a lot of my time outside the US and each time I come back, I’m reminded of how great it is.  In fact, I don’t think you can truly appreciate the US until you’ve spent some time outside.  One of the things that strikes me each time I return is how accepting we are.  I have never visited another country where people of all different religions, ethnicity, socio-economic class and so on and so forth live next to each other, work with each other and generally get along with each other. 

But recently I’ve begun to wonder what’s going on.  For a country that accepts so many different people and allows these people to express themselves in so many different ways (even when it’s tasteless and abominable), why have we all of a sudden decided to focus so much hatred on one group?  Take a look:

And it would be easy to say that this is just one isolated incident but it isn’t.  As I’ve said before, the people who blow themselves up or go on some ridiculous rampage represent Islam about as much as Timothy McVeigh represents Christianity.  Which is to say that they don’t.  I’m not a religious person myself but the Constitution, the document many of these people claim as their justification, codifies the right of any person to worship as they will.  You don’t have to like that but you can be civil about it.  Civil doesn’t mean picketing and ruining their events, for instance.  Do they show up and drink all your wine during mass or or run around naked during your Knights of Columbus dinner?

Anyway, I just wanted to make sure I put that out there.  The USA is a great country.  In my opinion, it’s the greatest country in the history of the world.  It would be nice if these douchenozzles could stop attempting to prove otherwise.

-A

Note:  Apparently the video has been taken down due to a copyright claim by George Collins.  We’ll keep looking for a new version so you can see it.  In the meantime, here’s a brief background on what happens in the video.

God is Screwing With Us

The events of this past holiday weekend finally confirmed a suspicion I had harbored for a while.  God is screwing with us.

Oh yes, I know this is blasphemy.  And to make a statement like this during the advent just adds fuel to the bonfires already being stoked for heretics like myself.  But it doesn’t make it any less true.  Look at the facts.

Fact #1:
On Saturday Michigan lost to The Ohio State University for the seventh time in a row.  And it wasn’t even close.  Consecutive defeats would be bad.  Four in a row is unimaginable.  But seven straight times?  That’s ludicrous.  Terrelle Pryor will graduate (or at least leave OSU) never having known the stinging scorn of the Ohio State fans because of his performance in a loss to the Maize and Blue.  Sure, the Tigers may have picked up Victor Martinez and stolen a little bit of Ohio’s soul in the process.  But seven straight losses?  By comparison, that almost makes this palatable:

Fact #2:
No god that actually liked us would let Leslie Nielsen die on Thanksgiving weekend.  That’s not funny.  That’s just mean.  Sure, Nielsen may not have done anything recently but his work with OJ in the Naked Gun movies made him a legend.  To die at this point instead of at the very capable hand of Mr. Simpson just seems cruel.

Fact #3:
This all leads us to the final and indisputable fact which proves without question that god is screwing with us.  He purposely messed up an NFL game yesterday.  Yeah, really.  It would be easy to believe that Johnson just plain and simple dropped the ball.  Just like it would be easy to believe that a 14-year old virgin gave birth to a kid a couple millennium ago.  But the truth is, it’s just god screwing with us.

Anyway, get out there and live it up this week.  Have fun, go crazy, don’t stop.  And if something does go wrong, just remember that it’s probably god screwing with you.

-A

The Attention They Don’t Deserve

carl_paladino.jpg

In all the furor that erupted over certain remarks the editors of RSBS made concerning the Evil Empire in the past couple weeks, other remarks made by public figures missed getting the attention they deserve.

For instance, the Republican candidate for governor of New York, Carl Paladino, ignited a not-so-small firestorm when he told a gathering that “I just think my children and your children would be much better off and
much more successful getting married and raising a family, and I don’t
want them brainwashed into thinking that homosexuality is an equally
valid and successful option — it isn’t.”  Granted, this wasn’t quite as incendiary as what was omitted from the speech but it didn’t do much to help his popularity.  It also didn’t help that the only people who came to his defense were a whacky rabbi and Ann Coulter.  Not exactly expanding his base with those two.

Meanwhile in Belgium, he head of the country’s Catholic church described AIDS as “a sort of inherent justice.”  Really guy?  That line of argument didn’t play well for Falwell after 9/11 and it’s not like it has gotten any better since then:

You know what?  I think I’d rather just go back to talking about the Yankees.  At least there you can chalk up the crazy to fandom and blame any absence of logic on the eight dollar beers.  This is just sad.

-A

Real Men Read the Constitution

constitution.jpgWhether you like him or not, whether you agree with him or not, one thing can definitely be said about our President.  He has some cojones.  I don’t mean this in the pejorative sense, as in, “Where he does he get off saying that?”  No, I mean nothing but respect.  His stances may not always be popular but at least they reflect a sense of integrity and a fundamental understanding of the law.

Let’s start with sports.  The President is a White Sox fan and even though I don’t like the White Sox, I respect him for sticking by his guns.  When he showed up at Nationals Park to see the Sox during interleague play, he didn’t throw on the home team cap.  He wore a Sox cap, same as opening day.  In fact, one of my many issues with Bill Richardson during the primary campaign was his claim that he liked both the Red Sox and Yankees.  We all know that’s not possible.  Baseball law says so.  There’s none of that tomfoolery with Obama.

And when you get into what are often referred to as more “substantive” issues, Obama also rejects tomfoolery.  Like health care or “Don’t ask, Don’t tell.”  People may not like his stands but what he does is based on a firm understanding of the Constitution.

Which is why I’m also proud of the President’s stand on this ridiculous Ground Zero mosque kerfuffle.  Yes, I understand that the men who crashed those planes into the WTC claimed to be Muslim.  Timothy McVeigh claimed to be Christian.  Does that mean no churches should be built near where the Oklahoma City Federal Building stood?

You can argue that the President may not have chosen the best time to weigh in on the controversy.  But what you can’t argue is that the United States is a country built on the rule of law, the foundation of that law being the Constitution.  When the Constitution grants the freedom of religion, that’s not just the freedom to be Christian.  It’s the freedom to follow any religion or even no religion at all. 

Sometimes this freedom isn’t pretty, like when you’re dealing with Hare Krishnas at the airport or Moonies milling about in Central Park.  But it’s also the reason your mom and sisters don’t have to shave their heads and why we men don’t get in trouble for trimming our beards.  It’s sad that a public figure being willing to say this requires cojones.

-A