Her God-Ordained Identity

A lovely story coming our way from ABC News:

Christian School Bans Tomboy for ‘Direction She’s Heading’

Well, now. Here’s a story that just confirms all of the biases I have about good ol’ down south bible schools.

Sunny wasn’t girly enough for Timberlake Christian School, so they wrote a concerned letter to her guardians and told her that she wouldn’t be allowed back in school in the fall unless she girl-ified her attitude. Wouldn’t want any of that tomboyishness or assertiveness confusing her schoolmates and teachers now, would we?

Of course, Timberlake says NO NO NO there are deeper problems beyond the length of Sunny’s hair. Yup. I’m betting those problems have to do with Sunny carving out her own identify and not conforming to the godilicious cardboard cutout that her administrators would like to see.

It’s gratifying to see that Sunny’s grandparents removed Sunny from Timberlake and enrolled her in public school. May she have better times there.

h/t to Mary B. for providing the link to this story.

 

Clinic Escorting Tales

Last Saturday was the first time that I’ve escorted during the current round of 40 Days For Life (Imma start shortening that to 40DfL). As the name might indicate, this is an anti-abortion event that spans Forty. Loooooong. Days. It was created to help prolife groups energize their ranks. 40DfL activities are hosted by local groups, and each group has different events, but they typically revolve around holding prayer vigils, fasting, harassing patients and companions outside of clinics that provide abortions, and smiling in a creepy, brainwashed way at the escorts and clients while inviting us to “just talk for a moment”.

I’ve escorted during 40DfL and it’s always been a bit of a circus. But we get through it.

40DfL snuck up on me this time. Me, Jailawrites and Pixelsnake (twitter handles used for privacy) showed up for the 7am shift on Saturday and were met by the usual suspects. Pleasantries were exchanged (“How many babies are on death row today?” from her, and quiet chatting amongst ourselves as we ignored her) and we did the clinic escort thing until our shift was over at 8:30am. There were no other escorts this morning and only seven protesters. A normal Saturday morning for all involved.

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Savita Halappanavar’s Death

On several occasions I have been asked to explain my views on the intersection of atheism and reproductive freedom. Well here it is, isn’t it? From BBC News, the story of 31 year-old Savita Halappanavar, who died in Ireland on Sunday due to complications of pregnancy:

“On the Saturday night everything changed, she started experiencing back pain so we called into the hospital, the university hospital.”

He said she continued to experience pain and asked a consultant if she could be induced.

“They said unfortunately she can’t because it’s a Catholic country,” Mr Halappanavar said.

“Savita said to her she is not Catholic, she is Hindu, and why impose the law on her.

“But she said ‘I’m sorry, unfortunately it’s a Catholic country’ and it’s the law that they can’t abort when the foetus is live.”

This was a woman, and a family, and medical professionals who knew that aborting the pregnancy was the safest, sanest medical decision. This hospital stood by as Savita Halappanavar died slowly and painfully of septicemia. They refused to treat Savita as her her husband, Praveen Halappanavar, watched helplessly as her organs shut down one after another.

Because it’s a Catholic country.

According to the article, several investigations by different groups are underway.

UPDATE: There are several hashtags on Twitter that are following activism around Savita’s case: #Savita #RIPSavita. Here is a legislative action website. A protest is taking place tonight. A Candlelight Vigil is being held in Galway this weekend.

Crazy Faith, Adoption and Zombies

Here are a couple of odd signs that have caught my attention over the past couple of days:

Seen on the back of a car in a parking lot.

Short version: No arguments here.

Deeper version: I think this might be a reference to Susan William Smith’s Crazy Faith: Ordinary People, Extraordinary Lives. According to one of the reviewers, the book “challenges ordinary people to let God use them for impossible tasks. Such submission requires “crazy faith,” knowing God will bring success even when the task seems impractical and illogical.”

*blink blink*

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Glasses to Blur Out the Wimminz

Or alternatively, Fuzzy Glasses, Fuzzy Logic.

It’s August and as far as I know there’s only one April Fool’s Day every year. Right?

RIGHT?

I went to Google to see if this “Associated Press” article that I saw on Twitter was real (Ohhhh… you say you’re <air quotes>Associated Press</air quotes> Sure ya are. Got ID?), and found that the story is being carried by several other news sources including the Washington Post, HuffPo, and about a kazillion bajillion blogs. So here it goes:

What do you do if you’re a man who is forbidden by his religious doctrine from having contact [edited per comment 3] with the majority of women in this world? Well, you start by making women invisible in your society. That makes it totes easy for you, and you’re the man so why shouldn’t life be easy for you? So you pressure your women to dress ultra-modestly and forbid them to interact with you; that goes a long way toward your goal. But you know… you can still see them.

Hmmm…

What if a button breaks and you catch a glimpse of a lady’s neck? Or an ankle – gasp! And what if she purposely tries to tempt you by…oh I don’t know…by letting a stray hair slip from her head covering? You have to trust the women to follow your clothing rules so that you’re not tempted into lusting after them! *groan* And let’s not even get started on the women outside of your community who don’t have to follow your rules. You have absolutely no control over this situation!

But wait – you do!

Take some regular glasses and put stickers over the lenses. No not just any stickers – that would be silly. You have to buy special fuzzy stickers that allow you about 10 feet of clear vision, and beyond 10 feet everything fuzzes out – including your repressed sexual desire!

Problem solved!

So that takes care of that. Except… for those times when you need to cross busy roads or read street signs or – nahhhhh. You’ll be fine. And secure from unexpected lust that’s totally not your fault or responsibility! Everybody wins!

Right?

RIGHT?

God Has The Worst Plans

My speculation for what is currently going through George Zimmerman’s head: “Oh crap. So I freaked out and killed a defenseless kid, And they’re not falling for the “self-defense” thing. I can’t say I killed him because he was black…that’s not popular. Shitshitshit… WAIT! I GOT IT!”

“It’s God’s plan” is a non-answer, a non-explanation, a non-defense. It’s a refusal to answer questions. It’s a panicked, Hail Mary pass because George Zimmerman can’t explain his actions without admitting that he killed a teenager for no good reason.  And if that’s what he’s bringing to trial, my money is on a loooooooong jail sentence.

Atheists like to say that we can be good without gods. Here’s an(other) example of a believer being bad with gods. Belief in a god confers no automatic moral rectitude* on person. Belief in a god doesn’t make someone a good person, or mean that that their bad actions are forgiveable. Thanks for the reminder, George Zimmerman.

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*Is “moral rectitude” redundant?  By definition it is, but would the sentence make sense if I had said “Belief in a god confers no automatic rectitude?”