Poll on the appropriate way to decorate a Christmas tree


The Gay Straight Alliance at Washington & Jefferson College has put up a tree* decorated with condoms as part of a campaign to increase HIV-AIDS awareness. The Young Republicans (can we please change their name? I think “Young Assholes” would be more accurate) are irate and are demanding that it be taken down, because it’s “a direct attack on Christianity and borderline obscene”. They’re also joining forces with the Christian Student Association and the Newman Club to try and get it removed.

And of course there’s an online poll.

Should the college force the club to remove the condom tree?

Absolutely. It’s offensive! 57.04%

Nope. Free speech! 36.61%

I’m in the middle on this one. 6.35%

Special bonus!The poll is on the Glenn Beck site, The Blaze, and we all know how much they love it when we crash their polls!

*Missing information: There is no word on whether the Gay Straight Alliance calls it a “Christmas tree”, a “holiday tree”, or a “phallic tribute to raging orgiastic hedonism tree”.

Comments

  1. Dhorvath, OM says

    Yeah, I really missed having an option to vote for the “this is better than glass baubles” PTROH tree.

  2. MikeMa says

    Considering is seems to be part of an AIDS awareness program, condoms are almost required.

    I love burning the blaze.

  3. Ouabache says

    This is “a direct attack on Christianity”? Oh yeah, I keep forgetting that (some) Christians are pro-AIDS.

  4. robro says

    yet another example of Christian’s appropriating a religious artifact. condoms are perfect ornaments for the Pagan Tree.

    some years ago at Christmas, my son had some friends over for his birthday overnight. my wife was decorating the tree and asked one of the boys if he would like to help. “Oh no, we don’t celebrate Christmas at my house. We’re Jewish, you know.” my wife responded, “Oh, that’s OK, it’s a pagan ritual anyway.” Sadly, the young fellow still didn’t get it.

  5. you_monster says

    Why did I do it? I read through the first 30 comments or so at teh Blaze. Fucking bigots all of them. So much hatred. I feel unclean now.

  6. evilDoug says

    Perhaps if the GSA referred to the condoms as “French letters” the junior GOPers would calm down.

  7. pacomius says

    Students at Washington & Jefferson College in Washington, Pennsylvania, are reportedly coming together to protest…

    An interesting way to commence the article, all things considered

  8. says

    It’s pretty obviously a Saturnalia tree (even though some of my Christian acquaintances think that decorated evergreen trees have been intimately associated with Christ’s birth for five or six thousand years — you know, since Creation).

  9. Beatrice, anormalement indécente says

    In addition to finding the tree offensive, Habursky also voiced concern over elementary school children who he says come to the campus and may actually walk through the area where the tree is located. “We are trying to have the tours rerouted,” he explained. “I don’t know what they were thinking about this,” he continued.

    Oh noes! Those poor innocent children might be forever set on the road of depravity after a mere sight of a condom.

  10. killertapir says

    Okay, I could sort of see them arguing that putting condoms on a cross or comically oversized Bible would be an attack on Christianity. I wouldn’t have agreed, but at least I’d have seen where they were coming from. Unless there are some passages of the Bible I completely forgot about that detailed Jesus’ failed attempts to put the Christmas lights on the tree and has the 12 disciples arguing over who gets to place the star…I don’t have a clue.

  11. anteprepro says

    The Young Republicans (can we please change their name? I think “Young Assholes” would be more accurate)

    I would think that you, PZ, of all people would know that “Republican” is a far better description of this kind of behavior than something as mild as “Asshole” could ever dream of being.

  12. Beatrice, anormalement indécente says

    you_monster,
    Yeah, I read the comments too. I’m thinking about scrubbing my brain with some bleach.

  13. Don Quijote says

    Will nobody thnk of those poor kids going around the supermarket where there are, you know, condoms on open display. I mean, these poor little kids are probably *gasp* Catholics.

  14. captainahags says

    Just out of curiosity, are they still in the wrappers, or out? Not that it makes any difference other than aesthetics.

  15. jayarrrr says

    But, aren’t some of their favourite songs stuff like:
    “Oh COME all Ye Faithful”
    “Santa Claus is COMING to Town”
    And many, many more…

  16. says

    Cemerius: The open condom on the top is OVER the top!!

    The comment at The Blaze by dim-bulb Cemerius is my favorite. It works both as a sly literal comment and as an expression of idiotic outrage. But Cemerius ruined it by unambiguously continuing:

    I hate when groups hide behind the ”1st Amendment of Free Speech”

    Cemerius doesn’t see any irony in his freedom to express his dismay at freedom of expression.

  17. joed says

    i went to the beck site and voted. i ended up reading a few of the comments there. i wasn’t surprised but i was saddened by the hate-filled bleakness of the comments.
    basically, some of the commenters are seeing their world, their culture and, i suppose, their reality collapse because homosexual humans attached condoms to a tree at christmas time.
    if it would do any good i would tell them to lighten up, there are real problems on this planet.

  18. Beatrice, anormalement indécente says

    Just out of curiosity, are they still in the wrappers, or out? Not that it makes any difference other than aesthetics.

    From the photos in the linked article, it seem there is an open condom on the top, and wrapped ones hanging from the branches.
    There is a little message under the tree that says : AIDS awareness! Free condoms! Take one!

  19. benjaminhamilton says

    Yeah…HIV/AIDS Awareness is important, I agree. But really? A holiday tree? To me it just seems provoking for provoking’s sake. It’s almost like being “Jesus Blocked”: Have you heard about Jesus? But substitute condoms. Totally ruins a party. I don’t know about your holiday parties but mine don’t involve sex or sexual suggestion….maybe I”m missing out.

  20. Brother Ogvorbis, OM, Demoted says

    I voted, “Nope, free speech,” but then, what do I know? I grew up in a family that put some strange things on the Christmas Tree (weak Christians (Unitarians) that we were (still are, for my parents)): painted wine corks from the first year my parents were married; some guitar picks; depression-glass ornaments; a miniature cowhide that read “Genuine Leather” off of a present; a 1/72 F4U Corsair; all kind of weird stuff that I suspect would freak out the whole “You have to do everything exactly the right way” crowd of assholes.

    Good tree. And if it prevents one infection, it is worth it. Acutally, even if it doesn’t prevent one infection it is still worth it.

  21. Aquaria says

    I don’t know why the christards are getting upset. It’s not in silver or gold, after all!

    Jeremiah 10:3-4:

    For the customs of the people are vain: for one cutteth a tree out of the forest, the work of the hands of the workman, with the axe. They deck it with silver and with gold; they fasten it with nails and with hammers, that it move not.

    Everytime I see the part about move not, I want to say, “Uh, Jer–dude–trees aren’t normally supposed to move.”

  22. Brother Ogvorbis, OM, Demoted says

    To me it just seems provoking for provoking’s sake.

    Yeah, because using a Christmas Tree (or holiday tree, or whatever you want to call it) is always wrong, right? After all, the Christers would never do that, would they?

    (off of my now-defunct blog just because I know that is where the graphic is)

  23. Aquaria says

    Yeah…HIV/AIDS Awareness is important, I agree. But really? A holiday tree?

    Is there ever a bad time to try to convince people to practice safe sex?

  24. says

    Thank you for voting!
    Absolutely. It’s offensive! 23.63% (1,488 votes)
    Nope. Free speech! 73.56% (4,633 votes)
    I’m in the middle on this one. 2.81% (177 votes)

    Let’s keep it going!

  25. 'Tis Himself, OM says

    Yeah…HIV/AIDS Awareness is important, I agree. But…

    Why is it that every statement where the second sentence starts with the word “but” is basically someone whining about impropriety, irreverence, unseemliness, or suchlike solecisms?

    benjaminhamilton, your concern is noted.

  26. you_monster says

    Yeah…HIV/AIDS Awareness is important, I agree. But really? A holiday tree?

    Yes, HIV/AIDS awareness is important. Far more important than xians’ mistaken belief that their beliefs cannot be mocked. Not that this is even happening here. Decorating a xmas tree with condoms is not directly mocking xian belief. Here, this is an example of mocking xian belief: The idea of an all powerful creator giving birth to itself so that it can sacrifice itself to appease itself is utterly moronic and you either have to be indoctrinated or obscenely gullible to believe it.

    To me it just seems provoking for provoking’s sake.

    It’s not provoking just for provoking’s sake. it is for AIDS awareness (and general STI prevention). You know, like the sign sitting below the tree says. Should be obvious.

    I don’t know about your holiday parties but mine don’t involve sex or sexual suggestion….maybe I”m missing out.

    It is a free condom giveaway, with a xmas theme/twist. You know, even sex-positive and pro-safe-sex atheist gays can celebrate xmas. This isn’t some secret plot by the gay community to subliminally make “sexual suggestions”.

  27. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    maybe I”m missing out.

    Yep, you don’t understand freedom of religion also means freedom from religion, and that free speech includes speech and displays you find offensive. All written into our constitution.

  28. captainahags says

    From the photos in the linked article, it seem there is an open condom on the top, and wrapped ones hanging from the branches.
    There is a little message under the tree that says : AIDS awareness! Free condoms! Take one!

    Thanks for the clarification.

  29. benjaminhamilton says

    Wow..wow.wow…stop!…. I suggested putting condoms on a holiday tree might be in bad taste…that’s it. Never did I suggest that HIV/AIDS awareness itself was bad….I do not. And I’m a godless person just like you all. Still, the condom on the tree does seem obnoxious.

  30. Sastra says

    I was a little concerned at first that there were actual penises inside the condoms hanging on the tree, but a glance at the photo on the linked page put my fears at rest. Whether they were live penises or dead ones, I think that would have been a bit disturbing. At least, yes, I would then re-route the schoolchildren were it up to me.

    As it is, I don’t understand the complaint.

  31. ladydreamgirl says

    I must say I am disappointed at their choice of topper. Couldn’t they have found a brightly colored condom, or possibly a glow in the dark one, you know something a bit more festive than plain uncolored latex.

  32. zxcier says

    FYI if you log in with the vain hope of countering some of the bigotry, be sure to use a throwaway password since they email it to you in plaintext.

  33. says

    I like the way the Beck website prepped voters for the poll by ending their essay with a question about allowing any kind of holiday tree decor “no matter how offensive.”

    See what they did there? They slyly introduced a slippery slope argument right at the end, as in “it could be worse, we could be subjected to even more offensive trees!”

    First of all, the condom tree is not offensive to many people.

    To those that find it offensive, don’t look. Cover your delicate eyes.

    Secondly, let’s think of some even more offensive tree decor. Because that’s what the Beckians obviously want us to do.

  34. janine says

    Just think of all those children who grew up in the Nineties and got screwed up because of Left Eye Lopes condom glasses.

    Also, there should be dental dams on the tree.

  35. you_monster says

    Wow..wow.wow…stop!…. I suggested putting condoms on a holiday tree might be in bad taste…that’s it. Never did I suggest that HIV/AIDS awareness itself was bad….I do not. And I’m a godless person just like you all. Still, the condom on the tree does seem obnoxious.

    I don’t care if you are also an atheist. I don’t accept that decorating a tree with condoms to promote aids awareness is in bad taste. Even if it is, boo fucking hoo. Go clutch your pearls and be happy knowing that you are not rude like those dang aids-awareness advocates.

    Still, the condom on the tree does seem obnoxious.

    You can’t tell the people reacting to your comments to stop and then say shit like this. Explain yourself. Why is it obnoxious. Spell it out for me, because i don’t see it as such.

  36. Brother Ogvorbis, OM, Demoted says

    I suggested putting condoms on a holiday tree might be in bad taste

    Is it in bad taste because it ‘desecrates’ a Christian (well, pagan) religious symbol? Is it in bad taste because STD awareness should not even enter one’s mind when the holidays are here (never mind the increased alcohol consumption of the season)? Is it in bad taste because if overtly suggests that sexual relations may happen during the holidays (and it is better to be safe than sorry)?

    There are many things that I consider in bad taste, even if I just restrict myself to the religious realm. I consider it in bad taste to wear a Roman execution device on a chain around the neck. I consider it in bad taste to thank gods for the action performed by publicly supported (or paid) and highly trained rescue workers. I consider it in bad taste to slap ‘Jesus Saves’ on a car. And that doesn’t even get into the really egregious idiocy of religion which would deny contraception to women and then tell them that abortions are a sin. Or the myriad other ways that Christianity fucks with people’s lives on a daily basis by cherry-picking a 1,600 to 3,000 year old book of mythology.

    So this group decides to use a pagan fertility symbol which has been usurped by modern Christianity to promote safe sex. I still fail to see how this is in bad taste. Can you explain it to me (without telling me that it offends Christians)?

  37. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    Still, the condom on the tree does seem obnoxious.

    Assertion without evidence or reasoning. WHY? It gets to the point of why they did it.

  38. Randomfactor says

    And lo, the three wise men arrived, bearing gifts of Cuervo Gold, Astroglide and ribbed Trojans…and the Babe removed her swaddling clothes, and they laid her in a manger.

    (Apparently the original text has gotten somewhat garbled over the years.)

  39. benjaminhamilton says

    “Yep, you don’t understand freedom of religion also means freedom from religion, and that free speech includes speech and displays you find offensive. All written into our constitution.”

    The fuck I don’t. YOU don’t know anything about me. And I stand by my statement. It’s provoking for provoking’s sake, It’s obnoxious. That’s it. Am I permitted to express my opinion or not? Probably not. Dissenting opinion is not really permitted in these parts, huh?

  40. raven says

    “a direct attack on Christianity and borderline obscene”.

    I don’t see how. A decorated year end tree isn’t necessarily xian. In fact, they stole it from the Pagans. Holiday trees are perfectly acceptable most places.

    What is obscene about HIV/AIDS awareness? It’s obscene that people get this virus and sometimes die of it. And what is obscene about a condom?

    This is just another in the endless excuses for xians to whine. We are getting sick and tired of them whining about everything. And oh yeah, Happy Holidays!!! Take that whiners.

  41. janine says

    YOU don’t know anything about me.

    No, none of us do. We can only go by your words. And as it stands, you seem like the type who thinks that one should not offend the sensibilities of the faithful.

    But the simple fact that we exist and life and do without their faith is offensive enough as it is. This tree just gives them an excuse to whine. If it is not this, it is something else.

  42. 'Tis Himself, OM says

    I suggested putting condoms on a holiday tree might be in bad taste…that’s it.

    Your concern is noted!

  43. Brother Ogvorbis, OM, Demoted says

    Dissenting opinion is not really permitted in these parts, huh?

    Dissenting opinions are welcome here but, if you are going to make a categorical statement, you really do need to back it up or explain how you arrived at that conclusion. So, seriously, why, other than ‘it pisses of Christians’, is it in bad taste or obnoxious?

  44. janine says

    ‘Tis, you forgot to state that it has been printed out and placed in the proper receptacle.

  45. Beatrice, anormalement indécente says

    It’s provoking for provoking’s sake, It’s obnoxious.

    You claim that their (only) intent was provocation. You got any proof for that assertion? After all, you don’t know them [people who decorated the tree].

  46. 'Tis Himself, OM says

    And I stand by my statement. It’s provoking for provoking’s sake, It’s obnoxious. That’s it.

    AIDS awareness is not obnoxious. Condoms are not obnoxious. What is obnoxious is whining that AIDS awareness and condoms are obnoxious.

    <blockquote? Am I permitted to express my opinion or not? Probably not. Dissenting opinion is not really permitted in these parts, huh?

    You can express any opinion you want. Just like the rest of us can express our opinions that your opinion is shit and why it’s shit. This opinion expressing is a two-way street. You express an opinion and we express opinions. Just because our opinion is that your opinion is fucked up doesn’t mean you don’t get to express your fucked up opinion.

  47. raven says

    troll:

    It’s provoking for provoking’s sake, It’s obnoxious.

    It’s neither. I find in slightly amusing and clever but otherwise innocuous. The goal of raising HIV/AIDS awareness is laudable and is responsible for the HIV epidemic peaking 14 years ago.

    You are merely expressing your personal opinions which seem to be based on some sort of hangups. Where is the rock you live under located, Mississippi behind the Baptist church?

    That’s it. Am I permitted to express my opinion or not? Probably not. Dissenting opinion is not really permitted in these parts, huh?

    Sure. You just did express your opinion. Seeing condoms in square packages on a tree makes you go bug eyed psycho. Sounds like you have problems.

    We are free to express our opinions too. You are an idiot, a troll, and have some sort of mental problem involving small square packages containing banana shaped latex medical devices.

    PS If a tree like that bothers you there is a simple solution. Don’t look at it.

  48. Lycanthrope says

    benjaminhamilton:

    It’s not “provoking for provoking’s sake”. It’s a safe-sex awareness campaign that has the side effect of provoking people who get uptight about sex and/or Christmas. And look, it’s attracting attention! People are AWARE of it! Mission accomplished.

  49. you_monster says

    It’s provoking for provoking’s sake, It’s obnoxious. That’s it. Am I permitted to express my opinion or not?

    You are certainly permitted to assert your opinion. Just as I am to permitted to express my opinion that what your saying is stupid. We have gone over this, it is not provoking for provoking’s sake. The purpose is to raise AIDS awareness. Provoking for provocation’s sake is obnoxious. That is a form of trolling, acting only to get a raise out of people. If what you are doing offends people, it doesn’t necessarily mean you are doing it for the sake of offending people. The purpose behind the condom xmas tree is explicitly stated, in writing, right next to the tree. It is to raise AIDS awareness. Understand? Do not suggest it is provoking for provoking’s sake unless you can back that up. Or go on to continue suggesting it and be ready to accept the valid criticism that you are thick.

    If you think you have a right to express your opinions without the possibility of getting criticized for them, then you are wrong. Express all you want, I shall do the same.

  50. Rey Fox says

    Dissenting opinion is not really permitted in these parts, huh?

    Hey, I just thought of something else that offends me: Whiny idiots!

  51. Grumps says

    Condoms on a tree obnoxious? Why? Do you find condoms obnoxious? Why? Do you find sex obnoxious? If that isn’t the case what is your problem?

  52. Lycanthrope says

    ‘Tis Himself, OM:

    Just because our opinion is that your opinion is fucked up doesn’t mean you don’t get to express your fucked up opinion.

    QFT. Kudos, for that is gold.

  53. anteprepro says

    Dissenting opinion is not really permitted in these parts, huh? </blockqoute cite?

    Yes, they are. Very much so. It's just that, when the dissenting opinion is either stupid, wrong, or just amounts to cliches or extended "BAAAAW"'s, they are still permitted, but are not as much tolerated. Because we like people to stop pushing falsehoods, and don't like dealing with the same shit over and over because people are too stupid to realize their contribution isn't new and/or isn't true. Full stop.

    The fact that you think condoms on a tree are "bad taste" is irrelevant unless grounded in reasons for being in bad taste. The only conceivable reasons are:
    1. Prudery, such that any display with condoms or anything slightly suggestive of sex would be objected to.
    2. Misguided religious supremacy, such that any mildly religious display that mildly deviated from the norm would be objected to.

    Pick your poison.

  54. you_monster says

    Benjaminhamilton,
    You have been asked many times, why is it obnoxious?

    You want to be free to express your deserting opinion, so go ahead, express yourself. Why does it bother you?

  55. benjaminhamilton says

    “You claim that their (only) intent was provocation. You got any proof for that assertion? After all, you don’t know them [people who decorated the tree].”

    Is condoms on trees proof? What isn’t intent? Or is intent REALLY intent?

    Bullshit really comes down to bullshit.

    You seem like fascist.

  56. anteprepro says

    Wow, benjamin. Don’t wow us with your logical ability all at once. Stagger it out a little, so we can fully comprehend why the offensiveness of condoms is such a universal truth that we need no further evidence other than the condoms themselves to demonize the people who dared to put condoms on a Christmas tree. And make sure to play the Fascist/Nazi/Hitler card more. It will give you all the credibility in the world, when done frequently enough! We believe in you, benjamin!

  57. janine says

    You seem like fascist.

    He cannot defend his statement so he resorts to this.

    Assclam, I may not know you but I do know that you are pathetic.

    You best fuck off now, you have nothing to offer.

  58. Heliantus says

    Voted – 76% Free speech

    Perhaps if the GSA referred to the condoms as “French letters” the junior GOPers would calm down.

    As I remember the French-bashing frenzy from US Republicans during the last Gulf war (notably Krauthammer who, in his Time Magazine editorials, always managed to say bad things of France, no matter that the topic of the editorial was), I would say this strategy is not going to work.

    Re: are the condoms still wrapped? From the pictures, most of them are, and free for the taking.
    I was looking at these pictures and just thinking, all of this noise for this small tree?

    [almost OT: best HIV awareness campaign I witnessed at my university, a guy walking around handing free condoms to the male students and saying “protect your 30 centimeters of love”]

  59. raven says

    kook melting down:

    Is condoms on trees proof? What isn’t intent? Or is intent REALLY intent?

    Bullshit really comes down to bullshit.

    You seem like fascist.

    Oh oh. Looks like the troll has already melted down. This doesn’t even make any sense. It is gibberish.

    Trolls, they just don’t last anymore. Must be made of cheap plastic from China.

    So Benjamin what is it about condoms that terrifies you? Do tell, maybe in a decade or two you can get over your fear of mass produced hollow latex balloons.

  60. Rey Fox says

    So really, they shouldn’t complain, because eventually all of the condoms will be gone from that tree.

  61. janine says

    So Benjamin what is it about condoms that terrifies you? Do tell, maybe in a decade or two you can get over your fear of mass produced hollow latex balloons.

    He does not need to answer because he is in a deadly battle with jack booted thugs who are trying to keep him from talking.

  62. Beatrice, anormalement indécente says

    benjaminhamilton,

    In your own words, we don’t know you therefore we are not allowed to draw conclusions about you from your comments. I just wanted to know how then can you make statements about the intent of anyone else who you don’t know.

    But thank you for informing me I’m a fascist. I never before realized that is the way I really think, but you’re the expert I guess.

  63. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    You seem like fascist.

    Here I explained what the first amendment means, you can’t even state WHY you find it obnoxious, just make the claim like a jingoist fascist yourself.

  64. raven says

    troll babbling:

    “a direct attack on Christianity

    It’s not.

    But what is wrong with attacking Christianity? We do it all the time, one of the main themes of this blog. Most of us are exXians and we know all about it.

    Christians attack atheists all the time. They freely and openly hate them. They also attack our society constantly, which they also openly hate and will destroy if they can.

    US xianity is redefining itself as a social problem as it chokes inself to death on its hate, lies, and insanity. Benjamin is a symptom, not a solution.

  65. you_monster says

    You seem like fascist.

    You seem like stupid coward afraid to defend moronic position.

    But, you_monster! I like deserting opinion.

    perhaps that was a more apt adjective, considering that benjamin seems to be deserting any attempt to defend his opinion.

  66. you_monster says

    He does not need to answer because he is in a deadly battle with jack booted thugs who are trying to keep him from talking.

    I never even got a chance to strap my stomping boots on. I was waiting for benjamin to give a reason for taking his opinion seriously.

  67. captainahags says

    Playing devil’s advocate, what if the people responsible were only trying to provoke? Answer: it doesn’t matter. It seems that whether a secular display goes up, the complaints are always accusations of ill intention- “You’re just trying to provoke us by mocking our religion/tradition/bigotry!” And yet, they never seem to realize that no matter the intentions, stated or otherwise, of the displayers, the display is allowed. If my neighbour decides to erect a 15 foot tall jesus on a cross in his yard, does it somehow have more legal protection if it’s because he’s a devout christian than if it’s because he knew I was an atheist and knew it would annoy me? Of course not- speech is speech, provocative or not.

    Too often it seems there is a begrudging admission of the right to do something, followed immediately by the suggestion that it should not be done. For example: “They have the right to decorate the tree, but it’s obnoxious so really they shouldn’t.” (It’s an example, not an actual quote.) It’s actually a subtle use of weasel words, as wikipedia would put it, a transformation of “I find X offensive” into “X is offensive.” This makes it seem that one who disagrees is going against obvious fact, rather than personal opinion. It’s almost equivalent to saying “God wants X”, in that the speaker projects their personal desire for X onto a god to lend it authority.

    Summary: Provoking for provoking’s sake doesn’t change the fact that it’s protected, and your finding something obnoxious does not mean everyone thinks the same.

  68. benjaminhamilton says

    “Benjaminhamilton,
    You have been asked many times, why is it obnoxious?

    You want to be free to express your deserting opinion, so go ahead, express yourself. Why does it bother you?”

    Goodness, I misspelled a word….Hey! Everyone! Make Fun!

    And everything you do privately should be public? Really??? Go ahead. I don’t care what you do privately. I will fight for right to do what you do.

    But a condom in a holiday tree is still dumb….and you know why.

  69. Lycanthrope says

    benjaminhamilton @62:

    Is condoms on trees proof? What isn’t intent? Or is intent REALLY intent?

    Bullshit really comes down to bullshit.

    You seem like fascist.

    No, “condoms on trees” is proof of nothing. You keep saying their intent was only to be inflammatory as if it were self-evident. It isn’t. In comment #52 I explained what I thought the intent was. No, I don’t know the people who put up the tree, but I’m making an educated guess, and I think it’s a reasonable assumption.

    david @70:

    Nice. *digital fist bump*

  70. Beatrice, anormalement indécente says

    Condoms hanging from the trees. Madness, I tell you. Madness!

    *benjaminhamilton’s head explodes*

  71. janine says

    I never even got a chance to strap my stomping boots on. I was waiting for benjamin to give a reason for taking his opinion seriously.

    That is why my troll stomping boots are wooden shoes that has been painted red. No need to strap them on and the red hides the blood.

  72. Beatrice, anormalement indécente says

    But a condom in a holiday tree is still dumb….and you know why.

    I’m just a dumb fascist and I don’t know. Will you finally explain it, pretty please with a cherry flavored condom on top?

  73. Lycanthrope says

    captainahags @77:

    Do you know the Amazing Atheist on YouTube? I don’t watch him regularly, and I don’t always agree with him, but something he said once that really resonated with me was in a video called “Everything Is Offensive!”. To paraphrase:

    “People have this idea that their being offended makes the object of their offense indebted to them in some way, but it doesn’t. All it means is that they are offended.”

  74. anteprepro says

    But a condom in a holiday tree is still dumb….and you know why.

    Because doing so makes people think condoms grow on trees, meaning that someone, someday will mistakenly use a crabapple as contraception?
    Because it would be too expensive to put a condom on every pollen-covered pine cone?
    Because there are Tree STDs, so we don’t have to encourage safe sex for the evergreens?
    Because condoms do not serve well as Christmas lights?
    Because everyone is closet theocrat/prude, like you?

    Please, do explain.

  75. janine says

    And everything you do privately should be public? Really??? Go ahead. I don’t care what you do privately. I will fight for right to do what you do.

    Who is having sex publicly. Besides, safe sex campaings would be very ineffective if they were private.

    But a condom in a holiday tree is still dumb….and you know why.

    No, I do not know why. I do not know you, I do not know what is in your head. You need to fucking spell it out.

    Also, dumb fuck; you need to fucking apologize for calling us fascist.

  76. benjaminhamilton says

    benjaminhamilton’s head explodes*

    OMG…it totally did! You are super smart….I’can’t believe that I wasn’t able able to your comprehend your ability. Hey! Isn’t it fun to insult people over the Internet?

  77. says

    BenjaminHamilton:

    But a condom in a holiday tree is still dumb….and you know why.

    No, I don’t know why. It’s obvious you think it’s dumb, however, you haven’t explained why you think that.

    Condoms on a holiday tree doesn’t strike me as dumb in any way – it’s a fun and clever way to raise awareness of HIV, stds and the importance of safe sex. Win, win, win.

  78. Beatrice, anormalement indécente says

    benjaminhamilton,

    [OT]
    As a matter of fact it is. Is it fun being an obnoxious asshole on the internet?

    On topic, will you finally explain why the sight of a condom on a tree offends you so?

  79. raven says

    And everything you do privately should be public? Really??? Go ahead. I don’t care what you do privately. I will fight for right to do what you do.

    I think I’ve discovered the source of Benjamin’s mental problems.

    He thinks a tree with condoms on it is the same as having sex in public. To do that you have to have a very mistaken idea of what sex is and how it is performed.

    I’ll give you a hint. You can have sex and be nowhere near a cut down evergreen tree. The rest will have to wait until you are older and your mother is in the mood to explain things to you.

  80. janine says

    OMG…it totally did! You are super smart….I’can’t believe that I wasn’t able able to your comprehend your ability. Hey! Isn’t it fun to insult people over the Internet?

    Simple question for you, shitstain; when you called us fascist, was that an insult or what you thought was a statement of fact?

  81. 'Tis Himself, OM says

    I don’t find condoms offensive, either on or off trees. So please explain why I should find them offensive.

  82. Gregory Greenwood says

    benjaminhamilton @ 78;

    But a condom in a holiday tree is still dumb….and you know why.

    No, we don’t ‘know why’ you find the placing of condoms on a pagan fertility symbol appropriated by christianity so offensive. We aren’t psychic, so why don’t you enlighten us?

    Why is the ‘condom tree’ such an issue for you? Why do you think that delicate theist sensibilities are more important than the anti-AIDS campaign?

  83. 'Tis Himself, OM says

    janine #91

    Simple question for you, shitstain; when you called us fascist, was that an insult or what you thought was a statement of fact?

    Janine, don’t you know it’s only fascists who don’t object to condoms. You were thinking fascism was an authoritarian nationalist political ideology. That’s wrong. Fascists are pro-condoms on trees, anti-fascists are anti-condoms on trees. It couldn’t be simpler.

  84. janine says

    Apparently, if you can see them (still in the wrapper!), you’re having sex in public.

    This is just an other example of those youngster demanding their drugs, rock&roll and fucking in the streets. The youth are running wild and need to be put in their place.

  85. Beatrice, anormalement indécente says

    Apparently, if you can see them (still in the wrapper!), you’re having sex in public.

    So. so… that means my precious virginity is gone!
    *bursts into tears and runs from the room*

    Anyway, I guess that means keeping innocent children from seeing the tree is a futile attempt at preserving their innocence, if they’ve ever been to a supermarket.

  86. 'Tis Himself, OM says

    Caine #94

    Apparently, if you can see them (still in the wrapper!), you’re having sex in public.

    Which will cause small children to ask embarrassing questions of their parents: “Mommy, why is that man holding a small pouch in his hand?” That makes sense.

  87. Brother Ogvorbis, OM, Demoted says

    benjaminhamilton:

    Why, other than ‘it pisses of Christians’, is it in bad taste or obnoxious?

    And everything you do privately should be public? Really??? Go ahead. I don’t care what you do privately. I will fight for right to do what you do.

    But a condom in a holiday tree is still dumb….and you know why.

    Once again, can you answer the question?

    OMG…it totally did! You are super smart….I’can’t believe that I wasn’t able able to your comprehend your ability. Hey! Isn’t it fun to insult people over the Internet?

    You keep commenting without answering the question. If you answer the question, “why, other than ‘it pisses of Christians’, is it in bad taste or obnoxious?” then maybe you can earn some respect. To continue to whine about how your are treated, when we have asked, repeatedly, for your reasoning, is rather childish.

  88. janine says

    Fascists are pro-condoms on trees, anti-fascists are anti-condoms on trees.

    By cracky, you are right. After all, the yule log was of Germanic origin.

  89. anat says

    To robro (#4):

    some years ago at Christmas, my son had some friends over for his birthday overnight. my wife was decorating the tree and asked one of the boys if he would like to help. “Oh no, we don’t celebrate Christmas at my house. We’re Jewish, you know.” my wife responded, “Oh, that’s OK, it’s a pagan ritual anyway.” Sadly, the young fellow still didn’t get it.

    To a Jew who doesn’t want to perform rites of other religions a pagan ritual is no better than a Christian celebration.

  90. says

    But a condom in a holiday tree is still dumb….and you know why.

    I….do not.

    Is condoms on trees proof? What isn’t intent? Or is intent REALLY intent?

    Bullshit really comes down to bullshit.

    You seem like fascist.

    Yes fascists are always stern defenders of free speech and logical reasoning.

    You seem like an idiot.

  91. says

    Janine:

    The youth are running wild and need to be put in their place.

    Eh, they aren’t near as wild as we were in my day, we called condoms rubbers! And they grew on trees everywhere!

    ObDec: Git off my lawn, etc.

  92. alkaloid says

    80.72% free speech against the other options by now, after I voted.

    It cheers me up slightly in a really rotten month otherwise to think that perhaps I helped make Glenn Beck cry.

    Secondly, let’s think of some even more offensive tree decor. Because that’s what the Beckians obviously want us to do.

    What about a nativity scene depicting the atrocities approved of by god in the bible?

  93. benjaminhamilton says

    You guys are fun! Half of you all assume I’m a Bible beater. The other half seems I’m wrong for saying putting a condom on a tree might be in bad taste….

  94. David Marjanović says

    Absolutely. It’s offensive! 17.1% (1,550 votes)

    Nope. Free speech! 80.8% (7,324 votes)

    I’m in the middle on this one. 2.1% (190 votes)

    Total Votes: 9,064

  95. janine says

    Caine, I think you just might be confusing ‘Tis. He probably thinks a rubber keeps his feet dry.

    Wait a second, you know what they say about the size of a man’s feet…

  96. Brother Ogvorbis, OM, Demoted says

    You guys are fun! Half of you all assume I’m a Bible beater. The other half seems I’m wrong for saying putting a condom on a tree might be in bad taste….

    You are the one who said it was in bad taste and/or obnoxious. Why, other than ‘it pisses of Christians’, is it in bad taste or obnoxious?

    Please note that this is the third or fourth time I have asked for an explanation. And I have been rather polite about it. Up ’til now.

    So, you fucking douchebag asshole, are you going to actually provide either a reason or an explanation for your desire to squash free speech, or are you going to continue being an absofuckinglute assclam?

  97. janine says

    You guys are fun! Half of you all assume I’m a Bible beater. The other half seems I’m wrong for saying putting a condom on a tree might be in bad taste….

    You are wrong. I think you are a gibbering idiot who avoids answering easy questions.

    Also, fucking defend why you called us fascist.

    (No. I will not let that go.)

  98. says

    BenjaminHamilton:

    seems I’m wrong for saying putting a condom on a tree might be in bad taste….

    You did not say it might be in bad taste. That’s not what you said at all. Your posts are visible, in this thread, you know. Go back and read them if your memory is so rotten.

    Otherwise, stop backpedaling. You were wrong and you said idiotic things, such as accusing us of being fascists.

    Condoms may be personally offensive to you, but in case you haven’t noticed, no one is forcing you to own them, use them, look at them or decorate a tree with them.

    If you are incapable of explaining why you took such offense, then shut the fuck up already.

  99. Becca Stareyes says

    But a condom in a holiday tree is still dumb….and you know why.

    No, I don’t. I work on a college campus, and the health clinic has bowls of free condoms openly displayed, as well as posters reminding students to use common sense about various sex and drug related issues*. I’d imagine it would be a good idea to put them in the residence halls if they aren’t there already.

    Placing existing publicly-displayed free items on a tree in December seems like a cute way to remind penis-having students to wrap their Christmas presents, so to speak, and doesn’t change the fact that there are free condoms on campus.

    * You know, don’t binge drink, don’t coerce other students into sex, practice safer sex, back out of things if they look unsafe, here’s places to call for help if you need it.

  100. SallyStrange, Spawn of Cthulhu says

    Half of you all assume I’m a Bible beater.

    Nope. That was just one person, a while ago. Nobody else has mentioned it. Why, is it on your mind? Beating Bibles, I mean? Or being accused of it? Hey, the Bible was asking for it! Sorry, tangent.

    The other half seems I’m wrong for saying putting a condom on a tree might be in bad taste….

    Again, nope. Not half. Pretty much everyone. Which is because you are wrong. Condoms on trees is in perfectly good taste.

    Unless you think sex and condoms are inherently tasteless.

    Which is a dumb thing to think.

    But then, you do seem spectacularly dumb.

  101. janine says

    If you are incapable of explaining why you took such offense, then shut the fuck up already.

    Why should he when he call call us fascist?

    Still waiting for you to explain yourself.

  102. anat says

    To benjaminhamilton:

    Is condoms on trees proof? What isn’t intent?

    The sign says people are invited to take the still-wrapped condoms. It’s a give-away. In a public place where anyone could be passing by. IOW an effective way to get many random people access to a condom. The fact that it is done in a way that stands out makes the event of getting the condom more memorable. If any of them engages in sex they might be more likely to remember they have that condom and be likely to use it. That’s it.

  103. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    I’m wrong for saying putting a condom on a tree might be in bad taste….

    Why is it bad taste. Explain yourself, or be exposed as a troll just trying to make mischief. That is the differnce between a real opinion and trolling. A rational opinion has reasons/justifications. You have presented nothing but uninformed opinion, i.e., trolling.

  104. SallyStrange, Spawn of Cthulhu says

    Why should he when he call call us fascist?

    Still waiting for you to explain yourself.

    Simple:

    Fascist = bad.

    Janine/the Horde = bad.

    Therefore Janine/the Horde = fascists

    QED

  105. anteprepro says

    The other half seems I’m wrong for saying putting a condom on a tree might be in bad taste….

    Because all you’ve done is assert that it is in offensive, over and over again, without telling us WHY. WHY is it in bad taste? What kind of rules of decorum is it violating, and why is violating those particular rules inherently justify others taking offense? Show your fucking work or STFU.

  106. julian says

    Ok, when I first heard condoms underneath a Christmas tree I facepalmed and thought someone had done something stupid.

    Reading what actually happened (a tree with closed condom packages aimed at raising awareness for HIV and HIV prevention) I smacked myself for letting my initial first impression prejudice me against what’s obviously an initiative everyone should get behind.

    But since when do Republicans and Christians give a fuck about HIV awareness and prevention. Anything even touching on sex must be banned and barred from the light of day.

  107. 'Tis Himself, OM says

    janine #108

    Caine, I think you just might be confusing ‘Tis. He probably thinks a rubber keeps his feet dry.

    Silly Janine. I know a rubber is what you use to correct an error made with a pencil.

    Wait a second, you know what they say about the size of a man’s feet…

    <puzzled look> My shoe size is 8½ medium. What does that say about me?

  108. Brother Ogvorbis, OM, Demoted says

    #99…Really?

    Really. All I, and others, have asked is that you support your fucking statement philosophically or with some evidence. But to make a categorical statement and the flat our refuse to respond to requests for clarification (and no, writing that we already know is not clarifiation) is asshole behaviour. So, fuckwad, are you going to actually answer anyone’s questions (doesn’t have to be mine, just answer one)? Or are you going to continue to whine about how mean people are because we request clarification or evidence?

  109. Dr. Audley Z. Darkheart OM, liar and scoundrel says

    Well, shit. I wish I had seen this before I decided that I wasn’t going to put up my Secular Family Holiday and Gift Giving Occasion™ tree this year.

    Condoms! On a tree! Awesome!

    Unless you’re little offended Benny, of course. ‘Cos condoms are offensive for some damn reason which he still hasn’t bothered to explain.

    *sigh* I was really hoping for some fundamentalist Christian troll, who could explain some sofisticated theologie to us and not this current whiny colostomy bag who can’t even support his positions.

  110. Moggie says

    Putting little gifts on trees is traditional, is it not? In my family it was always chocolate liquers, but when everyone around the tree will be an adult, condoms would be more useful. It sounds like a great idea.

    To our barely-literate friend: has it occurred to you that many members of the group doing this are likely to be Christians? Why do their feelings in the matter count for less than those of the perpetually-offended (and offensive) Young Republicans?

  111. janine says

    Sally, you are playing the same logic game as this.

    Socrates was Greek.

    Socrates is dead.

    Therefore, all Greeks are dead.

    You are trying to make a funny.

    But I want the humor (In both sense of the word.) that comes from our latest troll.

  112. Beatrice, anormalement indécente says

    Come on, I asked so nicely for an explanation why the combination of condoms and a tree is so offensive and I didn’t get an answer. Is it because there was a condom on top of that pretty please? You really seem to have issues with condoms.

  113. Dr. Audley Z. Darkheart OM, liar and scoundrel says

    Beatrice:

    You really seem to have issues with condoms.

    My money’s on Benny having a problem with sex in general. Every time he looks at/thinks of condoms, he thinks of teh secks, which is icky and squishy and gross. Oh noes!

  114. janine says

    Beatrice, if he answered you, he would be giving in to the threats of fascist. You do want him to stand up for himself. Besides, you already know.

  115. says

    BenjaminHamilton:

    Hey, a condom on tree means nothing.

    So why spend so much time saying it was offensive? Why spend so much time saying it was dumb? Why scream “fascists!” at us?

    Why the constant refusal to explain yourself?

  116. Dr. Audley Z. Darkheart OM, liar and scoundrel says

    Caine:

    I think it should be called a Sonky Tree*.

    Yes!

    Although, I gotta admit, having condoms on a tree in my own house is kind of useless, besides the aesthetics. The Gay Straight Alliance have a way better idea.

  117. says

    I can’t wait for The Blaze’s trolls to arrive! let’s all warm up with benjaminhamilton.

    Ok benjaminhamilton let’s just take a second and go over what happened.
    1. You called the true stupid, obnoxious and offensive.

    2. Intelligent commenters managed to simultaneously call you an idiot yet still managed to refute your assertion.

    3. You whined about not being understood and claimed we didn’t allow dissenting opinions without backing up your assertion.

    4. Commenters rightly pointed out that you were being allowed to have an opinion, just as we are allowed to call you an idiot for your opinion.

    5. You called people fascists, again without backing it up and your only reconstruction of your argument was “you know why it’s dumb”

    6.Another round of calling you an idiot and asking for you to back up your claim

    7. Knee-jerk insults and another failure to back up your claim on your part.

    Do you understand why we’re calling you a troll?
    Why is it you can’t back up your argument and throw out insults in the same comment? None of the rest of us have a problem with that.

  118. janine says

    Hey, a condom on tree means nothing. Go forward. It’s free speech.

    The spleen weasel changes it’s tune.

    I suppose that calling us fascist</b? is also just free speech.

  119. johanfruh says

    A christmas tree is definately made so we can hang symbols of torture devices (mostly a crucifix) and fat coca-cola sponsors. We can also put up candles so they can accidently burn down a couple of trees every year, taking down the house and family as well.

    Christmas trees, however, are NOT made to hang items that allow people to express their love in safety, and potentially prolonging their lives.

    Holiday trees on the other hand…

  120. 'Tis Himself, OM says

    >br?Hey, a condom on tree means nothing. Go forward. It’s free speech.

    Again you’re wrong. A condom on a tree means use a condom when having sex to prevent the spread of STIs.

  121. says

    But a condom in a holiday tree is still dumb….and you know why.

    Thanks for telling me what my opinion is. Although I would still appreciate your explanation for why I hold that opinion.
    I need to stay informed, after all.

  122. David Marjanović says

    benjaminhamilton, you believe that it’s somehow obvious why a tree with condoms on it should be considered offensive. But, honestly, it’s not. Pretend we’re Vulcans or something and explain it to us. We’re all ears (…sorry… bad pun).

    [almost OT: best HIV awareness campaign I witnessed at my university, a guy walking around handing free condoms to the male students and saying “protect your 30 centimeters of love”]

    Whoa! 30 cm is a lot. It’s almost exactly 12 inches for the metrically-challenged out there.

    Trolls, they just don’t last anymore. Must be made of cheap plastic from China.

    :-)

  123. anteprepro says

    You really seem to have issues with condoms.

    A Condom killed his father and burned down his entire village when he was but a lad. He is just now taking up the sword against them.

    Hey, a condom on tree means nothing.

    So…decoding Benny, it seems that his second-hand offense was that condoms on trees was some sort of symbolic message meant to insult Christianity. Because nothing is as degrading as things involved with sex, and nothing is as emblematic of the Christian religion as the holiday tree that has not the slightest logical connection to the religion’s teachings. NOTHING!

    You know what would’ve been really offensive? Making a map, sticking most of the condoms to Europe and America, sticking red pins in the rest of the map around Africa that are meant to represent AIDS, and have a giant ceramic Pope sitting on Italy, with a painted on Hitler ‘stache, pointing at Africa, with a sign saying “No safe sex for you!” attached near his mouth. And then have a picture of priests raping kids right next to the map. THAT would’ve been offensive. And accurate. Funny, how often that happens.

  124. you_monster says

    benjaminhamilton,
    Fuck off and get off your cross*. You made an assertion. People asked what your reasoning was behind it. You then proceed to loose your shit and claim people are misunderstanding and misrepresenting you.

    Want people to stop berating you for being a troll? Stop being such a fucking troll and explain your opinion.

    It should only take a few sentences. Just quickly explain why you are offended, then go back to lamenting the terrible fascists who are mistreating you.

    *this is not insinuating that you are a xtian, only that you are a self-righteous ass.

  125. 'Tis Himself, OM says

    30 cm is a lot. It’s almost exactly 12 inches for the metrically-challenged out there.

    Maybe it’s a lot to you. Some of us aren’t length-challenged.

  126. says

    @Caine

    You’re late to the party, we’re all sittin’ around, filing our fangs, waiting for something toothsome to come along.

    Damn, my tentacles are itching for a nice fight with a troll, I really hope one of those Blazing idiots come along soon.

  127. 'Tis Himself, OM says

    ok…it’s a tree with condoms.i get it. who doesn’t?

    Now do you want to explain why you called us fascists?

  128. ChasCPeterson says

    They had every right to decorate a Christmas tree with condoms, but they could have at least had the class to keep it discreetly behind a drugstore counter where such things belong.

    oh, you know why all right.

  129. janine says

    The shitstain really does not like to answer questions.

    Why that fuck did you call us fascist?

    And I add this qualifier, failure to answer means that you lacked anything else to say and you just wanted to get mean.

  130. Brother Ogvorbis, OM . . . Really? says

    Hey, a condom on tree means nothing. Go forward. It’s free speech.

    Wow. I am impressed. In order avoid answering some rather straightforward questions about what you wrote, you now have decided to engage in intellectual and personal dishonesty by reversing your position. Is this the way you always respond to being challenged? If so, you are not only a fucking asshole, but you are also extremely sad.

  131. Gregory Greenwood says

    anteprepro @ 143;

    A Condom killed his father and burned down his entire village when he was but a lad. He is just now taking up the sword against them.

    I believe that this sniny new internet is yours. You can keep it with your Riddle of Steel.

    As fictional deities* go, Crom is a whole lot more fun than Yahweh.

    —————————————————————-

    * Not that there is any other kind.

  132. says

    benjaminhamilton:

    ok…it’s a tree with condoms.i get it. who doesn’t?

    Do you have a brain injury? Serious question. Yes, it’s a holiday tree, decorated with condoms, which are free to anyone. As to “who doesn’t”, it’s you that doesn’t fucking get it.

    If you don’t have a brain injury, you’re one poor excuse for a troll.

  133. Dr. Audley Z. Darkheart OM, liar and scoundrel says

    I feel like I should get off my lazy ass and write a song for the back pedalers.

    Back pedalin’… WHOOOAAA WHOA WHOOOOAAAA! Back pedaling!

    Okay, I admit, it needs some work.

    Anyway, Benny, you can defend your position of Oh noes! Condoms on a Xmas tree are bad and offensive! any time now.

  134. Sastra says

    If there was but one official tree for the entire college and it was decorated with nothing but condoms I could see some merit in protesting that it’s in bad taste or that it’s a bad idea — but that’s not the situation. This is a little tree representing a specific group put up by the specific group. Whether it’s decorated with condoms, coupons, or cheese and crackers makes no difference. It’s being used like a poster. Fine.

    If you would have no problem with a poster studded with free condoms, then there has to be a separate argument made for why it’s different if it’s a Christmas/holiday tree. There’s probably a variety of trees with various messages. Personally, I’d hate one with a bunch of “JESUS is the REASON for the SEASON” and “Keep the CHRIST in CHRISTMAS” placards, but I wouldn’t protest that it needs to be taken down because it’s offensive. I’d argue over why it’s offensive, with specifics.

  135. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    ok…it’s a tree with condoms.i get it. who doesn’t?

    Still no EXPLANATION for original statement, and no EXPLANATION for your back peddling. Are you really that stupid to think don’t see through your idiocy???

  136. janine says

    Sastra, I do not think that the troll is ready to deal with someone as even-keeled as you. If it was just you asking questions, I am sure his reaction would be to yell, fascist.

  137. F says

    zenoferox @ 18

    I find that there is a tasty bit of irony in the concept of “hiding behind” applied to the concept of “open expression”.

  138. Crip Dyke, Right Reverend Feminist FuckToy of Death & Her Handmaiden says

    May I just say, I effing love sabotaging propaganda of so many kinds, but sabotaging bad propaganda of the Blaze’s type warms the cockles of my heart.

    Keep up the good discussions and swatting trolls.

    I was bristling for just this kind of fun the other day, but I have a trip to the forest with my doggie and then a movie with my best friend planned for the rest of today. I rely on the existing expertise to continue winning the day.

    I’m on Team ‘Brains are useful, why not use them?’. Go Team!

  139. Brother Ogvorbis, OM . . . Really? says

    ok…it’s a tree with condoms.i get it. who doesn’t?

    Have you ever had to defend a statement in a paper at school (high school, college, whatever)? A paper in which you make a statement and then support it (usually with three or more different lines of reasoning or evidence)? All you are doing now is lying to the readers of the comments in this blog and to yourself.

    Now I know that this is a really whacky, radical idea, but it just may work. You could try being honest. As in writing what you see as the truth. Some or all of us may disagree with you, but at least we would all be able to have a real conversation.

    But, again, making a statement (I think condoms on a tree X and therefore we should ignore the concept of free speech) and then refusing, despite being asked rudely and nicely, to give any reason or evidence for your stand is truly impressive fucktard asshattery.

    Pick one question. Just one. Either explain why you think those who disagree with you are fascists, or explain why condoms on a tree is innapropriate (and, for me at least, the argument that it’ll offend Christians is both a copout and useless).

  140. Dr. Audley Z. Darkheart OM, liar and scoundrel says

    Oggie:

    Either explain why you think those who disagree with you are fascists…

    That one’s easy. Everyone’s opinion is equal or else fascism!

  141. a_ray_in_dilbert_space says

    Janine, after years of exhaustive study, I can definitively saythe contention of the douchebag in your link is incorrect.

  142. Anri says

    benjaminhamilton – But a condom in a holiday tree is still dumb a clever, thought-provoking way to simultaneously irritate religious fanatics and raise safe-sex awareness… and you know why.

    See?
    Much better!

    If only because it’s vastly more accurate.

  143. ChasCPeterson says

    I mean, if it was just a tree, so what?
    Or, like, some condoms? Who cares!

    But here, they have been…
    combined.

    It’s a tree with condoms.

    see?

  144. Gregory Greenwood says

    ChasCPeterson @ 169;

    It’s a tree with condoms.

    I just know there is a ‘getting wood’ joke in there somewhere…

  145. says

    With that shit they pulled of at UC Berkeley, Young Republicans have no standing to call this tree “obscene”. And also, if they find it offensive to their religious sensibility, the Bible already suggest to pluck out their own eyes.

  146. julian says

    In other words, it was both, together.

    Like Christ, who was both man and Divine! Truly there can be no better expression of celebrating His birth than with a condom tree.

  147. evilDoug says

    Oops, there goes another rubber tree…

    Heliantus @ 67
    I guess I should have included a winkie. I was thinking along the lines of “the condoms have ‘em red in the face now, let’s see if we can make ‘em purple”.
    ~~~
    Offensive? Bad taste? As I am wont to say, “Boo fucking hoo!”
    If I were setting out to deliberately offend Christians, somewhere near the tree would be a sign com “Millions of people have been preventably infected with AIDS. Millions have died. Millions of kids have been left without parents. Christians leaders helped that to happen.”

    While I would think it pretty improbable that college students wouldn’t be “aware” of AIDS, I suspect that this is exactly the time of year they need an unsubtle reminder. Term over. Exams over. Huge sigh of relief.
    “Let’s go do it!”
    “But I don’t have a condom.”
    “That’s OK, Jesus wouldn’t let anything bad happen to us.”

    Perhaps some of the offence comes from the idea that if condoms had been handed out at the Spring Equinox Festival that year, Mary might not have been great with child come the Winter Solstice Festival.

  148. RFW says

    Notice that the young rethuglicans are complaining that it’s “a direct attack on xtianity”? I thought the rethuglican party was a political party, not an ecclesiastical one.

    One would like to corner the bright spark who came up with that line and ask him to explain, in detail and without hedging, just how a Christmas tree decorated with condoms in any way attacks xtianity, or, for that matter, any other religion. I fail to see the connection. Alas, the opportunity will not present itself.

    Them dudes are seriously messed up about sex.

    PS: Of course, we all know what the real motivation for such a complaint is: more fuel to fire up the base and get them to send money, more money (with the usual tip of the hat to LRH). More and more, I think it would be entirely appropriate to round up the entire gang of dominionists and their aiders and abetters, and charge them with sedition and conspiracy to overthrow the Constitution. Release all the imprisoned blacks convicted on minor drug charges go and stuff the prisons with the dominionists. Or send them to Gulag Guantanamo.

  149. a_ray_in_dilbert_space says

    Janine, I am a heterosexual male who spent the years of his sexual peak getting a PhD in physics. Don’t do the math. It’s too disturbing. It also most definitely did not make me want to have sex with women any less.

  150. mikee says

    Personally I don’t find the tree that impressive (the condom on top looks really tacky) but the suggestion that it is “a direct attack on Christianity” is absurd. Or is there an eleventh commandment that I missed, perhaps “Thou shalt not hang contraceptive devices on pine trees”
    Christians seem to spend far too much time looking for things to be offended about.

  151. you_monster says

    Christians seem to spend far too much time looking for things to be offended about.

    So do fait heists like benjamin

  152. Wishful Thinking Rules All says

    LOL. The things people get upset about. I could understand if the tree was loaded with unwrapped condoms, but wrapped ones? Wrapped ones fit right in with all of the other various colored ornaments. An entire tree of unwrapped condoms would be just as offensive as only hanging red balls on the tree.

    We need variety for fuck’s sake. They did use different colored condom wrappers, yes? Please tell me yes.

  153. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    What is interesting, I seem to remember condoms on a holiday tree at my undergraduate university, circa 1970. An old tradition, amongst those who wish to prevent unwanted pregnancies and STDs. Why would any rational person be against preventing unwanted pregnancies and STDs???

  154. says

    My comment there:

    What’s wrong with putting condoms on the Yule tree? Condoms are a perfectly adequate way to celebrate the end of Saturnalia and the birth of Mithra, Horus, Hercules, Zeus, and Sol Invictus.

    And why do Christians want to bastardize those noble births with their newfangled Yaweh baby? Horus beats him by, what, 5,000 years?

    Let‘s stop Christians’ appropriation of the holiday! It’s gone on long enough!

    I hope it makes some of their brains asplode.

    (List of births appropriated from Calamities of Nature Comic 470 )

  155. Lycanthrope says

    janine @170:

    Don’t knock it. Studying this question is hard work. And the consequences are dire if we blow it.

    …Had to…

  156. you_monster says

    Let‘s stop Christians’ appropriation of the holiday! It’s gone on long enough!

    There is no stopping the xian War on Paganism

  157. janine says

    They shitstain has slunk away. The answer is clear. He just wanted to stir shit up because he had nothing.

  158. eclectabotanics says

    I guess they can’t rig the vote like at the polls in Republican-leaning districts.

    Nearly 85%

    Who double-dipped their wick in Glenn’s Poll?

  159. you_monster says

    I am very much looking forward to the complaints about their poll being crashed. Some people just don’t understand what an internet poll means.

    glenn beck, “85% of my audience favors free speech, even when it offends them? No way, must have been pharyngulated again!”

  160. Brother Ogvorbis, OM . . . Really? says

    Why would any rational person be against preventing unwanted pregnancies and STDs???

    Because STDs and pregnancy are gods’ way of outing those promiscuous and lascivious female almost people!

    Oh. Wait. You wrote ‘rational.’

    hmm.

    For conservative fundraising to elect more right win . . . .

    Damn. Rational.

    er.

    hm.

    um.

    erm.

    Nope, I got nothing.

  161. Brother Ogvorbis, OM . . . Really? says

    Crap. That would have been far nicer if i had actually spelled your name right. Sorry, Jadhawk.

  162. janine says

    Well, it is good to know you are still around. And I agree, there is not much point in commenting if you do not feel like it.

  163. Brother Ogvorbis, OM . . . Really? says

    Fuck. I’m sorry, Jadehawk. This is not my normal keyboard. Sorry.

  164. otrame says

    Janine at 162:

    Did you notice that the good Dr. Felix does not seem to know that women masturbate, too? Not to mention that if all males masturbate at times, and only roughly 10% (I actually don’t know what the real percentage is–that is just a number I’ve heard used frequently) are gay, then it makes more sense to claim that masturbation prevents homosexuality.

    Or not.

  165. janine says

    Women do not think about having sex. Women are there to be fucked by their owner. Now that is natural sex.

  166. MMXI Vole says

    Hey, Benny, don’t go away ’cause I may be able to help you discover your inner “You”.

    But first —

    “Christians seem to spend far too much time looking for things to be offended about.”

    The Early Christians (ECs) were persecuted by the Romans (among others?). For example, ECs were responsible for a lot of well-fed lions and tigers and bears — oh, my! — in the Colosseum.

    Jesus was not born any time near the winter solstice, but the Roman festival of Saturnalia was chosen by the ECs as an opportunity to celebrate his birth without attracting any attention (and risk of becoming further feed for the captive wildlife).

    My hypothesis is, some of today’s Christians look “for things to be offended about” because of the need to feel persecuted, especially around Christmas time, just like in the good ol’ days. After all, what’s an authentic celebration of Christmas without the persecution?

    Now back to Benny —

    Perhaps leading by example will help you find the way.

    A condom is one of the best, inexpensive, convenient and most-readily available preventatives of STD transmission and unwanted pregnancy.

    I have bought condoms and I have used them.

    I have no problem with any group promoting the use of condoms at any time of the year.

    I looked at the Christmas/Holiday/Solstice Tree in question and had no problem with the wrapped-condom ornaments.

    But the unwrapped, unrolled and inverted condom at the top reminded me of the used condoms I’ve seen at the beach or other public places that were discarded by people whose sense of responsibility did not include the condom’s sanitary disposal.

    That minor objection is a personal issue that I have to deal with, and negligible compared to all of the positive aspects: I voted for “Free Speech”.

  167. says

    Janine you’re just plain wrong, women think about having sex. That’s why we can’t let them drive cars or eat bananas, cucumbers or zucchini…

    Damn, just realized I was channeling the wrong fundy. My bad :(

  168. 'Tis Himself, OM says

    Women do not think about having sex. Women are there to be fucked by their owner.

    But the wife thinks about sex a lot.

    Oh my FSM, she must be a man!

    That means I’m GAY!1!!

  169. grimalkin says

    I don’t sere how you guys don’t see this is as anti-Christmas as it gets.

    Everyone knows it’s better to give than to recieve, this tree is just encouraging people to be selfish with their STDs.

    Sarcasm aside, I like how they freak about elementary school children seeing condoms. If anything, that’s the best time for them to learn about them- way before they ever actually need them.

  170. janine says

    But the wife thinks about sex a lot.

    Oh my FSM, she must be a man!

    That means I’m GAY!1!!

    The facade that is the life of ‘Tis crumbles and he plunges headfirst into a strange, new and wonderful life.

  171. says

    But the wife thinks about sex a lot.

    Oh my FSM, she must be a man!

    That means I’m GAY!1!!

    Is that supposed you’re THE Gay one. Or are you Gay prime?

    Personally I think an autobot named homosexual prime would be pretty badass.

  172. 'Tis Himself, OM says

    The facade that is the life of ‘Tis crumbles and he plunges headfirst into a strange, new and wonderful life.

    I’m just trying to think of a way to explain to the wife that she’s a man. I’m sure she’ll bring up trivial arguments like her vagina and having been pregnant and stuff like that to deny it. :-(

  173. says

    Women do not think about having sex. Women are there to be fucked by their owner. Now that is natural sex.

    Right. Women don’t think about sex. But they are, as patriarchal authority claims, in awe of the penis.

  174. Dr. Audley Z. Darkheart OM, liar and scoundrel says

    That means I’m GAY!1!!

    Well, crap. There goes my plan to seduce ‘Tis with my condom covered Secular Family Holiday and Gift Giving Occasion™ tree. (‘Cos that’s what condoms do, right? Make us all into unstoppable horndogs?)

  175. RFW says

    Re Grimalkin’s remark about children seeing condoms:

    Surely every person reading this blog can remember seeing used condoms when they were kids? Do the xters keep their kids under such tight control that this no longer happens? Do kids no longer get to wander in parks and woodlands and back alleys? Is the phrase Lovers Lane unknown to those people?

    Amusing anecdote: when I was in junior high school (grades 7-9), one of the guys found a box of condoms on the way to school. An entire gross! Stashed it in his locker, for lack of any better use at the time.

    Cometh the teacher for locker inspection, looking for contraband and mess. Uh-oh. The box of rubbers got passed from hand to hand, from locker to locker so it was always either ahead of, or behind, The Inspectress of Lockers, and thus escaped detection. Mission accomplished! Whew!

    PS: in those halcyon days, they weren’t looking for drugs or firearms.

  176. sc_06fa8fa5ed3ee5ad494ea30c78fb4224 says

    Well, I added my .02 and I’m heartened to see those poll numbers are a lot different now :) A very prophylactic Xmas to you all!

  177. Randomfactor says

    I give that tree a 90% grade; it would’ve been 100% if they’d taken the time to top it with a spire which was condom-protected instead of using the unwrapped condom to bind naked branches together–the fascists.

  178. Fred5 says

    To me it just seems provoking for provoking’s sake.

    Yeah, because using a Christmas Tree (or holiday tree, or whatever you want to call it) is always wrong, right? After all, the Christers would never do that, would they?

    No, they wouldn’t do such a tacky thing as that.

    Oh, wait. Yes, they would.

  179. copasetic38 says

    Jesus-Tap-Fucking-Dancing-Christ PZ. You really need to post some kind of warning about how many brain cells one may loose reading the decrepit religious fueled bigotry at that site. Here all innocent me, clicks on over to vote and then makes the mistake of reading the first page of comments there. It was like watching a goddamn car accident in slow motion. I couldn’t look away and damn if I’ll ever get those 10 minutes back.

    Wait for it, wait for it. There it was, threw up in my mouth again. Need to go take a shower now.

  180. shiroferetto says

    It’s well up over 80% now. Forget about the troll and go vote if you haven’t yet. ;)

  181. says

    I doubt they even did it to be provocative. I’ve often seen Christmas trees decorated with a specific theme, often one that has little or nothing to do with Christmas, and this isn’t the first time I’ve seen some organization spiff up a tree with their particular area of interest.

    I doubt the GSA said, “Let’s slap all the Christians in the face by making a condom tree to offend them.”

    I think it probably went more like, “I have a fun idea for how we can distribute condoms to students at Christmastime. Wouldn’t a festive condom tree be amusing?”

    And at college, distributing condoms is a good idea, because many college students are horny and stupid.

  182. FlickingYourSwitch says

    Speaking of Christmas trees… what does the Bible say?

    “10:2 Thus saith the LORD, Learn not the way of the heathen, and be not dismayed at the signs of heaven; for the heathen are dismayed at them.
    10:3 For the customs of the people are vain: for one cutteth a tree out of the forest, the work of the hands of the workman, with the axe.
    10:4 They deck it with silver and with gold; they fasten it with nails and with hammers, that it move not.” — Jeremiah

    Oh well, apparently anything is an attack on Christianity. You don’t celebrate the Christian winter holiday? You don’t assume everyone celebrates the same thing you do? Then you’re straight up attacking their religion, their faith and their right to practice it! Weird.

    Why is Christmas itself not an attack on winter solstice, or Yuletide? Why is Christianity not an attack on atheism? Why is it always they who feel attacked when no one is attacking them?

  183. Aquaria says

    Surely every person reading this blog can remember seeing used condoms when they were kids?

    Depends on where you live. I wouldn’t see one until I was living in a city. Before that? Nope. Not a single one. But I lived in the sticks of East Texas.

    Do the xters keep their kids under such tight control that this no longer happens?

    Yep

    Do kids no longer get to wander in parks and woodlands and back alleys?

    Nope

    Is the phrase Lovers Lane unknown to those people?

    Maybe from movies and TV shows they can sneak in watching when their mom’s back is turned. Some kids can never be corralled or controlled. But most of them? Yeah, they’re kept on such a tight leash that they have not one clue about the real world.

    I’ve often seen Christmas trees decorated with a specific theme, often one that has little or nothing to do with Christmas, and this isn’t the first time I’ve seen some organization spiff up a tree with their particular area of interest.

    At a hospital where my mother worked, the staff got a little tipsy during the decorating party for the break room tree, and ended up using hospital supplies to decorate it. The final product was…frightening.

    Never let soused doctors and nurses “get creative.”

    Never.

  184. sc_d1a5e0abbee80c6bf3afc610862d8dd4 says

    Aquaria,

    When I was a kid my father (a doctor) and mother (a nurse) used a nice shiny speculum for the ice tongs at cocktail parties.

  185. D says

    When I was a kid my father (a doctor) and mother (a nurse) used a nice shiny speculum for the ice tongs at cocktail parties.

    Have to keep them cold for the next patient somehow.

  186. says

    Why did I do it? I read through the first 30 comments or so at teh Blaze. Fucking bigots all of them. So much hatred. I feel unclean now.

    Me too. I knew it would be bad, but the compulsion to read futher, I just couldn’t resist.

  187. says

    You know what would’ve been really offensive? Making a map, sticking most of the condoms to Europe and America, sticking red pins in the rest of the map around Africa that are meant to represent AIDS, and have a giant ceramic Pope sitting on Italy, with a painted on Hitler ‘stache, pointing at Africa, with a sign saying “No safe sex for you!” attached near his mouth. And then have a picture of priests raping kids right next to the map. THAT would’ve been offensive. And accurate. Funny, how often that happens.

    Mmmmh! Now that would be an interesting christmas card for someone. Starts InDesign …

  188. says

    I feel like I should get off my lazy ass and write a song for the back pedalers.

    Back pedalin’… WHOOOAAA WHOA WHOOOOAAAA! Back pedaling!

    Okay, I admit, it needs some work.

    How about:

    Back pedlin’
    from my medlin’.
    I first opined
    and then I whined.

    Back pedalin’… WHOOOAAA WHOA WHOOOOAAAA! Back pedaling!

    Sorry, I want to do a second verse, but I have a chrstmas card to design (and I can’t think of a rhyme for fascist).

  189. Brother Ogvorbis, OM . . . Really? says

    (and I can’t think of a rhyme for fascist).

    Racist? Sexist? Misogynist?

  190. Brother Ogvorbis, OM . . . Really? says

    Fair enough, I can not think of anything that rhymes, and would be in context with what benjaminhamilton said.

    I tried for about 15 minutes to use your verse and something that would rhyme and had nothing which, as you say, would be in context.

  191. peterh says

    “Racist? Sexist? Misogynist?”

    Those are too limited; xmas is supposed to be all-inclusive (I heard that somewhere); why not “misanthropist”? It’s even iambic.

  192. Brother Ogvorbis, OM . . . Really? says

    Those are too limited; xmas is supposed to be all-inclusive (I heard that somewhere); why not “misanthropist”? It’s even iambic.

    True, but the backpedaller in question was an idiot who showed up upthread to declare that the condomtree was in bad taste, then refused to elucidate his reasoning, then referred to some or all of the regulars as fascists because his stance (and (more to the point) his refusal to back up his stance) was questioned and ridiculed. And then he claimed to have never had a problem with the condomtree. He was backpaddling faster than a kayaker heading towards Niagara Falls.

  193. No One says

    Benjamin

    I’m wrong for saying putting a condom on a tree might be in bad taste….

    Get your priorities straight. Peoples lives are at stake.

  194. jamessweet says

    I had a friend who was in the Young Republicans a number of years ago (she later swore off the GOP as the party completed its long descent into Crazy Town) and she would have found the condom tree amusing and charming. Just goes to show that virtually every former Republican with a shred of sense in their head has abandoned the party some time in the last decade. Not that Republicans were right in the 90s, they were still evil greedy assholes, but sometime during the Bush Administration they just got sooo crazy….

  195. says

    yeah, I have a condom story from grade 5 or 6 too. A kid in my class found a condom somewhere, I don’t know if it was used or unused. We were standing on a street near the school building, he was filling it with water until it burst. Much fun was had.

    But this was in a country where sexual education was obligatory, and AFAIK with no possibility to opt out.

  196. HaggisForBrains says

    @ #6 evilDoug & 67 Heliantus

    Perhaps if the GSA referred to the condoms as “French letters” the junior GOPers would calm down.

    Shouldn’t that be “Freedom Letters”

  197. kevinjones says

    This tree that has been produced flies in the face of morality, and I am annoyed that someone would think this was a way to spread awareness about HIV. If you have more people having sex outside of marriage it seems like that will help spread HIV rather than stop it. Maybe they should have an abstinance tree. That would actually help the problem.

  198. consciousness razor says

    kevinjones, are you going to be a drive-by troll in all the threads, or do you intend to stick to one at a time?

  199. Rey Fox says

    Maybe they should have an abstinance tree. That would actually help the problem.

    No, actually it wouldn’t. Abstinence-only educational programs are proven failures.

  200. you_monster says

    Maybe they should have an abstinance tree. That would actually help the problem.

    I was going to suggest something like this as a joke. No need to be a poe when a True Idiot is here doing my work for me though.

  201. says

    This tree that has been produced flies in the face of morality,

    nope. it’s perfectly congruent with a non-ideological kind of morality

    If you have more people having sex outside of marriage it seems like that will help spread HIV rather than stop it.

    you think the sight of condoms is making college students have more sex? lol

    Maybe they should have an abstinance tree. That would actually help the problem.

    no it wouldn’t. Abstinence Only programs do not lead to reduction of STD transmission.

  202. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    This tree that has been produced flies in the face of morality,

    Who’s morality troll? Your imaginary deities interpreted through you, or actual morality in reducing AIDS transmission? You sound the one lacking morality to me…

  203. chigau (違う) says

    I don’t think you should say “thingy” in polite company.
    Morality’s flying face and all.

  204. Anri says

    This tree that has been produced flies in the face of morality, and I am annoyed that someone would think this was a way to spread awareness about HIV. If you have more people having sex outside of marriage it seems like that will help spread HIV rather than stop it. Maybe they should have an abstinance tree. That would actually help the problem.

    Oh, please please please come back and be our next troll – we’ve been short on them recently, and we’re hungry!

    Even better, don’t be a troll – come back and actually try to defend this steaming pile you left here.

  205. says

    @Kevinjones, I have to question whether you are even aware that it’s your kind – the sexually uneducated teenage children of christo-fascists – who don’t use condoms and who make up the majority of unwanted teenage pregnancies and teenage STDs.
    Meantime with >87% of votes for free speech I don’t think we’ll hear more more on the subject of the poll result from Beck and cronies.

  206. says

    To be truly biblical, it should be a Foreskin Tree.

    * 1 Samuel 18:25. “And Saul said, Thus shall ye say to David, The king desireth not any dowry, but an hundred foreskins of the Philistines, to be avenged of the king’s enemies.”

    * 1 Samuel 18:27. “Before the time had expired, David rose and went, along with his men, and killed two hundred of the Philistines; and David brought their foreskins, which were given in full number to the king, that he might become the king’s son-in-law.”

    * 2 Samuel 3:14. “Then David sent messengers to Saul’s son Ishbaal, saying, ‘Give me my wife Michal, to whom I became engaged at the price of one hundred foreskins of the Philistines.’”

    * Joshua 5:3. “And Joshua made him sharp knives, and circumcised the children of Israel at the hill of the foreskins.”