Daily archives: December 21st, 2009

It’s a Sign! Christians Can Be Downright Nasty Around Christmas

Jesus and the Census

I always think of Monty Python’s Life Of Brian when I read about organizations getting charged with blasphemy.

Yes, blasphemy.

So I had to chuckle when I read Greg Tajeda’s latest at Chicago Argus. Greg reports that the Joliet Jackhammers have posted a sign that reads, “BUY JACKHAMMERS TICKETS TODAY! – God.”

That’s quite an endorsement.

As you can imagine, there are people who are quite offended by this specious use of the divine. The Jackhammers have a disclaimer on their Web page indicating “people who buy a season ticket package during the month of December can have the ballclub donate a portion of the purchase price to any church or religious organization the fan chooses,” according to Tajeda. The National Associaton of Latino Elected Officials (NALEO), however, seems to have taken things a step further with their call to participate in the 2010 census. After all, “This is how Jesus was born,” an ad from the group claims.

From Chicago Argus:

IN THE CASE of the NALEO, they are trying to encourage Latinos to realize they should take it seriously next year when the Census Bureau sends them a form so they can be included in the official population count. For the Jackhammers, they’re trying to sell season tickets for 2010.

How does religion get involved in either of these “causes?”

For NALEO, they cited portions of the New Testament that would indicate that Joseph and Mary were headed to Bethlehem so they could be included in something resembling a modern-day Census, which would mean the baby Jesus was born just in time to be counted.

Their advertisements literally tell us, “This is how JESUS was born,” and adds later, “Don’t be afraid.”

NALEO IS ONE of about 136,000 groups cooperating with the Census Bureau to try to get as accurate a count as possible in the Census, which officially records how many people are living in the United States on April 1, 2010.

I’m not going to parse this any further. I simply see too many Christians who get wildly offended at alleged attempts on the part of — you name it: society, the media, atheists, the Left, the Right, liberals, Hollywood, government (local and federal) — to take the CHRIST out of CHRISTMAS.

Hogwash.  Christmas is what happens when you and your family get together and celebrate.  It’s what happens when you and your family go to Church on Christmas Eve or Christmas Day.  Christmas is what happens when you and your family and friends exchange gifts, wish each other well, or pray for each other and help the less fortunate during this holiday season.

Sorry.  During this CHRISTmas season.

Nobody can steal your Christmas.  Nobody.  So get over it.

Some Christians can be downright rude during the Christmas season. Look, it’s not happening. There is no war on Christmas.

NALEO probably used bad judgment, but blasphemy?

I don’t think so.

Remember, this Christmas season (no, I’m not saying “holiday season” for a reason here), the big message is “Peace on Earth, good will to all.”

Please be sure to participate in the 2010 census. And the Joliet Jackhammers are awesome.

Merry Christmas.

Michael Jordan Sues Jewel, Dominick’s for Using His Name, No. 23 to Sell Steaks

Wow. This was just incredibly bad judgment on the part of Jewel and Dominick’s.

From the Sun-Times:

Michael Jordan is suing Chicago’s two big grocery chains, Jewel and Dominick’s, claiming they used his good name and his good number — 23 — to sell steaks and other goods without his permission.

According to the suit, filed Monday in Cook County Circuit Court: “Jordan brings these claims for violation of the right of publicity, false endorsement, false designation of origin, deceptive business practices, and unfair competition against” Jewel-Osco and Dominick’s.

In both cases, the grocery store chains had advertisements in a commemorative Sports Illustrated issue congratulating him on this year’s induction in to the basketball Hall of Fame, according to the suit.

According to the suit, the Dominick’s ad featured Jordan’s name and number with the phrase “You are a cut above” and a photo of a steak.

Below the congratulations is an ad for $2 off a Rancher’s Reserve steak. In the case of Jewel, Jordan takes issue with a full-page magazine ad that congratulates him on the Hall of Fame honor.

The pair of basketball shoes, with a number 23 on the tongues, “appear to be an inaccurate and misleading copy of Air Jordan basketball shoes, which are the subject of an endorsement agreement between Jordan and Nike, Inc.

I would not want to wrestle with Michael Jordan in the courts.

Read more at the Sun-Times.

Salvation Army Still Hostile to Gays and Lesbians

I don’t vote on one issue, but I won’t donate to organizations that are hostile to people and organizations I support.

The Salvation Army is openly hostile to our gay and lesbian friends, and they won’t get a penny from me this holiday season.

From Lisa Neff at 365Gay.com:

Many, many good people — my friends and neighbors — ring the bell for the Salvation Army during December.

And many, many good people — my friends and neighbors — donate to the Salvation Army’s red kettles during December.

But I do not. I do not ring the bell for the Salvation Army. I do not donate to the Salvation Army, because the Salvation Army discriminates against gays and lesbians in employment, works to defeat civil rights measures that protect gays and lesbians and promotes position that gay relationships “do not conform to God’s will for society.”

Some will say, but the Salvation Army performs good work — the organization feeds the hungry, shelters the homeless, clothes the impoverished, whether gay or straight.

Yes, yet there are many other organizations performing the same work as the Salvation Army that do not discriminate against gays and lesbians, that will not use your donation against you.

From the Salvation Army’s Web site: “The Army regards the origins of a homosexual orientation as a mystery and does not regard a homosexual disposition as blameworthy in and of itself or rectifiable at will. Nevertheless, while we are not responsible for what we are, we are accountable for what we do; and homosexual conduct, like heterosexual conduct, is controllable and may be morally evaluated therefore in light of scriptural teaching.

“For this reason, such practices, if unrenounced, render a person ineligible for Salvation Army soldiership.”

I can find a charity more worthy of the stray dollar in my pocket.

As do I. There are more worthy charities out there.

Ben Roethlisberger Throws for 503 Yards Sunday Against Green Bay

Ben Roethlisberger set a franchise record Sunday throwing 503 yards against the Green Bay Packers. It took a final drive right out of last year’s Super Bowl to give Pittsburgh the 37-36 victory.

It was amazing.

From the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette:

The Steelers tried every which way to get back to winning football games before they went back to an old favorite, the drive that delivered them a victory in Super Bowl XLIII.

With their coach admitting in so many words and deeds he had lost all faith in his defense to stop the Green Bay Packers, the offense drove 86 yards on 12 plays and squeezed every last second of the clock to do so to deliver a 37-36 victory at Heinz Field.

This time it was not Santonio Holmes toe-tapping in the right side of the end zone for the winner, but rookie Mike Wallace catching a 19-yard pass with both toes barely in bounds with no time left. That tied the score, Jeff Reed’s kick won it and, while it did not deliver another Lombardi Trophy, it put a five-game losing streak out of their misery.

“We’re not dead yet,” Steelers coach Mike Tomlin declared. “We have a little pulse here.”

Indeed, the Steelers cling precariously to contention for a wild-card playoff berth with a 7-7 record, but the reality of their chances can hold for another day. That they put their finger in the dike that was near dissolution was reason alone for them to celebrate last night.

“I think we went through a whole range of emotions [last night],” linebacker James Farrior said.

The fourth quarter alone featured four touchdowns and two field goals in the kind of fastbreak game rarely seen in Heinz Field. In fact, a lot that occurred yesterday rarely had been seen at all in Pittsburgh.

Roethlisberger’s 503 yards passing set a franchise record and he became the third quarterback in NFL history to top 500 yards with three touchdowns and no interceptions. Hines Ward had 126 yards and Heath Miller 118, both on seven catches.

It had been weeks since I felt the urge to pick up a Terrible Towel, but last night I  clutched it like a security blanket during the Steelers’ last drive. The final touchdown pass, with no time left on the clock, was a piece of art.

Read more here at the Post-Gazette.

Withers: Drunken Husband of State Sen. Heather Steans Goes to Gay Bar to Harass Rival

You can’t make this stuff up.

From 365Gay.com:

Let’s start this Christmas week with some crazy family mess from Illinois. Jim Madigan, an openly gay Illinois politician, wants to unseat 7th District State Sen. Heather Stearns. No problem there unless you are Stearns’ husband, Leo Smith. Last week the challenger held a fundraiser in a gay bar called The Call. Madigan was minding his business, doing what pols do when they want you to open up your wallet, and who shows up? Leo Smith.

Now don’t go crazy. Smith is not living life on the down low. He spent an hour drinking at the bar, another ten minutes in the bathroom (baby, I don’t even want to know) and then decided to go up to Madigan and tell him about himself.

“I’m not here for your event! I know you think you’re gonna get famous with all your bull***t! But those things are about me.”

The two men went back and forth, talking about everything from ex-Gov. Rod Blagojevich to gay rights. Smith doesn’t think Madigan has a gay rights record that is worth anything. A strange charge against a guy who was director of Equality Illinois.

Probably not the best move for your wife’s campaign.

"Alcohol – the cause of, and solution to, all of life’s problems." – Homer Simpson

Mexico City Assembly Changes Definition of Marriage

From NPR:

Mexico City lawmakers on Monday made the city the first in Latin America to legalize same-sex marriage, a change that will give homosexual couples more rights, including allowing them to adopt children.

The bill passed the capital’s local assembly 39-20 to the cheers of supporters who yelled, “Yes, we could! Yes, we could!”

Leftist Mayor Marcelo Ebrard of the Democratic Revolution Party is widely expected to sign the measure into law.

The bill calls for changing the definition of marriage in the city’s civil code. Marriage is currently defined as the union of a man and a woman. The new definition will be “the free uniting of two people.”

The change would allow same-sex couples to adopt children, apply for bank loans together, inherit wealth and be included in the insurance policies of their spouse, rights they were denied under civil unions allowed in the city.

Read more here.

Obama Will Win: Why and How His Critics from the Left and Right Will be Proven Wrong

Wise words from Frank Schaeffer.

I love Crazy for God. I intend to read Patience with God: Faith for People Who Don’t Like Religion (or Atheism).

I like Frank.

From The Brad Blog:

Before he’d served even one year President Obama lost the support of the easily distracted Left and engendered the white hot rage of the hate-filled Right. But some of us, from all walks of life and ideological backgrounds — including this white, straight, 57-year-old, former religious Rightwing agitator, now progressive writer and (given my background as the son of a famous evangelical leader) this unlikely Obama supporter — are sticking with our President. Why? Because he is succeeding.

We faithful Obama supporters still trust our initial impression of him as a great, good and uniquely qualified man to lead us.

Obama’s steady supporters will be proven right. Obama’s critics will be remembered as easily panicked and prematurely discouraged at best and shriveled hate mongers at worst…

Read the rest of the commentary here.