Friday, October 30, 2009

I've noted some interesting things in association with a discussion I had over at Vox's, about the appropriateness of making crass and mean-spirited jokes in a public, printed format about someone's dead daughter (a girl that did nothing immoral to merit her brutal death).

1) It's acceptable for a man to critique Vox and to suggest that his behavior is other than what it should be. Heaven forbid a woman do so.

I do wonder what the response would have been had someone with a masculine handle been the one to say something. It was rather frustrating to see some of the responses I got and to see my intent and my words misconstrued (sometimes wildly) solely on the basis of the fact that they were written by a woman.

2) Feelings. Most people seemed to believe that I was trying to make people -feel- badly.

In fact, I had tried to be careful about using language that would suggest I wanted people to modify behavior based on what they felt. My last comment sums up my position fairly well.

Oh, I've laughed about the macabre, The Abe. As you said, that's human nature.

I've not been speaking of feelings, nor suggesting that anyone here needs to feel badly. I've been speaking of behavior. Just because we have the right to free speech, it does not follow that we should say, or more to the point, print, everything we think. Just because we can make jokes about someone's dead daughter being coyote poop (for an example) does not mean that we should - especially in print in a publicly accessible format.

I see nothing wrong with my belief that behavior should be constrained by respect for other people. Perhaps I'm old-fashioned that way.
Edit: I suppose it doesn't hurt to clarify that I believe as Christians, our default behavior when dealing with strangers, acquaintances, friends and family should be respectful. We should continue treating people with respect until they show, through word or action, that such respect is not merited. As Christians, we are also warned about the wickedness of the tongue and the need to keep it restrained.

Thursday, October 29, 2009

I read the Darwin awards occasionally. They make me laugh. I thought it was pretty hysterical when that guy known for working with grizzlies was - surprise - killed by grizzlies. So a part of me responded to the black humor implicit in the headline "Teenage folk singer killed by coyotes" when reading a post about it over at Vox's.

But I take issue with certain things about his post, namely this:

And then of course, when one first reads the headline, it's hard to escape the fleeting thought that there could be an element of divine justice at work there.

As far as I can determine there was no reason why THIS death should have any element of divine justice at work. I simply cannot imagine God taking the time to send coyotes to tear apart a young folk singer when people like Al Gore, Roman Polanski and Susan Smith are still alive and kicking.

I was also seriously irritated by some of the people that commented. Some of them treated it as a great joke. Some of them self-righteously commented about how the girl should have known better than to go alone and unarmed into a wilderness park. (Yeah, because NONE OF THEM have ever done anything naive or stupidly dangerous.) Others used it as an opportunity to flex their manliness and declare that they weren't afeared of no coyote - they would just shoot it, stab it, or tear it apart with their bare hands.

A young woman gets torn apart by wild animals and it's a joke. Clearly, her unprepared naivety was a crime worthy of such a savage ending.

What the hell?

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

I've been musing again, on the subject of men, women and marriage. (What follows may seem somewhat rambling and disjointed, I'm just following the direction of my thoughts with what I'm writing.)

Marriage is meant to represent the union of Yeshua* and the Church. It's no surprise, then, that it has come under such heavy fire and that day by day we see the already vast gap growing between men and women. Both men and women are willing to lay the blame anywhere but on themselves. Both sides are full of bitterness and each accuses the other of being the problem.

My previous post was not meant to lay the blame at the feet of men while absolving women of their responsibility. I'm sorry that it was interpreted that way. Perhaps I can clarify the disorganized and often muddled thoughts behind my post.

What I see, in both Feminism and the Game, is a distorted view of the opposite sex. Feminism views men as chauvinist pigs, potential rapists, bumbling fools and adult-sized children. The Game paints women as whiny, weak, sluts, manipulative and childish. Feminists claim that this is what men naturally are and the Game claims that this is what women naturally are - and each uses this claim to justify the use of their system as 'necessary.'

Now, the men that visit here might say 'but that is what most women really are like!' to which I can only respond that is not how women are supposed to be. A system designed around responding to and manipulating women in their current, broken state is not going to help bring men and women back together, to make them partners exemplifying the relationship of Yeshua with the Church - the same way that Feminism could never 'fix' men via legislation.

Men and women have both been severely crippled in the last few decades, but the problem predates the rise of Feminism. There was an excellent article linked through Ladies Against Feminism at one point, showing how the family has been systematically torn down - first by removing men from the home before the advent of Feminism and afterward by removing women from the home, via Feminism. The result was to leave children exposed and vulnerable without the protective influence of their parents. (John Taylor Gatto's Underground History of American Education exposes some of the human actions that helped bring the family to its knees.)

Now, I don't want to mimic Eve here and lay the blame at Satan's doorstep. All of us are responsible for our participation in actions that run counter to God's will. The only solution is to once again fix our feet on the path of righteousness and keep our eyes on God. This does not include supporting systems or attitudes that will only cause the rift between men and women to widen. Feminism and the Game have something in common - both are about dominating the other sex through manipulation. The method of manipulation is different but the result is the same - destruction and decay.

Now, I'm mentally cycling through the men in the Bible, and there are a lot of examples of what I would call 'real men' there. Enoch, Noah, Moses, Joshua, Samuel, David, Solomon, Elijah - but the common theme in the lives of these 'real men' is not how they dealt with women, but the fact that they all strove to follow God and to walk in His ways. In fact, it was when they took their eyes off God and started focusing on women that they got into trouble. David committed adultery with Bathsheba and the first son she bore him died because of it. Solomon took foreign wives and was drawn into the worship of false gods and the size of the kingdom his descendants inherited was vastly reduced.

Paul stated that it was better to marry than to burn with passion - but he also exhorted Christians not to be bound together with unbelievers. If a man cannot find a godly woman he's better off with no woman at all.

I guess what I've been trying to say is that I believe it is much better for a man to focus on being what God wants him to be, than in focusing on what a woman needs him to be. The latter is unlikely to happen without the former, and focusing on the former will make the latter simply an incidental result.

*I just like using Yeshua better than Jesus or Christ. Perhaps because Yeshua is not used as profanity.

Thursday, October 22, 2009

The man said,
"This is now bone of my bones,
And flesh of my flesh;
She shall be called Woman,
Because she was taken out of Man."

This post is on a subject that's been simmering in my head for a while now. I'm concerned about the reaction men are having to feminism and women. I've seen everything from disdain to bitterness to hatred or all of the above and then some.

Don't misunderstand me, feminism should be disdained. It's a terrible system. But for a man to blame women for the current woes of the world (and for the state of his love life) is to ignore men and their part in our current fiasco.

It's the story of Adam all over again. Eve falls to temptation, brings the forbidden fruit to Adam, who willingly partakes of that fruit but then refuses to take responsibility for his action and instead seeks to heap the blame on Eve.

Women rebelled against and usurped the authority of men because men abdicated their authority and abandoned their responsibilities. Men desired Delilah, pursued her and gave her the secret of their strength.

Men are now realizing what they have lost, but instead of examining their own hearts and owning up to their own failings, they instead pin the blame on women. Patriarchy, the game, PUA - none of these are answers for godly men that desire to live by Biblical principles. All they will do is to further widen the rift between men and women because none of them focus on the real problem. All of them point to women as the object of blame while ignoring the role of men.

I've seen plenty of articles written about women and the need to be submissive. Quoted with frequency are these words from Ephesians 5:

Wives, be subject to your own husbands, as to the Lord. For the husband is the head of the wife, as Christ also is the head of the church, He Himself being the Savior of the body. But as the church is subject to Christ, so also the wives ought to be to their husbands in everything.

But this is what directly follows:

Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ also loved the church and gave Himself up for her, so that He might sanctify her, having cleansed her by the washing of water with the word, that He might present to Himself the church in all her glory, having no spot or wrinkle or any such thing; but that she would be holy and blameless. So husbands ought also to love their own wives as their own bodies. He who loves his own wife loves himself; for no one ever hated his own flesh, but nourishes and cherishes it, just as Christ also does the church, because we are members of His body.

By treating women as an enemy, someone to be manipulated and coerced, men are simply setting themselves up for failure. The man that treats his wife, or prospective wife, this way is warring against his own flesh. A house divided against itself cannot stand.

For the men that are interested in whether or not things like the Game are applicable to their own life, I would beg you: please compare what those men are saying to what is said in the scripture. I guarantee you that the Bible provides a much better model for how to treat women and on which to pattern your own relationships.

Love is patient, love is kind and is not jealous;
love does not brag and is not arrogant, does not act unbecomingly;
it does not seek its own, is not provoked, does not take into account a wrong suffered, does not rejoice in unrighteousness, but rejoices with the truth;
bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things.
Love never fails...

Sunday, October 18, 2009

I can't say that Jamaica has ever been high on my list of places to visit, but I stumbled across this picture while doing a google image search and thought how nice it would be to have my own little cottage and tiny private beach!

Thursday, October 08, 2009

I think the British singer Dido has a beautiful voice. Thus, I enjoy listening to her song White Flag for the vocals and the melody, but the lyrics greatly diminish that enjoyment. Here's a sample:

I know I left too much mess
And destruction to come back again
And I caused but nothing but trouble
I understand if you can't talk to me again
And if you live by the rules of "It's over"
Then I'm sure that that makes sense

Well I will go down with this ship
And I won't put my hands up and surrender
There will be no white flag above my door

I'm in love and always will be

Translation: I selfishly ruined our relationship - and now I won't let you go!

Modern Western woman at her finest, no?

Monday, October 05, 2009

Infancy: the one time in your life when you can be covered in fat rolls, wearing diapers and drooling all over yourself and people think you're adorable!

Friday, October 02, 2009

I have no idea how to write this post without seeming like a big jerk.

I know, Athor Pel, that you were trying to be helpful and I really appreciate that you took the time to post resources for my attention. The only thing I had a quarrel with was that you chose to reiterate Vox's belief that "If you put your children in public school then you do not love your children. "

Please understand that no offense is meant to you, Athor Pel, when I say that Vox can take that belief and shove it where the sun don't shine.

The only being in the universe capable of perfect love is the great I AM.

The rest of us are imperfect and do not always choose our actions based on love. Sometimes fear is the motivating factor, sometimes pride, sometimes sloth or jealousy or anger.

I know that our children are the apple of my husband's eye. I have seen him mature greatly in the five years since our oldest son was born and I know that fatherhood was the catalyst for much of that change. I know that he loves them and (at this point) believes that he is doing what is best for them by intending to put them in public school.

I don't believe that it is an easy thing for any man to hear his wife disagree with him and I think that if they were honest, most men would admit that their first reaction is to defend themselves and desire to prove that they are right, not carefully consider the chance that they might be wrong.