Crocodile Trumper Tears and Dead Syrian Children

Photo originally from TheWire as printed by the Atlantic.

Why are you crying, Trump supporter?

I mean, I know why I’m crying, but I’m just a bit confused. You seem genuinely shocked by the brutality in Syria, truly surprised by the unthinkable horror of it all. You shouldn’t be. You should have seen it coming.

This is merely a few God-awful miles down the track of the “Trump Train.”
It is the cancerous growth of Make America Great Again,

of Muslim Travel Bans,
of “bomb the sh*t out of them” tough guy talk,
of religious stereotypes created to rally your base,
of building walls and closing borders,
of “get out of my country,”

of perpetuating the fear of brown people.

This is the human collateral damage of what Donald Trump’s been selling for 16 months now. It is the cost in actual vibrant, beautiful lives, of the kind of incendiary rhetoric and alternative facts and FoxNews truths that you’ve been fine with up until now. This is what you bought and paid for. Maybe not something this sadistic or explicitly grotesque, but the heart is the same: contempt for life that looks different and a desire to rid yourself of it.

I want to believe that you’re truly outraged, but honestly your resume is less than convincing.

Honestly, you didn’t seem all that broken up when Muslim families were handcuffed in airports a couple of months ago, or when mosques were being defaced, or when many of us were pleading the case for families fleeing exactly the kind of monstrous atrocities you were apparently so moved by this week—and getting told to eat our bleeding hearts out by MAGA hat-wearing trolls. You weren’t all that concerned when your President told terrified, exhausted refugees to leave and go home—twice.

You can’t have it both ways. You can’t kiss the ring of a bad guy and then get to be the hero by feeling sorry about what other worse guys do. You don’t get to tell people to “go back where they came from,” and then beat your breasts like tortured martyrs when they get poisoned to death back where they came from.  

Your tears may as well be candy bars to these dead children. They’re that useful to them now and they’re that helpful to any of us who’ve been fighting for months to have good people in Syria and Iran and Turkey and here in America to be treated like human beings; whether they’re Muslim or gay or Transgender or poor or sick.

You want to be outraged in a way that matters, in a way that sticks, in a way that saves other children, in a way that is redemptive?

Be outraged at a President who plays patty-cake with malevolent dictators,
who says whatever hateful nonsense comes into his head,
who daily murders the truth to justify his misdeeds.
Be outraged at partisan media that insists on manufacturing Muslin monsters for the good Christian folks here to fear and feel righteous in turning away.
Be outraged at the bullies wielding their pulpits and their majority votes like sledgehammers against people of color both here and abroad.
Be outraged at your own laziness and apathy when it comes to looking for the truth and ferreting out what is real and what isn’t.
Be outraged that Donald Trump is lamenting the “poor dead babies,” he once said he would look in the face and tell to go home.
Be outraged that America is becoming as intolerant of diversity as any country on the planet.

Maybe this is a turning point for you. Maybe it is a revelation. Maybe seeing video of quivering, dying toddlers is what it will take to finally make you see that this is what hatred does. Every. Single. Time. This is the only inevitable outcome of people like Donald Trump and his cadre of fear-peddlers, pretending to save the world from the monsters they’ve created just to slay. A unilateral, hastily planned, ill-conceived, and transparently political military strike won’t cover this truth: we’re acting in supposed defense of children we refused sanctuary on our shores, after they were subjected to unspeakable violation in the place we sent them back to. 

The violence in Syria is heartbreaking and inhumane and clearly a blatant act of aggression against humanity—but it doesn’t happen in a vacuum and it isn’t an isolated event. It is cultivated in a million smaller, quieter, less visible ways, and its impact is equally brutal, whether it happens thousands of miles away with chemical weapons or whether it’s wrapped in red, white, and blue and called a Travel Ban. It’s all the same horrible, vicious poison that destroys people by making them into a threat. 

I’m not interested in your tears unless those tears move you to pushback forcefully against the violence happening in Syria and in Chicago, against terrorists and dictators and religious extremists wherever they do what they do and whatever faith tradition they claim. Yes Assad and Putin are the worst kind of horrible inhumanity and they should be condemned and opposed, but let’s stop pretending we don’t see the similarities here at home—if not in severity, then in spirit.

Be equally outraged at all the horrors human beings inflict upon each other, and then we’ll be grieving over the same tragedy and fighting the same fight.

 

1,277 thoughts on “Crocodile Trumper Tears and Dead Syrian Children

  1. I totally agree. Your thoughts are the same as mine. I cannot believe we’ll bomb a country but not welcome the people we’re supposedly trying to help. No words, it’s unreal.

    • My thoughts exactly, Katie. I keep wondering when somebody is going to jump out from the background and yell, “You’re on Candid Camera!” Because, this can’t be real. This can’t be what is happening, what we’re doing and where we’re going. Thank God for people such as you and John.

    • We Welcome them , NOT thier Godless Religeon which has no respect for life and would turn on you and your family in an instant to achieve the inmans goal , domination, control, lust , Make no mistake this is a Judgement from rebellion against God.
      NO matter if you agree or disagree, the fact is , they have killed thier whole life and will always kill as a way of life.
      We as americas believe in the santity of life and you are free to make your own decisions.
      Thiers if like facism. only some stupid inman can determine how , what , where they go.
      YOU anyone is welcome as long as you obey the Rules, life like our way of life , and get under US authority or go back to what you left.
      YOU think this is harsh, So is Murder, Rape, Stealing,
      God has Standards so it protect Nations.

      • If you really under stood the Muslim religion you would not have written that Christopher. It is the extremist who have put the hate into it – just as many “Christian” people in this country have done for Christianity. It is along fought battle since the beginning of organized religion. There are those who really practice out of Love. Then there are those that turn the words around in hate – hate of difference.
        I challenge you to read the Quoran – with an open mind – then say the same from your heart. The Quoran actually mirrors the Christian Bible – The same stories from a different view point. At least from what I’ve read and from conversations with loving Muslim friends

        • S.R. you are wasting bandwidth trying, that is a closed, frightened, ignorant mind, that is best ignored. Think raving proselytizer on a street corner and move on. He does not want to understand even the Scripture he reads in the Bible, much less the Quran.

          • Which might be true, Anon, if Christianity and Christians had a history of obeying Jesus perfectly.

            But alas that’s not the case. Christianity and its members have at times convinced themselves of the virtue of atrocities. From, and this is just a sample, slavery to the near genocide of the Native Americans, to Jim Crow to the Holocaust to the actions of the KKK to blowing up abortion clinics (sorry, it’s an act of terrorism) to shooting up and blowing up black churches to a recent act of terrorism in NYC involving a white supremacist to the terrorist attack in Quebec.

            And I wonder what would have been the result if the middle ages from the 5th to the 15th century would have been like if they had modern accouterments like airplanes and modern guns and missiles and bombs.

            You know..back when Christianity was tearing itself and Europe and the rest of the “known” world apart.

            There is no religion that doesn’t have blood on its hands. There is no religion that has been free from the actions of zealots, fanatics and oh yeah..terrorists. After all…religion is oh such a convenient
            raison d’être to justify demeaning, oppression, persecution, mayhem, violence, and oh yeah…death.

            Oh and painting all Muslims as evil or the enemy only gives the actual terrorists what they want. Groups like ISIL dearly want the narrative to be “The west vs all of Islam.” That is their most desperate wet dream. And to give them that..to turn their wet dream into reality is nothing short of giving into terror and committing treason. Because it lets them use us to recruit more terrorists. Which is why Gropenfuhrer has quickly become one of ISIL’s greatest recruiting tools.

              • why separate? You do realize that in Islam, Jesus is considered a prophet. The old testament is followed. The new testament is also part of their learning. According to them the third and final part was written by Mohammed. But the words he wrote were supposed to be from the same God who used prophets to write the old testament.
                Why look at the prophets instead of the books? It’s not like Jesus wrote his own book. It’s not like Christians always follow his path. It’s really a rare Christian that even makes an attempt. Islam is a branch of Abrahamic religion. Allah = our God.
                the vast majority of Islamists know Christians as brothers, per the Q’ran. NOT as Infidels. The vast majority concentrate on the LARGE Jihad … the war of good and evil within an individual’s soul. It is the small Jihad to convert neighbors.
                It is the small Jihad that ISIL utilizes while they bastardize the Q’ran. When they identify all westerners as Infidel. When our own religion of love rises up to hate their brothers in Islam. Who wins when religions of love are warped to hate and responded to by hate? They do. If you turn the other cheek, you validate the mainstream Muslim’s view of western civilization. If you serve back hate, you validate ISIL’s.
                Think. Just. Think.

                  • So what? None of the writ3ers of the Hebrew Scriptures were God. None of the writers of the Christian Scriptures were God. Jesus never wrote a word.

                    Mohammed and all of Islam worship the exact same God as do Jews and Christians.

                    Have you even bothered to read the Q’ran, or are you just speaking out of your usual ignorance and lack of information?

                    • Look at the life of Mohammad. [A murderer, polygamist, violent army general, that pilloried everything in site, and won ‘converts’ by capturing innocents, and annexed (very poorly) the bible for his own gain. ]

                      If you’re going to pick some one to follow, Jesus is a much better pick than Mohammad.

                    • It is obvious you are speaking out of your ignorance and that’s a shame. Perhaps you should go back and study Christianity, Islam and Judaism. Muslims believe that Mohammed was higher in rank than Jesus. Jews don’t even consider Jesus to be part of their religion. And if you know anything about Christianity, Jesus was God in the human flesh. If both of those religions don’t even consider Jesus as significant (whereas in Christianity Jesus is God in the flesh), not sure how you are comparing them as one in the same.

                    • Well Liz, if comparing the Abrahamic Religions is something you reject, I have to say it is your obvious ignorance that is showing.

                    • This whole article is nothing but ignorance blaming this bs on trump and white people if that’s not racist what is you all are dumb asses and don’t deserve to call yourselves Americans

                  • Jesus was also a practicing Jew who never heard the word, “Christian” in his lifetime, yet his followers have made a centuries old practice of persecuting Jews in the most horrific ways. Be careful what you attribute to anyone.

                    • Liz, If one of us is speaking out ignorance, it is you.

                      My BA is Biblical and Theological Studies.

                      My MA is in Church History

                      However, ***you*** evidently can’t read as your comments have nothing to do with what I actually said.

                      Whatever differences the three religions have, it is an indisputable fact that all three of them worship the same God as all three religions claim the Hebrew Scriptures as part of their religion. God is the same yesterday, today, tomorrow. God is God whether worshipped by Jews, Christians, or Muslims.

                      That is the only point I am making.

                      Maybe people would stop being so terrified of Muslims if they stopped to consider that they love God as much as we Christians assert that we do.

                    • Muslims do not see God as “father” but as “master.” They think we blaspheme Allah when we call God “Father,” which makes some of them very angry.

                    • Seriously Joe, you have more than enough problem explaining your own religion, leave Islam alone.

                    • Dr. Scott Hahn, Fr. Michael Scanlan Chair in Biblical Theology, spoke to Franciscan University of Steubenville’s 2011 Defending the Faith Conference “Ambassadors for Christ” on “Abba or Allah:The Difference it Makes.” “For the last quarter of a century,” said Dr. Hahn, “I have shared a conviction with a growing number of people that Islam really does represent the single greatest force of the third millennium and also the single greatest challenge and threat to Christianity worldwide.” Dr. Hahn explains the very different conceptions of God in Islam (as Allah, Master) and in Christianity (as Abba, Father) and their consequences for life, religion, and interreligious encounters. “There’s a profound difference between slavery and sonship,” Hahn declared. “Until the sons of God outserve the slaves of God, Christianity is going to continue to dissolve.”

                      http://www.faithandreason.com/2013/06/abba-or-allah-the-difference-it-makes/

                • why are you pushing back on someone who is trying to spread the light? Maybe they aren’t wording it exactly the way you would like, but save your words for those that totally don’t understand and need your light.

                  • What is really sad is that Joe ignores or is ignorant of the reasons Allah is not referred to as ‘father.” Not saying I think they have good or bad reasons, but their reasons emphasis he is the Creator, people are creatures who need parents but God does not.

                    “Quran says:
                    “Say: He is Allah,the One and Only;
                    Allah, the Eternal, Absolute;
                    He begetteth not, nor is He begotten;
                    And there is none like unto Him. ” Quran 112
                    Almighty Allah is above having mother and father, relatives or wife.Quran denies the divinity of those who have offspring and parents and equals; and it is to show that they are not worthy of being worshipped.Almighty Allah is above all relations which suggest giving birth and being born. He is exempt from having any partners, helpers, or fellows. His relations with all beings are those of Creator. He creates through His pre-eternal will with the command of “Be!,” and it is. He is far beyond having any relation which is contrary to perfection, or is compelling, necessitating, or involuntary.Almighty Allah is pre-eternal and post-eternal, He is the First and the Last. Neither in His essence, nor in His attributes, nor in His actions, has He in any way any equal, peer, like, or match, or anything similar, resembling, or analogous to Him. Only, in His acts, there may be comparisons expressing similarity.

                    https://www.islamicboard.com/clarifications-about-islam/134303513-allah-father.html

                  • “Dr. Scott Hahn, Fr. Michael Scanlan Chair in Biblical Theology”

                    Ha! Scott Hahn. I went to seminary with him where he was well know for being a self-righteous, self-satisified prig of an extreme Calvinist.

                    He really should have zero credibility in the RCC

                    • He’s a Catholic now and has been for over 25 years. His studies let him to convert to Catholicism. I met his wife who was very nice and very humble I and heard Dr. Hahn speak and he also came across that way. The link I posted leads to a talk he did and I don’t think anyone who hears it would think he comes across as a “prig.”

                      Dr. Hahn has much credibility in the RCC, btw, at least he does in the US. Listening to his conversion story is one reason I became a Catholic (but not the only reason).

                    • Anyone willing to malign, mislead and feed the fear of Islam has much credibility in the Roman Catholic Church and most churches in America. That is a big part of the problem.

      • I guess you haven’t been in inner city America then where there is numerous killings each and everyday. But I guess that doesn’t count! Refugees come here for a better life for themselves and their children. They are fleeing their homeland because of persecution. I would challenge you to get to know your refugee neighbors, it might even surprise you to learn that these people are well educated and have a lot to offer.

        • Sherry, I would challenge him to get to know the God he claims to worship, he does not seem to have made it out of the Old Testament yet. Thanks for trying, but this is a hopeless case!

          • Even the Old Testament preaches God’s steadfast love and faithfulness. He needs to get to know the God revealed in Christ, who is the same God as the one in the Old Testament.

        • Spot on, I have and they are. I also grew up along the east coast where there were lots of immigrants from all over Europe and the Mid east and I knew a lot of them, some were Muslim, some of the loveliest, smartest people I have known. This business of lumping people together is ignorant. Peace

        • you are putting every single refuge into the same box, they are all unique and that being said some hate American values and have an agenda to take them down. There is no argument in that at all, it is happening all over the world and they are doing it in the name of religion to random people.

          Inner cities have their own issues and most people stay out of it so it only effects the people who live there, like myself for example. I live in the “inner city” and deal with crime often, mostly theft. If I had to deal with radical Islamists trying to destroy my lively hood I would lose my mind and go to war with them and so would many Americans, just like they are starting to to in Europe due to their being way more radical Muslims there and just by geographical default they get a larger percent of refugees, its not a simple coincidence that there is a extreme difference between numbers of attacks in the USA and in various countries in Europe.

          So you are right, there are good refuges that are great people, I know many. There are also bad ones. That’s life, that’s ying and yang, and furthermore, news stories EVERDAY prove it. You need to open your mind and accept the 2nd part of your story and not turn a blind eye to it, the whole picture may not be pretty of offended you but it does not matter, its still the truth.

      • Really, your spelling shows just how ignorant you ARE..,
        You should really research., learn and then maybe you would be able to put up an intelligent reply to questions that come through this blog..
        Do your research as I said and see who backed Assad and his Regime, where he received his Armory, where is got money to do the things he does. Gee, how high up the ladder would the States and Republicans be and yes some hawkish Democrats as well. The States should be ashamed, they are no better than the “IMAMS, THE FASCIST, THE TSARS, THE NAZI’S and all those who promote and carry out such hate.
        I find it even more bizarre and funny that you would say, Americans believe in the Sanctity of LIfe, ha.ha..when you have so many States that still put people to death in the name of Justice., Grow up and do your homework and stop waving that tainted flag so high., you embarrass yourself..

        • Because nothing says, your opinion doesn’t matter as much as poor spelling. You are a total ass, wrapped in a shit bag.

          • And you, “That Guy” prove that spelling cannot improve evil thinking. Crawl back under your rock with that act!

        • If you’re going to down someone about their spelling, maybe you should read your own passage for grammatical errors before submitting it. You guys get so heated and start typing quickly, not realizing the errors because your brain is going faster than your fingers.

        • Very good points, but I would encourage you to focus on educating, instead of criticizing and degrading, otherwise you are still sending hate.

          Sending you love and blessings!

      • Godless religion?!?! Seriously?!! Are you kidding right now? Did you READ the article you are commenting on? Muslim is a religion just like every other religion. A minority of people hide behind religion to do evil things. One of those ‘evil’ things is to hate other people because of their religion. Ridiculous

        • Nancy, he is not all there IMO. Of course Islam is a religion, it is even a religion from the Bible. Abraham, Jesus, Mary etc are in the Quran. He is a dangerous religious zealot. The Christian Right is crazy for their dishonesty and discrimination against Islam. It is our only real hope for peace.

      • We’ve dropped tens of thousands of bombs in Syria. We provided chemical weapons to Saddam Hussein in the 1980s (to use against Iran). We invaded Iraq, a country who did NOTHING to us, based on lies. We help Saudi Arabia attack and starve the people of Yemen. And you have the nerve to claim that our country( and “Christian”religion) values the sanctity of human life??!!

        • Yes Suzanne, you are right. Our hypocrisy knows no bounds. The same folks calling us “baby killers” support many bombs being dropped on innocent babies all over the world. Even back to Hiroshima and Nagasaki. We should be ashamed, not proud.

        • Not to mention all of the innocent POC that have been murdered by police and right wing so called christians right here in the US

        • I agree, Suzanne. Christian from birth, I’m ashamed of what the so called American Christian Church is now. If it weren’t for ministers like Dr William Barber or Christian writers like that down to earth and real Anne LaMott, I’d turn sour on the entire idea that there is a Christian church in America. This guy who sees the murder of innocents as God’s punishment has had no experience of God. He’s tortured himself although he may not even be aware of it. Scared of a god that doesn’t even exist except in his mind and in the mind of many who call themselves Christians. Sad.

      • I have done training with teachers in Palestine, most of whom are Muslim. They respect and admire Jesus. They are loving and caring human beings, sharing with Christians many of the same values. I am a Christian, and they welcomed me. I urge you to look behind the stereotypes, which are false. The majority of Muslims have more in common with Christians than they do with ISIS, and the majority of Christians have more in common with Muslims than they do the whites who lynched blacks in the South for the mere crime of not being white. Extremism is dangerous and the same everywhere. It isn’t restricted to a single religion or political party. Jesus, our example, loved both the Jew and Samaritan. We need to do the same.

      • I can’t wait until you get to heaven and try to explain this to Jesus. Last time I checked He was the only one who could pass judgement, when did you get elevated to God like status of judgement and jury.

      • I would agree with you if you are a Native American describing the genocide by so-called Christians, who paid for Native scalps (not quite as much for the babies and children). Or locked them away from their parents and families in boarding schools

      • Your judgment is based on ignorance. Any and all religions are subject to interpretation. If you want to believe the worst then you will… by your reasoning I am a hypocritical judgemental Christian because that’s what the general population thinks about Christianity and I was a part of it for many years… or better yet because I grew up in poor that I’ll always be poor white trash… we are all human beings and individual and deserve the same consideration as any other human being…
        One person does not represent all people, just as one religion does not. … narrow minded thinking produces nothing good…

      • I am curious how people who think like this can call themselves Christians and think you going to heaven spewing all that hatred. Regardless of what you see in pictures, your beloved Jesus,by virtue of his place of birth, was one of the very people that you gleefully declare are deserving of such inhumane treatment. In case you haven’t noticed,THEY ARE KILLING BABIES!
        None of these children participated or were born on 9/11.
        I find it funny that if you are a minority you are labeled with the same broad stroke of the worst of you, but white Americans can never do no wrong? You need to ACTUALLY read that WHOLE bible you love thumping when it suits you and get you some morals and a sense of decency and compassion about you.

        Now you go on and have a blessed day!

      • Christopher, Maybe you should go back in history and there you will find that Christianity has caused more wars and killing than any other religion. As for this country, here we kill, rape and steal for no damn reason at all, not even religion. You think we are better than them yet Americans commit those same heinous crimes. Why can you justify one of us killing a 6 yr old child in school but not for them to do it. IMO honestly your spelling and vocabulary in your comment shows me you might need to go back to school and reeducate yourself. While you are at it, find some compassion and empathy in your heart because you are lacking in those wonderful attributes in a big way. Oh and learn about what exactly human rights means because you are oblivious to what that is all about. My comment is not meant to be mean like yours but I hope it will put a little thought in your head and you will run with it and make something positive out of it. Oh and another thing to think about is what if you were in their shoes, what would you do?

      • Christopher – your take on ‘god’ is as evil as the one you say they worship. Personally I believe all Abrahamic religions are evil – Christianity is no better and it’s only been under control for the past 50 years or so. Up until then it was all Murder, Rape, Stealing, Pedophilia, and Genocide by Christians and Christianity. And, in some nations, it still is. Organized religion is the root of all evil.

      • Take your cruel judgemental religious dogma and present that right before those suffering Syrians you righteous POS. I am so sick of your right wing religious proselityzing I could spit. This world is so much worse off with you in it. I guarantee.

      • Christopher Freeman

        Pick up your Bible and keep thumping it. It seems to stir you with anger, revenge and a limited scope of humanity. The rest of us will read ours and learn empathy and acceptance through the messages embedded within the text..

        It’s very sad that you have been so brainwashed into seeing differences as evil. Your misguided hatred in no way aligns with the teachings of Christ.

        Easter is coming. The anniversary of the death of Jesus Christ, who died because he loved and cared. He resisted against people like yourself. I will keep resisting people like you as well.

      • You keep bringing in that God word, but what god,,, your god,,, the Muslim God,,, the Jewish god,,, Buddha,,, I’m not real sure you understand the Humane side of life and love.

      • This is the most delusional and ignorant thing I have read today. Excluding the entire bit about you calling other people who don’t believe what you believe idiots, all the while not putting together a single sentence with any kind of structural or grammatical integrity.

        I am a Christian, but I realize that Islam is about peace and love, and these terrorists are not true Muslims. I disagree with most of what Muslims believe in fact, but I don’t hate an entire group of people or freakin’ validate the murder of their children.

      • There is no god when this happens. We don’t deal with the afterlife until it is over. What matters now is how we treat each other. If you think there is a god then maybe you need to look at your heart and then say “what would Jesus do?”
        Your statement is exactly what is wrong with this country now, you took the compassion out of our country to cover your own bigotry.

      • Christopher. You are an idiot. It never ceases to amaze me that those who believe themselves to be so righteous and Godlike are the least christain and loving humans on Earth. Why dont you go do something useful like studying sentence structure, grammar, spelling. If you didnt have the communication skills of a first grader, someone might take you seriously.

        • All true Diane, but if you think about it, he and Wayne are better proof of what John P is saying than anything the decent people here ever could.

          • So very true, Sandi. They are exactly the people John P is talking to. I could, of course, add some names but I won’t.

      • Strange, Christianity is very much the same and if they could get away with it, they would do very much the same. Oh, my bad, that’s what Christians in Africa do.

      • Christopher if you any idea of what the Muslim faith was you would be ashamed of what you just wrote. This article was written for you and people like you, however, sadly I see you missed the point.

      • We are a nation of laws – not religion. Your mythology has no place here. And, by the way, you need to review the New Testament, because nothing you said above is in line with the teachings of Jesus.

      • Chris, do yourself a favor and go back in your mind and ask yourself this question:

        When did I, Christopher Freeman, piss my pants in terror and surrender to the terrorists? When did I give into the hate and fear that they created in my heart and do what they want which is to label the entirety of Islam as the enemy. When did I betray the founding principles of the United States in the name of my fear and hate?

        To quote; We as americas believe in the santity of life

        Oh really? You’re not believing in the sanctity of life if said life is Muslim.

        To quote: Thiers if like facism. only some stupid inman can determine how , what , where they go.

        Oh little boy, don’t use terms like “fascism” when you don’t know what the term means. I’ll buy you a clue…you’re closer to fascism.

        • Dear Tracy, do not expect that everyone comes here to discuss the host in a friendly or Christian manner. It might be best to ignore the baiting comments.

      • Christopher: You obviously know nothing of Islam as a religion, which teaches peace and submission to the Will of God…totally in keeping with the message of Christianity.
        The fact that a group of extremist, lawless, murderous, thugs USURP the name “islam” to describe their barbarism does NOT change the message of True Islam. Any more than a True Christian must condemn intolerance, hatred, racism, injustice misogyny.

        • Chris, does the terrorist actions of the KKK represent all of Christianity? When right wing Christian pastors call for the mass murder of gays are they all of Christianity?

    • I have grandkids great grandkids they come first, why as a gram would I want them to be beat up, raped, I live in Florida now but was born and raised in Minnesota and I seen how different parts of mpls is after they moved in, I don’t like what happened but I think the America people don’t need them here anymore

      • I am sorry that you have had that experience linda. Maybe try judging each person one at a time on their character. Just because I have blue eyes does not make me more romantic. I teach little kids including Muslims and like every religion, there are good people and I don’t want to say bad, but wayward people. I have several little muslim children in my heart who are as sweet as any other child. I hope you will consider this. and for those who would say why bother expressing this, why not? We are all humans and we should try to reach out to others in a state of grace unless and until someone shows us they are not worthy of it.

      • Tell you what, Linda, if you were to stop watching the fake news sources, if your kids, grandkids and great grandkids stopped watching the fake news, if you stopped listening to the stories about monsters in your closets, boogeymen under your beds, then maybe you could be freed of your bigotry, prejudice, and racism.

        My gosh, what you write about Muslims are what people used to say about black families who dared to move into white neighborhoods.

      • OMGosh, seriously! Ignorance is running rampant here in America. So tell me what you think of Americans who take high powered guns into a school and blow the brains out of 20, 5 and 6 yr old kids? He was an American, born and bred here. Tell me also what do you think of the killing of 33,000 people by other Americans in this country every yr? Do you think only evil exist outside of this country. How many rapes? How many kids are used for sex trafficking in this country? How many armed robberies? How many other vile and heinous crimes are committed here? Do you think we are a country of angels? Wake up!

    • Really? So when you engage in acts of violence against another people, who have made it clear with no doubt that they are not your friends, the natural course of action of course is to then allow the people you are aggressing into your country. Cause what could possibly go wrong? What in the hell is actually wrong with your brain?

      • Oh yeah, you are indeed “that guy” alright.

        First of all, you are absolutely not describing the situation accurately. The people we are engaging “in acts of violence against” are ISIS terrorists not the Syrian people who are caught between them and their own cruel dictator as a civil war rages.

        The refugees are the innocent people caught in the cross-hairs of both Assad and ISIS. They have no refuge, they are not fighting anyone.

        So yes, “the natural course of action” is to help at least some of them. Other nations have taken millions and we have taken few. I know Trump and Christian Right brain has you thinking all Muslims are enemies and all refugees are terrorists, but they are really just terrified. What in the hell is actually wrong with YOUR brain, is the question here.

        • Don’t you guys watch TV? Just today I saw a Syrian thank Trump for the air strike but he asked for us now to create safe zones so they can stay in their country. They do not want to be Americans, they want to be Syrians and stay in their homes. Most of these people do not want to be refugees. Would you want that?

          • Violet, I don’t think you begin to understand that there are no places in Syria that can be safe zones. Maybe this 5 minute video will help you understand that complexity of the war in Syria and that creating safe zones would be nearly impossible. (https://www.facebook.com/SteffaniePinskyChristofore) You heard ONE man say this but haven’t spoken or heard from the masses that want out. And of course, we can’t hear from those that were killed because they are gone. Why? Because the United States closed their doors to these people. I have a Syrian friend who has been trying for over 2 years to get his elderly parents into the US but they kept being denied. They are innocent Syrians who would cause no harm to Americans yet we won’t let them in. Why? Because we met our low numbers for refugees? Listen to the thousands that have taken refuge here…they didn’t want to stay in Syria…they didn’t want to risk a safe zone in their war torn country. And what kind of life would that be? A safe zone surrounded by war.
            And then we have Trump who suddenly feels impelled to help by bombing the bombers but wouldn’t help these people before they died. A President in cahoots with Putin who refuses to see that the reason this happened is because he supplied them with the means to carry out this ghastly act on innocent lives. The hypocrisy of Trump is overwhelming. It took pictures of children suffocating, foaming at the mouth and lying dead in their parents arms for him to see they need help? Really? I’m shocked.

      • More Americans were/are killed by right wing extremists every day than by any refugees or illegal immigrants. The overall crime rate among the refugees and illegal immigrants is much lower tha those committed by Americans. So WHO are the murderers? Take a look in the mirror.

    • Completely agree. We turn our backs on the Syrian people, refuse to provide them with a safe haven, until it is too late.

      • so where were all you bleeding hearts when Obama turned his back on the Syrian people and caused the formation of ISIS?? HYPOCRITES!!

        • Stephen what caused the formation of ISIL, child, was George W Bush’s incompetent war in Iraq. He went in there with no plan no understanding of the people, no understanding of the history and no understanding of what the result would be of what was effectively an invading army on a people that have seen over a thousand years of invading armies from the west marching in to serve their own causes. and the people that formed the core of ISIL were the people that W removed from power over there.

          So no, child, don’t go blaming Obama for that one. Once again, just like the GOP has done since the 1950s, they have used the US military to **** around in the middle east and it has always come back to bite us on the ass.

          The previous name for ISIL was Jama’at al-Tawhid wal-Jihad and it was part of the Iraqi insurgency following the 2003 invasion.

          • James, so very glad there are those who here who paid attention the to the history that was made before our very eyes.

            • Gloriamarie, That is so true. I really appreciate James and his comments. It is so sad and disappointing that people are so willfully ignorant of history, especially recent history. Not sure how we combat that except to keep repeating the truth over and over. I think they live in an alternate universe.

              • Kathleen, I agree. I sometimes feel like a broken record, but truth is truth is truth and we out their lies for what they are.

                If they chose to cling to the lies, to turn their backs to the truth, well, Jesus has identified that sin for what it is and we don’t need to. Jesus seems to tell us that there is no way to repent that particular choice. I have no reason to doubt Jesus, but I still hope there is a way for the light to pierce their darkness.

          • You’re incorrect. ISIS has it’s roots in pre-9/11 Afghanistan. They moved to Iraq after the U.S. invaded that country. They existed prior to March of ’03. Their goal is to force a final confrontation with “crusader armies” in Dabiq, a small Syrian town where Muhammad prophesized Islam would defeat their Roman enemies. As you can’t fight a battle in Syria if you’re physically in Afghanistan, their eventual movement west was a necessary eventuality if they are to achieve their stated goal of fulfilling the prophecy and establishing an Islamic Caliphate. It can’t be known when they would have migrated to the region without the U.S. intervention in Iraq, but to say it’s all the fault of President Bush is untrue. Their motivations are 1300ish years old. Not even the most ardent democrat has yet blamed Bush for something that happened in the seventh century. If you are going to ridicule someone else as a child, know of what you speak.

            • Dear Navy CDR,

              Navy to Navy, I salute you, sir, and I thank you for your service. I think that James Kessler’s reply to Stephen’s rant about President Obama probably could have left out the word “child” (although his rant was childish, in my opinion) but I’m pretty sure James was mostly correct. I know it’s common knowledge that various cultural groups in the Middle East follow interpretations of Islam that include Muhammad’s (1300-year-old) prophecies, but present-day ISIS was not formed with the intent of carrying them out.

              Abu al-Zarqawi started the JTJ (eventually known as ISIS or ISIL) in 1999 in Afghanistan for the sole purpose of carrying out his extreme interpretation of Islamic takfir (judging and punishing Muslims for rejecting strict adherence to Islamic fundamentalism, or apostate). JTJ left Afghanistan with the intent of carrying out takfir against the Jordanian apostate. The United States’ invasion of Iraq took place while JTJ was there, staging for their move into Jordan. During the Iraq conflict JTJ became dispersed. Some members began attacks in Jordan, while others still in Iraq got caught up fighting U.N. coalition forces, primarily for its support of Israel and “humiliating” the Palestinian Muslims, and now the Iraqi Muslims. At this point they became known as al-Qaeda in Iraq. Although they were still focused on Jordan, the increasing influx of U.N. coalition troops forced them to ramp up their efforts in Iraq. During this time they evolved into ISIL and adopted the idea of creating an Islamic Caliphate. This was a completely present day reaction to our invasion of Iraq, which was knowingly done under false pretenses by George Bush and, very likely under pressure from Dick Cheney even though the CIA found no support for weapons of mass destruction beforehand. In order to convince Congress, the White House played on Colin Powell’s credibility to lobby Congress but kept him unaware of the CIA’s reports. I have met him twice and he has not only stated in person, but well before that, publicly, that this was the greatest regret of his career.

              My information is based upon direct knowledge from my squadron’s operations in the region, information such as the Senate reports on pre and post- war intelligence, the Washington Institute’s report on Near East Policy, and my present day civilian involvement in national defense.

              • I have to disagree about the false pretenses. Mistake? Absolutely. Impossible to make the argument that it was a wise move with the benefit of 20/20 hindsight. However, a lot of people accuse President Bush of lying us into the war, which I don’t believe. He was wrong, no doubt, but I think he honestly believed, as did a great many others, his predecessor not the least of them, Iraq had WMD. A belief that the Iraqis played no small part in stoking. President Bush, from my observation, is an honest and decent person, not one who would send several thousand of his soldiers to their deaths for something he knew to be untrue. I don’t hold Cheney in the same regard, though I think people who believe he is an evil mastermind on the level of a James Bond villain give him too much credit. Could be wrong.

                I’m coming up on my sixth deployment to the region, squadron, ship and individual. You are totally correct that a staggering amount has gone into the current situation there. Thanks for filling in the details. It’s not all the fault of one individual or one side, as a lot of people choose to believe. Blame is shared by thousands, going back at least a century now. I am turned off by the smug sanctimony of most commenters here who hold themselves above their ideological opposites and believe themselves better than others, while believing things about the world that are provably untrue.

                Go Navy.

                • Navy CDR, first, thank you and Edward M. for your service to our country, that is courage and sacrifice I admire, respect and appreciate very much. Both yours and that of your family.

                  I keep hearing folks articulate a version of the accusation you ended with and frankly it puzzles me. You are clearly able to express yourself well, would you please elaborate on what it is that tells you someone, (me for instance) is speaking from “smug sanctimony” as opposed to genuine belief in what Jesus commanded us to do? What tells you that trying to follow Jesus means I hold myself “above” anyone or could believe I am “better than others”?

                  Anyone is subject to “believing things about the world that are provably untrue” because too many of us seek bias confirmation as opposed to doing research but, the rest, I am really not sure how you “see” it. I am not singling you out for a fight, I am genuinely asking. I have taken something someone says “the wrong way” and argued against people I normally would agree with, by the same token, I find it hard to accept when someone I do not like says something I would normally agree with. What is it you see that helps you make the distinction you make?

                  • As a retired Navy spouse, I would appreciate the answer to that also. By the way, I almost said Beat Army to your post but remembered that I have to remain neutral, since one of my sons is a grad of West Point. Peace,

                  • Ladies, I apologize for the lateness of my reply. Internet on a carrier underway is spotty on a good day.

                    I say that people here are sanctimonious because of the interactions I have had with some commenters here. One, commenter, really, however several people seem to follow her in lock step.

                    I’ve spent enough time in Afghanistan, Bahrain, and Oman to truthfully say I’ve lived in each country. I’ve also traveled to Kuwait, Qatar, Israel, and the United Arab Emirates. Now, I don’t claim to be the smartest person in the world. One time in Kabul, a buddy and I drove across town, past the still smoldering wreckage of a VBIED to get from our base to another simply because it had a Dairy Queen. It’s tough to imagine that someone with even a room temperature IQ would risk life and limb for an oreo blizzard (totally worth it). That being said, having spent a few years in that part of the world, I think I have more than a passing knowledge of the people who call it home, and their religion. Yet, the woman to whom I refer, without knowing anything about me, dismissed my opinion on said topic, and told me that before I was even worthy enough to engage her in conversation, I needed to read several books and educate myself. Any dispassionate observer will acknowledge that is some pretty arrogant behavior. I’ve seen her drive other women off this blog, some of whom I would bet a sizeable chunk of change agree with her 95% of the time. Combine this with what can be described as a sometimes questionable relationship with the real world, and it serves to turn a lot of people off.

                    So, that’s why I said what I said. You’re welcome to dispute it, but I’ve observed enough to form my opinion.

                    (And Kathleen, you need not remain neutral. Saying “Beat Army” is never wrong.)

                    • Dear Navy CDR,

                      I am so glad to see you here! So glad. I know you cannot disclose your position, but I hope that wherever you are, the seas favor you.

                      I want you to know that we (me and 324,922,409 of your fellow U.S. citizens) are so grateful for your service and think of you often.

                      I have a message for you that I saved, since I didn’t see your name come up after last we connected. Dang cruises, always interfering with something! If you will be able to return to the site, I’d sure like to use this opportunity to contact you. If so, just comment on any of my posts here and I will get a notification and reply.

                      Very best regards,

                      Edward M

                    • Dear Navy CDR

                      Again, thank you for your service. And I think I can speak for so many of us here, we pray for the safety of you and everyone of your brothers and sisters in arms in these troubled times. Blessings

        • Stephen,
          Please go do your research on what Obama did to help the Syrians. He did help after being denied by the Republican congress any funds to do so. Yes, he actually went through the protocol of getting congress approval but Republicans turned their heads and refused. But still he followed through and helped. UGH Ignorant.

          • Exactly. Especially because I doubt he will be able to place the blame where it really does belong: Bush 2 and his administration of war criminals.

    • I wish pastor John would stop calling them ‘brown people’. Doesn’t he know that middle easterners and north africans are considered ‘white race’. (so are 90% of Latinos).

        • US Census race categories are:

          Black
          Native American
          Pacific Islander
          Asian
          White (middle easterners, n. africans, 90% of Hispanics).

          [it doest sit right for John to call people ‘brown skinned’. Especially since the ones he is referring to are actually ‘white’. ]

          • Leslie, I can understand what you are trying to say if you look at a census sheet but the term ‘brown’ is a valid racial and ethnic classification. It is commonly used to refer to Middle Eastern people as well as North Africa, the Near East, Central Asia, South Asia, Southeast Asia, and Austronesian.

            • Sally Jane, this conversation about use of “brown-skinned” and how wrong it is of John P to use it reminds me of the GOP in Congress during the Obama years. Whatever Obama wanted to do, they opposed it because he wanted it. Whatever Obama said, they contradicted because he said.

              There are commenters on this blog who contradict John P because he is John P. They routinely lack evidence and facts for their assertions.

              “Brown-skinned” is apparently a very commonly used and accepted term.

              https://www.wikiwand.com/en/Brown_(racial_classification)

            • The problem is that he uses terms like “brown people” to race bait.

              If Obama is criticized it’s criticism of “the black president.”

              If there is concern about illegal immigrants, it’s “fear of brown people.”

              He demonizes those who disagree with his extreme leftwing politics.

              • Joe Catholic, if you seriously believe John P is pushing “extreme leftwing politics” then you only prove you know NOTHING of “extreme leftwing politics.” It makes you look foolish to say so.

                You will not find “extreme leftwing politics” talking about the love of Jesus, or the teachings of Jesus.

                  • Of course, Kathleen, Jesus is certainly to the left of Joe, what with those commands to love neighbors, feed the hungry, clothe the naked, care for the sick, meet needs.

                    • You’re poor and I sent food to you. Why would you believe I don’t believe in helping the poor?

                    • To quote Joe: You’re poor and I sent food to you. Why would you believe I don’t believe in helping the poor?

                      Because your political/economic policies as a conservative/Republican harm the poor.

                      Your, for example, donating food to your local pantry, while commendable, doesn’t really mean a damn thing if you take food out of the people’s hands first by gutting the safety net provided by the government first. If you harm the poor by gutting the safety net then all you are doing by donating food to a food pantry is assuaging your guilty conscience….which is not charity.

                      You and your party, to use a blunt metaphor, Joe, are an abusive husband who beats up their spouse then apologizes by buying them some roses…and then turns around and beats them again.

                    • Joe if a rich man builds a park does that outweigh that same rich man dumping tons of poisonous pollutants into the local drinking water?

                      If a rich man donates money to build a hockey rink for the local school sports team does that counterbalance that same rich man refusing to pay his employees enough to live on without welfare while he lives in a 40 room mansion and then he bitches about people being on welfare?

                      And yet your party is fine with that rich man dumping all that poison just as your party is fine with that rich man living in that mansion while using US taxpayers to subsidize his business because he’s too cheap ass to pay his employees adequately when he can well afford to do so. And then your party punishes the poor people he employs because they’re on welfare instead of targeting the actual cause of the problem..the rich man’s greed.

                      Your party’s policies have been absolute disaster for the poor and the middle class, Joe, so no matter how much you may donate to charity it’s still getting far outweighed by the damage that the policies you support inflict.

                      So pat yourself on the back if you want..but you are still part of the problem by supporting those policies. Until you stop being part of the problem your charity doesn’t mean a damn thing.

                    • Once again, Thank you, I keep asking how many billions do these guys need before it’s enough? How much of the earth do they need to destroy before it’s enough? How many lives do they have to affect negatively before it’s enough? No one seems to have the answer. Peace,

                  • Well James, that’s how you see it. You set the parameters and then you criticize those who don’t fit. You did the same thing regarding “practicing Catholic.” You made up your own definition to suit yourself and to exclude who you would like to exclude.

                    Besides that, you don’t take knowledge (or ignorance) or intent into consideration at all.

                • Sandi, something I have frequently noticed is that to those on the Christian Right, anyone moderate is branded as “extreme leftwing.” There is no sense of balance at all in their thinking. After all, Obama has been branded as “extreme leftwing” when he has never been anything but a moderate.

                    • Spot on Kathleen and the extreme left was as hard against Hillary as the Christian Right was. Go figure!

                  • You are right Gloriamarie, they are either incredibly dishonest or incredibly ignorant and have no idea what “extreme leftwing” even means. But it is their epithet of choice.

                    • I know they mean that as an insult but I can’t figure out how it is supposed to be one. I’ve been called that often and I just don’t get it how is it extreme leftwing to want to end poverty, hunger, make medical care universally available, welcome strangers. That’s all stuff right out of the Bible. SO what makes it extreme leftwing?

                      “Dr. Beatrice Bruteau asks the right question: “How big is your we?” Can we expand our vision of community beyond our own skin, family, race, tribe, culture, country, and species? Spiritual life is more than what we believe, it also includes how we relate. Who is included in the we and who is not? That is both a spiritual and a political question. How we answer it will likely determine our future.”

                      — Jim Wallis in Who Speaks For God?

                  • thats because, Gloria, that the right wing has gone so far right wing that they no longer have a proper perception of where the middle ground is.

                    Back when Obama first won the Presidency the GOP came up with a “conservative purity” test that not even Saint Ronny of the Raygun would have passed.

                    If the three greatest Republican presidents ever were alive today they would not be Republicans.

                    Eisenhower, Lincoln and Teddy Roosevelt would be Democrats.

                    Nixon would be an independent and Reagan would likely be one as well.

                    • <<<>>> Please, James, only the trolls call me Gloria, which is not my name.

                      “the right wing has gone so far right wing that they no longer have a proper perception of where the middle ground is.”

                      Huh. I thought I implied that. Oh well.

                      “Eisenhower, Lincoln and Teddy Roosevelt would be Democrats.”

                      I agree. I am astonished to find myself thinking of Eisenhower as a liberal, but so he would be in today’s climate.

                      Even Ronnie was to the left of today’s neo-cons.

                  • Thank you, James. I was so astonished by Joe’s evident belief that his one time gift would solve all my food insecurity for the rest of my life that I could not begin to fashion a response.

                    Thank you for doing it for me.

                    • It would have been a two-time gift or more had you not bit the hand that fed you. That you called me a “troll” the next day give me reason to not trust you.

                    • “It would have been a two-time gift or more had you not bit the hand that fed you. That you called me a “troll” the next day give me reason to not trust you.”

                      In other words, your love of your neighbor is conditional on meeting your standards. In other word, you don’t chose to love in an agape manner.

                      As all the gifts I received at that time were anonymous, I have no idea how I was supposed to know they were from you. Every time I received a gift, I thanked whoever sent it.

                      I never knew they were from you until you boasted about it here.

                      But even a two-time gift does not resolve my ***permanent*** condition of food insecurity.

                    • No Gloriamarie.

                      It’s more like this:

                      Fool me once, shame on you. Fool me twice, shame on me.

                      I’d rather give where I’m sure I’m not being conned.

                    • And yet, joe, you continue to support a party that has been a disaster for the poor and middle class whose leader is a liar and a conman.

                      You like being fooled

                    • Joe so called Catholic wrote “No Gloriamarie.

                      It’s more like this:

                      Fool me once, shame on you. Fool me twice, shame on me.

                      I’d rather give where I’m sure I’m not being conned.”

                      Thank you, Joe, for proving with your own words, what we already know to be true about you.

                      1) Like the Pharisee you boast about you good works and deny Jesus command to give as though your left hand has no idea what your right hand is doing and

                      2) you ignore the words of Jesus to feed the hungry with no strings attached in order to attach stings of your own.

                      I feel sorryh for every one who hs ever received a gidt from you and failed to meet your conditions as a worthy recipient.

                      Ten-year-olds attach conditions to a gift, not spiritual adults. Any priest RCC or otherwise will tell you that.

                    • Here’s another thought. Joe Catholic claims he was the one to send me all that stuff around Christmas. He’s boasted of it while villifying me.

                      Here’s the important point: every single package was sent anonymously by someone claiming to be my “favorite troll.”

                      There were a lot of trolls I was attempting to converse with at the time. How was and am I supposed to know which troll was so deluded to think she or he could be my “favorite troll.”

                      And since the packages were from someone claiming to be a troll, how can Joe, if it was he, possibly object to being called a troll when he himself called himself one, if he was the one who sent the gifts.

                      Then he distorts and twist things to blame me, while loudly proclaiming that he was generous to me, I was rude to him, therefore he has valid reason to be stingy now.

                      Bottom line, Joe. I am ill. I almost died a week ago. Look at how you are treating me, a sick person. You are indeed a troll. If you don’t want to be called a troll, then stop being one.

                      If Jesus were to appear in front of you while you wrote those things about me, what would He say to you?

                  • Kathleen B, you wrote “Once again, Thank you, I keep asking how many billions do these guys need before it’s enough? How much of the earth do they need to destroy before it’s enough? How many lives do they have to affect negatively before it’s enough? No one seems to have the answer. ”

                    I can tell you the answer. I don’t like it. You won’t like it. No one on the side of the angels likes it.

                    Greed is self-perpetuating it. Feed it even a tiny bit and the next you you know, you have a gaping maw with an insatible hunger that can never be appeased.

              • Hey Joe,

                I must admit, I find the term “brown people” odd, although I think john is trying to describe people of color other than black. I don’t believe he is trying to race bait.

                I believe that there is a tremendous amount of bigotry in our country, and I have no doubt that there are plenty of ignorant rednecks that have, if nothing else, criticized President Obama because they are prejudiced, even if they don’t openly say that. However, I believe that most criticisms of him have been solely for his policies by those that disagree, and I think that most people know that.

                I have a long and intimate familiarity with the illegal immigrant situation in this country. I believe that if John uses “brown” to describe illegal immigrants it is intended as a description intended to reflect the viewpoint of bigots, not his own. I know for a fact that the overwhelming majority of Americans who are concerned with illegal immigrants are not concerned because of their color, and I am certain that John is completely aware of that.

                I am wondering if you have ever considered examining how your own personal opinions compare to those of the entire spectrum of people on this planet, from the furthest possible extreme to the right all the way over to the furthest possible extreme to the left. It is a fact that the distribution of population on this continuum is a bell curve, with the vast majority of opinions located in the middle 40% of the scale. ALL functional societies exist within the middle 60%, and those outside this 60% begin to approach the category of “antisocial”, and ultimately “extreme”, whether they are left or right. These are the people who are a threat to society. Those that we might “demonize”, and probably rightly so.

                Through the numerous polls, tests, and surveys I have taken over the years (a strong personal interest) I consistently land well within the center-left and I find that I am usually in very close agreement with John. John’s beliefs don’t even remotely approach “extreme”. Is it possible that you may not have a clear awareness of just how far right your own opinions are on the full spectrum, compared to the entire population? If you are extremely far to the right, relative to the majority of the entire population, then John, much nearer to the center, would appear very far from you indeed. Even extremely far. Joe, I think you might want to entertain the idea that you are far more extreme than you realize, and no wonder you feel demonized. You certainly appear to experience a lot of it around here. Is it everybody else here that’s wrong or is it you? Even if it were only up to chance (which it isn’t), the overwhelming odds are that it’s you. Think about it.

              • Hey, Joe, you claim to love babies so much?

                Sign and share this petition

                NANOTECHNOLOGY DOESN’T BELONG IN INFANT FORMULA
                Nano is a no-no. Don’t use babies as lab rats!

                Mead Johnson Nutrition, Nestlé, and Walgreens are exposing babies to unhealthy and under-studied nanoparticles. Their top-selling products include engineered nanoparticles such as nano titanium dioxide and nano silicon dioxide. Recent science says that these substances are likely toxic for humans and other living things.

                Nanoparticles can enter cells, tissues, and organs and may harm our health. And yet, these tiny engineered particles have not gone through proper safety assessments, and there is no regulatory process in place to protect consumers. Babies are our most vulnerable population and the full impacts of ingestion and exposure to nanoparticles is unknown. What we do know is that we shouldn’t be using our littlest loved ones as test subjects.

                Take action and tell these companies are babies deserve better than dangerous nanoparticles!

                http://action.greenamerica.org/p/dia/action3/common/public/?action_KEY=19530

            • sally. That’s an awfully large group of people you are lumping together. [Isn’t almost everyone ‘brown skinned’?] It makes more sense to group people in cultural & socio-economic groups.

              A privileged white male cis gender Christian like John is too casual throwing around the ‘brown skin’ label. (especially since ‘brown’ people belong to the ‘white’ race, but he doesn’t even know it. )

              By the way, my family is native american and black. (which are legitimate racial groups).

                • P. Sturm. thanks for the honest answer. [I figured that already.] I expect more personal restraint from a Christian pastor. I know the horse is out of the barn on that one.

                  • Dear Readers, do not expect that everyone comes here to discuss the host in a friendly or Christian manner. It might be best to ignore the baiting comments.

                  • Well for some people, Leslie, it’s because it’s easier to simply obey and not think for ones self. And engaging in self reflection can be a scary prospect.

                    I doubt Joe there, just to use him as an example, has ever thought about what John has said. I doubt Joe has ever considered and thought about where John might be right. Joe simply wants to dismiss what John says out of hand because it’s inconvenient to him. Not once has it entered Joe’s mind “Wait..what if John is right? Maybe I should examine this…”

                    Oh and before Joe thinks I’m picking on him..yeah we are all capable of operating with blinders at times.

                    • Hey James. I’m a Catholic. One by choice as an adult. I had to “think for myself” to go from a Protestant anti-Catholic mindset to overcoming those prejudices and becoming a Catholic.

                      And I’ve been to Confession. “Self-reflection” is a very necessary part of that process.

                      You don’t know me. You can’t know me and what I’m thinking based on a few posts. At any rate, of course I see some things that JP says that are correct, but they are usually all tangled up with things that are wrong. He’s made a couple of good posts about death and there was little if anything that I would have criticized or disagreed with.

          • How convenient for your argument leslie m., but it does not tell the entire story now does it? The Census system has been faced with protests from the Middle Eastern and North African (MENA) communities as well as those “90% Latinos” you noted because they do not consider themselves “white” but more, MUCH MORE importantly, the Christian Right in America does not consider any of them “white” either. You know it, I know it and it is deliberately insulting for you to use the contested and inaccurate Census blocks to back your deliberate stab. Typical, but still sad.

            http://www.npr.org/sections/codeswitch/2017/03/11/519548276/for-some-arab-americans-checking-a-census-box-is-complicated

            • Hispanic is a cultural label, not a racial label. Almost all hispanics are white, except for the afro-caribean hispanics, which are black.

        • How is she being racist? She’s just being accurate. John the blog host is the one obsessed with skin color. Besides, she has a black husband and black children.

    • If you look at the bigger picture we are (in theory of course) trying to stabilize a country that is on the brink of a meltdown. The people who live there want to stay there, in peace, and practice their religion in their homeland. They all don’t want to run to America , to a foreign land where their religion and way of life is not even close to the same.

      I have talked to Syrians that want the word to attack the regime in power and make their homeland safe again. We can’t just bring in millions of people overnight, many which want to stay in their country because they have pride in it; it literally may be all they have in life outside family.

      Its not black and white, it is complicated. It is not unreal, it is very real, you just need to attempt to look at angels that you don’t agree with. We also bomed an AIR BASE THAT PRODUCES CEHEMICAL WEAPONS THAT KILLED WOMAN AND CHILDRE. We did not just “bomb a country”. You dumb it down with your comments, you don’t really understand it if I was to base your knowledge of the situation on your comment. Do you know any Syrian refugees in the USA? Have you talked to them in depth about their situation? all are unique and interesting, not all want to be here. I live in a city full of them, so I investigate.

      Anyways, have a good night and try to see things from different angles, you won’t be so blindsided by events you don’t agree with.

    • If I might make the slightest of correction. We didn’t bomb the country. We actually bombed the airfield where the planes with the chemical agents took off and landed. And, if I may, the people are welcome in accordance with all immigration laws. In this case we have to carefully make sure a bad guy isn’t in the mix. Make no mistake. This enemy is super smart and I do think they would answer all the questions in a way that would allow them entry. They have proven they are smart over time. Much smarter than Europe.

      • “If I might make the slightest of correction. We didn’t bomb the country. We actually bombed the airfield where the planes with the chemical agents took off and landed.”

        And did a very bad job of it because that airfield is still fully functional.

        It was a waste of money and resources in a token gesture of shaking a fist. That’s all it was, a token gesture and apparently the Fake First Lady’s idea, not Trump’s.

        “New military adviser Ivanka Trump reportedly convinced her father to bomb Syria

        “Ivanka Trump — an official government employee without military experience but with her own White House office— reportedly influenced President Donald Trump’s decision to strike against Syrian dictator Bashar al-Assad last week, according to her brother Eric Trump.”

        https://thinkprogress.org/ivanka-trump-trump-decision-syria-9d186dc508a1

        • Ivanka Trump influenced my father to launch Syria strikes, reveals brother Eric

          ric Trump has said he is “sure” his sister Ivanka used her influence over their father to encourage the US president to launch military action against Bashar al-Assad in Syria.

          Donald Trump ordered air strikes against a Syrian air base last Thursday night in response to a chemical weapons attack by the Assad regime on Tuesday that killed at least 87 people including more than 30 children.

          “Ivanka is a mother of three kids and she has influence. I’m sure she said: ‘Listen, this is horrible stuff,’” Eric Trump told the Telegraph.

          “My father will act in times like that. And by the way, he was anti doing anything with Syria two years ago. Then a leader gasses their own people, women and children. At some point America is the global leader and the world’s superpower has to come forward and act and they did with a lot of support of our allies and I think that’s a great thing.”

          http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/2017/04/10/ivanka-trump-influenced-father-launch-air-strikes-against-assad/

        • Did anyone bother to tell President Trump that bombing Syria with Tomahawk missiles is NOT how you do the “Tomahawk Chop”? Go Braves!

          • <<<<<<<<<<<<>>>>>>>>>>

            Sports

            <<<<<<<<<<<>>>>>>>>>>>>>

            Baseball… one of the five most boring activities invented by males.

            LOL

  2. Wow again! Powerful stuff that needs to be said, thank you John Pavlovitz and may God Bless you and the too few truth-tellers.

    Most days I feel like I do not know this country that I have lived in all my life. I know we are lost, I fear we are also doomed. We are a house divided and the only thing that will unite us is atrocity. What does that make us?

    Please God, give us the discerning mind and fierce heart to see the truth and tell the truth. If we do not stand up to corruption, incompetence and outright villainy who will?

    • Thank You Jon for speaking up , and taking on the responsibility as a pastor and attempting to get to the heart of the situation. I dont always agree, but I respect your views as that . And weigh them out against scripture. Very important , Weights and Measures to God s Word, Entirely, old, new testiments
      Name no mistake , God is NOT Dead, Sleeping, Out to lunch somewhere, and or not paying attention.
      Judgement comes to mankind when they disobey, rebel, go thier own way , unto the 4th generation of those who hate God. Take a good look at the world and see all the Godless acts of Violence, Rape, Theft, Adultery, All Anti God , By Godless people who just think were all good and god turns his head for me. Special Meeeeeee,
      God is Just , No special people , No special privialage , No special exemptions .
      God Blinds the Eye of those who by thier actions Hate God.
      So The answer is inward examination Constantly and repentance , turning away from anyone, anything, any Idol that takes MY, YOUR , thier heart s from God.
      Respect, Reverence, Fear , Holiness

  3. Trump’s outrage at babies being killed was truly ironic, considering that those babies’ deaths must be laid at his feet. U.S. President Barack Obama said in 2012 that the use of chemical weapons would be a “red line” that would change his calculus on intervening in the civil war and have “enormous consequences.” Syria then signed the Chemical Weapons Convention in 2013 and was supposed to have gotten rid of its entire supply of Sarin gas. There had been rumors that some of its supply had not been accounted for. In the intervening years there had been some attacks with chlorine gas but none with Sarin. Then, TWO DAYS after Trump had the US Secretary of State says that the US is OK with Assad staying in power, the US won’t intervene, but rather will let Syria sort itself out, there is a Sarin gas attack. And Trump is blaming this on whom? Why, Obama, of course. Sorry, current Republican administration, this is all on you. The photos of the suffering children are heartbreaking.
    And now Trump has launched missiles at Syria and from what I have read, he did not have the legal authority to do so. I honestly think this is intended to distract from his Russia/collusion/conflict of interest problem. (I also saw a report from Hillary Clinton from earlier today, recommending an attack to take out Syria’s air fields so they can’t launch chemical weapon attacks; I keep wondering that if Trump saw that report, he probably would not have launched missiles, just so he would not be like Hillary or appear to be following her orders.) I have called my Senators and Congresswoman and left them messages, asking them please to find out whether the President had the legal authority to launch the missiles and, if not, to have him sidelined until the election/Russia/conflicts of interest issue is resolved. I honestly think that Trump will do anything to stay in power, including starting a war as a distraction and/or to secure oil fields. I have no idea why I, as a US citizen, would have any reason to support a war against Syria. But it sure looks like they would have a good reason to declare war against the US at this point. I hope the Syrians have more power of forgiveness than I would have in this situation. Peace is our only hope.

    • This situation in syria is a byproduct of a failure of the past president to do what he said he would do , take a stand , and when syria crossed the line Do Something, Twice in past , Pres obama Closed his eyes , did nothing , and sent lots of money , thinking money solve s issues , NO Money is a tool to do more damage. and build arsonals of injustice.
      At least while thier poor we can help , when they have massive terror weapons and training to train hate into thier people , that s when YOU cannot help , JUST PRAY , God has to intervien
      Trump Takess a stand and does not put up with this fear mongonering
      He at least does not put up with Bullys even small, large, who ever .
      YOU Better Pray, And Believe God can fix this mess create by past presidents

      • The past president, you may or may not recall, went to Congress (as he is supposed to do) for authorization to use military force against Syria, but Congress refused to grant it. So President Obama worked through diplomatic channels instead, and got an agreement for Syria’s regime to get rid of its chemical weapons. Clearly that agreement has now been violated, but it isn’t on Obama.

      • FYI, usually when this country fires upon another we have an input from Congress. Maybe you need to look back when President Obama was President he had a Congress that would no work with him and actually did everything to work against him. Also you can go back on trumps twitter account and find all the post made by trump regarding President Obama and Syria. Every post was against President Obama doing anything in Syria. Also let me ask you after all the comments trump has made about not helping the Syrian people he does a 180 switch in 24 hours.. trump is a lying SOB and he has no empathy or compassion for any of the Syrian people. His actions were only to deviate from the Russian scandal and nothing more. IMO trump is evil.

  4. Another troubled night of sleep. Too many of those of late. What can we do. What can I, STEVE, do? Well, my next action after posting this is to write and call my Senators and Representative and INSIST that we ENLARGE our refugee quotas. Today’s refugees are the most vetted immigrants to ever enter our land.

      • Vetting HAS been a standard all the time. It takes fully two years for a refugee to get through the vetting process before they can be admitted to our country. That is not something new since our current president took office; it’s the way it has been for years.

      • The extreme vetting was put in place by Obama. Trump is just lying like always and then tries to ban Muslims and refugees.

  5. I don’t have any words, so Thank you, John for yours. My heart is breaking. What scares me is that I am not surprised. Peace,

    • So agree with you John and the above comments. No words, saddened, fearful, & mortified w/ what is happening under an unfit 45. There’s comfort in knowing others feel the same way & and are speaking out. I will be making calls today.

    • Why so you can get some liberal to just send terror money and release criminals into the streets for good behavior.
      Then let everyone just Party , Play , and All Hell will break out as our nation falls to the gound in Judgement .
      YOU need to Start By getting Right with God , Repent , Change , Turn your heart over to a loving God , Trust, Obey , Stop Following lust , pleasure, persuit of all you can get , Idolatry and turn to the true religeon , Godliness, Holiness, Relationship which prays , trust , believes Gods Best

      • Christopher, if Trump is removed from office under the 25th Amendment or impeachment, no liberal would become President. Unless you consider Mike Pence a liberal? Even if it is proven Russia is solely responsible for Trump’s win, no new election will be called. Should Pence be removed also, Paul Ryan would become President. Then Tillerson. And so one down the list of succession. Please read up and learn how our government really works.

        • I just checked who are the first six in the line of succession under the Trump administration: 1. Mike Pence (Vice President); 2. Paul Ryan (Speaker of the House); 3. Orin Hatch (President Pro Tempore of the Senate); 4. Rex Tillerson (Secretary of State); 5. James Mattis (Secretary of Defense), 6. Jeff Sessions (Attorney General).

    • I want you all to know the Truth and Seek out God , with your whole heart and Trust God alone , and believe his word
      Trust and obey
      no other way to be happy , no matter what is going on around you or the world.
      IT is not Doom or Gloom , It is Prophecy from god being fulfulled and the world will play right into it.
      God is the Final , And omega to the whole picture.

  6. Thank you, John, for saying what’s in my heart and the hearts of all right-thinking people in America. And so help me, I will choke the first person who praises Trump for being “presidential”.

  7. Through your posts, beliefs and values you have emblazoned and gave me a newfound boldness John. May you and yours be favored and blessed.

  8. Well put, John, and I agree with your pointed message. I wonder though, did nobody see the atrocities of Aleppo? The relentless bombing and shelling of innocent peaceful civilian men, women and children performed by the Syrian-Russian regime? How is this recent attack really any different or less insane?

  9. 7 years of civil war in Syria.
    Funny how there is little condemnation here of Assad and the past 7 years of atrocities….oh wait….that’s right….”red line” Obama policies are not to be criticized.

    John P…..what’s your solution?

    • When President Obama went to Congress for authorization for military action in Syria several years ago and again just last year, Anon, the GOP refused it.

      So tell me, child, what were you spouting about Obama?

      Trump promised a genius plan to take out ISIL within 30 days of assuming the office because he knew more about that than even our military leadership.

      So where is it, Anon?

    • Sure they were “to be criticized”, Trump himself criticized them and all but dared Obama to intervene and Congress did not back him up either. Your cowboy may have started a stampede and you are fine with that because this one atrocity was the final straw? Please!

    • Anonymous,
      I agree with John it seems pointless to bomb a country whose refugees you refuse to accept. I don’t have an answer to the problem but I also don’t see our president bombing all the other countries that are harming their own citizens. We don’t need to start another war in yet another Middle Eastern country. Do you have a solution that doesn’t include starting another war?

  10. Lol…..boy…..Trump is gift…..appears there’ll be no shortage of reasons and topics for John P to castrate over…..

    • There is no scenario where “Trump is gift”, Trump is a nightmare and we may not live to wake up. Governing is not as simple as the simple-minded thought it would be.

  11. Dear John, I truly say this with a heart of humility and compassion and hope it is received in that regard. I am full of respect for your work and your heart for Jesus and for all of humanity.

    I say this NOT as a Trump supporter, because I am NOT, by any stretch of the imagination. But in my search for truth and understanding over this past year – I have been convicted VERY DEEPLY by the fact that our US government foreign policy is not always what we are led to believe by the mainstream media – from both sides of the elite corporate establishment (not just Fox but CNN, MSNBC too). And despite the crazy anomaly of a Trump Presidency being way beyond anything we ever thought could happen – there is more and more evidence of the Democratic party & Republican party being simply two wings of the same bird…a two headed snake, so to speak.
    And with that personal realization, I am very, very saddened and ashamed of what we have allowed our country to do in our name.

    This bombing of “brown people” didn’t just start 3 months ago…the lead up to this week’s gas attack and tonight’s military response didnt just begin a year ago. We are currently “at war” and bombing eight different countries now! Eight!!! When Bush left office it was two. And despite what is said in the news, it’s not simply for humanitarian purposes or our country’s “freedom”.

    What about the absolutely horrific famine & starvation crisis we’ve created in Yemen? Does it matter if WE, yes WE are killing babies slowly through starvation or instantly with a drone strike? Do you know how many civilian casualties there were from all the drones & bombs during the Obama administration? And why? What is the justification? If Hillary had been elected, she was pushing for a no-fly zone over Syria which would have meant immediate confrontation with Russia – a nuclear superpower and our newly created 2nd Cold War enemy. World War 3 anyone? Looks like that might possibly be where we are headed either way.

    I guess my point is this- in my own Christian faith and commitment – I have been shaken to my core and moved to step out of this GOP/Trump/conservatives = BAD & Dems/ Hillary &Obama/ liberal = GOOD mindset. One may have been the “lesser evil” last November and yes – Trump is beyond the pale, but it is my opinion that we all need to be praying harder, looking MUCH MUCH deeper, and waking up to the atrocities and the toll on humanity that is occurring and has been occurring for quite awhile. The only way to stop it is to challenge our typical black & white thought processes and move into a more post- partisan reality.

    We need to challenge ourselves, We need to take our blinders off and get everyone we know to RESIST with all our collective might EVIL in ANY FORM or from ANY ADMINISTRATION that allows it to continue.

    There is no party of peace any longer. After 35+ years as a Democratic voting, progressive Christian…it has practically killed me to come to the realization that the party I’ve identified with my entire adult life cannot claim moral superiority in issues of human rights and peace any longer.

    So sure, I agree that Trump is to be despised and resisted at every turn. But, whether you or anyone here agrees with me or not, we’ve been doing a pretty horrible job respecting those “brown lives” ourselves, by what we’ve allowed.

    It’s time to look deeper, sort through the propaganda, consider alternative sources with an open-minded prayerful attitude, and think that just maybe we need to resist the lies, the acts of war and evil itself in whatever form it takes or name it has.

    • You’re not welcome here if you believe Obama, Hillary, or anyone with a (D) after their name has ever done anything wrong. The left is blameless. They are totally without fault. Please take your reasoned argument elsewhere. You’re invading my safe space.

        • You all just keep proving the paradigm you are stuck in and blaming us for noticing. I know you won’t believe this, but you are the problem. The Church is chasing people like you and running people like us and John Pavlovitz away. I know the Lord works in mysterious ways but the Republican Church is not going to have mass appeal for long.

      • Dear Anonymous,
        I am a registered Democrat, and I despise DT (so much so that I find it distasteful to even use his name), not because he is a Republican, but because he is an insane megalomaniac who has pulled off and ego-driven, self-serving sales job on the ignorant, confused, and disenfranchised members of our citizenry.

        I may not agree with most Republican viewpoints, but there are and have been, some very good and ethical Republicans in our government. (Abraham Lincoln comes to mind)

        I do agree with nearly all Democratic positions, but there have been some very negative and unethical behaviors exhibited in the Democratic Party (Anthony Weiner’s sexting, Eliot Spitzer’s infidelity with prostitutes, John Kennedy’s affairs, and even Franklin Roosevelt’s alignment with Joseph Stalin and estrangement of Winston Churchill during WWII). Democrats are not perfect, nor are they blameless. They are human beings, and they cannot possibly be !00% blameless or without fault. I’m pretty sure that’s the sole domain of God.

        Having said all of that, I just want to add that this is not YOUR blog, it is John’s, and you don’t speak for anyone else here. It is not up to you to tell Kate that she is not welcome. She was not the slightest bit offensive, demeaning, or inappropriate. That you don’t agree with her does not give you any right to say that she is not welcome here. She is welcome here, and I thought what she had to say was valid and insightful – and I agree with some of what she had to say. On the other hand, I totally disagree with you and your attitude toward her – it WAS offensive, demeaning and inappropriate. And since this is not MY blog, and since I do not speak for everyone else here, I cannot tell you that you are not welcome here, nor would I want to.

        • ” I despise DT (so much so that I find it distasteful to even use his name), not because he is a Republican, but because he is” … {whatever excuses take your fancy} … making the rest of your comment exceedingly useless to any rational being.

          Congrats.

          • James Dosher, you can dismiss his comments as you like, but you are wrong that his comment is “exceedingly useless to any rational being”, not even close in fact. It is the passionate defense of this con-man that makes rational people so afraid for our nation, not the people willing to stand up and say that his unstable, cruel ignorance is not Christian, not uniting, not credible and not working. History will see the truth we already know.

            • Ms. Saunders … they cannot even bring themselves to write down the person’s name? Who is the source of this distress? Sauron? Hastur? Beetlejuice?

              For Pete’s sake, the person in question is the President of the United States. That is the REALITY of the situation. Someone’s inability to write those freaking words makes me suspect to whatever else they post.

              It is a name. It is highly rude, insulting and childish not to use it. The character of the person named is not the matter in question – the character of the poster is. After all, we freely scribe those of ‘Adolph Hitler’, Mao Zedong’ and ‘Josef Stalin’ without repercussions and they all killed millions of their own civilian populaces less than a century ago.

              If someone has such an irrational hatred of our President they can’t even make the fourteen key strokes necessary to enter his name … it is a strong indicator to me the rest of that person’s post will be poisoned by their miasmic vision.

              ***

              Put it this way ~ how could your rationally approach a discussion if someone referred to everything man-made as ‘planet-killing’ ~ from the mpg of a new car, to fertilizers, to coal-fired power plant emissions, to genetically designed crops, to the amount of methane a decomposing body gives off => all ‘planet-killing’.

              Great … we now all now you are a proponent of man-made Climate Change.

              The terminology gets old pretty fast.

              Worse, it is counter-productive ~ entrenching those in opposition … over a name.

              ***

              Not using the name is rude. All I’m asking for is a bit of civility by respecting long established tradition.

              • James Dosher, if you are looking for “a bit of civility by respecting long established tradition” sympathy, you will need to ask it of someone who did not daily see 0bama, Obummer, Obammy, Bathhouse Barry, Captain Clueless, Chairman Bow, Che Obama, and worse.

              • James Dosher,

                You do not know me. How dare you make accusations about my character or the validity of my statements. I am not going to waste too much time here trading barbs. I will just say that I’ve spent too many years in service to this country to tolerate that kind of sideways nonsense from idiots like you.

                And, although it had nothing to do with my post, I feel I must remind you that you are not a scientist. Your opinion on climate change is a complete waste of space on this page. I AM a scientist and I am telling you that you have absolutely no idea what you are talking about. You are wrong. Period. My fifteen-year-old niece could take you to school on climate science, and she’s not even a geophysicist.

                Well, that’s about my limit. I have to get back to my job, ensuring that our country is safe – even for people like you, James.

                • Edward M, Thank you, as usual you are so correct. We missed your comments, glad to have you back. Peace and Love Friend.

            • Thank you, Sandi. By the way, how are you doing in the last couple of days? I’m thinking about you and praying for your comfort.

              • Thanks Edward, I am still very much grieving and girding myself for the funeral ritual which I rather despise. My father died when I was 23 and it was a very traumatic loss, the funeral was like a Twilight Zone episode and it is a deja vu situation every time I have to attend one.

                She was my North Star (and she always will be) and I know she is in Heaven but the loss is hard. The world is emptier, sadder and diminished even if it does not know it.

                • I agree about funerals. That is why I won’t let them have one for me, they are to party. I think that is much better. For what it’s worth there are a lot of people here who care and will be thinking of you and holding you up. Peace and Love,

                  • Thanks Kathleen, I totally agree about not having one. My husband and I have discussed it and have planned ours. Cremation, no service, just an obit we write. Cheaper, easier and much less stressful for those who will be grieving us.

                    Tomorrow is the estate auction for an aunt who passed in November and the funeral for my dear friend is Monday. Not fun times, but I am so grateful to have had them in my life!

                    • We really are on the same plain. My husband and I have opted for cremation and then they are to have a party and scatter us in the woods. Earth to Earth, that way I help my beautiful trees. I will be thinking of you and please know that we care. Peace and Love

                • Sandi,

                  I am so sorry for your loss. And I cannot begin to grasp what it would be like to lose my dad or mom at 23. Your words describe so clearly the empty ache at the loss of a loved one. I have experienced the loss of family and close friends, and there is no escape from the pain. My heart genuinely goes out to you. Although it is a mere speck in the grand scheme of things, I just put a yellow rubber band on my right wrist to remind me that you are grieving. Even if briefly, I will send a prayer of comfort your way every time I look down and see it, and I will keep it there until it wears out. As Kathleen says, Peace…

                  • Thanks very much Edward, that means more to me than I can express. Sometimes just the thought that someone cares and is sending a good thought or a prayer means everything.

                    I think that is why John Pavlovitz’s blog has become so special to me. The hurt is easing, the pain is dulled, the confusion is clearing for all of us baffled by the campaign, election and administration of Trump but the passion will remain, the mission to be closer to Jesus goes on, the need to be the armor for what matters is still real, maybe more than ever before.

                    My favorite quotes keep me: “And know that I am with you always; yes, to the end of time.”

                    “Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world; indeed, it’s the only thing that ever has.” ~Margaret Mead

                    “Experience keeps a dear school, but a fool will learn in no other.” ~Ben Franklin

      • When President Obama went to Congress for authorization for military action in Syria several years ago and again just last year, Anon, the GOP refused it.

        So tell me, child, what were you spouting about Obama?

        Trump promised a genius plan to take out ISIL within 30 days of assuming the office because he knew more about that than even our military leadership.

        So where is it, Anon?

        • You are right, Mr. Kessler. Why didn’t President Obama strike a … clearly identified military target such as a military airbase long before this?

          It wasn’t like A) President Trump has become an expert on the Syrian Government’s positions overnight, B) got lucky by slapping his hand on a map and saying ‘strike here!’

          Nah. Far more likely the Pentagon has been observing the situation ~ for years ~ and after the chemical attack, which simply IS NOT ALLOWED under multiple International Conventions, some officers in the Pentagon gave President Trump a list of carefully considered options.

          He chose one which would avoid ‘war-fighter’ casualties yet damages beyond repair several aircraft worth tens of millions of dollars apiece plus destroys fuel bunkers and maintenance, air traffic control & air defense facilities ~ basically making one air base worthless to Assad.

          Now, the next time Assad decides to cross that ‘Red Line’, he has a far clearer price what the price will be.

          ***

          The difference for President Trump is this simple – this week he WAS President and the Buck stopped with Him. A military used chemical weapons on its populace and he had the power to punish the responsible party. Life is very different when you have the authority.

          ***

          As for immigration ~ I apologize for bursting your bubble, but there is no reason for that position to have changed.

          Syria for the Syrians!

          The Travel Ban wouldn’t have saved any of those people as none of them were in refugee camps – the first stage for people fleeing Syria and coming to the US.

          ***

          As a final note (& using your logic): For all of you who voted for President Obama in 2012 ~ SHAME! Those dead children an thousands more like them are on your heads. You voted for the President who took no effective action against the Assad Regime which did this.

          Nothing President Trump did required authorization from Congress. Fleet deployments and drone strikes are at the discretion of the Chief Executive. Obama was aware of the chemical weapon stockpiles and Assad’s willingness to use them. He chose to do far too little, far too late.

          • James Dosher: Donald J. Trump ✔ @realDonaldTrump
            “The only reason President Obama wants to attack Syria is to save face over his very dumb RED LINE statement. Do NOT attack Syria,fix U.S.A.” 7:13 AM – 5 Sep 2013

            Donald J. Trump‏Verified account @realDonaldTrump
            “Obama wants to unilaterally put a no-fly zone in Syria to protect Al Qaeda Islamists http://thebea.st/143tmfM Syria is NOT our problem.” 8:58 AM – 29 May 2013

            Donald J. Trump‏Verified account @realDonaldTrump
            “President Obama, do not attack Syria. There is no upside and tremendous downside. Save your “powder” for another (and more important) day!” 3:21 AM – 7 Sep 2013

            Donald J. Trump‏Verified account @realDonaldTrump
            “How bad has our “leader” made us look on Syria. Stay out of Syria, we don’t have the leadership to win wars or even strategize.”
            11:28 AM – 30 Aug 2013

            “You have Russia that’s now there. Russia’s on the side of Assad, and Russia wants to get rid of ISIS as much as we do, if not more, because they don’t want them coming into Russia . Let Syria and ISIS fight. Why do we care?” Trump September 2015

            “I would have stayed out of Syria and wouldn’t have fought so much against Assad.” Trump May 2016

            “I think going in was a terrible, terrible mistake. Syria, we have to solve that problem because we are going to just keep fighting, fighting forever. I have a different view on Syria than everybody else.” Trump November 2016

            “I think the status and the longer-term status of President Assad will be decided by the Syrian people.” Secretary of State, Rex Tillerson, April 2, 2017

            President Obama asked Congress to either stand by him in a strike or allow Assad to get away with murdering children with chemical weapons and they chose not to back Obama. For you to claim he should have made a strike anyway is utterly childish! For Trump to claim he even has a foreign policy is lunacy!

            • Not President.

              Now President.

              Life is VERY different when you are the one with the power to act and by acting, can save lives.

              Trump criticized President Obama. I did too. Millions did. That didn’t matter. He was President and we weren’t.

              Furthermore, Trump was right ~ we didn’t have the ‘Leadership’ in 2013 to fix things in Syria. President Obama wanted to micro-manage every single military encounter which is no way for military to function.

              Lastly, this action centers around whether, or not, the Syria government used chemical weapons. If so, could our President allow ANYONE to do so when it is stated policy to treat a chemical weapon attack the same way we would a biological, or nuclear attack.

              It happening in Syria was tertiary to the fact such weapons were use. The secondary factor was the weapons being used on civilians – a big humanitarian issue for all civilized nations.

              An issue to me is that Trump may have acted without getting all the data. I have been hearing some things suggesting the Syrian air strike actually hit a terrorist stockpile home-brewed chemical weapons, thus the effects.

              ***
              {minor essay ~ feel free to tune out}

              What happened was the moment ISIS rolled over the Iraqi border and the Iraqi Army got into trouble, we should have acted decisively. We didn’t.

              Iraqi soldiers, when he knows the US will support them, fight hard. Without that support both on the ground and in the air, they lose cohesion. We have seen this time and time again.

              So, instead of sending in roughly a division worth of ground assets, four, or five air wings and two carrier groups ~ 35,000 ~ we have seen tens of thousands murdered. Hundreds of thousands raped and enslaved. Millions upon millions displaced.

              We would have tossed ISIS back over the border. Then, with some arm-twisting in Jordan and Saudi Arabia, we would have ‘aided’ the Iraqi Army in following ISIS over the border and putting and end to them – an Arab Army could have suppressed ISIS.

              At that point, the strongest force in Syria would have been the Iraqi/Jordanian/Saudi coalition with the regional credibility to force the pro-democracy Syrian Rebels into one camp with Assad in another. With Iran and Russia, they could have brokered cease-fire with a slow deescalation / disarmament.

              The critical part of all that was the Iraqi Army had to be somewhat ‘threatening’ as opposed to ‘in need of saving’. That is because the a ‘strong’ Iraqi Army could be seen as keeping Kurdish ambitions in the region in check.

              Instead, the Iraqi Army was allowed to collapse, swaths of Iraqi territory were overrun and Mosul taken. Into this gap, the Kurdish Peshmerga and Shiite Militias had to rescue the Iraqi state. The Iraqi Army is no just a bit player inside their own country. The Turks (who have, by far, the largest army in the region) don’t like either the Shiites, or the Kurds.

              To add to the ‘bad’, Assad’s faction is Shiite as well, so they are getting armed support from Hezbollah out of Lebanon as well as material and financial support from ~ Shia Iran. Russia has Cold War ties to the Assad Regime so they are supporting Assad too.

              Since there is no contender who can replace Assad because the country has become such a mess … we are all screwed.

            • If what you claim is true, that means, a presidential candidate said something during the campaign he later contradicted once in office.

              Does anyone know if this has happened before? Or is this another thing that only President Trump has ever done, bringing us one step closer to the collapse of the republic?

                • I’m not saying no biggie. There’s multiple anonymous comments here, so the odds of you knowing anything about how I would respond are slim to none. My point was that you, like a great many others, find fault in the behavior of republicans, while twisting yourself in knots excusing dems who do engage in the same behavior.

                  • “My point was that you, like a great many others, find fault in the behavior of republicans, while twisting yourself in knots excusing dems who do engage in the same behavior.”

                    Here’s another liar. You havent found anyone here excusing Democrats for engaging in the same behavior because what has been asserted about Dems by those on the Christin right have been repeatedly proven to be lies.

                    Over and over again. And we will continue to expose lies. Over and over again.

                    Go hang out on uberdoofus.com where the lies you tell will be embraced.

                    I gotta go to bed.

      • That is an outright lie. There are many things I did not like about Obama Administration , but there were many more I did like and there would have been even more if repug congress had not blocked so many of his efforts.
        Ever since Reagan the repug party has spewed nothing but hate, bigotry and prejudice about anyone who is not a WASP.
        And people like you just continue to back that hate, bigotry and prejudice and then try to claim the higher moral ground because only repugs are true christians. NOT!

        • oh, gdd, Anonymous has neve gotten the message that we of the left don’t consider it to be truth “Obama, Hillary, or anyone with a (D) after their name has ever done anything wrong. The left is blameless. They are totally without fault. ”

          That is just the bigotry, prejudice, and the racism of Anonymous spewing lies, poison, and venom.

          Anonymous has never accepted that it is the way people write, full poison, venom, and vitriol, that is unwelcome. Cowardly Anonymous will never accept that because it means Anonymous would have to take responsibility for the way Anonymous chooses to write.

          Disagreements are welcome. Many of us disagree with each other. We don’t tell lies when we disagree. When we disagree we offer evidence and facts. We ue polite language.

    • I regret to inform you that your fairness and empathy will not be well-received here and will not be considered. JP and his followers see things only in black and white. Trump is evil. Those who voted for him are evil. Anything Trump does or doesn’t do is evil. Even good things that Trump does are evil. Anything that Obama or Hillary did is good, and anything bad they did is also good. For good measure if “pigmentation” can somehow be added into the mix, motivations of white supremacy or anti-brownskin will be ascribed.

      Trump and his followers are scapegoats, plain and simple and JP and his followers are enjoying their orgy of hate and judgment. I’m surprised they have had the energy to keep it going so long.

        • Gloriamarie, First, and most importantly, how are you today?. Second, actually I think he has several today, or he has a twin. Trump Supporter sounds a lot like him.
          Take care of yourself,
          Peace and Love

        • Hello Gloriamarie! I am so glad to see you post here. I must admit my lack of empathy for the members of the Syrian military that purposefully attacked innocent people with chemical weapons, and it disturbs me greatly. I want to love everyone, but when we need to go to war against people using such terrible weapons on innocent people I cannot justify advocating peace at all cost and I will support war, which I know is against what Jesus teaches us. How can I resolve this?

          • I am not sure. If you figure it out let me know. I come from a long line of Pacifists do must admit I lean that way but wow it’s difficult. I understood WWII so….I think you will find a lot of us have the same problem. Peace,

            • Amen, amen and amen again. I am compelled to stop harm, but when the only way to stop these people over here from being harmed is to harm those people over there…. I am torn and lost and glad that there people who can make decisions because I cannot.

            • Robin, our God is nothing if not Just.

              He has no qualms about annihilating evil from the face of the earth. Evil cannot even be in the same room as God! How about standing for Justice?

              • Unlike others in my community I believe using violence should be used if, and only if, there is no other way. If there is ANY alternative to violence we need to do so. Everybody has some good and evil in them. Even the good people can do evil things at times and evil people can do good things at times. So, if that is true then why be to quick to use military force? I believe if many in my community has their way they would have bombed North Korea with nukes long ago and started World War 3 because “we are justified in doing so”. Instead we uphold a cease fire.

                You see, I believe conflicts can be, and will we, resolved by talking, either to prevent a war or after a war. Negotiations are what truly end wars, not killing everyone on one side. Negotiations ended our war with Germany, ended our war with Japan, and nearly every other war. G-d wants justice, love, and peace. I don’t think he would be too proud of us if we used force when talking could have solved the problem. Sometimes, regretfully, people act in a way that makes us resort to force but that is part of free will, isn’t it?

          • Oh, Robin, I don’t know that I can give any kind of answer that makes sense.

            There is something so very fundamentally wrong with the idea that violence is the way to respond to violence. I have been unable to really believe there has been a good enough reason to go to war ever since I was old enough to understand what was going on in Vietnam.

            Had I lived in the days of WW2, I am sure I would have been greatly conflicted. Desert Storm made no sense to me except it was about oil.

            I opposed the invasion of Afghanistan, even as I understood the John Wayne mentality that caused use to invade it. I knew when I saw the plane go through the second tower that we are at war, we just didn’t know with whom yet. But I wanted us to find an alternative. Too many Afghani civilians have suffered.

            The invasion of Iraq was Just Plain Wrong and a war crime. There was no reason to invade Iraq and if the conservative right hate ISIS, well, congratulations, the invasion of Iraq created it and that invasion was a result of the conservative right. That administration told us huge lies which too many liberal, not this one, found compelling enough to support the invasion, only to see how foolish we were.

            It is beyond horrible that those civilians were gassed. The only word I have to describe it is “evil” and that just doesn’t seem like a dreadful enough word.

            But does it bring them back to life if we start killing people? Look what happened in India when Gandhi simply allowed his “no” to be a “no.”

            I can’t remember a day in my life when the news did not cover war somewhere or the other.

            Jesus tells us to love. Love unconditionally. I cannot, I simply cannot, find that compatible with acts of violence.

            I have learned many times over that living with Jesus means living a life in tension between what I believe God calls us to and the human nature that Jesus askes me to improve upon.

            Invading Syria will mean more civilians are killed. If not cause worse stuff to happen such as WW3 and Armageddon. Of course, the latter 2 might be on my mind as I live in military target.

            • Well, since we attacked Syria, and now have Assad’s attention, I hope our government, the Syrian government, and the Russian government can talk and come to an agreement. We all must eventually talk, even at the end of a war. I view post war agreements as very powerful because they can be enforced for centuries, assuring peace or fewer and smaller battles. For example, North and South Korean cease fire, one of the weakest post war agreements brokered, has kept both countries from resuming the war for decades. It all comes down to talking.

              • It does… but when are ever going to get out of Afghanistan or Iraq? When will that discussion start?

            • ISIS was not created by the invasion of Iraq. The Islamic State traces its beginnings to pre 9/11 Afghanistan. They moved to Iraq following the US led invasion in October of 2001. The goal of the Islamic State is to establish an Islamic Caliphate in accordance with their interpretation of holy Islamic texts. Everything they do is designed to further that goal. This would be their goal regardless of whether we invaded Iraq or Afghanistan. They have fanatical religious motivations, demonstrated by their hatred above all for fellow muslims who don’t follow their beliefs. In the eyes of ISIS, Muslim “apostates” are unforgivable sinners, more so than Christians, or even Jews. Nothing we have done has caused that.

      • Dear Make America Great Again:

        Manicheanism IS America’s public theology.

        So the association of JP with B&W seems off-topic.

        Blessings!

    • I’m truly blown away with your comment(s) and the incredible depth you you show towards appreciating a perspective that’s not in ‘line’ with this bloggers thinking. I think you are spot on. Thanks so very much, and yes, pray unceasingly.

    • Kate,
      Thank you for your thoughts. I am glad that you are here and that you articulated a very complex and potentially controversial subject so well. I am not sure if I agree with every single thing you said (I have to think about it more), but you brought up some VERY good points. I am a 42+ year Democratic voter, progressive, God-centered individual who also believes that our foreign policy failures (and domestic, for that matter) are truly a bi-partisan creation. I wholeheartedly agree that we must look much, much deeper than the ubiquitous standard opinions and beliefs that bombard us every day. You have given me much food for thought and I thank you.

    • Well-said. The industrial military complex clearly controls both major parties and has for some time. Since 9/11 we have succumbed to fear and are trapped in a never-ending war with no attainable objective as Orwell described so prophetically in his novel 1984.

    • Well Kate, your passion is to be admired and you came close, but still missed it by a mile or so. The problem here is not John Pavlovitz’s “typical black & white thought processes” or his refusal as you see it to “move into a more post- partisan reality”.

      The problem, and I agree it has been a problem for a long, long time is the mindset that serving the Lord involves political parties at all!

      You would not have to “step out of this GOP/Trump/conservatives = BAD & Dems/ Hillary &Obama/ liberal = GOOD mindset” if the Christian Right had not pushed political action into church to the point you had to pick a” mindset”.

      You assume because John P and many others are distraught that America elected the vile, incompetent Trump he would be applauding whatever Clinton would have done and that is not true, the convictions he is sharing would be his convictions no matter who was in office. His and our fear might not have been as acute because she was sane, stable, knowledgeable and experienced. She also did not run as a racist, bigoted, xenophobic war monger, but to act as if everyone gave Obama a pass and would have done the same for Clinton is not honest.

      It is also our “opinion that we all need to be praying harder, looking MUCH MUCH deeper, and waking up” but not just “to the atrocities and the toll on humanity that is occurring and has been occurring for quite awhile”, but to the politicization of our churches who should be leading the humanitarian way not toeing a party line!

      The only ” blinders” we need to take off are the ones blinding us to the teachings of Jesus and applying those teachings in our lives such that we do not look just like the rest of the world. They should know us by our love, not Trump or Clinton hats.

      If we had that kind of power back we could “RESIST with all our collective might EVIL in ANY FORM or from ANY ADMINISTRATION”, but we lost that and we lost many people in the pews because of it.

      There is never has been a “party of peace”, not in the Bible and not in American history. Democrats have made war and caused harm just like Republicans have made war and caused harm.

      Democrats have and still are social justice warriors but that has been all but drowned out by the Christian Right being totally Republican regardless of domestic needs. So you are wrong to claim that Democrats “cannot claim moral superiority in issues of human rights and peace” any longer, we just can’t claim peace can always be kept. And the Democrats have fought harder for “those “brown lives” than Republicans have. That is just a fact, imperfect as they are.

      John is demanding that the church and her people “look deeper, sort through the propaganda, consider alternative sources with an open-minded prayerful attitude” too. He clearly believes that is the only way we can begin to “resist the lies, the acts of war and evil”.

      This is not a totally new thing, the church has been slow or on the wrong side of history before. If we cannot right our ship and get the politics out of it, our failed entity will have less and less effect on the world and more and more heartache.

      Reverend Pavlovitz is fighting more than just Trump here. And clearly loving the church and begging them to open their eyes has not worked.

      • That, my friend, was perfect. We would do well to look to those “good christian people” in Europe who looked the other way during WWII. How quickly we forget. Peace and Love,

        • Kathleen,

          I sure do wish you would instantly appear every time I show up and remind me of the bottom-line before I get started. Sometimes, when I get lost or confused here, I will come across something you’ve posted and I am reminded of what is truly important – unfortunately, it is often after I’ve already gotten off course. Ah, learning and growing. Please give my regards to the heroic submariner minister in your life.

          • That is very kind of you, and I will give those well wishes to him. He turns 79 tomorrow. Wasn’t an easy feat for him but I am sure glad he made it. It is so easy to get pulled down those rabbit holes, so don’t be hard on yourself.

      • Sandy, Exactly! Thank you for your comments and rationality
        , although I know many here won,t /can’t tell truth from propaganda lies.They claim we are the haters but John has never said he hates anyone and has many times said that he , as an imperfect human, tries to love those who disagree with him and prays for them. He preaches love, and anti-hate, anti-bigotry and anti-prejudice, but in some minds this is somehow . hateful. Go figure! Wish there many more JPs in this world.

        • Oh Ellen, I wish there were more like him too, The church could get back on track with more voices telling the truth instead of political spin!

          • Dang, Sandi! Your reply to Kate (3, or so, up) was very insightful. I agree with her general idea that the chaos of many US policies is not one sided. And, I am pissed-off at my own party for not stepping up against right-wing B.S., and also dropping the ball on many things. BUT, I missed the point. You ARE correct that we have always been the champions of social justice, and whether we have blinders on or not, that fact still remains true. Further, your statement, “…should know us by our love, not Trump or Clinton hats” brought the clarity that I needed. Why can’t I seem to get to the bottom-line, that is, God, sooner?

            I know I’ve got Kathleen, and I think I need to gather up you and Ellen, too, to help me stay “on track” when I show up here and start getting lost in the rhetoric.

            Thank you.

            • I think our job here and why it is so important is that we can keep each other sane and on track, when the noise of hate becomes overwhelming. At least that is how I see it, that by being around like minded souls I don’t feel lost and alone. So we all need to hold each other up. Keep us out of the rabbit holes or pull us out when we fall in. Peace and Love,

            • Thanks Edward, but I am just as apt to let my anger take me down a rabbit hole as to make a good point. I am an old-fashioned struggling follower of Christ. I am not so fond of the religion that claims to speak for him though.

              You, I find impressive, and I do not say that lightly. Delighted to meet you!

        • So, Kate, we liberals should move into a “post partisan reality” after the gop 1: spent 8 years waging an all but declared war on Obama 2: spent decades accusing liberals of being communists/socialists and certainly anti-American, 3: are busy destroying the safety net and the environment so they can give more fellatio to the rich 4: suppressed the vote via gerrymandering and that fake voter fraud b.s., 5: got an ignorant arrogant sociopath elected POTUS, 6: preaching hysteria against, among others, Muslims and 7: engineered a theft of a Supreme Court seat on false pretenses and then whined like brats that the Democrats dared to filibuster Gropenfuhrer’s pick?

          Really? I won’t say my reply to that but it’s a two word phrase containing a four letter word followed by a three letter word.

    • Right on, Kate. I also agree very much with John’s take on the trump mindset that allows them to reject Syrian child and baby refugees while condoning warfare in response to such children dying because no one would take them in. Clinton’s statements yesterday make it clear the U.S. military response would be the same. The difference would be that under democrats, more refugees could have found a new home in the U.S.

    • Kate, I came to the same conclusions after I found out Obamas’s administration had been cruelly bombing Yemen and it went unreported in the mainstream media, “The U.S. dropped an average of 72 bombs every day — the equivalent of three an hour — in 2016, according to an analysis of American strikes around the world.” January 9th 2017– NBC News

      Judging by the world’s reaction to Trump’s missile attack many of the nations that thought he was a loose cannon are now supporting his move because of the opportunistic “chemical weapons” incident. It’s the excuse they were waiting for.

  12. Yay we have a real man in the Oval Office again!

    Snowflake heads will be exploding trying to twist this bold act of justice into something evil (though if Obama had done it, they’d be cheering).

    And what is really going to gall them is that his approval numbers are gong to jump.

    • What, exactly, changed them from poisonous skittles to precious children of God? All of a sudden Trump cares about brown children?
      I am not buying it. It’s the Military Industrial Complex wanting to play with their war toys.

      • that explains why – Senate and House minority leaders Chuck Schumer and Nancy Pelosi endorsed President Donald Trump’s missile strike on Syria.

        • Exactly, the Dems aren’t any better. America has a military war machine monster that needs to be fed and exercised on a regular basis.

      • Think for yourself and don’t parrot JP’s race baiting with that “brown people” crap. His obsession with skin color and exploiting it doesn’t have to be yours.

        • Let’s face it Trump’s words were a calculated script and didn’t sound like him at all since he equates Syrian nationals with terrorism and refuses them entry …. then cue in a segment describing sexy Tomahawk missiles. Sickening.

        • I would have to agree. Seperating people by race is not good. Disparaging pne race over another is low thinking. Dr King was right. Dont betray the legacy

      • Anony, you are likely spot on! Those same pictures did not move him in 2013. This is a great opportunity to take some heat off the Russian connections that keep unfolding and the incompetence at every level of our one party ruled nation. Sadly, the Christians will be among those applauding loudest. And we expect them to recognize the Anti-Christ?

          • No gdd, he warned Russia first and I am sure they are only going to posture as they help Assad rebuild. They got what they wanted.

            • Funny how Russia came out and condemned the missile strike,

              ” Russia and Syria have condemned the first US military strike against the Syrian regime, launched after a chemical weapons attack that killed dozens of civilians earlier in the week.

              The Russian president, Vladimir Putin, denounced the strike on a Syrian airfield as “act of aggression” Friday and said it violated international law. ” April 7 2017, CNN

              is something fishy going on?

            • Dear Sandi Saunders:

              The Russians have many planes and other materials in Syria. Did they have enough warning to move them?

              Russia has been a target for many years. The ruling class has never forgotten or forgiven the working class for the October revolution. The ruling class is utterly determined to gain access to the resources in Russia, China and Asia. It is absolutely committed to do so at whatever human cost is necessary.

              Blessings!

                • Dear Sandi Saunders:

                  In context, it looks like the ruling class. That would be the 1%, with the treacherous support of the other 9%. Otherwise, known as the bourgeoisie and petty-bourgeoisie respectively.

                  Blessings!

                  • Oh gdd, I have spent too many years refusing to believe conspiracy stories to start now. If they are that coordinated, we are doomed and Trump is not the end, but just the beginning. I need my sanity so I cannot go there…

                    • Dear Sandi Saunders:

                      Conspiracy theory and class analysis have nothing in common. And ‘false flag’ operations well known [ex: the Reichstag fire]. And yes, the ruling class is very well organized. But however grim our situation, we are by NO means ‘doomed.’

                      The thing that will stop the madness is a politically-aware working class, united by a working class program. That will bring the ruling-class US war machine to its knees. That is why any hint of socialism is anathema.

                      Yet a working class program is the ONLY way that increasingly reckless actions can be prevented. And they must be presented, for otherwise, one will eventually result in worldwide catastrophe.

                      Blessings!

                    • gdd, I hope you don’t mind if I jump in here and make a comment. The problem I have with Marxist theory is that it would be highly unlikely for the working class to unite… for a few reasons.

                      1) not enough time– they work too hard and don’t have enough leisure time to spend recruiting, planning, finding a consensus or being a cohesive movement.

                      2) no motivation– people are consumed by their lives and social distractions, tv, film, recreation, shopping….these concerns predominate their thinking. People would much rather drown their anxieties than fix the problem.

                      3) leadership vacuum or conflict– most people are followers and most leaders attract narrow followings. Rather than having broad based appeal leaders tend to gather like minded people around them. People are diverse and opinionated. It seems to me people cannot agree on which issue is the most important so they fight and bicker until another leader stands up and takes a bunch of followers with him. Groups will always divide and become other distinct groups that don’t cooperate with each other. This happens over and over until one group dominates. Recruiting hardcore followers is a big part of a movement this is why so many movements die out because they lose steam. Leaders can be a problem because they hate giving up control….it’s human nature.

                      Human willfulness and drive to control, resources and people, will continue on. The control of, the few and the strong authoritative leader or king, has always ruled– the many through violence and domination…and look how much people (including christians love a strong or charismatic leader) i.e.. their strange adoration of Trump.

                      The leaders, the tyrants the kings of the world make treaties or have wars or sanction one other depending on what they think they can get away with or how strong their army or how good their economy is. They don’t really want peace they are waiting for their moment to start something so they can get more…and people don’t know how to get to peace because there is always something to distract them or cause them to be dependant on their government for protection and sustenance.
                      Even those who think smaller government and less taxes means they have more control over their lives …are just kidding themselves.

                      I saw this quote today on a poster:

                      When all the trees have been cut down,
                      when all the animals have been hunted,
                      when all the waters are polluted,
                      when all the air is unsafe to breathe,
                      only then will you discover you cannot eat money.
                      ~ Cree Prophecy

                    • Dear Sally Jane Davis:

                      You are most welcome to ‘jump in.’

                      1] You make an astute observation. Yet continually mounting crises, the inability of the political class to resolve any single crisis, and [above all] the ever-mounting danger of a new, world war, will motivate the working class to become a cohesive movement. It is unite or perish.

                      2] Your second point is related to the first. The answer is not pleasant, but our rising misery index will correct our ways.

                      3] Leadership development is an ongoing issue for the socialist program. It does and is happening. And opportunism is among the greatest challenges. But as social conditions degrade, the working class will unite for the socialist program as it is published as the answer to the current, ongoing crises.

                      Your paragraph beginning ‘human willfulness and drive to control’ is a very perceptive critique of the Capitalist system of political economy. You are so right that it so often appeals to the very worst in us to divide and rule us.

                      And when you say that ‘they don’t really want peace,’ you sum the extreme hypocrisy and true nature of the ruling class.

                      The Cree Prophecy is most telling. And I believe that if you studied it, you would find that on environmental protection, habitat, animal life, rivers, healthy air, etc. – the Socialist Equality Party program is in strong agreement with that vision.
                      The ‘human nature’ point is a good one. I contend that it is our nature which necessitates the democratization of social, economic and political power. In fact, I really don’t read your points as arguing against socialism at all. On the contrary, I think they demonstrate its necessity! Thank you for that!

                      In closing, if it seems that there is not ‘time enough,’ know that it is only in the very last stages of working class unity that you begin to see the mass movements. The spat of protests after the Nov 8 election will not stop. There is a lull, but they will return with a vengeance unseen in living memory. Tomorrow’s protests will have not scores of thousands, but scores of millions. It will be like the mass protests in Europe over WW I. The ruling class knows this is coming, and is terrified by it. It knows that nothing can be done to stop it.

                      For the rest of us, know that the 1% / next 9% alliance will not prevail against the 90%. POWER to the WORKING CLASS!

                      http://tinyurl.com/humqr67

                      Blessings!

              • gdd– I appreciate your perspective in the comments here and often find a lot to agree with, but lately you are sounding more like a pamphlet than a person. Marx had some good points, but there are errors too. I personally find his view of the poor as monolithic as any Republican today, though in a very different way. Communal ownership is wonderful in theory, but rarely ethically practiced outside indigenous tribal populations. And war was common between those tribes, as evidenced by their language. The word for themselves typically means people, i.e., human. Anyone outside the tribe is a different word- other, and usually also meant enemy.

                We are imperfect people living in an imperfect world and no system is going to be without flaws. I do believe our Constitutional framework is a fairly decent one, in that it gives us the tools to adjust it, if we can summon the will to do so, in spite of its sexist and overtly racist origins from the wealthy colonial elite. Even as is, it allows for a far more robust safety net and a fairer tax system than we currently have (with large corporations and the very rich as the targets to be taxed). We simply have to muster the political will to do so, regardless of political parties. And we must not throw out the good in the quest for an idealized perfection humans will never achieve. I wish you peace and blessings.

                • Dear ami:

                  My writing has undergone a shift.

                  As I see it, the conflict that has erupted will not end with Tomahawk missiles. The drive toward global hegemony cannot be resolved outside an endless series of military escalations. Each of these is and will continue to become more reckless than the one before, leading ultimately to catastrophe.

                  As a United States citizen, I recognize that my nation is the primary driver toward global instability and world hegemony.

                  But I recognize also that it is the responsibility of United States citizens to lead in preventing that otherwise inevitable catastrophe.

                  Dry as it is, the theoretical basis of the dynamics driving this process must be grasped.

                  If I knew a better way to prevent another world war, I’d use it. With President Trump’s apparent shift from the predominately Republican ‘War on North Korea/China’ faction to the predominately Democratic ‘War on Syria/Iran/Russia’ faction, it is apparent that no section of the official political apparatus can be supported by those for whom world war is not an option.

                  So what else can one do?

                  Blessings!

                  • gdd, I am also at a loss of what will fix this situation. We failed to heed the advice given to us by President Eisenhower. He said, “In the councils of government, we must guard against the acquisition of unwarranted influence, whether sought or unsought, by the military–industrial complex.” He saw our military-industrial complex grow legs and going rogue over 50 years ago and now it is an embedded part of our economy and a source of global instability, as global stability is far less profitable.

                    • Dear Robin:

                      I framed my previous post in the hope that it would ‘tease out a reply.’ You gave an excellent reply.

                      You say that you’re at a loss sa to how to fix this situation. Yet your post implies the answer!

                      Having PERMITTED the acquisition of unwarranted influence, we must now take BACK political power for the working class.

                      The whole military/industrial complex must be put under worker control to ensure that the ruling class doesn’t destroy the planet with it.

                      Workers everywhere face the same issues/opposition from the ruling class in their own nations. THEY must deal with THEIR regimes as we must deal with ours. And they are our allies. Workers of the world — UNITE!

                      The ruling class demands to start WW III. We must prevent it at all costs!

                      Blessings!

    • You might be right because sadly the Church is so lost, they will be applauding. It is sad you see that as a good thing. May God have mercy.

    • The real killer of brown children is Planned Parenthood. They kill thousands every month. With the blessings of Pavlovitz and his sycophants.

      • It may seem that way Trump Supporter but this move by Trump is a calculated military move. In my observation, if he truly cared about brown children… he would have wanted Syrian refugees to find sanctuary in the U.S.

      • No Trump Supporter, you are wrong again (imagine that). The real killer of “brown children” and those of every other color are the people who insist the only way to end abortion is to use the force of law against women. Until you work to create the world that supports women, you kill babies. It is really just that simple. And you do it with the blessings of the Christian Right Church.

      • Dear Trump Supporter:

        If the Trump/Tillerson duo gives any indication of things likely to come, North Korea could be months or days from losing all of its 25 million people.

        I contend that this would be a crime against peace and against humanity. Can you? If not, you’re not prolife.

        Blessings!

    • If you think Trump is a “real man” then you don’t know what that term means.

      Trump is a whiny little *****

    • Dear Thank You President Trump:

      Actually, you have a ventriloquist’s dummy in the Oval Office.

      The Presidency no longer exists.
      An un-elected military junta dictates policy to the dummy.

      Blessings!

  13. It’s this hatred of all perspectives other than those of the far left liberals by Mr. Pavlovitz that cause me not to want to try NRCC. As a leader in the church his opinions reflect upon all of the church’s leadership. I have been a few times and each time there was something said that made me, a moderate conservative, to feel insulted and belittled.

    • Well then Anon, you now know exactly how the liberal Christians have felt in church for 2 decades and counting. Welcome to the hot seat. You admit you don’t like it but we are supposed to?

      • Go to a real Church then. Politics are not preached from the pulpit in Catholic Churches. Morality is, however, and liberal Christians might have a problem with that.

        • When It comes to morality, jose, we liberals are ahead of you conservatives.

          As for the Catholic church.. yeah don’t go thinking you conservatives have safety from the hot seat there.

          There is quite the list of Catholic teachings you conservatives fall way short on.

        • No, that is just the propaganda put out by the completely political, ravening, radical, racist, religious, right and their politician backers.

        • Funny thing about that José, I am not real big on the Catholic Church defining morality. That is for many reasons, not the least of which would be their version of shunning miscarried babies for centuries, their hiding and moving sexual predators, their denying victims, their scandalous orphanages, and their hypocrisy on homosexuality and abortion. So, thanks, but no thanks. I like my morality to be, you know, moral.

          • You need to look at what the Church actually teaches, not at what some misguided individuals did or allegedly did 200 years ago. Otherwise it’s as if you’re judging laws and law enforcement by the behavior of bad cops.

            • Joe, you need to look at what your church has done and is doing. Either you do not know, or you do not care. Maybe you are among those who think the good works outweigh the bad, but that seems to be more than you allow for others.

          • Once again, good job. Besides if I had been interested in the Catholic Church I wouldn’t be now because of the mean spirited posts from people who purport to speak for self same church. I do think that their new Pope is a step in the right direction but Joe would drag them back to one of the Pope’s who helped cover for the pedophiles. Peace and Love,

            • Kathleen B, A few months ago joe used to post as Benny. He said it was because his favorite Pope is Benedict 15, the head of the Inquistion and Nazi

              • Gloriamarie, I recalled him saying it was after Saint Benedict — not any Pope.

                If my memory serves me correctly I remember Benny/Joe saying he appreciated the discipline of the Benedictine monks, unless you can verify the comment I don’t think your statement is accurate.

        • Dear José el Catolico (indocumentado-no le digas a Juan):

          Good point. The Roman Catholic … institution … has Neeeeever dabbled in politics.

          Blessings!

    • Church is just that , Club
      Relationship is accountability to a higher calling,
      Accountability for Thoughts, Actions, Words, People you or yours minister to.

      John has the biggest responsibility , people
      Not to be taken lightly as the bible says he faces a stricter judgement from God , The most High

      YOU as people have a even greater responsibility to show, stand with, correct , help , love and support him. The Pastor , Father, Leader

      • Dear Christopher Freeman:

        Club? You seriously wouldn’t pass muster where I live. Think instead of Jesus’ body.

        Blessings!

    • Another coward spewing poison at John P by posting as an anonymous. You probably invented the insult and the belittling because you didn’t like what you saw in the reflection of the mirror.

      Life is too short for the hate you hold, Anon. Release and be free.

  14. The real reason most (not all) want immigrants here is to exploit them for cheap labor to fire up the economy (Germany) If you really care about them dont make them change their culture, launguage, etc. Instead create safe zones. Another point that supports my view is that no one ssys anything about the 60,000,000 plus refugees worldwide. Not eveyone is a cheap laboe explorers. Some are simply a bit innocent of the big picture.

    • Syrian refugees would rather be relocated in their own country, or stay in camps (if conditions improved.). The short fall for refugee camps in Syria last year was about $4 billion.

      [Americans spent $6.5 billion on Halloween Holiday last year. ]

      I’d gladly give up Halloween this year, and give all the money to Refugees in Syria, so they are able to stay in their own language, religion, land & culture. (just like we would prefer to stay in our own country, if situation were reversed.)

      • It is really true. Syrians have an ancient and valued culture, language, and religion. I have been in the homes of Syrians and had dinner. They are incredible people. Can’t believe the world message is “we can’t help you there.” Safe, zones; ah too much trouble. But if you forsake all you own and travel to our country, learn our language and culture (even though you may not like it as much as yours) We will pay you minimum wage or welfare and you can be an American. Where is the care in that?

      • Dear Leslie m.:

        Here’s a radical thought!

        How about Syrian refugees to speak for themselves!

        Wherever they go, that IS their preference.

        I suggest that you keep your Halloween treats, recognize the sovereignty of the Syrian state, leave now and find some other way to resolve Capitalism’s integral contradictions.

        Blessings!

  15. “Why are you crying, Trump supporter?

    I mean, I know why I’m crying, but I’m just a bit confused.”

    And that pretty much explains everything wrong with you and your way of thinking about us. You somehow imagine we have been incapable of human empathy because we don’t do what you do – we aren’t your clones who share your social agenda, or your political leanings.

    Far too often, you appear capable of crying en masse, on demand, anytime, anywhere, over EVERYTHING.

    We cry when a specific matter touches us as individual people due to our unique life experiences. It could be over a lost child, seeing a child orphaned, watching a lone elderly veteran kneeling by a grave, embracing an old friend after a long absence, or after reading Flowers for Algernon.

    It is telling you might see some of us cry and be utterly incapable of re-examining who we might be as opposed to clinging to prejudicial models which now ring hollow.

    You, on the other hand, remain rather sadly predictable, Pastor John.

    • Not sure if I was called a Trump supporter but I am personally very liberal. If my friends thought I was called a conservative they would have a big laugh!!!

    • James Dosher, we don’t “imagine” anything, we see it lived out. To go from decrying and denying refugees to bombing Syria over babies dying is laughable policy. It proves Republicans “incapable of human empathy” and choosing war over other options, not because you don’t do what we do.

      Sure, ya’ll “cry” over an aborted fetus, but not over drowned refugees trying to get to safety. ya’ll “cry” over Christians not allowed to discriminate against the LGBTQ community but not over families being torn apart over deportations. Ya’ll “cry” over your judges not getting voted on but decried the same effort to get Democratic nominees voted on. Ya’ll “cry” over “a lone elderly veteran kneeling by a grave” but are fine with cutting Veteran benefits or denying health care to 9/11 survivors.

      It is telling what you all cry for, and what you don’t. Ya’ll cried over Obama calling a police officer’s actions “stupid” and ya’ll did not cry when Trump mocked a disabled journalist. Ya’ll cried over Michelle Obama showing her arms but ya’ll did not cry over Mrs. Trump’s nude photos. Ya’ll cried over Mrs. Obama daring to want healthy lunches but ya’ll don’t cry when school lunch funds are cut. Ya’ll howled and cried over Weiner’s tweets but defended Trump admitting sexual assault and crude behavior. Ya’ll cried over Obama’s sympathy to dead children’s families but defend Trump’s heinous tweets.

      Ya’ll called Obama a Muslim and call Trump a Christian. Yes sir, at this point I am happily and “utterly incapable of re-examining who” you are.

      • Thank you again Sandi. They will shut down Planned Parent hood which provides maternity and prenatal care and also provides birth control to poor women of all colors (which would cut need for abortions). Planned parenthood abortions are less than 1% of their overall healthcare that they provide. They will cut funding for maternity and prenatal care(so they can give another tax break to the wealthy) which will cause way more infant mortality and add mother mortality as well just to save one fetus. That is what they call pro-life.

      • How about … “Making Syria safe for Syrian children to play in”?

        Or just plain ole “Make Syria Safe”.

        Personally, if we find a way to stop the Syrians from killing one another, they won’t need to emigrate to the US. Their country will stop being a training ground for ISIS.

        Allowing an endless stream of immigrants from impoverished, broken failed states into our country doesn’t solve the issue of why they are coming here in the first place – their devastated homelands.

        I think it is the height of foolishness to think our Nation has an endless capacity to absorb other people. We allow legal immigration by the thousands. We do make exceptions for war refugees too. The issue has always been is how much is too much, not about closing ourselves off entirely.

        As for the rest …
        President Obama has never been a police officer so him judging one probably wasn’t the wisest course of action. But eh, he was the freaking President.

        Trump did NOT mock the disabled journalist. Completely debunked.

        I liked Michelle Obama’s arms. She clearly takes good care of herself. Nude photos of the current First Lady … not something that bothers me either. She was free to take that career path if she desired. As long as it isn’t any of that ex-GF Revenge stupidity, I don’t see the problem.

        The healthy meals initiative was flawed because she didn’t do enough research into what foods kids would actually eat as opposed to what was health for them. Too many ‘healthy meals’ ended up in the trash cans.

        Food lunch funding is normally handed at the local level, isn’t it? I never fail to support a school bond.

        Weiner hitting on an underage girl was all kinds of wrong. My most serious concern was the humiliation he put his wife through. Clinton aide, or not, she didn’t deserve any of that.

        Trump admitted to ‘sexually assaulting’ who? As in the criminal charge of sexual assault that is.

        I don’t support Trump’s crude behavior. It simply doesn’t bother me either … or my wife, or daughter. They can tell the difference between braggadocio and threatening behavior.

        I’m unsure which ‘dead children’s families you are referring to. Trump’s heinous tweets are too numerous to count – tis true.

        I never thought President Obama was a Muslim and corrected those who claimed he was. The only way he was ‘Muslim’ was through a certain interpretation of Sharia in which any child of a Muslim man is also automatically a Muslim. Obama was never raised in that tradition thus isn’t a Muslim.

        Trump … Christian … if he says so. I’m no Pope who can excommunicate those from the faith. I don’t consider him a fanatical believer. Pretty much like every other President of the US he has been raised in the Western Christian tradition, if that helps.

        So … “Yes sir, at this point I am happily and “utterly incapable of re-examining who” you are.”

        Well … have fun keeping your head buried in the sand then. ‘We’ are not all like ‘that’ to the point accusing Trump supporters to be the monsters we are so often claimed to be leaves us at this impasse ~ me the ‘jack-booted supporter of Satan’ and you the richly plumed, smug ostrich.

        • James Dosher, you sure seem big on arguing against things I have not said. What is wrong with you?

          Where did I say I have any problem with a plan to “stop the Syrians from killing one another”? That is a smashing idea, go for it. Or maybe just have an actual plan beyond bombing for effect? Is that too much to ask?

          Where did I ever advocate for “an endless stream of immigrants from impoverished, broken failed states into our country”. Fact is that for every one of those nations we take a portion of a fraction of the refugees other nations have taken or are looking after in “camps”.

          And I never said anything about taking a few refugees would “solve the issue”. You seem bent on just plain making things up. Do you just like to type?

          I agree it would be “the height of foolishness to think our Nation has an endless capacity to absorb other people” especially given the struggling we already have. Which is likely why I have never in my life argued for open borders.

          As for the rest …
          Has Trump ever been half the people he insults and lies about?

          Trump did mock the disabled journalist and no, it has not been even a little bit “debunked”, that is just not true. He has never before or since made those gestures and that voice.

          No one said you alone bawled about Michelle Obama’s arms. But the same heinous people who did, and called her an ape and a man etc never have made a peep about the nudies of Mrs. Trump. That hypocrisy is staggering. THAT is the problem.

          Flawed or not, the criticism was outsized and mean and kids have been wasting food for decades.

          The National School Lunch Program is a federally assisted meal program.

          Weiner sexting was sleaze but so was Trump’s admitting sexual predator behavior and only one mattered to the hypocrites on the right. Just because no one identified the woman he “went after hard” does not mean he was just lying.

          Maybe your wife, and daughter “can tell the difference between braggadocio and threatening behavior” but I would advise them never to be alone with a man like Trump unless they look like Rosie of course, that appears to keep a woman safe from him.

          Yes, “Trump’s heinous tweets are too numerous to count” but still don’t matter like Obama daring to care about the family of a black man killed. Obama’s comments mattered, Trump’s lies do not. That’s both true and hypocrisy writ large!

          Clearly you are not Southern, “Ya’ll” does not mean you as an individual. It meant You all, the right wingers and Trump supporters.
          That you did not think Obama was a Muslim does not mean many didn’t and still do. I heard that often.

          Good idea not to think Trump of Two Corinthians is any kind of practicing Christian. Funny though that the right accepts it “if he says so” but regularly tells me I am no Christian because I am liberal.

          Believe this or not, not wanting to give you the benefit of any doubt does not mean I am keeping my head buried in the sand. You are just not all that.

                • Thank you. It does take a lot to dampen my sense of humor.

                  It’s been a hard week, anniversary of my cat’s death, senseless gassing of civilians, heart attack, air strike, and Gorsuch.

                  But the Holy Spirit has given me a spirit of joy and faith that I am blessed to be able to dip into at will. It is Her gift. her doing. I am grateful.

        • James D. [Obama’s step father was Muslim, and when he lived in Indonesia with his step dad, he was raised Muslim.] (his Mom and his grandparents were Communists (atheists).

          I thought when he declared ‘Jesus Christ is my Lord’ that Muslims would be impressed that he converted to Christianity. (but they thought he wasn’t sincere.)

            • Gloriamarie, Could it be that leslie m. sincerely believes this about Obama’s religious background? If so, then she may be mistaken, but isn’t lying about it. Please stop calling people liars unless you know they are, which you do not.

          • leslie m, I wish I could say I was shocked at how facts and truth pass you by but the lies and hate seem to stick like glue, but I am not. I see the Christian Right has a deep hold on you.

            • Sandi, I think she has a lot of fear of that which is not of her tribe.

              I don’t know how anyone who listened to the eulogy he gave at Mother Emmanuel could possibly doubt Obama loves Jesus. I truly don’t.

      • Dear Sandi Saunders:

        I don’t see how the Syria policy is a Republican thing.

        As I had it, Republicans generally favored tightening the screws on China, while only some Republicans and Democrats preferred making Syria/Iran/Russia the target of the next war.

        Remember Hillary’s ‘tough talk on Russia’ campaign?
        Remember the unsubstantiated ‘Russian hacking’ bit?

        Other points you got right. But you did not point out that when Obama proposed bombing Syria into oblivion, Republicans generally opposed it.

        As I see it, both Republicans and Democrats are in there like dirty rags.

        Blessings!

    • Islamists set up war operations in residential areas, they intersperse themselves with women & children, & don’t wear uniforms.

      It is impossible to defeat them without harming civilians.

      • Yep. ‘Human Shields’ is a long-standing tactic.

        You can defeat it by either exchanging the shields for something of value ~ impossible in this case,

        Somehow rescue the shields ~ the cost to our war-fighters would be prohibitive considering our enemy’s willingness to blow themselves and everything around them, up,

        And simply not let the tactic be effective. The third option is incredibly hard on the psyche of those being forced to partake in such missions as sane people abhor killing the innocent and helpless. Unfortunately, on a large scale, it is the only strategic option which makes sense.

        Oh, and if you think there is option of ‘don’t fight’ then consider this: their willingness to kill will overcome their lack of numbers until they take control of where they are. Eventually, they will come to where you are. Why wouldn’t they? They have a divine mandate which tells them to conquer the world and a winning military doctrine.

        You can’t back away forever. Eventually you will run out of room.

      • Dear leslie m.:

        ‘Islamists’ may set up operations, but who sets up the various rebel groups in the world’s hot spots? Is it not the CIA? Is it not sections of US military intelligence? Have we not done this for many years?

        Have we not sponsored plenty of insurrection movements? We have not overthrown legitimately elected heads of state with coups? We have not installed puppet governments? While decrying China’s currency manipulation, have we ourselves not conducted currency attacks?

        The list of our state crimes and international misdemeanors is long. No nation on earth is guilty of more crimes.

        Moreover, does your post not rationalize defeating civilians? And did not the Nuremberg Tribunal rule that agitation for war crimes is itself a crime? Would that not make you, Leslie m., a political criminal and illegal combatant?

        What ontologically substantive distinction of principal distinguishes so-called ‘legitimate’ states from stateless actors called ‘illegal combatants’ or ‘terrorists?’

        In fact, why should any of the narrative/logic/definitions coming out of the Blight House/CIA/Pentagon in the last 25 years actually be believed?

        Blessings!

  16. Thank you for putting these thought down where Americans and the world may see them. Humanity must consider morality as a grounding base for development and enlightenment. Without morality, a gift of nature to man, we are doomed. Thank you.

  17. Stuff that is missing from the debate: From April 2 to April 8 7 people in Chicago have been shot and killed. over 35 wounded. Check out other big cities. Check out crime in minority neighborhoods or the number of minority children not finishing school. I haven’t seen near the interest in fixing this as I have in bringing in Syrian citizens. Wait…yes I have too. The politicians who make their gratuitous vote for me visit each election.

  18. I am as outraged as you, John, over the atrocity; and as angry at the Trumpers who up until yesterday would have sent those families right into the gas. And now, after a few grisly photos, are willing and eager to rain justice on a land half a world away…so that this can never happen again.
    But at the same time, as we mourn these babies, we’re still looking for justice for 20 American babies who were murdered right here 7 years ago.
    What have we done to make sure THAT will never happen again? What have we done, save thoughts and prayers and a few minutes of silence? The NRA and the politicians in its pocket seem to trump any attempt at sanity…or justice. Maybe we needed more pictures of dead babies.

    • Terry, I am so with you on this. My heart is still broken over those 20 babies and it still wasn’t enough to change the hardened hearts of the NRA and their supporters. No one needs assault weapons, period. It has never been about taking all and I repeat all guns away, but they have been very clever, so that the gun industry can make more money. That is the worst part of it, the disregard for these babies is all about money. Peace,

      • Amen Kathleen and Terry! They love to talk about what “we” are doing to help end crime, what are they doing but enabling it?

      • It’s good that you have such compassion. How much compassion do you have for the 2,000 babies which will be killed by abortion today because of policies YOU SUPPORT?

        • Trump Supporter-

          Clearly, you aren’t here to be constructive. Acting out your personal unhappiness through irrelevant, passive aggressive attacks on others when your emotions are triggered by their statements doesn’t appear to coincide with the same level of Christian standards that you purport to defend.

          You’re embarrassing yourself.

          • Edward M., Trump Supporter is Joe Catholic, A Catholic Perspective, and other aliases. Let me know if you wnt the list

          • –pastor John welcomes all voices to the table. It’s a big table! ‘All beliefs are welcome’. And pastor John reminds us,… ‘the Truth lies somewhere in the middle of dissenting views!’

            (personally, i disagree with that statement, but it’s his blog, so he sets the rules.)

            • I am beginning to think JP has a point … considering each side thinks they know the truth. Not everyone can be wholly true so the truth must be somewhere in between.

    • Good points; sort’a. But, highly doubtful the bad guys are members of NRA. By the way; I am not a member of the NRA.

  19. Too bad that there is not a place on this blog where we can simply indicate how much we are in agreement with what is being said. One of the shames of it all for the much of the Christian right is they do not even have a “Father forgive us for we knew not what we do” to fall back on. The machinations are astounding and extremely said from a group of people who claim to be acting in the name of the Risen Lord of Life. Instead, we find him crucified over and over again in the people we choose to ignore, condemn, and actually hate.

  20. If John Pavlovitz or anyone else has a problem with children dying then speak out against abortion.

    Otherwise, know your role and shut your mouth.

    • Anonymous, we do speak out against abortion, we just choose to do so in more effective ways and keep women out of back alleys while we fight for the things that DO end abortion. If you have a problem with abortion, then join us in demanding comprehensive sex education so teens are not so stupid about sex. Join us in demanding free contraception and sterilization. Join us in creating a true safety net program that makes women feel empowered to choose life. Join us in helping create programs that ensure an equal opportunity for every mother’s child. Otherwise, know you are just anti-abortion not pro-life and shut your mouth!

      • That doesn’t get you off the hook for supporting the unjust deaths of 2,000 babies today. You WANT the abortionists to have the right to do that killing. That’s despicable. Preaching condoms and birth control pills without preaching about the value of unborn life is hypocritical and ineffective.

        Black lives (in the womb) matter.

        They all do.

        Soften your hardened hart towards the inconvenient lives in the womb.

        • Again, Trump Supporter it seems that way to you. However, Trump’s lack of concern for Syrian children is evident in his immigration policy which denies refugees safe haven.

        • Actually Trump Supporter, it does. I do everything in my power, short of force to prevent abortions, you just want to use government force which makes you all liars when you claim to support, “liberty”, “freedom”, rights and privacy. You clearly don’t. I on the other hand have the intelligence and integrity to admit what naturally follows a woman using all of the above. So yes, I freely admit that I WANT a woman to have the liberty and freedom to choose whatever she and her doctor agree is her safe and legal right within the privacy of her womb.

          The only thing that is “despicable” as well as “hypocritical and ineffective” are the people who preach abstinence only and the force of law alone to prevent abortion!

          Soften your hardened heart towards the women desperate enough to choose abortion and create a world where they don’t feel they have to.

          • Sandi, this is well articulated. I think you have made an important point. It does have to do with softening the heart and understanding the impossible situations women are in.

            • Oh, Sally Jane, I wish with all my heart Joe A Catholic Perspective Trump Supporter would allow the Holy Spirit to soften his heart but I fear his heart is as hard as Pharoah’s was.

          • Can I add, who preach that abstinence only should be taught in schools and nothing else. Then they whine when young people do what they have been doing for all the ages, get pregnant. They then vilify them, insist that they have the right to determine that young womens fate, and get mad when it doesn’t go their way. I am sick to death of this business that we want abortions, we don’t, but I have lived in a time when young woman were maimed and died because of back room abortions. Young women who were abused by a family member, impregnated by that self same family member and could not face the future or some guy rapes them. So I would ask Joe C, or Trump Supporter or MAGA or whatever he calls himself today, have you gone out to make sure children are not abused, or that they are educated about sex, or made birth control available, Nope, I doubt it, so just go away and do some good for someone because you are certainly not doing any good here. You have no idea what any of us have done to perhaps help decrease the number of abortions. Legislating it never stopped it, it just hurt more people. I have lived thru both and I know the difference. Peace,

            • Well said Kathleen, good add! They do not have the high ground and deep down (maybe super deep down under all the denial), they know it.

            • Very well expressed, Kathleen B. The real problem with all this anti-abortion talk, is that they refuse to address the elephant in the room and that is what they teach boys about women.

              Since boys aren’t taught to respect women, they don’t grow up to respect women. Women get blamed for everything men don’t like about themselves.

          • I too will try to prevent abortion, short of force and outlawing it, as much as I can. Increased availability and education Birth Control and Plan B can prevent pregnancy so abortions will not be necessary. Better healthcare can prevent pregnancy problems that lead to abortions. Better support for vulnerable pregnant women will reduce the demand for abortions. In spite of abortions being legal the number of abortions per year has dropped almost by half since its peak in 1980. Sometimes abortions cannot be helped due to medical or legal reasons. If we target these problems the need for abortions can be reduced further. I know these solutions are denigrated by conservatives since it requires government money to support pregnant and mother’s with babies, which they will call “welfare”. The only solution I see is to reduce demand and recognize that some abortions cannot be helped, like when the pregnancy will threaten the mother’s life.

            I have nothing else to say on this subject.

          • If there is a heartbeat it is a person. If you kill a person it is murder.

            Also, I happen to financially support local crisis pregnancy centers, pray & fast for abortions to end, an actually evangelize to Planned Parenthood workers. Does that suffice for you or would you prefer I take a role that is more pro big government/humanistic?

            If you’re going to call yourself a Christian then take a biblical approach.

            • According to your logic…self defence is murder and Trump just murdered people.

              You and I live in a world of necessary evils and complex choices where things get justified and weighed on the scales of…judgement and mercy…as Jesus said,

              “Woe to you, teachers of the law and Pharisees, you hypocrites! You give a tenth of your spices, mint, dill and cumin. But you have neglected the more important matters of the law–justice, mercy and faithfulness. You should have practiced the latter, without neglecting the former.”

              None of us are follow the teaching of Jesus perfectly. The only thing we have saving us… is Grace… as we move forward and do our best with what we have and what we know, in compassion and understanding of what the other person is living with.

            • Anonymous, that might work to assuage your guilt but it does nothing to end abortion and shaming the women and clinics doesn’t either.

              By your own logic, you are still a “baby killer” just like we are called. Babies with beating hearts are killed in more ways than just abortion.

              I do take a Biblical approach, I do not judge, I do not throw stones, I forgive and I try to make the world a better place for desperate women. Try it.

    • “Otherwise, know your role and shut your mouth.”

      What?

      No.

      Let me repeat myself. ‘NO’.

      I may barely agree with 10% of what Pastor John posts, but the very fact he posts it and keeps posting is the clearest sign our society has not lost its way. We have dissenters who are not afraid to have their voices heard.

      As angry and frustrated as I get with Pastor Pavlovitz, I would never want his keyboard stilled. If that was to happen … I would somehow feel I had irreparably failed him and everyone else here I have disagreed with.

      • Defense of the First Amendment, I like it, Mr. Dosher.

        Whatever happened to the days when we said “I may not like what you ay, but I will defend to the death your right to say it?”

  21. I hope G-d will forgive me, but I have much less concern with members of the Syrian army than with the innocent men, women, and children in Syria that were attacked with chemical weapons. I am not sorry that we attacked the air field where the chemical attack originated because I believe we should zero tolerance for the use of land mines, chemical, biological, and nuclear weapons. Why those and not bombs and bullets? War, as terrible and immoral as it is, should be temporary state and landmines, chemical, biological, nuclear attacks continue to kill people years and decades later and we need to have zero tolerance for this. The use of these weapons is a more depraved kind of evil. This is why I cry for the innocent attacked today.

  22. Dear all who read this,

    These words need to be said.

    I don’t have the energy to read the comments as I daresay the nasties are already defending the god of their idolatry and diverting the conversation from putting the blame at where it belongs.

    This administration has embraced evil. Trump has embraced evil. If you ***still*** support Trump after these atrocities and war crimes, then you too have embraced evil. Bottom line.

  23. I need to add this. It makes me weep that there are so many voices here who claim to be Christians yet have turned their backs on Jesus to embrace evil. I pray every day that the Holy Spirit will cause you to repent.

    I almost died this week. It was a close thing. At the moment, I see how precious life is. If we don’t do something to stop violence, if we don’t act to stop the killing, if we mealy-mouthed say “oh people will always hurt others, if we for one moment excuse our lack of action with such words, then we have embraced evil.

    More violence will only create more violence. Violence does not achieve peace. People all over this world are dying because of people on the Right of whatever religion, think violence is a good idea.

    It is not. Violence is the worst idea males have ever come up with.

    • Yes, Gloriamarie, violence is the way of the world and it is what God is calling us out of. Rest and be good to yourself.

    • JP, yourself, and others here support abortion. That is murder. Murder is evil. You then support evil.

      I’ll let you know when we can find a ladder big enough so you can climb down from your high horse.

      • Anonymous, I don’t support abortion. I understand it. I understand why abortion is happening. It is not your position that matters here but your posture.

        There is a big difference.

        • That is just it Sally, who “supports” abortion?

          Who wants to see a beautiful gift rejected? Certainly not me, the mother of 2. What kind of people are “pro-abortion”?

          I am pro-choice because being a woman, and a mother and knowing many others, I know the agony, the hardship, the heartache and the desperation that would drive such a choice. I am by no means “pro-abortion”. I am pro-woman, pro-privacy, pro-freedom, pro-personal rights which means I am pro-choice but I work hard to support a world where abortion is rare and medically advised, not this world that feels determined to make it feel necessary to any woman.

          • Exactly, Sandi, It was my first hand experience with those who have made difficult choices…by listening to their stories and knowing where they came from, and where they are now, that helped me to understand this is not a fixed issue much like any issue we face divorce, same sex marriage, transgender rights and so on, compassion is the way forward.

            To be honest I have been a pro-lifer in the past but not attending marches or anything like that. It really is an awful thing… as you said, “Who wants to see a beautiful gift rejected? ”

            As well, I admit, I have learned so much more about the complexities of abortion… from all the women posting on JP’s blog… that I have a better understanding, of the issue, than I did before. So, while this abortion topic does not seem to go away on every single post JP makes, I think the discussion is educating people to be more understanding of what women face and that should be a stick in the craw…. of the single issue voter !

            • Usually those who vote for that EXTREMELY IMPORTANT “single issue” which eclipses so many other issues combined, are also voting for other common sense policies. Justice and common sense usually go together. They are not mutually exclusive.

              It’s nice that you seem to have compassion for the unborn. It would be nice to see that from top to bottom on the pro-choice side as they often come across as hard-hearted, uncaring, and very angry at those who don’t want to see those babies killed. They go so far as to call them “misogynists.”

              It might be a step in the right direction if they would frame it along the lines of “we would very much like every woman to keep their precious baby and not kill it by abortion, but we regret that abortion rights is a necessary evil.”

              But there are some very nasty hard-core abortion rights activists who will not come anywhere near that and will go so far as to call the fetus a “parasite with no rights,” etc. Some of the more cold-hearted among them will say it is not a person at all until it takes its first breath. Imagine that they can think a fully developed baby about to be delivered is still just a blob of stuff.

              • I think it is time we turned the tables in this discussion. Instead of talking about women having abortions, why don’t we talk about the way men waste of potential human life with masturbation, nocturn emissions etc.

                In fact, they are having just this discussion in the alleged great state of TX. I kid you not.

                Texas rep’s bill to fine men for masturbatory emissions has made its way up the legislative ladder

                Texas’s House Bill 4260, which relates “to the regulation of men’s health and safety; creating civil penalty for unregulated masturbatory emissions,” has moved from being filed to being handled by the Texas State Affairs Committee. Written by Houston Democrat state Rep. Jessica Farrar in response to the slew of anti-women’s rights bills regarding medical choice, the bill is in the perfect place for discussion.

                The committee is typically the panel that hears abortion-related legislation and it will now address Farrar’s House Bill 4620, which is named the “Men’s Right to Know Act.”
                The bill was filed about three weeks ago and at the time state Rep. Farrar had this to say:

                “A lot of people find the bill funny,” Farrar said in a phone interview. “What’s not funny are the obstacles that Texas women face every day, that were placed there by legislatures making it very difficult for them to access healthcare.”
                Forcing the men in Texas to discuss laws like these in relationship to their own bodies will be an interesting exercise in cognitive dissonance.

                http://www.dailykos.com/stories/2017/4/6/1650859/-Texas-rep-s-bill-to-fine-men-for-masturbatory-emissions-has-made-its-way-up-the-legislative-ladder?detail=email&link_id=5&can_id=aac248234d067d672dba041bb62601e0&source=email-nikki-haley-is-silenced-at-womens-summitgets-called-on-her-and-trumps-bullsht-by-big-crowd&email_referrer=nikki-haley-is-silenced-at-womens-summitgets-called-on-her-and-trumps-bullsht-by-big-crowd&email_subject=nikki-haley-is-silenced-at-womens-summit-gets-called-on-her-and-trumps-bullsht-by-big-crowd

                • To quote Joe in his hispanic persona: Usually those who vote for that EXTREMELY IMPORTANT “single issue” which eclipses so many other issues combined, are also voting for other common sense policies. Justice and common sense usually go together. They are not mutually exclusive. It’s nice that you seem to have compassion for the unborn. It would be nice to see that […]

                  And yet, Joe, you want the government to act in compassion on the subject of abortion but you don’t want the government to act in compassion when the subject is poverty, homelessness, lack of food or adequate health care.

                  You don’t want the government to act in compassion when the subject is corporate greed and pollution harming life.

                  Your side doesn’t want to act in compassion to the plight of refugees.

                  You don’t want to ensure that pregnant women and their babies have adequate food, shelter and health care.

                  Your argument would be worth a lot more if you got off your single issue definition of “pro life” and expanded it to include the rest. But since you refuse to your “compassion” Joe is nothing but sophistry and hypocrisy.

                  Sorry, you don’t get to argue that you have compassion for the unborn when you’re fine with it dying as long as it isnt via abortion. That’s not compassion you’re acting with if the second that life is born is the second that life is expendable to you. Nor is it compassion you’re acting with if you’re fine with the unborn dying via other means.

                  And curiously despite the fact that IVF clinics destroy unused embryos..your side is no where to be seen in outrage or protest.

                  Is it common sense, Joe, to vote to strip funding for medical research? Is it common sense Joe to vote to strip 26 million people of their health care? Is it common sense to cut food stamps so you can give the top few a tax cut and spend more on a military that we already spend more on than the next 30 countries combined? Is it common sense to cut funding for Meals on Wheels while the President pockets 3 million dollars every weekend from US taxpayers when he goes golfing? Is it common sense to gut the safety net just so you can get down on your knees to the top few? Is it common sense to get rid of the requirements that health insurance cover prenatal, natal and post natal health care?

                  As for justice..don’t kid yourself. You’re not after that either. If you were you wouldn’t be fine with the GOP and Trump taking a hatchet job to the safety net.

                  So really Joe what you are..what so many of you “pro lifers” are is a single issue voter who doesn’t give a rats ass at all about other issues. The world could burn itself to the ground and you don’t care as long as you get to dictate to women regarding their vaginas. That’s not compassion nor is it justice. No matter how much you delude yourself to the contrary.

                  to quote Sister Joan Chittister: “I do not believe that just because you’re opposed to abortion, that that makes you pro-life. In fact, I think in many cases, your morality is deeply lacking if all you want is a child born but not a child fed, not a child educated, not a child housed. And why would I think that you don’t? Because you don’t want any tax money to go there. That’s not pro-life. That’s pro-birth. We need a much broader conversation on what the morality of pro-life is.”

              • From Pope Francis:

                “I henceforth grant to all priests, in virtue of their ministry, the faculty to absolve those who have committed the sin of procured abortion,” he wrote. “I wish to restate as firmly as I can that abortion is a grave sin, since it puts an end to an innocent life. In the same way, however, I can and must state that there is no sin that God’s mercy cannot reach and wipe away when it finds a repentant heart seeking to be reconciled with the Father.”

          • I lied. I have something more to say on this topic. I understand why some women get abortions. My grandmother had an ectopic pregnancy and needed a surgical abortion to save her life. One of my ex-girlfriends had a pregnancy that was having problems and the baby would eventually be stillborn and she couldn’t wait for that to happen because the severe cramps and pain was preventing her from working or doing anything. An abortion was the only way to get her pain free and back to work ASAP. There are other cases that necessitates an abortion, each unique and sometimes unnecessary if the woman could get sufficient support.

          • Pro-choice is pro abortion. your “pros” can be summed up like this- you are “pro liberalism” and don’t care that innocent life is being it’s arms and legs ripped off all in the name of what? Liberty? Your rights? Your moral position is incredible low, pathetic, and unbiblical.

            • Meanwhile you don’t give a rats ass if that baby or the rest of us die from lack of food, shelter or health care.

              And you certainly don’t want corporations stopped from harming or killing us in the name of their greed.

              And if a refugee child dies trying to flee you don’t care.

              And that in vitro clinics destroy thousands of embryos is fine with you as well.

              So no, child, you don’t get to lecture about morality..especially biblical morality.

              • Who is fine with ebryos being destroyed? That’s a horrible injustice, besides the fact that they should never have been conceived in that manner in the first place.

                • Oh, like it is news to you that fertility clinics have embryos, fertilize embryos, implant embryos, freeze embryos and discard embryos? Or you just don’t want to admit there are no protesters taunting and harassing them because they do it for rich people.

            • Anonymous, I don’t think we read the same Bible and all the insults you fling will not make it so. Was God “incredible low, pathetic, and unbiblical” when he ordered every man, woman, child, ox and lamb killed?

              How Biblical is it to value the life of the woman over the fetus? “If men strive, and hurt a woman with child, so that her fruit depart from her, and yet no mischief follow: he shall be surely punished according as the woman’s husband will lay upon him; and he shall pay as the judges determine.”

              “And if any mischief follow, then thou shalt give life for life, Eye for eye, tooth for tooth . . .”–Ex. 21:22-25

              Try these:
              Numbers 31:17 Now therefore kill every male among the little ones.
              Deuteronomy 2:34 utterly destroyed the men and the women and the little ones.
              Deuteronomy 28:53 And thou shalt eat the fruit of thine own body, the flesh of thy sons and of thy daughters.
              I Samuel 15:3 slay both man and woman, infant and suckling.
              2 Kings 8:12 dash their children, and rip up their women with child.
              2 Kings 15:16 all the women therein that were with child he ripped up.
              Isaiah 13:16 Their children also shall be dashed to pieces before their eyes; their houses shall be spoiled and their wives ravished.
              Isaiah 13:18 They shall have no pity on the fruit of the womb; their eyes shall not spare children.
              Lamentations 2:20 Shall the women eat their fruit, and children.
              Ezekiel 9:6 Slay utterly old and young, both maids and little children.
              Hosea 9:14 give them a miscarrying womb and dry breasts.
              Hosea 13:16 their infants shall be dashed in pieces, and their women with child shall be ripped up.

      • I do not support abortion. If women were given the respect and help and equal rights they deserve, there would be fewer abortions.
        When will men take the responsibility when they get a woman pregnant? I’ve never once heard a so called prolifer talk about that. All they do is shame the women.
        So I will not judge a woman who decides to get an abortion because I have not walked in her shoes. But I do support a womans right to have a safe abortion in a qualified clinic or hospital.

  24. Make no mistake. I “despise” this man called Trump. Yet I want to believe in that turning point because the alternative leaves me hopeless. This IS what hatred does and perhaps that realization more than any other will remain forever etched in what is left of my mind. And the grotesque images of dead and dying children. It’s a message not just for Trump, but for all of us, John. When will be learn that…yes, this is what hatred does.

    As always, thanks for sharing your head and heart…

    • Mary, one place to create the turning point

      One way to persist in resistance is my FB group, Gloriamarie’s Progressive Stuff, where I post actions, petitions, info, actual news, evidence, facts. There’s a pinned post that I highly recommend people read. I also ask a screening question so I can keep the spammers and the trolls out. All who read this are invited.

      https://www.facebook.com/groups/gloriamariesprogressivepetitions/

  25. I am reminded of the fake Bible quote on the wall of the warden of Shawshank Prison:

    “His judgment cometh……and that right soon.”

    Donald Trump finally lucked up and did something right last night with those 59 Tomahawk cruise missiles. Taking out Baby Assad and his family would have been better. Based on what is happening right now on the UN Security Council, I would support jerking every dime of nonhumanitarian United States contributions to support of the United Nations.

        • It’s his game… not mine…I don’t trust Trump or Bannon but I suspect the interest in Syria is more than a reaction to the chemical attack by Assad. I have a pretty good memory and saved this quote by Bannon,

          “Republicans will govern for “50 years” if President-elect Trump fulfills his campaign promises and ushers in an economic boom, the incoming president’s senior [said] “If we deliver, we’ll get 60 percent of the white vote, and 40 percent of the black and Hispanic vote and we’ll govern for 50 years,” Bannon said, noting that the globalism championed by defeated Democratic presidential hopeful Hillary Clinton and her allies has “gutted the American working class and created a middle class in Asia.”

          • Oh, well yes, I suppose that makes some warped sense, more war might mean either a boon to the economy or a severe distraction away from their other agenda.

            “Pray without ceasing” has new meaning for many on this earth.

              • How about that he is trying to do what is best for the US and for and the world?

                He did get some Democratic support for his actions.

                  • I have been…”deported” because my kind (practicing Catholics, apparently) is not welcome here. Or maybe it’s because I have brown eyes and black hair. At any rate, I have to disguise myself and sneak past the guards and crawl through my secret tunnel under the wall to post here. Sadly, you’ll be seeing less of me. It’s risky to post too often, as my tunnel might be discovered and blocked.

                    Don’t turn me in, ok? Perhaps there is an area here where I might find “sanctuary”? Who will hide me in their basement? I don’t mind. I live in my mother’s basement most of the time.

                    • Joe, I don’t k now why you bother with the aliases. I’ve deleted over 150 comments today without reading them and in the few that i have read, you’ve used at least 4 pseudonyms and you have been caught in each of them. we will always recognize your particular style.

                      The only person you might be fooling is yourself.

                    • How could you figure out so quickly that “José el Catolico” is really “Joe the Catholic.”

                      I not nearly as clever as I think I am. I din’t think ANYONE would be able to figure that out.

                      (Is there an eye roll option here?)

                      For once, however, you will be right. You were not correct about all those other aliases, but I have been forced to assume a new identity. Someday, in better times, perhaps many years from now, I hope that I can once again openly post as “Joe Catholic,” but until then I must wear a disguise.

                      Joe Catholic is nothing now. Another story must begin.

                    • Joe, I hate to break it to you, but you are not that important. I feel for you because this appears to be like something my kids would have done when they were young, not as grownups. I suspect your humor is lost on most of us, and in the general scheme of things not that important. By the way, you aren’t going to shut down JP or drive us away. I am praying for you, I do think you need it.

                    • *pats joe on the head* I’m a practicing Catholic, child, and I have not been removed from the board. So there goes that false victim claim of yours

                      And with the way you switch identies and your constant Victim act there is no reason to believe that you are somehow being targeted.

                      So why don’t you knock off the game you are playing.

                    • You’re a practicing Catholic James? How was anyone to know that?

                      It surprises me because you have been very hostile towards me, a fellow Catholic and are quite vulgar at times, though neither one necessarily precludes you being a Catholic.

                      I suppose I should have qualified that somewhat because I don’t think he would have a problem with Catholics who don’t speak up or with Catholics who are “cafeteria catholics.”

                      I would be interested in your definition of a “practicing Catholic.”

                    • CJ, child, you probably shouldn’t be using terms like “Cafeteria Catholics” or “Catholics who don’t speak up” since on so many issues, child, that term applies to you. Now do I agree with the Catholic church on everything? I’ll be honest..no. I think their position on contraception is silly considering their opposition to abortion. Contraception lowers the number of abortions so in why God’s name if the goal is less abortions would one oppose contraception?

                      I also disagree with the Catholic church on the subject of married and female priests. And do pay attention to this one and specifically how I’m phrasing it. I disagree with the Catholic church’s postion on same sex marriage AS IT APPLIES to civil marriage. Now that the Catholic church doesn’t want to marry a same sex couple is fine..that’s the church’s choice and I would not support any attempt to force it otherwise. But I don’t think the Catholic church, as it tried to do in my state, has the right to dictate that it’s position be the position of the civil government.

                      Here is the basic difference between me and you. You think you have some right to force everyone in the country to obey your religious beliefs..I don’t. This isn’t a theocracy, no one’s religious beliefs rule.

                      You think being Catholic merely means opposing abortion. I don’t. You think being “pro life” means merely opposing abortion…that is far too limited. You want to make abortions illegal and you don’t care that means that the unborn and their mothers will be dying via back alley abortions. Its not like you can with any honesty say that if roe vs wade is overturned that abortion will go away..it won’t. That fight will continue because like it or not abortion has been around for a very very long time. Like I told you before..it’s mentioned in Numbers 5 and not in a context where it’s condemned.

                      I have been hostile to you because to be blunt you are a whiny little child who every time you’re challenged you act like you’re some kind of victim. You suffer from some sort of conservative eternal victim complex. That if you’re challenged it’s because we’re being mean to you. And your constantly switching names, in which you’ve had conversations with yourself, doesn’t help you.

                      And you seem to be suffering the delusion that all Catholics/Christians must be on your side of the political fence. No.

                      And you think the world and the Catholic church revolves solely around one subject…. abortion. And that if you just hammer people over the head enough on that subject that they’ll magically start opposing abortion just like you. Its all you ever talk about.

                      The problem, besides the obvious, as I have told you before is that you don’t give a damn about life otherwise. As long as that life doesn’t die via abortion you’re fine with that life dying or being harmed in other ways.

                      If a child gets poisoned by a pesticide and his/her brain doesn’t develop properly you don’t care. Because I sure haven’t seen you opposing Trump’s EPA deciding that pesticide should be allowed. Trump also wants to cut the governments opposition to lead paint and lead bullets. (no, the bullets part isn’t something to do with the 2nd amendment. its to do with lead vs nonlead bullets.)

                      And you sure as hell weren’t outraged over Trump and the GOP deciding that 26 million people should lose their health care.

                      nor was their any outrage from you when your party’s so called “Freedom Caucus” demanded that for their support for “Trumpcare” that insurance companies shouldn’t have to pay for and over prenatal, natal and neonatal health care and the rest of the GOP gave it to them.

                      My mother before she had me had, I think, 5 still births for reasons surrounding a genetic anomaly in my dad’s side of the family and, unfortunately, her smoking. According to your party she should have been investigated for 5 murders. What purpose that would have served in “protecting life” I have no earthly idea.

                      Just as I have no earthly idea what ordering doctors to lie to their patients has in protecting life. ANd just this last month a member of your party said that if a woman is carrying a dead fetus she should be required to do so even though that dead baby is literally poisoning the mother.

                      And curiously you pro lifers don’t give a damn that every single IVF clinic creates thousands of embryos and the ones that aren’t used are destroyed or used in medical research.

                      I could continue the list but I’ve done so before so you get the idea. Now this is where your “cafeteria catholic” comes in. You don’t care about those things, you don’t care that your party’s policies harm life. You don’t care that your party doesn’t give a royal damn about that unborn life after it’s born. You don’t care that your party gleefully engages in the death penalty and has no problem in launching unjust wars. *Points at George W Bush’s Iraq war.*

                      The problem for you is that the Catholic church does care about those things. The Catholic church’s teachings on those things are as clear as its opposition to abortion just as its teachings on the role of government with regards to the economy and the poor and the needs of the people are clear.

                      And yet you don’t care. All you care about is abortion and you have no interest in even acknowledging the Catholic church’s teachings on those other things. So like I said, Joe, you are also a cafeteria Catholic. Oh you can pretend different all you want, Joe, but you still are.

                    • James, what an enlightening comment. Thank you for that, even if Joe won’t hear it, there are any number of people who did and we Thank you. Peace,

                    • Well done James! Useless for Joe of the many names, but still well worth saying and putting out there for the still rational Christians.

                    • I havent defended abortion, child. I have pointed out your short sightedness in thinking that if you overturn roe vs that will be accomplishing something. I have pointed out your hypocrisy in wanting government to save life from abortion but not g government to save life in the examples I gave. I pointed out that if that baby,unborn or born, dies from lack of food, clean water, adequate shelter or health care you don’t give a damn.

                      I think the better way to deal with abortion is to lessen the perceived “need” for it. I believe that banning it will only have the same result that banning liquor did at the start of the last century. And I believe that a party that opposes abortion is being purely hypocritical when it opposes government acting to protect life otherwise.

                      And yes you have a victim complex a mile wide. Every time you’re opposed you whine about it, you accuse others of trying to stifle you.

                      And for”sharing”your hammering people over the head with your faith is not sharing, you’re using it as a weapon irregardless of whether or not those others are interested. I generally share my faith with those who ask and who are interested. Otherwise I respect their freedom of their own religious beliefs or lack thereof. I have discoverd over 42 years that being an jerkass in God’s name is not a virtue.

                      It is not the job of the government nor is it not the job of the supreme court to impose the Bible,or any other religious text,into the laws of the united states. This is not a theocracy, boy, and the US Constitution,not any religious text, is the supreme law of the land.

                      Oh and BTW since my mom’s side of the family is Lutheran, including a Lutheran pastor, you probably should consider whether or not insulting them is a good idea.

                      You say you believe that the CC is the final arbiter of the Bible. Then why do you disobey it when it comes to the role of government on the subjects of poverty, homelessness, lack of health care, environment and the economy? I seem to recall linking you catholic social teachings a while back.

  26. Dear John Pavlovitz and Reader:

    The claim that this attack responds to the Syrian government’s use of poison gas is a transparent lie. As in the 1999 air war against Serbia, the 2001 invasion of Afghanistan, the 2003 invasion of Iraq, and the 2011 attack on Libya, the United States invented yet another pretext to justify the violation of another country’s sovereignty.

    This attack abrogates the 2013 agreement negotiated with Russia. The result was that a long-planned direct military intervention by the US in the on-going civil war maintained by US backed surrogates.

    You were warned…

    in September 2013, when the International Committee of the Fourth International [ http://tinyurl.com/kkwh994 ] said:

    ‘…the postponement of war does not lessen the likelihood, indeed, the inevitability, of the outbreak of a major war. As the bellicose statements emanating from Washington make clear, the “military option” remains on the table. Nor is Syria the only target for military attack. US operations against Syria would set the stage for a clash with Iran. And, still further, the logic of US imperialism’s drive for global dominance leads to a confrontation with Russia and China. Nor can it be excluded that the conflict of interests among the major imperialist powers—for example, the United States and Germany—might under certain conditions metastasize into armed conflict.’

    This attack substantiated the ICFI warning.

    It has not been substantiated…

    that the Syrian government is responsible for a poison gas attack. The incident occurred in northwestern Idlib province, an area largely controlled by the Syrian affiliate of Al Qaeda. It is more likely that the Syrian Air Force bombed a rebel manufactory where the chemical agent was being produced.

    How does Assad benefit from this crime?

    With Russian and Iranian aid, Syria largely destroyed the Islamist ‘rebels’ who, kindly note, are armed/financed/trained by the CIA and Washington’s regional allies in a bloody war for regime change. To the extreme embarrassment and utter outrage of the Obama/Clinton aligned elite, Assad’s regime rules 80% of the country and all major cities, forcing US proxy ‘rebel’ fighters into largely rural areas of Idlib province. With Trump signaling a shift from toppling Assad to fighting the Islamic State of Iraq/Syria, why would Damascus conduct such a provocative attack?

    Who actually benefits from this crime?

    The CIA-backed rebels themselves – plus their patrons in the US military and intelligence apparatus! Defeated militarily, the CIA-backed rebels have every reason to retain chemical weapons to thwart government consolidation of rule throughout Syria. Further, numerous investigations [including the UN chemical disarmament agency] show that Al Nusra Front [Syrian Al Qaeda affiliate] ‘rebels’ have used both chlorine and sarin gas attacks, with agents they received from regional backers in Saudi Arabia, Qatar and Turkey, and which they themselves are known to be able to manufacture.

    The issue of timing…

    1] Tuesday morning’s alleged ‘attack’ happened as an EU sponsored ‘Conference on Supporting the Future of Syria and the Region’ was opening. The intent was to review proposals for Syria’s ‘political transition’ and for Europe’s role in the potentially lucrative ‘reconstruction’ of the ravaged country. With the defeat of US surrogate proxy fighters, an alleged chemical ‘attack’ sets the stage for another ‘regime change’ campaign, and for another attack Trump’s administration for suggesting Assad’s ouster is not a priority.

    2] The last time Washington and allies accused Assad’s regime of a major chemical attack in August 2013, later revelations showed that this was in fact a rebel provocation executed with the help of Turkish intelligence and was launched on the very day that UN weapons inspectors arrived in Damascus.

    3] Literally within minutes, before the basic facts of the incident were even known – much less any serious investigation was conducted – the entire media establishment was braying denunciations of President al-Assad as the culprit, and launching a full-throated campaign for military action. It was as if before the event itself was reported, major newspaper editors and columnists, television news commentators and talking heads all lined up behind the same points. None of them bothered to inform readers/viewers that the sole sources of information that they trusted was provided with Al Qaeda-connected ‘activists’ in Syria, backed with US intelligence and military officials pushing for war. This has all the earmarks of a planned propaganda campaign.

    Limitless hypocrisy…

    This outpouring of moral outrage came the day after the White House received and gave the red carpet treatment to the butcher of Cairo, General Abdel Fattah el-Sisi, who slaughtered 1,000 unarmed demonstrators on a single day. And where was the moral ‘outrage’ over last month’s death of 200 Iraqi civilians killed in a single bombing raid on Mosul? Or the hundreds if not thousands more buried alive by US bombs and missiles dropped on schools, mosques and homes in Syria itself? And that doesn’t mention Yemen.

    For the future…

    It matters that the Times editorial holds Russia and Iran equally culpable as enablers of the unproven charges against Assad. That thinly veiled threat recalls the International Committee of the Fourth International 2013 warning, ‘Nor is Syria the only target for military attack.’ And the ICFI also named Iran and Russia. And it named China.

    An administration entering crisis…

    These efforts are whipping Donald Trump into line with those sections of the Obama/Clinton and some Republicans who represent the predominant tendency in the US military and intelligence apparatus in its push for buildup to military confrontation with Iran and Russia. Remember Clinton’s ‘tough talk on Russia’ campaign? The demotion of Trump’s fascistic chief strategist, Steve Bannon, from the principals committee of the Natural Security Council expresses concretely the [primarily] Democratic Party drive to war with Russia. And despite what he said only days ago, Trump – like his predecessors – appears to be coming into line. Faced with intractable social and political crises at home, he has no choice but to turn to war abroad.

    The way out…

    CIA provocations in Syria backed by mass media propaganda campaign is a deadly serious warning to the working class that not only the threat of renewed bloodshed in the ME but a far more dangerous confrontation by two, major nuclear powers can be averted ONLY as the whole working class intervenes directly into political process to stop it by ending the rule of mass murderers in the current buildup to long-planned war on Syria/Iran/Russia.

    Blessings!

        • RT is Russia Today, Sandi. They claim to be independent, but there are ties that seem to indicate they are supported by the Russian government. An overt bias became obvious to me when Russia invaded Crimea. It is becoming clearer that Russian propaganda targeted both political extremes, with the targets being to support Trump and to vilify Clinton (many “Bernie Bros” on Twitter were actually Russian bots). The political extremes agreeing is as likely to be the result of propaganda as it is a real consensus of opinion. I would tread carefully.

          • Thank you for the info ami! I am very convinced that Russian propaganda, fake news and oligarch money have much more reach and influence in America than anyone knows.

            And certainly the Sanders supporters were helping to spread it as widely as the Trump supporters were. I would not go near either site, there is “eclectic research” and there is seeking confirmation of bias. I have plenty of bias already.

          • Dear ami:

            Personally, I think that objectivity is far more difficult than we realize. Everyone tends to think that they’re ‘objective.’ What RT or al-Jazeera or other news sources provide is a differing perspective. By reading multiple perspectives, we MIGHT get a truer picture of what exists ‘objectively.’

            Rather than pretend to be ‘objective,’ I think it’s better to admit our biases. Hence — I am a Christian, socialist, Marxist with a strong Trotskyist streak.

            Blessings!

            • Dear gdd–

              All news media has bias, even when they claim otherwise, since it’s produced by humans and we all have biases that we can’t fully eliminate. Our defenses against bias are critical thinking skills and trying to understand the agenda the news source is supporting as well using a variety of sources to gain a fuller picture. Anytime a news source is directly supported by the state however, there is going to spin at least and some content that is nothing but propaganda mixed in with more honest news coverage. Hence my advice to tread carefully, especially in light of the current Trump/Russian situation in regards to RT specifically.

              My own bias? I’m a human being trying to seek understanding regarding the spiritual aspect of human nature and the nature of the Divine Mystery who leans decidedly left by current standards but have not found a political philosophy/party I can fully embrace. Also, I detest labels, so perhaps the most fitting one is Contrarian. Hell, half of the time I argue with myself. 😉
              Blessings to you also and to any who may read these words, regardless if you agree with them or not.

              • Ami, I am right there with you and I think “contrarian” is my most accurate “label” too.

                One of the problems I see is that bias in and of itself is not bad. I am biased against rattlesnakes, don’t trust ’em, don’t see their purpose, don’t want to see them. But that bias is based in the fact that they can kill me. Bias, in an of itself is not always dishonest or wrong. Dishonesty, distortions, exaggerations, these are wrong. I think way too much is made of just bias.

                I have read many biased news accounts that contained facts and were true and right. So I think there always has to be an element of “contrarian” in us to question, examine and research, not just blindly accept what we are told and far too many people, whether it is politics or Christianity just want the ‘cliff notes’ version or the bias confirmation version and refuse to do the work.

                Why read the Bible when the church tells you all you need to know? Why compare what a politician tells you to reality or the teachings of Jesus? It appears to be just too much work for some folks to be informed.