Where Have So Many White Christians Gone?

You’d have thought November 9th, 2016 actually was the date of the Rapture.

In the twinkling of an eye, millions of Christians (most of them white) seemingly disappeared that day or they began hiding really, really well—like, Federal Witness Protection Program, well.

I immediately noticed it in my social media timelines. Friends I’d spent a hundred Sundays with in churches where I’d served or met along the way, began vanishing one by one. These were people I’d come to see as family (or actually were family), people I’d believed loved God and their neighbors as themselves, people who made me proud to be called a Christian. 

The more I spoke, the more quiet they became. The louder I got, the more they withdrew.

As I pushed back against Muslim bans and racist Cabinet appointments and reckless environmental policies and blatant corruption and ghoulish healthcare proposals—many simply silently disconnected, unceremoniously unfriending or blocking me. Others would also sever ties, but not without first letting me know how disappointed they were in me, how much I’ve changed—and above all how much they were praying for me.

We’d elected an incompetent, immoral monster to lead our nation, one who’s trampled on nearly every marginalized community and every sacred inch of our Constitution and bastardized our shared faith tradition—but I was the problem they were having. My volume was an issue. That was unnerving to them. That was a moral quandary. Chastising me was the one bit of activism they could muster up.

But perhaps more confounding than those white Christian friends who disappeared into the ether or left flipping me the bird, are the ones who have said and done nothing; those who stayed and simply chose to pretend everything is fine, those whose advantages allowed them to retreat back into their normal lives, seemingly unaffected by anything happening in our country. 

Rather than debate current events or wrestle with tension they’ve created in our country, these folks resumed doing just what they’d done before: posting cute pictures of their kids, sharing Scripture quotes, and posting recipes for blueberry cobbler. In other words: they stepped safely back into the gated spiritual community of their oblivious privilege—and they don’t seem particularly interested in coming back out no matter how much it hits the fan outside. 

I don’t blame them. I’ve been there. It’s pretty cozy there:
There, following Jesus doesn’t require any significant change.
There, you can pass the buck to God for people’s healthcare.

There, people of color are doing just fine, as long as a few attend your church.
There, Transgender teens and Muslim women and young black men aren’t really suffering.
There, it’s Kumbaya and All Lives Matter and America First and Jesus saves.
There, you can receive absolution with an hour on Sunday for apathy the rest of the week.

Since November, some of the boldest and loudest people of faith I’ve ever known have come down with laryngitis and feet of clay. They’ve grown silent. They’ve become invisible. Sure, they’ll still talk about Jesus in general terms, but not about how this Jesus would respond to travel bans and police shootings and Medicaid cuts and military budgets. That kind of mess is too inconvenient to step into, too political, too divisive.

For a while I held out hope that something would come and rile them from their silence—but that’s nearly exhausted. I’m not sure there’s anything that could move them anymore. Once those compassion muscles fully atrophy it’s really difficult to get them going again.
I’m through holding my breath waiting for them to come back and actually give half a damn about those who are at the end of their collective ropes right now. I’ll give the damns that they don’t and partner with other damn-givers, whether they’re Christian or not. (Many of them are, which is encouraging.)
I’ve stopped asking them to tell me what they care about, because the list seems pretty short. It doesn’t seem to extend far beyond their house or their church—and definitely not beyond our borders.
Most of all I’ve stopped trying to connect the dots between the Jesus of the Bible who they claim to love and serve—and their disinterest with the poor and the sick and the people on the margins—because it’s a futile exercise. They don’t connect.

I’ll see many of these invisible white Christians soon enough, though. I live in the Bible Belt, and Sunday’s coming. They will emerge from their 6-day slumber and they’ll fill the church buildings dotting every block of our town. They’ll do social media church check-ins and talk about “gettin’ their worship on”. There, they’ll hear their pastors speak about love and salvation, without once mentioning Philando Castile or Nabra Hassanen. They’ll sing and pray for an hour, some of them genuinely momentarily moved. Then they’ll head to their favorite restaurant down the street, never once wondering how anyone back in the kitchen is holding up right now with talk of building walls and ICE raids and canceling health insurance. 

As long as I live, I don’t think I’ll ever understand how so many white people of Jesus suddenly disappeared, just when the world he cared about most needed them to be visible.

I wonder if they realize that to so many who are deeply wounded and terribly frightened right now—Jesus has disappeared along with them.

 

 

253 thoughts on “Where Have So Many White Christians Gone?

    • I was Christian-a rapture believing, unscientific, Apocalypse fearing christian …. I am now a Baha’i Faith member. A world citizen. Could not be a christian today..

      • lin deahl, had I been “-a rapture believing, unscientific, Apocalypse fearing christian” I would probably today be Baha’i too.

        For the record, I have always believed in science, do not believe the Bible to be a book of science, have never believed in the Rapture, and have been convinced that the events referred to as the Apocalypse happened already back in the day because it is talking about Rome.

  1. Raised Catholic (which doesn’t count with the folks you are talking about) and now Buddhist — though I go to church with my mom sometimes — I’ve not disappeared. And yes, for you its a Christian thang, but for me it is a citizen thing. I am deeply ashamed of our country and doing all I can to change it back to some semblance of a place I could hold me head up in. You are the ONLY christian writer I share on my own FB page.

    • Kate. respectfully, I wonder why Buddhism has more rules for Women (#600) than they do for Men (#300), and I wonder why Women cannot enter Nirvana, unless they reincarnate as male? (I already know how they ‘get around’ it, they say ‘just because you have a woman’s body, does not mean you are a woman.)

      • #1 Patriarchy is in all major religions – no one particular one has a corner on it.
        #2 The rules you speak of are largely for monks and nuns, not lay people.
        #3 Just like there are progressive Christians who believe that the historical patriarchy of Christianity is outdated, there are progressive Buddhists who feel the same.

      • I’ve read Buddhist texts where women have attained full enlightenment instantaneously – a state which would normally take multiple auspicious lifetimes for men. So it’s not necessarily a simple Patriarchal play (although there is plenty of that).

        • I can highly recommend The Novice: A Story of True Love by Thich Nhat Hanh in which a woman not only becomes enlighted but also a Boddishava.

          I don’t know what kind of Buddhism leslie m is familiar with, but what I’ve read is beautifully egalitarian, just like the writings of St. Paul.

  2. I agree with your assessment, and the weekly “feel good” meetings have nothing to do with any calling to truly walk with Christ—and what I believe it means. Though I would rather not be angry, thank you for soldiering on for those of us who don’t feel a part of these “churches”, while we work within the simple fellowship of true believers. Thank God and thank you for you.

  3. Once again, you are speaking my heart. I’m sickened by the lack of compassion and empathy shown by todays “Christian” My husband and I will no longer allow anyone to call us Christian because we don’t want linked in with the non caring group. We keep our lives in tune with what we believe is best for our family and community and nation. We just love. When it comes down to it, that is all there is. No one fails if they do that.

  4. Thank you, John. Your voice has been a drink in the dry hot desert for me. I honestly don’t know what I’d do without your periodic reminders that not all Christians are like my friends and family who call themselves by that name.

  5. All this once again reminds us that words do not change the unchangeable heart. Only the inner stirring of Spirit in a ready heart does the needle begin to move toward softening toward fellow planet travelers not like them or their past ideals.
    It is all part of the human condition of hundreds of thousands of years learning self preservation and not likely to change until the “christian/religious communities” revise their slick ways of money, power and control keeping the ‘sheep’ right where they want them. Leading them to slaughter in the name of twisted magic evolutions of the ‘gospel’ of bastardized teachings of the man Jesus.

  6. First they came for the Socialists, and I did not speak out—
    Because I was not a Socialist.

    Then they came for the Trade Unionists, and I did not speak out—
    Because I was not a Trade Unionist.

    Then they came for the Jews, and I did not speak out—
    Because I was not a Jew.

    Then they came for me—and there was no one left to speak for me.

    – Martin Niemöller

    • Thank you, Robin. That is my touchstone, I have it on my bulletin board, have had it for many years. I always seem to come back to that. Peace and Love,

  7. Once again, you have nailed far too many onto the cross of indifference to other’s suffering and that is about as far from Christ as a human can get, much less a professed Christian.

    Every vote I ever cast I was ready to defend with how that enabled my faith and informed my understanding of the teachings in the Gospel. That was true of Jimmy Carter, that was true of Barack Obama, and that was true of Hillary Clinton. In all of whom I found decency, humility and service to others as a sign.

    How anyone who voted for Trump can square him with the teachings of Jesus is really beyond my ken. But to not even try? Not to even admit that this cruelty, ignorance, and damaging arrogance is what you voted “for?” Or that you did not vote “for that,” that is some kind of delusion.

    Sure, no one has to accept my disdain, my castigation or my questioning of how they think they live their faith if they voted for Trump. I am nothing, I am easily pushed aside as not worth bothering about. But how will you escape God’s?

  8. For me, life is not normal nor is it business as usual. I worry constantly that America— the most powerful nation in the world under the current administration— is the Monster.

    Many of my relationships are broken or strained because of this Trump thing. My circle of friends has become smaller and more tight knit so that I can protect myself from the “whack jobs” emerging on the social media scene and so I can keep myself form being turned to stone by the cold hearts that are indifferent to someone’s suffering.

    I am grateful for those who have a loud voice and who advocate relentlessly for those in need on the public stage— because we are all called to use our gifts to benefit the people around us.

    I pray that those who are strong and affluent will use their wealth to help those who have less than them. I pray fro the strong that they will help the weak. I pray for the artists that they will inspire the discouraged.

    I may not have a loud voice or very much to give and I may be one of those mowed over in a debate or a fight— so I will leave the fighting and the debating up to the loud mouths and the foot soldiers.

    As for me I know who I am and I will jump in with everything I have to help those in need and defend those who need defending. I will never tire of trying to do my upmost to honour Jesus and make the world around me a better place.

  9. John! Of all the fake christians I’ve known over the years- you’re the single christian that doesn’t need their prayers!

    I am a working fiber artist. That means that there is a large group of (mostly) women out there- working with the same materials and tools I use- making “quilts” while I make ART. I always knew it- growing up in the land of mormon handicrafts- but most of these women are also christian. They can’t/won’t deal with anything controversial. They don’t want anybody to mess with their hobbycraft mentality. They absolutely refuse to engage in anything that messes with their assumption that they are right. AND THEY ALL MAKE ME WANT TO PUKE.

    Some of them recently formed a conservative quilters group- and then they began to bash- and actually attempt to outright harm the people they don’t like. And they got taken to the cleaners- because there are a few others like me out there. Sad.

    You can find that story here:
    http://www.bbc.com/news/blogs-trending-40278684?SThisFB
    It made it all the way to the BBC.

    • WOW! Thank you J. Bruce, I literally had no idea. Though why I am shocked, shocks me, if you know what I mean. The division is deep, and so is the denial that it is a problem.

    • Thanks for sharing Bruce, this is the kind of story that gives me hope for the future! As we confront conflict openly and expose the bigotry, people hide inside their hearts, we can shed light on the problem areas (where people let bias motivate them to hurt and exclude others) this will eventually resolve our divisions and transform hearts. It is the hard work move peace and reconciliation. Keep fighting the good fight !

  10. Please keep speaking out, John Pavlovitz! We need your voice to speak out for all of us out here who feel the same way. Do not let the apathy of some discourage you…..

  11. Dear John Pavlovitz:

    Years ago, I knew a Christian pastor who, while never partisan, addressed issues relating to both parties. He too refused to vote [hey–I had to learn it from somewhere, right?].

    Let me tell you–that guy led a lonely church existence.

    We are saddled with a buffoon. One month he’s ready to make war on Syria and Russia, then he’s ready to make war on North Korea and China. Then it’s Syria and Iran. Now it’s North Korea, China, Syria, Iran and Russia. So no — he doesn’t have a stable psyche.

    But point out additionally that Hillary Clinton is the epitome of corrupt, Washington insiderism and the Pentagon ‘anti-Russian’ favorite and like my old friend — you may find out what ‘lonely’ means.

    Blessings!

    • gdd, he is not going to do that because 1) it is not true and 2) there is no need to speak in the abstract about what could have happened, when we are staring into the abyss of what IS happening.

      You bash imaginary Democrats not in power enough for us all. We are not a Socialist nation and we are not moving in that direction just because neither party is perfect, because guess what? Neither is the fantasy you are selling!

      • gdd, here is what I think.

        We have to deal with what is happening right now.

        We now know just how disastrous is the GOP Senate’s version of the health care bill. I would hope any number of Trump supporters are gobsmacked by what they have let themselves and those they love in for.

        As for dealing with what is happening right now today, we have to speak up, demonstrate peacefully, march peacefully, protest peacefully, do everything within our abilities to resist the evils that the present administration has bought into.

        As readers here know, I am disabled and handicapped, so I have created the FB group below.

        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/

        • Gloriamarie, I don’t think the Trump adherents will ever be gobsmacked by the health care debacle because they have it in their heads that their “brand loyalty” to the GOP will somehow earn them special favors, and that THEIR health care won’t be taken away. That’s only going to happen to those of us who, in their opinion, chose poorly in the election. My, won’t they be surprised…..

          • Susan, my friend, you said, ” they have it in their heads that their “brand loyalty” to the GOP will somehow earn them special favors, and that THEIR health care won’t be taken away. ”

            While it is certainly true that I don’t credit the average GOP voter with a high level of intellectual acumen, but if you are correct and they think that through some act of magic, they will retain the health benefits of the ACA should the GOP prevail and that diabolical AHCA is passed, then all I can say is that GOP voters live in Cloud Cuckoo Land.

        • Dear Gloriamarie Amalfitano:

          It’s heartrending to hear of the distress you and so many others face. How I wish a truly progressive option and the political will to fight for it existed! But staged political stunts as last Monday’s ‘Walk-a-thon’ or stalling in chamber proceedings are allowed not because they are peaceable but ONLY because they are non-disruptive and hence utterly ineffectual. With the stakes so high, it is imperative to proceed from solid analysis and to recall history’s lessons.

          To the wealthiest 10% who tower over and rule the lower orders through the two-party system, it is an intolerable outrage that money be diverted from profits and private bank accounts to keep working people alive and fairly healthy.

          As social inequality skyrockets, life expectancy drops and mortality rates climb for the US working class. The ruling class means to accelerate these tendencies. Republican plans target lower income adults below 65 for the deepest attacks. Insurers can charge them 5x more than younger people. Unable to buy health insurance, many thousands will be killed off before they can collect Medicare benefits. Those that do survive till 65 will collect far fewer benefits and die earlier. None of this is an accident or unfortunate byproduct of the plans supported by their authors and corporate backers.

          Here is the utterly fraudulent nature of opposition to Trumpcare! It is utter treachery against the 90% to offer walks and procedural interruptions when nothing less is demanded than a permanent campaign to mobilize the working class to oppose preparations for the human culling of those too old or unwell to provide surplus value and profit for the wealthy.

          Peaceful resistance alone is permissible; but effective resistance is demanded. This means powerful strike action. State opposition to strike action will be anything but peaceful. But no advances of the working class are ever won without the blood of workers being shed. All state alone can use violence. This exposes ruling class hatred of working people to all.

          Our so-called ‘opposition’ is utterly unable and unwilling to offer this leadership. It must come from the working class. This alone will restore integrity, justice and legitimacy to the state. Under these arrangements alone can the 90% have meaningful citizenship. This is why a complete break from both capitalist parties is the first step in 90% resistance.

          Blessings!

      • Dear Sandi Saunders:

        I see twin defeats in special elections. Shoveling just shy of $40 million on Ossoff’s campaign, his 124,893 votes cost the Democrat Party a staggering $320 per vote. Despite targeting wealthy suburban districts where Trump performed poorly against Clinton, Ossoff lost still.

        Putting the best face on this Democrat disaster befalls the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee Chairperson. Enter Ben Lujan. Ben’s recommendation was stepped up recruitment for:

        ‘local leaders, veterans, business owners, women, job-creators, and health professionals. Let’s take the time to find people who fit their districts, have compelling stories, and work hard to earn support from voters.’

        In other words, the Democrat answer is to shift further right.

        This is truly astonishing!

        In any US congressional district almost without exception, the vast majority of the population is working class. Yet the Democrat Party commits to seeking ‘job creators’ – wealthy capitalists, business owners and doctors. In other words, candidates drawn from the top one percent, the most privileged layers in society.

        You say that the nation is not moving in a socialist direction. Democrat or Republican, the ‘average’ congressman is a millionaire separated by a wall of privilege from constituents who struggle daily to survive economically. How are they to see their utter social irrelevance to broader society?

        The Times has pointed out that the Democrat Party cannot craft a compelling economic message. If you elect not to believe that, learn from your special elections failures. I see far more ground for saying that the petty bourgeoisie party has no future than that the proletariat has no political future.

        The claim of both Capitalist parties to the national allegiance of the working class wears thin. Neither has even ONE solution to any of the crises bestriding the nation. Neither can offer a policy or an effective leader. They cannot rule except by narratives of deceit and by guns. The narratives are being rejected. But people fear your guns. In time, they will shed that fear. Then you’ll have to use them. Where will your allegiance be on that day, Sandi?

        Blessings!

        • Hello again, gdd. How’s tricks?

          It is stunning to note how many poor people voted for Trump due to the Democrats love of Identity Politics. If ever there was a clear sign of voter desperation, there it was … voting for the Maverick, unpredictable Outsider instead of the Career Politician … and the Democrats don’t want to listen.

          They don’t want to truly be the party of the poor and down-trodden. They don’t want to be the party of the struggling Middle/Working Class. As you have pointed out, they will spout the rhetoric, but won’t change the system itself which does more to protect the entrenched professional political class.

          I also love the answer ~ “let’s deal with Trump first then …” ~ because we can trust the Democratic Party to deliver after the country has been deadlocked for the next 3 1/2 years and we finally have a Democrat in the White House and a Democratic-controlled Congress.

          Or not.

          I somehow missed the Government delivering on that everlasting domestic peace, prosperity and tranquility the last time that happened and I’m not banking on the Democrats delivering next time it happens either.

          So gdd, what happens first ~ a responsible small government, or a government ‘Of the People, By the People and For the People’ delivering on social equality and unbiased justice for all?

          • Dear James Dosher:

            I’m not sure I’ll be able to answer since my post of 2 minutes ago came up, ‘awaiting moderation.’

            Not sure what happened, but there it is…

            Blessings!

          • Dear James Dosher:

            I’m seeing my posts now … so I’ll reply.

            I think the Democrat Party erred to base their campaign on narrow ‘identity politics’ relevant to a priviledged layer of society to the exclusion of a meaningful progressive appeal working people.

            I think we’re awaiting the entry of the masses into conscious political struggle for the progressive transformation of social organization. This will happen as we end the organization of society on the basis of classes and subsequent exploitation of human beings by other human beings.

            I’m not going to equate this with the Kingdom of God. But rightly or wrongly, I believe that this more closely approximates God’s Kingdom than other currently available options. Hope this helps!

            Blessings!

    • gdd, What color is the sky in your world? Your failure to acknowledge the truth is epidemic amongst 37% of our voting population. That’s the problem: failure to recognize the truth while it’s picking your pocket, all the while you salute.

      Sad state of affairs for all of us.

      • Dear RollieB:

        Is that your idea of socio-political analysis?

        Since I’m not clairvoyant, perhaps you’ll be so good as to explain what truth is supposed to be recognized.

        Blessings!

    • gdd,
      You say that “Hillary Clinton is the epitome of corrupt,” Why haven’t the True Believers of the Right filed charges against “the epitome of the corrupt”? Are they weak, incompetent losers?

  12. John:
    I am new to your website having just signed up to receive notice of your new postings. This is my first posting to one of your articles.
    I can’t thank you enough for being you! I have never experienced one persons’ writings that say exactly what I feel. Keep up this tremendous work you are doing and thank you again for being you.

    • Gerald Bienlein, welcome to the blog. You will find many of us of a like mind with John P. Also some very unwholesome trolls but such is to be expected.

      Looking forward to getting to know you here.

  13. For the last year I have felt alien and apart from others in my own country, the country I love. Then I look at our history.

    American Indians were robbed of the land they worshipped and “put in their place”. When someone wanted that land they were put in another place. Slaves were purposely brought to this country to be put in their place.

    Immigrants who came here seeking a better life were put in “sweat shops”. Later immigrants were hailed as we bragged about the “melting pot” of our country. Now certain immigrants are demonized again. We made a full circle. I have heard no one admit that they were replaced by an immigrant, yet immigrants are still blamed. As for those who came here illegally, they wouldn’t be here if someone here wasn’t paying them cash to work in agriculture or housing, or service jobs for what – to not have to pay taxes?

    During WWII we interred the Japanese. We took their property and their money.

    The LBGTQ Community has to fight to be treated as equals.

    We can look back and see the same behavior repeated over and over and over. Masters and slaves have been around since the beginning of civilization. Nothing has ever changed this dynamic.

    Was everyone who was a part of these behaviors evil or is this human behavior?

    I will always stand for what I believe but it seems that neither loud nor quiet voices have changed anything ever. I will always believe that there are more good people than evil people even when it seems that evil always wins.

    • Dear Joanne Musto:

      You have committed the ultimate, political blasphemy.

      You have spoken more truth than American ears are wont to hear.

      For that, you have my gratitude.

      At some point, it becomes imperative to reject the official narrative.

      With me, that happened a long time ago…

      Blessings!

        • Sandi I am not convinced gdd’s comment pissed on the heroes of America. History is full of heroes all around the world who did great things. IMO America is not the Kingdom of God because the Kingdom of God is not limited to America– so I think there is a patriotism beyond the scope of our political borders called humanity.

          • Beamer, do you read ALL of the posts gdd makes? His penchant for dissing America because we are not all Socialists is quite prevalent, so of course I took his point in that same vein.

            This place is not a vacuum.

            • Yes I have read many of gdd’s posts. But I don’t have a bias against him. I think he makes intelligent and valid points as well as looking beyond the surface of how the systems in world operate.

              • You got me there Beamer, I do have a bias against Socialists and I cut them no more slack than I do Libertarians, Marxists, Communists and those looking for unicorns.

                I also have a real peeve about those who come to anyone’s blog and try to tell them how they should do it.

                I should just learn to scroll over the posts when I know what is being said.

                • Interesting peeve. Mine is when posters on a blog appoint themselves as bosses, tell others to shut up, or otherwise act like they own the place.

                  • Clearly playing by any rules is beyond your capabilities, but whatever your life has involved, people disagreeing with your point is not appointing “themselves as bosses,” and once you were banned, you should have done the decent thing, and left the blog. YOU are the one acting like you own the place or that anyone owes you a place here.

                    • “Alfonso” Joe, had you ever had the common decency to contact John P and admit your many ID’s and why you could not be honest or consistent, or the reason you persisted by continually sneaking back in and denying what “our lying eyes” have seen, you might have a point, but you didn’t do that.

                      I feel you were “banned based on the truth”. Provide evidence to John P that you were not, I am beyond hearing you.

                      Common decency tells most people to use one entity and stick with it. Common decency says that someone who refuses to do so is not someone whose word can be trusted. I do not think our host owes us anything. What you refuse to see, is that this is HIS BLOG! It is not your personal stage and you cannot “boss” it either.

                      I do not support posts that said what you accused. If you call ignoring him, “a wink” that is your problem. You give plenty of “winks” and support to those who give us hell too.

                      Sure, blame others for your mistakes and stalk them and continue to attack them…way to prove your point by proving theirs!

                      No, you will not “do the “decent thing” and we all know it now. You are not capable.

                      You have been banned, you have stalked this blog and people on it, and you still whine about what you do not “respect” on a blog you have been repeatedly asked to leave? You are a special case of stalker!

                      Yes, clearly you “have better and more important things to do.”You just choose to stalk this blog.

                      Of course those who respect, support and appreciate John P will “come across as bossy” and I freely take on any attack against him or what he has said because I value it, I value him, and I see it all as well worth defending.

                      I don’t think you grasp the concept of respect or common decency but as a paying subscriber using my own name, I certainly have more skin in this game than an anonymous whining stalker. I do not think I cross anymore “lines” than the Christian Right does here. I guess you will just have to learn to live with it since you will not seek help to do the right thing you cannot do on your own.

                • It’s usually a better idea to try to understand a POV diametrically opposed to yours. Sometimes we need to have our ideas challenged in order to reevaluate them.

                  • Sheila, you draw your lines wherever you like, those are mine and I am honest about them. I have more than enough to juggle trying to understand conservatives and those more liberal than I am. The fantasy fringes are just chatter IMO. There is no Libertarian nation. There is no Socialist nation that anyone can point to in awe. There is certainly no Communist nation anyone can defend.

                    • Sheila and Beamer, I am not sure why anyone thinks I do not “understand a POV diametrically opposed to” mine. I understand gdd, leslie m, Joe Catholic of the many names, James Dosher, Jeff, and many of the people I do not agree with. I think I understand them very well.

                      Is it that you all want me not to dare disagree with them, or just to do so more gently? I am just not sure how anyone “benefits” from ignoring them or pretending to respect things like the Socialist Party line, or the fundamentalist Christian line, or the Conservative/Libertarian line, so do explain, please? And lastly, do you see them respecting my liberal Democratic line?

                    • Can I add, that you don’t go into the gutter with your disagreement either. I am mystified by why if we liberals speak up it’s wrong but for everyone else it’s just their POV. I agree with your POV most of the time and am pleased that you put it out there. You speak for a lot of us, so thanks. I didn’t see Leslie M or others get in a snit when Joe, under whatever name, became abusive, hateful and downright obscene. I don’t get it and I am disappointed. Keep at what you are doing, Peace and Love,

                    • Sandi wrote “Sheila and Beamer, I am not sure why anyone thinks I do not “understand a POV diametrically opposed to” mine. ”

                      A few years ago I noticed an interesting new dynamic in the way people communicate. Person A speaks. Person B responds in disagreement. Person A says “You didn’t listen to me” implying that had Person B really listened, Person B would have agreed with Person A. No recognition of Person B’s ability to disagree in a reasoned manner.

                      I feel like people are saying that if we understood each other, we would agree with each other. If that were the case, we would be a hive mind or pod people without minds of our own. Do we really want to be Stepford people?

                      When I was growing up, the USA was a very conservative country. Segregation was the rule. Miscegenation was illegal. Then Jack Kennedy was elected and I realized his more liberal attitudes more closely reflected what I most cherished about my faith. I learned from him and LBJ that my faith could inform my political choices. And so it has ever since.

                      I cannot be a conservative because their politics contradict Biblical teachings.

                    • If you refer to “lines”, even your own view as such, you miss my point. Go beyond the lines, which are usually only talking points. Engage on one aspect & dig deeper. Finding out how a person was persuaded to adopt certain beliefs is a good way to engage. That’s what has opened discussions for me, anyway. Cheers.

                    • Sheila, I am no longer sure where the disconnect is, but my integrity insists that I do try and understand where people are coming from and when it comes to Socialists, Libertarians, Communists and Anarchists, my lines are, and will remain very firm. I am sorry if that is a problem.

                      I do try my best to scroll past those with whom dialog has long since been exhausted or the possibility of acceptance is none. Sometimes I make the mistake of reading such posts and arguments ensue. I am only human.

                    • Hey Kathleen, Sandi and Gloriamarie!

                      We are talking about the difference between having different points of view and discussing them. Not every point of view has an opposite. Not every point of view is bad or wrong. Growth happens in society by sharing different ideas that benefit people and by choosing wisely when to apply those ideas.

                      For example some economic ideologies such as socialism and conservatism are helpful during different times in a nation’s socio-economic growth. gdd is a socialist and his perspective can be helpful. I am surprised that those who espouse Jesus cannot see how similar socialism is to the economic ideas Jesus espoused.

                      This “Joe” antagonist who has been created, formed and speculated about on this blog (and any tolls) who are mean or vicious can be that way independent of their beliefs. In my experience liberals and progressives can be mean, vicious, sarcastic, close minded as well. However my bias is towards progressive thinkers– yet I try not to let my bias affect my judgement.

                    • I agree that there are good ideas from all perspectives and I certainly hope that I at least listen. However, if I am ever crass, vicious or just plain mean, I would hope that someone would call me out because I don’t want to be perceived that way. When I first came here I could ignore but some are extraordinarily personal in their attack and I think to ignore is to condone. And yes there are good things in socialism, but it isn’t going to happen here, when you have workers voting for Donald Trump the antithesis of socialism, so one must work with what we have. We can’t throw the baby out with the water, just can’t. I am a realist, I believe that we need to start where we are and make it better, in spite of those who would do harm. Anyway that is my take and I get that others have their own way of dealing. I just wish that I would be respected, don’t have to agree with me, just respect me. I deserve that much. Normally I will tell you if I agree, sometimes if I disagree but I am not here to convert, I am here to learn and just find community of like souls. There are many posts that I vehemently disagree with but I am not going there because I recognize that most of them are not open to other thoughts. So all I can say is Peace and Love,

                    • Beamer, I suppose you were going for expediency in addressing the three of us as a monolith, but I must insist: 1) we are all different people with different styles of posting and conversing. 2) what we share is a friendship and support of John P.

                      Please do not tar them with anything you find wanting in me and do not grant me any goodness you see in them. I do not want you, or anyone else to think I am speaking for them when I post. I take responsibility for what I post, that is why I use my name.

                      For the record, both Kathleen and Gloriamarie have been much more indulgent and patient with gdd than I have been. Whether that means they agree with him, just agree that he should say his Socialist piece, or like him in general, is not for me to assume or project. So I don’t.

                      His repeated chiding of John P for not taking on the president not elected and the party not in the majority strikes me as an agenda and his repeated insults to the system laid out by our Constitution gets on my last nerve. I know I sound testy with him, but that is on me and on me alone.

                      As I have repeatedly said, I am painfully aware of the problems in our system; that does not mean I am going to entertain the Socialist Party as a guidepost or a goal. I support the Democratic Party Platform and Democratic candidates. Capitalism needs elements of socialism, we do not need to turn to Socialism and I want to be sure people know that distinction.

                      My problem is in people projecting that because I do not agree, I do not “understand” or because I call something BS I am trying to shut them down or tell them not to comment. Funny thing, no one says that to those who do both to me (just noticing not complaining).

                      As for the trolls and stalkers, nope, not gonna lighten up on them either. If you see them as adding anything to this blog, that is your choice, I do not. Point being, blame ME for what I post and leave Kathleen and Gloriamarie out of it.

                    • Well, my friend, the only problem with that is I agree with just about everything you say, so I don’t mind if they want to group me with you. It’s all good. And for the record the only reason I don’t take them on is because you do it so much better than I could. So keep on doing what you are doing and don’t apologize to anyone. Also I do agree about socialism. Gdd gets too wordy for me to take him on so am happy to leave him to you. Peace and Love,

                    • I was responding to the comment about scrolling past certain people. I suppose if one has exhausted all attempts at dialogue, such a decision makes sense. It came across as dismissing a person before taking a closer look at the ideas being expressed. No offense meant.

                    • Yes I am liberal / socialist leaning– progressive artist free thinker.

                      I worked for an organization in which I had to mediate disagreements and de-escalate hostile environments.

                      In every single case people kept their opinions and we came to an understanding.

                      Because– organizations are not allowed to fire people for their beliefs– instead they had to find a person to mediate and help those in conflict find places of commonality in order to move forward.

                      Most people (except for insane people) want to work together. And, what I see in the political climate right now is agitators and trolls who are in a minority riling up people to hate the “differences of opinions” in each other.

                      People are being manipulated by those like Alex Jones and Trump– who is the biggest con artist and hate monger of them all. I tend to feel empathy and compassion for those who are indecisive and being led around by fear.

                      So I think we agree with the overall horrible state of affairs.

                      I believe the church is like this and would be helped along if we worked together — conservative and liberals , progressives and traditionalist, believers and seekers — and the Kingdom of God would benefit from this loving cooperation. We then would be a light for the unbelievers, other religions, the oppressed, the marginalized and the confused.

                      peace and love to you both ! 😀

                • Thanks for you 2 cents Alfonso but I think Sandi is free to do whatever she wants.

                  Sandi, I appreciate gdd’s point of view and I don’t think it is out of place here. I think different perspectives are needed.

                  Anyways those are my thoughts in a nutshell

                • Sandi the thing about bias is that we all have them to a certain degree– being unbiased does not mean the absence of bias rather it means that one chooses to remain impartial and open to others, in the face of it.

        • Sandi, I am confused. What part of Joanne Musto’s comment is wrong? Those things are true of the USA.

          Have you by any chance read Zinn’s A People’s History of the USA?

          • Gloriamarie, I was with her until the end. I found the end quite insufferable. “Nothing has ever changed this dynamic.” Really? Nothing?

            “Was everyone who was a part of these behaviors evil or is this human behavior?” Seriously? That is way to large a brush.

            “I will always stand for what I believe but it seems that neither loud nor quiet voices have changed anything ever. I will always believe that there are more good people than evil people even when it seems that evil always wins.

            Is that how you feel about America?

            • Not how I feel or we would still have slavery, women wouldn’t be able to vote and on and on and on. That is defeatist talk, then people think why bother, it’s never going to change. That is how we ended up where we are.

        • Sandi,

          You stole my thunder! I was about to say basically the same thing…but you said it well.

          The United States is not a perfect country…our history is not perfect. However, I believe that overall, we are the greatest nation in the world and it was those loud and quiet voices that got us where we are.

          • As a student of history, I don’t think the USA is now or ever has been the greatest nation on the earth.

            We’ve done some wonderful things. But not enough to make us the greatest nation.

            • Gloriamarie, I agree. I think a part of being a great nation would have the country, as a whole, see the majority of citizens as the same worth – the infirm, the aged, the young, the rich and the poor.

              When did it happen that a person’s worth became tied to their back account or their genius, or their power, or their lack of strength, or the way they love?

              I am not a student of anything but you are. Why do you think this happens? Both men and women of all colors and groups have, at times, been judged by their worth. Is there a greatest nation on earth?

              • Janne wrote, “. I think a part of being a great nation would have the country, as a whole, see the majority of citizens as the same worth – the infirm, the aged, the young, the rich and the poor.”

                I would say all the citizens of the country, not just the majority, and I would add that a truly great nation would consider the citizenry of the world to be of the same worth.

                Joanne asked, “Why do you think this happens? Both men and women of all colors and groups have, at times, been judged by their worth. Is there a greatest nation on earth?”

                No, there is not a greatest nation on earth, although I think Canada beats the USA in many ways.

                Why do I think this happens? Viewing things from a historical perspective, I think the basic dynamic is fear of that which is different from one’s self. This fear gets institutionalized and becomes the norm. In my opinion, we human beings need to grow up, we need to face our fears.

                I thought the USA had demonstrated this when we elected and then re-elected Obama, but considering what has come crawling out of the woodwork since that night in 11/08, I was proven wrong in my hope that we had outgrown such claptrap.

                I hope this helps.

                • Gloriamarie, thank you for your response. I also agree value should be extended to the citizenry of the world. Our country is filled with so many blessings denied to other countries.

                  Peace

                  • Joanne wrote “. Our country is filled with so many blessings denied to other countries.”

                    Not for long, I fear. The GOP wish to rewrite the Constitution in their image and likeness.

                • Okay, I said it was good America is ranked 7th just not the greatest , if that offended you I am sorry.

                  I am sure not being the greatest nation is a disappointment to many other countries as there can only be one.

                  …and I am not Joe.

                  • What was the insuklt was this “Sorry to burst your bubble. ” That feels condescending and patronizing. You could have disagreed in a respectful manner.

                    I never said you were Joe, but by your own admission you have posted under several aliases. One of them was “anonymous.” One of the people posting as anonymous used to write hideous things to me and so I don’t trust any one who posts anonymously or did post that way.

                    Therefore, I am in a wait and see mode about “Beamer.”

                    • I have never made a hideous comment to you and NEVER will.

                      And my comment “sorry to burst your bubble” was not directed at you so I don’t know why you jumped in and took it personally.

                      In any event this blog is not a safe for me which is why I posted as “Anonymous because people are mean”

                      I shortened it to “abpam” then leslie m called me “abeam” by mistake (which made me chuckle and laugh because of a nickname I have at work — which is similar) so I took the nickname Beamer.

                      peace 🙂

                    • Beamer, your comment “And my comment “sorry to burst your bubble” was not directed at you so I don’t know why you jumped in and took it personally.” came in my email as “in response to Gloriamarie Amalfitano” Which led me to believe, since you didn’t address it to anyone, that you were saying it to me. Especially because I had said I didn’t think there was any “greatest nation.”

                      Perhaps, to avoid future misunderstandings, if you are saying something to a particular person, it would be helpful to use that person’s name.

                      You say you never wrote anything obnoxious to me. Fine, I’ll accept your word on that. But considering you admitted that you were posting as an anonymous at the time the obnoxious comments were made, you can see where it might make me nervous.

                    • Beamer, since you said, this blog is not “safe” for you, maybe you can understand why someone who has been attacked viciously, doxed, cruelly taunted, and mistreated by those who use several entities would be a bit leery? The parameters of anonymity and the cruelty of multiple entities is a problem on the web not just here, and those who are bitten, are understandably twice shy. Especially those who do post under their actual name and share much about their life.

                      Thank you for explaining your own choice to change names and explain you are not one of the tormentors.

                    • Sandi wrote “Beamer, since you said, this blog is not “safe” for you, maybe you can understand why someone who has been attacked viciously, doxed, cruelly taunted, and mistreated by those who use several entities would be a bit leery? ”

                      Thank you. I see no reason why I should be expected to apologize for my own personal safety concerns.

                      What I find ironic about this situation is that person now posting as “Beamer” also posted as “Anonymous because people are mean” which communicated to me at the time that sobriquet was used, that this person had also been on the receiving end of some hideous treatment.

                      I daresay the anonymous who so viciously trolled me is Many Names, but I can never be certain. There were entirely too many people posting as anonymous and so once one of them trolled me, I never read any comments by others.

                      It appears that John P has changed some parameters and people are no longer allowed to post as anonymous.

                    • Okay Gloriamarie, I will do my best 🙂

                      There was someone who hurt me a very long time a go whose name is Keith. For a long time I was revulsed by that name because it reminded me of the abuse. However common sense told me that not everyone named Keith is abusive. It’s hard when you are hurt to not be wary of others. I understand that.

                      be good to yourself 🙂

              • Beamer.

                I don’t know how one votes for ‘the greatest nation in the world.’ … but Switzerland has a population of 8 million — the same as NY City. [And it is 1/2 the size of South Carolina. ]

                Canada (roughly the same land mass as USA) has 36 million people compared to our 325 million. UK (can nearly fit inside California 2x) has 65 million.

                • haha– well America is one of the greatest countries in the world proved by it’s large population!! 🙂

                  They used this criteria
                  — Adventure : friendly, fun, pleasant climate, scenic, sexy

                  — Citizenship ; cares about human rights, cares about the environment, gender equality, progressive, religious freedom, respects property rights, trustworthy, well-distributed political power

                  — Cultural Influence : culturally significant in terms of entertainment, fashionable, happy, has an influential culture, modern, prestigious, trendy

                  — Entrepreneurship: connected to the rest of the world, educated population, entrepreneurial, innovative, provides easy access to capital, skilled labor force, technological expertise, transparent business practices, well-developed infrastructure, well-developed legal framework

                  –Heritage : culturally accessible, has a rich history, has great food, many cultural attractions

                  — Movers : different, distinctive, dynamic, unique

                  — Open for Business : bureaucratic, cheap manufacturing costs, corrupt, favorable tax environment, transparent government practices

                  — Power : a leader, economically influential, politically influential, strong international alliances, strong military

                  — Quality of Life : a good job market, affordable, economically stable, family friendly, income equality, politically stable, safe, well-developed public education system,

                  • beamer.

                    –thanks for the extensive list of criteria …now it makes more sense.

                    Switzerland is an all ‘white’ country. The less than 1% of Blacks that do live there, report high level of racial prejudice.

                    Cost of living is 75% higher than USA, and rents are 45% higher.

                    • … i meant to say, ‘in addition, Switzerland is an ‘all white’ country. I am by no means relating its high marks of live-ablilty to its racial make up. Just noting a curious aspect of Switzerland. They have virtually no ‘minorities’.

                  • Thanks for that criteria info Beamer. Many will not hear it, but the world is older than America and there are things we can learn and solutions we can emulate from some of them.

                    • Sandi wrote, “Many will not hear it, but the world is older than America and there are things we can learn and solutions we can emulate from some of them.”

                      Ain’t that just the blippin’ truth!!

                      The histories of other countries is rich with wonderful, beautiful stuff.

                    • Hehehe … Yeah, I once brought that up in fiction when a US official was talking about American Exceptionalism and was countered by the example of how the Mongols worked literature, arts & sciences in their empire to create a powerful, multi-lingual, multi-ethnic, multi-religious state.

                      For Americans to assume cultural superiority is to ignore the bizarre circumstances of the World in 1945.

                      Africa, the Middle East & the Subcontinent were still mostly under colonial rule.

                      South America was working out the tail end of their Wars of Independence and resulting border disputes.

                      China was still in the midst of her long-running Civil War.

                      Europe, including Russia/Soviet Union, was devastated.

                      SE Asia had another 45 years of colonial wars to work through.

                      Too few people recall how lucky our Nation was.

            • Dear Gloriamarie Amalfitano:

              I think that the whole ‘greatest nation’ thing is misguided. As citizens of God’s kingdom, I would think that a more pressing concern would be to manifest more clearly God’s grace and goodness and forgiveness and life in the world. That tired, ‘greatest nation’ discussion sounds a little too much like a conversation once hosted by Jesus’ disciples.

              Blessings!

              • gdd, yes, I agree with you. Jesus says that the Kingdom of Heaven is “at hand” which means to me we can reach out and touch it right this moment.

                We read the writings of the early church and we see that they also knew they could reach out and touch it.

        • Dear Sandi Saunders:

          Maybe we have different heroes. I like …

          Eugene Victor Debs, incarcerated for opposing war.
          Big Bill Haywood, framed/executed by the state.
          Helen Keller [ http://tinyurl.com/mdgmpxt ]
          James P. Cannon

          Blessings!

          PS: Did you read Helen Keller’s speech as I asked?

    • Sorry Joanne, I disagree. History is also full of the heroes who led us in the right direction. From the American Revolution to drafting the US Constitution to winning the Civil War to freed slaves and women getting the right to vote, to integrating the military, to gay weddings, we have accomplished a lot that the majority did not always support.

      “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

      • Sandi, in your eagerness to tell others how you so righteously disagree did you even read my last paragraph? And where in gdd words did you see him pissing on anyone? If you cannot see that for all the people who have fought and even died for the good in this country bad things still happen and will probably continue to happen and isn’t that what many of us feel we are fighting and standing against right now?

        • Seriously? My “eagerness to tell others how you so righteously disagree?” Does every post you make have to turn into you being a victim if someone dares to reply without fawning agreement?

          Yes, I read your last paragraph and you said “it seems that neither loud nor quiet voices have changed anything ever.” I find that to not be true at all. What is it you think changed just because it wanted to?

    • America is the new Rome and it doesn’t matter who the Caesar is because Rome continues on after he topples over. Even if you resist Trump there will be another to take his place.

      The solution?

      Every person who is able to, currently has the freedom to get involved in grass roots social and political change which challenges the system.

      This is something that most Americans who are able can do –as a permanent commitment– by giving up some of their leisure time.

      • Precisely Beamer! Well said. We resist, we persist, we insist, because not to do our best, no matter what, is not in us.

        Agreeing about tough times is not the same as giving in to them or giving up.

    • It appears that evil always wins only because that is what gets covered. There are, daily, small, unnoticed acts of kindness, generosity and conscience that go unreported because they are not done for recognition.

    • Joanne, forgive me for pointing out an error: you said we “interred” the Japanese in WW II. I believe you meant to say that we “interned” the Japanese. Although in a certain sense, you may have a point….

  14. Since you made that same remark yesterday, but posting under a different name, one is forced to conclude that you are he of the many aliases whim John P bans every single day but you keep coming back like a little child who won’t take no for an answer.

  15. Well I’am fully versed in where you are coming from John.
    These people would seemingly rather keep their tax money and partner with an individual that refuses to kneel to Jesus than help millions of poorer Americans(Jesus), all with a soul as valuable as any gated community member, avoid losing desperately needed healthcare in the richest nation on earth where every other developed nation covers it’s people with healthcare.

    What do I do but write it up to the phenomena of America, the richest nation on earth, where even the very elect succumb to materialism and indifference tragically enabling them to accept a callous “looking out for me” economic ideology that serves in essence the rich and powerful.
    I always thought they might go even further into compromising with this ideology but I didn’t really believe they would write off lesser off fellow Americans when it came to life sustaining healthcare.

    We have really turned a hard-heartened corner on that one but we must never underestimate the dark “gravitational” power of money and mammon.

    The really tragic thing is we are setting ourselves up for a tyrant to rise and persecute Christianity not on the basis of our love, mercy, justice and forgiveness of which I was for so long ready to dare a “antichrist” to do but now it is so apparent that persecution can now be easily delivered upon Christianity for selfishness, bigotry, indifference to the poor, racism and imbalanced service to the rich and powerful.

    I think what all of us must do is dwindle down this right-wing atrocity with the fundamentalist evangelicals. The religious right must become ashamed of themselves. We can articulate it, Jesus would articulate it. Yes there is work to be done. but thankfully it is being articulated on “Stuff That Needs To Be Said”.

    Jesus had to deal with this stuff from the religious establishment, pharisees and such so maybe we are exactly where we should be and saying what we should say and we definitely should not feel on the outside. We are on the Jesus side, imho.

    Thank you for these articles. They are beyond encouraging and they are clearly articulated from a deeply profound and conscientious heart.

      • Hi Sandi! Thank you for that.
        Hopefully I can get on here more and get into some of these discussions like the one that ran below. John gets responses, that’s for certain.

    • Doug Waterman, welcome, thanks for joining us.

      You wrote “They are beyond encouraging and they are clearly articulated from a deeply profound and conscientious heart.”

      Thank you for understanding this. Thank you for understand John P loves Jesus and struggles to make Jesus known in this world. John’s prophetic words serve as mirror, as do the prophetic words spoken in the Hebrew Scriptures or by Jesus. We human beings see our reflection in the mirror and we react. We have seen the reaction of the Pharisees and Sadducees to the mirror of Jesus’ words.

      I can only pray that my reaction is different. That when I see something I dislike in the mirror, that I work to change myself so the mirror better reflects Jesus back to the world.

  16. Boy … this is going to be ugly. I’ve broken this up into two posts:

    “These were people I’d come to see as family (or actually were family), people I’d believed loved God and their neighbors as themselves, people who made me proud to be called a Christian. The more I spoke, the more quiet they became. The louder I got, the more they withdrew.”

    Maybe it was because they got tired of you calling them racist, bigoted misogynists? Maybe it was because you were acting irrationally after they voted Donald Trump for President and they decided enough abuse was enough, you didn’t care for any of their reasons for voting for Trump, or not voting for Hillary. You lambasted them and rehashed the same old, tired arguments they’d dealt with countless times before yet you failed to accept their answers for.

    And then …

    “We’d elected an incompetent, immoral monster to lead our nation, one who’s trampled on nearly every marginalized community and every sacred inch of our Constitution and bastardized our shared faith tradition—but I was the problem they were having. My volume was an issue. That was unnerving to them. That was a moral quandary. Chastising me was the one bit of activism they could muster up.”

    Yeah ~ the above. Now, since we don’t think our President is an incompetent, immoral monster – since we don’t play the race/gender/religious games of Oppressor/Oppressed (which are the hallmarks of Marxism) like you so gleefully do – since we don’t think our Constitution isn’t being trampled – and you refuse to accept our rationale for what our President and Congress are doing as legitimately-elected arms of our Executive and Legislative branches, THAT IS ON YOU … not on White Christians.

    “I don’t blame them.”

    Wow! That’s a whooper. Pastor John, you blame ‘them’ all the time. You call ‘them’ un-Christian virtually every week. Condemnation follows condemnation. You do blame ‘them’. I don’t know why you would post differently.

    “As long as I live, I don’t think I’ll ever understand how so many white people of Jesus suddenly disappeared, just when the world he cared about most needed them to be visible. I wonder if they realize that to so many who are deeply wounded and terribly frightened right now—Jesus has disappeared along with them.”

    For the finale ~ more flagellation for the White folk.

    Here’s a clue, Pastor John. Those people didn’t ‘disappear’. They didn’t go anywhere. You turned your back on them. You excluded them. You put up the fences of exclusion, not them. You decided on what level of doctrinal purity was acceptable and to toss out of your sight all who didn’t measure up to your standards.

    They are serving Jesus just fine. They are still working Jesus’ will in this World just fine too, just not according to your vision. That doesn’t make them not Christians, or even not good Christians. It means they aren’t beholden to you to determine how they serve Jesus – the Son, God – the Father, and the Holy Spirit.

    You have closed your doors to these people. Before that, you closed your ears in the same way you closed off your mind and heart. They didn’t change on that November day – you did. You had created this illusion of who they were they had no obligation to support. It was your fallacy which was challenged and you have recoiled from this discovery … yet you blame them for who they have always been instead of yourself for living this falsehood.

    Your unsustainable Fantasy Land came crashing down … for you and plenty of people like you as was obvious by the disbelief and backlash that night and the next day. From the anger, bile and hatred which followed ~ from the Left ~ it is clear you would rather blame us for destroying your delusions than accept it is perfectly natural for people to act in opposition as over 62 million Americans did.

    Instead of wondering why the Republicans have the Oval Office and both Houses of Congress, you could as ‘why’ the American populace has voted this way. You are not. You are blaming us instead. You are claiming we have turned away from Christ’s teachings, or some other such innuendo about our disenfranchisement from our Humanity. The latter are always the easier options after all.

    • Mr. Dosher wrote “Maybe it was because they got tired of you calling them racist, bigoted misogynists? ”

      Please demonstrate your evidence that John P did any such thing?

      I am of the opinion that whether people knew it or not, when they voted the GOP into power they really voted for authoritarianism, bigotry, bisexuality phobia, discrimination, fascism, gynophobia, homophobia, intolerance of that which is different, intolerance of those who are different from one’s self, intolerance of those who disagree with one’s self, intolerance of an informed disagreement, isolationism, misogyny, prejudice, racism, rape, sexual assault/molestation, transgenderphobia, white supremacy, and xenophobia.

      But I have never heard John P label anyone “racist, bigoted misogynists” although i suspect they are.

      • Ms. Amalfitano, my apologize.

        In this case, I was using the plural ‘you’ as a writing device, not specifically referring to Pastor John. As I moved between talking specifically to Pastor Pavlovitz and the ‘Resistance’ in general, I could have – and now do – clarify this.

        I do not recall Pastor John Pavlovitz ever referring to me, or others, as racist, bigoted misogynists, or any derivation of those slurs.

        **

        As for your claims:

        Authoritarianism ~ how so? Trump was a renegade in the Republican Party so not likely to be able to rule by fiat, or decree. At no time did I imagine Trump becoming a dictator because of this.

        Bigotry ~ toward whom? His father faced charges in the 1970’s with some properties where he drove Black families out of properties to up the values. In Trump’s long hiring history I never recall a charge of bigotry being leveled at him – and such opportunities have certainly occurred.

        Bisexuality phobia & homophobia ~ before he was even the Republican front runner he identified with the Rainbow banner. After he was won, he continued to identify as such. He did so when inaugurated. His Sec. of State was the guy who made the Boy Scouts accept both Homosexual Scouts and Scout Masters.

        Discrimination & intolerance ~ against who? He doesn’t hate, or incite anyone to hate, anybody. A ban against nations with weak security structures and with Islamic insurgencies, or histories of State-sponsored terrorism. He is against ILLEGAL immigration, not Hispanic-Americans.

        Sure, he’ll talk some crap, and tweet some stuff, but he has never been out to create a Race War.

        Fascism ~ okay, this one isn’t even possible. I’m not sure why people keep bringing it up. The economic situation doesn’t exist to inspire a fascist take-over nor does Trump have a paramilitary following which would allow him to seize power. Then we have to look at how Trump isn’t looking to create State-sponsored culture, art and control of industry. Those are all factors of fascism as well.

        Trump is out to reduce government influence in the economy, not increase. That is why people are screaming Holy Hell about the goings on at the EPA (as one example).

        Gynophobia ~ okay, you can stack up a ‘grab that p***y’ and I’ll counter how he actually treats women in his life including his daughters and grandaughters. All those October cases which blossomed before the Election seem to have evaporated afterwards – because they had no substance.

        In the case of the Miss Universe who went on to have that drug lord’s kid – Ms. Piggy? He also refused to drop her though he could do so due to her contract. Instead, he invigorated her to exercise, get in shape and worked out those endorsement deals.

        He could have gone with the alternate, but he gave her a second chance. She went on to finish her tenure and a career in TV and modelling because Trump didn’t abandon her.

        He is certainly no feminist, but he’s hardly gynophobic, or a misogynist either. I don’t thing he will be convincing any female interns to polish his knob in the Oval Office unlike some other pro-Women’s President we could name.

        • Mr. Dosher, I did not limit these “qualities” to Trump. These are the qualities of the entire GOP.

          And sadly, if people voted for Trump and the GOP, then they also voted for these “qualities.”

          Also, even a skimming of the real news supports my assertions.

        • James,

          I’ve asked Gloriamarie as well as several others on this blog to support their claims of Trump’s “ists” and “phobias” and they have not yet been able to do it. Maybe you will have better luck.

          The fact is voting for Trump doesn’t make one a bigot. Perhaps it is just easier to call people names than it is to understand and debate their arguments.

          • Jeff lied when he wrote “I’ve asked Gloriamarie as well as several others on this blog to support their claims of Trump’s “ists” and “phobias” and they have not yet been able to do it. ”

            It’s been done, over and over. The problem is you don’t like the evidence.

            • Hmmm…then refresh my memory. I don’t remember you ever showing any evidence at all…you just repeat your long list over and over again. Sorry, but that’s not proof.

              • Jeff, I am not going to play your game.

                It’s been provided.

                I’ve invited you to join my FB group which reveals even more information.

                But I would think the despicable nature of the proposed no health care bill would prove the point for any discerning person with critical thinking skills.

                • On second though Here’s a fine example of misogyny at work. Apparently the GOP of NC believe rape is perfectly acceptable.

                  “In North Carolina you can’t legally withdraw consent after sex begins, letting rapists escape unpunished

                  ‘North Carolina is the only state in the country where no doesn’t really mean no,’ says Senator Jeff Jackson”

                  http://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/americas/north-carolina-rape-law-change-mind-during-sex-a7803806.html

                  • Ms. Amalfitano, the wife and I are keeping an eye on this as well. Things of note:

                    State vs. Way was a 1979 State Supreme Court Ruling which stated a woman could not withdraw sexual consent once the actual act of sex had commenced. Currently, no such law exists which clarifies this either way.

                    In fact, only nine State have a law on the books which allow a woman to withdraw consent once sex begins. Nine.

                    The usual excuse appears to be … ‘is it is common sense’ … which sounds really weak to me.

                    Counteracting that, how do you prove this beyond a ‘he said / she said’? A decent man doesn’t need a law to tell him ‘no/stop’ means back off. The ‘other type’ isn’t going to care and precisely what proof is it going to take?

                    Violent sex? Violent sex happens and can be consensual.

                    On one hand, a victim shouldn’t have to suffer damage to prove they were raped. On the other, the word of the accuser alone shouldn’t be enough to condemn anyone. When consent is given then retracted, it becomes a Prosecutor’s nightmare.

                    Before we rush off in one Hell of a hurry, change up the gender in the above paragraph. Say a woman gives consent to another woman, a man gives consent to another man, or a man gives consent to a woman … and then see how you like one person’s testimony on how, in the middle of sex, consent was withdrawn and then it became rape.

                    Not as easy as it appears.

                    As for it being a case for misogyny … it it was, I think there would be laws permitting things like men being allowed to have sex with their wives ~ no consent required. A law actually enshrining the removal of consent once sex began would also be misogyny. Neither such law exists in North Carolina. Misogyny would be tossing out our Rape Shield Law.

    • I couldn’t have said it better myself.

      The fact that Pavlovitz and others on the left rely on false and unproven accusation of bigotry against those with whom they disagree is off-putting. Perhaps if JP assumed that conservatives are just people who disagree with his point of view — and engaged with them on that level, he wouldn’t see so many of them disappear.

      How can he expect his white Christian friends to continue to speak to him if he is constantly implying that they are bigots because they don’t subscribe to his point of view? This tendency to use name-calling instead of rational arguments is one of the reasons people rejected the left in this last election.

      Unfortunately, it doesn’t seem like they have learned from their mistakes. It’s far easier to just blame others, isn’t it?

      • Jeff wrote, quite disingenuously, “How can he expect his white Christian friends to continue to speak to him if he is constantly implying that they are bigots because they don’t subscribe to his point of view? This tendency to use name-calling instead of rational arguments is one of the reasons people rejected the left in this last election.”

        It is such a cop out to say it is because they disagree with his opinion.

        If you want to know why some of us liberals might consider Trump & COP voters to have depolrable values, it might just because none are raising their voices against the authoritarianism, bigotry, bisexuality phobia, discrimination, fascism, gynophobia, homophobia, intolerance of that which is different, intolerance of those who are different from one’s self, intolerance of those who disagree with one’s self, intolerance of an informed disagreement, isolationism, misogyny, prejudice, racism, rape, sexual assault/molestation, transgenderphobia, white supremacy, and xenophobia displayed by Congress, Trump’s executive orders, Cabinet appointees, health nocare bill etc.

        If one doesn’t wish to be thought complicit in authoritarianism, bigotry, bisexuality phobia, discrimination, fascism, gynophobia, homophobia, intolerance of that which is different, intolerance of those who are different from one’s self, intolerance of those who disagree with one’s self, intolerance of an informed disagreement, isolationism, misogyny, prejudice, racism, rape, sexual assault/molestation, transgenderphobia, white supremacy, and xenophobia, then one must protest it.

        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/

        • “If one doesn’t wish to be thought complicit in authoritarianism, bigotry, bisexuality phobia, discrimination, fascism, gynophobia, homophobia, intolerance of that which is different, intolerance of those who are different from one’s self, intolerance of those who disagree with one’s self, intolerance of an informed disagreement, isolationism, misogyny, prejudice, racism, rape, sexual assault/molestation, transgenderphobia, white supremacy, and xenophobia, then one must protest it.”

          You keep saying his policies support this long, fake list of yours…but you have yet to tell me how. So the question is…why do you believe something if you can’t even back it up?

          • Jeff lied again when he wrote “You keep saying his policies support this long, fake list of yours…but you have yet to tell me how. So the question is…why do you believe something if you can’t even back it up?”

            It’s been backed up and you chose to ignore it and then complain the evidence was withheld.

            I am sorry you don’t like the evidence and don’t choose to be informed by it. I can only take a horse to water, I can’t make it drink, no matter how much the horse needs it.

      • Jeff, I get it you are kinda desperate for validation, but the facts remain: 1) every stereotype is based on some perceived reality and 2) they are not “false and unproven accusation of bigotry” they are court clerks, florists, pastors and many “Christian right” leaders proclaiming what needs to be done to the LGBTQ, minorities, immigrants, refugees, women who seek abortion and liberals. I get not liking it, who could? But it is not false. It is just not true for ALL conservatives.

        If Christian conservatives had not married the Republican Party, you could logically argue that you’re all “just people who disagree with his point of view” but that is not the reality we are dealing with.

        I do not think he does expect (or want) “his white Christian friends to continue to speak to him.” I think, like his rhetorical question the other day, you all are taking him too literally. He does not engage here anymore that I have seen. He is not asking for a dialogue as far as I can tell.

        Are you trying to claim no Christian Right bloggers or commenters have a “tendency to use name-calling instead of rational arguments?” Because I am gonna argue that one too! It happens when some preachers get fired up, or when Alex Jones needs revenue.

        Sure, maybe you all think you rejected a rattlesnake in 2016, but that will not excuse choosing a copperhead!

        Unfortunately, it doesn’t seem like any of us have learned from our mistakes. It is absolutely easier to blame and vilify than to join and ignore. Having been on the receiving end since 2008, I KNOW what I am speaking of.

        • “Jeff, I get it you are kinda desperate for validation, but the facts remain: 1) every stereotype is based on some perceived reality and 2) they are not “false and unproven accusation of bigotry” they are court clerks, florists, pastors and many “Christian right” leaders proclaiming what needs to be done to the LGBTQ, minorities, immigrants, refugees, women who seek abortion and liberals. I get not liking it, who could? But it is not false. It is just not true for ALL conservatives.”

          That’s cute.

          But saying that every stereotype is based on some perceived reality is not an argument.

          So what are these bigoted, hateful florists, pastors, and court clerks proclaiming should be done to LGBTQ, minorities, immigrants, refugees, abortions, and liberals?

          Conservatives views on these issues may not line up with yours, but that doesn’t automatically make them bigots.

          “Are you trying to claim no Christian Right bloggers or commenters have a “tendency to use name-calling instead of rational arguments?” Because I am gonna argue that one too! It happens when some preachers get fired up, or when Alex Jones needs revenue.”

          I’m not saying NO Christian right bloggers use name calling. I’m actually talking about the larger conversation. Most of the left’s rhetoric regarding conservatives consists of false labels they apply to their political opponents. It’s the reason they invented all these “‘ists” and “‘phobes.” It’s a way to shut down your opponent without actually having to engage with their arguments.

          On the right, you don’t see this as much. Conservatives haven’t invented a whole list of names they use to discredit their opponents. “Libtard” is the only one I can think of off the top of my head…and it’s ridiculous. But calling someone a libtard is a silly name. Calling someone a hateful bigoted fascist is far worse…especially when you have no good reason to say it.

          And Alex Jones is a nut.

          • Jeff, there is nothing “cute” about it, but it is still reality. Stereotype is defined as “a widely held but fixed and oversimplified image or idea of a particular type of person or thing” so yes, they are based on some perceived reality by definition.

            Google is your friend and I am not your research assistance. You may easily ask and read up on what those bigoted, hateful florists, pastors, and court clerks have proclaimed should be done to LGBTQ, minorities, immigrants, refugees, abortions, and liberals. None of it was flattering to conservatives or loving either.

            Again, you keep pretending I have said ALL Conservatives and I have not done so. There are rational conservatives who do not offer such views and I am well aware of it. And they never even try to defend those who do.

            Nothing makes anyone “automatically” anything. Their words, their actions, what they defend and what they decry does that.

            Sorry, you go to some of those very popular right-wing websites in the link I offered that people visit and then get back to me on why think you can claim “Most of the left’s rhetoric regarding conservatives consists of false labels they apply to their political opponents” as if the Right does not. Limbaugh, Hannity, Savage, Jones, O’Reilly, Beck, Ingraham, Coulter (to name a few), offer every inch as much name-calling, hateful rhetoric as anyone on the Left.

            Of course it is all “a way to shut down your opponent” on both sides, but all will argue that they do “engage with their arguments.”

            If you can say “On the right, you don’t see this as much” then I can only conclude, you do not visit many Conservative sites or discussion forums, just those of the folks you do not agree with.

            There is in fact a rather long list of insults used against us. Not the least of which is “Libtard” (which says how they feel about the mentally handicapped?).

            Sure, calling someone “a hateful bigoted fascist” is far worse than calling someone a “crazy, Marxist, Communist, hate America first, dirty hippie.” I could write you a book about what I have been called since 2008.

      • Jeff. — i think it’s incongruent that Pastor John supports all who leave The Church due to being treated poorly, but he takes issue with ‘white Christians’ that have ‘left’ him (due to being treated poorly.)

    • Yes, that was “ugly.” And dishonest, and totally as lacking in any self-reflection as you claim John P was. Your blinders are so tight, nothing is going to penetrate. Not the truth John P is telling and not the truth many of us are experiencing as you folks who you claim are still “serving Jesus just fine.” and “…still working Jesus’ will in this World,” who did not “put up the fences of exclusion” and who “don’t play the race/gender/religious games.”

      No doubt they are tired of being called racist, bigoted misogynists, but are they tired of being racist, bigoted misogynists yet? Evidence says no.

      Of course you don’t think our Constitution is being trampled now that a rich white man is making all the Executive Orders. Obama and Pelosi et al were also legitimately elected. Not that you would ever know that by the way the so called Christian Right behaved since 2008!

      Whether you accept it or not, they have and they are acting “un-Christian.”

      Sure, it was John P who “decided on what level of doctrinal purity was acceptable” not those Bible thumpers seeking to legally discriminate against or punish Gays, women who have abortions, minorities, the poor, immigrants and refugees.

      For the record, no one has said anyone is “beholden” to John P “to determine how they serve Jesus – the Son, God – the Father, and the Holy Spirit.” But you ARE beholden to show the Scripture that defeats what Jesus taught and upholds what you seek.

      What you claim 62 million voters wanted, 65 million voters did not!

      You were right about one thing, ” They didn’t change on that November day” they are EXACTLY as they have been for decades. He (we all), should have seen that sooner.

      • “No doubt they are tired of being called racist, bigoted misogynists, but are they tired of being racist, bigoted misogynists yet? Evidence says no.”

        What evidence? Where is the evidence that says the majority of Trump voters are racist, bigoted, misogynists? Still haven’t seen it. And telling me about all the bigoted white people you have met won’t count…if you’re going to make a claim like that, you would need something more than anecdotal evidence…and you don’t have it.

        So basically you’re calling people racists who aren’t racist, and then wondering why they don’t listen to you. Name-calling is not debate. They left has labeled conservatives bigots when they’re not bigots…and now they’re wondering why they got Trump. After awhile, people stop taking your false accusations seriously.

        • Jeff, show me where I said “the majority of Trump voters are racist, bigoted, misogynists?” Show me?

          Are you denying that Trump campaigned on an anti-immigrant, anti-Muslim and anti-women platform?

          What candidate in modern memory said that women who seek abortions should be subject to “some form of punishment?”

          “Economic anxiety” is hardly a white only or even a white mainly issue, is it? If his platform was credibly aimed at US Workers then black voters and Hispanic voters need that more than whites…but they did not see that as credible.

          Did Trump not have very vocal “alt Right” support at his rallies and in social media? Are they not racist? Bigoted? Trump supporters?

          Again, I never have or would say all (or even most) Trump supporters are racists or bigots or misogynists, but I will say that the rhetoric over him not being Clinton when he is clearly as corrupt as she ever has been, the rhetoric over how acceptable those hated Executive Orders became, how many think he is going to support punishing women for abortions and allow discrimination against gays, leads me to confidently claim that some are, maybe even many are!

          It is true that “name-calling is not debate.” However, it is NOT true that only or mainly the left does it.
          http://www.ebizmba.com/articles/political-websites

          The right has labeled liberals unpatriotic, unAmerican, baby-killers, libtards, regressives, snowflakes, and triggered (to name a few), when we’re not.

          No, we are not “wondering why [we] got Trump.” I just told you, we know why!

      • Ms. Saunders, a major problem I have is in what we think the Federal Government should do.

        Why is it un-Christian to think we, the People, should take care of one another, not we, the Federal Bureaucracy? Why is it wrong to think we, as individuals, should be more involved in our community’s welfare? Why is it wrong to think if we allow some faceless entity we toss some tax money at really removes us from our Humanity instead of displaying it?

        **

        You think me opposing Obamacare makes me an abomination … then okay. I have always thought it was both deceptive (keep your doctors and costs won’t go up) and government over-reach (control of the healthcare market). That would be me with my blinders on I guess.

        **

        I see illegal immigration being a problem. We need some serious reform and the last election brought this to the fore. I believe an actual, physical WALL is a futile and pointless pipe dream, but that’s me.

        **

        I think Islam needs to reform itself internally. Until that happens, Islam is going to be a problem wherever it is practiced. Wherever a Muslim man, or woman, can decide that instead of bettering their screw-up lives, or seeking mental health help, they can go on a jihad, kill the infidel and die in the process instead ~ thus putting an end to this ‘crappy life’ and attaining Paradise and their 72 Virgins (or whatever girls get) ~ Islam will be a problem.

        No number of moderate Imans writing fatwas will change this. The radicals don’t care. They are already killing far more Muslims for not being doctrinely pure enough in far too many places where Islam is the religion of the Land.

        Say what you will. Too many verses in the Koran and other closely associated works widely accepted by Muslims world wide support a radical interpretation.

        Westerners can’t do a dang thing about this. Only Muslims can do this … and it is going to be a bloody freaking affair when it happens – as long as it takes. Until then, there is ZERO reason for terror attacks to stop happening.

        The nationalities and backgrounds of the attackers over the past twenty years bear out my views. Whether they are born in the West, or in a war zone, they will keep coming and coming until the ideology which allows that mindset is dealt with. Pretending things are any other way … is putting your blinders on.

        **

        People have become disengaged from our governing process. 48% of our voting populace either didn’t want to vote, or couldn’t be bothered to, in the last Presidential Election … and that is so wrong. Neither Trump nor Hillary won any true majority. At best, Hillary won largest minority of the vote which is a hardly ringing endorsement for a Hillary Clinton Mandate.

        **

        {Theoretical ramblings}

        If you want to reform the Electoral College then okay. Try what Nebraska does: assign a vote per Congressional District and proportional appropriation for the remaining two votes.

        If you want do do away with the Electoral College, please recall you are trying to remove a fundamental underpinning the Constitution and what makes a Federal System, not a Unitary one. The small states aren’t going to like that.

        Now, if you could somehow remove any Federal incentives to our citizenry (fat chance of that happening, I know), then a direct vote might seem more attractive. When those in the Federal government can effectively ‘buy’ votes through various entitlements, the process can appear corrupt … and then we are screwed.

        Those voters who profit from the entitlements vote to keep the money spigot flowing … the taxpayers become outnumbered by the entitled … blah, blah, blah … Libertarian Nightmare Scenario … hopefully you get my point.

        • James Dosher, we are not a monarchy so from the elected local board to the White House and Congress, we elect our government, therefore it is “us.” The Preamble to the US Constitution explains what the government was instituted to do: “We the people of the United States, in Order to form a more perfect Union, establish Justice, insure domestic Tranquility, provide for the common defence, promote the general Welfare, and secure the Blessings of Liberty to ourselves and our Posterity, do ordain and establish this Constitution for the United States of America.”

          Why anyone decides that means the government has no place in our charity or opportunity does not seem logical to me.

          If “we, as individuals” could take care of each other, I am not sure we all would and clearly churches and aid groups cannot meet the need we have. Just like we cannot as individuals build roads, bridges, dams or train tracks.

          We CAN all be as “involved in our community’s welfare” as we want, but it is not going to be enough.

          Our government is not “some faceless entity” (though many charities are). And NOTHING about government programs absolves any of us from displaying our own humanity to people around us.

          I did not say or imply that you “opposing Obamacare makes [you] an abomination”, do try to be honest.

          Where did I say that “illegal immigration” was not a problem? Is this strawman crap really indicative of how you interact? I agree that we need reform and have needed it for decades while Congress dithered. Never said otherwise. But it has to be fair, humane and not allow business to profit from workers we despise and deport and it cannot be that only those with money can come here!

          Regardless of what you or I “think,” Islam will do what Muslims determine to do, but any fool knows that 1.2 BILLION Muslims are not at war with America.

          I disagree that “Islam is going to be a problem wherever it is practiced.” Ignorance, bigotry and lack of human decency is all that keeps many more Muslims from showing us the beauty of their religion and their faith. Many simply do not want to give them any chance. In a nation supposedly founded on religious freedom that is the height of hypocrisy. And you certainly showed your own ignorance of Islam with a false, insulting, bigoted explanation of the “problem.”

          Radicals in ANY religion or group “do not care” but blaming all for some is deeply unfair.

          Westerners meddling in the Middle East for centuries put this target on us. And no, it is not just up to Muslims to fight terrorists or radicals any more than it is just up to Christians to fight them here.

          Given the many mass shootings and events in this nation, I disagree that “The nationalities and backgrounds of the attackers over the past twenty years bear out [your] views.” On any given day, we are just as likely to be killed by a red-blooded ‘murican than any kind of Muslim. There are MILLIONS of Muslims in this country, have there been a million attacks? I “love” how those of you who hate having the broad brush applied will happily do that to others.

          Of course people have “become disengaged from our governing process.” Many have figured out that 1 person cannot represent 950,000 in a Congressional District so 1 person cannot represent 300 million in the White House. Unlike many before him though, Trump is not even trying to act like he is trying to.

          People cannot be shamed into voting or apparently shamed out of voting for someone like Trump. That is their choice.

          Not that Trump has the decency to acknowledge the vote count, but it was hardly ringing endorsement for a Trump mandate either!

          People have been working to “reform the Electoral College” for a long time, like Constitutional Amendments, it is not easy and Wyoming likes more power than people would give it. http://www.nationalpopularvote.com/

          I disagree that it is “a fundamental underpinning” of our Constitution. James Madison (the Father of the Constitution) admitted it was as much about the slave-holding states as any other reason but he favored a national popular vote: “… The people at large was in his opinion the fittest in itself. It would be as likely as any that could be devised to produce an Executive Magistrate of distinguished Character. The people generally could only know & vote for some Citizen whose merits had rendered him an object of general attention & esteem. There was one difficulty however of a serious nature attending an immediate choice by the people. The right of suffrage was much more diffusive in the Northern than the Southern States; and the latter could have no influence in the election on the score of the Negroes. The substitution of electors obviated this difficulty and seemed on the whole to be liable to fewest objections.” Great reason to be ignoring almost 3 million more votes for any president.

          Those voters who profit from the tax breaks, government contracts, and influence spend FAR MORE money seeking the election of their candidates than any who receive “entitlements” Unless you think 65 million Clinton voters are on the dole and 62 million Trump voters are not…

          • Except we decided to NOT make our government solely dependent on the popular vote. Precisely 1/2 of the three branches of our government is elected so ~ the H. or R.

            The Senate is two votes per state regardless of population and compared to the Electoral College, actually has a much bigger impact on so much more of American political life. I don’t see people wanting to get rid of the Senate.

            Still, considering how screwed up other attempts at democratic governments in other countries have been since our founding, I think we could have done a lot worse.

            **

            I’d LOVE to see solely Publicly funded elections. My note of the end of entitlements for a move to the Popular vote still implies that if ANY government could promise enough people benefits from other people’s taxes, they could swing a significant amount of the vote.

            The best way to see this in action is watch any candidate threaten Social Security Reform and watch the older vote turn out AGAINST them. Sad, but true.

            Like meaningful Campaign Finance Reform, I believe that is so much pie in the sky. Ugh.

            **

            Yes, people CAN still be involved in their community welfare – but they are not. Everyone is far too comfortable saying “the government should take care of that” then banishing the problem from their minds. We permit that laziness.

            **

            If you are cool with me opposing Obamacare then that is good news. Thank you. That is more latitude than I normally get.

            **

            Islam is not at war with the US, or the West. Islam is in a Civil War for its fundamental principles and we, and Muslims across the globe, are caught in the cross-fire.

            Radicals want to formulate this as a War between Islam and the West so they, in a handful of attacks, kill Westerners in the West. Again, compared to the thousands they kill in their homelands, its a drop in the bucket.

            The problem is we in the West should not have to tolerate these attacks. We have the right to defend ourselves, our people, our faith and our culture.

            **

            Meddling in the Middle East … where do you want the line chronologically and geographically?

            The Ottoman Empire declared war on Russia thus putting them at war with France and England in World War I. What precisely was going to be the effect of that if they lost?

            The Western European Powers were meddling with Middle Eastern affairs before then … where do you want to draw the line? Didn’t the Ottoman Empire meddle in Western European affairs ~ allying with France against other European Powers in the 16th century? Shall we go farther back, or farther forward?

            The Crusades of the 11th through 15th centuries? Well, wasn’t the Christian Eastern Roman Empire there first before the Arab Islamic invasions of the 7th century?

            The Empire of Darius, or the Empire of Alexander?

            The Middle East has been a crossroads of trade for thousands of years and continues to be. Expecting other nations to not have a stake in what is going on there is highly unrealistic. Even without the oil, we have the existence of Israel and Palestine.

            People tend to forget the Land of the Two Rivers is either the heart of an empire, or is invaded by them. As ISIS proved recently the border between Syria and Iraq is a line in the sand and nothing more. Earlier, Iraq took a try at Iran and failed. Iran is proving to not be a dormant power and that bodes ill for those beyond the Iranian Plateau … because it ALWAYS has.

            And if the Jewish State is scared it is because they should be. By listening to both modern rhetoric and ancient history, they know they are sandwiched between Egypt to the south and whatever powers roll across the Tigris & Euphrates from the northeast, or down from Anatolia to the north.

            How are we not supposed to get involved?

            • James D, I am well aware of the compromise with the Southern states, which is why I quoted Madison. That does not mean that we have stayed true to what the Founders intended or that we actually have anything resembling a representative government. Not to mention they also have the power of the gerrymander and voter suppression and have never been shy in using them.

              Sure the House chamber is elected; one person can “represent” 500,000 and another can “represent” 1,000,000. Sure seems “representative” doesn’t it? The original Constitution set a maximum of 30,000 to one. But who decided on only 435 no matter our population?

              Yes, the Senate is elected and a state of just over 500,000 has the same number as a state of 39,000,000. Sure seems “representative” doesn’t it? We cannot get rid of the Senate, but we can be honest how unfair and disproportional our “representation” is.

              The Electoral College, where now 5 elections have installed the person who lost the popular vote, is going to continue to be a bone of contention. Trump did so in 2012 when he thought they cheated Romney. His tweets are telling. Needless to say he loves the EC now.

              I will not disparage other nations who strive for proportional representation. I consider that the superior method in any democracy.

              You still will not admit that those at the taxpayer teat are far more than just those receiving “entitlements”, but they are the only ones you see fit to criticize.

              Our government does promise and provide enough people money from other people’s taxes, and it is not just “benefits”. And they do swing a significant amount of the vote, but not just those “on the dole” it is just not a problem of “entitlements.” It is clearly just the one you hold in disdain.

              Whatever you think some president could promise with the popular vote, what can actually be done is still not so much. Money has much more power than many want to admit. But sure, insist that people will only vote their own pocketbook to claim otherwise.

              No one should “threaten Social Security Reform” that is a pact made and one we need to keep. And “the older vote” has as much right to turn out as any other demographic. Oddly though, they would not be the ones affected…

              Until Congress gets serious about cutting their own funding streams there will be no “meaningful Campaign Finance Reform.” Where is the incentive for them to do so?

              Precisely because “people CAN still be involved in their community welfare – but they are not” we have to create the state and federal programs to do so. It is not that “Everyone is far too comfortable saying “the government should take care of that,” so much as our history proving that the government, which is us, should. You call it “laziness” but we all work to fund it.

              I am only “cool” with those opposing Obamacare if they have a better plan and so far, I have not seen it.

              Radicals always want to formulate friction if not outright war. Do you live in the South? Many are still fighting the Civil War here. We have nationalists, white supremacists, survivalists, anarchists, anti-whatever constantly fomenting that friction here.

              I do not think Muslims have seen this as a War between Islam and the West, but they likely will going forward. That means it will all get worse before it gets better. They have been at this for centuries, they know how to attack. But not embracing the peaceful, America loving Muslims will always be a mistake.

              I am sorry but I do not see how you can claim “we in the West should not have to tolerate these attacks.” With the seeming exception of Russia, do we just tolerate meddling in our nation? Sure, we “have the right to defend ourselves, our people, our faith and our culture.” But we cannot deny there is a reason that zealots in the Middle East hate our actions, therefore us. Right or wrong, terrorism is an effect of our actions and choices and it does not have to go back to the Ottoman Empire to make the case against us.

              You can call them as “unrealistic” as you like, zealots do not care.

            • There is one problem that we never had to face before, the real possibly of the death of billions of people from a limited nuclear war between Iran and Israel. Sure, for eons the empires have come and gone, destroying themselves or being destroyed in the process. Mass murder via war was and is common place in that region. As tragic as that is that hasn’t changed.

              What has changed is that an exchange of a hundred or so nuclear bombs will cause 3 to 5 year famine all over the world and we are quickly approaching a time when this is a possibility in the Middle East, similar to what is possible with an India/Pakistan war. We disengage with the Middle East at our peril!

    • James Dosher, man what an amazing response to the all the bull crap from John! None of his worshippers/disciples would dare challenge him in this manner. Man, thanks a million!

    • JD. yeah i agree.

      –except for one thing. i think that ‘ unsustainable Fantasy Land’ will not die. It’s still …. “home-sweet-home” for Master Legislator Pelosi, Ossoff & now Obama (again).

  17. “We’d elected an incompetent, immoral monster to lead our nation, one who’s trampled on nearly every marginalized community and every sacred inch of our Constitution and bastardized our shared faith tradition—but I was the problem they were having. My volume was an issue. That was unnerving to them. That was a moral quandary. Chastising me was the one bit of activism they could muster up.”

    Well there you go. There’s the answer to your question.

    You are entitled to your opinion. Your “white” friends are entitled to theirs, but not without your laying on them a smug and condescending guilt trip for having the nerve to think and believe differently, and for not accepting your OPINIONS as if they are decrees from god almighty.

    Their “problem,” Mr. Better Than Those Other Whites, is not that your version of the “truth” hurts so much, but rather that you can’t see the trees through the forest and are being a sanctimonious ass and they don’t want to deal with it anymore.

    Your disappearing white friends and acquaintances will probably reappear when you stop insulting them and implying they are stupid or evil for voting according to their consciences and for what they believed was best for our country. It would also be a good idea to go back to real Christian doctrine instead of worshiping according to liberal Democrat pro-abortion policies.

    BTW, what is it that your wayward white friends need to do in order to attain Heaven and avoid Hell?

    • Evidently, Alfonso, you don’t like the reflection of yourself you see in John’s words so instead of dealing with your own issues, you attack the messenger.

      Anyone who voted GOP or third party or didn’t vote, whether they know it or not, actually voted for authoritarianism, bigotry, bisexuality phobia, discrimination, fascism, gynophobia, homophobia, intolerance of that which is different, intolerance of those who are different from one’s self, intolerance of those who disagree with one’s self, intolerance of an informed disagreement, isolationism, misogyny, prejudice, racism, rape, sexual assault/molestation, transgenderphobia, white supremacy, and xenophobia.

      • Yes Joe of the hundred IPs, sure you did. You are innocent because you just wanted Trump to force incubation instead of asking America to do any really hard work to stop abortion.

    • “what is it that your wayward white friends need to do in order to attain Heaven and avoid Hell?”

      …and there’s the problem. Blindly buying into what the church wants you to believe.

    • My man, Alfonso, you kicccccked John’s raw ass in your response to him! You and James really do have the balls to challenge this stupid little man and his cronies. He really believes that his words are the words of Jesus, when in fact, Satan is his real inspiratory. Thanks a million for speaking with profound intelligence and class to a complete asshole!

  18. I felt this was worthy of an addendum:

    Philando Castile has what to do with today’s message exactly? His life was cut tragically short. A jury of twelve men and women found former-Officer Jeronimo Yanez innocent ON ALL CHARGES. By all means, assume in 2017, the American judicial system of trusting twelve of our citizens is biased and unfair.

    Passions demanded an Pound of Flesh. 12 sane minds decided on innocence ~ a terrible mistake was made in a brief few seconds. 2 other lives were intimately damaged. Parents lost a child. So much which cannot be taken back … but it DID NOT rise to the level of felonious intent in the minds of those 12 people we trusted to navigate the law and deliver justice.

    It definitely didn’t make a lot of people happy. Thankfully that isn’t the purpose of our Justice System. When a police officer is involved, it is complicated as we empower law enforcement to dispense violence in our names. When a minority member is a victim, the complications increase.

    It couldn’t have been an easy case for those jurors. Yet, if we stop trusting them, what hope is there for anything?

    **

    Nabra Hassanen is another life ended tragically unfulfilled and terminated with brutality. Darwin Martinez Torres beat her to death with a baseball bat. As of now, it doesn’t look like a Hate Crime. Instead, Mr. Torres had an argument with a guy in the group Ms. Hassanen was walking with. The group ran.

    Later, Mr. Torres encountered the group again and again the group ran. This time Mr. Torres exited his car with a baseball bat. Ms. Hassanen stumbled and fell. Mr. Torres caught up with her and hit her, rendering her incapable of defense. Her companions abandoned her, not realizing she hadn’t escaped until they made a head count at the Mosque.

    Only then were the police called. By then Mr. Torres had driven elsewhere and beaten Ms. Hassanen to death and dumped her body in a pond. It was not a Hate Crime (only in that she wasn’t particularly singled out because she was Muslim, or a girl, not that murder isn’t hateful). If the autopsy reveals sexual assault, they are looking at a possible Death Penalty case.

    What I don’t hear less about is the fact Darwin Martinez Torres was a 22 year old citizen of El Salvador in this country illegally … and Fairfax County, Virginia is a Sanctuary County. They don’t call themselves that, but they don’t let police officers ask for anyone’s immigration status either so even if you have no ID, or a fake ID, they won’t detain you, or report you … so basically IT IS a Sanctuary County, but they won’t use the word ‘sanctuary’ because of federal funding issues.

    So it is “let’s talk about Nabra Hassanen, the poor, murdered Muslim girl”, but no mention of Darwin Martinez Torres, “the illegal immigrant who brutally murdered a young American girl”?

    Gosh, pity she wasn’t killed by a White guy wearing a Trump ‘Make America Great Again’ hat while singing SS marching songs … because that would have been so much more part of the narrative …

    Instead of a young woman being killed by an illegal immigrant in a place in America the police couldn’t have removed him from because HER local, Democratic Party government wouldn’t allow them to check his immigration status because while her leaders were stumbling over themselves to feel all moral and welcoming, they allowed a monster in their midst and that monster stole her life away …

    • Mr. Dosher, I hope you and your family are doing well.

      I am not here to rebut your views on your politics. We have both posted many times of our own views and accept that it will not change.

      My question is of the “which came first – the chicken or the egg” variety.

      I was born and raised in California – surrounded by farm lands. We always had field workers. As a matter of fact my mother and her sisters were farm workers but born here in the US. As years went on farmers learned that they could get away with paying low wages to workers while putting more money in their pockets and avoiding those nasty taxes. Word does spread and more and more “workers” came here illegally.

      There is now a whole level of “workers” both born here and illegally here working for cash – on construction sites, in the fields, maids, nanny’s, servants, cleaning ladies, handymen. I would imagine many do come here to just cause trouble but I am pretty sure we have natural born citizens who are capable of causing trouble. Every brutal death is horrific.

      So, in your opinion, which came first, illegals coming here or those being ok with breaking the law in order to put more money in their pocket?

      I believe at this point we do understand that many prices will start rising faster if they are able to stop this cycle. Do you feel that employers who break the law will face punishment or just the workers?

      Peace

      • We should punish those who employ illegal immigrants harsher than we do the illegal immigrants because those who are hiring the illegal immigrants are creating the problem, not the illegal immigrants.

        No jobs means minimal reason to immigrate. Sure there will be political reasons ~ such as the whole mess which is MS-13 in El Salvador which we exported from the US to that country – there are people, often young women, who need to escape the death threats which all to often become Missing Persons in unmarked graves.

        Then we can create both a permanent and temporary labor market which can be both sustained and protected. Then we don’t have to worry about illegal immigrants putting up with predations from workplace and criminal sources. They are protected by both US agencies and their own Embassies without fear of deportation.

        Prices will go up … but that is worth ending the human cost of leaving millions of people in America in a legal limbo, constantly in danger of losing what they have, in some cases, worked on for decades.

        Only by going after the firms and people who create the illegal marketplace can we protect the people involved and get an accurate idea of what the marketplace actually is.

        **

        I came to this way of thinking after talking with a friend who had worked with asbestos removal in Norfolk and Newport News, Va. The majority of the crew were Guatemalans. Every time the had an absence, the Guatemalans would arrange for another ‘friend, or family member’ to arrive.

        It was difficult, hot, dangerous and uncomfortable work for a low wage … so it was difficult to get Americans to get the job. So the employer turned a ‘blind eye’ to the hiring of illegals. In reality, the employer took the money they made from the contract and pocketed most of the money ear-marked for salaries … plus, when they got hurt, they didn’t want to go to the hospital.

        **

        Personally, I worked in the tobacco fields of eastern North Carolina for 4 years and I can attest the major thing I learned was I didn’t want to work on a farm the rest of my life. That is some hard, back-breaking work for a pittance.

        **

        Unless we crackdown hard on the employers, you can’t truly blame the illegal immigrants for crossing the border, looking for those job offers. We need to make some serious examples and play hardball with the people who are truly responsible for this problem – the employers.

        • Mr. Dosher, thank you for your response. Do you think that employers WILL be punished?

          Did you really bring up the decades old polishing of the knob. You are a man of words and you resorted to that?

          In the first place, Trump has said if you need a Viagra you are with the wrong woman. Trump does not look healthy and he is older so I would think there would be less of chance for him to accomplish that feat. But then what do I know? Money can buy lots of help.

          You are a published author but I don’t know if you have been interviewed but Trump’s claim to fame was getting his face and voice out there to rate women by the number, call a woman a piece of ass, and brag that his personal Viet Nam was avoiding STD’s. That was no “locker room talk”.

          You have a daughter – would you take her with you to an interview with Howard Stern and tell him it is ok to call his daughter a piece of ass? There are plenty of interviews out there with Trump and his daughter and him talking about sex and her with that weird little laugh. When you talk to your daughter to you put your hands on the side of her hips or do you hug her around the waist or shoulders in a full body hug like I have seen most fathers do. Would you go on “Lives of the Rich and Famous” and when asked what he thought his 1 year old daughter (Tiffany) inherited from her parents and respond with Marla’s legs cupping his hands under his chest while saying we don’t know if she’s got this part yet.

          I will stop as there are too many more. Has he ever shown any respect for anyone beside Ivanka? Can we all remember his inauguration as he is walking up the White House steps while his wife has to get out of the car on her own and walk around the car and walk up the steps by herself? He has the manners of a goat in my opinion. That is probably not fair to the goat but I could not come up with another name.

          Sorry the old “knob” excuse, while disturbing does not excuse Trumps behavior his whole adult life. That this person has even the tiniest voice of issues that effect woman makes me want to howl at the moon. You obviously touched a nerve. I will stop now.

          Peace Mr. Dosher

          • Ms. Mutso, the wife is telling me to let this go as well.

            Thank you.

            I believe the problem of illegal immigration CANNOT be addressed unless we go after the employers. Anything else is shining us all with false promises and outright lies.

            Peace be with you as well.

            • Mr. Dosher, thank you for your response. I agree with everything you said about this issue. This practice has been met with a wink and a nod for decades – possibly because of the resulting increase in prices. Now that immigration has been made such a political issue it doesn’t make sense to overlook one of its major causes and also the effect it will make on the consumer.

              May I say you and your wife are the greatest team. Also, for giggles this is the second time since I have been on this blog you have typed Ms. Mutso so I will say again I wouldn’t mind at all if you changed that M to an N. Ms. Nutso just sounds better somehow. Just kidding either way is fine.

              A part of me is sorry I will miss your rebuttal to what I see as trying to compare an overused apple to 50 years of lemons. But I am sure your wife is a wise person.

              Peace Mr. Dosher and I was happy to hear that your writer’s block had ended especially if it was causing you stress.

    • Wow James Dosher, you should get that projection looked at, it is oozing and likely infected! We come here to read his thoughts, not your fetid offerings.

      He told you flat out what Philando Castile and Nabra Hassanen had to do with his point. That they (and many other minority deaths) would not be mentioned by pastors in those lovely bastions of Christian love and concern on Sunday morning. He was not making any claims beyond that about either death.

      The issue appears to have gone right over your head, but many in this nation are roiling over these continued deaths and the outrage that goes unacknowledged (with the exception of the community it happens in).

      You clearly feel a jury verdict should mean we all shut up and go home but that would likely put the Supreme Court out of business and it is not how we have formed opinions on justice in our 241 years. And, news flash, juries DO sometimes get it wrong! How many people have been freed after decades in prison thanks to a jury?

      Clearly you think Nabra Hassanen’s cruel death could not have happened if that rage-filled man had not been an illegal immigrant, which is also a lie as it happens all too often in this nation and is quite often two “red-blooded ‘muricans” trying to kill each other or preying on a fellow “red-blooded ‘murican.”

      Seriously, get that looked at!

      • The tragedy of Mr. Castile’s death was worthy of mention. Were the results of former-Officer Yanez trial also worthy of mention? A man was found innocent ON ALL CHARGES. Is that to be proclaimed from the pulpit? To what end?

        By all means, a minority officer shot and killed a minority civilian in a stop over a broken brake light. What is the message here? Better yet, let’s stack this message in with White Christians turning away from Pastor John’s view of Jesus’ message why don’t we. That will certainly spread love and goodwill. {sarcasm}

        I ABSOLUTELY agree juries can and do get it wrong. I, having not seen the evidence provided to them, and having no reason to believe they were overly spiteful, racist, or moronic, put my faith in 12 citizens to do the job as presented to them.

        Hell yeah, I know people were disappointed.

        Hell yeah, it looked freaking hinkey to me too from what I saw and was able to read about after the incident. I pretty much believed a police officer freaked out and shot a Black man AFTER that Black man did his due diligence by informing that officer he had a licensed firearm in the car with him. I kind of go for the 2nd Amendment that way.

        Had I been on that jury, I would have been a hard sell, that’s for damn sure.

        Yet, I choose to put faith in my fellow citizens they were presented with enough evidence they acquitted Yanez on all three counts. It wasn’t a hung jury. All twelve agreed on the outcome of all three charges and they voted for innocence.

        This was NOT Selma, Alabama in 1965 with 12 White men excusing a White KKK member for killing a Black man for … stealing a chicken, or some other such bull-s**t.

        Now, if you are aware of some external pressure brought to bare against those jurors, or some bias they, as a group, would have had, please let the whole freaking globe know about it. Until then …

        **

        No, Nabra Hassanen could have been killed by virtually any nationality, or gender. Beyond her senseless death, two things bothered me.

        One, that so many young men abandoned her. This has nothing to do with anything except their gender with me. I expected more of males of the species. It is the way I was raised. As a group, the young men should have shielded the women as best they could. They were a largest enough group and old enough to make a difference.

        If it matters ~ yes, I have gotten the ever-living crap beaten out of me rushing to another’s defense. I’d do it again. I’ve rushed to another’s defense and kicked other people’s ass too. I wasn’t too bright in my youth.

        Two, was the rush by the community lawyer to declare this a Hate Crime even when the police were already reporting facts contrary to her narrative. It HAD to be a Hate Crime.

        **

        No. It turned out to be a freaking animal. The animal just so happened to also be an illegal alien. Everything suggests he didn’t know Ms. Hassanen. He got in an argument with a young man in her group then pursued her group and when she stumbled, he fell upon her and beat her with a baseball bat. He may have sexually assaulted her. He beat her to death then dumped her body in a pond. He is nothing more than an animal in my mind because of the choices he made in less than one hour in his life which have nothing to do with his legal status, or nation of origin.

        **

        My personal theory is that due to his behavior and nation of origin Mr. Torres may be a member of MS-13 because they are particularly violent, from El Salvador and very active in the DC Metro area. You would think an undocumented alien holding down some crappy job would want to avoid altercations at all cost.

        There is no report of Mr. Torres being drunk, or on drugs. On the other hand, if Mr. Torres, for whatever reason, thought those teens ‘disrespected’ him, he might well have lashed out violently at the closest target of opportunity and was grabbed by the police before he could get to some gang safe house.

        Again, this is merely a theory. I ended up doing some research on MS-13 when writing a story about Las Vegas. That led me to the huge case of illegals fleeing the gang war in El Salvador because of the death threats leveled on girls and their families. The US doesn’t want to recognized it is the root of the MS-13 problem and give those people Political Asylum … so deportation equals death.

        Horrible F-ing World we live in.

        • James D, this is where I use my line: When you don’t get it, you do so in neon!

          First, I am not sure why you presume that John P’s efforts here are to “spread love and goodwill.” It is clear to me that ship sailed long ago and all he is doing now is sharing his pain, confusion, frustration and questions with folks in his blog.

          Clearly many agree with him and feel some or all of what he feels, see some or all of what he sees and want some or all of what he wants. If you don’t, I will repeat my other line: Why do you come here? Is it some contrarian thing to find a blog you disagree with and try to take it over, redirect the conversation, dismiss their opinion, demean their effort?

          I will never understand what motivates people to come here and “take him on”. The number of bloggers and subjects I disagree with is long…I could go there as a full time job, BUT I do not go there. I do not engage them, try to change their POV, dispute what they say or demean their supporters. This whole concept is foreign to my psyche.

          Lastly, and again, John P did not mention either death as any referendum on or discussion of them. He could have chosen other deaths or issues in the news because his point was that few if any white Christian churches would even mention them AND that most would react as you did just at the mention of their names. You proved his point, you did not refute it.

          • If you don’t view the world as a racist and sexist nightmare, why would those two incidents in particularly bring notice from the pulpit?

            A young girl was murdered.

            A young man was acquitted of murder.

            I am sure if you want so score political points, you can. If you want do delve into human tragedy, you can.

            Oh look ~ the American Justice System is all screwed up. A police officer got away with shooting to death a cooperating minority. RACISM.

            Oh look ~ the US Immigration System is screwed up. An illegal alien murdered a helpless teenage girl. BIGOTRY.

            Oh look ~ a Muslim was murdered on an American street while celebrating Ramadan. INTOLERANCE.

            Oh look ~ a young woman was beaten to death by an irrationally incensed man. MISOGYNY.

            By all means, we can spin those deaths for a particular political narrative. Or maybe not.

            • James Dosher, still in neon. It happens when you have nothing but want so desperately to act like you do. I get it. I do.

  19. God Does not care about , color, skin, race, group, or others,
    ONly one thing ,
    Complete loyalty to Him, ONLY him , Jesus Christ, Gods Son , Savior to all who believe and follow Him.
    The ones you speak of here are in the sifting of the wheat from the chaff.
    God Know s those who belong. and no matter what you or any other believe . He is still in control
    All knowing, All Mighty, All powerful
    Dont take Grace for Stupidity or Because you dont understand does not mean he s not there .
    He is , Always will be , and forever.

  20. It’s not white Christians; it’s very conservative Christians. As a former Fundamentalist, I clearly heard the dog whistles from Trump. As one who has followed Trump since the 80s, I knew it was all a con.

    • Sheila, the majority of people who voted for Trump and the GOP are white evangelicals. Google the demographics.

        • leslie m, the ignorance displayed in this statement is breathtaking. You wrote “The majority of those that voted for Hillary are white.”

          So what? What’s your point? The majority of registered voters in the USA are white so that the majority of H’s voters were white is simply not significant.

          That the majority of voters for the GOP are white, evangelical males is significant.

  21. Right on! I would only ad that there are no white Christians. Jesus was dark skinned and if you really study the original language it will tell you that white people can’t be Christians. I am with you brother. I am brown, but judging from you picture you may need to check and see if you may fall into the condemned white. I hope not, because you are a good writer. Edgar

    • What? Wow … this is a breath of … I won’t say ‘fresh’ air, but definitely different. Hmmm … no White Christians? Well Mr. Edgar, what happens to all White People then? I’m curious to know.

      I do agree Jesus wasn’t Caucasian. He was Semitic.

      Of course, if you are right, there are a truckload of books in the New Testament which make no sense. All the epistles of Paul to all those Greeks and Romans … all those White folks … just screwed I guess … because those folks were definitely White by the 1st century CE.

      Does this mean only Semitic Peoples were/are saved? What about the others … Asians, Africans, Aboriginal Australians and Americans. That would seem to be a whole lot of continents full of people who missed the boat.

      What about those American Aboriginals converted by the White folks who thought they were Christians … when they weren’t slaughtering them, or giving them diseases? Were they truly converted, or do those conversions not count thus all those Natives being sent off to Hell as well?

      Also, what about mixed-race people? How much White in you causes you not be excluded from your Christian community? Is there some DNA test which people need to take, or does the Holy Spirit know his/her own?

      What if your are actually mixed, but you are unaware of it ~ say you look as Black as any Angolan? Do you still end up getting denied Heaven? Is there a way people can find this out ahead of time so if they are among the Damned, they might as well make the most of this life?

      Thank you in advance. I’ve got some non-White friends this could really help.

  22. Thank you once again for your voice and your courage to speak your truth. A truth that many of us hold. Makes one feel less alone and helpless. Peace and Love,

  23. John I can hear in the tone of this that you are heartbroken with the rejection of standing against something so unspeakably wrong, I don’t know what to say to you except, you have been a voice that has spoken for me. I am white and a christian in the sense of loving passionately GOD/JESUS/HOLY SPIRIT. I no longer attend church. I just pray to a most loving and supportive God and I try to take care of orphans and widows http://www.drlynnandtheorphans.com and I worship with a few people occasionally and I pray that JESUS returns very soon (any day would be great) Please know that though we have never met, nor broken bread under a roof together I am most thankful for you and your heart. God Bless you John. Never forget you are loved

    • Dr. Lynn Schriner, thank you so much for actually seeing the pain and heartache that John is pouring out here. Those of us also hurting see it so clearly but most just assume he is yelling and angry (both symptoms of heartache) and dismiss his (and our) pain. You can tell that in the many times they tell him that he just needs to get over it, go back to “saving souls” and accepting the Christian Right Party in the church. It means a lot to John P’s supporters when someone actually gets it.

      Thank you and bless you as you navigate these uncertain and troubled waters as well!

    • Dr Lynn Schriner, welcome and thanks for joining us. Thanks so much for being one who hears the Christian message that John P speaks.

      I personally believe he has the gift of exhortation which he speaks with a prophetic voice just as the prophets of the Hebrew Scriptures do.

      As for your website: I LOVE what you are doing.

  24. I have found many especially Evangelist Christians to be very sectarian. One in particular never hardly acknowledges when I say hello and his numerous children see to have taken the same guarded approach to “non-members”. I cannot practice a faith like this but prefer to offer my prayers alone

  25. Tony J Griffin wrote “One in particular never hardly acknowledges when I say hello and his numerous children see to have taken the same guarded approach to “non-members”.

    I am of the opinion that many of the evangelical and fundamentalist groups are actually cults, especially when they are non-denominational and have no larger authority structure to hold them accountable. But even when they are connected to other churches of the same name around the country, there is still no accountability.

    The heresy of the prosperity gospel is rampant in these cults and, in my opinion, is the surefire indicator that it is a cult. Another one is the lack of regard for the non-members. When one has to affirm a party line, that is another indicator of a cult.

  26. Dr Lynn Schriner, the person addressing you as “Joe Catholic” has been banned from this blog many many times as a troll who has told us he is here to upset people and to destroy John P’s blog.

    I encourage and hope you will ignore him as he is trying to bait you.

  27. Mr. Pavlovitz, I came upon this blog post from a friend’s sharing of it on Facebook, and upon reading it was struck by your motto, “stuff that needs to be said.” I assure you that in that regard you need not worry. Far from a unique point of view in danger of being squelched by our “monster” of a President, one whose opponents regularly implore us to “resist” (as if this was Vichy), your view of Donald Trump is ubiquitous throughout the American mainstream media. So much so that one might be forgiven for mistaking the monotone hysterics against Mr. Trump for something more closely resembling the party line of the Pravda of old, and far removed from the diversity of opinion once proudly celebrated in America’s free press.
    To this first-time reader, your “stuff that needs to be said” seems to have less in common with Christianity and more to do with today’s politically-correct leftism, as typified by the atheist Bernie. Your tone is, sadly, consistent with the ugly lynch mob of depressingly popular opinion, apparently incapable of recognizing any humanity in the man whom we the American people freely elected as our President. Your plea for greater sympathy to America’s “marginalized” groups rings hollow in its casual use of the word “racist” to describe recent cabinet appointments, and no doubt the reaction of those of us put off by demands of the so-called LGBT community brands us as “homophobes.” Goodness knows where abortion figures into all of this (I’ve never read your blog before, so feel free to correct me if I’m wrong).
    So please–as fruitless as this plea may prove to be–consider that this new President is more than what his style unfortunately conveys to some people. If anything, he is proving to be a mainstream politician with the one exception of immigration, in which his point of view is one that was held by most of his predecessors: that of a nation with a right to control its borders. Not a Tower of Babel, or a Salvation Army home to the rest of the world. Iin the the dictionary definition of the word “nation” you will find it consists of specific characteristics held in common, primarily those of culture, language, a land mass and an economic system. This is no longer “your father’s” immigration, but instead something now celebrated in many quarters as a replacement of America’s traditional population with a new one. Quotes from Bill Clinton, G.W. Bush, Joe Biden, and William Kristol, among others, are readily available.

    • Jim Smith, welcome. You say you are a first time reader yet you wrote “To this first-time reader, your “stuff that needs to be said” seems to have less in common with Christianity and more to do with today’s politically-correct leftism, as typified by the atheist Bernie. ”

      Personally, I would have preferred had you invested some time reading more or John P’s blog before judging him so harshly.

      • Thanks for your comment, Gloriamarie A., but I hope you can recognize how I found the language of Mr. Pavlovitz more than harsh–simply put, it’s over the top, particularly for someone who appears to have a reputation for thoughtfulness and understanding. “Monster, racist, immoral, ghoulish…trampling on nearly every sacred inch of our Constitution.” It’s very easy to draw at least tentative conclusions about the person using such language, especially when we’re talking what I might have thought were differences of opinion, but apparently I am naive–these are differences between good and evil! As one who voted for Mr. Trump, this isn’t quite the introduction to someone whose writings I would be tempted to pursue further, but, as I noted, if I am wrong, I stand open to correction.

        • Well, if you prefer to blame the messenger for writing the truth, then maybe you won’t want to read this blog. John writes as the Holy Spirit leads him to write.

          However, once again I recommend that read a variety of the things John P wrote.

          Or perhaps you dislike the reflection of yourself that you see in John P’s words.

          • It doesn’t appear as though you offer much of a dialogue. Rather than addressing my point, you’ve put things in very simple form: you’re wrong, John P. is right. You’re of course free to accept Mr. Pavlovitz’s view of things, but I back off when someone tells me this is The Truth. Period. I’m doubtful if even Mr. Pavlovitz is as convinced as you are.

            • What is there to dialog about? You’ve read one post by John P and have been harsh in your judgment.

              All I am saying is that you can’t possibly have enough information on which to base this opinion and I suggested that you seek further information.

              I am not arguing with you. I am expressing an opinion. I’ve been reading this blog for about a year now and you’ve read one post. Which one of us, do you think, might be better qualified to speak about what kind of person John P is?

                • What “points” you claim to have made are based on insufficient information.

                  If you are going to insist on making “points” based on only reading one of John’s essays, then you haven’t sufficient education to form an opinion.

                  Sorry to be so blunt. I didn’t want to go there. But until you read more essays, you have nothing upon which to have an informed opinion.

            • Jim Smith, you said you, “back off when someone tells me this is The Truth. Period.” Yet you told us you voted for Trump. That is his entire campaign and style of governance in a nutshell.

              • Sandi Saunders: I know many people who voted for Donald Trump and few fit the words you’ve quoted. Maybe I’m in my own “bubble” of sorts, but the people I know, mostly friends and members of a chat room which I’ve been part of for the past twenty years, are well aware of the flaws of the candidate we voted for. I am conservative and have had to make my compromises on issues where I simply didn’t agree with him. We knew we weren’t going to get “perfect,” but we also knew that the alternative was unthinkable. And on the immigration issue–the main reason for my support–Mr. Trump spoke with a passion that was lacking in the other candidates for the Republican nomination. Have I been happy with everything he’s done thus far? No, but neither am I going to throw him to the wolves.

                As I said in my original post, the mainstream media speaks with one voice against Trump. They show no inclination toward objective journalism, and reporters from as rarified a news organization as the New York Times have made no bones about it. During the campaign, two newspapers endorsed him–out of hundreds. They consider Trump evil and intend to cover him in that manner. Put bluntly, he is their Hitler, and their position is what journalist would give fair coverage to a Hitler? Some very large assumptions embodied there, putting aside the offensive quality to those who disagree. Do you actually believe such “journalists” are inclined to delve into the nuances of Trump supporters? Do you read the articles coming off of the Yahoo News page, where 90% of every story, most plucked from the Washington Post and then other mainstream sources, are not just biased but literally loaded against Donald Trump?

                So again, the words I used in your quote reflect a sorry reflection of a mindset I’ve encountered here, one which, I’m somewhat relieved to say, are different from those of Mr. Pavolvitz, who in the “About” section of this site, to his credit says: “I welcome you to say what you believe needs to be said in response, knowing that ultimately the truth is somewhere in the middle. Thanks for stopping by, and for reading the musings of a flawed, passionate work in progress.” If only all of his supporters shared that attitude.

                Oddly, I would contend that, in practice, Donald Trump shares much of that view, but what too many people want to see is the bluster. He has certainly modified positions many times, both during the campaign and since the election. His style is not my style, but that was the package I accepted: not a slick, scripted politician, but a rough, shoot-from-the-hip pragmatist who is determined to right the politically-correct sickness that America has fallen into. As one writer put it, he is akin to “the man who shot Liberty Valance”–a rough character well-suited for a specific job, not some philosopher-king. Admittedly, there are risks in that formulation, but there are lots of checks and balances with the American system that, under the circumstances, make it a risk worth taking.

                • I would like to make an observation, my sense when I read your comment was that you have health care, you don’t have to worry about preexisting conditions and you are probably very comfortably well off. So it is easy for you to throw millions of people under the bus. I am not willing to do that.

        • Oh gee Jim Smith, “As one who voted for Mr. Trump,” I can well imagine nothing John P says here, nor anything any of us who agree with him say will be anything you would be “tempted to pursue further.” So look at us, already agreeing.

          In case you missed it, John P never said this blog was about things everyone else feels “need to be said.” Kinda like everyone else does not see that FOX News has ever been “fair and balanced.”

          • At the risk of agreeing again, you’re probably right. It seems as if I came to this site under some mistaken assumptions. From what I’ve seen thus far, the politically-correct liberalism that repels me is what this site is largely about, reinforcing my suspicion that it is something like a Christians for Bernie Sanders platform. We share very few of the same premises and as such I intend to fade away.

  28. Where are the Conservative White evangelical leaders? Where is John Piper, Tim Keller and others? Even Russell Moore who unforcefully said he could not vote for Trump has now gone silent. They are retreating from making public comments in droves.
    I think Rod Dreher — a conservative christian, put it best :

    “There was a time when Christian thinkers like Dreher, who writes for The American Conservative, might have prepared to fight for cultural and political control. Dreher, however, sees this as futile. “Could it be that the best way to fight the flood is to … stop fighting the flood?” he asks. “Rather than wasting energy and resources fighting unwinnable political battles, we should instead work on building communities, institutions, and networks of resistance that can outwit, outlast, and eventually overcome the occupation.” This strategic withdrawal from public life is what he calls the Benedict option.” Feb.2017

    see the Atlantic article link below: http://www.theatlantic.com/politics/archive/2017/02/benedict-option/517290/?utm_source=eb

      • I know I subscribe to Sojourners and follow Red Letter Christians.

        There is a difference between John Piper and Tony Campolo right?

        • As I have never heard of John Piper, Beamer, I can’t answer your question. As I understand it, people who like what John P has to say would like Tony Campolo but I personally have never read anything Campolo has written.

          • I have read widely and have attended more than eight different church denominations to experience their worship and search for Jesus and truth. From my observation there is some light and truth of Jesus in all of them– even the fundamentalist churches.

            I don’t agree with everything I see or hear but do think there are christians spread out in all the different denominations, despite their imperfections or error.

            • Beamer, if you are writing in response to me, then I have to tell you I have no idea how this response relates to my answer to your question about Piper and Campolo.

    • Wow Beamer, this Dreher fellow is scary in all the worst ways:

      “Nothing in this language suggests that Dreher is ready to live tolerantly alongside people with different views. If progressives wrote about the Bible as “a lot of babble about Jesus and God,” using language similar to that of the parent Dreher cites, he would be quick to cry foul against the ignorance and intolerance of the left; his language is dismissive and mocking, and he peppers in conspiratorial terms like the “LGBT agenda.” At times, it seems like the goal of the Benedict option is just as much about getting away from gay people as it is affirming the tenets of Christianity. The book seems to suggest that mere proximity to people with alternative beliefs about sexuality, and specifically LGBT people, is a threat to Christian children and families.”

      If that is indeed what the white Christian “retreat” is about, we should all get ready for the Crusades2.0

      • Sandi, I understand your concern. I tend to worry when people keep silent. The article is insightful and perhaps indicative of why certain Conservative christians are keeping silent.

  29. Republicans Are Mean
    KEVIN DRUMJUN. 22, 2017 10:25 PM

    Here’s a story for you. My mother grew up in a Republican family.1 When Herbert Hoover was on the radio, everyone listened. But later she became a Democrat. What happened?

    Well, she went off to college. But not some bleeding heart lefty bastion. She went to USC, which was even more Republican in 1950 than it is now. She didn’t get indoctrinated by a bunch of fuzzy liberal professors.

    So what caused the switch? I asked her once, and she said that during her college years she came to the conclusion that Republicans were just mean. So she became a Democrat.

    This struck me because I’ve long used the exact same word in the privacy of my own thoughts. I can write a sophisticated critique of conservative ideology as well as the next guy, but the truth is that it mostly boils down to a gut feel that Republicans are mean. I’ve never said this out loud because it sounds so kindergarten-y, but there it is. I think Republicans are mean, just like my mother did.

    But now our time has come. Donald Trump started it, with his contention that Paul Ryan’s health care bill was “mean.” Today, Barack Obama picked up the ball, writing on Facebook about the “fundamental meanness at the core of this legislation.” And then Chuck Schumer weighed in with a big red poster calling the Senate health care bill “meaner.”

    So that’s that. It’s now OK to ditch the ten-dollar words and just spit it out. Republicans are mean.

    I’ve never figured out what the deal was here. My grandfather was very much a working-class guy, an electrician for Western Union. But he hated FDR. I don’t know why.

    The weird thing about this is that I live in Orange County and I know lots of conservatives. For the most part, they aren’t mean. But put ’em together in a single political party, and it’s all torches and pitchforks.

    http://www.motherjones.com/kevin-drum/2017/06/republicans-are-mean/

  30. Jeff was demanding evidence yesterday. Here’s very damning evidence

    The Trump Administration Is Pulling a Grant From a Group That Combats Neo-Nazis
    An Obama-era program will shift its focus and dollars to groups combating Al Qaeda and ISIS.

    The Department of Homeland Security announced today that it is restarting a $10 million grant program for “Countering Violent Extremism” but will no longer fund Life After Hate, a group dedicated to countering neo-Nazis and white extremism.

    In January, before President Barack Obama left office, DHS announced it would be giving grants to Life After Hate and 30 other anti-extremist groups and law enforcement agencies, but the Trump administration suspended them before the money had been awarded. The new list of grantees announced today by Trump’s DHS includes groups that combat Al Qaeda and ISIS and leaves out organizations primarily focused on countering white supremacists and other far-right hate groups. Perhaps this should come as no surprise because, as Reuters reported in February, Trump transition officials as far back as December were debating changing the focus and name of the program from “Countering Violent Extremism” to “Countering Islamic Extremism” or “Countering Radical Islamic Extremism.” President Trump has also made it a habit to largely ignore attacks committed by anyone who doesn’t qualify as a “radical Islamic terrorist.”

    “Obviously we are disappointed in that decision,” Life After Hate co-founder and board member Tony McAlver told Mother Jones. Comprised of 50 former members of right-wing hate groups, Life After Hate has received 10 times more requests for help in the past year than in the previous five years combined, McAlver says. The organization was hoping to secure a $400,000 grant from DHS, which would have allowed Life After Hate to expand its efforts with an in-house tech team to identify and counter neo-Nazi recruitment online. “It was not to pay salaries and stuff,” McAlver says. “It was for a specific online campaign.”

    McAlver was not told by DHS why it was pulling the grant, though he speculates that “they are only going to fund things targeting ISIS and Al Qaeda.” DHS did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

    Excluding the Pulse nightclub shooting last year, far-right militants have killed more people in the United States than jihadis have. Between 2002 and 2016, according to New America, Islamists launched nine attacks that killed 45 people, while right-wing extremists struck 18 times, leaving 48 dead. Just this month, a white supremacist stabbed two people to death on a Portland commuter train after they tried to prevent him from attacking a group of women whom he believed to be Muslim.

    “It is not something to ignore,” McAlver says. “We think the need for our services is greater than ever.”

    Update: Responding to questions from Mother Jones, DHS denied that Life After Hate was excluded because of its focus on far-right extremism. “DHS used its discretion to include other factors and information when reviewing each applicant” such as whether the applicants “were viable to continue after the award period,” said DHS spokeswoman Lucy Martinez. “The program has not been altered to focus on any one type of violent extremism,” she added, maintaining that 16 projects funded by DHS “are equipped to handle all types of violent extremism, including white supremacist violent extremism.”

    http://www.motherjones.com/politics/2017/06/the-trump-administration-is-pulling-a-grant-from-a-group-that-combats-neo-nazis/

  31. Jeff, here’s evidence of Trump’s anti-gay agenda

    One year ago today, the Stonewall Inn — the birthplace of the modern Equality movement — was designated as a national monument by President Obama.

    This designation made Stonewall America’s first LGBT national park site, and recognized our movement’s protests, progress, and never-ending fight.

    But now, President Trump is reviewing Stonewall’s status as a national monument and threatening its designation.

    We can’t let Trump steamroll over LGBT history.

    Trump already erased the LGBT community from the 2020 census. He has wiped any mention of the LGBT community from the White House website. And his administration has refused to acknowledge Pride Month.

    Now, he stands to completely erase one of the most important symbols of our movement.

    We can’t let him take away the Stonewall Inn’s designation as a national monument. Losing this would be like losing a piece of our history — and we refuse to let that happen.

    So one year after the Stonewall Inn became preserved as a symbol of our movement, it’s on us to defend its very existence.

    Please add your name right away to save the Stonewall Inn:

    http://go.fightforequality.org/Save-Stonewall-Landmark-Status

    • I know Stonewall was a harbinger of gay rights movement. But the bar itself was a horrible & violent place, run by the Mafia, which used it for money laundering, moving illegal liquor, boy-prostitution, and drug trafficking.

      • Maybe I missed something, but if you use the criteria that if something bad happened in a place, then it can’t be recognized, we would have not monuments. If you look hard enough just about everywhere we have monuments or parks something bad happened. So that strikes me as a bit lame.

      • leslie m, are you always this disingenuous? It was made a national monument because it is where the gay rights movement started.

        As for the other, prove it. You make all sorts of wild accusations and never provide evidence. It’s just plain laziness on your part. Just sounds like more of your homophobia to me.

        Not one word supports your allegations: https://www.wikiwand.com/en/Stonewall_Inn

      • leslie m, I question whether the slave plantations and civil war battle sites are the best representation of what was good in America too, but that does not mean they should not be national parks or protected as historic…

    • “Joe” It goes both ways. My question is why do you keep this up and keep the animosity alive on your end and play games? Haven’t you said enough yet?

    • Here’s the way I see it Sandi. If I were “obsessed” I wouldn’t have posted just 10 posts (including) this one, of the 198 posts made so far. I would have posted more like 32 or 51 times as you and Gloriamarie have. Further, if I had had bad intentions, I would not only have posted as excessively as you and Gloriamarie have, but would have done so in mean and abusive ways, which I have not done.

      As I mentioned previously, you have a very abusive regular poster here. You say you do not agree with his abusiveness which is good but you also said that you “ignore” it which is not good. If a man is calling women “bitches” and telling others to “GFY” on a regular basis, and if he public states that he fantasizes about blowing away conservatives, then you should not “ignore” it, but should be as anxious to have him silenced as you are to silence pro-life Catholic Trump supporters. You should be reporting him to the blog host. Anything less is to give tacit support.

      I have not made such abusive posts and haven’t “stalked” anyone. Yes I figured out a way around being “banned” for now, but have posted very sparingly. I do not like that I was banned based on lies. Your friend has lied about me repeatedly and I don’t think liars and bullies should win. Yes, even though she is the victim of a million things (or so she boasts), that doesn’t mean that she can’t be an internet bully. She harasses and bullies, but I learned to ignore it as well as most of her gibberish and self-promotion. But worse, she demonizes people and has done so with me. I don’t know if it’s because of pure hatefulness and mean-spiritedness, or because of paranoia, but to see “Joe” in every poster that disagrees with JP is really weird, besides being unfair. It’s hard for me to believe that logical and fair-minded people would go along with that.

      I was very upfront about changing aliases and mostly I was changing them for fun. It wasn’t to deceive. I made it obvious by my my posting about Catholicism and my opposition to the injustice of abortion who I am. I haven’t denied “Joe” is “Alfonso.” And I never “talked to myself.” I was never multiple personalities. I do deny I am “Tumi” or anyone else who comes along who makes insulting comments out of the blue, and it doesn’t logically follow that because I deny it, then I must be them. The only posts I have made in this thread are by “Alfonso” and that’s it.

      Your shaming me about “needing help” will not work. If you had any sense and didn’t need to be in control and always have the last word you would just let me make a few posts and let it go. A few posts by a Catholic, pro-life, Trump supporter adds diversity which should be welcome.

  32. “The more I spoke, the more quiet they became. The louder I got, the more they withdrew.”

    Well John, to put it simply – people simply don’t share your world, political and theological points of view.
    I suspect, the majority of your family or friends who have “disappeared” – simply prefer avoiding confrontation with foolishness or giving the appearance of associating with someone like your self.
    Perhaps, your friends and family are trying to telling you something….

    • Sirus, perhaps you don’t your reflection in the mirror of John P’s words.

      In any event, no one is forcing you to read what he writes either.

  33. The same is true in “far left” spiritual communities. Many spiritual people are calling for peace… as in “shut up and don’t make waves, that’s not a spiritual thing to do.”

    Again, it’s hiding in oblivious white privilege.

    • Connie, I don’t have any experience with such communities, but there are entirely too many cowards out there unwilling to rock the boat and let the truth in.

    • Some people think of peace in terms of serenity, stillness or silence but peace is made though hard work,sacrificial love and reconciliation.

      I think of peace as a place we are movings towards 🙂

  34. Kathleen, Sandi and Gloriamarie I lost the thread above–

    I don’t think you are a monolith but it was a strange image to come up with. I was simply doing what Gloriamarie asked me to do and that is address the people I am responding to. Seems to me that much of what I am trying to communicate is being taken the wrong way. It’s disappointing– but hey it happens.

    I am on your side but you just can’t see it because I am not willing to go public on this blog. I can see how you will never trust me– so I should probably not comment anymore. Keep working to find and build community and hope your efforts are fruitful.

    • Beamer, I feel your frustration. I didn’t think you were addressing us as a monolith.

      I really can’t speak for Sandi, but my best guess is that she would prefer for you to respond to one person at a time.

      I also can’t speak for you, but my best guess is that you are trying to save some time by addressing ll three of us at once.

      I also understand that you want to protect your identity. Given that I have been doxed, had my identity used, had private information posted to this group, been stalked, I kinda wish I too had used an alias except I have always been an up front kinda person.

    • I wouldn’t leave if I were you. I have agreed with much you have said, and disagreed too. Same with my husband. I think the problem is that because there are a few who seem to have a meanness to them we tend to be a little hesitant and perhaps too sensitive. I will let you know whether I agree or not but as long as we have civility that should be ok. But don’t let a few bumps along the way get you. If we take it the wrong way, try saying it differently. Who knows where that would take you. Peace,

    • Beamer, I have not perceived that you were not “on our side” so I am confused again. I do not encourage anyone “to go public” on this blog or any other. ALL I have ever asked for was that folks consistently use only one name when posting. I could not care much less what name anyone chooses, I just ask that they not skip around with several. I ask that of everyone. You agreed to stick to Beamer…problem solved.

      I am not sure any of these conversations are about “trust” but rest assured I “trust” you as much as I “trust” anyone who posts here.

      None of us have said (nor I think, implied) that you, leslie m, gdd, Jeff, or some of the more active posters cannot be included in the community here. I am not looking for an echo chamber. If we cannot hash out the points we make, how do we learn about or from each other? I am confused why you feel that way. Do you want us not to answer your posts unless we totally agree with everything you said? I hope you stay, for whatever that is worth.

        • Aye, Peace.

          Beamer, I can understand a desire to step back and collect your energy and spirit, but please don’t become a stranger here. A choir is made up of many voices and is made greater & more beautiful by its variable tones, depth and volume.

          Peace be with you.

      • Sandi, thanks for your comments. I am glad I came back to read the replies– I was interested in the comment made about peace and silence and was thinking about it when I was out today.

        Of course I want responses because I think these are important topics– otherwise I wouldn’t comment. I will reflect on your comment and thanks again for being forthright. 🙂

  35. First they came for the Socialists, and I did not speak out—
    Because I was not a Socialist.

    Then they came for the Trade Unionists, and I did not speak out—
    Because I was not a Trade Unionist.

    Then they came for the Jews, and I did not speak out—
    Because I was not a Jew.

    Then they came for me—and there was no one left to speak for me.
    –MARTIN NIEMÖLLER

  36. I too have wondered where my dear Christian family and my family have gone. I have heard people say they are {praying} for me . I do not understand how loving ? kind? people can support and follow President 45. He is a incompetent, immoral and evil monster who is out to destroy everything good in our nation. Thaks for being one who stand up for what is right with anyone who does that believers or non. I do that too.Blessings!

  37. Wow this post really sums it up for me. The people I thought I knew so well voted in this monster and then went back to their lives and pay no attention to the destruction he is causing to our democracy. I have lost several family members over this and don’t think I can ever forgive them for what they have done.

  38. I just wanted to say, John, that I’m here and I’m so grateful to God that you are there doing and saying what you’re doing. I thank God for your words in my life.

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