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BREAKING NEWS:  Bishop Orama Denies UPI Report - UPDATED

Friday, September 7, 2007 • 10:35 am


In an email communication The Venerable Akintunde A. Popoola, Director of Communications for the Church of Nigeria has stated that Bishop Orama has denied making the statements attributed to him in a September 2, 2007, UPI report.  Additionally, the journalist who issued the statement has given a verbal apology for the misrepresentation and has promised to print a retraction.

Developing .........

Updates:

Living Church article here.

UPI UPDATE - The story has been pulled from the UPI link.  The following is posted at the link:

UPI distributes certain third party submissions from official government news agencies, such as this article. Since UPI does not control the material included in these submissions, UPI does not guarantee the accuracy, integrity or quality of the material in such submissions, and UPI does not endorse any of the views or opinions expressed therein.

 

 


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Comments:

GREAT WORK, JACKIE!!!!!

[1] Posted by Sarah on 09-07-2007 at 10:46 AM • top

I believe him.  I’m relieved but not surprised in the slightest, just as I never believed the Packer hoax.  This is getting to be old.

[2] Posted by Laurence K Wells on 09-07-2007 at 10:52 AM • top

Oh, I do hope the journalist keeps is faithful to print a retraction—that’ll be an interesting bit for our Worthy Opponents to handle (except Scott Gunn who wisely used his experience with African press to distance himself).

[3] Posted by Hosea6:6 on 09-07-2007 at 10:55 AM • top

So once the reporter retracts the story, I wonder if certain blogs on the other side will retract their comments.

I’m afraid this will live on in urban legend forever, though, alongside all those polygamous bishops…

[4] Posted by James Manley on 09-07-2007 at 10:57 AM • top

Additionally, the journalist who issued the statement has given a verbal apology for the misrepresentation and has promised to print a retraction.

Someone please accuse me of triumphalist fist-pumping.  I shall gladly whoop out “Yes!” with a Tiger Woods-like fist-pump.  wink

[5] Posted by Truth Unites... and Divides on 09-07-2007 at 10:57 AM • top

Thank God!

I now await an apology and retraction from Fr. Jake, Susan Russell, et al…

[6] Posted by Matt Kennedy on 09-07-2007 at 10:59 AM • top

please accuse me of triumphalist fist-pumping

We’re Christians so we can forgive you fist-pumping, but no end-zone dances, okay smile

[7] Posted by Hosea6:6 on 09-07-2007 at 11:00 AM • top

So once the reporter retracts the story, I wonder if certain blogs on the other side will retract their comments.

Unfortunately James, it’s not just the other side.  There’s also a blog that titled the thread entry as “Condemnation without Reservation”.

[8] Posted by Truth Unites... and Divides on 09-07-2007 at 11:00 AM • top

This is going to be very very fun to watch…if only I weren’t writing a sermon…

[9] Posted by Matt Kennedy on 09-07-2007 at 11:03 AM • top

Thank heaven.

I know a number of reporters, and they are uniformly liberal and privately express the opinion that their professional responsiblity is to “educate” the readers, who undoubtedly are less bright than their 20-something or maybe early 30-something sublime intellects.  Serious malfeasance on the reporter’s part.

[10] Posted by Reason and Revelation on 09-07-2007 at 11:04 AM • top

No TU&D;—Kendall+ & Greg did the proper thing! They condemned language, I fully support both, the language as reported is straight from Nazi philosophy and should be condemned, just the accountability shifts from the bishop to the report, which is why we are so warned NEVER to be a false witness.

[11] Posted by Hosea6:6 on 09-07-2007 at 11:04 AM • top

TUAD, and that blog’s post uses the same words that Matt Kennedy and Greg Griffith used: “if he is quoted accurately, and I am assuming that he is . . . “

Matt, Greg, and Kendall appropriately denounced these words and the heresy behind these words, while always modifying their repudation with the words “if the statement is accurately quoted” . . . Matt, Greg, and Kendall should be heartened by the correct response that they made to this story.

I would like to see if the reporter keeps his word and issues his RETRACTION.

[12] Posted by Sarah on 09-07-2007 at 11:07 AM • top

I wouldn’t wait too long for the apology.
The Bishops statements did not come out of thin air, it’s clear the reporter simply twisted them.
The “unfit to live” could have easily come from a statement like:
Until homosexuals and lesbians repent they will be unfit to live the life promised by Christ.

It’s entirely different I grant you but it won’t be to reappraisers.
Besides Popoola is a known liar…yada…yada..yada…

[13] Posted by Rocks on 09-07-2007 at 11:07 AM • top

So, this just leaves Jake with his principle of an Archbishop’s responsibility to discipline their bishops. Nah, +Spong has no squirm. Will they retract that?

[14] Posted by Bob Maxwell+ on 09-07-2007 at 11:10 AM • top

Jackie,

Can you post the full text of the email? Or post a link to the Church of Nigeria website where it appears? Would love to read the whole thing.

I for one will post an update/correction on the InclusiveChurch blog with the entry I wrote.

Thanks for letting us know about this.

Pax,
Scott+

[15] Posted by Scott Gunn on 09-07-2007 at 11:10 AM • top

It will take a written apology from the reporter to make the liberal bloggers believe this wasn’t true, and even then some of them won’t buy it, because this comment as quoted fit their template.

[16] Posted by Katherine on 09-07-2007 at 11:16 AM • top

I was very disgusted, upset and saddened to read the statement of Bishop Isaac Orama as quoted by the News Agency of Nigeria in a UPI story who, (if he is quoted accurately, and I am assuming that he is) said that persons involved in same sex behavior “are insane, satanic and are not fit to live.”

These words are to be utterly repudiated by all of us—I hope and trust—KSH.

Canon Kendall Harmon wrote his words based on a faulty assumption.  In addition to repudiating the as-reported words, Canon Kendall Harmon may want to prayerfully consider repudiating his own words of condemnation towards Bishop Orama.

There was a premature rush to judgment.  It reminds me of the premature rush to harsh judgment against the Duke Lacrosse players for a rape.  To be honest, I expected better.  I expected a wait-and-see-and-check for verified confirmation before piling on by Canon Harmon.

If there is a need for reasserters to be honest in policing and regulating each other, then Canon Harmon is definitely to be policed and regulated as well.  Does he place himself above justified criticism?

[17] Posted by Truth Unites... and Divides on 09-07-2007 at 11:16 AM • top

I agree with TUaD.  If the bishop (or any Christian) were to say that “homosexuals” (or “paedophiles” or “pyromaniacs” or “kleptomaniacs”) were “unfit to live” that would merit the strongest condemnation, but if one were to say that “unrepentant active homosexuals and lesbians” are “unfit to live the in Christ” (to be communicant “communicating” members of the Church) he would simply be stating the obvious.  And if one were to claim that a society organized on Christian principles could punish with death those engaged in sexual practices condemned in the OT such as adultery or anal intercourse, then, again, that person would merely be stating the obvious.

[18] Posted by William Tighe on 09-07-2007 at 11:24 AM • top

You are all correct to criticize the rush to judgment from the left on this one. I wonder if you’ll have the same attitude the next time a comment is attributed to a liberal bishop? Does it work both ways?

As for the “template” of Nigerian Anglican Christianity, these alleged remarks *do* seem to fit right in. Akinola and his spokesman have had their share of quotable comments on this topic, not all of them particularly charitable.

Pax,
Scott+

[19] Posted by Scott Gunn on 09-07-2007 at 11:26 AM • top

Here is a paraphrase of what I posted on T-29, amazingly enough no one paid any attention, but then I’m just an old “grannie” what would I know?

*Oh Lord, I thank you that I am not like other men/women, especially that poor bishop in Africa”......

and to the “reappraisers) (remember its T-19), just a few words:

Motes and Beams…..........

Grannie Gloria

[20] Posted by Grandmother on 09-07-2007 at 11:29 AM • top

TU&D;and Mr. Tighe,

You’re both out of line with your criticisms. You’re factually incorrect, and you’re ignoring the realities of the world we live in.

Scott,

We’re taking our time with this one. Jackie will be carefully reviewing everything she gets, and will take equal care in publishing it. This isn’t over yet - we need to wait and see what we get, and whether we can count on it as accurate. Thank you for you offer to run a retraction - you’ve been one of the few bright spots among our Worthy Opponents in this little episode.

[21] Posted by Greg Griffith on 09-07-2007 at 11:29 AM • top

And if one were to claim that a society organized on Christian principles could punish with death those engaged in sexual practices condemned in the OT such as adultery or anal intercourse, then, again, that person would merely be stating the obvious.

Do you mean this, William? You seem to be saying that an Anglican Bishop might actually support the imposition of capital punishment for (anal) sodomy. Or am I misunderstanding you?

[22] Posted by Paul Stanley on 09-07-2007 at 11:33 AM • top

Here’s Jake’s reasoned and honorable response:

“We’re not going to discuss Canon Popoola, who has been proven to be a false witness. Don’t like that decision? Go somewhere else.’

[23] Posted by Matt Kennedy on 09-07-2007 at 11:37 AM • top

Nothing new here. Many liberal, left-wing “reporters” (who usually end up being pontificators) are not above twisting and slanting the facts in order to make the news fit their worldview. As others have said, I would like to see what the reporters retraction will look like, if it does appear at all. It will probably be something vague, half-hearted, and brief. After all, the original “twist” was almost certainly deliberately made to make the evil, homophobic conservative opposition look bad; a true, heartfelt and honest retraction would actually undo what the initial lie was meant to accomplish.

[24] Posted by Bob K. on 09-07-2007 at 11:37 AM • top

Should Bp. Orama be proven innocent,I would wonder how quickly the Episcopal left would be scurrying to sweep their responses and rush to judgment under the rug or continue to demonize and scapegoat Bp. Obama and the Nigerian Church as if vindication hadn’t come..

[25] Posted by paddy c on 09-07-2007 at 11:39 AM • top

Sounds like our benevolent friend Fr Martin’s inclusive veneer is a tad chippy and a positively ‘fundamentalist’ mindset is rising to the top.

[26] Posted by paddy c on 09-07-2007 at 11:45 AM • top

Scott+, with all due respect, afaIk the stuff that revisionists always quote from ++Akinola is careful to distinguish between a) homosexual behavior, b) promotion of the normalization of homosexuality, and c) homosexually-tempted people.  The first is gravely sinful, the second may well be regarded as Satanic, and the third are erring children of God whom it is the Church’s mission to bring to the Grace of Christ.  (Any counterexamples, with links, would be appreciated.)

All would appear to me well within the bounds of Christian charity, unless by “charitable” one means simply “nice and polite”, and reflect the teaching of both Scripture and the Tradition.
<hr width=50% align=center>
It’s genuinely gratifying to be vindicated—as Paula, Antique, TUaD, and others (including, of course, me), who have consistently expressed skepticism about the NAN report—and it’s also telling that Jake+ wrote an entire blog entry on it (which started the whole brouhaha) without apparently trying very hard to confirm it.

Once again, one of the surest indicators of the fallen nature of humanity is the ease with which we believe things which reinforce our own (unreasoning) desires and prejudices.

[27] Posted by Craig Goodrich on 09-07-2007 at 11:47 AM • top

Oh its funny to watch, I posted Jackie’s news on two threads and all they are all beside themselves…“Popoola is a liar”...etc..please go…bring your popcorn

[28] Posted by Matt Kennedy on 09-07-2007 at 11:47 AM • top

Dr. Tighe,

There are two point I vehemently disagree with you, first any use of Leviticus exhortations must be used in the whole counsel of Scripture, especially that which deals with distributive justice, so we don’t start with minorities but majorities, until we’re ready to bring OT prescriptions on heterosexual sins we have no right to bring them on minority of the sins. The second is the concept of Lebensunwertes Leben (“life unworthy of life”), this is heresy and I remind you that phrase is not applied to political, moral or Jewish populations, rather the first targeted group of the Nazis, which unless we defend all life as a gift we have undermined our basis to speak out against abortion or euthanasia. That is one HUGE reason I believe Kendall+ “Condemned without Reservation.” These reported statements attack other issues outside sexuality ones. I’m glad the reporter confessed and this is an example of how serious lying can be or why false witness is in the Ten Commandments.

[29] Posted by Hosea6:6 on 09-07-2007 at 11:55 AM • top

“And if one were to claim that a society organized on Christian principles could punish with death those engaged in sexual practices condemned in the OT such as adultery or anal intercourse, then, again, that person would merely be stating the obvious.”

EXCUSE ME???????????
Please clarify this. I hope that what I think I just read is not what you thought you just wrote.

[30] Posted by Cynthia Gee(AKA CJ/goldndog) on 09-07-2007 at 12:05 PM • top

May God bless and help us all, and our WOs also, through the grace of Christ who died for sinners, but:

A report was made of an alleged comment attributed to Bishop Orama.  I agree—as do almost all here—that the comment as attributed, especially as it would be understood by N. Atlantic speakers of English was deplorable.  Our best info—and it’s pretty strong—is that the comment was not made by Orama:  the original article was quickly withdrawn, and contained no detail of circumstance, and was anonymous and unconfirmed, Orama, the reports now say, has denied it, and the reporter has apologized. 

One thing deplorable, and widely deplored, about the comment was that it singled out some sins and some sinners, thus implicitly ignoring, one may argue, the fact that we are all sinners, who need Christ’s forgiveness for our sins.  There are really three points here, at least.  (1) I, emphatically aware of God’s grace to me a sinner, agree that our universal culpability is an important point, and should make us slow to judge others—and (2) particularly, slow to judge lapses and weakness that result in sin on the part of others.  Quick, therefore, also to accept repentence. (3)  Some evenhandedness is required, not judging some sins—those we happen to particularly find troublesome—disproportionately to others. 

But how are these principles applied—even here, at SFIF, and by respected leaders here (respected by me among others)? 

Of course, Orama did not say these things, and the quick even tentative acceptation of their veracity, and strong response is troubling, I think, and reflects too much readiness to go along with stereotypes of people from other cultures (and with a racial gloss not so very far beneath the surface, perhaps).  But as a gedanken-experiment lets suppose that someone *had* said such a thing.

Why is it that one comment, perhaps made without thinking it through, on one occasion, by a Nigerian, leads to calls for his removal from office, the called-for responsibility of his Archbishop to verify and discipline the matter, the responsibility of the Archbishop’s American representative to do the same, an alleged investigation of the matter by the +ABC, and so on, whereas:  very many, well-considered, publiushed, oft repeated, unrepentent, statements of a very radical nature by Westerners do NOT lead to any calls for investigation, any calls for intervention by higher prelates, and their subordinates, any outraged condemnation, and so on. 

Isn’t the clear message that such a comment, even made in error, a misspeaking, retracted, and so on, would be something like the unforgiveable sin.  But a denial of Christ’s uniqueness, the trinity, the virgin birth, the resurrection, the existence of a God who pre-knows and intervenes in history—these are not only forgiveable as errors once retraced, but are indeed allowable as ongoing statements. 

SO:  IF it is the case—I don’t say it was, but if it was—that the ABC (++RDW) asked ++Akinola to investigate this one, once uttered (it was alleged) comment, how can the ABC not also ask +KJS to explain her denials of CHristian doctrine, or to reprimand (for instance) Spong, and for that matter ++Aspinal for hosting Spong. 

And if a key point is that we are all forgiven sinners, how is it that Greg, Matt+, Sarah, et al didn’t say “Of course, if the bishop alleged to have said this actually said it, as soon as he repents, he should be forgiven, for we are all sinners.  His sin in speaking this wrong thing—on one occasion—does not weigh more heavily than our sins. 

How is it that a one time lapse—had it occurred, which it (as best we know) did not—by an African, departing from the conservative (orthodox) position and adding wrongly (and illogically) to it a remark demeaning of others, is the object of such scrutiny and calls for immediate mandatory action; whereas repeated lapses and including slurs and demeaning comments by N Atlantic Christians (even if there were a prospect of their being retracted) don’t receive anything like the same attention.

How, too, is it that the scantiest of evidence quickly withdrawn in this matter continued to generate such vehement reaction, until something like confirmation that it was a misreport occurred?  Is that evenhanded?  Is it a sign that even in our own thinking, the debate gets framed by the presuppositions of those who find denial of Christ’s deity (or promotion of polyamory, sometimes even for youngsters, etc.) unproblematic, a matter for intereistng discussion at the least, but who find serious condemnation of those positions beyond the pale?

Where’s the even handedness?  Where’s the logic?  How is this compatible with the core assumption that faith in Christ is the CENTRAL aspect of Christianity?  How is this not racially discriminatory in its attitudes?  How is it not onesided in the kind of deviations from the Christian faith involved? 

I find it all rather perplexing, and rather disturbing.

I speak not of and to people on heresy-tolerant or affirming blogs (there’s little reason to suppose they could even listen to this kind of questioning) but of and to people at SFIF.

(And to the ABC if, as was alleged, he asked Akinola for an explanation or action.)

Don’t we need to ask ourselves these questions?

[31] Posted by Scruff on 09-07-2007 at 12:09 PM • top

But that’s what Jake did - he didn’t like the disavowal so he went somewhere else - back to hysterical, unproven accusations. Home is always a more comfortable place.

[32] Posted by Enough on 09-07-2007 at 12:10 PM • top

And if a key point is that we are all forgiven sinners, how is it that Greg, Matt+, Sarah, et al didn’t say “Of course, if the bishop alleged to have said this actually said it, as soon as he repents, he should be forgiven, for we are all sinners.

This IS what we said - go back and read the statements. In my post, I also stated - TWICE - that my remarks were predicated on the assumption that the report was true. Notice I also said that if the report was not true, then the UPI reporter needed to be fired.

If the report is false, then the bishop doesn’t need to be forgiven, because he didn’t do anything. If he HAD made the statement, and asked for forgiveness, it would certainly be forthcoming from me. however, it doesn’t follow that because he asked forgiveness and forgiveness was granted, that he needs to retain his position as a bishop.

[33] Posted by Greg Griffith on 09-07-2007 at 12:17 PM • top

“Why is it that one comment, perhaps made without thinking it through, on one occasion, by a Nigerian, leads to calls for his removal from office…... whereas:  very many, well-considered, publiushed, oft repeated, unrepentent, statements of a very radical nature by Westerners do NOT lead to any calls for investigation, any calls for intervention by higher prelates, and their subordinates, any outraged condemnation, and so on.”

Good question.. they really SHOULD, you know. Of course, if we applied the same standards to Westerners, the entire Dominionist Movement would collapse…...
Scruff, I LIKE the way you think!

[34] Posted by Cynthia Gee(AKA CJ/goldndog) on 09-07-2007 at 12:19 PM • top

Wow, I’m now pleading for mercy for doing the double fist-pump!  (But I’m not doing any endzone dances!)

Scruff, that was an amazingly great post!  I laud and applaud every single word of your loving comment.  I am deeply moved and deeply grateful to you for your exhortations and encouragement to look within ourselves to serve Jesus more faithfully at SFIF.

[35] Posted by Truth Unites... and Divides on 09-07-2007 at 12:21 PM • top

Just to remove uncertainty, the states all need to reenact strong anti-abortion and anti-sodomy laws that will survive Supreme Court review. We will regain enough of what was lost if this can be done.

[36] Posted by henryleroi on 09-07-2007 at 12:23 PM • top

Hosea..,  You raise some questions here.  Second, who in this discussion is proposing such an “unworthy life” concept but the yecusa with all the “reproductive rights” smokescreen, or how does that fit this discussion? (Not trying to “police” the thread, just to understand it.)  But First, yes, the Torah does proscribe buggary along with adultery, premarital sex, rape, bestiality, etc., but are you saying that the Church needs to be on track about condemning the rest before condemning the former?  How do we not condemn those?  Sin is sin, and the Church is sent into the world to proclaim God’s holy love to all.  Whether I am telling a person of whatever predilection about Jesus, they would not be realistic in saying that I needed to tell so-and-so first, or that I was singling them out.  The Lord does the singling, drawing each individual to repentance, and sends the Church to proclaim His salvation to them all.  This much I know.  What am I missing?
Robert

[37] Posted by Robert Easter on 09-07-2007 at 12:25 PM • top

Notice I also said that if the report was not true, then the UPI reporter needed to be fired.

Greg:

Reports are never fired. You seem to have an amazing ability to make these decisions about other people’s careers.

[38] Posted by henryleroi on 09-07-2007 at 12:32 PM • top

Greg makes an important point – if the bishop had made the statement, repented, asked for and been granted forgiveness, it doesn’t necessarily follow that he should be allowed to retain his position as bishop.
These positions of authority are not status objects granted as rewards and removed as punishments. To be a bishop (or a priest) is not a right or even a privilege. It is a responsibility that would rightly be removed from one who had shown questionable judgment in the past.

[39] Posted by Deja Vu on 09-07-2007 at 12:41 PM • top

My bet is that the reporter won’t be fired because he was never hired in the first place.  NAN offers a “Press Release” service which might well be the channel used to enter the story.

[40] Posted by Craig Goodrich on 09-07-2007 at 12:43 PM • top

henryleroi,

You seem to have an amazing ability to make these decisions about other people’s careers.

No, I’m stating an opinion about a job.

And what do you mean, “reporters are never fired?” Like Jayson Blair? Stephen Glass? Janet Cooke?

[41] Posted by Greg Griffith on 09-07-2007 at 12:43 PM • top

<i>No TU&D;—Kendall+ & Greg did the proper thing! <i>

Yeah…they perpetuated a rumor…something the mainstream media refused to do.

Further, dispite the disclaimers, if libel law remains essentially as it was when I took the course almost 50 years ago, those who perpetuate a libel then become a party to it. Further, the only defense against libel is the truth and the burden of proof falls upon the publisher of the libelous statement, not the individual who has been libel.

That is exactly why this statement did not appear in the mainstream media and that is exactly why it should not have appeared here.

[42] Posted by Forgiven on 09-07-2007 at 12:46 PM • top

Quoted from Kendall Harmon:
“(if he is quoted accurately, and I am assuming that he is)”

If another reasserter blogster (you know who I mean) had handled this affair in the manner of Kendall Harmon and Standfirm, I shudder to think of the shriek of indignation which would have gone up.  At the risk of attracting the negative attention of the Commenatrix, I must register my disappointment in the handling of this incident by the reasserters.  We have been told plainly that the burden of proof is on Bp Orama, because “that’s how the world is.”  The impression is that both Kendall Harmon and Standfirm were willing to throw Bp Orama under the bus in order to retain their respectable standing in the blogosphere.  While the necessary qualifications were ritually expressed, there was a noticeable absence of the subjunctive mood:  always “if he is,” not “if it be.”  Shame!

[43] Posted by Laurence K Wells on 09-07-2007 at 12:49 PM • top

Gregg:

Well, it’s always an opinion no matter how authoritatively stated.

The three names you cite egregiously fabricated stories out of whole cloth.

Ordinary reporters who get the quotes wrong are not fired.

[44] Posted by henryleroi on 09-07-2007 at 12:49 PM • top

RE: “That is exactly why this statement did not appear in the mainstream media and that is exactly why it should not have appeared here.”

Nonsense.  Reasserters are not afraid of publicizing news stories.  And we don’t hide things that may look embarrassing.

The statement absolutely needed to be presented here at SF.  It absolutely needed to be repudiated [with the appropriate disclaimers, as indeed occurred, but which appears to irk some reasserters on this thread] by Greg, Matt, and Kendall.

And such matters will appear again on the StandFirm blog whenever the bloggers deem it to be important to do so.

I am proud of Kendall, Greg, and Matt.  Keep up the good work, folks!

[45] Posted by Sarah on 09-07-2007 at 12:52 PM • top

RE: “And what do you mean, “reporters are never fired?” Like Jayson Blair? Stephen Glass? Janet Cooke?”

Heh. 

Facts are irritatin’ things, Greg!  ; > )

[46] Posted by Sarah on 09-07-2007 at 12:53 PM • top

There was nothing wrong with calling attention to quote the media attributed to Bishop Orama.  (It was attention-grabbing.)  There was nothing wrong with condemning the quote.  (It was an evil statement.)  There was nothing wrong with assuming that he was the source of the quote.  (The media is our main source for such information.)

But may I say that I was skeptical that he had said this, and am elated to hear that he denies having said it.

And people who continue to spread the claim that Bishop Orama made the statement, without also pointing out that he denies having done so and that the Anglican Church of Nigeria has plainly rejected such sentiments, are bearing false witness against a neighbor—while at the same time giving Bishop Orama’s name and authority to a violently homophobic sentiment, with no apparent concern for how this might affect lesbians and gay men in Nigeria.

I cannot understand why anyone would rather believe that Nigerian bishops support the slaughter of lesbians and gay men than believe that they don’t, to the point of misrepresenting the facts to support the former claim.  Who does this help?

[47] Posted by Tom Head on 09-07-2007 at 12:55 PM • top

I wrote:

“And if one were to claim that a society organized on Christian principles could punish with death those engaged in sexual practices condemned in the OT such as adultery or anal intercourse, then, again, that person would merely be stating the obvious.”

and Paul Stanley wrote:

“Do you mean this, William? You seem to be saying that an Anglican Bishop might actually support the imposition of capital punishment for (anal) sodomy. Or am I misunderstanding you?”

I was saying nothing about any Anglican bishop.  What I was saying was, given the Levitical punsihments for sexually perverse activities and given the fact that the laws of such diverse Christian societies (i.e., societies that strove to organize themselves and their laws on the basis of Christian tradition and practice) as Protestant Geneva, Papal Rome and Congregationalist Connecticut (where a farmer was executed in 1800 or 1801 after being convicted for bestiality upon a pig) imposing the death penalty for sexual crimes seems to me to be no more objectionable from a Christian theological or historical perspective, than imposing it for murder, treason, rape or kidnapping.  (I myself have an emotional aversion towards the death penalty, both as it is an irrevocable penalty and from my own melancholy sense of the tragedy of life and the manner in which almost anyone can become entrammeled in evil unawares [as it seems], but if one accepts the legitimacy of the death penalty for any offenses, or any offenses other, perhaps, than deliberate murder, I do not see any reason why such a penalty would be inappropriate for sexual offenses.)

Probably in my orginal statement I should have written “might” rather than “could”—but I’m not sure that that would have averted the amusing outpouring of indignation that it seems to have evoked.

[48] Posted by William Tighe on 09-07-2007 at 12:56 PM • top

RE: “The impression is that both Kendall Harmon and Standfirm were willing to throw Bp Orama under the bus in order to retain their respectable standing in the blogosphere.  While the necessary qualifications were ritually expressed, there was a noticeable absence of the subjunctive mood:  always “if he is,” not “if it be.” Shame!”

LOL. 

What “respectable standing” Laurence K Wells?  ; > )

We have no “respectable standing” amongst progressives, nor do we desire it.

RE: “While the necessary qualifications were ritually expressed . . . “

Yep.  Much to the seeming discomfiture of the reasserters who are upset with Greg.  ; > ) 

Greg, Kendall, and Matt professionally covered all bases.  The fact that some don’t like it . . . well . . .

RE: “Shame!”

Nope.

“Honor!”  “Integrity!”  “Responsible!”  “Upright!”  “Believing Christian who loves the gospel!”

; > )

[49] Posted by Sarah on 09-07-2007 at 12:58 PM • top

I should also say that I am very proud of the Stand Firm team for publicly repudiating this statement instead of simply pretending that it didn’t exist.  That was a profoundly honorable and good act, and should be pretty much universally acknowledged as such—especially by people who go around talking about how much they care about inclusion.

[50] Posted by Tom Head on 09-07-2007 at 12:58 PM • top

  Sin is sin, and the Church is sent into the world to proclaim God’s holy love to all. 

Along this same line of thinking Paul wrote (Romans 6:23):  “The wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is life eternal through Christ Jesus our Lord.”  Note that “death” here is not our saying that a sinner is not fit to live, but God’s judgment on sin—a judgment that all sinners “are not fit to live” without repentence and God’s forgiveness through Jesus Christ. 

  Should Bp. Orama be proven innocent,I would wonder how quickly the Episcopal left would be scurrying to sweep their responses and rush to judgment under the rug or continue to demonize and scapegoat Bp. Obama and the Nigerian Church as if vindication hadn’t come.. 

It’s interesting that on his website Father Jake apparently continues to assert that Bishop Orama made the reported statements despite the denial from Bishop Popoola (the “liar”).  One can only guess that he needs “proof” that from Archbishop Akinola on down the church is filled with homophobes.  How inconvenient to have a denial!

[51] Posted by hanks on 09-07-2007 at 12:58 PM • top

Robert Easter—

My second point was a defense of Greg & Kendall+ for doing the right thing and speaking against the statement. In both responses they each focused on “are insane, satanic and are not fit to live” phrase of this report. There been several appeals to OT or on this thread attacks on Kendall+ for giving in with his condemnation of the statement. It’s a repulsive statement, now coming out manufactured by a reporter. The statement is repugnant regardless of who made it. We need to stand against any de-humanization, for that is how mass murders are justified (in Rwanda saying ‘folks who commit homosexual act are cockroaches’ should solicit a similar condemnation without reservation for that’s the phrase used in 1994).

My first point is that sis is sin and one sin is to apply God’s law unevenly. I’m not going to comment on Lev. 18, but I’ll remind people that anyone who divorces his wife and marries another commits adultery, the law requires stoning of both parties in adultery (notice John 8 the woman was caught in adultery ... so where is the guy?), now if a guy is on his third marriage and a woman her first both are worthy of death. How many family members or friends does that describe of each of us? Until we’re ready to face hard choices in our own families we need to be cautious at proscribing things for others. So if we point to one section of Scripture for another, we must own that which effects us and those close to us. That logic will help guard us from the mistakes the pharisees made. (Our sinful hearts seem to bring Scripture down on those sins which don’t effect us but stop short on those which do).

Rapping up my first point is more eloquently make by ++Nzimbi

“Here, in the context of Kenya, if we take somebody who is polygamous and we make him a lay reader or a priest, we would be doing the wrong thing. . . . If I know somebody is a homosexual, and I make him a lay reader, or I make him a priest, or I make him a bishop, I am sanctioning what he is doing as right. I am saying ‘no’ to this, and the church is saying ‘no’ to this.”

It speaks not just of Western issues but owns African ones as well.

[52] Posted by Hosea6:6 on 09-07-2007 at 12:59 PM • top

TU&D;, Dr. Tighe, and Fr. Wells are quite correct.  There was an unseemly rush on our side to accept the original report.

[53] Posted by evan miller on 09-07-2007 at 01:00 PM • top

Re “throwing Bishop Orama under the bus”: If I ever say I believe members of [insert group here] are not fit to live, you have my permission to “throw me under the bus” by chewing me out for it.  I would be very disappointed if my friends did not.  Bishop Orama benefits from being held to a high standard in such matters, instead of being treated in a “what do you expect, it’s Nigeria” sort of way.

[54] Posted by Tom Head on 09-07-2007 at 01:01 PM • top

Greg—

I suggest that you remove the previous thread “Unfit for the Episcopacy” immediately. The longer it stays up the more it compounds the problem.

[55] Posted by Forgiven on 09-07-2007 at 01:02 PM • top

This is good news, but let’s not yet take it as definitive. Journalistic retractions are usually sincere. But reporters sometimes issue retractions for other reasons: e.g., to maintain working relations with an important source. I’ve seen it happen. I’m not saying that’s the case here—-only that we need to read the denial and retraction before wielding our verbal bicycle chains against those who republished this report. [Also posted on T19]

[56] Posted by Irenaeus on 09-07-2007 at 01:08 PM • top

I’m concerned that this website chose to put the worst possible construction on the reported words of Bp Orama. Whatever he might’ve said, it’s doubtful that anyone in any church or in any of the religions except the mosque next door contemplates murderous violence against homosexuals.

[57] Posted by henryleroi on 09-07-2007 at 01:17 PM • top

Oh, for Heaven’s sake!

What made this story go big time in the first place was Jake’s picking it up and the whole EpiscoLeft blogosphere going ballistic over it.  I personally think that the constant care bloggers like Matt+, Kendall+, and Greg take to be overcareful and overcautious and overpolite lest any whiff of homophobia contaminate them is both tiresome and fruitless (since they will in any case be accused by our demented opponents of homophobia, serial murder, racism,  tormenting cute small furry animals, eating red meat, and emitting carbon dioxide, no matter how careful and Politically Correct their disclaimers may be), but I suppose that’s part of their job.

We are now not only fecklessly attacking each other over Anglican Communion tactical issues, we’re nitpicking—“and Greg, in your commentary you never mentioned that if +Orama drove a Hummer, they should stop paying for his gas.”  “But Greg, you prejudged the poor bishop—maybe he needs the Hummer to haul home food for his pet Black Lab and her cute small furry puppies.”  “But Greg, you specifically mentioned his Black Lab—don’t you understand that this could be interpreted as racist?”

Let’s give it a rest.  The EpiscoLeft is terrorized into frothing incoherence by the prospect of actual discipline of ECUSA, Jack Spong has made such a public idiot of himself that even his sycophants are starting to desert, Nairobi showed wonderful unity in the GS, and so on and so on.  Things are looking up.  Enjoy.  Give thanks.  Relax.

[58] Posted by Craig Goodrich on 09-07-2007 at 01:20 PM • top

Been There…

Removing the post would be an admission that I didn’t mean what i said. I did mean what I said, and I still do. I will say it again if something similar happens in the future. I didn’t say what I said for the benefit of the liberal crowd - as Sarah points out, they don’t like us, they don’t respect us, they never will no matter how honorable we conduct ourselves as long as we hold a different opinion on the matter of homosexuality, and we don’t desire their approval or respect in any event.

I write things like that because they are the right things to do, in the situation, in the moment. I will leave no room for anyone - on EITHER side - to accuse me of condoning by my silence statements such as the ones attributed to Bishop Orama.

[59] Posted by Greg Griffith on 09-07-2007 at 01:21 PM • top

“There was an unseemly rush on our side to accept the original report”

I disagree, the UPI article was being posted by reappraiser on any thread that had to do with African throughout the day, it ended up on a article about the Ugandan consecrations, it ended up on the Rwanda announcement of AMiA bishops. Literally this story demanded to be dealt with or the it’d takeover every-other thread. +Kendall & Greg were late in the day posting a response.

As one bored off my butt with the housing market slowdown, they posted none-too-soon for a link to that article was everywhere with baiting comments. They did leave room for it to be in error, they both dealt with easiest part to condemn (the de-humanization part) and provided an outlet for conversation on that article.

Having lived forward through this fiasco (as opposed to the current hindsight evaluation), I appalled both Kendall+ & Greg and believe they handed things as best they could in the storm.  I urge caution on those here quick to condemn them as air-chair webmasters less Greg feels compelled to write an article “Reaffirmers Hears What they Wants to Hear, not What Was said.”

[60] Posted by Hosea6:6 on 09-07-2007 at 01:22 PM • top

Been There,
You are way off base.  The greater harm would have been if the Reasserter blogs had ignored this report.  Sure it would have been nice to wait to comment until it could have been verified but in the meantime, how many people could have walked away thinking that the Reasserter blogs were simply hoping the problem would “fly under the radar” or worse condoned it?  Good grief, do you know how many people believe something is true JUST BECAUSE they read it in the paper or hear it on the news?  I am sure that every one of Jake, Susan or Kaeton’s readers think they checked the article out before posting since none of them seemed to be willing to make room for it to be inaccurate.
We do what we are doing at Stand Firm because we believe truth should always win out.  More than once we have posted things that were not complimentary to the Reasserter side of this equation.  So be it.  We are all human and fall far short of the glory of Christ. 

Don’t you think it was important that our readers knew where we stood on the reported words BEFORE it was disclosed the article was incorrect.  This way there is no doubt.  Greg did not take the easy way out.  He played the man. 

Without having personal knowledge of the Bishop, that was the best that could be done until such time as the story was checked.  If those words had been attributed to me, I would at least want the comfort of knowing that those who stood with me theologically stood up without qualm and denounced the words.  Afterall, the greater harm would have been to allow anyone to think those words and thoughts were okay or something the Church would sanction. 

I would also want to know that they were then working to get to the truth of the matter.  Whatever that might be.

[61] Posted by JackieB on 09-07-2007 at 01:22 PM • top

As opposed to the very small child tantrum by Fr. Jake,  Susan Russell has responded like an adult:

http://inchatatime.blogspot.com/2007/09/good-news-from-nigeria-for-change.html

[62] Posted by Matt Kennedy on 09-07-2007 at 01:24 PM • top

Both T19 and this site presented the issue as, “IF this was said, then what is the right (Christian) response?”  This invited those of us who value the authority of the Bible to articulate a Biblical, rather than emotional or political response.  We were able to speak of Biblical criteria for leadership, the implications of our own status as sinners, the need to hold up church matters in the light of day, and other Biblical values - all the while holding open the possiblity that the quote might prove bogus.  The articulation of our values is still worthwhile, even it the situation is just hypothetical.
Once again, we showed that we can place ourselves under the critique of the Bible.  We were true to its values, even if these were going to prove costly or embarrasing. 
When I was in the diocese of Los Angeles, the LGBT peace/justice/love/flowers people circulated a vile fax filled with anti-homosexual slurs, which they blamed on a flagship conservative parish.  These tricks will continue to happen.  We are dealing with people who have no guiding values but self-assertion and political “victories”, no matter how demonstrably Pyrrhic.  We do well to stand in the light and apply Godly precepts, even when costly.  As Paul says (about lawsuits, LOL), “Better to be defrauded.”

[63] Posted by Timothy Fountain on 09-07-2007 at 01:25 PM • top

Nonsense.  Reasserters are not afraid of publicizing news stories.  And we don’t hide things that may look embarrassing

Sorry Sarah, my comment is not about pride or hiding things. It is about law. And you can pound your chest all day long, but StandFirm perpetuated a statement wrongfully attributed to Orama and in doing so put the bishop in a bad light. That is libel per se (or is it per quod) and if Bishop Orama takes action, which I predict that he will not, StandFirm better make sure its libel insurance is paid up. While the internet offers some leeway, the laws of libel still apply. I suggest you talk to a good libel attorney and find out what is actionable and what is not. The laws have changed since I studied libel law but this situation is pretty basic.

[64] Posted by Forgiven on 09-07-2007 at 01:27 PM • top

OK, I realize this is a serious issue but when you first scanned this post, didn’t you think it read the Venerable Poopah?  Hey, it is Friday and I was at the concert for Virginia Tech until the wee hours last night.  Dave Mathews sings a lot about God…

That aside, it seems like Greg et al. was caught in a vicious catch-22 situation.  Get criticized from the left for not speaking out and get criticized from the right for speaking out.  The real issue is of course that favorite boogeyman, “Mr. Instant Internet Communication.”  One story gets all this started, not substantiated. And now one email seems to suggest error (pending substantiation).  We’re simply falling victim to the same trap.  We need to be patient and wait to see what the “official” word is before we know what is what.

[65] Posted by Widening Gyre on 09-07-2007 at 01:36 PM • top

“The greater harm would have been if the reasserter blogs had ignored this report”—-Jackie

Agreed!

[66] Posted by Irenaeus on 09-07-2007 at 01:39 PM • top

Thank God!

I now await an apology and retraction from Fr. Jake, Susan Russell, et al…

Posted by Matt Kennedy on 09-07-2007 at 09:59 AM

With deep respect and admiration, all I’m suggesting if that if there are going to be calls for apologies from revisionists and their blogs based on a faulty assumption, then why shouldn’t there be apologies from reasserters and their blogs who also made similar condemnations based on the same faulty assumption?  I don’t get that.

P.S.  I want to thank and acknowledge Dr. Tighe, Fr. Wells, Scruff, Evan Miller, and Been There for holding us reasserters accountable.

[67] Posted by Truth Unites... and Divides on 09-07-2007 at 01:42 PM • top

WG -
I personally received the email that was reported earlier.  The Living Church has now issued a report on the information.  It is reported here.

[68] Posted by JackieB on 09-07-2007 at 01:43 PM • top

RE: “And you can pound your chest all day long . . . “

LOL.  Not pounding my chest—just saying the precise opposite of what you are saying.  Complete and utter rejection of each of your points is certainly not “pounding my chest”.  It’s merely repudiation and then asserting the opposite of what you have said.  Besides . . . it hurts when I pound my chest.  ; > )

[69] Posted by Sarah on 09-07-2007 at 01:43 PM • top

My few comments:
1. I agree that Greg should keep the thread up.  To remove it amounts to a revisioning of what actually occurred.  Yes, the remarks turn out to have been false.  It is unfortunate that such a hoax would be perpetrated.  However, to remove the thread at this point is to pretend that such did not occur.  Maybe an editorial comment following the original article linking the retraction story.
2. In my view, neither Kendall nor Greg have ‘thrown the bishop under the bus.’  I suspect that, sadly, neither knows this bishop.  They addressed the statements, which were reprehensible, not the person.  Were such a person to make these statemnt, that person would be unfit for the episcopacy.  Happily, he did not make the statements attirbuted to him.  However, the quotes were in the public converstaion and were from a credible source.  The person to be castigatd is not Greg nor Kendall, but the reporter and UPI.
3. Remember that these things occur in real time.  The quotes came in real time.  the appropriate critique of those comments occurrred in real time, and the disavowal of the veracity of those statements came out in real time.  This is a great example of the dark side of the internet and the ability to hit ‘send’ long before the gift of self-reflection and restraint comes to the finger.  As one who has been villified on the internet (as well as greatly affirmed), at the end of the day, it is my family and friends that know the truth about me.  That is enough.  Self-knowledge of true integrity is more important to have than perceived integrity attributed by people who don’t know me.
4. And finally, one of the dangers in the ‘orthodox’ comment that I perceive is an unwillingness to self-critique.  We are often so afraid and weary of the attacks on us from those to the leftward of us that we have a tendency to close ranks and perceive that any critique is an attack and therefore unnjustified.

Both Greg and Kendall have done their internet communities a service by being consistent.  Thank you, guys.

[70] Posted by Neal in Dallas on 09-07-2007 at 01:44 PM • top

Without having personal knowledge of the Bishop, that was the best that could be done until such time as the story was checked

Jackie—

When I was a reporter for the AP we were not allowed to file stories based on rumor until the facts could be confirmed. Why do you suppose that was and why do you suppose, as someone pointed out, the mainstream media did not pick up the story?

As I indicated above, the libel laws may have changed since I was a reporter, but this entire thread and the previous one raises huge red flags and you really need to find out what you can and cannot do.

The one thing I think SFIF did right in this entire sorry episode was move quickly when it learned the story was wrong. In the olden days this would help mitigate the damages.

The reality here is that I don’t think SFIF can afford to even fight a libel suit, much less pay damages. And frankly, when I send you money I want to help pay for a trip to New Orleans or somewhere else, not support the StandFirm legal defense fund.

I know the libel laws have been eased somewhat since I was a reporter but I really think you need to find out what is permissable and what is actionable.

You’re not playing a game here, you’re in the publishing business. Unfortunately, the First Amendment does not apply when someone is libeled. The ONLY defense against libel is the proving the libelous statement is true and that burden falls on the publisher of the libelous statement. This could not be done when the statement was published and now it turns out that it was not true.

You’re dead if Orama decides to make you so.

[71] Posted by Forgiven on 09-07-2007 at 01:45 PM • top

When I was a reporter for the AP we were not allowed to file stories based on rumor until the facts could be confirmed.

Which is EXACTLY why there was given some credibility. What two wire services have been “around forever?” What two printer fascinated me in my father’s office? I’ll give you a hint ... “Associated Press” and “United Press.” If you did work for AP, then you’d understand UPI is the competitor and liable for the reporting and why it was their responsibility to verify the story. Greg is like the Washington Post who ran your AP story, if you were in error the Post was not going to take the dive. Also based on years of service AP, Reuters and UPI are trusted wire services.

[72] Posted by Hosea6:6 on 09-07-2007 at 01:51 PM • top

Liability for defamation is not the issue here. But for the record, when writing about a “public figure” (a concept that should include any sitting diocesan bishop), the First Amendment bars liability unless you knew that a statement was false or you acted in reckless disregard of its truth or falsity.

[73] Posted by Irenaeus on 09-07-2007 at 01:52 PM • top

Been There,

I appreciate your concern, but we are not remotely in danger of having committed libel. We would had to have:

1) Made a statement or accusation that was false;

and

2) Known the statement was false when we made it;

In addition, the person about whom it was stated would have to show that it harmed him materially - from lost wages or revenue, or a damaged reputation that prevented him from realizing income.

We simply reported what a reputable news agency reported, and I commented on what should happen if it turned out the report was accurate. I clearly qualified my statements as being contingent upon discovering that the report was true.

The bar is raised even higher when the person in question is a public figure, which the bishop certainly is.

Rest assured that we receive copious amounts of free legal advice from qualified attorneys, that our insurance is current, and that none of your donations go, or will go, to any lawyers.

[74] Posted by Greg Griffith on 09-07-2007 at 01:58 PM • top

Perhaps we’re all making too much out of this?  I don’t see any reason why, as Sarah asserted, “The statement absolutely needed to be presented here at SF”.  We are not CNN and we are not the Judge in heaven.  We do not have to report on everything, and especially items whose veracity is still questionable.  Prudence is a virtue. 

Still, the SF gang has editorial control, and if they chose to run with it, fine.  It’s not our place to criticize; we are all free to refrain from commenting on the post if we feel it’s inappropriate.

Commenters should let it go, and the “staff” should stop trying so hard to justify it.

[75] Posted by Connecticutian on 09-07-2007 at 02:01 PM • top

Greg, Sarah, Jackie+, Matt+ et al—

Please understand that I do not take issue with your comments regarding what Orama reportedly said. I don’t even take issue with publication of the statement. I take issue with the publication of the statement without comfirming it. I do based on having taken a course in libel law while I was in journalism school and based on my experience as a newpaper editor and a wire service reporter. I don’t even ask that you take my word for it. I ask that you talk to a libel law attorney and find out what you can and cannot do. I do not want to lose SFIF.

I suggested that you take the other thread down. I did so because as long as it stays up, it compounds the libel (if indeed the publication of the statement is actionable). Somehow, some pretty bright people here don’t seem to get it.

But then, why should they, it’s not their necks on the line.

[76] Posted by Forgiven on 09-07-2007 at 02:03 PM • top

Thanks, Hosea!  I knew I had to be missing something-  Haven’t been following much of the stories, & “unfit for the episcopacy” sounded like a good miss.  I do appreciate the fill-in!

(Barely) still on subject, the reference to divorce and remarriage in context with Christ’s other sayings about it and in view both of the Greek grammar behind it and the overall picture of the Father’s heart in the nature of Jesus, pretty clearly is better read as “divorces his wife in order to marry another commits adultery.”  There’s really no reason to believe God has a special policy outside His holy love & righteous mercy, to prohibit a man from marriage or full participation in the Church because his wife turned around on him.  To hold to such an idea paints in our minds an arbitrary God more interested in appearances than the substance of our hearts and lives, and cripples the Church in more ways than we can even begin to list. We, as the Church, need to get free (NOT from actual morality, but) from the notion of the Bible as some kind of holy rule book in which the love of God is tucked away in some sub-heading. 

Back to the books!

Robert

[77] Posted by Robert Easter on 09-07-2007 at 02:03 PM • top

Irenaeus writes:

Liability for defamation is not the issue here. But for the record, when writing about a “public figure” (a concept that should include any sitting diocesan bishop), the First Amendment bars liability unless you knew that a statement was false or you acted in reckless disregard of its truth or falsity.

Not only that, but—if I’m not mistaken—malicious intent is the standard for public figures. 

The only person in all of this who might be in danger of a libel suit is the reporter himself, and even there I think it’d be a weak case.

Speaking as a non-attorney but one who writes books for a living, and has friends who have been (wrongly) sued for defamation many times over.

[78] Posted by Tom Head on 09-07-2007 at 02:04 PM • top

Folks,

Please lay off Matt, Greg, Sarah, et al. You all enjoyed commenting on the thread. Even though it appears that the ORIGINAL news report was false, the false report became real news when it was picked up on the liberal blogs. SFIF is about real news, so discussing it is AOK.

As such, it has served as a great “thought experiment” about the views of Nigeria, the reapraisers, us, etc.

Let’s give the blog masters at SFIF the freedom to do their jobs. If you don’t like that, get your own blog and don’t post anything until you’ve done all your original research yourself. That way you can talk about yesterday’s news after the rest of us have lost interest and moved on.

[79] Posted by Capn Jack Sparrow on 09-07-2007 at 02:08 PM • top

We simply reported what a reputable news agency reported

I don’t think this UPI is the UPI you’re thinking about. I noted this on the other thread, but I think you’re thinking about United Press International, the well-known and reputable global newswire service that went belly up in the late 70s or early 80s. As I understand it, this UPI is the media arm of the Church of Scientology, a less than credible organization.

Nonetheless…if the things you listed are all you have to be concerned about, the libel laws have, indeed, been loosened up. I am glad of that.

[80] Posted by Forgiven on 09-07-2007 at 02:10 PM • top

Been There… —You’re now being very silly, especially if you worked for AP. The whole reason for your employment was that your customers didn’t have to verify anything because they trusted you did your job and verified for them. That’s the fundamental reason for a wire service, so mom & pop papers that do not have resources could subscribe to your service and have a reputable, verified story without needing a staff to goto Mexico City or London or New York. So you demanding Greg do the job AP & UPI are supposed to do, if every paper did that why bother paying you?

[81] Posted by Hosea6:6 on 09-07-2007 at 02:11 PM • top

I suggested that you take the other thread down. I did so because as long as it stays up, it compounds the libel (if indeed the publication of the statement is actionable). Somehow, some pretty bright people here don’t seem to get it.

Taking down a thread doesn’t change anything. It’s a bell you can’t un-ring. Not just because thousands of people read it, but because it’s cached in search engines all over the internet.

Everyone, please do yourselves a favor and stop worrying about libel - it’s not an issue here.

[82] Posted by Greg Griffith on 09-07-2007 at 02:13 PM • top

Neal: “... one of the dangers in the ‘orthodox’ comment that I perceive is an unwillingness to self-critique.”

I dunno.  If this episode demonstrates anything useful—which to me is not self-evident—it might be that we orthodox tend to self-critique ourselves into a state of exhaustion.  (I, at any rate, am nearing exhaustion.  But then I’m a smoker…)

Self-criticism is fine and necessary; SF was quite right to put the story up and draw appropriate remonstrances from all and sundry.  But it’s over now.  Again, let’s give it (and ourselves) a rest.  SF has been up for at least four years now; if they haven’t yet learned to handle everything precisely and exactly as you (or I) would prefer, they are unlikely to do so now.

Thursday September 20 is less than two weeks away.  Husband your strength.  (Or wife it?  Gender-neutral language? ...)

[83] Posted by Craig Goodrich on 09-07-2007 at 02:15 PM • top

I first posted this on the wrong thread.  Mea Culpa.  Mea Culpa.
Been There -
First, I have to assume you didn’t read Greg’s post very carefully.  Let me give you a few quotes:

The blogs of the Episcopal left are positively humming with the news of a remark reportedly made by Bishop Isaac Orama of the Anglican Church of Nigeria:

Let’s remember that remarks do get mis-reported; I’ve seen it a dozen times in media coverage of business and other dealings of mine in the past, and anyone who’s ever been quoted in the media more than once or twice knows what I mean

But if the quote is accurate

but - if his remarks were accurately reported - he does not deserve to be a bishop in the Christian church.

While we can only wish that the MSM held to the ethics as you report were maintained during your tenure, it is sadly not the case. 
I think I speak for all of us here at Stand Firm when I say that we are very much aware of our responsibilities when posting on this blog.  I know I have spent weeks checking facts before releasing articles.  We move with caution when we are able.  We report with as much accuracy as we are humanly possible but we make mistakes like everyone else and when that happens, we apologize with as much humility as possible.

[84] Posted by JackieB on 09-07-2007 at 02:15 PM • top

Concerning his suggestion that an Anglican Bishop might actually support the imposition of capital punishment for sodomy, Dr. Tighe wrote,

“Probably in my orginal statement I should have written “might” rather than “could”—but I’m not sure that that would have averted the amusing outpouring of indignation that it seems to have evoked.”

AMUSING???
As the saying goes, there’s a ditch on both sides of the road. We’ve seen the ditch on the left —Spong, Schori, Robinson and the like have been wallowing in it for quite some time now—but today, regardless of what Bishop Orama did or didn’t say, Dr. Tighe has demonstrated the existance of the equally deep and noisome ravine running down the right side of the path.

God help you, Dr. Tighe.

[85] Posted by Cynthia Gee(AKA CJ/goldndog) on 09-07-2007 at 02:18 PM • top

Because I have spent the last month moving and settling into a new house and job, I have had little time to read the blogs.  However, I want to put my two cents in to say that I think both Kendall and Greg acted responsibly in condemning the statements they condemned in the manner in which they did, and for the reasons for which they condemned ithem.  Both Kendall and Greg qualified their repudiations by stating that If the bishop made the statements as reported . . . then the statements are repulsive, and the bishop should be disciplined.

Their statements do not qualify as libel by any stretch of the imagination.  Libel involves deliberate misrepresentation. Statements made, believing they are true, are not libel.  Comments on matters of public interest with honest belief of their truth is not libel.

As it turns out, the bishop has denied the statements, and it appears the reporter is going to apologize.  Thanks be to God. 

It is not Greg and Kendall who need to apologize but Fr. Jake, who jumped on the story and seems to have wanted it to be true to the point that he still refuses to back down.

At the same time, there is no way for the orthodox to come out winners in these situations.  Kendall early on was accused of trying to ignore the story.  When Matt not only condemned the statement, but pointed out the obvious hyprocisy of the liberal response, he himself was libeled on Jake’s site by being accused of agreeing with a statement he had disavowed, only to have Spong step in entirely on his own and confirm Matt’s original point. 

Our loyalty needs to be not to the team, but to the truth.  Those criticizing Greg and Kendall need to ask if they are criticizing them because they condemned a statement that, if true, no orthodox Christian should have made, or, if they are criticizing them for speaking out against a member of the team regardless of how egregious the statement, or whether they are criticizing them for believing that it was possible for a member of the team to have committed such an egregious offense. 

Any of the above three options is unacceptable.  The statement as reported was offensive, and needed to be repudiated.  That the alleged speaker was on our team does not provide an excuse.  That orthodox Christians are sadly capable of egregious behavior is, unfortunately, an unpleasant reality.

That it now turns out that the reporter misrepresented the bishop exacerbates the egregiousness of the offensive statements, but it does not somehow make Kendall or Greg complicit in the reporter’s offense, or make the original statement less offensive.

[86] Posted by William Witt on 09-07-2007 at 02:20 PM • top

My dear Dr. Witt,
It is rare indeed that I take exception to something you write but, alas, the day is here.  I am still trembling at the thought and had to take a few minutes to compose myself so that I may adequately address you without stepping beyond the bounds of civilized society.  What exactly did you mean by this remark? 

I have had little time to read the blogs. 

Good heavens, man.  There is always room for Stand Firm.  Consider a time management course.  Maybe give up something less necessary in your life - like sleep.  Remember.  Prioritize.  Prioritize.  smile

[87] Posted by JackieB on 09-07-2007 at 02:34 PM • top

I’ll give you a hint ... “Associated Press” and “United Press.” If you did work for AP, then you’d understand UPI is the competitor and liable for the reporting and why it was their responsibility to verify the story.

One more time for you Hosea. United Press International went belly up in the late 70s or early 80s. They did so because they were a private newswire service and could not compete with the AP which is an association of newpapers and broadcast media who agree to share their stories with the AP in return for the AP service. They pay be fee for the service based on their circulation or broadcast audience.

And, we did not verify or confirm our stories because of the competition…we did so to stay out of court.

[88] Posted by Forgiven on 09-07-2007 at 02:39 PM • top

What if Orama’s just one of those Evangelicals who take a Levitical point of view? Or imagine a hypothetical Evangelical who follows Leviticus. Wouldn’t such an individual support the death penalty for things like bestiality, adultery, incest and sodomy? Are we right to blame him?

[89] Posted by henryleroi on 09-07-2007 at 02:51 PM • top

Been There ...

It must have late ‘80s or early ‘90s for both I remember both teletypes going strong in the “H” St office and my dad moved out of National Press Building to “H” ST mid-80s but bumped around to ending up in my old room in the early nineties by late ‘80s girls were much more interesting than visiting dad at the office.

I gave him a call about journalistic ethics (Medill grad and in the industry since ‘55, he was laid-off at age of 71 but still writes a short bit for a monthly newsletter (since ‘55 and still gets the $35 he was always been paid). His didn’t want to give any sort of comment of about the web publishing at all, but in the context of a mom & pop paper he said the most verifying they could do is call UPI, which he predicted would stand behind their reporter unless proven otherwise and the important thing is first the immediate retraction (which both SF & T19 gave) and secondly is the conditional language of both “if this is true than.” His immediate comment is how this happens all the time in politics.

Based on journalism, the largest risk is loosing access, but some how I don’t imagine CoN refusing access SF & T19 and going over to be a source for Jake.

[90] Posted by Hosea6:6 on 09-07-2007 at 03:03 PM • top

henry,

I don’t know of any hypothetical “Evangelicals who take a Levitical point of view” and thus believe that states should execute those who practice the sexual sins you mentioned. Do you know of any?

[91] Posted by Capn Jack Sparrow on 09-07-2007 at 03:35 PM • top

i>AP. The whole reason for your employment was that your customers didn’t have to verify anything because they trusted you did your job and verified for them.</i>

Wrong!!! Hosea, you seem to have a good amateur’s working knowledge of the AP but a total lack of understanding.

As I indicated above the AP was an association (you know, “Associated” Press) of newspapers and broadcast media who, by belonging to the association agreed to share their news with others in the association. The AP is the conduit through which that news was exchanged. In addition, the AP had staff edior/reporters who covered eventsin person and then shared those reports with the members of the association. When working as an editor, you spent most of your day, taking telephone calls from association reporters in the field who were obligated to share their news with other members of the association. Those people in the field (called “stringers) worked for large newspapers, small newspapers and radio and television stations. They would provide the editor on the desk with the who, what, where, when, why and how then we would take that information and write it into a story and put it on the wire. We assumed that the stories were verified when they we called in to us. We only attempted to verify when the story had a “red flag” that caused us to ask questions. If that occured we would go directly to the source to confirm or clear up the question.
When we received hard copy from the newspapers where our offices were located, we ALWAYS rewrote those stories to conform to AP style.

In those days, AP prided itself on accuracy and we had a slogan “accuracy before speed,” though speed was extremely important. We competed directly against UPI and we gave them no quarter. And, they gave us no quarter. And yeah, most of our members had confidence in the accuracy of our stuff.

It was rare that UPI ever beat us with a story. In the first place they didn’t have the staff. They had three guys/gals and we had 12 reporter/editors plus a bureau chief and an assitant bureau chief. We had two editors on the desk from 8 a.m. until 10 p.m., one editor from 3 a.m. until 8 a.m. and one editor from 10 p.m. until midnight.
UPI worked from 9 a.m. until 10 p.m. but they had one bureau chief and two editor/reporters. The editor/reporters also served as teletype operators while we had a five-person traffic staff with a teletype operator on duty as long as an editor was on duty.

“The whole reason for my employment” was to get the news out to our members as fast as we could and as accurately as we could. We ran a 10-minute radio split every hour in which we added statewide news to the news that was moving on the national radio wire. The radio wire was filed separately from the news wire and written in broadcast style. It also had speed and accuracy requirements.

On days when we were not working the desk, we were available to cover stories in person. If it was a scheduled day off, we were paid overtime to cover the story in person.

During the legislative session, my main responsibility was to cover the state senate. We had desks for AP, UPI, two major state dailies and one weekly newspaper. These desks were arranged in from of the Senate president’s platform facing out toward the senators. When a bill was passed, we had direct line telephones to our offices and we dictated the story to the desk and had in on the wires in minutes after passage. A copy of the story was passed to the broadcast wire editor who rewrote it and added it to the copy for the next split. At the end of the day, we wrote a summary roundup of what had happened in the house and another of what happened in the senate. Those stories were for morning newspapers. Then we re-wrote those stories for afternoon newspapers.

During my tenure, I was on a first name basis with the governor and his staff; the Attorney General and his staff virtually all of the State Senators and most of the house members. I worked with some of the finest newswriters in the world. I broke stories on the third kidney transplant in the nation, I covered a visit by John F. Kennedy a month before he was assassinated, I did local color on Kennedy following his assassination and I covered most of the leaders of the civil rights movement. Shortly after I left AP to go into PR, they called me back to cover the explosion of a Titan II Missile silo which was ungoing refurbishing. Some 24 workers were killed and my pictures were on the front pages of most of the newspapers in the world.

Yeah…while you may doubt me Hosea, I was there and I was, at one time the lead story in the libel section in the AP handbook because, it happened to me as well.

So there and LOL

Greg says they’ve got everything covered and that’s good enough for me.

[92] Posted by Forgiven on 09-07-2007 at 03:38 PM • top

Uh NO henryleroi…where have you been the last 4 years…or for the last 2000…the shellfish argument is so badly dated. I took on Scotus when he tried to pull the same rediculous trick out of the same tired hat:

http://anglicanscotist.blogspot.com/2007/09/bishop-oramas-courageous-biblical.html

http://anglicanscotist.blogspot.com/2007/09/debating-law-into-fray.html

[93] Posted by Matt Kennedy on 09-07-2007 at 03:40 PM • top

Capn Jack: I’m not an Evangelical, but I do know Evangelicals who espouse the Levitical position. There are obvious problems with the Levitical position except, of course, for the Council of Jerusalem where porneia as described in Leviticus 18 remains forbidden and, presumably, just punishable in the same way. It’s important to remember that this was the view throughout Christendom up until the mid-19th Century. Two centuries this October, a lieutenant in Nelson’s Navy was executed for sodomy.

We shrink from capital punishment, but any felony including petty theft would lead to the gallows until sometime middle of the 19th Century. Some of this is Leviticus.

[94] Posted by henryleroi on 09-07-2007 at 03:46 PM • top

Been There ... we’re both SO off topic, but this has so little to do with what getting under Greg’s skin, we may be safe.

I think they may have change some thing recently, for <a ref=“http://www.ap.org/pages/product/buyapnews.html”>this page</a> is why I thought they were subscription like UP was in the day. I had a friend who did subscribe during ‘01 for 9/11 news (web developer who often would do things just because he could). Then AP was affected with the adjustment to the web based (free news verses on web verse the paid paper—dad had two ‘horses’ go down trying to cope with that).

[95] Posted by Hosea6:6 on 09-07-2007 at 03:48 PM • top

My < a href thingie didn’t work ... ah insert below link at “this page”

http://www.ap.org/pages/product/buyapnews.html

[96] Posted by Hosea6:6 on 09-07-2007 at 03:51 PM • top

One more time for you Hosea. United Press International went belly up in the late 70s or early 80s.

You’ll have a field day with the UPI, then. They actually claim they are the same 1907 UP, merged with International News Svc in 1958. And it’s the Moonies, not CoS that indirectly own them.

Your facts are either a little off or the current UPI is lying through their teeth. There’s a good fraud case to pursue.

UPI never went belly-up. UPI sold itself at pennies on the dollar, but that’s a far cry from belly up, unless you claim Chrysler and US Steel no longer exist and are entirely different companies because they have new owners. Same product, same place, same people, just new owners with a new management style.

[97] Posted by Antique on 09-07-2007 at 03:51 PM • top

Yeah, but my new cell phone says AT&T;... but it’s not “Ma Bell” ... I’m so confused ...

[98] Posted by Hosea6:6 on 09-07-2007 at 03:54 PM • top

i>It must have late ‘80s or early ‘90s for both I remember both teletypes going strong in the “H” St office and my dad moved out of National Press Building to “H” ST mid-80s </i>

We’re kinda off topic and ought to do this on email but are you saying that your dad was with UPI in the late 80s, early 90s. I think you may have your dates wrong because surely UPI was out of teletypes and into computers by then.

I left AP in 1965 after three years and within a couple of years after my departures AP started converting to computer operations. It took about three years to make the full conversion and at that time they laid all the teletype operators off because everything was moving by direct computer links. All the old teletypes were gone by 1968. In fact, they gave me a brand new one which I carried around for years until I canabalized it in the early 80s. I gotta believe that UPI could not have been far behind because the computer operations were so much more cost effective.

I had a close friend who was the UPI Bureau Chief, who was laid off in mid 1970 when they closed his office. He became a college professor teaching journalism in my old journalism school. I cannot say precisely when they folded but I suspect its on Wikipedia and I’ll lok it up when I get done here. I know they went into and out of receivership at least once before they finally shut it down.

I also don’t know if the Church of Scientology bought the remnant or whether it just started using the UPI after United Press went under.

In any case, I done with this thread ‘cause Greg seems to think he’s in the clear. Email me if you want to talk more about this.

[99] Posted by Forgiven on 09-07-2007 at 03:59 PM • top

Capn Jack Sparrow:
“I don’t know of any hypothetical “Evangelicals who take a Levitical point of view” and thus believe that states should execute those who practice the sexual sins you mentioned. Do you know of any?”

Cap’n Jack, they’re called Reconstructionists or Dominionists, and they believe that the Old Testament Law is still in effect and should be the model for modern civil law, complete with the death penalty for sodomy, adultery, heresy, incorrigibility (for teenage boys), and impurity before marriage (for teenage girls). They tend to believe that welfare, social security, and government funded schools should be abolished; they believe that only landowners should vote; many also believe that debtor slavery is biblical and should be reinstituted. Not surprisingly, these nutjobs have their widest following in the southern states and among white supremicists and libertarians.

The movement started with John Rousas Rushdoony and his son in law Gary North,  and has spread throughout the Religious Right. It is most prevalent among Baptist and Calvinist denominations, but is spreading into the Anglican Communion and even into the Catholic Church.
Google Rushdoony, Gary North, Pat Robertson, Howard Phillips, or Steve Wilkins, and read up.

[100] Posted by Cynthia Gee(AKA CJ/goldndog) on 09-07-2007 at 04:03 PM • top

Fr. Matt:

It’s really like having to teach that “some English words, like ‘have’ don’t obey phonics rules” over and over again to the same audience… only to finish and have someone say, “Why can’t we say “hAvE???”

Totally frustrating - and you do begin to wonder, after awhile, whether it is because the children are NOT listening OR whether they choose not to hear OR whether they might be not capable of learning information in the first place.

So, Matt - don’t know what to tell you - I guess the answer for the non-comprehension has to lie in one of those explanations.

[101] Posted by Eclipse on 09-07-2007 at 04:05 PM • top

+Matt:  “It appears that a Nigerian bishop may have (if the report is accurate) said some reprehensible things about those who engage in homosexual behavior:

Greg:  “If the quote is not accurate…”

“But if the quote is accurate

“Bishop Orama deserves our prayers that he might come to understand this, but - if his remarks were accurately reported - he does not deserve to be a bishop in the Christian church.”

Canon Harmon:  “I was very disgusted, upset and saddened to read the statement of Bishop Isaac Orama as quoted by the News Agency of Nigeria in a UPI story who, (if he is quoted accurately, and I am assuming that he is) said that persons involved in same sex behavior “are insane, satanic and are not fit to live.”

My last post.  Yes Matt, I see the difference for what the liberal revisionists have to apologize for.  I fully concur with you.  I also posted the qualifiers that you all issued.  (One of them seems a bit more presumptuous than the others).  Given your explanations, I think I can understand where y’all are coming from as far as a non-apology.  Fine with that.  However, I do commend Scruff’s comment on the other thread as something to ponder.

Peace and Blessings.  Have a wonderful weekend.

Your Partner for His Truth and Love

[102] Posted by Truth Unites... and Divides on 09-07-2007 at 04:06 PM • top

Dad work for a Fairchild publication not UPI, bad news they still had old teletype wire feed with roll paper at the other end (I maybe wrong on the name, but the same machines as the news came in as shown in <u>Good Morning Vietnam</u>). Then computers didn’t enter his office till mid to late eighties, he wrote on an Underwood typewriter ... but you didn’t ask what he covered ... oh the electronics industry and cutting edge computers and semiconductors.

[103] Posted by Hosea6:6 on 09-07-2007 at 04:07 PM • top

Ooops!  My bad!!  Wrong thread.  Very sorry!

[104] Posted by Truth Unites... and Divides on 09-07-2007 at 04:09 PM • top

It’s perhaps true that, although the criticism was qualified as an assumption pending proof, it should have been much more gentle and cautious until proved. That’s largely a matter of balance and good consistent balance is hard to achieve. Ordinarily the T19/SFIF people are very good at it; they should get full credit for the times they didn’t and won’t miss. Besides, maybe the full truth isn’t known yet?

And racist??? Would the reaction have been the same if the story involved a non-African? Not every thing which involves Africans is racist!!

BTW: The current UPI website is http://www.upi.com/. They claim continuous operation since 1907.

In faith, Dave
Viva Texas

[105] Posted by dpeirce on 09-07-2007 at 04:10 PM • top

goldndog

And WHERE did you read or hear this?  Was it like in a spy novel???

Coming from an extremely conservative Baptist background, having actually READ some of Roberson’s stuff - I have NEVER EVER IN MY ENTIRE EXPERIENCE heard of a Christian exposing that stuff.  EVER - not even a fictional account - not even in a Peretti book with the demon ‘Religiosity’ looking over your shoulder.

I even have family who are enamored with following a Jewish form of Christianity (adhering to many of the OT rules) and none of THEM have ever espoused such a view.

I think this must be another ‘theory’ run amok amongst the left.

[106] Posted by Eclipse on 09-07-2007 at 04:11 PM • top

Now TU&D;we’re busy trying to distract you by talking about AP & UPI and corporate buyout, so you don’t continue to harp on this subject ...

Can I give you a hint ...

When Greg starts commenting like he has, when Matt seems a bit worn ... when you are making comments about members who run this site or Cannon Harmon ... I’ve seen this before ... it’s usually just before dire things happen!

Truth Unites… and Divides - it may be best to put away the velvet hammer for other hammers here are not so soft!

[107] Posted by Hosea6:6 on 09-07-2007 at 04:16 PM • top

Eclipse, I’m well aware of Dominionism.  It IS out there.  Do a little googling and you will find plenty of info.

[108] Posted by Lorian on 09-07-2007 at 04:16 PM • top

UPI never went belly-up. UPI sold itself at pennies on the dollar, but that’s a far cry from belly up

If that’s what happened, I missed it. I remember when they closed the office where a close friend worked and I know they went into receivership. I did not know the moonies bought the remnant as noted above. What’s the name of the Moony Church, I thought it was the Church of Scientology, but I realize now that that’s that other guy?

I stand corrected. But I maintain that the UPI being operated by the Moonies is nowhere close to as credible as the old UPI, despite their acknowledging their roots back to 1907.

The Bell and Howell Company used to make great movie projectors. They’re still in operation but now they make novelties which do not approach the quality of the old liine Bell & Howell Company.

[109] Posted by Forgiven on 09-07-2007 at 04:19 PM • top

UPI (http://www.upi.com) FYI about going “belly-up” and who purchased them:
1982 - Scripps family sells UPI
1985 - UPI enters bankruptcy for the first time and is purchased out of bankruptcy the next year by Mexican publisher Mario Vazquez Rana.
1988 - Vazquez sells UPI’s assets to Earl Brian’s Infotech Inc.
1991 - UPI is purchased out of its second bankruptcy by a group of Saudi investors.
2000 - News World Communications, a media group founded by the Rev. Sun Myung Moon that includes The Washington Times newspaper, purchases UPI.
2007 - UPI celebrates its 100th year.

[110] Posted by fsbill on 09-07-2007 at 04:31 PM • top

Dr Tighe,

(I myself have an emotional aversion towards the death penalty, both as it is an irrevocable penalty and from my own melancholy sense of the tragedy of life and the manner in which almost anyone can become entrammeled in evil unawares [as it seems], but if one accepts the legitimacy of the death penalty for any offenses, or any offenses other, perhaps, than deliberate murder, I do not see any reason why such a penalty would be inappropriate for sexual offenses.)

Probably in my orginal statement I should have written “might” rather than “could”—but I’m not sure that that would have averted the amusing outpouring of indignation that it seems to have evoked.

I don’t know what’s amusing about thinking that capital punishment for sodomy is a pretty absurd and brutal idea. This particular sodomite is bizarrely attached to life, and I find the idea about as enticing as a turkey finds thanksgiving. But I’m happy to have given you a chuckle, and glad that you agree (as, to their credit, everyone here seems to, some without even canvassing alternative viewpoints) that I am fit to live even if—as you seem to think—reasonable Christians might disagree.

[111] Posted by Paul Stanley on 09-07-2007 at 04:31 PM • top

Actually, Eclipse, stuff like goldndog posted is available with a little searching into the conspiratorially minded regions of the internet.  My favorite bit is how the tinfoil hat types who believe this stuff have decided Hillary Clinton is a “Christianist” mole secretly leading us into a theocracy, due to her connection with some groups that have some connection with some people they think are connected to, or might be, “Christianists” like the celebrated Rushdoony.  As is typical of such odd obsessions, there are some actual facts from her books and the press underpinning their theories, selectively chosen and strung together with assumptions.  Even National Journal mentioned some of them at some point.  (Including, if you look for it, her connection to CANA, which in the minds of the tinfoil-hatted probably proves the whole thing.)

[112] Posted by pendennis88 on 09-07-2007 at 04:34 PM • top

goldndog, You are right that there is such a person as Rushdoony, and the “Kingdom Theology” he espouses does exist.  However, your

and they
believe that the Old Testament Law is still in effect and should be the
model for modern civil law, complete with the death penalty for sodomy,
adultery, heresy, incorrigibility (for teenage boys), and impurity before
marriage (for teenage girls). They tend to believe that welfare, social
security, and government funded schools should be abolished; they believe
that only landowners should vote; many also believe that debtor slavery is
biblical and should be reinstituted. Not surprisingly, these nutjobs have
their widest following in the southern states and among white supremicists
and libertarians.

looks like a pretty broad brush for just one hand to be slinging.  I take it “they” are all the same shape, size and color, also, eh?  It especially concerns me that you consign “these nutjobs” primarily to the “southern states and among white supremacists,” as if the three just somehow fit as a natural unit.  I’m afraid I can’t say what this sound like without breaking the rules of polite conversation, but I do wonder how extensive your research has been to have come up with such definitive results.

[113] Posted by Robert Easter on 09-07-2007 at 04:49 PM • top

Lorian :

True, and with a little research you can find that Alien Reptiles are dominating the world and the US orchestrated the Twin Towers terror attack AND the Apollo missions were faked and the holocost was a hoax.

I suppose what annoyed me is what Robert Easter pointed out - Not that some weird people believe that, but that “the Religious Right, Baptists and some Anglicans” believe that.  It’s ridiculous, untrue and has not a jot of bearing in reality.

I might as well state that “some” in the religious left, including TEC,  believe in Nazism since Charles Lindberg did and of course he was a PROGRESSIVE!

[114] Posted by Eclipse on 09-07-2007 at 05:04 PM • top

“This particular sodomite is bizarrely attached to life ...”

No doubt, and so are paedophiles, rapists, murderers and traitors.  And your point is?

(Btw, *my* point is, that just as it would be absurd to punish an alcoholic or a kleptomaniac or a pyromaniac for his or her unfortunate condition, the same considerations would not apply to a drunkard, a thief or an arsonist.  The problem here is that some people use the word “sodomite” [or “queer”] to denote a condition or “orientation” whereas it is more normally used to denote someone who actually practices the perverse and unnatural behaviour associated with that term.  The charitable assumption is that my interlocutor is employing it in the former, improper sense, for to assume the latter would be to assume that he is boasting of a behavior of which St. Paul wrote that even the gentiles are ashamed.  My “amusement,” however, came of seeing the indignation of those whose very indignation betrays either an almost
total ignorance of the history of Christian jurisprudence and penology or else a mental confusion of Libertarianism with Christianity—a confusion of subjects so dissimilar as that to match them is as risible a concept as an imagined mating of a moose and a mouse.)

[115] Posted by William Tighe on 09-07-2007 at 05:04 PM • top

There will be one warning and one warning only.

Get on topic.  NOW.

[116] Posted by commenatrix on 09-07-2007 at 05:32 PM • top

“Eclipse, I’m well aware of Dominionism.  It IS out there.  Do a little googling and you will find plenty of info.”

Thank you, Lorian. Dominionism is quite real, unfortunately; and, like the devils in Lewis’s Screwtape Letters, it serves their purpose very well when their opponents choose to discount their existence or write them off as the imaginings of the tinfoil hat crowd. Conspiracy theorists have a lot to say about Dominionism, certainly,  but you can get the real facts straight from the Reconstructionist horses’ mouths, or use wikipedia or any number of other internet sources to learn the facts about this movement:
http://www.natreformassn.org/statesman/03/stndisob.html
(scroll to the bottom of the page for the text)
http://www.biblicalexaminer.org/w199709.htm
http://www.preterism-eschatology.com/Daughters and Marriage.htm
http://buriedtreasurebooks.com/weblog/?p=1907#comments
http://www.splcenter.org/intel/intelreport/article.jsp?pid=432
http://cynthiagee.blogspot.com/2007/06/behind-hyperpatriarchs-new-links.html

[117] Posted by Cynthia Gee(AKA CJ/goldndog) on 09-07-2007 at 05:42 PM • top

Dr. Tighe,

My point is that your post suggested that it could be defensible for a Christian to advocate capital punishment for sodomy. With that view I profoundly disagree.

Your response was that while you did not personally approve of such a punishment (on, it seems, emotional grounds) you think that it IS a defensible position, and you found my taking umbrage at it amusing.

Your point has now changed. It now seems that while you would forgive me punishment for my inclinations (thanks!) you DO consider that punishment (capital punishment!) is potentially justifiable, or theologically defensible, for the act of sodomy, and “offense” which you equate with with rape, murder, pedophilia and treason ... though oddly also with theft and drunken misbehavior.

Let me be quite clear. I understand perfectly well the distinction you draw between orientation and practice, and when I said “sodomite” I used my words advisedly, as I am sure you know.

As I understand it, then, you DO think that a Christian MIGHT (your word) properly regard sodomy as a capital offense. That, in short, a Christian could legitimately believe that a person who commits sodomy does not deserve to live. For my part, I regard that as an utterly indefensible statement. I would respectfully invite you to disavow it in clear terms. It’s really quite simple: No Christian could regard capital punishment as a legitimate response to consensual sodomy between adults. End of story.

[118] Posted by Paul Stanley on 09-07-2007 at 05:43 PM • top

Commenatrix,

Sorry, I posted that before I saw your post. I hope you will forgive the response. I hope you will understand why I posted it.

[119] Posted by Paul Stanley on 09-07-2007 at 05:44 PM • top

“There will be one warning and one warning only.
Get on topic.  NOW.”
Sorry. I started writing my last comment before your comment, (above) showed up.  But I’ll drop the subject, no problem.

[120] Posted by Cynthia Gee(AKA CJ/goldndog) on 09-07-2007 at 05:47 PM • top

Since I have been forbidden to respond (if I understand the commentatrix properly) I will not, but I fail to see why one cannot respond to attacks in the form of questions.

[121] Posted by William Tighe on 09-07-2007 at 05:53 PM • top

Uh NO henryleroi…where have you been the last 4 years…or for the last 2000…the shellfish argument is so badly dated. I took on Scotus when he tried to pull the same rediculous trick out of the same tired hat:

http://anglicanscotist.blogspot.com/2007/09/bishop-oramas-courageous-biblical.html

http://anglicanscotist.blogspot.com/2007/09/debating-law-into-fray.html

No, Matt, the Council of Jerusalem is not a shellfish argument. Far as I can tell, there’s no mention of shellfish in those original impermissibles. Porneia is included by name and porneia as understood by the Council surely represented the impermissibles in Leviticus 18, for which some kind of horrible death was the usual form of punishment.

Some Envangelicals bind themselves directly to Leviticus, other church tradition types bind themselves to parts of the Old Law through the Council of Jerusalem. There is, moreover, the univocal voice of Church Tradition. Reason, in Hooker’s sense, is ordinary natural law theory and stands equally opposed to homosexuality. The legal remedies since Henry VIII through the mid-19th Century contemplated extreme measures of criminal punishment. Again, England executed near 50 people for sodomy in the 19th Century. Nelson’s Navy executed one of its lieutenant’s in October 1807, just two years after Trafalgar. These criminal sanctions flowed from the sense that sodomy was an extreme form of sacriledge.

We may have grown squeamish about application of the death penalty, but when the death penalty was considered acceptable, the same English civilization that first freed their slaves continued to execute homosexuals for sodomy so long as the death penalty had not yet begun repugnant to the public sensibility. Sodomy is no less objectionable than it was, it’s just our sense of the appropriateness of the death penalty as punishment for any form of crime has changed. We’re reluctant to execute convicted murderers, but we still consider murder a capital crime.

[122] Posted by henryleroi on 09-07-2007 at 06:07 PM • top

Not sure what you are arguing against henryleroi, but I am all for the death penalty and the Jerusalem council was definitely referring to Lev. 18…not sure what you are arguing against

[123] Posted by Anne Kennedy on 09-07-2007 at 09:01 PM • top

Hold on - let’s not be “twisting” ourselves. 

I wouldn’t wait too long for the apology.
The Bishops statements did not come out of thin air, it’s clear the reporter simply twisted them.


What I read was

UPI distributes certain third party submissions from official government news agencies, such as this article. Since UPI does not control the material included in these submissions, UPI does not guarantee the accuracy, integrity or quality of the material in such submissions, and UPI does not endorse any of the views or opinions expressed therein.

It was not the reporter, but the government that actually made the misrepresentation.

[124] Posted by Gigs Girl on 09-07-2007 at 09:03 PM • top

Canon Kendall Harmon wrote his words based on a faulty assumption. . . There was a premature rush to judgment.

Pretty common practice here I have noticed.  Haven’t we learned yet what assume makes out of u and me.  I believe that it was St. Paul who advised us to not rejoice in another’s wrong doing.  (Somehow I have always believed that he meant for us not to be happy that we were right when we expected a bad result.)  Where is the LOVE???  Or do we reserve that for our “own kind?”  This would make us better, how?

[125] Posted by Gigs Girl on 09-07-2007 at 09:12 PM • top

Where’s the even handedness?  Where’s the logic?  How is this compatible with the core assumption that faith in Christ is the CENTRAL aspect of Christianity?  How is this not racially discriminatory in its attitudes?  How is it not onesided in the kind of deviations from the Christian faith involved?

It is discriminatory, but not racial, it is revisionists v. orthodox discriminatory.  Has nothing to do with race, ethnicity or citizenship, except from the originator of the article - now what does that tell us about the Nigerian government???  When are WE going to learn to be equally as discriminating about the information that comes from OUR OWN government?

Both sides seem to have their tongues out waiting for such remarks on which to chew.  What do the Scriptures say about the tongue?

[126] Posted by Gigs Girl on 09-07-2007 at 09:44 PM • top

Haven’t we learned yet what assume makes out of u and me.  I believe that it was St. Paul who advised us to not rejoice in another’s wrong doing

Where is the LOVE???  Or do we reserve that for our “own kind?” This would make us better, how?


Thank you Nana1938.

[127] Posted by Forgiven on 09-07-2007 at 10:15 PM • top

G’Night all. I trully hope you all have an exceptional weekend.

[128] Posted by Forgiven on 09-07-2007 at 10:20 PM • top

Sorry if posting this here is wrong but I have been Banned by Jake™.

The Bishop of Uyo “denied making such a statement,” Canon Popoola said. While the bishop’s address to his diocesan synod did speak to the issue of human sexuality dividing the Communion, and the Church of Nigeria’s position on these issues, “he did not say that [gays and lesbians] are to be hated, nor that they are insane or unfit to live.”

The Bishop of Uyo denied it, Popoola is merely relaying that information. But yet Jake still comes out with:

I’ll try to keep you informed if and when more information becomes available regarding this questionable denial.

And Jake is still harping about this:

He also just recently claimed, in regards to the interest in Abp. Akinola’s ghost writers, that “Canon Chris Sugden…had nothing to do with the document.” If one takes a look at the actual document, it is quite obvious that Archdeacon Popoola’s statement is simply untrue.

A flat out inaccuracy if there ever was one. Popoola gave a response concerning the allegation that the CONTENT wasn’t Akinola’s.
The full line is:

I would have believed the ‘computer software’ story were it not for the allegation of ‘minor amendments’ by the Canon Chris Sugden who had nothing to do with the document.


Again, not that you can tell accurately anything about who actually typed this letter from the tracking changes but is does clearly show whoever was typing as Sugden made no amendments but simply corrected some grammatical errors.

Popoola is THE spokesman for the Church of Nigeria, any statements made will come through him. How long does Jake think he can keep this “shoot the messenger” bit up and still seem credible?
He must become apoplectic whenever Tony Snow makes a statement.

[129] Posted by Rocks on 09-07-2007 at 11:08 PM • top

Nana1938 said

It was not the reporter, but the government that actually made the misrepresentation.

We can only assume this is humor.  If not, you are seriously in left field and if that’s the case, keep your eyes open for Jake.

[130] Posted by JackieB on 09-07-2007 at 11:16 PM • top

As one who was horrified by, rather than “rejoicing” in Bishop Orama’s reported comment, I’d be glad and grateful to see it truthfully and convincingly retracted.  I’d very much like to believe that a Bishop in the Anglican Communion does not wish me dead.

[131] Posted by Lorian on 09-07-2007 at 11:21 PM • top

Hi Tom Head—I enjoyed your posts.  Thank you for the even-handedness.

Blessings,
Pat

[132] Posted by Pat Kashtock on 09-07-2007 at 11:37 PM • top

Lorian, you’re just a little behind on this one. The Good Bishop didn’t threaten you. Sorry.

In faith, Dave
Viva Texas

[133] Posted by dpeirce on 09-08-2007 at 12:10 AM • top

Jacki,
. . . and what was it that I misunderstood about this:

UPI distributes certain third party submissions from official government news agencies, such as this article.

[134] Posted by Gigs Girl on 09-08-2007 at 12:44 AM • top

and some Anglicans” believe that.  It’s ridiculous, untrue and has not a jot of bearing in reality.

wow!  and I might as well say that there are “Anglicans” who deny the triune God, the virgin birth, and the resurrection.  Perish the thought.  There are indeed those who believe such things and one of them who received the same trash sheets as the man who blew up the Murrah building.  Putrid, disgusting stuff.  He said to my face, whether they were his children or not, they should be shot, along with Jews who run all the banks and Blacks.  Better open your eyes and quick!

[135] Posted by Gigs Girl on 09-08-2007 at 01:05 AM • top

We may have grown squeamish about application of the death penalty,

?Squeamish?  Did God pronounce the death penalty on Cain, Moses or David?

[136] Posted by Gigs Girl on 09-08-2007 at 01:19 AM • top

1982 - Scripps family sells UPI
1985 - UPI enters bankruptcy for the first time and is purchased out of bankruptcy the next year by Mexican publisher Mario Vazquez Rana.
1988 - Vazquez sells UPI’s assets to Earl Brian’s Infotech Inc.
1991 - UPI is purchased out of its second bankruptcy by a group of Saudi investors.
2000 - News World Communications, a media group founded by the Rev. Sun Myung Moon that includes The Washington Times newspaper, purchases UPI.
2007 - UPI celebrates its 100th year.


fsbill

Thank you so much for posting this. It’s very helpful for me and one or two others. don’t thaink many really care but i do appreciate it.

[137] Posted by Forgiven on 09-08-2007 at 01:27 AM • top

Nan1938,
Being the official news reporting agency for a government does not mean that the government released this story.  Unfortunately, the news reporter who was responsible for the story misrepresented/misunderstood/misquoted (take your pick) the facts - hence the apology and offer of a retraction.

[138] Posted by JackieB on 09-08-2007 at 08:14 AM • top

When confronted with the statement that someone is unfit for life, to remain silent would not be a virtue, it would be wrong.  I am proud of the way SF handled the story.  Thank you, Greg and Matt.

[139] Posted by Jill Woodliff on 09-08-2007 at 08:16 AM • top

Lorian, you’re just a little behind on this one. The Good Bishop didn’t threaten you. Sorry.

Perhaps this has been established to your satisfaction.  Personally, I’m waiting to hear the good bishop issue a written denial and an expression of Godly love towards gays and lesbians.

[140] Posted by Lorian on 09-08-2007 at 11:40 AM • top

Lorian: So, if he doesn’t apologize to your satisfaction for something he didn’t say, you’ll still hold it against him?

In faith, Dave
Viva Texas

[141] Posted by dpeirce on 09-08-2007 at 11:54 AM • top

“So, if he doesn’t apologize to your satisfaction for something he didn’t say, you’ll still hold it against him? “

Dave, a written denial is not an apology for something one has not said; rather, it’s a declaration that one didn’t say it in the first place.

This has been an interesting thread, and sad in a way.
Lewis relates a hypothetical situation:
“Suppose one reads a story of filthy atrocities in the paper. Then suppose that something turns up suggesting that the story might not be quite true, or not quite so bad as it was made out. Is one’s first feeling, “Thank God, even they aren’t quite so bad as that, or is it a feeling of disappointment, and even a determination to cling to the first story for the sheer pleasure of thinking your enemies as bad as possible?”

It appears that Orama may not be as “bad as all that” and I for one am glad that that may be the case; however this thread has shown that some Anglicans really ARE as bad as all that, and look with amusement upon those of us who are horrified that anyone would judge ANY fellow human being as being unfit to live.

[142] Posted by Cynthia Gee(AKA CJ/goldndog) on 09-08-2007 at 01:54 PM • top

Jacki,
Exactly what does
“Being the official news reporting agency for a government” mean to you?
You know, it seems to me that the rapidity with which the end reporter made his apology is quite different from what we see here.  Why is it that we would consider him insincere, but we are sincere?  What is it about us that causes us to make those kinds of judgments about others while excusing our own “rush to judgment” behavior?

[143] Posted by Gigs Girl on 09-08-2007 at 02:11 PM • top

Lorian: So, if he doesn’t apologize to your satisfaction for something he didn’t say, you’ll still hold it against him?

Dave, where did you see me ask him to “apologize?”  I asked that he disavow the statement in writing, and complete the statement with an expression of his true feelings, if they are in fact contradictory to the statement as originally reported.  I would find such a statement far more convincing than the 2nd- or 3rd-hand, five-days-late, perfunctory verbal dismissal issued to date.

[144] Posted by Lorian on 09-08-2007 at 03:22 PM • top

Nana1938, perhaps the fact that the reporter lives in a nation where personal sexual behavior (and even freely associating in a non-sexual context with someone whose sexual orientation conflicts with the statute) is a criminal offense punishable with imprisonment, is sufficient cause for a reporter who has overstepped his permissions or safety-zone to immediately bow to pressure and retract his previous report?  It’s not quite like this country, where the 4th Estate enjoys the sorts of legal protections which allow it something approaching true autonomy.

[145] Posted by Lorian on 09-08-2007 at 03:26 PM • top

Lorian: Asking for a written denial and an expression of Godly love for homosexuals sounded to me like asking for an apology. Actually,+Orama has already made a denial through the press office of the Nigerian Anglican Church. If I remember, something also was said about, yes, homosexuals are fit to live. Wasn’t perfunctory. Is that enough? Do you need more? What about the reporter who mis-quoted +Orama?

In faith, Dave
Viva Texas

[146] Posted by dpeirce on 09-08-2007 at 04:17 PM • top

Lorian,
How likely is it that such a reporter living in such a country with such fear would have made the report to begin with??

[147] Posted by Rocks on 09-08-2007 at 04:22 PM • top

Lorian: most of us, being Americans, live in a nation where personal sexual behavior is a criminal offense punishable with imprisonment.  Refer to the statutes governing prostitution, polygamy or statutory rape.

[148] Posted by Phil on 09-08-2007 at 04:27 PM • top

Just thinking-  It seems that the more traditional cultures, the ones who see individual behavior as being linked to his/her relationship to the family / tribe / nation, and their standing before God (I.e. pretty much everybody in human history except the West since “modern” existential thought) all have the same view toward these matters.  So where do we in the “Modern West” base our lenient attitudes?  Or, and it’s really the same question, does it seem that the more we tend away from the death penalty (setting a higher value on this present life)  the less care we tend to have for the life to come?  Are we more apt to plead for a stayed execution, or for a sinner’s repentance to eternal life?

[149] Posted by Robert Easter on 09-08-2007 at 04:27 PM • top

RE, good thought. Me, I’d say that opposing the death penalty is only a symptom; the real basic cause is our changing attitude toward sex beginning with TEC’s approval of contraception back in the 1930s (the first Church in history to do so). Although it doesn’t seem connected to sex ^_^, opposing the death penalty is just one more of the liberal doctrines which arise from contraception and favor unrestricted pleasures. First the death penalty goes, then more penalties later until behavior is unrestricted. Then the collapse and a successor society which has more sense.

In faith, Dave
Viva Texas

[150] Posted by dpeirce on 09-08-2007 at 04:36 PM • top

“Asking for a written denial and an expression of Godly love for homosexuals sounded to me like asking for an apology.”

Well Dave, trains sound kind of like planes, too, if you’re not listening very closely, but they still can’t fly. Just because a cat has kittens in the oven, doesn’t make them biscuits.

[151] Posted by Cynthia Gee(AKA CJ/goldndog) on 09-08-2007 at 09:28 PM • top

Lorian,
Did I miss something?  Who said that the reporter is a native or has permanent residence in that country?  It was not the government news service who provided the information who apologized.  It was the reporter who passed it on, or am I missing something here??  My impression was that the UPI reporter passed on a report from the government news service, who people seem to think don’t control the news.

[152] Posted by Gigs Girl on 09-08-2007 at 09:32 PM • top

I’m surprised the reappraisers don’t own the whole Anglican Communion with scintillating logic like that.

[153] Posted by Phil on 09-08-2007 at 09:36 PM • top

That was in reference to goldndog, who may actually be either Ross Perot or Jeff Foxworthy, judging by his speech.

[154] Posted by Phil on 09-08-2007 at 09:37 PM • top

I.e. pretty much everybody in human history except the West since “modern” existential thought) all have the same view toward these matters.

Excuse me, but I recall something in scripture about a few places that practiced various homosexual behaviors.  C’mon now, where did we get the word “sodomy?”  Let’s not revise history.  There is no new sin that I know of in the modern west or anywhere else.  It has always been a sin in that sense, but it certainly existed and I feel quite sure that those who practiced it in Sodom and Gomorrah did not consider it to be.  Many Christians have been caught up in this lustful behavior to repent from it, so please don’t try to suggest this is something new and different in the world and only exists in the “west.”  If it only existed here, why would it be necessary to have laws about it all over the world?

[155] Posted by Gigs Girl on 09-08-2007 at 09:39 PM • top

It seems that the more traditional cultures….. all have the same view toward these matters.  So where do we in the “Modern West” base our lenient attitudes?

Uh, maybe on the word of God?
Most of those “traditional cultures” have either been pagan, or not yet civilized. God is purifying His Bride, and if we look to the cultures of the past as models for our future, we rebel against Him and His work in us. I’m not saying that we should view sexual immorality as acceptable Christian behaviour—what I’m saying is that we should view sinners as fallen fellow men to be converted, not as mad dogs to be exterminated. God says that has no pleasure in the death of sinners, it is His will that they repent. Once you execute someone, he can’t very well repent, now can he?

Eze 18:21 ¶ But if the wicked will turn from all his sins that he hath committed, and keep all my statutes, and do that which is lawful and right, he shall surely live, he shall not die. Eze 18:22 All his transgressions that he hath committed, they shall not be mentioned unto him: in his righteousness that he hath done he shall live.  Eze 18:23 Have I any pleasure at all that the wicked should die? saith the Lord GOD: [and] not that he should return from his ways, and live? “

Rom 12:19 Dearly beloved, avenge not yourselves, but [rather] give place unto wrath: for it is written, Vengeance [is] mine; I will repay, saith the Lord.”

“1Ti 2:3 For this [is] good and acceptable in the sight of God our Saviour;  1Ti 2:4 Who will have ALL men to be saved, and to come unto the knowledge of the truth.”

Jhn 8:4 They say unto him, Master, this woman was taken in adultery, in the very act.  Jhn 8:5 Now Moses in the law commanded us, that such should be stoned: but what sayest thou?
Jhn 8:7 So when they continued asking him, he lifted up himself, and said unto them, He that is without sin among you, let him first cast a stone at her.
  Jhn 8:10 When Jesus had lifted up himself, and saw none but the woman, he said unto her, Woman, where are those thine accusers? hath no man condemned thee?  Jhn 8:11 She said, No man, Lord. And Jesus said unto her, Neither do I condemn thee: go, and sin no more.”

[156] Posted by Cynthia Gee(AKA CJ/goldndog) on 09-08-2007 at 09:48 PM • top

Are we more apt to plead for a stayed execution, or for a sinner’s repentance to eternal life?

And how, Robert, do you propose to plead for a sinner’s repentance to eternal life without a stay of execution? 

opposing the death penalty is just one more of the liberal doctrines which arise from contraception and favor unrestricted pleasures.

 
By Jove, I think you’ve got it.  God most assuredly must have been one of those liberals when he allowed, Cain, Moses, and David to live after they all committed murder. . . and one of his own brother - can’t even say he had any type of justification . . . one in anger of that “moment” (which seems to be so important here - to respond “in the moment”) and one for lust.  Then He had the unmitigated gall (after they repented, of course) to actually call them to His service.  Or are we no longer to follow His example?????  I mean, He even forgave them for killing Him. WOW.

[157] Posted by Gigs Girl on 09-08-2007 at 09:49 PM • top

“That was in reference to goldndog, who may actually be either Ross Perot or Jeff Foxworthy, judging by his speech.”

Why, thank you for the compliment, Phil, only I’m a she, not a he.
I figured that if a fellow can’t tell the difference between asking someone to apologise for something that he said, and asking him to plainly deny saying in the first place, (even AFTER that difference has been pointed out by several people) then maybe a little hillbilly thinkin’ might make an impression where more sophisticated logic did not.  The next step, if THAT doesn’t work, would involve making snide comments and catty insults…. but I’ll leave that to those folks who have already “gone there” - this here being a civilized forum for Christian adults.

[158] Posted by Cynthia Gee(AKA CJ/goldndog) on 09-08-2007 at 10:02 PM • top

OK, so I’ll try again.

Ladies, no where was I saying, “kill them all” as it seems to have come across.  The point is that sin is not a matter of social conscience, except in that the social conscience can be skewed to excuse or even recommend sin.

When we look at the evening news and there are people crowded in front of a prison or state house pleading that a convicted murderer be allowed to vegetate on Death Row for the rest of their natural life, but wouldn’t think of hitting the streets to, say, witness outside a strip joint or an abortion “clinic” I think we, as Church, have a problem.  And when we accept spun data from activist “researchers” to recommend buggary (even though it rhymes with purity), in proud disregard to Scripture (and the wisdom of every generation of humanity, even the pagans), then, yes, we do have a problem.  Good news There is an amazingly simple solution. One, and one only:  The Cross of Christ.  Like Evan Roberts said, “How can we have revival when our hearts are not right with God?  We better get right.

Robert

[159] Posted by Robert Easter on 09-08-2007 at 10:28 PM • top

“....there are people crowded in front of a prison or state house pleading that a convicted murderer be allowed to vegetate on Death Row for the rest of their natural life, but wouldn’t think of hitting the streets to, say, witness outside a strip joint or an abortion “clinic” I think we, as Church, have a problem.”

Robert, many, many people who are oposed to the death penalty are also opposed to abortion. It’s not an either/or situation, though people on both the radical right and the radical left would have us believe that it is.

[160] Posted by Cynthia Gee(AKA CJ/goldndog) on 09-08-2007 at 10:45 PM • top

Three words: Roman Catholic Church.

Three more: Sister Helen Prejean.

Three more: Pope Benedict XVI.

As for the few folks in this thread (and I stress: they are a definite minority) who seem to believe that gay sex is profoundly sinful but cheerfully calling for people to be killed isn’t, I would only say stick, log, eye.  Otherwise my inclination is, respectfully, to give these people the same response one gives their counterparts on the left: Ignore them in favor of people who are actually interested in having a two-way conversation.  Some of the logic cited above would have demanded that Jesus himself be stoned to death for interrupting the adulteress’ punishment, so calling it orthodox Christianity would be deeply ironic to say the least.

[161] Posted by Tom Head on 09-08-2007 at 10:53 PM • top

Touche, goldndog -

[162] Posted by Phil on 09-08-2007 at 10:57 PM • top

“As for the few folks in this thread (and I stress: they are a definite minority) who seem to believe that gay sex is profoundly sinful but cheerfully calling for people to be killed isn’t, I would only say stick, log, eye…...Some of the logic cited above would have demanded that Jesus himself be stoned to death for interrupting the adulteress’ punishment, so calling it orthodox Christianity would be deeply ironic to say the least. “

Tom Head, Amen and AMEN! Bravo!

[163] Posted by Cynthia Gee(AKA CJ/goldndog) on 09-08-2007 at 10:59 PM • top

Ok I was going to post about this because OT doesn’t even describe it as we are now over the river and through the woods but I have to ask.

Three words: Roman Catholic Church.

Three more: Sister Helen Prejean.

Three more: Pope Benedict XVI.

What does referring to these mean?

[164] Posted by Rocks on 09-08-2007 at 11:28 PM • top

Make that WASN’T going to….

[165] Posted by Rocks on 09-08-2007 at 11:29 PM • top

Someone remarked that the same people who support abortion rights also oppose the death penalty.  I pointed out that the Roman Catholic Church is the world’s leading opponent to both.

I had the opportunity to meet Sister Helen last year, by the way.  Amazing human being—and the best speaker I’ve ever heard in person.

[166] Posted by Tom Head on 09-08-2007 at 11:31 PM • top

Good and encouraging answer, goldndog, but how does it answer my question?  The people who actually do go out to protest an execution (which, at best, would extend an earthly life by a couple of decades inside a penitentiary!)- do they show up to offer the better Way to people going in to strip joints or abortion establishments?  This question was framed as an example of the problem.  The question is still very real, and so is the problem.  Are we, in the Church today,  more conscious of whether a murderer finds mercy wtth the governor than whether a sinner finds mercy in Christ?  If so, how do we show it?  Are we so dazzled by the “realities” we see that we confuse social issues for spiritual, the temporal for the eternal?  (Actually, I never mentioned demonstrating against the abortion business, but reaching out to those effected.)

Robert

[167] Posted by Robert Easter on 09-08-2007 at 11:33 PM • top

The traditional teaching of the Church does not exclude, presupposing full ascertainment of the identity and responsibility of the offender, recourse to the death penalty, when this is the only practicable way to defend the lives of human beings effectively against the aggressor.

Tom,
I understand and sympathize with your position but including the RCC is a mistake. The RCC opposes the application of the Death Penalty, not the Penalty itself. Granted it is a very fine distinction.

[168] Posted by Rocks on 09-08-2007 at 11:58 PM • top

Well, I’m certainly not up on RC theology, but my own position—and that of many other libertarians—is that in principle one may fully support lethal self-defense, for example, while at the same time hesitating to put such authority in the hands of a government which has (everywhere, including in our blessed USofA) shown that such authority will be abused for political and/or bureaucratic reasons—as Christians, in particular, are well aware, Our Guy having been the victim of just such an execution.

[169] Posted by Craig Goodrich on 09-09-2007 at 02:56 AM • top

“Sister Helen Prejean”

Her supporters go to great efforts to disguise it, but this nun is, and has admitted to being, “pro-choice;” and so I am amazed that so far she has escaped the kind of discipine that has been imposed on other “pro-choice”  nuns (e.g., Sister Helen Mansour a few years back, in Michigan).

[170] Posted by William Tighe on 09-09-2007 at 08:51 AM • top

my own position—and that of many other libertarians <>
What an interesting comment.  I would hope that all of our positions are based first on emulating Jesus Christ first and not on our political party’s beliefs.  This is where MANY people seem to be confused.  Jesus’ only interest in “politics” was in the synagogue.  I wish people would remember that.
<blockquote>I am amazed that so far she has escaped the kind of discipine that has been imposed on other “pro-choice” nuns

Interesting that it is imposed on politicians as opposed to a “religious,” also - again, mixing religion and politics.  Is it the place of politicians to “represent” their personal religion when running for a secular office?  Have we learned nothing from Islamic states?

[171] Posted by Gigs Girl on 09-09-2007 at 01:03 PM • top

“Is it the place of politicians to “represent” their personal religion when running for a secular office?  Have we learned nothing from Islamic states?”

If your religion tells you that abortion is killing babies and yet you run for office, or in office, take a position that “I am personally opposed to killing babies” (i.e., abortion) but “I will support and uphold the right to kill babies” (i.e., abortion), then you are either an idiot (you uphold the right to do something that your own religion teaches is a vile crime, and don’t realize the “disconnect”) or a hypocrite (you don’t really believe what your religion teaches, but you put on a show)—and in either case the officials of the religion that you claim to profess should incessantly draw this situation to your attention, warn you that you are in danger of damnation, and if you persist in your folly, excommunicate you and bring this to the attention of as many of your coreligionists as possible.  While it may not be the province of politicians to “represent” their personal religion, they should not “betray” it either, or demonstrate their clear contempt for its teachings, which is what “pro-choice Catholics” are doing—a strange thing, when without any difficulties or “fatwas” they could easily become Episcopalians.

[172] Posted by William Tighe on 09-09-2007 at 02:01 PM • top

Tighe, Sister Helen’s <a >Wikipedia page</a> identifies her as supportive of the Roman Catholic Church’s position on abortion, so I have no idea what you’re talking about.

In any case, given that you have expressed sympathy for the idea that lesbians and gay men be stoned to death, your position on abortion is about as relevant as Jeffrey Dahmer’s.

[173] Posted by Tom Head on 09-09-2007 at 02:40 PM • top

“While it may not be the province of politicians to “represent” their personal religion, they should not “betray” it either, or demonstrate their clear contempt for its teachings, which is what “pro-choice Catholics” are doing—a strange thing, when without any difficulties or “fatwas” they could easily become Episcopalians.”

I agree with that statement, as far as it goes,  but let’s face it, plenty of people (especially politicians)  juggle opposing sets of values in their heads—they have one set of beliefs to which they give lipservice on Sunday morning, and another which goes to work with them on Monday. And then there are the people who claim to be Christians, but who advocate sinful things, such as abortion, homosexual lifestyle, or support for the death penalty.
Sin is sin—it doesn’t matter whether it’s liberal-flavored, or conservative flavoured, or Neapolitan.

[174] Posted by Cynthia Gee(AKA CJ/goldndog) on 09-09-2007 at 02:41 PM • top

</a>Forgot the closing a href bracket.  Oh, well.  As I was saying, Sister Helen’s Wikipedia page identifies her as supportive of the RCC’s position on abortion, so I assume this reflects your usual level of respect for the Sixth Commandment.

Tighe, the bottom line is that I don’t like to argue with Shari’a theocrats of any tradition.  If you believe that widespread public stoning is the answer to society’s ills, then your opinion on abortion simply doesn’t matter to me or, I would wager, to most other Americans on either side of the abortion debate.  I’m interested in having a discussion with people who at least share the common denominator of respecting the lives of actualized human persons.  That is where the discussion has to start.  People who do not respect the lives of actualized human persons have no leg to stand on when they oppose abortion, and their only effective function is to drive people away from the anti-abortion movement.

[175] Posted by Tom Head on 09-09-2007 at 02:52 PM • top

“Her supporters go to great efforts to disguise it, but this nun is, and has admitted to being, “pro-choice;”

Tighe, would you care to document that? Sister Helen is a noted <a>pro-life activist</a>. 
Really, the irony here is rich—just yesterday, some folks were complaining about how people seem overly willing to believe a news reporter’s story about +Orama; yet here they go, claiming that Sr. Helen Prejean is a closet abortion supporter,  and they offer no evidence for that statement at all. Priceless—it reminds me of 30 years ago: back then, people would insinuate that anyone who espoused views different from their own was a closet Communist.

[176] Posted by Cynthia Gee(AKA CJ/goldndog) on 09-09-2007 at 03:02 PM • top

This ends my participation in this thread, by the way, which has long since gone off-topic.  But I will say that the response of Jill, Greg, Kendall, Matt, Jackie, et. al. to the public stoning issue is not one I’ll forget, and if anyone ever suggests that the conservative movement in America is led by people who advocate public stoning, I will refer them to Stand Firm’s response on this matter.  The presence of a few attention-seeking trollers does not change the fact that the conservative movement has forcefully and, for all practical purposes, unanimously repudiated the idea reflected in what the reporter wrote.  That’s the important message of this thread from where I sit.

[177] Posted by Tom Head on 09-09-2007 at 03:03 PM • top

“If you believe that widespread public stoning is the answer to society’s ills, then your opinion on abortion simply doesn’t matter to me or, I would wager, to most other Americans on either side of the abortion debate.”

When did I say this?  I said, and reaffirm it now, that in a society that organizes its life on Christian principles (and that as much in jurisprudence and penology, as in any other respect), it is as legitimate to punish sexual misbehaviour with the rigor of the law, as any other form of misbehaviour; and among those types of sexual misbehaviour that the law could, and probably should, punish, I make no distinction between adultery, homosexual sodomy (or any other kind of sodomy, for that matter) and paedophilia.  I did not say, and do not necessarily advocate “punishment by death” (since I have an aversion, more emotional than rational, from the death penalty) for any or all of these misbehaviours or perversions, but it strikes me as simply obvious that a Christian society, or even simply a well-governed one, will uphold the normativity and “bond” of marriage and punish its violations (i.e., adultery) and its caricatures (homosexual sodomy) with legal penalties.

Has nobody here heard of “The Third Use of the Law?”

[178] Posted by William Tighe on 09-09-2007 at 03:04 PM • top

Tom, I think that’s as good a place as any to close this thread, which, as you noted, has gone wildly off-topic.

[179] Posted by Greg Griffith on 09-09-2007 at 03:07 PM • top

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