Wednesday, December 31, 2014

Religion and Torture - That Poll

Poll categories create bias.  They mediate reality.  On this, at least, the constructivists have a point.  We are incapable of not determining meanings through cultural reagents - through prior experience, mimesis, formal training, language, and media.  We also appear incapable, with few exceptions, of not applying these interpretations to fears, prejudices, and agendas.  This applies to me as much as to anyone, God help me.

Monday, December 22, 2014

Call & Response

Andrea Dworkin once said, "I'm a radical feminist, not the fun kind."

I suppose I could say the same thing about being Christian.  Just as any damn fool can call herself a "feminist" (Camille Paglia comes immediately to mind), there are plenty of people out there who claim Christ, but manage to say and do things that are the very antithesis of what he did and said.

Saturday, December 20, 2014


The following is an excerpt from Borderline - Reflections on War, Sex, and Church, which I am publishing through Cascade Books, probably in January, February at the latest. It is not a direct response to the torture debate that has arisen in response to the release of some information about U.S. agencies using torture against various detainees.  This excerpt will not answer many of the questions raised by that debate, which is - to the chagrin of myself and others, Christians - a debate among putative Christians in the United States.  More to the point, there is a majority among American Christians who believe there are circumstances that justify the use of torture against people who are held captive.  Everything I know about the teachings and example of Jesus tells me that torture is altogether evil.