Sunday, 18 November 2012

Am I a Libertarian?

According to Wikipedia, "libertarianism" is defined as
a [personal] philosophy that upholds individual liberty, especially freedom of expression and action. (I substituted the word 'personal' for Wikipedia's 'political')
Which is as good a definition as any, I suppose. As I understand it, as it relates to my way of thinking, it involves radical individual rights, individual freedom of choice and individual freedom of conscience.

Let me start by saying then, for example, that if I owned a bed and breakfast, even though I consider myself a fairly fundamentalist Christian, if a gay couple wanted to stay overnight, I would welcome them. I would not turn them away. It just so happens that that would be my choice. But if someone else wishes to operate their own business, according to the dictates of their own conscience, I believe they have that right. Or if a person of faith (any faith) who owns a printing business feels uncomfortable in printing invitations for a gay wedding, I believe they have the right to decline that business. I understand that this is not the law as it stands, but I think the law as it stands is wrong in this area.

If someone wants to open a business and offer their services only to albino midgets over the age of 60, I believe they have that right.

If a group of Native Canadians want to form a Native Healing Society, and restrict membership only to First-Nations people, I believe they have that right. Heck, if they want to restrict it to exclusively male Native Canadians, or exclusively female, I believe they have that right.

If a women's fitness club doesn't want to admit male members I believe they have a right to deny them.

And if a Muslim wants to open a barber shop and tell his customers that because of his religious beliefs he cannot cut women's hair, I believe he has that right. And I think any reasonable person should respect that religious perspective and travel another block or two to another barber shop. I believe that anyone with the attitude that would force someone to contravene genuinely held religious beliefs for his or her convenience demonstrates a high degree of intolerance, self-centeredness and sense of entitlement.

And I believe that only such an intolerant, self-centered busybody would launch a suit against him.

And, as I say, I wonder if that suit would even be launched if the complainant had to fund it him or herself.

Take Care

PS: In my next post I will attempt to address how I can reconcile this personal philosophy with my Christian faith.

Saturday, 17 November 2012

Battle of the Winners

Toronto woman denied haircut files human rights complaint

This should be interesting.
From Here...

A Toronto barbershop has found itself at the centre of a human rights complaint after its barbers refused to cut a woman's hair.
Faith McGregor, 35, went to the Terminal Barber Shop on Bay Street, back in June looking for a haircut.  
The barbers, who are all Muslim, told her their religion didn't allow them to cut the hair of a woman who is not a member of their family.
So,,, we have here two protagonists, each from an identifiable group which rarely if ever loses a human rights case. Not only is Ms McGregor a woman, but also, apparently, a lesbian. That's two tick marks in her favour. However, in the opposite corner, the accused are Muslims, which fact is also probably worth at least two.

Were the barbers Christian, of course there would be no contest. But in this case, it will be interesting to see the human rights people twist themselves into pretzels to justify whatever decision they make.

Take Care

PS: I have no idea who will win, but, as a person who believes in freedom of conscience, I'm with the barbers.

Friday, 16 November 2012

2013 Mayan Calendar Found

The world can breathe a sigh of relief today as archeologist Dr Hart Fardley has discovered, deep in the jungles of Central America, a long-lost 2013 Mayan Calendar.

Experts had feared that the fact that the previous Mayan calendar ended at Dec 21, 2012, signaled that the end of the earth was imminent. Speculation is rife as to why the only previously known Mayan calendar ended when it did.

Among the reasons historians postulate are

  • The Mayan calendar maker ran out of calendar-making supplies at that date.
  • Creation of the calendar was running behind and Dec 21, 2012 was as far as they got by press time.
  • The calendar creative department was unionized and 12/21/12 was as far as the calendar was developed by 5:00 on the Friday before a long weekend. During the weekend, the Spanish invaded and wiped out the entire population before work could continue.
  • The 2013 calendar was being prepared by a separate government department and was lost in shipping before it could be joined to the previously finished work.
In any case, readers of this blog can now be assured that there will be further blogs post Dec 22.

Take Care

Tuesday, 13 November 2012

The World We Knew Has Passed, and It's OK

I had a few discussions with Warren a few posts back. What it comes down to, though, is this: I really do believe things have changed, not for the better, and the Western, North American, (call it what you will) society is in irreversible decline. The glory is leaving the temple, or the continent, so to speak, and life as many of us experienced it will fade gradually into a dusty fog. It sounds pessimistic, but that is what I believe.

I came across The Anchoress Blog through another site I enjoy, First Things, and I instantly enjoyed her writing. It reminds me of Chesterton, one of my favourite authors.
I know some say “America cannot end.” But that is the first illusion we must put away, because it is all about pride — all about idolatry. It says America is eternal, when nothing is but God. Some say “we just need the right message,” but who had the right-er message than Christ, and the crowd still called for Barabbas. Who was more blessed than the apostles and saints, but they still were set upon and slain.
God’s blessing, if it is truly upon America, does not mean she survives forever,... if she is truly blessed, it means she gets to suffer for the sake of clarity — to spend some time in the crucible, in order to be refined.
People of faith, take a good hard look at the new landscape  and do not be afraid; do NOT be afraid.
Changes are going to come, and they’re going to come quickly, so now is the time to work on strengthening the atrophied muscles of our spiritual lives... look at that election in Massachusetts and see the emptiness, the aching void that the masses have unwittingly invited in to lead them.
We must be ready to help them; the remnant must be ready when the people who have invited the void into their lives become... “unspeakably lonely.” And they will. “If they have completely lost sight of God, they will feel the whole horror of their poverty. Then they will discover the little flock of believers as something wholly new. They will discover it as a hope that is meant for them, an answer for which they have always been searching in secret.”
Doors have been opened, corners have been turned, directions have been set. And I'm not that bothered by it all.

I'm just sayin'.

Take Care

Where are the Women?

(CNN) - Thousands of supporters of various Egyptian Salafi groups gathered in Cairo's Tahrir Square on Friday calling for the immediate implementation of Islamic (Sharia) law.
From Here...

Do you see any women protesting for sharia? I wonder why.

Take Care

Monday, 12 November 2012

An Atheist Attends Church

 I happened upon This post on the Edmonton Atheists(!) website. It recalls a visit by a member of that society to Southminster-Steinhauer United Church in Edmonton
...Rev. Charles Bidwell sat down with us to answer questions we had about the church and what to expect.  
...he mentioned (within hearing distance of other church members) that he considers himself an atheist Christian. And then went on to explain that within the church, Jesus is considered someone who had some useful things to say, and wasn’t related to God (if there is a god) in any way.

...I would feel comfortable recommending Southminster-Steinhauer United.
That's some recommendation. What more can I say?

Take Care

Thursday, 8 November 2012

The Wheel of History Turned and We Saw It Turn

America is in decline. It may be an inevitable decline but Obama's reelection will just hasten the process.
From Here

Pondering President Obama’s reelection, I can’t help remembering that in the course of my adult life, the Britain I first knew half a century ago has run through its allotment of ruin and is now almost unrecognizably transformed from the stiff-upper-lip, never-say-die redoubt of fair play and free-born Englishmen of very recent stereotype. Now it is the land where snarling, shaven-headed louts beget still more louts upon a succession of compliant, abused sluts as clueless as they about what makes a meaningful and decent life;
Read the whole thing. I believe it speaks the truth eloquently.

Take Care

A Prophecy

This would be chilling if I had not already become reconciled to its inevitablilty.

And it leads me to these thoughts...
And this gospel of the kingdom will be preached in the whole world as a testimony to all nations, and then the end will come. (Matthew 24:14)
The Gospel spread from Jerusalem through Judea and Samaria. From there into Europe, then west across the Atlantic and across North America. It is now spreading and bearing fruit even further west, across the Pacific. I believe there will be a great wave of Christianity arise throughout China and South Asia.
It will continue westward back to the Middle East to where it started. Then, when it has been preached, " the whole world... the end will come."
There will be no one without excuse.  God has been patient with us. People will not only have had the witness of the physical world and its wonders around us, and the witness of reason which must lead to the undeniable conclusion that there is a Creator responsible for it all. They will have had the opportunity to have heard directly, with their own ears, about this God who created them and wishes them to seek and know Him.

Take Care

Wednesday, 7 November 2012

The Force Must Have Been With Him

Obama has another 4 years to complete his deconstruction of America.

I love America. I am not an American, but I am America’s neighbour (note my spelling of, “neighbour”). And it pains me to see it heading down the path, seemingly blindly, it is on. What happened? A few random thoughts:
  • I think their focus on certain social conservative issues hurt them – abortion, gay marriage, goofy statements about rape and pregnancy. I tend to be rather libertarian on these issues. I could not ever counsel a woman to have an abortion, whatever the circumstances. But neither would I prevent her from doing so. Similarly, gay marriage is a fact in our society, and growing more and more accepted, even applauded. But, as much as its opponents claim it signals the downfall of marriage and the family, I’ve said it before, I believe that much more damaging to the fabric of the family as the cornerstone of our society was the acceptance of common-law as equivalent to marriage. How can I reconcile my positions here? I turn to the Bible:
    “Let him who does wrong continue to do wrong; let him who is vile continue to be vile; let him who does right continue to do right; and let him who is holy continue to be holy.” (Rev 22:11)
    Moral decline? That bus left a long time ago.
  • It was interesting to see all the young people jumping in glee in the crowd in Chicago. I thought, “These poor people are the ones who will have to pay for the debt that Obama is running up now.”
  • A fundamental shift has occurred in the social order cosmos. America is transitioning from a nation of makers to one of takers, or at least receivers. People have turned from an outward, "service to others" focus, to a more selfish, "What about my rights?" attitude. We are becoming a morally and economically entitled society. People seem in many cases to be isolated from their neighbours and wrapped in their own self-absorbed bubbles.
  • In the debate on foreign affairs debate, the issue of the Obama administration’s outright lies and coverup of what happened in Benghazi was never even brought up. What was Romney thinking? It’s almost like someone on the Obama team waved their hand, like Obiwan Kenobi in Star Wars and said, "You don't need to raise this issue." And Romney thought to himself, “I don’t need to raise this issue.”
  • Obama’s policy as it relates to the Muslim world, both within and outside his country will be disastrous. For some reason, he and Hilary are behaving as if they think that if they are nice to radical Islamists, the nice treatment will be returned. There is much focus on bullying these days. Well, I predict that Obama’s wrong-headed policies will be seen as the weakness they are, and that bullying by radical Muslim groups will increase around the world because the US will be seen as too weak, or too weak-willed, to stop it. Terrorism, or at least terrorist boldness, will increase, not decrease.
Just my thoughts.

Take Care

Is the Pope a Catholic?

Does MSNBC have a totally biased agenda? Chris Matthews can hardly contain his glee over Hurricane Sandy. Is the re-election of Obama more important than the suffering of millions of people? I'm sure that deep down, Chris Matthews thinks so, even though, obviously, he could never admit it.

Was it a slip? Or did it betray his true feelings?

Take Care

Tuesday, 6 November 2012

Well, OK..., You Wanted it, You Got It

Talk about cans of worms...

Transgender woman says she was discriminated against at Olympia college.

I confess have a certain sympathy for those who may feel so tortured as to think they have been born into the wrong gendered body. I can't relate, but I don't necessarily judge. I have known and have perhaps worked, even in church, with them.

But this person is completely self-centered, even arrogant, certainly inconsiderate about the whole situation. He/she,  apparently, has not had the necessary surgery to complete the transformation to female and so still has all his original male equipment. But he/she still thinks he/she has the right to lie naked in a sauna in front of minor girls! And because he calls himself a woman, this makes it alright? What would happen to me if I exposed myself to high school girls (besides, perhaps, my feelings being hurt by their uncontrollable laughter)?

I guess I could insist to the arresting officer that I considered myself a woman, for the moment at least.

This is what happens when we make changes without thinking them through. Although who knows? Perhaps those who push for this agenda are quite prepared for this kind of consequence, and think anyone who objects is being terribly narrow-minded.

Take Care