Alarming News: I like Morgan Freeberg. A lot.
Anti-Idiotarian Rottweiler: We were following a trackback and thinking "hmmm... this is a bloody excellent post!", and then we realized that it was just part III of, well, three...Damn. I wish I'd written those.
Anti-Idiotarian Rottweiler: ...I just remembered that I found a new blog a short while ago, House of Eratosthenes, that I really like. I like his common sense approach and his curiosity when it comes to why people believe what they believe rather than just what they believe.
Brutally Honest: Morgan Freeberg is an intriguing guy...[he] asks great questions and answers others with style, flair, reason and wit. On the blogroll he goes. Make him a part of your regular blogospheric reading. I certainly will.
Brutally Honest: Morgan Freeberg is brilliant.
Common Sense Junction: Misha @ Anti-Idiotarian never ceases to amaze me. He keeps finding other good blogs. I went over to A.I. this morning for my daily Misha fix and he had found this guy named Morgan Freeberg in Fair Oaks, California, that has a blog, House of Eratosthenes. Freeberg says its "The Blog That Nobody Reads" but it may now become the blog that everybody reads.
Jaded Haven: Good God, Morgan, you cover a topic from front to back with a screwy thoroughness I find mind boggling. I'm in awe of your thought proccesses, my friend, you're an exceptional talent. You start by throwing in the kitchen sink, tie in someone's syphilitic uncle, bend around a rip tide of brilliance and bring it all home in a neat, diamond dripping package of an exceptionally readable moment of damn fine wordsmithing. I love reading you.
Mein Blogovault: Make "the Blog that No One Reads" one of your daily reads.
Philmon: When Morgan meanders, stick with him - he's got a point and it'll be worth it in the end. He's not a hit-and-run snarky quip kind of guy. The pieces all fall into place like tumblers in a lock and bang! He's opened a cognative door for you.
Rightlinx: Morgan at House of Eratosthenes is one of the best writers out there. I read him nearly every day because he manages to provide an interesting perspective, even though I don't always agree.
Poetic Justice: Cletus! Ah gots a laiv one fer yew...
You think that’s a reference to the Lemon Test. No, it isn’t…but it is that particular topic. Things, usually things that are part of a cherished tradition, that some busybody with authority thinks need to go the way of the Dodo bird because they’re not secular enough in nature.
My prongs are not part of any kind of test, they are observations. Observations which, from what I can tell, endure from one “War on Christmas” incident to the next…not a single one of the three ever falter or fail. There may be exceptions, somewhere, but I’m still waiting to find some. I thought of the first two when I was writing about this a short time ago, and thought of a third one as I was commenting at blogger friend Daphne’s place.
Thus far, each of the parts in the unholy trinity is universal:
The misplaced perception of injury. It seems in Anno Domini Twenty Eleven, this strange notion has set in that to deny the existence of a particular class of people is morally equivalent to actively trying to obliterate said class of people. Somehow, the atheist and the Buddhist and the Hindu and the Muslim are supposed to suffer some actual injury when they see a Nativity display on an Air Force base, like a slug writhing in agony beneath a salt shaker. The rules have not been written anywhere or vocalized by anyone — they’re too silly — so I have to figure out what they are by deductive reasoning, which tells me: You may doubt the existence of these alternative systems of belief in private. But if you display something that suggests you don’t know they’re around, that’s when the “rights” have been violated. So we all have this brand-new-manufactured-basic-human-“right” that total strangers should believe in us and our non-Judeo-Christian creeds; or, at least, if any of these total strangers do not believe in us, we have a right not to be reminded of them — our right is to remain ignorant of their ignorance. Oh, and we only have this right as members of groups, not as individuals. So if I chose not to believe in God, you’re infringing on my rights if you refuse to believe I don’t believe in God. Strangely, The Almighty is entirely lacking in exactly this right. Seems almost like a case of discrimination. Why, it is, come to think of it — they can doubt Him, but I’m in heap big trouble if I deny them. Publicly.
The protection of the command decision from the hostility of public opinion. The United States Congress did not vote on a new rule that forbids its members from writing the phrase “Merry Christmas” to constituents; a commission did that. That’s the constant. It’s always a commission, or a three-judge panel, or a board, or the concern of the community. Nobody lowers the boom with one of these crazy hyper-secular rules, and then campaigns for re-election on a platform of “I’m the guy who.” And I find that to be very strange, because the rule is supposed to be put into effect because of the exquisite agony someone is suffering due to the Christmas lights, or hearing people say “God bless you!” when they sneeze, or whatever. Supposedly, the constitutional integrity of our republic is in dire jeopardy before some super-sensible double-talking pipsqueak figures out we can’t have seasonal holly hung from the street signs downtown. If the crisis is that serious, how come these brave public servants who avert it on our behalf, don’t want to bask in our adulation and gratitude? I mean, ever?
The anonymity of the complainant. Together with the skimpy numbers of the complainant…the weakness of the arguments of the complainant…the fictional nature of the complainant! We ordinary people, in the United States anyway, enjoy a constitutional right to face our accuser. Not so with God, Jesus, Santa Claus, Old glory, or any other iconic figure caught in the cross hairs of one of these hyper-secular, busybody, pulled-out-of-someone’s-ass rules. From the anonymous airman who wrote to have the Nativity scene removed from Travis AFB, to the apartment manager lady who demanded an American flag be taken down because someone in the “diverse community” might be offended…we’re never actually introduced to anybody who’s born the brunt of this abuse of having to lay eyes upon such an icon. A goodly measure of the time, the strutting martinet in question will actually go on record and admit there is no such complainant, the offensive display is being removed as a precaution, for the benefit of the theoretically offended. Now give this one a good think…when is the last time you wrote a letter to City Hall, or your boss, or your apartment manager, or anybody else in charge — from just you! — letting them know something made you uncomfortable, or you wanted something changed, and got that kind of satisfaction? I don’t know about you, but I don’t have an experience like that to share, nor do I know anybody who has. Like, wow! These must be some great letter writers!
Let’s just quit beating around the bush. This has nothing to do with religion at all. The American Flag doesn’t represent a religion. Christmas tinsel is not religious. Nobody’s lying awake at night, chewing their fingernails in apprehension that some portion of their tax dollars are being spent on displays that are associated with a popular view of Creation that they don’t share.
This is an attack on tradition. It is a coordinated attack, one that is insulated from the ballot box, out of concern that it could not survive a chance brush with it. If those who are sympathetic to this attack, felt that they could still engage in it after they were told “Wait for a real live person to be offended, then give us a call, we’ll have a town meeting about it” — they’d be doing exactly that.
But they cannot press their attack on those terms. Because it would be like nose-picking with a wet noodle, and they know it. And then the voters would be able to tell them what they thought of that excessive waste of time…and they know that, too.
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