The Wayfarer's Creed

Archive for the ‘politics’ Category

  • Still working at Lord & Taylor, though I’m a Specialist now for Kenneth Cole New York.
  • Member of Green Party of Monroe County Steering Committee, and working on Alex White for Mayor campaign, we can win this!
  • Organizing Interfaith Advocates for LGBT People to become more active, reaching out to local faith communities regardless of theological positions
  • Buddhist/Christian contemplation and meditation, reading Thich Nhat Hanh’s Heart of the Buddha’s Teaching
  • Living and hanging out at Ant Hill Cooperative, community living is the way to go!
  • Take the bus everywhere, isn’t it nice when low-income status forces action on something I should have been doing already?
  • Singing and laughing as part of the Rochester Gay Men’s Chorus
  • Going to Albany next week as part of Marriage Equality New York’s lobby day
  • Finding paradise amongst the suffering
  • Attending worship at Rochester Area Mennonite Fellowship when I can, why do I have to work on Sunday?
  • Crossing my fingers that I don’t burn myself out

 

Of course, I’m already convinced that I shouldn’t have to do what this young man did.

It amazes me how the justice system works in our society.  All people think about is vengeance and punishment.  But I’m glad to hear that New York State has taken a step in the right direction by  relaxing the draconian Rockefeller drug laws.  Instead of sending all drug offenders right off to confinement, judges are now allowed to send them to treatment, the thing that they actually need. Drug offenses are so deeply rooted in other issues such as poverty and dysfunctional relationships.  These people really are victims of society and to punish them for that with no chance of redemption is just plain wrong.  So kudos to the State Legislature and the Governor for doing what is right.

So as tomorrow is Election Day in the United States, my decision first of all must be whether I will vote or not.  For some people this is just a matter of laziness. For others not voting is actually a matter of principle.  My faith tradition has argued over this matter in the past and is still arguing about it.  How much should we involve ourselves in the kingdom of the Sword?  If we vote for one of the major party candidates we know that we are voting for someone who will authorize the use of violence for the “good” of the nation.  True one is more reluctant, but is there really such a thing as the lesser of two evils.  Of course, there is always the choice of another candidate.  Many of our minor-party candidates in this country are much closer to an ideal politics than what we have right now.  But if we truly involve ourselves in these parties in order to actually make them effective in our system, do we put too much of ourselves into them as Christians.  In the end though, even if my views on the matter aren’t very solid, I will vote.  So then the question is Obama or McCain or someone else entirely?  All of the previous thoughts have led to say that I prefer Barack Obama over John McCain for the presidency.  I will however be voting for Cynthia McKinney because I do believe that the Green Party has the vision to make things better, even if not perfect.  And while she most likely will not win the election, a vote for the Greens will help build the party at the local, state, and national levels, and will thus help other Greens, who can make a difference, get into office.

So, I just finished reading a book about a man named Zvi Weichert.  Zvi was a Jew of Polish origin, who managed to escape to the Levant where he participated in the establishment of Eretz Yisrael.  This is all good, but what’s the deal with nicely forgetting that the Jews hadn’t lived in this region for centuries, and that there were others that had.  And then to top it off, the people who just wanted to remain in their homes are labeled terrorists?  This book was published by the Christian Zionist organization, the Friends of Israel.  So can someone explain to me what the problem is with these people.

Now don’t get me wrong. The Jews have had a rough history, and I find nothing wrong with the fact that they want to have their own place, where they have no problem with being Jews.  But for being a persecuted people, they have pretty quickly forgotten what its like and have now embraced the role of oppressor.  I just wish that right wing Christians would realize this and stop ignoring it.  And I wish they would realized that the Palestinian people have just as much right to the land as the Israelis.

A few weeks ago in church, Kathy a member of CPT was asking for our prayers with one of Israel’s recent atrocities.  That day the plan was to evict the children from a West Bank orphanage and demolish it.  This was all these children had, and they had nowhere to go.  How can anybody stand this nonsense?  How can the Christian church stand by and let the Chosen People commit these atrocities.  Fortunately, the eviction has not happened, but the thought that it could even be considered is an outrage to my sensibilities, and I hope to yours.

OK, I absolutely love the Christian band Casting Crowns. The music they play is excellent and the words to the songs are often very thought provoking, and they are definitely not superficial as so many are. However, whenever I listen to them it is inevitable that I here their song “What If His People prayed.” While I find most of the song to be perfectly fine, there is just one line that always assaults me when I hear it. It is the title of this post, “then maybe kids in school could pray.”

Why is it that Christians so often obsess over this? Do they really think that a group prayer in the public schools is really going to do anybody any good? This type of attitude just makes my brothers and sisters in Christ look foolish. We live in a diverse society, a post-Christian society. Why would we have prayer to a God that 90% of the class does not revere? School prayer just does not make any sense in our society. Actually, I believe that this would probably be detrimental to the Church. I think that one of the worst things to ever happen to the Church was when Constantine brought it into the public life of the Roman Empire. The message of the King was completely distorted when the institution of the Church was Romanized. I see this same sort of problem when the Church is Americanized, something that is very likely to happen when prayer is uttered in the school. It becomes a civic Christianity, the type of Christianity that is nothing more than whatever supports the actions of the community at large. Read the rest of this entry »



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