A person of emotion…apparently

Political Discussion, Uncategorized

I can’t help but think about my manifesto Post-Other Age. I can’t help but think about how it has been ignored by my peers. I can’t help but think about how much I pissed off my intellectual mentors simply because they couldn’t stomach my (mostly tongue-in-cheek) distaste/distrust of psychoanalysis… I can’t help but think about how they got caught up on this one tiny challenge and ignored the more important, the more resonant parts of what I insist. To that I say two things:

  • Me challenging the way psychoanalysis marginalizes non-male, non-heterosexuals doesn’t mean I am anti-Semitic. It also doesn’t make me stupid, extreme, base, or uneducated.
  • I wish people read what I wrote more carefully. But alas, I am a person with little voice; one who has always been met with silence. This drives me crazy beyond belief.

 

I’ve been called “a person of emotion, not a person of ideas…” and while I am still trying to figure out what that means, this person without ideas is going to share them… knowing that, more than likely, what I say, will fall on deaf ears. Insert a month of blog posts here… one a day… one for every idea in my manifesto that I feel is worth sharing, because, toward you Mr. Silence, there are noshitsgiven.

A Post-Other Age

We have entered an epoch that is post-gender, not in the sense that we no longer have distinct, sexual body parts, but in the sense that society needs to have intense conversations that push beyond reinforcing the control of power through historical patterns of the male/female binary. In a broader sense, we have also entered an epoch that is Post-Other, not in the sense that we are no longer culturally different, but in the sense that society needs to have intense discussions that push beyond the reinforcement of normative power structures. Categories of gender, sexuality, race, ethnicity, etc. have been unraveling for a reason; our conversations about art, politics, and each other, likewise, need to unravel.

So what does Post-Other mean? The term Post-Other[1] means a departure from, and a distrust in the grand theories and ideologies that help us understand, interact, judge, and label the Other. Post-Other also refers to a rejection of the problematic modes of relationship which mediate between normative and the perpetual other groups; this rejection comes not because we have moved on or have departed from the problems and struggles related to the “us” vs “them” binary, but precisely because we haven’t, and we desperately need to.

[1] Think about Post-Other as something similar to the term Postmodern. A pseudo-intellectual way to describe a set of unclear criteria and values to differentiate old bullshit from new.

Coming Out For Social Justice.

Political Discussion, Uncategorized

I have, in the past, prided myself on being moderate (probably to a fault), always in the middle and able to see both sides, if not able to see outside of the limitations of a two-sided argument. But lately I find myself being pushed further and further to the left; so consider this my official coming out. I AM A DEMOCRAT, A LIBERAL…AND I AM ALSO A CHRISTIAN.

No, this is not a contradiction. And despite what some of my conservative Christian friends may think, just because I am a Democrat doesn’t mean I am any less of a God fearing, God loving Christian. It doesn’t make me lazy in studying God’s word, or ill informed, or a revisionist, or a phony that believes everything is relative. It does not make me a ‘cultural’ Christian, or a ‘name only’ Christian, or a ‘cry out for god’s help only in times of need’ Christian.

And likewise, my liberal friends, just because I am a Christian doesn’t mean I am foolish, childish, or pedestrian. It doesn’t mean that I accept and reject science on personal whim, or that I am out of touch with reality, or that I am not worthy to sit down with and have an intellectual debate or discussion over coffee. I read and think about material that is more sophisticated than fairytales.

So what exactly do I believe that relates to both my politics and religion?

  1. Faith, Hope, and Love… But the greatest of these is Love.
    1. Matthew 22:37-39 “Love your neighbor as yourself.”
    2. 1 Corinthians 13 “Without love, I am nothing…” This idea about hating the sin but loving the sinner is a deflection. Too many Christians see people through their morals. This idea that certain people deserve this or deserve that, is not grounded in the bible… Truth is, in reality, we all deserve very little. I don’t comprehend how one can allow for grace in their own life without accepting the option for grace in others. To love is to set aside any reason for judgment and see someone as human.

 

  1. I believe in social justice.
    1. Christ calls us to help those in need. The bible does not include the caveat, but only if they deserve it. And it certainly does not include the caveat, but only if you get something back in return. Refusing to help people in need because you assume they are drug addicts, lazy, leaching off of the system, or whatever excuse is used, goes against the teaching of Christ. One doesn’t help someone in order to look or feel good (1 Cor. 13:3-4), or because it’s convenient or cheap.
    2. The fact is, if the Church was doing a better job reaching out, ministering, and providing for people in need, there would be little need for the government to step in.
    3. James 2:3-4, James 2:15-17 “Faith without action is dead.” Praying for those struggling without stepping out to help them is a dead prayer.
    4. To not identify that there is discrimination in our society based on class, race, disability, sexuality, and religion is willful ignorance. Furthermore, doing nothing about it is irresponsible.
    5. Faith is not simply offering up prayer and washing one’s hands of it… Prayer is not action…

 

  1. I do not overvalue money… even money I worked hard to “make.”
    1. To hear Christians state things like _________ confuses me.
      1. “My money is my own.”
      2. “Why should my money go to help people that don’t help themselves?
      3. “Welfare is wasted on drug addicts”
      4. “Teach your kids about taxes, eat half of their ice cream“
        1. (has one not heard of tithing?)
  1. If we truly accept that everything comes from God, and we really believe:
    1. Matthew 6:24 “No one can serve two masters. Either you will hate the one and love the other, or you will be devoted to the one and despise the other. You cannot serve both God and money.
    2. Matthew 6:31-33 So do not worry, saying, ‘What shall we eat?’ or ‘What shall we drink?’ or ‘What shall we wear?’32For the pagans run after all these things, and your heavenly Father knows that you need them.33But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well.
    3. Luke 12:34 34For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.
  1. Then the greed that inspires these statements would not exist.
  2. Yes, we need to be good stewards, but part of stewardship is taking care of the basic needs of all people (despite whether you think they deserve it or not)

 

  1. I believe in being hospitable.
    1. Ezekiel 16:49 “Now this was the sin of your sister Sodom: She and her daughters were arrogant, overfed and unconcerned; they did not help the poor and needy.”
    2. There are very real reasons why people come into our country legally and illegally. To deny the hardship of people fleeing Central America or refugees from Syria/other war zones because of fear is inhumane.
      1. Anecdote: If your child hits their head and is bleeding really bad… will you not break the speed limit or run that stop sign (because you know the street is clear) to get them to the hospital sooner?
      2. The fact is, yes, many people cross our border illegally but many are fleeing immediate and direct violence/threat… Surely we must have a heart for that, right?

 

  1. I believe in the value of life. We distract ourselves with the fabrication of the pro-life/pro-choice debate as if it were a battle between good vs evil.
    1. I certainly believe in the sanctity of life. In fact, I am probably more “pro-life” than the majority of Pro-Lifers… What I mean is this:
      1. I believe that all human life has merit and value… and part of that belief is that my life is not more important than anyone else’s.
      2. I don’t believe in the death penalty.
      3. I don’t believe war is a just cause to kill someone. I understand safety and security… and I’m not calling soldiers murderers. But I also understand that both sides of a war think they are fighting for just causes, and there should be a basic understanding and respect for human life when engaging in war (even if it’s not returned).
      4. In situations of self-defense or protection, I believe one should stand up for themselves, but I do not believe in taking someone else’s life in favor of my own, especially not as the first option.
      5. I’m not saying that I don’t believe in self-defense or protection or in the right of our government and law enforcement to make split second decisions for the greater good, because obviously these things need to happen; our country needs to protect its citizens from real threats (obviously we are not living in a peaceful world). Yet ,that same allowance should be allotted in other avenues of politics.
      6. Whether we want to admit it or not, abortion is just as political as it is moral. And to say that there is not a battle going on over what control women have over their own bodies is just as naïve as oversimplifying real war. The sweeping moral argument against abortion is a tool of diversion used to take away simple and basic rights from women that have nothing to do with decisions of life… (both sides of the isle might disagree with this middle of the road statement… meh.)

 

  1. We are known by our fruits.
    1. Galatians 5:22-23 If the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness,23gentleness and self-control.
    2. And If “Against such things there is no law.”
    3. Then, as Christians we need to stop spewing hateful and derisive rhetoric. This is not an issue of being “politically correct” or an issue of “speaking one’s mind.” We need to remember Galatians 5:26, Let us not become conceited, provoking and envying each other.”

 

  1. Fellow humans are not our enemy. People with different levels of wealth, ethnicity, race, gender (including gender non-conforming), culture, religion, or sexuality should not be feared but loved. Injustice because of discrimination should be actively fought.