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Monday, February 4, 2008


posted by on February 4 at 13:27 PM

I’m in the air most of the day today… so no ability to Slog. I’d wish I had the time to get something up explaining the difference between dislike and intolerance to Joel Connelly, but my layover’s too brief. I’ll post something tonight when I arrive in Pittsburgh. Anyone so motivated as to spell out the difference for Joel in some manner that might catch his attention—perhaps in Jelly donuts arranged on the sidewalk outside the PI’s building?—is more than welcome to do so in the meantime.

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Mr. Connelly has found a way to physically eat his e-mails. Why waste your time when all he's going to do is print it out and shove his face?

Posted by Mr. Poe | February 4, 2008 1:37 PM

Are you making fun of the guy because he's overweight?

Posted by Dan Ravaged | February 4, 2008 1:43 PM

No. What gave you that idea?


Posted by Mr. Poe | February 4, 2008 1:46 PM

Obama's cool and all, but why does he have to come out with stuff like this?:

"The discomfort of some progressives with any hint of religion has often prevented us from effectively addressing issues in moral terms."

That's not the first time I've heard him bust out the old religion = morality trope. Grrrr.

Posted by Levislade | February 4, 2008 1:48 PM

yeah, he has confused "intolerant" with "dislike" and it is an important distinction. you don't advocate for limiting a people's rights when you dislike them, but you do so when you don't tolerate them. i'll be sure to point that out to him. though i must admit to agreeing with a lot else in the article. i hope he's right about the xtians changing their focus, and i would like to applaud and encourage them. the atheists and the secular left need to compromise with these people, and we need to reach out to them, in the interests of progress.

Posted by ellarosa | February 4, 2008 1:51 PM

Whose rights shall we "compromise with them" on, ellarosa? Unless they're willing to drop their demands on gay rights, women's rights, reproductive rights, the right to access to birth control, etc., we can't work with them. It can't be, "Okay, we'll give you a little climate change, a little anti-poverty. Now you give us an abortion ban and an anti-gay marriage amendment to the U.S. Constitution."

Posted by Dan Savage | February 4, 2008 1:58 PM

I think you've got something up already, Dan.

Posted by Cat in Chicago | February 4, 2008 2:03 PM

I find it difficult to compromise or find common ground with people who have invisible friends. I live in reality.

Posted by maxine | February 4, 2008 2:04 PM

All my invisible friends would look like spaghetti and meatballs if they could be seen, which they can't.

Posted by Will in Seattle | February 4, 2008 2:08 PM

i'm not talking about compromising basic rights, dan. i'm in favor of the right to choose, gay marriage, all of it. working out deals with the reasonable religious people doesn't mean giving ken hutcherson everything he wants, for instance. i said as much to connelly when i emailed him, by the way.

Posted by ellarosa | February 4, 2008 2:09 PM

Mmmmm Spaghetti

Posted by maxine | February 4, 2008 2:11 PM

Discrimination : Not hiring a qualified obese person because of concern that he might eat all the doughnuts in the office.

Intolerance : Making a(nother) comment about doughnuts when disagreeing with someone who appears large in his head shot.

Does that sum it up, Dan?

Here's an extra definition:

2008 'journalism' : waving red flags in front of local colleagues to increase readership.

Posted by MJ | February 4, 2008 2:19 PM

I have to agree with Ellarosa @10 on this one, Dan. Trying to find common ground with progressive Christians like Jim Wallis is not the same thing as adopting Pat Robertson's preferred policy platform. The point is that these new progressive evangelicals finally want to do something about climate change, so why shouldn't we, the secular left, be open to working with them on that? Same thing goes for Darfur and global poverty.

You're right in that there's some things we won't be able to cooperate/compromise with them on, like reproductive rights, but the idea that they have to fall in line with every single one of our positions before we can even begin to work with them on issues of mutual agreement is wrong.

Posted by Hernandez | February 4, 2008 2:20 PM

How the fuck do you compromise with people who believe we should throw away the Constitution and replace it with the Bible? Or that we're all sinners (or murderers, in the case of abortion supporters), doomed to spend eternity burning in Hell? Oh, sure, they'll "compromise" on things that aren't part of their core belief system - just as long as you don't expect them to make any real changes.

Posted by Fifty-Two-Eighty | February 4, 2008 2:35 PM

Very few Christians want to "throw away the Constitution and replace it with the Bible". Smearing 75% of the population with the Pat Robertson brush is just intellectually and, yes, morally wrong. There are a lot of different kinds of Christian out there. Some of them -- a LOT of them -- even agree with you on some of your key issues.

But if you can't find a common ground that allows Christians to see why your beliefs are valid, you haven't got a prayer, now or under Obama or any other candidate, ever ever ever. You're doomed.

A lot of Christians are willing to talk about the issues that are important to you and them both; what are you offering? Or do you just want it all handed to you without a discussion? 'Cause that's not going to happen.

Obama is absolutely right. And he's the only candidate who is taking a righteous message right to the people who oppose righteousness: he is PERSUADING THEM TO CHANGE THEIR MINDS. All you're doing is persuading them that they were probably right about "people like that".

Posted by Fnarf | February 4, 2008 2:45 PM

I think it's a good sign when the extreme example of "their" side is hate-spewing bigot, while the extreme example of "our" side is... well, a guy who dislikes hate-spewing bigots.

Posted by Julie | February 4, 2008 2:50 PM
Very few Christians want to "throw away the Constitution and replace it with the Bible".


Posted by Mr. Poe | February 4, 2008 2:53 PM

Ack! Where will I get my fresh and fascinating murdering moms and pedo priest updates? Hurry back - I can't wait much longer!

Posted by Burgin99 | February 4, 2008 2:53 PM

Fnarf, I will admit that there are a lot of "Christians" in this country who only think about their religion for one hour on Sunday. I'm not real worried about them. But when FIFTY PERCENT of the people in this country don't believe in evolution, well, I think maybe you should re-evaluate your assumptions.

Posted by Fifty-Two-Eighty | February 4, 2008 3:18 PM

So, 5280, let's hear YOUR plan for changing their minds.

Posted by Fnarf | February 4, 2008 3:19 PM


Posted by Soo | February 4, 2008 3:22 PM


Easy. Civil War.

Posted by Mr. Poe | February 4, 2008 3:23 PM

Television, the internet, and better education are slowly getting the job done, but it's gonna take time. Cripes, there are still people around who remember the Depression. You're not gonna change their minds.

Posted by Fifty-Two-Eighty | February 4, 2008 3:29 PM

Out to PA to SCAB some more for Bill Maher?

Posted by ecce homo | February 4, 2008 3:39 PM

@24 - they called off the strike, haven't you been paying attention, e.h.?

Posted by Will in Seattle | February 4, 2008 3:42 PM

@20. I'm thrilled that there is a Christian movement that care about genocide and global warming. I am totally on board with reducing the need for abortions through better education and access to birth control. I don't know who started this movement or how it caught on -- we should figure it out and try to make headway in the same way.

But... I think there are some issues where nothing other than time will get people to change their minds. Gay rights might be one of them. I have (calmly, and respectfully) had "the gay conversation" countless times, trying to convince many religious folks I know that gays should have equal rights, there's nothing wrong with being gay etc. I don't think I've ever changed anyone's mind -- somehow they just "know" that being gay is wrong (you know, through prayer and their own dialogue with God).

Posted by Julie | February 4, 2008 3:47 PM

@25 you are expecting ecce homo to pay attention to facts rather than make some insult the premise of which (union solidarity) he likely doesn't believe in. Due to his paleo-conservative tendencies

Posted by vooodooo84 | February 4, 2008 3:57 PM


They can believe that being gay is wrong all they like. We might make some gains in arguing that giving gay people equal rights under the law won't make the sky fall, and that they're still free to dislike gay people even if gays have equal protection.

Posted by keshmeshi | February 4, 2008 4:03 PM

Personally, it's been a long journey escaping the brainwashing and mind killing I suffered as a helpless child. That's what "Christianity" does. No matter how benign it tries to appear with it's assurances on one hand and it's threats on the other(imaginary hell), it's long history of the most vile inhumanity gives it away. It is an intrinsically disordered belief system that robs people of their cognisent reasoning. Start by reaching out to the world of knowledge. Science is a long and deliberate effort to see beyond the myths and superstitions of an old past. And tell Joel Connelly there are no moderate religionists. They all demand you believe their tribal myths and they all seek to undermine rights and freedoms, by their very nature they can't abide real freedom. Defy Christian tyranny at every level or see freedom perish!

Posted by Vince | February 4, 2008 4:07 PM

if christians are the enemy as a blanketed group, you've already lost. Episcopals are christians, but they have gays and females in the clergy and are pretty awesome all around. I'm sorry to say it but antagonizing a group of progressive christians because some smaller % are a bunch of raging assholes doesnt help you.

maxine, maybe you could benefit from the charity of church to help you with feeding your children instead of relying on tainted school lunches. you may not believe in god, but he believes in you.

Posted by Bellevue Ave | February 4, 2008 4:26 PM
Posted by Bellevue Ave | February 4, 2008 4:38 PM

@30 & 31

oh for chrissakes.

Posted by misrule | February 4, 2008 5:08 PM

yea, the truth that there are christians out there that are pro woman and pro gay.

Posted by Bellevue Ave | February 4, 2008 5:18 PM

@27 and #25

You guys are serious? Perhaps someone should tell the writers and the head of their union, as well as the head of the producers groups that it is over. As of this morning:

"Despite rumors and media reports of a deal struck over the weekend, WGA presidents Patric Verrone and Michael Winship e-mailed their members Sunday, saying, "We are still in talks and do not yet have a contract... Picketing will resume on Monday." The Alliance of Motion Picture Television Producers (AMPTP) also waved off reports of a done deal, though an AMPTP source said to "stay tuned.",8599,1709637,00.html

While things are looking good, the strike is MOST DEFINATELY NOT OVER!

You two should get your facts strait before you open your pie holes.

Posted by ecce homo | February 4, 2008 6:00 PM

Jesus, Bellevue, low blow much.

Posted by Julie | February 4, 2008 7:30 PM

I live in Central Oregon. I'm a devout Christian and church-goer. I'm also pro gay rights, pro choice, pro separation of church/state, and so on. Anything you can name, I come down on the liberal side of the ledger.

Savage is every bit as bad as the right-wing nuts he rails against. He just comes from the other end of the spectrum.

It's embarrassing to watch, quite frankly.

Posted by Dan Ravaged | February 4, 2008 9:03 PM

Exactamundo Dan Ravaged!!!

The SCAB is a POS who is a bigot.

I suspect he neglects any sort of spiritual education of his child, therefore robbing his son of any meaningful relationship with a power greater than himself later in life.


No different than a racist branding the whole blacks are inferior rap into the heads of his children, therefore robbing his children of the wonderful experiences of diversity.

Posted by ecce homo | February 4, 2008 9:07 PM

Ecce, really - The closest you've ever come to a "meaningful relationship with a power greater than yourself" was those two months you tortured those poor souls at Foxxes with your "Like a Prayer" review. Thank God someone finally stole the CD player.

Posted by catalina vel-duray | February 4, 2008 10:28 PM

Pittsburgh is a beautiful city. APPRECIATE IT!

Although it's hard to buy liquor in PA, and you can only buy beer by the case unless you go to a bar and spend $12 for a six pack.

Posted by Nora | February 5, 2008 7:05 AM

@15 +1
@28 +1
@10 +1

great points.

bellevue, good posts, but was the low blow necessary? not cool -- but i think you like it.

Levislade and maxine: your attitudes are those that keep a chasm between those who "believe" and those who do not, just like the bigots who want to ban gay marriage and force their morality on you. first off, we need to get along with each other, tolerate each other, and that is difficult to do when one or both sides absolutely refuse to respect the differences of the other. but secondly, not even all christians are as bad as you think. from cultural christians, to gnostics, to those that believe in a jungian spirituality, not all christians even have "imaginary friends" or a moral agenda.

Posted by infrequent | February 5, 2008 9:48 AM

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