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 Post subject: Moral Values
PostPosted: Sat Feb 19, 2005 2:23 am 
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Subject: Moral Values are on whose side, did you say?


Dr. Robin Meyers' Speech to Students at Oklahoma University

As some of you know, I am minister of Mayflower Congregational Church in Oklahoma City, an Open an Affirming, Peace and Justice church in northwest Oklahoma City, and Professor of Rhetoric at Oklahoma City University. But you would most likely have encountered me on the pages of the Oklahoma Gazette, where I have been a columnist for six years, and hold the record for the most number of angry letters to the editor.

Tonight, I join the ranks of those who are angry, because I have watched as the faith I love has been taken over by fundamentalists who claim to speak for Jesus, but whose actions are anything but Christian.

We've heard a lot lately about so-called "moral values" as having swung the election to President Bush. Well, I'm a great believer in moral values, but we need to have a discussion, all over this country, about exactly what constitutes a moral value - I mean, what are we talking about? Because we don't get to make them up as we go along, especially not if we are people of faith. We have an inherited tradition of what is right and wrong, and moral is as moral does.

Let me give you just a few of the reasons why I take issue with those in power who claim moral values are on their side:

a. When you start a war on false pretenses, and then act as if your deceptions are justified because you are doing God's will, and that your critics are either unpatriotic or lacking in faith, there are some of us who have given our lives to teaching and preaching the faith who believe that this is not only not moral, but immoral.

b. When you live in a country that has established international rules for waging a just war, build the United Nations on your own soil to enforce them, and then arrogantly break the very rules you set down for the rest of the world, you are doing something immoral.

c. When you claim that Jesus is the Lord of your life, and yet fail to acknowledge that your policies ignore his essential teaching, or turn
them on their head (you know, Sermon on the Mount, stuff like that we must never return to violence for violence and that those who live by
the sword will die by the sword), you are doing something immoral.

d. When you act as if the lives of Iraqi civilians are not as important as the lives of American soldiers, and refuse to even count them, you are doing something immoral.

e. When you find a way to avoid combat in Vietnam, and then question the patriotism of someone who volunteered to fight, and came home a hero, you are doing something immoral.

f. When you ignore the fundamental teachings of the gospel, which says that the way the strong treat the weak is the ultimate ethical test, by giving tax breaks to the wealthiest among us so the strong will get stronger and the weak will get weaker, you are doing something immoral.

g. When you wink at the torture of prisoners, and deprive so-called "enemy combatants" of the rules of the Geneva Convention, which your own country helped to establish and insists that other countries follow, you are doing something immoral.

h. When you claim that the world can be divided up into the good guys and the evil doers, slice up your own nation into those who are with you, or with the terrorists - and then launch a war which enriches your own friends and seizes control of the oil to which we are addicted--instead of helping us to kick the habit, you are doing something immoral.

i. When you fail to veto a single spending bill, but ask us to pay for a war with no exit strategy and no end in sight, creating an enormous deficit that hangs like a great millstone around the necks of our children, you are doing something immoral.

j. When you cause most of the rest of the world to hate a country that was once the most loved country in the world, and act like it doesn't matter what others think of us, only what God thinks of you, you have done something immoral.

k. When you use hatred of homosexuals as a wedge issue to turn out record numbers of evangelical voters, and use the Constitution as a tool of discrimination, you are doing something immoral.

l. When you favor the death penalty, and yet claim to be a follower of Jesus, who said an eye for an eye was the old way, not the way of the kingdom, you are doing something immoral.

m. When you dismantle countless environmental laws designed to protect the earth which is God's gift to us all, so that the corporations that bought you and paid for your favors will make higher profits while our children breathe dirty air and live in a toxic world, you have done something immoral. The earth belongs to the Lord, not Halliburton.

n. When you claim that our God is bigger than their God, and that our killing is righteous, while theirs is evil, we have begun to resemble the enemy we claim to be fighting, and that is immoral. We have met the enemy, and the enemy is us.

o. When you tell people that you intend to run and govern as a "compassionate conservative," using the word which is the essence of all religious faiths - compassion - and then show no compassion for anyone who disagrees with you, and no patience with those who cry to you for help, you are doing something immoral.

p. When you talk about Jesus constantly, who was a healer of the sick, but do nothing to make sure that anyone who is sick can go to see a doctor, even if she doesn't have a penny in her pocket, you are doing something immoral.

q. When you put judges on the bench who are racist, and will set women back a hundred years, and when you surround yourself with preachers who say gays ought to be killed, you are doing something immoral.

I'm tired of people thinking that because I'm a Christian, I must be a supporter of President Bush, or that because I favor civil rights and gay rights I must not be a person of faith.

I'm tired of people saying that I can't support the troops but oppose the war. I heard that when I was your age - when the Vietnam War was raging. We knew that that war was wrong, and you know that this war is wrong - the only question is how many people are going to die before these make-believe Christians are removed from power?

This country is bankrupt. The war is morally bankrupt. The claim of this administration to be Christian is bankrupt. And the only people who can turn things around are people like you--young people who are just beginning to wake up to what is happening to them. It's your country to take back. It's your faith to take back. It's your future to take back.

Don't be afraid to speak out. Don't back down when your friends begin to tell you that the cause is righteous and that the flag should be wrapped around the cross, while the rest of us keep our mouths shut. Real Christians take chances for peace. So do Real Jews, and Real Muslims, and Real Hindus, and Real Buddhists--so do all the faith traditions of the world at their heart believe one thing: life is precious.

Every human being is precious. Arrogance is the opposite of faith. Greed is the opposite of charity. And believing that one has never made a mistake is the mark of a deluded man, not a man of faith.

And war - war is the greatest failure of the human race - and thus the greatest failure of faith. There's an old rock song, whose lyrics say it all: "War, what is it good for? Absolutely nothing."

And what is the dream of the prophets? That we should study war no more, that we should beat our swords into plowshares and our spears into pruning hooks. Who would Jesus bomb, indeed? How many wars does it take to know that too many people have died? What if they gave a war and nobody came? Maybe one day we will find out.

February 13, 2005
 
 
© SPIEGEL ONLINE 2005
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Reproduction only allowed with the permission of SPIEGELnet GmbH
 


 


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PostPosted: Sat Feb 19, 2005 4:21 am 
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Excellent post, dori.

This fellow has the Bushie Fundies pegged...to a T.

Catherine

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PostPosted: Sat Feb 19, 2005 9:28 pm 
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Great article. It really drives home the point that what Bush is doing is the opposite of what Christianity stands for.
Bush also making a mockery of anyone who believe's in God. Most people who have lied and killed and say that God has told them do it, are usually locked away in institutions. .

-Eva


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PostPosted: Sat Feb 19, 2005 10:52 pm 
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How right you are Eva. And most people who hear voices and think they are god talking to them are locked away in institutions too.

How soon can we lock Bush away in an institution?


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PostPosted: Sat Feb 19, 2005 11:00 pm 
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Not soon enough if you ask me.
I bet he has given hope to many people who hear God speaking to them too.
Now, they know one day they can be president too!!


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PostPosted: Sat Feb 19, 2005 11:07 pm 
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I wonder if just anybody who hears god talk to them can be president, or if you have to have brain damage from all the recreational drugs you took to do that?


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sun Feb 20, 2005 9:31 pm 
Dori,

Great article!
I hope the day comes soon when people of America and the rest of the world see that bush does not represent the Christian religion, faith or values. I hope and pray for that day, but I fear the damage that is being done, might never be undone.

Thanks for the article!

Cheers,
Lucas


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PostPosted: Tue Mar 01, 2005 4:16 am 
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Lucas, if people who believe themselves to be Christian were to follow the teachings of Christ instead of bragging about how Christian they are the world would be in good shape. Thank you for your thoughts on the article. I like Dr. Robin Meyers, the author of this very much.

If only people would pay attention.....


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 Post subject: Value ...
PostPosted: Tue Mar 01, 2005 5:45 am 
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They value 3 things - Money, Power and Control !

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue Mar 01, 2005 12:55 pm 
Dori,

I agree with you 110%. There are a lot of "Pretenders" in this world. People love to call themselves christians, then turn around and do everything that contradicts the faith they claim to be part of of. In the New Testament, Jesus warns us of these people. They are called the Pharisees and Sudducees. He says, "Take heed and beware of the leaven of the Pharisees and the Sudducees." (Matt 16:6) In other words, watch out for the rise of these pretenders, since they do more harm then good.
The Bush Administration is a perfect example.
"For they [Pharisees] bind heavy burdens, hard to bear. and they lay them on men's shoulders; but they themselves will not move them one bit with their fingers." (Matt 23:4)

I liked your last line...
"if only people would pay attention" :) its so true.
keep posting great articles like these. thanks!
Cheers.


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PostPosted: Wed Mar 02, 2005 8:32 pm 
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Right now Lucas, the Supreme Court is deciding whether it is constitutional to display the 10 Commancments on state property.

In my moral view, it is far more important that people follow the Commandments than display them.

Care to guess how many of the people who are clammering to have the Commandments displayed on public property actually obey them? Unfortunately, we are a nation of hypocrits, as you say, like the Pharisees and the Sudducees. I am still waiting to see any of the loud religious persons who has not coveted.

Jesus told us to be humble in our worship and our approach to others. Shouting to the world about how humble you are just doesn't cut it in my book. We are to lead by example, not by haranguing. Why don't people understand this?

I see Bush telling us he is humble all the time, I have yet to see him actually BE humble.


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 Post subject: Pic says it all ...
PostPosted: Sat Mar 12, 2005 4:19 am 
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Check this out!

http://www.rense.com/1.imagesG/jeszus.jpg

Sir...

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PostPosted: Sat Mar 19, 2005 6:45 am 
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Right on, Sir!

I love the people who can make an idea stand out this way. And that IS just the way Bush would run against Jesus. Right now though, he is using Jesus as a marketing tool.

Rightwingers have no shame.


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PostPosted: Tue Mar 22, 2005 6:57 am 
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Hey, maybe the people should send a team of Exorcist to the Black House !

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PostPosted: Mon Jun 06, 2005 11:08 am 
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Sir...do you have any further research on this? Thanks...

Catherine

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"Behind every great fortune lies a great crime."
Honore de Balzac

"Democrats work to help people who need help.
That other party, they work for people who don't need help.
That's all there is to it."

~Harry S. Truman


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