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Aug. 3rd, 2004 @ 10:24 pm "One Man's God Squad", a review of Rolling Stone's Article
Current Mood: frustratedfrustrated

I just received the latest RollingStone mag this past week, and I really enjoy this magazine for a couple of reasons: 1) it provides me with a snapshot of the emerging American culture; 2) the slant of the magazine so clear I never have to wonder from which direction the writers might be coming from - what you see is what they think.

In the latest issue, there is an article entitled, "One Man's God Squad"and is a frightening and shameful article from this readers perspective. Written by Kimberly Sevick, it details the holy crusade of Troy Newman, president of Operation Rescue and it thoroughly details the efforts of his pro-life organization's efforts to shut down a notorious abortion clinic located in Wichita, Kansas. As shameful as his efforts are, the article is surprisingly mild given RS typical liberal position.

I guess when I read this article the facts are so clear that even with my strong pro-life position I can't help but side with those who are repulsed by the actions of organizations such as this. The mafia style attempts to strong arm even secondary and third sources of business that have even the remotest of connections to the clinic employees is simply stunning. Unfortunately, I believe organizations such as this, with their jihad-like rhetoric, form much of the ugly pock on the face of the Church as a whole. In my view, Newman's group of psychological ruffians are in the ranks of a political Al-Qaida that are apart of the social ills of this country. Rather than bringing healing and understanding they polarize positions with violent charges that erupt into their own desires for publicity. Shameful, simply shameful.

At the end of this article I was left with a hollow feeling that made me sympathetic for those who choose the route of abortion. Unfortunately, RollingStone just highlights the biological reasons one might consider abortion, and fails to mention those who, out of shame, fear, or at-risk life styles consider this option. (Which is revealing in its own right) But despite this, I can't help but think that "good Christian soldiers" such a Newman only accentuate the guilt and increase the victimization that occurs to these women. Actions such as this, in my opinion, are just another way the Church is viewed as stoning culture when they should be loving them.

Thoughts?

soman_fighter

 

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somanche2
soman_fighter:
From:(Anonymous)
Date:August 5th, 2004 07:25 am (UTC)
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Wow, that article shows exactly how NOT to deal with abortion clinics.
It also stinks that the liberal readers will hate God even more because of people like this. Don't these radicals realize what they are doing to the un-churched? Don't they see the people they will push away from God and into the arms of the World!
Praying for them all now!
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From:agentgross
Date:August 5th, 2004 12:32 pm (UTC)

Speaking of Righteous Anger. . .

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As a general rule, in the effort to produce illuminating dialogue, I make it a point to take exception to at least something that is said in any given post to which I refer. After all, it’s not really much of a conversation if all that it consists of is “I agree,” “Me too,” “Yep,” etc.

In this case, however, I feel that I have to agree with my good friend Soman. The abortion mills of our country are akin to the death camps of various genocidal regimes throughout the ages, and need to be put to a stop, but when we sink to this level, we fail to accomplish anything, and disillusion people to the message of Christianity. The ends do not justify the means.

The last time that I was this upset at a “Christian” group for the things that they were doing under the banner of Jesus, was when a read a historically accurate novel about one of the crusades. The things that people will do and claim God's endorsement are astounding.

I don’t know how many of you have heard of the “Crisis Pregnancy Centers” but they seem to have an approach that I think you might actually find Jesus endorsing. What they do, is, rather than condemn, help women who find themselves pregnant and in a bad situation. I don’t know too much about what they do, but it seems better.

Does anyone know about this organization’s methods and motives? Certain Pro-Choice organizations that I found say bad things about them, but I don’t have any first hand info.

Anyone?
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From:fleur77
Date:August 5th, 2004 01:48 pm (UTC)
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Severing the bond...its ironic is this? Women sever something in a relationship with a man - a love short circuit, then sever some inner circuit to life within them, and have a man perform a physical severing from the remaining life. All the while your Christians stand outside perform a social and spiritual severing representing a God that willing severed a relationship with his son so Christians can have eternal life.

America, land of the beautiful.
From:(Anonymous)
Date:August 5th, 2004 04:22 pm (UTC)

Abortion is wrong.

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but we as christians have no right to damage other property or harm anyone to stop it. We can only voice our disgust . Beyond that, we see radicals , who arent christians by there actions alone, shaming the Lord even further. I agree that this adds fuel to the"liberal" christian ( if such a thing can exist) fire against conservative christians ( once again, if there is such a thing). However, I do not sympathize with people who have abortions, they are wrong. I wonder if Soman also sympathizes with pedophiles?
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From:soman_fighter
Date:August 5th, 2004 08:43 pm (UTC)

Re: Abortion is wrong.

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Dear Courageously Anonymous,

The term sympathetic seems to have you rather upset and quick to place me in a "liberal" category. Please allow me to illuminate what you failed to read. When I state that I am sympathetic - I am even more so than you can possibly imagine. My sympathy comes three-fold.

1) These women for whatever reason - which I think we both can agree is morally wrong in light of the text that we hold sacred - make an incredibly tragic decision. I cannot fathom the degree of darkness that surrounds them during the days and hours up to and after acting upon this decision. If they only knew how much God loved them and if they could for just a moment embrace the possibility of new day in Him, maybe things would begin to feel better for them. Hope's quenching rain can do a lot for a thirsty soul.

2) Furthermore, my sympathy extends to these women who, following this tragic choice, are then verbally and physically intimidated by rage filled Christians ("if such a thing can exist") and as Fleur77 so aptly put it, are "severed" from even connecting to God in a healing and forgiving embrace because "we can only voice
our disgust."

Has your voice become so hoarse that you cannot even express love?

3) Lastly, I take you to the text, the Bible, the source of Truth, and I refer you to the case of the Samaritan woman at the well.(I'm sure your familiar, need I really cite it for you?) Its here that my sympathy springs forth:

Jesus looks into the eyes of a woman caught in a cycle of adultery, and speaks to her in a manner of genuine sympathy, love, discipline, and enormous compassion - forgives her and tells her to go and sin no more. As we all are aware, she embraces the new start with joy and thanksgiving.

You see Courageously Anonymous, my sympathy extends out to her, like these women, because I know that people are people and when that Samaritan woman rounded the corner after talking with her Lord and just disappeared beyond his sight - she would immediately encounter the harsh reality of "haters" who could not possibly fathom the concept of forgiving her. My belief is that one drop of redemption, a sympathetic, disciplining, loving hand and the kind eye of Jesus could carry her through the crowd of people who felt disgust at her very presence. This is the power and authority of who my Jesus is.

My sympathy extends beyond your limited interpretation of what I wrote, but hopefully you can rest assured that I am truly on the side of love, the side of Christ.

As for your last parting question, please allow me the latitude of rewording it, "I wonder if Soman also sympathizes with (the likes of people like me)?

Yes, of course I do. Need I really elaborate?

Soman_Fighter

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From:(Anonymous)
Date:August 9th, 2004 05:14 pm (UTC)

Re: Abortion is wrong.

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I can only say that your comments as a whole, on all the threads ive read of yours, including the review of the Da Vinci Code (in which you compared a blasphemer with some of the greatest theologians to ever live), have led me to say you are liberal christian. You have had compassion for many groups in your writings which i commend you for; however, you r implying that there are other inspired works beyond the canon of the Bible and your attitude towards homosexuality have led you outside the realm of christianity. If you actually see yourself in the same light as an unrepentant homosexual or a pedophile (which, based on recitivism rates, rarely truley repent, turn away from, there sin.), I feel sad for your soul. I do not empathize with unbelievers, nor do I show them love. They hate God through their unbelief and thus He hates them. That is entirely biblical. you mean to say that God has a tolerance for Sin and even more for unrepentant sin. I wonder than if you would let that pedophile or outwardly homosexual person watch your child? I wouldn't. I would also pour through the bible again and find all the instances God has used fire and brimstone to destroy something. Then ask yourself how Tolerant your idol of a god is?
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From:soman_fighter
Date:August 9th, 2004 06:49 pm (UTC)

Re: Abortion is wrong.

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Dear Courageously Anonymous,

First, allow me to apologize. Your numerous typos and fragments show your hand as being upset. What is a friendly discussion has apparently turned personal on your behalf and you feel offended. If you feel the need to discuss this in person I’m not hard to find, I’m sure you know how to find me. But again, I apologize (sincerely).

In what will be my last response to our circular tit-for-tat, I can only say the following in response(s) to your reply:

1) Am I a liberal Christian? I plead guilty. I plead this on the basis of my example, Jesus Christ. He came, as you know, not to abolish the law but to uphold it; yet, He flouted the strict pharisaical regime that bound the people into a lifeless religion. My passion, and call, in life is to challenge the vacuum packed thinking of today’s pharisaical thinkers. Jesus never believed in evolution, but He most certainly believed in revolution. I am a disciple of Christ – not a Christian in your holiness definition –but someone who desperately seeks to follow in the footsteps of the Messiah. If it is all of this that has you so upset, then so be it. So, if I am liberal by your binding definition I am guilty as charged.

2) Da Vinci Code – get over it. Last time I checked it was in fiction, when Dan Brown decides to call it the Truth then I too will scream heresy. Until then, you’re a big boy, look up the definition of fiction and see if the Code meets the criteria.


3) You conflict yourself with your own words, perhaps this is indicative of frustration/anger, but how can I “show compassion for many groups” (of which you commend me for) and yet you harbor hatred towards those who fail to see Jesus as you do. As for homosexuality, pedophilia, and other blatantly deviant lifestyles – we concur on these being wrong; but we differ as far as peoples redemptive souls. You see none – I see Grace. IF – and I believe this is a huge IF – these people do repent they will be many “of the last” that will be ahead of you and I in the line to the Great Feast. For those who fail to repent – let not there blood be on my hands – judgment is the Lords. Last time I checked, God is a bigger boy than the both of us – He can fight His own fights without me bludgeoning my neighbor. We are called to love – unconditionally. Pour that over your Bible.

4) As for God having a tolerance for sin? I believe His tolerance is way greater than yours. Because you seem very obsessed with pedophilia and other deviant activities, I have to ask -have you been hurt? Have you something to confess to God, release pain and seek healing? That’s not an attack, thats a sincere question. There is a ton of sin in your Church and your community, and religiosity is one of them. Does God focus on some sins more than others? No, but His forgiveness abounds to anyone who would repent of their ways. Perhaps incorporating this into your own theological system could be beneficial.


5)As for my house and my future children, I return to a former method of response with some latitude of your words, You "wonder if I (would let even you) watch my children?” That’s tough, truly tough. My house is not made of glass, but equally as fragile. However, my children will be bold, solid, and profoundly secure in their understanding of who Jesus is – their fates will be secure. Allowing you into my house, knowing that your rhetoric would challenge them, I would allow it. Perhaps that’s too perfect, but after fifteen minutes of staring at the end of a blinking cursor preceded by a question mark, that is my honest and only answer. Why? So that some likes you might hear the wisdom of God that pours from the mouths of His children.

I wish you well Courageously Anonymous. I will be continuing to pray for you. As will all the others who visit this site and read our conversation.

Farewell, soman_fighter
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