Tuesday, September 19, 2017

CONFESSIONS AND ADJUSTMENTS: CHANGES AT "INCOMPREHNSIBLE"

It is 10:13 a.m. on Tuesday. I am in the midst of my morning routine of reading the Scripture and praying, working out, eating breakfast, and watching the news. I hammered out some more on my best selling novel which will hit bookstores sometime after I hit it a few more times (in other words, I'm not finished yet!). It's been a fairly decent, if not routine, morning. Before long, I will be getting ready to go to my (paying) job.

So now it's time to think about my other ongoing project: "the blog."

Someone asked me recently about the fact that I haven't posted any entries lately. I didn't have a good response, except that was a good topic about which to blog. It seems like my lack of blog activity comes down to two things: 1. Lack of time and 2. Lack of focus.

I could probably manage the time thing better. I have seen and used those charts that track my day in 15 minute intervals and I clearly have chunks of time that some may consider "wasted." I won't try to defend these moments, but sure--I can do better. And compared to some seasons in my life, I am doing much, much better. So chalk up time management to an ongoing process.

The deal with lack of focus is somewhat related to time. You see, I have a very vivid imagination and a very active brain. When I watch the news, I will often carry on an imaginary dialogue with the politician, activist, or celebrity, systematically refuting his or her points. I'm constantly reviewing my teaching notes in my mind or plotting my next creative endeavor.

But what happens is when I start to put everything to writing. Blogging is a wonderful way to express one's views, opinions, and personality. It's been said that blogging is one of the last, truest forms of free speech. And I want to opine on everything. My day's activities, my latest ideas and encouragements in the area of children's ministry, the notes from a message I gave, a summary of my vacation or day trip, an analysis of the President's speech, an evaluation of the latest legislation affecting families, a review of the latest movie, a look at my hobby, a promotion of my book (look for it in bookstores--when it's finished!), and a dozen other thoughts clamor for my blogging attention. And did I mention, I want to do it now? Right now. This minute.

I don't know if this a "thing," but my writing activities often suffer from "priority paralysis." I don't know what to do first, so I end up not doing anything. And that, dear reader, is why I don't post as much as I could/should/want to. Do I want to spend an hour plus writing a summary of a great kids' curriculum for Sunday School when a congressman just said something inflammatory and wrong during a speech? Hey, it's a great curriculum and I can't wait to let my kidmin friends know what I think about it, but I really need to add some balanced, cool-headed analysis to shed some light on the politician's speech. So, I write nothing.

So, I started thinking. I got out my yellow pad (the greatest invention for the enhancement of human thought) and asked, "what do I want to talk about?" I started this blog about 12 years ago. A quick scan of the topics show that "INCOMPREHENSIBLE" has often had a bit of an identity crisis. So I'm going to focus, organize, and compartmentalize my thoughts. So this blog will now be a home for children's ministry/adult ministry related items and personal reflections on stuff in my life. I am in the process of creating new homes for all things political/current events, pop culture, and even hobby related. And yes, when I feel I'm ready, I'll start pushing my book on its own blog.

I cannot guarantee that each of these blogs will appear on this particular platform. I may use a pen name for some of the columns. I may even use invited posters from time to time. But hopefully, by structuring my blogging in this fashion, I can focus on one subject at a time without wondering how to fit it all into INCOMPREHENSIBLE.

As always, I welcome your feedback and comments (unless you're a spammy robot; in which case, move along!).

Thursday, June 01, 2017

PAYBACK TIME AND SEVERED HEADS

I was about to swear off political posts, but thoughts began to flood my mind late into last night and I figured I ought to write something. I did this in a hurry, so if you notice some spelling, grammatical, or other mechanical irregularities, please forgive me. And, as always, I welcome your comments, but be nice and respectful. We're all friends here.

Kathy Griffin held up what looked like the severed head of the President. An amazing backlash ensued from across the political spectrum, with pundits and pollsters, liberals and conservatives, in rare agreement that this crossed the line. CNN severed ties with Ms. Griffin and there's even talk of a Secret Service investigation. Kathy Griffin even publically apologized for the incident.

But it really did not come as a big surprise that "counter memes" began appearing, showing pictures of President Obama being lynched, hung, stabbed, and mutilated and the posters wondering why "conservatives" weren't that upset at those acts of disrespect.

I can't speak for all conservatives, but as a conservative, yes, I was upset at the disrespectful way President Obama was treated. As I've written before, I have a personal code about respecting the highest office of the land. This includes being careful to use the title President (or alternatively, Mister) when referring to the POTUS, avoiding the use of derogatory nicknames, giving the man the benefit of the doubt and not pouncing on every rumor or allegation, and certainly, not supporting anything suggesting harm or violence against the President.

But one of the myths that "my side" has propagated is that conservatives sat nobly on the sidelines in stoic, respectful silence during the last eight years of Mr. Obama's presidency. Ummm, no. we. did. not. Smarting over the trashing that President Bush received by liberals, we jumped at Mr. Obama and jumped hard. Derogatory nicknames, pushing rumors, and joking about shooting or hanging the President were common place. Some of my conservative friends even went as far as to declare that Obama was "not my President." Sounds familiar, doesn't it?

And now it's payback time, with the liberal left out for revenge. And while we can all agree that Kathy Griffin's horrifying display was, well, horrifying and that it crossed the proverbial line and that it was uncalled for, the fact is, it didn't stop her from doing it in the first place.

The severed head picture is only a visual representation of the overwhelming disrespect accorded to Mr. Trump since before the election. Barely past the first 100 days of the Trump presidency, the liberal left has vowed to resist, counter, stand against, and fight tooth and nail against anything and everything the President does or says. Instead of allowing us to weigh all the evidence and draw our own conclusions, many news outlets declare Mr. Trump's statements false in the headline itself! I mean, why bother reading the article when the reporter has already reached the conclusion for me?

So does Ms. Griffin's stunt sadden and anger me? Yes.

Does it surprise me? No.

We live in a wonderful country, where we are free to disagree with our leaders. And just as I could list the areas in which I disagreed with the politics, policies, and philosophies of President Obama, I could start a list for President Trump.  I can almost guarantee that I will make both sides mad at me to some degree.That's America, people.

But as long as every negative word, every disagreement, every counter-proposal is characterized as "hate speech," we will grow insensitive to truly hateful speech and actions and we will create a climate that seeks to "dish it out" in the same or greater measure. "What's good for the goose is good for the gander." (feel free to supply your own cliché at this point).

My prediction is that, before long, Kathy Griffin will attempt to defend her photo shoot by saying that Mr. Trump provokes that reaction in her. Bit by bit, her fans and celebrity friends will come to her aid, maybe invoking the first amendment, but most certainly saying that Ms. Griffin is only responding to the same heat unleashed on President Obama by the right.

And the cycle will continue.

Wednesday, November 09, 2016

NOVEMBER MUSINGS: EPILOGUE: THE MORNING AFTER

Yeah, I know: I said "November Musings" would be over with my last post. Consider this post a postscript, an epilogue, a sequel.

Donald Trump is now the President-elect. After watching the news coverage, seeing the victory speech of Mr. Trump, the concession speech of Mrs. Clinton, and checking out social media commentary, I feel compelled to offer my own observations, warnings, and exhortations. These are "raw" thoughts, so if they lack a certain subtlety and refinement, well, that's the nature of politics.

1. One of the consistent themes in the news coverage was the sense of surprise."Nobody expected this." "How could the polls be so wrong?" With all due respect to our professional pundits, they began Mr. Trump's candidacy with dismissal. They continued it with the narrative that Mr. Trump only had a small, narrow minded bunch of supporters. But in my decidedly un-scientific observation, Mr. Trump's base was a lot larger and more diverse than the pros admitted.

2. I appreciated the gracious words of Mr. Trump and Mrs. Clinton in their respective speeches. I especially want to commend Mrs. Clinton for "practicing what she preached" in accepting the results of the election with class and dignity.

3.The popular vote shows a razor thin support for Hillary Clinton. Take note: roughly half of the citizens of our country voted for Mrs. Clinton! I strongly dislike the demonizing of the voter. Intelligent, passionate, patriotic citizens supported Hillary Clinton and they cannot be casually dismissed or ignored. We may disagree on issues, but now is the time to address the concerns in a way that unites us.

4.Take note: roughly half the citizens in our country voted for Mr. Trump! I strongly dislike the demonizing of the voter. Intelligent, passionate, patriotic citizens supported Donald Trump and they cannot be casually dismissed or ignored. We may disagree on issues, but now is the time to address the concerns in a way that unites us.

5. (Yes, the previous two points were identical).

6. I'm already seeing opinions around Facebook, particularly from these political opinion "papers," that are heralding the doom of our country. As I mentioned in a previous post in this series, the disaster scenarios that are often predicted by opponents rarely come to pass. Relax folks. Don't leave the country, don't hang your heads in closeted anger, and, whatever you do, don't take a page from the opposition and start digging up conspiracies and voter fraud.

7. Several conservative Republican sites are already gloating. Even Mrs. Clinton's delay in giving her concession speech has been characterized as "cowardly!" Good grief. It's over. Even athletes shake hands after a hard-fought match.  Not to overuse an Anchorman line, but, please, for the good of the country, "Stay classy, conservatives." As I've already pointed out, half the country chose Hillary Clinton. That's a whole lot of people to be against.

8. Finally, a personal note: someone recently said that I was trying to be "politically correct." Them's fightin' words! If you knew me, I mean really knew me, you know that I have very strong political opinions. And I'm not ashamed to tell you that most of my opinions are right (well, I meant as in "correct", but yes, on the political spectrum as well). But as I think I've mentioned in previous entries, I believe how we argue our position is also important. No longer do I feel the need to blow up my opponents when they are wrong. Do you really want to listen to or work with someone who calls you a "cotton headed ninnymuggin?" or characterizes your views as so much "feldercarb?"

9. (on the other hand, I wouldn't mind engaging in dialogue with anyone who can tell me the source of "cotton headed ninnymuggin" and "feldercarb.")

Well, there it is. The real conclusion to my "November Musings" series. And guess what? Jesus is still King of kings and Lord of Lords! Pray for the President-elect and pray for our country. Let's turn now to lighter things. . .

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Sunday, November 06, 2016

NOVEMBER MUSINGS #5 LAST THOUGHTS: MY CODE

As I write this, our country (USA) will be electing a new President in a little more than 48 hours. The two leading contenders are Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton and Republican nominee Donald Trump. And to hear supporters of both candidates say it, this will be one of the most important elections in our history.

But regardless of who wins (and trust me, barring a third party upset of epic proportions, one of them will win), one thing that will not change is my code. I don't remember when I came up with this, but a few administrations back, after carefully considering what the Bible had to say about my attitudes toward the government, I came up with some principles that would govern how I speak to and about our elected officials (it references the President specifically, but can apply to any kind of leader).

Word of warning: it's easy to follow this code when the President in office is "good" (read, "a President I support"). The challenge is with the President of a different party, or one that makes unpopular decisions, or that gives evidence of doing things that may not be good for the country. But as I study the Bible, I find the principles are not labeled with a D or an R. If Paul can pray for the cruel, pagan tyrant named Nero, do I have a reason not to pray for a President for whom I did not vote?

A couple of quick disclaimers: 1) I am not perfect and at any given time, I have slipped and violated my own code. I don't offer this as judgment, merely as aspiration.  2) We're still friends, whether you agree with me or not.

This will be split between "My Code" and "Guiding Scripture

My Code
1. I will refer to the President as "President Name" or "the President." I will avoid using just the last name unless the context of the reference calls for it.

2. I will avoid the use of pejorative nicknames for the President. While well done political satire and humor has its place in our history, I will continue to disapprove of proverbial "cheap shots."

3. As much as possible, I will give the President the benefit of the doubt.

4. I will not automatically believe every bad report about the President, unless there is clear and compelling evidence to support it. I will not entertain news of failure unless it can be objectively verified.

5. I will celebrate the victories and wins of the President that are for the good of the country (not just for the good of the President's party).

6. I will exercise my right as an American citizen to "speak truth to power," to speak against policies and practices that violate my convictions or that I feel are contrary to the best ideas of this country.

7. But when speaking in disagreement, I will always temper my comments with respect and consideration to the man or woman holding the office.

8. I will pray for the President, for his or her success, health, safety, protection, and that he or she would seek and heed the wisdom of God.

Guiding Scriptures:


1 Peter 2:13-17 Therefore submit yourselves to every ordinance of man for the Lord’s sake, whether to the king as supreme, 14 or to governors, as to those who are sent by him for the punishment of evildoers and for the praise of those who do good. 15 For this is the will of God, that by doing good you may put to silence the ignorance of foolish men— 16 as free, yet not using liberty as a cloak for vice, but as bondservants of God. 17 Honor all people. Love the brotherhood. Fear God. Honor the king.


1 Timothy 2:1-2 Therefore I exhort first of all that supplications, prayers, intercessions, and giving of thanks be made for all men, for kings and all who are in authority, that we may lead a quiet and peaceable life in all godliness and reverence.

Romans 13:1-7 Let every soul be subject to the governing authorities. For there is no authority except from God, and the authorities that exist are appointed by God. Therefore whoever resists the authority resists the ordinance of God, and those who resist will bring judgment on themselves. For rulers are not a terror to good works, but to evil. Do you want to be unafraid of the authority? Do what is good, and you will have praise from the same. For he is God’s minister to you for good. But if you do evil, be afraid; for he does not bear the sword in vain; for he is God’s minister, an avenger to execute wrath on him who practices evil. Therefore you must be subject, not only because of wrath but also for conscience’ sake. For because of this you also pay taxes, for they are God’s ministers attending continually to this very thing. Render therefore to all their due: taxes to whom taxes are due, customs to whom customs, fear to whom fear, honor to whom honor.


Acts 23:1-5 Then Paul, looking earnestly at the council, said, “Men and brethren, I have lived in all good conscience before God until this day.” And the high priest Ananias commanded those who stood by him to strike him on the mouth. Then Paul said to him, “God will strike you, you whitewashed wall! For you sit to judge me according to the law, and do you command me to be struck contrary to the law?”And those who stood by said, “Do you revile God’s high priest?”Then Paul said, “I did not know, brethren, that he was the high priest; for it is written, ‘You shall not speak evil of a ruler of your people.’"


Also see 1 Samuel 24, in which David, presented with an opportunity to kill Saul, refuses to harm the Lord's anointed.


Thanks for reading the "November Musings" series, one of my rare forays into politics. If you have not already done so, make sure you vote and pray. And remember, on Wednesday, November 9, I predict that Jesus will still be King of Kings and Lord of Lords!


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Friday, November 04, 2016

NOVEMBER MUSINGS #4: QUICK THOUGHTS BEFORE NEXT TUESDAY

As I type this, there is only one weekend between me and Election Day. So I want to use this post to share four quick thoughts about what could and should happen on Tuesday and beyond. No major theme here, no in-depth analysis, just shooting through my keyboard. As always, whether you agree or disagree, be nice.

1. No candidate is going to "save" America. There are dozens of reasons why the grand promises of the would-be POTUS fail to materialize, most of them out of the control of the candidate. When Secretary Clinton or Mr. Trump make these sweeping pronouncements about what the next four to eight years will be like under their watch, I just smile.

2. The horrible things we think the opposing candidate will do to America will likely not happen either. Again, there are dozens of reasons for this, but gloom and doom predictions rarely persuade me as to my voting preferences. Nuclear war has never happened, guns have not been confiscated, and, as of this date, I am still free to worship in the church of my choice. Please understand, I am not blind to the issues or concerns that face our country. It's just that, if I had a proverbial nickel for every celebrity that threatened to leave the country if (fill in the name of candidate) won the White House, I'd be able to buy a nice dinner for my wife. Maybe things won't be spectacularly rosy under one administration, but I doubt it will be a total disaster under another.

3. Whoever is elected is my President, whether they got my vote or not.  I've actually had people get mad at me for saying this. "He's not my President," they announce.  Ummm, yes he is. Defiantly proclaiming that the new President is "not my President" or refusing to accept his or her position in the Oval Office is really no different than threatening to leave the country if the opposition is elected. It solves nothing, it changes nothing.

4. I'm a bit of an idealist, so I think this is a good time to remember that we are one nation, under God. If we let this election continue to negatively divide us, we've lost something far greater than our guy or gal being in the White House.  One of the most disturbing elements of this election is the candidates declaring their contempt for the voters that are for the opposition. That's not cool. If, as the experts are predicting, this election is close, then theoretically half of the voting population will be on the "other side." That's when we realize that we are still American citizens and the President has the responsibility to work with all of us, not just the ones that voted for him or her.


In my next (and possibly last) installment of "November Musings," I will share my personal philosophy of how we should treat the President--any President. I've used this "code" for several administrations and it has served me well.

Until next time, remember that on November 9, Jesus is still King of kings and Lord of lords!

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Friday, October 28, 2016

NOVEMBER MUSINGS #3: WRESTLING MEMORIES

Why do I seem to have such a problem with this election? I think it has to do with professional wrestling.

I better explain.

When I was a lad, pro wrestling was a staple of our Saturday afternoons. Wrestlers would travel to a city, put on their show, and then head off to the next one. In our area, the local channel had a show called "Championship Wrestling," which featured these contests. The wrestlers would be interviewed between matches and promote their next battle to be held at the fairgrounds or gymnasium. Championship Wrestling was "must see TV" for our family over the weekends.

I kind of suspected the made-up nature of the contests (could a human body really get pummeled into near unconsciousness, then get up a minute later and fight some more?), but I didn't really care. As a young comic-book geek, these were real life superheroes battling it out. There were the good guys (faces) and bad guys (heels). The faces would be good sportsmen, fighting hard, but following the rules. The heels, naturally, cheated and were arrogant, mean, and nasty.

A typical scenario was during a tag team match. The good guys being pummelled by the bad guy as he desperately reaches out his arm to tag his partner, who was also reaching out. Just inches away from deliverance, but they can't make contact. But then something happens and the face outside the ring unintentionally commits a minor infraction (it has to be minor, because,as a good guy, he follows the rules). The ref rushes over to him, turning his back to the wrestlers in the ring, and begins lecturing the guy about the rules. Meanwhile, the other heel enters the ring and joins his partner in beating the tar out of the good guy. The face outside the ring desperately tries to explain to the ref what's happening, the crowd is yelling and screaming for the ref to stop the carnage, the announcers are shouting into their microphones atop the card table set up at the side, while the ref continues to chew out the good guy outside the ring.

Oh the humanity!

Face vs. face matches were good to watch. Though no less choreographed, they tended to focus more on technique then annihilation. And after the match, the good guys would shake hands with each other. You could feel the mutual respect oozing out of them as they spoke to the interviewer afterward. Face vs. heel matches, on the other hand, usually ended with the good guy offering a handshake to the bad guy, only to have the bad guy respond with a sucker punch or kick in the stomach.

(Tim, what does this have to do with the election?) Stay with me....

As professional wrestling got bigger and more popular, I noticed things changing. In today's matches, I'm just as likely to see the good guys double team a bad guy as the other way around. There's still the arm straining moment of the tag, but if they can't make contact, and if they can get away with it, the face is more than willing to infract a rule or two to help his partner. Faces are just as rude and arrogant as their heel counterparts, and if I had children as young as I was "in the day," I would be embarrassed to hear the language they use in the pre- and post- match interviews.

Yes, there are still faces and heels, good guys and bad guys. But since their is no real distinction in technique or persona, the only way we know who's who is, well...marketing. Since the face cheats, uses foul language, and does not show respect to his opponents, all that's left is to promote him as a face (which the big pro wrestling organizations do quite well). And in the world of professional wrestling, even that can change, with good guys becoming bad guys and vice verse.

Which brings me to my election point: I honestly cannot tell the face from the heel. Yes, I know that issues are important and there is much at stake, so we should ignore the personality of each candidate and focus on what is truly important. After all, if we elect him or her, then untold disaster will befall us, so isn't it worth putting up with less than graceful conduct in order to ensure a victory?

When I was in my teen years, I gleaned a piece of wisdom from (believe it or not) a comic book. I don't remember the title or issue number, but I remember the dialogue. The young sidekick seemed to support a move against the villain that would have helped the cause, but was rather underhanded. He reasoned, "But if it stops the bad guy, isn't it worth it?" The hero replies, "I believe it's important to win. But we still need to be the good guys when we do it."

Marketing and political campaigns do not persuade me. Promises don't sway me. Lofty vows of grand change if elected or ominous warnings if the other person is elected don't carry any weight with me. As long as the candidates do the same stuff in the same way, I have a problem.

I guess what I'm looking for is a face.


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Wednesday, October 19, 2016

NOVEMBER MUSINGS #2: THAT TAPE

In this valiant attempt to bring clarity to the November presidential election, I struggle with a lot of things. I've already shared in a previous post about my overall struggle regarding the real potential to tick everyone off. But the other challenge is that there are so many elements on which to shine a light, which one do I tackle first? Let's go to the tape. . . .

The tape, of course, is the revelation that Donald Trump bragged to (then) entertainment reporter Billy Bush about his ability to "have his way" with women (yes, I'm being diplomatic about something that at best was a rude, crude description and, at worst, an admission of possible assault). The exchange was caught on tape and recently released. Mr. Trump has characterized it as "locker room talk" and apologized. Many GOP lawmakers, evangelical leaders, and a host of others have repudiated the candidate. And, of course, in late breaking news, a few women have said that Mr. Trump's statements were not words only, but actions. To be fair, their accusations have not been substantiated, and Mr. Trump denies them, but they are certainly a cause of concern.

Three trains of thought come to mind:

We can't easily dismiss the claims against Donald Trump
So why did this 11 year old tape take so long to surface and why did these women wait until now to reveal Mr. Trump's treatment of them? First of all, regarding the women, it is not uncommon for a victim to remain silent. Some of it is born out of fear, some of it is embarrassment, some of it is a certain amount of self-doubt (did I somehow encourage this? was it my fault?). I would hope we've come far enough of our understanding sexual assault that we not dismiss these accusers out of hand. And I have to admit (with my limited knowledge), nothing the women have said so far sounds in-credible. It all sounds very consistent with Donald Trump's public personality and, yes, with his "locker room talk."

Which leads us back to the tape. What was on the tape was disgusting. Deplorable. Degrading. We can dismiss it as "locker room talk," but let's face it: the behavior it describes and even the language that is used is unacceptable.  But some of my conservative, Christian friends have said, "it's not that big a deal. Why are we condemning him for something he did  eleven years ago? He has apologized, so we should forgive him and move on."

Yes, I agree whole heartily we should forgive Donald Trump. But "moving on" might be a little more complicated. I can forgive the drug addict who steals my electronics to feed his habit. But I won't leave him unsupervised in my house. I will look for signs of continued drug use. I will love him and encourage him and rejoice in his victories. But unconditional forgiveness is not blindness. Or naivety. Yes, I forgive Donald Trump. But it took him eleven years to "confess" his sin (and only because the tape surfaced) and there have been no indications that he is a different man than before. Maybe he is. But we only have his public personality to evaluate and they suggest (not prove) he may have the same attitudes toward women as he had eleven years ago. Moving on is not so simple.

This could be a set up
But let's take a look at the other side of the coin. Aside from his "locker room" tape, there is no solid evidence to substantiate the claims of Mr. Trump's accusers. And while I prefer to give victims the benefit of the doubt, yes, some women do lie. We cannot blindly reject the idea that this could very well be a set up. NBC has had the "locker room" tape for eleven years, but during the entire run of the hit series The Apprentice, it never saw the proverbial light of day. While there are certainly legitimate reasons why the alleged victims may not have spoken out for eleven years, the fact is, they are only speaking out now, during a critical election season. The timing is more than convenient. Saturday Night Live brilliantly nailed this in a sketch portraying the Clinton campaign celebrating, with Hillary Clinton unable to contain her delight over this damaging revelation.  So there exists at least the possibility that these allegations are unfounded. Until more substantial proof surfaces, the question will remain unanswered.

What all this says about media and society
However, another troubling part of this whole thing  is the sudden focus on morality in our society.  Hey, I'm a stuck-in-the-mud, old fashioned values, Bible-believing Christian, but I get a little distressed when I hear representatives of the liberal left pontificate about the terribleness of Donald Trump's tape. Whenever Christians speak out against sexual situations or obscenity on television or movies, they are widely condemned as prudes, Puritans, or Pollyannas who want to destroy our civilization by imposing their narrow view of what is right or wrong in society. Meanwhile, we are treated to all types of  depictions of immorality, a great deal of which involves the degradation of women. It seems more than a little, I don't know, uhhh--hypocritical?

And then there are the athletes and celebrities who make fun of Donald Trump by saying that he's probably never been in a locker room, because men don't really talk that way in locker rooms. I beg to differ. The expression "locker room talk" existed before Donald Trump's apology and has always meant the kind of crude, bragging conversations that usually center on women. In some cases, it's little more than tall tales, but regardless, some men really do talk that way.  Let's tone down the feigned shock. If every newscaster or celebrity had tapes of their off-camera words and deeds, it would be quite a revelation to a lot of admirers.

And yes, NBC fired Billy Bush for his role in the "locker room" tape, but I noticed it did not prevent them from putting him on the Today Show in the first place. Only when they were stuck between exposing the "terrible immorality" of Donald Trump and showing their own media personality involved in the same thing did they take action. What else could they do?

Suddenly, prominent people who have never regarded the Bible as anything special are pulling out quotes to inform us all what "good Christians" should think about all this. While I'm glad to see anyone reading the Bible for guidance, I fear that many of these folks don't really give a flying care about what the Bible says; rather, their main goal is to maybe point out what they perceive as hypocrisy among Trump supporters. Where is the tolerance? Where is the very Biblical and Christian virtue of forgiveness? And that is an ongoing irritation, not only in this campaign, but in society overall: people who don't believe the Bible trying to convince the faithful about what the Bible says. Just something to think about.

Please do not take my comments as a rejection or endorsement of either candidate. Like many Americans, I'm struggling with this election. These posts represent what one of my teachers called, "thinking through my keyboard." I welcome your comments, but name calling, foul language, or general mean-spiritedness will not be allowed. Good points made logically and consistently (with maybe a dash of humor) goes a long way, even if you disagree.

And remember: no matter what happens in November, Jesus is still King of Kings and Lord of Lords!

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