A lot of folks who read my blog might raise their eyebrows by the information links that i have listed in the side panel. There is a stereotype of the American Christian that asserts that we all: vote Republican, resist knowledge, prefer ignorance, practice intolerance, and are in collusion with certain political or ideological groups. Sadly, there are plenty of Christians who either accept and believe that these things are part of their responsibility, or are duped into following along with the rest of the herd. Stereotypes wouldn't exist if some individuals didn't follow them.
Once again, the time has come for me to test the waters and see how many other folks i can alienate. Or maybe i'm overdoing the whole "alienation" thing. At any rate, let me clear a few things up.
I don't necessarily believe, condone, or follow everything that the sidebar links promote. Essentially, these are merely helpful locations in the larger context of the internet that i've found provide data and information that the larger, corporate-owned-and-promoted media organizations either downplay or ignore altogether. Since 2000, i've become increasingly interested in this "underside" of the news, and why we aren't being told about it. Yes, it's likely that some of the information you'll find on these links borders on "paranoia," and that some of it is disinformation, but that's no less true in the corporate-owned media; what most folks would accept as "normal" news is no less susceptible to disinformation, confusion, and out-and-out falsehood than the sources i've listed.
One thing that Evil likes to do is create divisions within the human race, and then promote enmity and hostility between those divisions. To a great degree, this is easily done between the elite and/or super-wealthy, and the common lot of us; in many ways, there are those who consider themselves "elite," who think that because of their greater wealth/power they should make decisions for the rest of the human race. Those of us who do not belong to their "class" are expected to simply accept their pronouncements and plod along with the rest of the herd, bemused by all those televised images and glossy magazine photos. Those of us who "cut against the grain" are vilified, regardless of our intentions or beliefs. We're often labelled "paranoid," "conspiracy nuts," "out of touch with reality, " "losers," "freaks," and words even i won't repeat. When you challenge the dominant paradigm, you're going to generate hostility, even if that's not your intent. Why else would pacifists be murdered? Year after year, liars are elected to government posts, and they face no greater threat than any of their comrades . . . but utter a few hard-hitting words of truth, and laser gun-sights will multiply on you like measles! I've encountered resistance and hostility on double-fronts before. As a performance "slam" poet, i've been questioned and even actively opposed because i'm a Christian, and to a degree that someone who claimed to be a Buddhist, a Wiccan, or a Pagan would never experience. Yet, because i move in those circles, and because i don't pass judgement on my fellow poets, or the other folks i associate with (such as the "Park Rats" of Union Square), a lot of my fellow Christians regard me with suspicion (bad) or a sort of condescending indulgence as if i were a wayward child (worse). I hate to beat a dead horse (i've expressed this frustration in prose and poetry for years), but i'm really getting tired of it on both ends. Even among members of my own family, i'm regarded as "paranoid" or "too extreme." I began to wonder WHY it was that Christians aren't supposed to have a critical intelligence, or a healthy skepticism regarding ANYTHING having to do with the World. I hate to break everyone's bubble, but there ARE NO POLITICAL ANSWERS TO THE HUMAN CONDITION. You might as well get it through your head. The more power you put in the hands of the Government, the less the Government is going to be "public servants." That term is almost a joke as it is. And don't hand me that old Democrat-vs.-Republican bullshit, because that's just a game they play to keep us amused. Don't you see that every time somebody gets elected to office, they: break promises they made during their campaigns, begin living high off the hog from our taxpayer dollars, and cite "executive privilege," "state secrets," or just a general "no comment" when they're confronted. Wealth and power create all sorts of walls, mazes, and distractions that keep the people who're being governed from getting too close. Any government that cannot accept the scrutiny or criticism of the people being governed cannot call itself a Democracy. What we have in this country--indeed, in most of the world--is plutocracy/aristocracy. Rule by the wealthy and elite. Those who have the most money and biggest financial backers generally win elections. This is the way of the World, and any right-thinking Christian realizes that there's only death and destruction down that road.
Evil seeks to divide us and subdivide us, especially within the Church. If the body of Christ is divided, how can we hope to effectively function as moral or ethical examples? And, to my fellow "freaks," if you resist oppression and hatred, why is it so difficult to understand that we have a common Enemy? The fact that God's name has been misused as an excuse to perpetuate evil does NOT mean that all those who are Christians condone or promote those evils . . . quite the opposite! Not all of us are puppets for the Right Wing. Some of us deny ALL political classification. I wouldn't be writing like this if i accepted the "dominant paradigm" of what i call "politichristianity:" religiousity used as a cover for political motivations, or as a tool to assure that certain portions of the population will accept what they'd normally reject. I'll be point-blank: THIS IS BLASPHEMY. Every year, Uncle Sam picks our pockets, uses the money to by guns, bombs, limos, prostitutes, and blow, and has the audacity to complain about the "heathen nations" and their "godless ways," but "God bless America" and "in God we trust" are Uncle Sam's magic incantations, a way of making all the crimes seem simultaneously righteous and patriotic. (Oh, and by the way, nowhere in the Bible is being "unpatriotic" listed as a sin).
We are rapidly coming into an era where the free exchange of information and ideas has a new horizon in the Internet (a fact that the elite are quite aware of--watch for more attempts to limit and/or privatize this new horizon). People have been shaken and shocked, first by 9/11, and then by the nigh-collapse of the economy. Reality has a way of doing that . . . and yet, rulers, leaders, and "captains of industry" have done everything in their power to re-create that "magic curtain," to keep us entertained, amazed, and amused, to feed us tiny bits of information that are a placebo to real knowledge, and of course, to make sure that the divisions of race, religion, age, sex, and political orientation stay firmly in place, and promote the stereotypes that reassure that (watch FOX; they're really good at promoting stereotypes).
There's one point i want to end with: anything that is not of God will ultimately fail; anything that IS of God will ultimately prevail. The "dominant paradigm" is all wrong, all deception.
Let me end this with an appropriate passage from the book of Habbakuk, from the Message translation. It makes the point better than i ever could.
"Note well: Money deceives.
The arrogant rich don't last.
They are more hungry for wealth
than the grave is for cadavers.
Like death, they always want more,
but the "more" they get is dead bodies.
They are cemeteries filled with dead nations,
graveyards filled with corpses.
Don't give people like this a second thought.
Soon the whole world will be taunting them:
"Who do you think you are--
getting rich by stealing and extortion?
How long do you think
you can get away with this?
Indeed, how long before your victims wake up,
stand up and make you the victim?
You've plundered nation after nation.
Now you'll get a taste of your own medicine.
All the survivors are out to plunder you,
a payback for all your murders and massacres.
Who do you think you are--
recklessly grabbing and looting,
Living it up, acting like king of the mountain,
acting above it all, above trials and troubles?
You've engineered the ruin of your own house.
In ruining others, you've ruined yourself.
You've undermined your foundations,
rotted out your own soul.
The bricks of your house will speak up and accuse you.
The woodwork sill step forward with evidence." -- Habbakuk 2:5-11
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