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People who say it cannot be done should not interrupt those who are doing it. Welcome to From On High.

Tuesday, November 01, 2005

Mistake On The Lake

Work brings me to Cleveland, OH this evening. I've got an all-day meeting here tomorrow and then it's off on another adventure.

Those of you who have been around a while will remember back in the 70's how Cleveland had a horrible - and well-deserved - reputation and was known as "the mistake on the lake." It's also famous for having a river (the Cayahoga) run through the city that was - back then - so polluted that it (the river) caught fire.

But that was a long time ago. The city has been transformed, and has been for many years, one of my favorites. I'm going to take some people down to The Flats by the lake (Erie) later this evening for dinner and whatever trouble we can get into.

Wish you all were here. You could buy the first round.

There's Hope For Them Yet

The United Methodist Church has decided that its pastors have an obligation to be morally straight. Who'da thunk it?
United Methodist ruling defrocks lesbian
By Julia Duin, The Washington Times

The nation's highest United Methodist court voted yesterday to defrock a lesbian pastor, saying the church's commitment to equality does not extend to allowing active homosexuals to serve as clergy.

The church's Judicial Council, which heard the case involving the Rev. Irene "Beth" Stroud on Friday in Houston and announced its decision yesterday, is the final ruling on a matter that began in March 2003, when Miss Stroud informed her bishop that she is a practicing lesbian. (
link)
Of course, they couldn't leave us with the impression that there is a clearly defined line between right and wrong over which we are never to cross. There is this big gray area in between into which we can wander.
"No provision of the [Methodist Book of] Discipline bars a person with a same-sex orientation from the ordained ministry of the United Methodist Church," the Judicial Council said.

"Rather, Paragraph 304.3 is directed towards those persons who practice that same-sex orientation by engaging in prohibited sexual activity," the council wrote, referring to a section of church law that states "the practice of homosexuality is incompatible with Christian teaching."
Now, I've had my share of Christian teaching. And nowhere in that education was I taught that it is acceptable to be a lesbian as long as you as a purported female don't kiss, fondle, or perform lewd acts on another female, willing or otherwise.

What on earth are these idiots thinking? What is their message here? Homosexuality is good but homosexual acts are bad? What in God's name is that?

Come on, United Methodists. You are allowed - no, you have an obligation, unless you decide now to fold up your tents and go home - to teach the flock - especially the young and impressionable - RIGHT from WRONG. GOOD from BAD. RIGHTEOUS from EVIL. The message you send here is that you are wienies trying not to offend either the three lesbians or the several normal parishioners remaining in your rapidly dwindling congregation.

If I may, I'd like to make a suggestion. Go home. Come back and talk to us when you decide why it is you have a church at all.

How To Pick a Winner

I didn't know Harriet Miers. Not like the entire western world seemed to know all about her. And I won't pretend that I know anything about Samuel Alito, President Bush's latest punching bag ... uh, nominee to the Supreme Court. But one thing he has going for him - the New York Times hates him. In an editorial entitled, "Another Lost Opportunity," the Times begins with a we-don't-really-believe-what-we-are-writing-here-but-it-makes-us-look-fair line:
Judge Alito is clearly a smart and experienced jurist, with 15 years on the United States Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit. The nominee should be given a serious hearing.
I can hear the axe being sharpened in the background. Then we get down to it. Judge Alito is the spawn of Satan:
The concerns about this particular nominee go beyond his apparent hostility to abortion, which was most graphically demonstrated in 1992 when his court ruled on what became known in the Supreme Court as the Casey decision.

Judge Alito has favored an inflated standard of evidence for racial- and sex-discrimination cases that would make it very hard even to bring them to court, much less win.

At least as worrisome are Judge Alito's frequent rulings to undermine the federal government's authority to address momentous national problems.
Well. This Judge Alito is anti-abortion, anti-black, anti-woman, and anti-American. Maybe we should skip the hearings and just take him out back and shoot him.

Oh, and he was approved as a federal judge by the United States Senate by a 100 to 0 vote not once but TWICE and has been on the federal appeals bench for fifteen years. At times I favor taking all our Senators out back - especially one of mine - and giving them a good spanking, but 100 to 0? Can they all be stark raving mad? Or are they all anti-abortion, anti-black, anti-woman, and anti-American?

Methinks the folks at the New York Times may be pressing a bit too hard too early. Par for the course.

Quote of the Day

With the nomination of Samuel Alito, the nation's long-term needs and the president's immediate needs converge.

This is a debate the president, who needs a victory, should relish. Will it, as Democrats mournfully say, "divide" the country? Yes. Debates about serious subjects do that. The real reason those Democrats are mournful is that they correctly suspect they are on the losing side of the divide. (link) George Will, The New York Post, November 1, 2005