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So Now What?

Posted by on Nov 10, 2016 in Culture War, Donald Trump, Homepage, Politics, Power, Protest, Questioning Authority, Rebellion | 0 comments

So that happened, and my side lost. (Well technically, my side lost when the DNC conspired against Bernie in order to coronate an establishment moderate hawk, but I digress.) So what now?  On the one hand I could stomp my feet, wring my hands on social media, or join one of the very secessionist movements like #Calexit that I mock when they originate in places like Mississippi. (But then, California is the sixth largest economy in the world while Mississippi’s entire cash reserve can fit in one of the state’s ubiquitous double-wides. And Mississippexit doesn’t exactly roll of the tongue.) Or—and try to stick with me here—I can just accept that democracy doesn’t always go my way. I mean, the Left had their guy in office for eight years (although he was never my guy). How did we respond...

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Sexual Puritans in an R-Rated Culture

Posted by on Dec 2, 2015 in America, Culture, Culture War, Dan Savage, Homepage, Homosexuality, Pop Culture, Power, Sex | 2 comments

As you probably know, Christian and I interviewed Dan Savage on our most recent episode of Drunk Ex-Pastors. For those not familiar, Dan is  a gay-rights activist as well as the nation’s most well-known sex-advice columnist. Going in, we pretty much knew that the episode would make some people uncomfortable. We were right. I won’t spoil it for you, but suffice it to say that our conversation focused on sex in general and homosexuality in particular, and it featured just about everything you can imagine a discussion like that including. And true to form, some of our more conservative and Christian listeners disapproved. In a word, they thought it was distasteful and icky. Here’s the irony: Many corners of the Christian church have leaders who clamor for relevance, for a seat at the cultural table, and for a chance...

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Fake Plastic Selves

Posted by on Jun 16, 2015 in Culture, G.K. Chesterton, God, Homepage, Humanity, Masks, Power, Protest, Questioning Authority, Rebellion, Thomas Merton, Worldviews | 19 comments

One of the most unfortunate phrases in the English language is “He’s only human.” The assumption lurking behind it is that humanity is akin to weakness, like a crutch, and is therefore something to be ashamed of. I touch on this in the book I am currently writing: A proper Christology reminds us that receiving heavenly grace does not force upon us an entirely new operating system or delete everything on our human hard drive, but affirms all the good stuff that we have downloaded previously (even providing the occasional update when necessary).   I am reminded of G.K. Chesterton’s response to those who would seek to dismiss the Church’s liturgical feasts and festivals due to their being of pagan cultic origin: “They might as well say that our legs are of pagan origin. Nobody ever disputed that humanity was...

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Lucifer in 2016!

Posted by on Mar 9, 2015 in America, Culture War, God, Guns, Homepage, Money, Politics, Pop Culture, Power, Questioning Authority, Rapture, Work, Worldviews, Xenophobia | 0 comments

During a recent episode of Drunk Ex-Pastors  I made the point that I would welcome a presidential candidate who made no claims to being religious, since then I might actually have someone I’d consider voting for.  Think about it: If a candidate is an outspoken Christian he will almost certainly: (1) desire to defund as many state programs for the poor as possible; (2) turn away as many destitute people from our borders as he can, children included; (3) need the slimmest of reasons necessary before engaging in military action, action which will probably have some ulterior motive beyond the stated one; (4) fight against raising the minimum wage; (5) seek to deregulate corporations’ freedom to do whatever they want since they’re “people”; (6) deny climate change since it snowed this winter; (7) fight against reasonable gun legislation; and (8)...

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Yes by Might, Yes by Power: Lawsuits and Leadership at Calvary Chapel

Posted by on Oct 2, 2014 in Calvary Chapel, God, Homepage, Power | 9 comments

As we delve into in episode #9 of Drunk Ex-Pastors, the church that we grew up in (Calvary Chapel of Costa Mesa) is embroiled in a bitter lawsuit, brought by two of the now-deceased founding pastor’s children, concerning both leadership and ownership of the church’s vast financial resources. My contention was that in the context of a paradigm where the only way to judge a leader’s authority is by whether or not you agree with him, this kind of in-fighting and lust for power is par for the course. Still, it is disheartening to see church leaders behaving with no more dignity and decorum than secular leaders, and for my part, I can totally see how so many of my friends have lost their respect for the Christian church because of the behavior of its “anointed” leadership. Listen here, the...

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Whatcha Gonna Do When They Come For You?

Posted by on Sep 29, 2014 in Culture War, Homepage, Police, Power | 1 comment

If you’re like me and you’ve seen the news lately highlighting all the senseless shootings of black men by white cops, or if you’ve ever watched a documentary about any anti-establishment movement (whether about the civil rights protests in the ’60s or the protest in Seattle against the World Bank in the ’90s), then you’ve surely asked the question, “Dafuq is the deal with the po-leece? Does that profession just attract petty men who were bullied in junior high and who need a target for their juvenile aggression?” If that’s you, then you need to listen to the latest episode of Drunk Ex-Pastors. Just saying. . ....

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Racism: For Whites Only?

Posted by on Sep 26, 2014 in America, Culture War, Homepage, Power, Protest, Questioning Authority, Racism | 14 comments

In Drunk Ex-Pastors podcast #8, one of the topics we discuss is racism. Jason brings up a quote from the first season of MTV’s The Real World  where Kevin Powell (a black cast member) is accused of racism and in response says, “Black people cannot be racist. We don’t have the power to control. . . .” At first hearing, I dismissed Kevin’s statement as ignorant. After all, racism, to me (a white male), means considering someone to be inferior in some way simply because of their race. While this is a  valid definition of racism, it’s not the only  definition of racism and not even the main  definition. A quick search through the various definitions of racism will show that racism also  has to do with the exercise of power. The first definition for “racism” on is...

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Are Men Just Puppets?

Posted by on Sep 23, 2014 in Homepage, Power, Women | 1 comment

An interesting issue came up during episode #8 of Drunk Ex-Pastors. A female caller relayed her frustration over the fact that when she was a churchgoer, many of the other women in the congregation viewed her with suspicion because of their fear that she would try to tempt and steal away their husbands. Of course, the first question that arose in my mind was, “So what’s the deal? Are men simply passive agents in this whole thing? Are they just acted upon, the way a wallet is acted upon when picked up from the table and placed in one’s pocket?” In fact, this whole attitude sort of feeds the idea that men aren’t really responsible for what they do. They’re simply duped, picked off, hypnotized, and forced into doing what their urges naturally demand. For a fuller discussion, listen here!...

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Podcast #8: The One Where We Use the N-Word

Posted by on Sep 22, 2014 in Alcohol, Food, Homepage, Homosexuality, Humor, Justin Bieber, Movies, Podcasts, Politics, Pop Culture, Power, Racism, Sex, Women | 5 comments

In this episode of Drunk Ex-Pastors, Christian gives me a very special gift (hint: it’s small, sings like a little Canadian boy, and you put it in your mouth); we take feedback from a female listener who is frustrated by her former time in the church when all her “sisters in Christ” thought she wanted to steal their husbands; we delve into the issue of language and labels, focusing on whether and when it’s OK to use “the N-word” as well as whether jokingly labeling stuff “gay” or “retarded” is a retarded, gay thing to do; I bitch about my culinary needs never being met, while we hoist a poignant shot which Christian saved for the very end of the show. Listen to Podcast #8: The One Where We Use the...

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Women: Walking Vaginas? Or Something More?

Posted by on Sep 18, 2014 in Culture War, Homepage, Power, Sex, Women | 5 comments

Many of you with a religious background will know that Genesis records the creation of Eve from Adam’s rib because Adam needed a “helpmeet” or counterpart with whom he could relate (up to that point there were just animals roaming around). It is very easy for religious people to jump from the Genesis record to the idea that women only exist to make men’s lives easier, and have no distinct purpose of their own outside pleasing their husbands and bearing his children (a position that, as we discussed in episode #7 of Drunk Ex-Pastors, Mark Driscoll appears to hold). Have any thoughts on this? If you’re a female, got any horror stories to share? Have a listen...

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