Saturday, January 21, 2017

The Changes to Majority America

Times are a'changin'.

Give it 12 years. Maybe 16. But it will change. The demographics don't lie.

In 12 years, the conservative older voting bloc will be diminished and the younger, more liberal crowd will be emerging.

America tomorrow is more educated, more tolerant, more open, religiously diverse, more brown, and will have more females in positions of power. The favored religion of today will be on equal footing with other faiths, and conservative Christianity will not like it when other religions begin using their tenets to discriminate. That Christian baker in Oregon who refused to bake a cake for a gay couple, will become the Muslim baker who refused service to the Christian couple because the woman wouldn't cover her hair for modesty sake ... and there are no other bakeries that would serve that Christian couple.

Those state tax schemes that allowed Christians to designate their tax bill to private Christian schools will be hated when the growing Muslim population do the same thing and Muslim schools start popping up in every community.

Yes, America will change. That means we will have the opportunity to right the ship in a few years, if we survive that long.

If we survive the economic, cultural, and worldwide upheaval of the disaster upon us as of January 2016.

Inauguration Day and A Lot of Mourning

I am generally an optimistic person. But not today. Not with what I believe is the biggest disaster this nation ever voluntarily put on itself. And, sadly in this case, it is not just what happens to the US but what will happen to the rest of the world, and even the future of the planet.

Donald Trump is a national calamity.

Don't give me that "well, he is the president and we have to support him," or the "we have to give him a chance," or even worse the "we lived through Obama and look at how bad he was." Bull. In every language --- bull excrement.

This is not just any Republican but a fascist. His speeches, his rallies, the content of everything he said is so eerily similar to that of Adolf Hitler that I am shocked no one is calling him on it. Wait. They are pointing it out in the media but those stories are discounted as fake news or liberal wrangling that should be ignored because, hey, the media is won't tell the truth and only Trump has the truth. After all, it doesn't matter what the facts are because if you feel something is true, it must be. The media is filled with elitists, i.e., educated, who are trying to keep the common people down. It's not the wealthy who will benefit from these policies --- nooooo, the poor and middle class will prosper again when the tax burden falls on them and off the wealthy.

Trump played on people's fear, racism, bigotry, lack of education, desperation, xenophobia, ethnocentrism, and called it all patriotism. After all, you can't be a patriot and love America is you don't agree with Trump and you certainly don't want America to be great again like the liberal elites who are working against the common man. He played it well. It worked. And now we have to pay for it all.

Don't misunderstand me here. I don't want Trump to fail because I don't want America to fail. I no more want Trump to fail than I want something awful to happen to my own kids. No. It's not that I want Trump to fail but that I know Trump will fail.

I grief. I am still in mourning over the election. That is exactly how I still feel: in mourning. That deep sense of loss. It's real. Because I know the policies of Trump will be horrendous.

Women will lose a lot of specific health care needs with Planned Parenthood vilified with manufactured controversy that is completely false.

Health care costs will go up more than needed.

Lawsuit limits of malpractice will be implemented, something that will decimate the ability to care someone with a lifetime injury.

Insurance for those outside of employer coverage will see premiums go up exponentially, if it is evern offered.

Lifetime coverage limits will come back, meaning the most sick and vulnerable will not be able to receive the care needed.

The Obama Care taxes and required coverage mandate will go away, making it impossible to provide premium assistance to cover the risk pool that will be older, sicker, and in most need of services.

The environment will become the litter box of the nation.

Our national parks and public lands will become the free resource of large corporations, who will rape the treasures and return them to us forever damaged.

The economic policies simply don't work, e.g., Kansas under Brownback and Louisiana under Jindal. The tax cuts will not spur the sort of magic growth promised. That is not how economics works but it sounds good to people who have not taken econ. Of course, the ideologues insist Nirvana is just arund the corner in KS.

Building a wall --- not gonna happen.

Education is about to take the first step in being privatized.

Manufacturing jobs will not come back to the US and protectionism doesn't work. There is a structural shift in the global marketplace and that genie can't be put back in the bottle.

Russia is celebrating because they did it. Their plan worked. Now the US will focus on internal problems of Trumps on making and his international alliance re-structure and trade arrangements will leave an easy opening for Russia to do whatever she wants.

I could go on but it is irrelevant. All I can do is speak out, though my representatives from GA will discount my emails, phone calls, letters, and opinion.

God help us all.

Sunday, January 1, 2017

Theologies of Change: Wittenberg Door 2.0

I have a question. Several questions. Actually, I'm not entirely sure what the exact question is but I do know the direction of what I'm seeing.

First, I submit this link that says maybe our traditional idea of God's Sovereignty is outdated, if not flat out wrong. In particular, perhaps God is not in control of everything that happens.

God is Not in Control

Second, here is an article about Bart Campolo (son of THAT Campolo) who now no longer identifies as Christian.

Bart Campolo No Longer Believes

Here's what I'm thinking: Is it possible that we have been wrong on God's Sovereignty in the same way we were wrong on so many other issues? In situations such as slavery, evolution, the earth revolving around the sun / being round, or countless other things, we damaged ourselves greatly in reaching people because they viewed our ideas as backward and uneducated. Is that a necessary roadblock to keep throwing out there? If we adopt a theology that says God is not always in control of everything but is completely Sovereign in Love, does that damage the definition of God? Or take Campolo, for example: he had trouble believing in the idea of hell and eternal damnation, so he adopted a Universalism of sorts a long time ago.   The idea of an eternal hell, created by a loving God, for the eternal punishment of people who didn't believe, is all sorts of problematic for everyone's senses. Is that another area where we need to re-examine what exactly it is we believe?

The point here is that in this era where we have (hopefully) a better sense of thinking through all this stuff, oftentimes our theology creates more moral problems than it resolves. I can certainly see many inconsistencies in our theology that unbelievers are pointing out as reasons to reject the faith outright ... and many of those inconsistencies are not ethically defensible on our part. Many positions can be resolved by simply changing our interpretation of some texts, and that would make us be more consistent morally/ethically in our presentation. Perhaps it is that inconsistency that people are seeing, what Bart Campolo recognized, and that is =a= reason (not just =the= reason) some reject the Message.

I'm not in any way saying we should change our theology to fit the "world." I'm not suggesting we soften our positions. I'm saying that perhaps we need another nail on the church door at Wittenberg. The post-modernity doesn't reach everywhere at the same time but it is coming whether we like it or not. Maybe it's time we address legitimate questions about our theology. Are we being resolved in our commitment to truth, or are we being bull-headedly stubborn in refusing to recognize our own inconsistencies?