Religion and Spirituality

Depending on What you Mean by Love

Depending on What you Mean by Love

There’s a great line in Madama Butterfly, after Pinkerton is asked if he actually loves his newly purchased (literally, for 100 yen) Japanese wife, and he replies “Well, it depends on what you mean by love.”   Of course, the point is to continue to illustrate what a truly terrible person Pinkerton is, but it’s actually a point to keep in mind.  What it means to love can var... »

The Ethics of Doing Business with the Religious

The Ethics of Doing Business with the Religious

It’s easy to point at the people who refuse to make wedding cakes for gay couples and discuss their lack of professional ethics.  Things just became less easy for me because, in my capacity as a professional dancer, I have just been hired to perform for a religious organization that is officially racially segregated (I’m dancing for the African-American sect, rather than the white sect... »

If Proselytizing Speech Were Held to the Standards of Advertising Speech

If Proselytizing Speech Were Held to the Standards of Advertising Speech

I collect religious tracts, but with rules.  They must be given to me by someone in a way that implies that giver thinks something is really wrong with me.  Preferably with as much condescension as possible.   “Here, I think you need this” is good.  Left taped to my door anonymously is also acceptable.  Recently, one of my relatives seems to have realized I am no longer a sweet Christi... »

A Mandatory Love for Babies

A Mandatory Love for Babies

Olivia’s musings on the social unacceptability of not desiring children has inspired me to write about much the same thing. I used to be a fundamentalist (lite) Christian.  I was bad at it.  Mostly, I was really bad at feeling the emotions I was supposed to feel.  I tried really hard and mostly just felt a continuous terror that by not feeling what I was told to feel I was going to Hell.  Th... »

International Aid to Uganda in Light of Human Rights Violations

International Aid to Uganda in Light of Human Rights Violations

An earlier version of this article was published at In Tanzania.  With Coffee.  In response to recent virulently anti-gay laws passed in Uganda, a lot of nations are cutting off aid to Uganda, or considering doing so.  I don’t think this is a particularly good response.  More to the point, LGBTI organizations in Uganda say this, and they are far more expert than me on the subject. I realize ... »

Hope for the Aftermath of the Creation “Museum” Fundraiser Debate

Hope for the Aftermath of the Creation “Museum” Fundraiser Debate

Like many others, I am not thrilled about tonight’s Ham vs Nye debate. Others have expressed reasons far better than I can, the most cogent, in my opinion, being that no matter what happens, Ken Ham has won by being able to pocket all the money to support his “museum” and any other Answers in Genesis projects to obfuscate and lie in the name of godly education. This is a bad thin... »

The implications of Santa’s race

The implications of Santa’s race

In a shining moment of generosity that many of you have probably heard of by now, unless you avoid Fox News and all mention of it like the plague-filled hovel that it is (and you’re probably better off for the effort), Megyn Kelly has declared Santa Claus to be all hers. No, not in an “I saw mommy kissing Santa Claus” way, unless it’s where mommy is a hate-filled asshat as ... »

What Is a Good Person?

What Is a Good Person?

I have a confession: I love watching crappy TLC shows. I have no shame about it. Say Yes to the Dress, Sister Wives. I am all about it. Lately I’ve been binge-watching 19 Kids and Counting, a show about an extremely religious family that subscribes to things like purity culture, homeschooling, and missionary work around the world. And while I find this as entertaining as the rest, there are a few ... »

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