Jane O'Halloran 
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Re: “Reader: Where does the Springs fall on the tolerance spectrum?

And Mike once again proves his reading comprehension is basically nonexistent. The extreme RIGHT are the ones who want to "eliminate" the sinners, the "immoral", the "liberal", the non-Christian, the gay.... anyone not like them. That's why the white nationalists are lock-step with the Republicans right now. This is a classic case of projection. I recall an Oath Keeper recently quoted as hoping that Trump's election meant that "open season" would soon be declared so they could shoot liberals on the spot. I don't recall hearing anything similar even from the extreme left during Obama's presidency.... just a lot of jumpy right-wingers wringing their hands thinking it'd happen, preparing to be rounded up and put in FEMA camps... and it never did happen.

I don't watch CNN. I don't even have cable. I don't have moral authority (sorry, but that's what the Right always claims to have, considering they're in bed with the Evangelicals, and that's something you're claiming yourself). I have ethics and logic. I came to my belief system on my own, and because you're arguing against the strawman version of me that you have set up in your head, instead of actually reading and comprehending what I'm saying, you'll never be able to come up with a coherent argument against anything I say, honestly. That's not intolerance, that's a fact. You're making stuff up that you THINK I represent (or taking what some talking head told you a "liberal" is), instead of paying attention to what I say, and you're arguing with that imaginary stuff, because it's easier and you have pre-canned responses to it. That's not using common sense, that's being disingenuous. And that's why tolerance is dead with some people - they do that too. No listening, all talking at strawmen. You cannot find common ground with people until you learn how to LISTEN.

Anyway, I'm fast losing interest in talking AT someone who make up arguments with strawmen and then tries to declare victory because they can counter their strawman's imaginary points. Peace.

4 likes, 1 dislike
Posted by Jane O'Halloran on 08/31/2017 at 10:45 AM

Re: “Reader: How far does America need to fall?

Tommy, you are "whataboutism" personified.

Even if you were 100% right in your accusations about Hillary and Obama (you're not.) none of that would justify the travesty that is the current administration.

Neither Hillary nor Obama are president now. They can't do anything about this administration and have no influence on it (except indirectly and from the past, as the people in office now are trying to undo everything Obama ever did, regardless of what impact it had, out of sheer, petty spite for the man). Trump is, unfortunately, president. Own that, stop deflecting, FOCUS.

2 likes, 1 dislike
Posted by Jane O'Halloran on 08/30/2017 at 10:54 PM

Re: “Reader: Where does the Springs fall on the tolerance spectrum?

Mike, I'm sure that thinking people will be skeptical of anyone who, upon seeing the chance to respond to this sort of situation, immediately says "IT'S ALL THEIR FAULT! THEIRS! THEY ARE THE WHOLE PROBLEM! MY SIDE HAD NOTHING WHATSOEVER TO DO WITH THIS! THEY ARE CAUSING ALL, 100% OF THE DIVISIONS BETWEEN US AND THEY ARE THE ONES WHO NEED TO DO ALL THE CHANGING!"

It takes two to tango, bro. Or be dysfunctional, in this case. And I'm hoping you can see the irony in your statement highlighting that very point. One side cannot be completely at fault and anyone who says that's the case, such as yourself, is only contributing to the schism a la Rush Limbaugh and certifiable nutcases like Alex Jones, both of whom paint themselves as experts rather than being strictly for entertainment. (If you're aware of any left-wing examples, feel free to throw them in. I just don't happen to have any similar raving leftist personalities coming to mind at the moment. Blaming "the mainstream media" as a whole, though, smacks of conspiracy theory and doesn't really help your case, nor does blaming television and phones.)

2 likes, 1 dislike
Posted by Jane O'Halloran on 08/30/2017 at 10:27 PM

Re: “Reader: Where does the Springs fall on the tolerance spectrum?

Tolerance is all well and good, but when facing an opponent with intolerant views - views that say someone is *not properly human* because of their race, or gender, or orientation, or political affiliation, or they don't have money, and thus are morally inferior and therefore need to be subjugated and reprogrammed... or eliminated - we're not required to tolerate that. There's a big difference between disagreeing with your neighbor over whether god exists, and thinking your neighbor probably needs to be shot or deported or detained in jail because they're worshipping the "wrong" god... or they're part of the wrong political party, or they don't speak English at home with their family, or they're having sex with the wrong gender person, or they wouldn't mind their tax money going to a single-payer form of health care.

Basically, tolerance only truly works when all sides involved can be trusted to fall within the guidelines of "disagree all you want but at the end of the day we're all human and all equals" and just disagreeing on how best to care for society and who to prioritize for that care. The fact is, many of us are fighting people who think we're NOT equals and have no intention of treating us as such, will not rest until society resembles their own ideals, and thus whenever they get power, they abuse it. And that abuse is already happening right before our eyes.

It is not an imposition to INSIST that people be tolerant within those boundaries, and label people who want to go outside of them as intolerant, and not accept their behavior. That's about the size of it.

The city is, naturally, a mix of viewpoints. I'd personally say it's somewhere in the middle. Conservatism is not necessarily the same as intolerance (though I do know quite a few people who'd disagree with me there, but even the left has been guilty of intolerance itself at times.) But we certainly have our vocal intolerants.

1 like, 1 dislike
Posted by Jane O'Halloran on 08/30/2017 at 5:17 PM

Re: “Reader: Free speech is for everyone except Christians

"Tom, keep on speaking out. I don't necessary always agree, but the way these leftists talk they have an agenda and in the long run they will discriminate against anyone who does not uphold their Progressive ideals and faith."
Our agenda is getting you to leave us alone. You don't get to push your religious doctrines on us and treat us as subhuman just because your dogma says we're all sinners (but you're saved).

"Progressivism is the threat of the day."
Spoken like a true fearmonger. Life involves change, pal - there is no choice but to progress. That which does not adapt WILL DIE eventually. You don't have to embrace change but don't expect us to be sympathetic when you whine about it.

"They don't want us to push our faith on them but they have no problem pushing it on us...and their friends and allies approve."
None of us are saying you can't worship your god or pray or follow his commandments for yourselves. We're not asking you to change what you believe for yourselves (if you don't like gay marriage, fine, don't marry someone the same sex as you - nobody's going to force you. If you don't like abortions, don't ever have one. Don't like punk hair colors? Don't dye your hair). We just don't want to be forced to conform to your beliefs in a legal setting when we don't share them. The First Amendment even prohibits this. What's the problem? Trying to legislate your beliefs onto others is like saying "I'm on a diet, so you can't have that chocolate cake." No. It's your diet, not mine.

"We have to bake LGBT wedding cakes and support and bless their LGBT weddings."
1) nobody's forcing any church to perform gay weddings. There are some Christian denominations that welcome gays, and I'm pretty sure most gay people who want to get married will be happy to go where they're actually welcomed.
2) Selling someone a cake does not mean you condone their marriage any more than selling guns means you condoned a murder and armed robbery by the person you sold a gun to. If you can't bring yourself to do your job fairly and equally, then keep YOUR religious limitations in mind, and find a different job. Don't expect the world to conform to YOU because you believe your religion forbids you something. Where in the bible does it say "thou shalt not bake cakes for gays or do them any kind of service", anyway? Is it by the passage that says you can't wear mixed fiber clothing, or the one that says you can't eat pork or rabbit or shrimp?
3) you might have to legally acknowledge a gay couple, but that doesn't mean you must approve of the relationship. It means you accept it - however grudgingly - like property taxes and car insurance. I don't approve of some of my straight friends' relationships but I understand that what they do is NOT MY BUSINESS and not my choice.
4) the whole "waaaah we have to bake cakes for gay people" thing sounds SO much like the places in the 1950s that didn't want to serve "colored" people, it's just crazy. I guess you missed a lot of the deeper meaning in the parable of the good Samaritan. Here's a hint: Samaritans and Jews HATED each other, it was a deep loathing that probably rivaled that between Palestinians and Israelis today. But Jesus advised treating those you hate with respect and care, and to go the extra mile for them. He even SAID to do that. That which you do for the least of them, you do for him. Love your enemy. Turn the other cheek. If he asks you to go with him one mile, go two. He wasn't asking for proof of income and need when he fed the 5,000 - everyone got some, didn't they? (wow, Jesus sounds a lot like some communist hippie...) But, American Evangelical Christians fail MISERABLY at this all the time. They're the ones asking if the little children REALLY DESERVE the cup of cold water, or of the poor really deserve to be given anything at all. No doubt they'd want a confession of faith from the Samaritan and to make sure he's not gay, before they take him back to the hotel and bandage him. It's cruel and sick, a pathologically psychopathic twist of Jesus' best teachings on kindness.

"Also we have to pay for abortions for women what act like harlots, and affirm their decition to abort cause after all they are women and them some. Never mind that half or more than half of the pre born babies that are snuffed are GIRLS!!! But the woman's loose libido is far more important...just look at Cosmo and you will see what I mean. They may not like seeing nude men but they love to talk dirty. Unlike the guys who do love to look at the T&A...or not if you go with Maxim."
Ahh this old red herring. Completely ignoring, once again, the actual statistics of who gets abortions.... that over 60% who get an abortion are in a committed relationship (40% are outright married), that 3/4 of them already have children (and 50% have more than one), that around two thirds of them WERE USING birth control when they got pregnant because no form of birth control including tubal ligation is 100% effective. Almost nobody aborts because they don't want a girl here, either. That's a very east-Asian thing, and it's culturally related to how girls are seen as lesser value than boys.
Hey, how's Colorado's birth control program doing for ya? It reduced the abortion rate in this state by a whopping 42%! I think someone estimated that it was a $6 savings in maternity and food stamp costs for every single dollar spent on the birth control program! Don't try to tell me that's not a victory! (at least if you're just anti-abortion. But if your goal is just to force people not to have sex so they can abide by your religious morality regardless of whether they're believers.....)
I love how you brought up "women's" loose libido, too. What about men? Don't men have some kind of responsibility for their own chastity, or are we really meant to be our brother's keeper? Even in the Bible, men have been blaming women since Adam. God asks what happened, and Adam tries to combo-blame both God and Eve by saying "the woman YOU gave me, told me to eat this" as if he didn't have a choice! Tale as old as time, blame the woman for everything and ignore your own choices... leave her with as many consequences as you can, never take any personal responsibility for your own bad decisions.
Also, God has never said he was against abortion. Sure, "don't murder", blah blah blah, but the problem is, the bible actually explicitly says that a human life begins at the first breath. Unborn fetuses are treated like PROPERTY in the Bible, not like people. The punishment in Leviticus for causing miscarriage by striking a pregnant woman, is not the death of the offender like it is for murder - it's a FEE. When a woman is put to test for infidelity in the Bible, the "bitter waters" cause a miscarriage - an ABORTION! God also killed plenty of babies in utero, what with all the pregnant women being ripped open... so I don't think he really cares that much about fetuses.
Oh yeah, and then there's the fact that *your religious book* is what's telling you it's immoral to have sex outside marriage/for pleasure. Guess what, other people aren't bound by your religious teachings! Get it through your head... stop pushing your religion on others and forcing them to conform to your religious morals! Two adults having sex is between those two people. They shouldn't have to have the approval of a church if they haven't chosen to partake in that religion.

"They expect us to shut up and they get to act like animals. This is why we need to enact common sense into our culture and government and yes a lot of that does come from God's Law."
Shutting up is necessary in order to LISTEN. So if you're not interested in listening I guess it makes sense that you're offended by the idea of being quiet for a bit.
Last I checked, we still have non-religious laws against murder, theft and such, and people who do stuff like that can still be arrested. No need to be so dramatic. If I were an animal I probably wouldn't be wasting my time typing this.
Have you ever heard of the Code of Hammurabi? One of the first written law books in the world. Predates the written Bible, including the Pentateuch, by quite a bit (it may have been written around the time of Abraham, or before; if Moses wrote the Pentateuch, as is claimed, then Genesis through Deuteronomy came significantly after). The Code has those same basic principles about murder and theft being crimes, so that makes it a pre-Judaic code of law, which means that basic ethics definitely didn't start with recorded Christianity OR Judaism. Interestingly, murder and theft and such seem to be frowned on in most cultures, including those that never had any contact with Judeo-Christian peoples. It's a fairly universal thing for humans - even the ones who are "too primitive" to wear clothing - to agree that killing each other is bad.
Your "common sense" honestly seems pretty crazy to me. You're claiming a lot of things that you just have no evidence for and including a lot of talking points that either don't make sense, aren't Biblical (but are somehow frequently brought up in Evangelical circles), or are just flat unproveable.

"Jane O'Halloran is not your friend...she is your enemy. Sorry for all the crap you had to go through Jane but that does not give you an excuse to push your progressiveism on the rest of us...at least not without a fight."
There's another common fearmonger-Faux News tactic, painting the person you're disagreeing with as the ENEMY. I'm nobody's enemy. I think you're ill advised, sadly misinformed and have been hoodwinked into thinking you're under attack because we're not allowing you to inject religion unconstitutionally into law... but you're not my enemy. (I can't really blame you... if your talking heads are constantly telling you you're persecuted, under attack and a martyr-to-be at any moment, I guess it's just a matter of time until you start believing it.) You still have the right to believe as you please, for yourself. I'm not trying to take your Bible away from you (please. Keep it. READ it and try comprehending it better, maybe. Look into that sermon on the mount stuff - there's some good stuff in there - and take note how BADLY that aligns with Evangelical politics... then consider that anyone who's trying to sell you that distinctively twisted Evangelical political angle may be incorrect or deliberately deceptive about some of the "facts" they're selling you. Ask yourself what they might have to gain, if they ARE deceiving you. Learn to think for yourself!)
No, actually, I don't care if you stay Christian or not. I don't care what your beliefs are as long as you keep them to yourself. I'm just trying to stop you from pushing me into a Christianized Burqa, pal - there's a reason a lot of us joke about Evangelicals being basically the Taliban with a Bible instead of a Koran. As long as you keep trying to turn this country into a white-straight-Christians-only-everyone-else-get-out nation, I will keep fighting for the FREEDOMS of people to hold their OWN beliefs and live by them, and showing actual real-life compassion to other people who are different from me. I know there are some avowed Christians who also fight this fight. Let people be free to do as they choose, and God - if he's there - be the judge of who the real sinner is. Let him establish his own kingdom on earth. Humans are far too power-hungry - ESPECIALLY church leaders, as we've seen time and again with sex scandals and ripping off people by telling them they can buy their way to heaven and the cruel fruits of the lies of Prosperity Gospel that are now spreading their nasty seeds through Evangelicalism, telling the poor and the sick they deserve to suffer and miss out on basics, in direct contradiction to Jesus' own words.

15 likes, 3 dislikes
Posted by Jane O'Halloran on 05/19/2017 at 2:32 PM

Re: “Reader: Free speech is for everyone except Christians

My friend Rev. Pedigo, the reason there are so many lawsuits against Christian groups is because too many of them are pushing their religious agendas and unnecessary religious-moral constructs into the public sphere.

You claim to hold the freedom of speech very dear. The problem is, the First Amendment itself ALSO says that while you are in fact free to practice your religion for yourself, you do not have the right to push your religion on everyone else in a legal/political sphere. You may not establish your religious morality as the code of the nation or the state or the city. You may not use your religion to persecute gay people because you think their "lifestyle" is gross or immoral (believe me, you don't want me to start going on about the gross hypocrisy and rampant lack of morality and ethics within the church. I used to be a Christian, so I KNOW - I saw pastors cheating on their wives, I saw a divorce rate that didn't differ from anyone outside the church, I saw the logical hypocrisy).

If you could make Christianity the state religion and start stuffing the law books with Biblical guidelines, it is not hard for me to imagine establishment of a theocratic Christian version of Sharia law where women are relegated to kitchens, kept under the ownership of men as transferred from their fathers to a new husband whom they may not divorce for any reason including abuse, perpetually pregnant with no right to their own bodies and freely used as scapegoats by men who claim they can't control their own sexual desires because a woman "tempted" him. Based on what I've seen written and spoken by evangelists and "Christian" teachers and authors and popular figures, it's easy to imagine a nation where it is legal to murder gay people for their sexuality, infidels/nonbelievers can also be shunned and killed, and science is abandoned in favor of religious dogma that has no bearing in reality. That would be because all these things have happened before. We called it the Dark Ages, and those of us who have studied history and actually care about the freedoms of our fellow Americans have no desire to return to that model or even go down that road any distance.

Even more insulting, you don't really even understand what persecution IS. Having people respond negatively to your diatribe, as others have pointed out, is not persecution. It's a normal, quite civil response, but you're not entitled to a hugbox just because you have an opinion, sir.

Shall I explain persecution to you, then? At the really extreme end, persecution is being jailed and fed to lions for the entertainment of a crowd, but I don't think anybody has experienced that for a good 1800 years or so, Christian or not. In the modern world, though, persecution is being denied a job or services. Persecution is being henpecked and harassed out of your community because you're the wrong religion or sexuality. Persecution is being kicked out of your home by your own parents because you're gay. Persecution is having someone single you out for harassment and bullying because you're different. Persecution is being told you're a bad person and you're going to hell randomly on the street, when they don't even know you and you never asked them their opinion anyway. Persecution is being killed or beaten up by an angry group for your religion or sexuality. You want to talk about persecution in THIS country? Fine, let's discuss the Salem witch trials (led by Christians). Let's discuss the lynchings of black people during the civil rights movement(the KKK are Christian terrorists). Let's discuss Matthew Shepard, and also those gay "conversion camps" run by Christians that abuse these poor kids so badly that they commit suicide at a shocking rate - and they're STILL DOING IT. Let's discuss the mobs of angry Christian pro-lifers that gather outside women's health clinics to shout down and harass anyone who enters, even if they're there for regular gynecological or obstetrical services, because the mob has no idea who's actually there for an abortion, and they don't really care since they're handing out medically-disproven LIES in their pamphlets anyway. Let's talk about the Christian websites that egg on those same protesters until one of them decides to shoot a doctor in the head and bomb a clinic.... or just shoot up a clinic. Let's discuss the rampant racism that's running rife through Evangelical ranks right now, as they cower in fear of starving Syrian refugees who are tired of being bombed and have already gone through 12-18 months of vetting by immigration officials to screen out terrorists! Let's discuss Westboro Baptist. Let's discuss how Christian businesses like Hobby Lobby can disallow coverage for birth control - even though the grounds on which they made that legal decision were scientifically unfounded - and even for married women that need it for other medical reasons than preventing pregnancy (not that it's any business of an employer just what medical conditions their employee has!) Let's discuss how Christians are leading the charge to ban some people from public bathrooms because of "men in dresses" (when there have been more Republican politicians convicted of harassing women in bathrooms in the last three years than transsexuals have EVER been, and the only men in dresses that have been harassing children with alarming frequency are CATHOLIC PRIESTS!) Let's talk about a religion that's so obsessed with what consenting adults do with their genitals in the privacy of their own homes that they want to be able to deny them any kind of services, from cakes to funerals to critical medical services like Plan B, in the name of "religious freedom". Let's talk about a religion that thinks it has the right to dictate what adults can or cannot get married to other adults outside the doors of their own building - despite DEMONSTRABLY having no ownership of the concept of marriage, and denying other, sicker definitions of marriage within the Bible itself (forcing rape victims to marry the men who raped them? classy.)

There is NO OTHER MAJOR RELIGION in this nation that has been as historically coddled, while being dead-on guilty of perpetuating persecution, unethical behavior and abuse on other human beings as the Christian religion group, my friend. And we're tired of taking it while you bash our heads in with your Bibles. We're fed up. If you want to know WHY younger generations are abandoning Christianity, this is why - it's not because kids these days are more evil, it's because they've seen how toxic, manipulative, selfish, controlling and abusive American Christianity has become, at its core, and they want no part of it. "Do unto others as you would have them do unto you" has turned into "do unto others quickly, before they can get you first". The kindness Jesus preached has become so conditional, with so many strings attached, that it's just not even worth it anymore.

Go worship Christ on your own, or with your flock. Follow your own religious rules - no one begrudges you that. Go in peace. But kindly leave everyone else out of it. We don't have to follow your dogmas, so STOP trying to force them on us legally (or be prepared to meet the ACLU in court!) Leave us alone and let God sort it out later, if he cares to.

And maybe, if any of this has gotten through your head from this former Christian, maybe you could do some self examination and start pushing to clean up the toxic waste dump that is Christianity in America.

24 likes, 4 dislikes
Posted by Jane O'Halloran on 05/18/2017 at 11:28 PM

Re: “How the other half really lives

Kurt... why does the partisanship even matter? It's just there to give the rest of us an ILLUSION of choice. Name the poison if you like, Republican or Democrat, but at the end of the day, it is still poison and will still sicken and eventually kill you. They've ALL been paid off to favor some wealthy party and make/bend the rules in their favor, because in our system he who has the gold ALWAYS makes the rules, and for some reason that I will NEVER comprehend, it doesn't seem to matter to anyone whether the people who have the gold are greedy sociopaths. And we are their "human resources", indeed - ready to be strip-mined and then discarded with the dross and tailings in their never-ending search for more gold.

In the big picture, we're neither a democracy nor a republic. We're an oligarchy, in truth, as is nearly every ruling system in the world, at its core, but few want to admit it. And we are also representative of the cycle seen throughout history. There have been a few variations, and the methods have changed a bit thanks to modern times, but on the whole, the story remains the same: wealthy oligarchs crush the rest under heel, until the rest finally refuse to take it anymore, rise up, and either allow the overloaded, bloated system to crash, or actively overthrow/reform the system (whether violently or peacefully). A new system arises, which a wealthy few begin to corrupt to their own benefit within a few decades, if not from inception... they dare not do too much too soon, of course, with the reforms so freshly in mind. So the people enjoy a few generations of relative prosperity, but the oligarchs continue their creeping march of greed and start to crush them under heel... repeat ad nauseum, every few hundred years. So if you want to know what will happen next, just consult your history books - human nature is constant and does not change much if at all, so the outcome will be more or less the same, and the cycle will continue.

Don't get me wrong, I'm no anarchist. I think people love organization and authority structures far too much for true anarchy to be a realistic or even a preferable end. But, I know history and human nature. We just don't want to admit that our system is just as deeply flawed as any other, because that would mean, by extension, admitting that America is not intrinsically better than anyplace else. It's foolish hubris.

3 likes, 0 dislikes
Posted by Jane O'Halloran on 01/30/2014 at 1:49 PM

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