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Good Morning Nanty Glo!

Monday, March 28 2005
Jon Kennedy, webmaster

Some of my
best friends...

Over a year ago I did a series of seven Jonal articles entitled "Defense of Marriage," in which I quoted various interest groups about the importance of preserving the traditional view of marriage as a union of a man and a woman, in the hope of preserving the societal structure that can best serve the needs and interests of children. I quoted documents from Catholic, Protestant, and secular bodies and individuals putting forth their philosophical case for defending this view of marriage against the campaign to legalize and establish "gay marriages."

Recently I found an article that is, I think, the best I've read on the topic and it is, ironically (in that we see in the press and hear on the broadcast media much more from the liberal side of Judaism on such topics) by a traditionalist Jewish columnist, Samuel Silver, chairman of Toward Tradition, writing on a website that was new to me, Intellecutal Conservative.com. Though it is dated April 19, 2004, I just recently found it, so it's new to me. I recommend reading the whole article, entitled Some of My Best Friends Are Gay, if you find the topic interesting, confusing, or curious. Meanwhile, I'm giving a few sample thoughts to whet your appetite. Silver's second paragraph is:

This critical debate is not truly between homosexuals and heterosexuals; it is between two opposing worldviews, one secular and the other religious. Approximately 80% of Americans hold a religious worldview, but the secular left has done an excellent, yet nefarious, job of dividing those with a religious worldview through false stereotyping. Their manipulative “divide & conquer” strategy has led many religious people to erroneously fear other religious people more than they fear the secular fundamentalists set on destroying religion and Judeo-Christian values. Thus, many Americans are understandably confused about the same-sex marriage issue and its ultimate driving force, secular fundamentalism.

Already he appeals to more than two of my own favorite touchstones, but the two I want to highlight are "Judeo-Christian values" and "secular fundamentalism." Some liberals maintain that "Judeo-Christian" is an invention of the Christian right to suggest that there's a link between Jews and Christians that doesn't truly exist, suggesting that it's offensive to Jews and therefore politically incorrect. I even bought into this thinking for a long time in my editorial career and preferred to use the word "biblical," but that is also a charged term that has to be defined every time it's introduced. It is, therefore, refreshing and reassuring to find that Jewish writers like Silver (and Dennis Prager, who has been doing a series on the topic in his columns) not only like the designation "Judeo-Christian" but find it vital for understanding the unique American ethos. "Secular fundamentalism" suggests on its face that though secular humanists love to attack Christian and other confessional religious brands of "fundamentalism," they have their own fundamentalism, and it is no less narrow-minded in its way.

Closing in on today's limit, I'll close with this:

To discuss the religious view of human nature is not to ignore science, which also informs the opinions of Americans. Many people may not be aware that modern science is belatedly learning that the Biblical view of human nature is more accurate than the views that have been the foundation for most of secular liberalism. In his courageous new book, The Blank Slate, The Modern Denial of Human Nature, MIT professor Steven Pinker, himself a secular liberal, concludes “…the theory of human nature coming out of the cognitive revolution has more in common with the Judeo-Christian theory of human nature …than with behaviorism, social constructionism, and other versions of the Blank Slate.” Those that think religion is just ancient superstition should take a second, or in many cases, a first look.

Coming from such an unexpected source, I think this essay may go father to persuade a lot of readers who tend to discount what Christians, especially if they're identified with the "right," than similar essays from the better-known conservative media.

I'm eager to see any reactions any of you may have on reading Silver's entire essay.

Webmaster Jon Kennedy 

A complete index of Jon Kennedy's Jonals for 2001 - 2005

Education program

Arnold Schwarzenegger is backing legislation to ban junk food in schools. It's part of Arnold's new school program—No Child Left With a Big Behind.

—Jay Leno

Thought for today

Christian one-liners
God loves everyone, but probably prefers "fruits of the spirit" over "religious nuts!"

Sent by Carl Essex  

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