5,000 hits

In the 7+ weeks this blog has been in existence, it has just passed the 5,000 hits mark officially on Dec 5. Yay arbitrary numbers!

And thanks.

Christian Science

Christian Science is basically the belief that healing can be better had through really, really believing in God and praying to him rather than through all that crazy stuff they call “real medicine”. People who believe this hogwash aren’t as bad as those cults which entirely reject modern medicine all the way down to aspirin (which is actually emitted by some plants when under stress), but nevertheless, they are rather repugnant. A man by the name Seth Johnson recently wrote a letter to the editor (Kennebec Journal) explaining how his hooey actually does work! Like magic!

The article, “Child Deaths Test Faith-Healing Exemption” that appeared in the Nov. 19 Kennebec Journal and Waterville Sentinel was triggered by tragic events. I’d like to point out that Christian Science is not related to the faith-healing groups mentioned.

Maine law does and should require parents to provide proper health care for their children, but it does not require that care be medical. Accommodations in the law are not intended to defend the abuse or neglect of a child, but are intended to allow for the reasonable and responsible practice of one’s religion, such as Christian Science, through prayer and spiritual treatment.

Christian Science parents are caring, loving and responsible with their children and practice their religion with their family’s health and well-being as their first priority. My family practices Christian Science because it works, and my children’s health is of utmost importance.

Seth C. Johnson
Christian Science Committee on Publication Falmouth

Okay, well, he didn’t actually explain how it works, he simply asserted that it does. Of course, this is a word-limited letter, so perhaps it is unfair to expect a decent explanation. Fortunately, this is the Internet.

Christian Scientists believe that sickness is the result of fear, ignorance, or sin, and that when the erroneous belief is corrected, the sickness will disappear.

Magic?

They consider that suffering can occur only when one believes (consciously or unconsciously) in the supposed reality of a problem; if one changes one’s understanding, the belief is revealed as false, and the acknowledgement that the sickness has no power, since God is the only power, eliminates the sickness.

Ah, I see. More verbose magic.

Seth Johnson, you hold hack beliefs. There is nothing healing about your particular god; there is no substance to your belief that sickness can go away if you close your eyes really, really hard and pray. Your children may as well have no health insurance – at least until you actually excercise that coverage and go to a real doctor.

Oh, Billo

Washington State has recently granted permits for three displays in its Capitol building. One is a “holiday tree”, the other a nativity scene, and the third a sign from an atheist group which reads as follows:

At this season of
the Winter Solstice
may reason prevail.

There are no gods,
no devils, no angels,
no heaven or hell.
There is only our natural world.
Religion is but
myth and superstition
that hardens hearts
and enslaves minds.

Okay, fair enough. The state is allowing permits for displays which are privately funded. Assuming there isn’t profanity or pornography involved, there is little reason to deny a group a permit. Washington, being the generally progressive state it is, of course, allowed the display. We can all disagree and do it in harmony, no?

No.

Billo is a mook. Around 1:45, he goes on to say Christmas is a federal holiday honoring Jesus. Actually, Billo, Ganulin v. United States, 532 US 973 (2001) found that Christmas had been so sufficiently secularized that its status as a federal holiday was permissable. In other words, had they found the point of the federal holiday, in its modern form, to endorse Jesus, they would have taken away its holiday status.

Billo next goes on to rhetorically ask if it is necessary that a sign be placed next to the likeness of Martin Luther King Jr for people who disagree with his religious views. There’s a disconnect. We celebrate MLK’s civil rights movements, not his religion. The holiday is to honor his achievements, not his Christianity. Beside that, yes, if one group has a right to obtain a permit for a display on public property, so do other groups. This doesn’t mean they have the right to put their display where they please – the KKK cannot put a sign in front of a bust or portrait or whathaveyou of MLK. Just the same, no group would be allowed to do that.

Asked whether he was bothered by the atheist display next to his Nativity scene, Wesselius said, “I think the Nativity scene will speak for itself.” But he added, “I appreciate freedom of speech and freedom of access. That’s why they’re in there, and hey – you know, that’s great.”

This man, from the original article, has the correct attitude and outlook. We can disagree, but we can do it in harmony.