Thursday, August 03, 2017

Internet Wading: Religion, poltiics, and photos

Circumstance—chiefly illness, in this case, kept me from a new Internet Wading post on Monday, despite my best intentions. Rather than waste it, better late than never. Besides, some of these are about old topics.

What about beginning with porn? Not literally—the word’s really just in the title of an article: “‘Ancient porn’ sheds new light on Bible verses”, which argues that one has to understand Roman culture, as preserved in the Pompeii, to understand what Paul was on about, and why modern, loving same-gender relationships are not, in fact, condemned by the Christian bible.

“The invention of ‘heterosexuality’” talks about how our modern concepts of sexuality came to be. Short version: It’s all made up.

In “I was the police officer who proposed at Pride – the hatred floored me”, Phil Adlem gives the rest of the story, the part beyond the feel-good social media shares.

Religion having a go at LGBT people is nothing new, but there is such a thing as senisble religion, and last April Jack Jenkins wrote an interesting piece for ThinkProgress, “The Religious Left isn’t what the media thinks it is”. It explains how the Religious Left is different from the Religious Right, and how they’re finding their voice. In July, Jenkins wrote, “The Religious Left is getting under right-wing media’s skin”.

My friend Roger Green recently shared Jenkins’ July piece on a recent “Rambling” post, and he also shared “How to Talk With Religious Conservatives About LGBT Rights”, which I thought was interesting and probably useful to people who want to do this. Quite frankly, I’m a bit over doing that.

Among those who are over religion generally, Alain de Botton spoke with Vox on “atheism 2.0”. I thought this was particularly interesting, not the least because I’ve been thinking many of the same things, especially about the conflict with some of the more agressive atheists.

An article about a secular religion, so to speak, “Eating Clean is Useless” by Michael Easter, suggests, "Clean eating? That's some rich white people shit." Anti-science quasi-politics of any sort drives me around the bend more often than not, and this is one of those things. I’ve always found this sort of fad elitist and the most fervent advocates blind to their own privilege—and how silly they sound.

My old friend Jason saw, and photographed rainbows over Washington, DC, but it made me wonder if DC had heavenly permission to have a rainbow? An Australian-born American religious crackpot lit up his “Ark Encounter” holy theme park, in rainbow light, then Tweeted that “Christians need to take back the rainbow as we do… God owns it…” Naturally, this didn’t go well with the folks on Twitter.

“The richest families in Florence in 1427 are still the richest families in Florence”. Surprised? Well, “Putin’s Hackers Now Under Attack—From Microsoft" surprised me a little.

Maybe some more personal history: “Woman retakes Europe vacation photos in same spots 30 years later”. And, I do love photography, so: "Stunning Photos Showing NYC Subway Cars Being Dumped Into the Ocean” (all the photos are on the photographer’s website).

And that’s a good place to stop this Internet Wading—a post that’s just a drop in the blogging ocean itself.

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