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A Thanksgiving Story About One of Those 47-Percenters

Opinion • Views: 28,335

Tuesday I had to go over to Newark to visit a client to provide training for the new CMS (content management system) we installed for their website. The visit was uneventful. I wrapped things up and left, then called for a taxi and went outside to wait for it. The neighborhood isn’t a terribly rough one (at least not by East Coast standards), but it’s adjacent to a somewhat ghetto-ish one.

So I was sitting on one of those big tree planters futzing around with the camera on my new iPod and must’ve missed my cell phone slipping out of the side pocket of my purse. I got home, settled back down in front of my computer, and got back to work, never realizing that my phone was missing.

A couple of hours later my land line rang. I didn’t even look at the Caller ID. The man on the other end said he had no idea who he was calling, but he’d found a cell phone over by [redacted] and since my number was in it he thought I might be able to tell him who it belonged to because he’d like to return it.

I told him that I most certainly did know who it belonged to—me!—then I told him how I thought I’d lost it. I thanked him for his honesty and told him that it was always heartening to to be reminded how many good people there still are in the world. That did it—all of a sudden he got all choked up, told me he was “just trying to please the Lord”, and then began telling me his story.

He said his name was Mr. S and he was originally from Fayetteville, NC. He’d worked as a private security guard for most of his life, but was retired now. He said years ago he’d done something bad that he felt “made the Lord angry”, and while he’d tried to make up for it and never repeated the mistake, he often felt like his life just wasn’t worth living. He said every time he hit that low point something would happen that gave him an opportunity to do a good deed, and he felt that was “the Lord telling me to keep going.”

I just sat there for a few seconds, gob smacked: Is this guy nuts? Why is he telling me all this? What do I say?? Then the old taxi driver in me took over and I decided to just go with the flow.

I told him I was quite sure his life was worth living seeing as how he was a good enough man to go to the trouble of trying to locate a total stranger so he could return their cell phone. I told him I understood his need to do good deeds and was very happy that the Lord was watching over him. I then thanked him again for his efforts at which point he asked me (between sniffles) when he could bring it to me. I told him that I didn’t live Newark, but he could go to the front office of the building I’d been in and ask for Ms. N and she’d see that I got it back. He said the knew the building well and wanted to know what time he should go there the next morning. I told him 8:00 AM was probably good as they get started early.

He went on to tell me that he’s officially retired as of last week is glad he walks around the neighborhood a lot because being able to return my phone means, “I’m getting another message from the Lord is a sign that I need to keep trying.” His utter sincerity made my heart feel all squishy (I was nearly in tears myself by then, heh).

I told him that if he’d also leave his address with Ms. N when he dropped off the phone, I’d be honored to send him a note or a card once in a while so that he’d know someone was thinking of him. He lit up when I said that and promised to leave his contact info, then asked if I would please call him from my cell when I got it back. I promised I would, then told him I was Muslim and, if he didn’t mind, I’d also like to keep him in my prayers. As expected, he said it didn’t matter one bit and he’d be very happy if I’d do so.

I thanked him one more time for all his efforts and he assured me that he was going to turn off the phone after we hung up so my battery wouldn’t die. How sweet is that? We said our goodbyes and hung up. I sat there for a while trying to digest the encounter.

After a few minutes I called our client to let her know what had happened. She thought it was a wonderful story and said she’s going to share it with her staff, some of whom aren’t from the area and are “afraid to even walk across the street here.” Then I called my boss to let her know about it since it’s a company cell phone and she’s responsible for the bill. Being of the same mindset as Ms. N and myself, she was willing to believe the phone would be returned and also thought it was a great story.

I know some of the cynics out there are probably thinking it was incredibly naive of me to trust Mr. S, but sometimes you just have to believe in people. Is he mentally unstable? Maybe, maybe not, but he’s a human being who is clearly hurting and striving for redemption by doing good deeds to please his Lord, regardless of what anyone thinks about his belief in such. If that belief gives him the incentive he needs and helps him feel that he’s worthy of being alive, then it’s a good thing in my book.

For the record, he did indeed show up Wednesday morning at [redacted]. As a matter of fact, he showed up early, at 7:30 AM! Our client, Ms. N, said he was indeed an older man and was wearing dark glasses. She said he was extremely sweet and seemed monumentally relieved at having been able to complete his mission of returning the phone. She dropped the phone off to me around 6:00 PM Wednesday evening. I tried to call Mr. S as I’d promised to do, but didn’t get an answer. I guess I’ll try again tomorrow or Friday. I think I’m also going to create a hand-made Christmas card for him because he seems like the kind of person who’d appreciate something like that.

Oh, and Mr. Romney? I know you’ll never read this, but Mr. S—an honest man, a God-fearing man, a man who worked hard all his life, a man who made a mistake once years ago still regrets it—is part of the 47% that you so casually & contemptuously insulted and then dismissed like so much rubbish. Shame on you and all the other Bible-thumping, race-bating, dog-whistling people in your party. If you’d gotten down off your high horse for a minute and bothered to discover for yourself what those 47% are made of, maybe you’d have shown more wisdom, had more respect for ALL Americans, and would be be planning your move to the White House and picking your staff & cabinet members right now instead of licking your wounds and snarking about how it’s not your fault you lost.

Mr. S, you’re a kind, decent, humble man and a good American, and this Thanksgiving I’m thankful for having crossed your path and thankful for the millions of others like you who are out there trudging stoically to work everyday, reminding us of what’s good & right, and keeping the wheels of our nation turning.

Happy Thanksgiving, everyone.

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126 comments

1 qubit2020  Thu, Nov 22, 2012 4:24:39am

What a great story. I don't comment much at LGF - more of a "lurker" than a commentator... but I love the conversations. You are one of my favorites - so smart, humane, and insightful. Thank you for making this a better place.

2 Dark_Falcon  Thu, Nov 22, 2012 7:32:12am

Fine story, thank you for sharing it.

3 Vicious Babushka  Thu, Nov 22, 2012 7:32:50am

This story brought tears to my eyes. Thank you for sharing!

4 nines09  Thu, Nov 22, 2012 7:40:53am

That was just the thing to read first today. We all have our demons and mistakes to overcome. Sometimes the best thing you can do for yourself is something for someone else. I think your future cards to this gentlemen will mean more than you know. Bless you CL and Happy Thanksgiving to you!

5 makeitstop  Thu, Nov 22, 2012 11:30:56am

Wonderful story, CL. Thank you for posting it.

6 SpikeDad  Thu, Nov 22, 2012 11:39:34am

So the guy only did this good dead to curry favor with an imaginary deity? Not impressed. Maybe when people do good deeds because it's the right thing to do and they have respect and appreciation for their fellow humans, we might survive as a species.

7 CuriousLurker  Thu, Nov 22, 2012 11:39:35am

re: #1 qubit2020

re: #2 Dark_Falcon

re: #3 Vicious Babushka

re: #4 nines09

re: #5 makeitstop

All: Thanks for your kind words. It was a humbling encounter...stuff like that has a way of pressing the reset button on my internal Things That Really Matter list.

qubit2020 : You should delurk more often! ;)

Charles: As always, thanks for the promotion and for providing the platform.

8 CuriousLurker  Thu, Nov 22, 2012 11:41:19am

There's always gotta be at least one. LOL

9 researchok  Thu, Nov 22, 2012 11:42:51am

re: #8 CuriousLurker

There's always gotta be at least one. LOL

At least once a day...

10 PhillyPretzel  Thu, Nov 22, 2012 11:44:18am

Great story CL. Happy Thanksgiving. :)

11 CuriousLurker  Thu, Nov 22, 2012 11:45:03am

re: #10 PhillyPretzel

Great story CL. Happy Thanksgiving. :)

Thanks, and same to you! ;)

12 Vicious Babushka  Thu, Nov 22, 2012 11:46:18am

Meanwhile,

13 allegro  Thu, Nov 22, 2012 11:50:40am

TD?!!! No shit! He was down. No whistle?

Wow, I don't think I've ever seen that happen before.

14 philosophus invidius  Thu, Nov 22, 2012 11:51:10am

re: #6 SpikeDad

So the guy only did this good dead to curry favor with an imaginary deity? Not impressed. Maybe when people do good deeds because it's the right thing to do and they have respect and appreciation for their fellow humans, we might survive as a species.

I understand your thought here, but I think it is mistaken and extremely uncharitable to theists. Does it honestly seem to you that someone who talks this way cares only about himself and the "gifts" he will get if he is a good little boy?

If it helps you appreciate this man's point of view, substitute his use of the word "my Lord" with "my conscience, my sense that I am not the center of the universe, my acknowledgment of the gap between who I am and who I know I ought to be."

15 CuriousLurker  Thu, Nov 22, 2012 11:53:23am

re: #14 philosophus invidius

Very eloquently put. Thank you.

16 Stanghazi  Thu, Nov 22, 2012 11:53:29am

Thank you for sharing CL. Made my TG day. Best to you.

17 b_sharp  Thu, Nov 22, 2012 11:54:22am

Thanks CL. You know I'm an atheist so religion is more or less meaningless to me but this story really isn't about religion, it's about being human. The old guy may be convinced it's his god giving him a message, but whatever validation or justification he uses to accept his actions, he recognized as a human living in a group of other humans that something he did in the past was wrong and he's trying to fix it. That's what we do. Even among all the bad things humans do to each other, we still, at the core, yearn to be part of a group helping each other survive, cope and even prosper.

Thanks again.

18 CuriousLurker  Thu, Nov 22, 2012 11:56:35am

re: #16 Stanghazi

Thank you for sharing CL. Made my TG day. Best to you.

You're welcome. Hope you have a wonderful holiday. ;)

19 jvic  Thu, Nov 22, 2012 11:57:37am

1. I'm not eager to know the specifics when my side puts its foot in it yet again, but I made myself listen--once--to Romney's 47% gaffe. To my ear, much worse than the words was the undiluted nastiness of the tone.

2. There are many things contributing to the GOP's steady decline since Reagan left office, but IMO the overriding reason is the refusal--refusal!--to appeal to the better angels of the electorate's nature.

3. This appears to describe your benefactor:

Abou Ben Adhem (may his tribe increase!)
Awoke one night from a deep dream of peace,
And saw, within the moonlight in his room,
Making it rich, and like a lily in bloom,
An angel writing in a book of gold:—
Exceeding peace had made Ben Adhem bold,
And to the Presence in the room he said
"What writest thou?"—The vision raised its head,
And with a look made of all sweet accord,
Answered "The names of those who love the Lord."
"And is mine one?" said Abou. "Nay, not so,"
Replied the angel. Abou spoke more low,
But cheerly still, and said "I pray thee, then,
Write me as one that loves his fellow men."

The angel wrote, and vanished. The next night
It came again with a great wakening light,
And showed the names whom love of God had blessed,
And lo! Ben Adhem's name led all the rest.

4. CL, we're not going to agree on much if anything, but we're both Americans. Thanks for your post, Happy Thanksgiving, and peace be upon you.

20 CuriousLurker  Thu, Nov 22, 2012 11:57:48am

re: #17 Inconsequential Consequence

Thanks CL. You know I'm an atheist so religion is more or less meaningless to me but this story really isn't about religion, it's about being human. The old guy may be convinced it's his god giving him a message, but whatever validation or justification he uses to accept his actions, he recognized as a human living in a group of other humans that something he did in the past was wrong and he's trying to fix it. That's what we do. Even among all the bad things humans do to each other, we still, at the core, yearn to be part of a group helping each other survive, cope and even prosper.

Thanks again.

Thank you. You hit it right on the nose.

21 calochortus  Thu, Nov 22, 2012 12:00:44pm

re: #17 Inconsequential Consequence

Thanks CL. You know I'm an atheist so religion is more or less meaningless to me but this story really isn't about religion, it's about being human. The old guy may be convinced it's his god giving him a message, but whatever validation or justification he uses to accept his actions, he recognized as a human living in a group of other humans that something he did in the past was wrong and he's trying to fix it. That's what we do. Even among all the bad things humans do to each other, we still, at the core, yearn to be part of a group helping each other survive, cope and even prosper.

Thanks again.

Quoted because there is no way I could have said it better.

22 researchok  Thu, Nov 22, 2012 12:03:03pm

re: #14 philosophus invidius

I would add one thing: If it takes religious convictions and beliefs to bring out the best in someone, who are we to argue?

Religion is a lot less about what we believe or do not believe as opposed to how we behave.

Which is equally applicable to non believers as well.

23 CuriousLurker  Thu, Nov 22, 2012 12:04:28pm

re: #19 jvic

That's a beautiful poem. Thanks for posting it; definitely a keeper.

4. CL, we're not going to agree on much if anything, but we're both Americans. Thanks for your post, Happy Thanksgiving, and peace be upon you.

Well, I can't find anything to disagree with in any of the points you just listed, heh. I'm glad you liked the story. Happy Thanksgiving & peace be upon you as well. ;)

24 CuriousLurker  Thu, Nov 22, 2012 12:14:33pm

Okay, enough with the group hugging—somebody post something controversial so we can fight about it. It wouldn't be a true LGF Thanksgiving if there weren't lizard scales mixed in with the turkey bones by the end of the day. //

25 Jolo5309  Thu, Nov 22, 2012 12:15:09pm

re: #17 Inconsequential Consequence

Thanks CL. You know I'm an atheist so religion is more or less meaningless to me but this story really isn't about religion, it's about being human. The old guy may be convinced it's his god giving him a message, but whatever validation or justification he uses to accept his actions, he recognized as a human living in a group of other humans that something he did in the past was wrong and he's trying to fix it. That's what we do. Even among all the bad things humans do to each other, we still, at the core, yearn to be part of a group helping each other survive, cope and even prosper.

Thanks again.

While it is a good story, you are wrong on what you see it as. It is a story about a man that feels guilty because he did something that made his deity angry. It could be something as simple as having sexual thoughts regarding another man, to him being a serial killer.

I think we are all in agreement that he probably is a good person, but based on the story he doesn't think so, he thinks unless he atones for this act he did he is going to Hell. So he has lived a life of thinking he is a bad person because he thinks his deity is angry with him.

26 Randall Gross  Thu, Nov 22, 2012 12:18:17pm

Here's something to argue about: Both sides claim victory

[Link: www.telegraph.co.uk...]

27 CuriousLurker  Thu, Nov 22, 2012 12:18:22pm

Aaaand, we're off!

I'm gonna go get a fresh cup of coffee and let you guys battle it out.

Atheist cage match! //

28 Randall Gross  Thu, Nov 22, 2012 12:19:56pm

mmmm coffee, that's what's missing after my nap.

29 Henchman Ghazi-808  Thu, Nov 22, 2012 12:20:16pm

re: #6 SpikeDad

So the guy only did this good dead to curry favor with an imaginary deity? Not impressed. Maybe when people do good deeds because it's the right thing to do and they have respect and appreciation for their fellow humans, we might survive as a species.

I'm an atheist, have a downding. Sometimes people are good to each other and you just have to appreciate it no matter their motivations.

30 Randall Gross  Thu, Nov 22, 2012 12:20:17pm

that and another deviled egg.

31 researchok  Thu, Nov 22, 2012 12:20:27pm

re: #25 Jolo5309

And what is wrong with seeking redemption or atonement?

32 Jolo5309  Thu, Nov 22, 2012 12:20:31pm

re: #27 CuriousLurker

Aaaand, we're off!

I'm gonna go get a fresh cup of coffee and let you guys battle it out.

Atheist cage match! //

I am only trying to make you guys happy (not cause I feel guilty though, because I am a moderately good person)...

33 researchok  Thu, Nov 22, 2012 12:20:57pm

re: #30 Randall Gross

One more can't hurt...

34 Jolo5309  Thu, Nov 22, 2012 12:21:38pm

re: #31 researchok

And what is wrong with seeking redemption or atonement?

Nothing, but he should be getting atonement from the person that he may have wronged, if he actually wronged anyone.


And what is right with feeling guilty for your entire life?

35 Four More Tears  Thu, Nov 22, 2012 12:21:53pm
36 Stanghazi  Thu, Nov 22, 2012 12:22:21pm

re: #24 CuriousLurker

Okay, enough with the group hugging—somebody post something controversial so we can fight about it. It wouldn't be a true LGF Thanksgiving if there weren't lizard scales mixed in with the turkey bones by the end of the day. //

I haven't eaten yet. Suffering to the smells.

At my Dads, they are so set in their ways that us middle aged kids aren't allowed in the kitchen! Fine, we are watching the walking dead from the beginning.

That's not really controversial, but oh well!!

37 CuriousLurker  Thu, Nov 22, 2012 12:23:08pm

re: #32 Jolo5309

I am only trying to make you guys happy (not cause I feel guilty though, because I am a moderately good person)...

Heh, by all means carry on!

38 Randall Gross  Thu, Nov 22, 2012 12:23:11pm

There are several studies including ones using MRI imaging that seem to indicate that people and their God seem to speak the exact same way, and believe the same things. So people who are trying to please the morals of their God are really trying to please the morals of themselves if you want to be empirical in your atheist skepticism.

39 Mattand  Thu, Nov 22, 2012 12:24:06pm

re: #36 Stanghazi

I haven't eaten yet. Suffering to the smells.

At my Dads, they are so set in their ways that us middle aged kids aren't allowed in the kitchen! Fine, we are watching the walking dead from the beginning.

That's not really controversial, but oh well!!

Holy shit, wait until you get to this season. Absolutely brutal.

40 Varek Raith  Thu, Nov 22, 2012 12:25:09pm

re: #8 CuriousLurker

There's always gotta be at least one. LOL

Indeed.

41 Interesting Times  Thu, Nov 22, 2012 12:26:02pm
42 lostlakehiker  Thu, Nov 22, 2012 12:27:19pm

re: #6 SpikeDad

So the guy only did this good dead to curry favor with an imaginary deity? Not impressed. Maybe when people do good deeds because it's the right thing to do and they have respect and appreciation for their fellow humans, we might survive as a species.

Why worry about the way he goes about figuring what's the right thing to do? He arrived at the answer.

A moral compass that points true is a good moral compass, no matter the color or style of the markings. A faith that guides a person to good deeds does not merit contempt, no matter how odd its doctrines may seem.

43 Henchman Ghazi-808  Thu, Nov 22, 2012 12:27:40pm

Let's get some controversy a-brewing...

[Link: www.dailymail.co.uk...]

44 makeitstop  Thu, Nov 22, 2012 12:29:56pm

Heading out to family dinner. I'm afraid I'll miss this round of bickering, but I'm sure you guys will make more. :)

Happy Thanksgiving, all. See you later.

45 Varek Raith  Thu, Nov 22, 2012 12:30:33pm

As a scary atheist overlord, I see no point in denigrating the man's reasons for doing what he did.
That's between him and his faith.

Now then, where's mah coffee?!

46 CuriousLurker  Thu, Nov 22, 2012 12:31:18pm

re: #38 Randall Gross

There are several studies including ones using MRI imaging that seem to indicate that people and their God seem to speak the exact same way, and believe the same things. So people who are trying to please the morals of their God are really trying to please the morals of themselves if you want to be empirical in your atheist skepticism.

That's interesting. Reminds of of something b_sharp (?) said in a thread from yesterday--something about patterns and our ability to conceptualize. Darn, I did't bookmark it and now I can't remember where I saw it.

47 researchok  Thu, Nov 22, 2012 12:31:35pm

re: #43 Henchman Ghazi-808

I'm brewing coffee.

48 Henchman Ghazi-808  Thu, Nov 22, 2012 12:31:37pm

re: #45 Varek Raith

As a scary atheist overlord, I see no point in denigrating the man's reasons for doing what he did.
That's between him and his faith.

Now then, where's mah coffee?!

We are the 1.6%!

49 Stanghazi  Thu, Nov 22, 2012 12:32:09pm

re: #39 Mattand

Holy shit, wait until you get to this season. Absolutely brutal.

I'm up to date. My brother is the noob - I'm enjoying watching again no doubt!!

50 allegro  Thu, Nov 22, 2012 12:32:55pm

Note to self: never yawn while hugging a lovable dog. Tonsil lick. Yuck.

51 CuriousLurker  Thu, Nov 22, 2012 12:33:48pm

re: #50 allegro

Note to self: never yawn while hugging a lovable dog. Tonsil lick. Yuck.

ROFL...eewwww!

52 Henchman Ghazi-808  Thu, Nov 22, 2012 12:34:14pm

I'm in Season 2, Episode 2, right after the son got shot and the cop buddy killed the guy at the school. That's going to eat him up inside....

... and I know the dude who cut his hand off in season 1 will return. That's sure to add even more drama.

53 b_sharp  Thu, Nov 22, 2012 12:34:16pm

re: #34 Jolo5309

Nothing, but he should be getting atonement from the person that he may have wronged, if he actually wronged anyone.

And what is right with feeling guilty for your entire life?

Nothing, but if you assume moral behaviour predates the creation of religion, as I do, then you have to recognize the feeling of having wronged somebody and wanting to make amends is an internal feature of not just humans, but of all apes that we've observed. This is actually something I've spent time trying to get across to creationists I've argued with, without any success. Morals predate god (sorry guys) so any moral feelings that trigger actions like the ones CL passed on to us, essentially start in our emotional centres and we look for reasons later. Some look outside themselves, hoping for final arbitration by a supreme authority.

The sense of having wronged somebody is what I'm addressing, not how that wrong is defined. If you want to attack nonsense like anti-LGBT, which has been used to define a 'wrong' I'm with you, but I'm not about to attack a person trying to fix a perceived wrong, because that's just him/her being human.

54 lostlakehiker  Thu, Nov 22, 2012 12:35:39pm

re: #38 Randall Gross

There are several studies including ones using MRI imaging that seem to indicate that people and their God seem to speak the exact same way, and believe the same things. So people who are trying to please the morals of their God are really trying to please the morals of themselves if you want to be empirical in your atheist skepticism.

Here's a simile. A chess player may seek to emulate another, greater player. They may actually make moves not because the move seems "right" to their own reason and calculation, but because it seems like the sort of move their hero would have made.

A soldier may seek to emulate a mythical hero.

If a player does this, and wins, does that mean he's not really a good player because he wasn't making his own moves? Or is the soldier not brave, because he, going by his own lights, would have run away?

Their actual conduct arose out of their own brain. No one else picked up the piece and put it on the next square. No one else stood to their post and fought it out. But their beliefs helped them find those courses of action. And those beliefs really do guide them to conduct they would not think of "on their own".

Moral beliefs are not silliness.

55 Jolo5309  Thu, Nov 22, 2012 12:36:10pm

re: #45 Varek Raith

As a scary atheist overlord, I see no point in denigrating the man's reasons for doing what he did.
That's between him and his faith.

Now then, where's mah coffee?!

I don't think anyone (at least I am not) is denigrating him, they (at least I am) are denigrating his religion for making him feel like his life is not worth living.

56 Jolo5309  Thu, Nov 22, 2012 12:37:15pm

re: #50 allegro

Note to self: never yawn while hugging a lovable dog. Tonsil lick. Yuck.

Bah, Riesling (our shepherd-lab) loves to french kiss.

57 Mattand  Thu, Nov 22, 2012 12:38:09pm

re: #45 Varek Raith

As a scary atheist overlord, I see no point in denigrating the man's reasons for doing what he did.
That's between him and his faith.

Now then, where's mah coffee?!

Heh, try saying that over at PZ Meyer's Pharyngula.

58 Killgore Trout  Thu, Nov 22, 2012 12:38:23pm

re: #52 Henchman Ghazi-808

I'm in Season 2, Episode 2, right after the son got shot and the cop buddy killed the guy at the school. That's going to eat him up inside....

... and I know the dude who cut his hand off in season 1 will return. That's sure to add even more drama.

You'll enjoy it. I have some issues with the writing, some of the characters get a bit generic at times, they miss some good opportunities to do more interesting things but it's still a fun series.

59 researchok  Thu, Nov 22, 2012 12:39:35pm

re: #54 lostlakehiker

Moral beliefs are fundamental to civilized societies.

Essentially, morality is the derivation of order from chaos. We create an environment in which we can not only survive, but thrive.

This is no small nuance- religions too are abouth thriving and not merely surviving.

To thrive means to find a way to accommodate 'the other', be they from within or without.

Societies that are not moral cannot thrive.

60 CuriousLurker  Thu, Nov 22, 2012 12:43:04pm

re: #53 Inconsequential Consequence

What was that thing you said yesterday (at least I think it was you) about patterns and conceptualizing? I didn't bookmark it, unfortunately, but I thought it was interesting.

61 Jolo5309  Thu, Nov 22, 2012 12:47:05pm

re: #53 Inconsequential Consequence

The sense of having wronged somebody is what I'm addressing, not how that wrong is defined. If you want to attack nonsense like anti-LGBT, which has been used to define a 'wrong' I'm with you, but I'm not about to attack a person trying to fix a perceived wrong, because that's just him/her being human.

We agree on morals so I deleted that part of your reply, as I am only going to focus on the part left in.

We don't know who he wronged (if anyone other than his deity), but he would be better served atoning to them instead of spending his life worrying about his deity being angry. This would improve his life and the person (if anyone) he wronged.

62 Interesting Times  Thu, Nov 22, 2012 12:52:39pm

Seems appropriate to the underlying theme of this thread:

63 Randall Gross  Thu, Nov 22, 2012 12:53:14pm

My dogs certainly do understand what's fair and what's not (try giving just one dog a biscuit without giving one to the other for a demonstration) but they do worship me, so I'm not sure about the point on religion preceding morals. I know I have morals, and no religion however.

64 CuriousLurker  Thu, Nov 22, 2012 12:53:24pm

re: #61 Jolo5309

We don't know who he wronged (if anyone other than his deity), but he would be better served atoning to them instead of spending his life worrying about his deity being angry. This would improve his life and the person (if anyone) he wronged.

Maybe it wasn't possible atone to the person he wronged. No way to know without knowing what it was he did.

65 Charles Johnson  Thu, Nov 22, 2012 12:55:29pm

Just noticed that we had a young earth creationist/climate change denier register recently, and he tried to do that thing where they leave crazy rants at the end of dead threads.

[Link: littlegreenfootballs.com...]

[Link: littlegreenfootballs.com...]

I'll never understand why wingnut trolls do this dead thread hero thing. Do they have some kind of idea that it makes them the winner in some weird way?

Wingnuts are strange.

66 Eventual Carrion  Thu, Nov 22, 2012 12:56:17pm

re: #35 Four More Tears

[Embedded content]

Just got a text back from my son that his mom wasn't out in that. She lives in Bridge City Texas which is west of Beaumont where that happened. She travels that road all the time, she could have been heading to Houston to see her parents.

Just got an update text that he and his wife saw 3 wrecks on their way back to San Antonio from his grandma's in Houston this morning. Let's take it easy out there people.

67 researchok  Thu, Nov 22, 2012 12:57:26pm

re: #61 Jolo5309

I can think of worse things than remorse motivated by seeking redemption from his faith.

There are many people who find inspiration from other beliefs besides those they have themselves.

I talk and talk and talk, and I haven't taught people in fifty years what my father taught me by example in one week.

I watched a small man with thick calluses on both hands work fifteen and sixteen hours a day. I saw him once literally bleed from the bottoms of his feet, a man who came here uneducated, alone, unable to speak the language, who taught me all I needed to know about faith and hard work by the simple eloquence of his example.

Mario Cuomo

68 researchok  Thu, Nov 22, 2012 12:59:52pm

re: #67 researchok

I suspect the Cuomo family has an appreciation for Thanksgiving many of us cannot.

69 ThomasLite  Thu, Nov 22, 2012 1:00:23pm

re: #65 Charles Johnson

Just noticed that we had a young earth creationist/climate change denier register recently, and he tried to do that thing where they leave crazy rants at the end of dead threads.

[Link: littlegreenfootballs.com...]

[Link: littlegreenfootballs.com...]

I'll never understand why wingnut trolls do this dead thread hero thing. Do they have some kind of idea that it makes them the winner in some weird way?

Wingnuts are strange.

if the thread is pretty much dead you might not see or delete it (or so they seem to think) and so it remains there; anyone who ploughs through all comments on an ancient thread he just googled (not a rare occurrence on less heavily commented blogs; here, I doubt it - too much work!) will get exposed to the rant and, or so he thinks, might just be convinced by it.

...or at least that's what I've always thought.

70 Jolo5309  Thu, Nov 22, 2012 1:00:48pm

re: #67 researchok

I can think of worse things than remorse motivated by seeking redemption from his faith.

There are many people who find inspiration from other beliefs besides those they have themsellves.

Mario Cuomo

I can think of better things than trying to seek forgiveness for something that may or may not be wrong to someone that probably doesn't exist.

71 CuriousLurker  Thu, Nov 22, 2012 1:01:37pm

re: #67 researchok

[Cue Twilight Zone Music]

I looked up that very quote last night while typing this story because something about it called it to mind and I couldn't find it on my computer. GMTA ;)

72 researchok  Thu, Nov 22, 2012 1:02:42pm

re: #70 Jolo5309

That's you.

He may see things differently.

73 researchok  Thu, Nov 22, 2012 1:03:48pm

re: #71 CuriousLurker

I added a second (even more moving, IMO) quote.

74 b_sharp  Thu, Nov 22, 2012 1:04:15pm

re: #60 CuriousLurker

What was that thing you said yesterday (at least I think it was you) about patterns and conceptualizing? I didn't bookmark it, unfortunately, but I thought it was interesting.

That sounds like something I'd say, but I didn't post much yesterday and I don't remember saying that then.

There are a lot of very bright people here, so you may have a difficult time figuring out who said it.

75 b_sharp  Thu, Nov 22, 2012 1:05:43pm

re: #63 Randall Gross

My dogs certainly do understand what's fair and what's not (try giving just one dog a biscuit without giving one to the other for a demonstration) but they do worship me, so I'm not sure about the point on religion preceding morals. I know I have morals, and no religion however.

Moral precede religion.

76 Jolo5309  Thu, Nov 22, 2012 1:07:11pm

re: #72 researchok

That's you.

He may see things differently.

Which is why religion poisons everything. He has felt guilty for something that may be totally inconsequential for a large portion of his life, does that not mean anything to you at all?

77 philosophus invidius  Thu, Nov 22, 2012 1:07:33pm

re: #55 Jolo5309

I don't think anyone (at least I am not) is denigrating him, they (at least I am) are denigrating his religion for making him feel like his life is not worth living.

Maybe it is instead his religion that makes him feel like life is worth living, that it gives him hope that he cannot find in Newark.

78 researchok  Thu, Nov 22, 2012 1:08:20pm

re: #63 Randall Gross

One does not need religion to be moral, of course.

For many however, religion does provide a moral platform.

While many take a dim view of religious orthodoxy, it bears remembering the vast majority of believer are non dogmatic.

79 b_sharp  Thu, Nov 22, 2012 1:11:59pm

re: #76 Jolo5309

Which is why religion poisons everything. He has felt guilty for something that may be totally inconsequential for a large portion of his life, does that not mean anything to you at all?

Sure, that's why I made a point to separate the definition of a wrong from the basic emotions.

80 CuriousLurker  Thu, Nov 22, 2012 1:12:01pm

re: #73 researchok

I added a second (even more moving, IMO) quote.

That's precisely the one I'm talking about, the one about his father's calloused hands. My dad was a carpenter by trade, so the big, calloused hands of men who do manual labor always remind me of him.

Those guys didn't use contracts, their word & their handshake represented their reputation & honor. Knowledge of each other's personal integrity was all the guarantee they required amongst themselves.

81 Varek Raith  Thu, Nov 22, 2012 1:12:36pm

re: #76 Jolo5309

Which is why religion poisons everything. He has felt guilty for something that may be totally inconsequential for a large portion of his life, does that not mean anything to you at all?

Frankly, it's none of my business.

82 researchok  Thu, Nov 22, 2012 1:13:02pm

re: #76 Jolo5309

Religion poisons everything?

Not every religious expression is destructive or evil- far from it.

Tell that to the legions of believers whose faith motivates them to to spend a lifetime doing good works.

There are Christian, Muslim, Jewish and Hindu organizations for example, that are dedicated to improving the lives of others.

Hardly poison.

Faith based good works don't make the six o'clock news but they are an integral part of our world.

83 CuriousLurker  Thu, Nov 22, 2012 1:13:09pm

re: #74 Inconsequential Consequence

That sounds like something I'd say, but I didn't post much yesterday and I don't remember saying that then.

There are a lot of very bright people here, so you may have a difficult time figuring out who said it.

Darn. Okay, thanks.

84 Four More Tears  Thu, Nov 22, 2012 1:13:58pm

Nevermind Thanksgiving disappearing under an avalanche of 8pm sales...

85 Stanghazi  Thu, Nov 22, 2012 1:14:01pm

Update: still no food

86 researchok  Thu, Nov 22, 2012 1:14:58pm

re: #80 CuriousLurker

Yes, men like your dad and similar type men are a rarity, having been replaced by much more eloquent and smarter men.

What a pity. We are the poorer for that.

87 Varek Raith  Thu, Nov 22, 2012 1:15:04pm

re: #85 Stanghazi

Update: still no food

I haz food.

88 researchok  Thu, Nov 22, 2012 1:15:39pm

re: #85 Stanghazi

Think Golden Corral.
//

89 Interesting Times  Thu, Nov 22, 2012 1:16:52pm

re: #83 CuriousLurker

Darn. Okay, thanks.

It may have been freetoken on one of these creationism threads:

[Link: littlegreenfootballs.com...]

[Link: littlegreenfootballs.com...]

[Link: littlegreenfootballs.com...]

(though I can't find a comment that specifically mentions the words "pattern" or "conceptualize")

90 Jolo5309  Thu, Nov 22, 2012 1:17:08pm

re: #85 Stanghazi

Update: still no food

Update, I had two bottles of chipotle hot sauce delivered to my work, does that make you feel any better?

91 b_sharp  Thu, Nov 22, 2012 1:18:31pm

re: #89 Interesting Times

It may have been freetoken on one of these creationism threads:

[Link: littlegreenfootballs.com...]

[Link: littlegreenfootballs.com...]

[Link: littlegreenfootballs.com...]

That was the first name that came to my mind.

92 Eventual Carrion  Thu, Nov 22, 2012 1:19:58pm

Detroit is determined to give away this game.

93 Jolo5309  Thu, Nov 22, 2012 1:20:40pm

re: #82 researchok

Religion poisons everything?

Not every religious expression is destructive or evil- far from it.

Tell that to the legions of believers whose faith motivates them to to spend a lifetime doing good works.

There are Christian, Muslim, Jewish and Hindu organizations for example, that are dedicated to improving the lives of others.

Hardly poison.

Faith based good works don't make the six o'clock news but they are an integral part of our world.

Yes everything, it poisoned this fellow's life because he has spent a large portion of his life feeling guilty over something that may be inconsequential.

Since you brought up these religious organisations that are dedicated to improving the lives of others, I can ask, does doing good work in one area mitigate doing evil in another?

94 CuriousLurker  Thu, Nov 22, 2012 1:21:14pm

re: #89 Interesting Times

It may have been freetoken on one of these creationism threads:

[Link: littlegreenfootballs.com...]

[Link: littlegreenfootballs.com...]

[Link: littlegreenfootballs.com...]

Ooh, you might very well be right, thanks! I'm gonna go poke around and see if I can find it.

95 allegro  Thu, Nov 22, 2012 1:22:21pm

re: #84 Four More Tears

[Embedded content]

Nevermind Thanksgiving disappearing under an avalanche of 8pm sales...

From all the ads I'm seeing it looks like every major retailer is doing it, even Home Depot. Sears is opening from midnight 'til 4am, if I heard the ad right. It makes me cringe for the employees forced to work those ghastly hours and for what? I will never get this black Friday nonsense.

96 researchok  Thu, Nov 22, 2012 1:24:49pm

re: #93 Jolo5309

Yes everything, it poisoned this fellow's life because he has spent a large portion of his life feeling guilty over something that may be inconsequential.

Since you brought up these religious organisations that are dedicated to improving the lives of others, I can ask, does doing good work in one area mitigate doing evil in another?

How did religion poison his life?

Simply because it did- in your opinion?

Do you really believe only religious people are wracked with guilt over behaviors they are ashamed of?

Lastly, no where did I say or even remotely imply good works mitigate evil.

However, since you brought it up let me ask you- do you believe those who profess no faith cannot be evil?

97 allegro  Thu, Nov 22, 2012 1:24:57pm

re: #92 Eventual Carrion

Detroit is determined to give away this game.

Houston got an enormous and pretty outrageous gift. Detroit won it. (And I'm a Texans fan.)

98 b_sharp  Thu, Nov 22, 2012 1:25:07pm

re: #93 Jolo5309

Yes everything, it poisoned this fellow's life because he has spent a large portion of his life feeling guilty over something that may be inconsequential.

Since you brought up these religious organisations that are dedicated to improving the lives of others, I can ask, does doing good work in one area mitigate doing evil in another?

That depends on a number of factors doesn't it? How bad is the bad, how often is the bad done, how good is the good, how often is the good done, do either the good or the bad affect one or many people, or even, as a society do we weight bad more heavily than we do good.

It's not a simple question.

99 Eventual Carrion  Thu, Nov 22, 2012 1:27:46pm

re: #97 allegro

Houston got an enormous and pretty outrageous gift. Detroit won it. (And I'm a Texans fan.)

Wow, Detroit just took the ball back. Crazy overtime.

100 calochortus  Thu, Nov 22, 2012 1:27:54pm

re: #93 Jolo5309

Almost all humans feel guilt. It is not something imposed by religion. This guy would presumably feel guilty even if he were an atheist. In this case, his religion is helping him cope with it. That's probably a good thing. In any event, it's really none of my business.

Just one atheist's opinion.

101 researchok  Thu, Nov 22, 2012 1:30:27pm

re: #98 Inconsequential Consequence

Religious people are not perfect, of course.

But being less thna perfect is the human condition.

Id some people need religion as a guide, well, that isn't a bad thing, IMO.

102 allegro  Thu, Nov 22, 2012 1:30:39pm

re: #99 Eventual Carrion

Wow, Detroit just took the ball back. Crazy overtime.

Detroit is gonna win it by a FG. Righteous win. Great game.

103 Killgore Trout  Thu, Nov 22, 2012 1:31:04pm

Israel says it arrests Tel Aviv bus bomber

Israeli authorities arrested an Arab Israeli on Thursday on accusations he planted a bomb on a bus in Tel Aviv that wounded 27 people and threatened to sabotage efforts to broker a cease-fire to end the fighting in Gaza, police said.

Police spokesman Micky Rosenfeld said the man, from the village of Taybeh in Israel, was connected to the Hamas and Islamic Jihad militant groups.

A Palestinian militant cell based in the West Bank village of Beit Lakiya sent the man to put a bomb connected to a mobile phone on the Tel Aviv bus Wednesday, Rosenfeld said.

After he planted the bomb, the man, who police declined to identify, left the bus and called his handlers, who remotely detonated the explosive by calling the phone, he said.

‘‘He admitted to carrying out the terrorist attack,’’ Rosenfeld said.

104 Jolo5309  Thu, Nov 22, 2012 1:32:12pm

re: #96 researchok

How did religion poison his life?

Simply because it did- in your opinion?

He spends time feeling his life is not worth living because he "made the Lord angry"

Do you really believe only religious people are wracked with guilt over behaviors they are ashamed of?

Heck no, but non religious people do not have to spend time feeling their life is not worth living because they made some possibly fictional being angry.

Lastly, no where did I say or even remotely imply good works mitigate evil.

Then why bring up good things religious organisations do?

However, since you brought it up let me ask you- do you believe those who profess no faith cannot be evil?

Of course they can, we can all be evil, and we can all be good but atheists do not use their religion as a screen to hide behind their wrong doing. I suppose they can, but they are delusional.

105 Eventual Carrion  Thu, Nov 22, 2012 1:32:44pm

re: #102 allegro

Detroit is gonna win it by a FG. Righteous win. Great game.

Kick no good. Could end in tie.

106 allegro  Thu, Nov 22, 2012 1:32:59pm

re: #102 allegro

Detroit is gonna win it by a FG. Righteous win. Great game.

Neverrrrrr mind. Jeez, this is a crazy OT.

107 Jolo5309  Thu, Nov 22, 2012 1:33:12pm

re: #100 calochortus

Almost all humans feel guilt. It is not something imposed by religion. This guy would presumably feel guilty even if he were an atheist. In this case, his religion is helping him cope with it. That's probably a good thing. In any event, it's really none of my business.

Just one atheist's opinion.

His religion exacerbates it, how can you not see this?

108 b_sharp  Thu, Nov 22, 2012 1:33:24pm

re: #100 calochortus

Almost all humans feel guilt. It is not something imposed by religion. This guy would presumably feel guilty even if he were an atheist. In this case, his religion is helping him cope with it. That's probably a good thing. In any event, it's really none of my business.

Just one atheist's opinion.

Jolo is concerned that the fellow may be feeling guilty about something he shouldn't feel guilty about. I agree with that, but it isn't the person we should be condemning but the entity deciding what is and what isn't an action that requires guilt.

I also agree that religions can make some pretty stupid 'laws' and are far too rigid in their demands the laws be followed.

109 Jolo5309  Thu, Nov 22, 2012 1:36:03pm

re: #108 Inconsequential Consequence

Jolo is concerned that the fellow may be feeling guilty about something he shouldn't feel guilty about. I agree with that, but it isn't the person we should be condemning but the entity deciding what is and what isn't an action that requires guilt.

I also agree that religions can make some pretty stupid 'laws' and are far too rigid in their demands the laws be followed.

Exactly!

110 researchok  Thu, Nov 22, 2012 1:37:46pm

re: #104 Jolo5309

He spends time feeling his life is not worth living because he "made the Lord angry"

There are people who spend a lifetime in misery because they believe they disappointed someone.

Heck no, but non religious people do not have to spend time feeling their life is not worth living because they made some possibly fictional being angry.

But it's perfectly OK to feel miserable if they made someone here on earth miserable. Right

Then why bring up good things religious organisations do?

Because you said religion poisons everything.

It does not.

As for your last remark, that is very true. Non believers can be just as evil as believers.

As far as I am concerned it all boils down to what was noted earlier: It is behaviors, not beliefs that are the measure of man,

111 researchok  Thu, Nov 22, 2012 1:39:35pm

re: #108 Inconsequential Consequence

The vast majority of the faithful are non orthodox in their beliefs.

112 calochortus  Thu, Nov 22, 2012 1:50:35pm

re: #107 Jolo5309

His religion exacerbates it, how can you not see this?

I don't see it because we have no evidence that it is true. It could be. But he may also be using a conventional claim of sinning against God to express his personal guilt. I've made some "transgressions" over the years, fortunately pretty minor ones, but I still feel bad when I think about the stupid, cruel remark I made to someone when I was 12 or 13. It's human nature.

If this guy uses his religion to deal with something he feels bad about, I'm not going to judge him. If he feels bad because he skipped church or wore clothing made of a linen/wool blend-in other words, violated a strictly religious rule without a real-world consequence, or if we knew his religious belief intensified his guilt, then I'd agree with you.

113 calochortus  Thu, Nov 22, 2012 1:51:24pm

re: #108 Inconsequential Consequence

Jolo is concerned that the fellow may be feeling guilty about something he shouldn't feel guilty about. I agree with that, but it isn't the person we should be condemning but the entity deciding what is and what isn't an action that requires guilt.

I also agree that religions can make some pretty stupid 'laws' and are far too rigid in their demands the laws be followed.

I'd agree with that, but that we don't know it's the case here.

114 Jolo5309  Thu, Nov 22, 2012 1:52:22pm

re: #112 calochortus

I don't see it because we have no evidence that it is true. It could be. But he may also be using a conventional claim of sinning against God to express his personal guilt. I've made some "transgressions" over the years, fortunately pretty minor ones, but I still feel bad when I think about the stupid, cruel remark I made to someone when I was 12 or 13. It's human nature.

If this guy uses his religion to deal with something he feels bad about, I'm not going to judge him. If he feels bad because he skipped church or wore clothing made of a linen/wool blend-in other words, violated a strictly religious rule without a real-world consequence, or if we knew his religious belief intensified his guilt, then I'd agree with you.

From the original article

He said years ago he’d done something bad that he felt “made the Lord angry”, and while he’d tried to make up for it and never repeated the mistake, he often felt like his life just wasn’t worth living.

115 Jolo5309  Thu, Nov 22, 2012 1:56:36pm

re: #110 researchok

There are people who spend a lifetime in misery because they believe they disappointed someone.

But it's perfectly OK to feel miserable if they made someone here on earth miserable. Right

Because you said religion poisons everything.

It does not.

As for your last remark, that is very true. Non believers can be just as evil as believers.

As far as I am concerned it all boils down to what was noted earlier: It is behaviors, not beliefs that are the measure of man,

I am afraid I am at a loss, I cannot think of any other way of explaining to you that this guy has been punishing himself (for years!) over something that may be totally inconsequential because he thinks his (probably non-existent) deity is angry.

116 calochortus  Thu, Nov 22, 2012 1:56:55pm

re: #114 Jolo5309

From the original article

Yes, but my point is that we don't know that he would feel any better if he didn't believe in God, but felt that he had committed an unfair or immoral act. He may just be attributing his own feelings to God. People do.

117 Jolo5309  Thu, Nov 22, 2012 1:58:28pm

re: #116 calochortus

Yes, but my point is that we don't know that he would feel any better if he didn't believe in God, but felt that he had committed an unfair or immoral act. He may just be attributing his own feelings to God. People do.

Without religion he may have had a chance to work through them, but he’d done something bad that he felt “made the Lord angry”, so he has no hope of working through his issues.

118 CuriousLurker  Thu, Nov 22, 2012 2:03:03pm

re: #89 Interesting Times

It may have been freetoken on one of these creationism threads:

[Link: littlegreenfootballs.com...]

[Link: littlegreenfootballs.com...]

[Link: littlegreenfootballs.com...]

I found it! It was Obdi and it was in the Pages. Thanks for prodding me!

There is strong evidence that belief in god stems from humans' pattern-matching ability; the same capacity that allows us leaps of logic, that allows us to conceptualize about things that don't exist yet or can't immediately be proved leads to belief in god and the supernatural, as well.

It's not likely it can be gotten rid of. Even among supposed atheists, you'll find a lot who believe in 'luck' or some other supernatural belief.

What can happen, what is relatively easy, is to convince people that where religion and science differ, the religion is at fault. [...]

I may vehemently disagree with some here, but the (civil) discussions never fail to make me think.

119 calochortus  Thu, Nov 22, 2012 2:05:59pm

re: #117 Jolo5309

You could be right, but as I said, you could also be wrong. We have no evidence to support either side, which makes this a somewhat pointless discussion. (And I don't intend that to sound dismissive-I just think we've exhausted our actual knowledge of the situation.)

So on that note, I'm going to wish you and everyone a very pleasant Thanksgiving and go make stuffing so I can put our turkey in the oven.

120 TedStriker  Thu, Nov 22, 2012 2:43:06pm

re: #6 SpikeDad

C_L relays a tale of someone doing the right thing and you want to get cynical?

Really?

121 Obdicut  Thu, Nov 22, 2012 5:29:00pm

re: #60 CuriousLurker

What was that thing you said yesterday (at least I think it was you) about patterns and conceptualizing? I didn't bookmark it, unfortunately, but I thought it was interesting.

Yeah, it's cool. It's a good way to help angry atheists become serene atheists.

122 bigmacha  Thu, Nov 22, 2012 6:30:36pm

Mark twain said it best:



“Kindness is a language which the deaf can hear and the and the blind can see”


Your story made my day/night.

Happy thanksgiving

123 wheat-dogghazi  Thu, Nov 22, 2012 9:07:29pm

Someone here quoted this recently, and it seems appropriate for this thread, too.

Preach the gospel at all times. Only if necessary use words.
- St. Francis of Assisi.

It goes without saying that in many parts of the world -- Newark, even -- the chances of someone returning a lost cellphone are maybe 50-50. But there are many honest people who feels its their duty to return a lost item, even it can be hocked for real cash.

This old guy, regardless of his motivations, was doing what his religion says is the right thing to do. Maybe he could have left out telling CL why he did it, but he could also be one of those many old guys who just plain lonely and want to talk to anyone who will listen.

Meanwhile, CL is doing what her religion says is the right thing to do. She walked the extra mile* to extend to this old duffer her friendship.

Two people doing what we all ought to do, regardless of our religion or lack thereof. Be kind to one another -- All the rest is commentary.

* From Matthew 5:41. Probably the Qu'ran has a similar thought.

124 CuriousLurker  Thu, Nov 22, 2012 11:06:24pm

re: #122 bigmacha

Mark twain said it best:

“Kindness is a language which the deaf can hear and the and the blind can see”

Love this, it's a keeper. Thank you.

re: #123 wheat-dogghazi

Preach the gospel at all times. Only if necessary use words. - St. Francis of Assisi.

Love this too, another keeper.

Two people doing what we all ought to do, regardless of our religion or lack thereof. Be kind to one another -- All the rest is commentary.

* From Matthew 5:41. Probably the Qu'ran has a similar thought.

QFT. Thank you.

125 CuriousLurker  Thu, Nov 22, 2012 11:08:17pm

re: #121 Obdicut

Yeah, it's cool. It's a good way to help angry atheists become serene atheists.

You rock. ;)

126 boredtechindenver  Fri, Nov 23, 2012 1:32:35am

re: #123 wheat-dogghazi

Two people doing what we all ought to do, regardless of our religion or lack thereof. Be kind to one another -- All the rest is commentary.

As far as I am concerned, these two sentences should be the foundation of religion.


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How Islamic extremists convinced two French schoolgirls to join jihad in Syria
Sahra and Nora are among some 100 girls and young women from France who have left to join jihad in Syria, up from just a handful 18 months ago, when the trip was not even on Europe's security radar, ...

1 week, 4 days ago
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 Frank says:

Drop out of school, before your mind rots from exposure to our mediocre educational system. Go to the library and educate yourself if you've got any guts... -- Quoted from an article on FZ in the June 1995 issue of "SLUG" magazine. Article titled "Zappa behind the Sneer. I think the magazine may be a local (Salt Lake City) publication.