It started here. And it caused such a reaction the post was taken down from the front page. But not before it was brought up at LivingRoom and John Adams.
I think it is great that young people are exploring their place in their world and our world, and using blogging. And I firmly believe they deserve lots of room to do that.

Blogging has really helped the traders, especially the newbies in this field to start their venture here in this trading field with the best trading applications. Bitcoin is one such very reliable software and more info about this application or software can be collected by visiting the official website of this system.

It is probably because of this that people are becoming more aware and are well-informed about what they have to do and what they are not. Now, this blogging has also helped in bringing out the real intentions of trading systems like the Q profit system and this has greatly benefitted the traders.

What bothered me wasn’t the topic as much as the labels, bible thumping and flaming. Follow the links and the comment sections. Take some deep breaths, you’ll see a sand box fight with a bunch of angry guys. Can you blame others for their response?
Ask yourself this:
Why did the adults responding behave like teen-agers? It is one thing for a 17 year old American to spit out the cultural garbage he is surrounded by, it is quite another for older ones to jump right in with both feet and a bad attitude.

After you have followed this thread, go to connexions and read the two part response.
Then go to looking back…looking forward and read the response. These two bloggers and LivingRoom are labelled as ‘liberals’ by some of their American counterparts.
(If I missed some links, let me know, I’ll be happy to add your voice.)
And ask yourself this also…..if you responded to a 17 year old boy sorting out his identity, who would you model yourself after in this discussion?
The first thing I want to try to understand is why the men got so angry.
Looking back…looking forward wonders too.
Maybe some of the boys and men involved in this conversation can answer him.

Strongbad
Wired News has an interesting interview with the creators of Strongbad. I stumbled on the site about a year ago, and I find it funny. Some of my friends don’t get it though. It looks like this family project will keep going for awhile.

Hello techies…
Most of us won’t understand this, but it looks like a new format has been developed for weblogs that replaces (or is better than?) RSS feeds. I guess it does a lot of the same things like weblog syndication, archiving, and editing.

Comment spam
Have you noticed any comment spam on your weblog? I get some occasionally. So, what can we do about it? Spammers seem unable to comprehend we aren’t interested, and in deleting the junk, I’ve probably deleted what could be legitimate stuff.

Top Honours
Congratulations Rachel! Get well soon.

26 Responses to “The latest flame war

  1. Gravatar Icon1Chris A.  

    I’ve discussed this and similar threads with friends in real life lately. It’s clear that homosexuality triggers extreme emotions in people, especially in men. I simply don’t see the reason for it. We’re told, as Christians, to hate the sin and love the sinner. We’re told to include and love and embrace all sorts of people. We really seem to have little trouble when that person is abusive, or an alcoholic, or embezzles money. We ignore plenty of other Biblically mandated laws; when was the last time we stoned someone for missing the sabbath?

    Yet, for a complex of social and political and religious reasons, it seems like homosexuality automatically triggers insensibility in people. There’s no insult one can sling that’s more effective that to imply a man is gay. It makes me sick. Personally, I believe it’s time to re-evaluate all of our assumptions about homosexuality in light of increased understanding of the value of gay and lesbian relationships, but how can that happen when firestorms like the one mentioned can start at a moment’s notice.

  2. Gravatar Icon2Jared WIlliams  

    Good questions Bene–The ugliness of suspician and the quest for being right rather than good. [sigh] I could only read about 10 comments through the original post before my exasperation sapped my will to read on.

    It’s good to reflect on our childish immaturity and squabbling in spaces like this–we can learn much from our own regret before family. God forbid we act so foolishly in public.

  3. Gravatar Icon3Pieter Friedrich  

    Chris, when you say “the value of gay and lesbian relationships” do you mean the value of relationships with gays and lesbians or do you mean the value of relationships between gay and lesbian couples?

    If the latter, then how can those ever be “valuable”? How can what is clearly and unequivocally condemned by God as an “abomination” ever be “valuable”?

  4. Gravatar Icon4Richard B.  

    By being relationships in which two people are loving and respecting each other, in the ways that a guy named Jesus called us to love and respect one another, Pieter.

    Love and respect. Not easy things to do. Some of us might argue that the loving thing is condemn people with “different” sexual orientations. Some of us might argue that the loving thing is to see them as real live human beings living their lives the best they know how… just like the rest of us.

    Doing well sometimes… falling down at others… just like the rest of us.

    What does God want? I’m not as sure as you seem to be. Yep, there are Levitical laws around same-sex relationships that call for death. There are also Levitical laws around cursing one’s parents that call for death. Yep, some of the epistles also speak against sexual practices that were part of the life of the wider culture.

    But, as the phrase goes, WWJD?

  5. Gravatar Icon5Pieter Friedrich  

    Just so I’m clear here…

    What you’re saying is that it’s more important to love one another than it is to follow God’s law? If a homosexual couple are together and loving each other, that’s much better and more valuable than single people who obey God’s law, but don’t love other people by overlooking the sin of others?

  6. Gravatar Icon6Chris A.  

    What I’m saying is that to love one another *is* God’s law, and is far more important that any of the other laws laid out. What I’m also saying is that I have known and do know gay and lesbian couples that are more aware of the power of eros, philia, and agape than many straight Christians. I’m not a pharisee.

  7. Gravatar Icon7Pieter Friedrich  

    Where do you get the idea that “love” is more important than God’s “other law”?

  8. Gravatar Icon8Richard B.  

    I’m not sure that either is *more* valuable, Pieter. *Both* are valuable.

    “Hearing that Jesus had silenced the Sadducees, the Pharisees got together. One of them, an expert in the law, tested him with this question:
    ‘Teacher, which is the greatest commandment in the Law?’ Jesus replied: ‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.’ This is the first and greatest commandment. And the second is like it: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ All the Law and the Prophets hang on these two commandments.” (Mt. 22.34-40, NIV)

    For *me*, this means that the Law and the Prophets (and my life, too) need to be held up to these commandments. Soooo… God’s law (or the understanding of God’s law that the ancient Levitical community had) called the the followers to kill anyone who curses his father or mother (Lev 20.9). How does this “law” hang on the commandments Jesus re-iterated?

    I believe that there are ways of asking people to consider their lives – be it around sexuality (straight or gay/lesbian/bi), or about the use of wealth or power, or anything else for that matter – that are loving in the way that Christ called for.

    The two of us will probably never agree about the place of homosexuality in God’s creation. But that’s ok. I believe that our task, as children of God and followers of the Christ, is to challenge each other, in that love that He talked about.

    Blessings and peace.

    (Ack! I let this comment become a full-fledged post… sorry Bene!)

  9. Gravatar Icon9Pieter Friedrich  

    What is your definition of “love”? I mean, the love that Jesus speaks of in the Greatest Commandment.

  10. Gravatar Icon10Richard B.  

    Interesting question, Pieter.

    Its… hmmm… I just realized that I’ve written two really long posts in Bene’s comments section, so I’ve decided to post my thoughts about love at http://richard.peacefulwaters.org/index.php?m=200306#95604998

  11. Gravatar Icon11Jonathan  

    Pieter, what are you trying to do? This battle has been fought by you in the comments of countless blogs so far. There are people who do not agree with you. There are people you do not agree with. Many of you may never agree with each other.

    There is a time and a place for debating such issues. The time…well, seems to me this fight has lasted long enough, beyond the point where anything constructive is going to occur. The place…is definitely not in the comments section of any blog that touches on the issue. If you want to continue this fight, maybe you should choose a designated forum on your own website where people who are still interested in debating this with you can come to do so. It is not fair to others such as Bene to take over their comments with your crusade.

    Pieter, in all honesty, you will not change anyone’s opinion on this issue. And it looks like no-one will change yours. Sometimes we have to learn to accept that not everybody sees things our way. Unfortunately, many people don’t seem to learn this important lesson until much later in life. You’re seventeen, and have the opportunity to deal with this and become a better person while you’re still young.

    God bless you Pieter, and may you continue to seek Truth with the same passion that you have displayed in engaging this issue. And please do no ask me to fight this issue with you; I disagree with you, but don’t intend to quarrel about it. Certainly not in Bene’s comment section.

    Pax!

  12. Gravatar Icon12Chris A.  

    In other news, I’m skeptical about a new alternative to RSS for blog syndication. Mostly, I’m afraid of the too-many-cooks possibility in a standard like this.

  13. Gravatar Icon13Jonathan  

    Definitely, Chris. I say, pick a standard and stick to it so we don’t have to provide 20 different flavors of each and every web service. The Wired article on Homestar Runner was cool too.

  14. Gravatar Icon14Chris A.  

    Wait, let’s talk about how Strongbad and Homestar love The Cheat even though he’s gay.

  15. Gravatar Icon15Bene Diction  

    Thank you gentlemen, and Pieter, I commend you for speaking to me and my readers with respect. I am pleased to see you were treated well here, while I was out and about with a buddy this afternoon.

    Most people don’t always debate to win. I was genuinely sorry you were flamed Pieter and that you flamed. It was emotionally wearing to wade through, and I hope this comment section was a safe harbour.

    As for the new RSS type thing….yeah, we got enough ingredients to maintain our blogs. Arrggghh. It’s a wait and see thing. Blog on!

  16. Gravatar Icon16Darren  

    Cant post much now as I’m about to hit the road again – I’m sorry if my post or comments come across as angry – I’m not sure anger is the emotion I feel – rather its a frustration.

    The part of Pieter’s post that frustrated me most actually wasn’t his homophobia, it was his Islamaphobia. This partly comes out of the fact that over the last few years I’ve been working with Muslims and would class some of them as growing friends.

    Comments like Pieters get made here in Australia from time to time in the media – and I know the impact that they have upon my friends. They often cut right to the bone and make them very suspicious of Christianity.

    I only posted about the topic because I felt people should talk about this issue as I think its something that can get in the way of us getting on with the mission we’ve been left of loving our world and making disciples.

    would like to post more – but have to run.

  17. Gravatar Icon17Bene Diction  

    Hey Darren: It’s ok….kind of got the message from your posts that you’ve been on the run. Take care of yourself eh?
    I think this is called community, gathering around a high maintenence 17 year old who is learning his remarks echo ’round the globe. I know people were wounded. Blog on!

  18. Gravatar Icon18dan  

    The interesting aspect of this discussion in my mind is the fact that some have focussed on Pieter’s youth as a consideration which should be taken into account when we respond to what he has said.

    I don’t know how true this is. From what little I have read, it doesn’t appear that Pieter would want us to take his youth into account, and perhaps might find these comments condescending (I think I would, in Pieter’s position).

    We all have the capacity to express our beliefs, and to respond and engage in discussion with those with whom we disagree. In the blogosphere and outside of it, this should always be done with respect, both for the other person and for the view that they hold.

    I too have been disappointed by the level of flaming, of inflamatory language and disrespect that sometimes gets shown in the blogosphere. I have also been impressed by those that have responded thoughtfully and spoken into sometimes conflicted situations with grace, insight and with a total lack of defensiveness. We should be aiming to create an environment where we are challenging and inspiring each other. If we cannot do that without resorting to abuse, then we should take no further part in the discussion which is provoking such a reaction in us.

  19. Gravatar Icon19Chris A.  

    One of the things that I value the most about the blogosphere is my opportunity to converse on these issues with so many different people. I know, in real life, incredibly few conservatives, so it’s refreshing to actually get input from people who don’t agree with me. Likewise, I don’t talk to that many Australians, Canadians, New Zealanders, or — really — Americans in my day to day existence. I’m here in Seattle, sure, but I don’t talk to people face to face about all this stuff.

    May God bless us and keep us.

  20. Gravatar Icon20Pieter Friedrich  

    Jonathan: I am not trying to debate. Rather, I am hoping to better understand the viewpoint that talks about the “value of gay and lesbian relationships” while also presenting itself as Christian. It is one I strongly disagree with, but do not fully understand. I am attempting to understand it better, and that is why I asked the questions I did.

    Bene Diction: Thanks for your respectful treatment of me. I am at fault for my flaming, and that cannot be justified, but only, I hope, forgiven. I spoke in anger, and I should not have.

    Dan: I agree. The value of what I say should be weighed, and the response should not be tempered by consideration of my youth.

  21. Gravatar Icon21Bene Diction  

    Hi Dan:

    I am going to disagree with you.

    Pieter probably doesn’t like any one pointing out his age. I will agree on that.
    However, at 17, major things are going on in our brains and our lives….there are developmental considerations whether a 17 year old likes it or not.

    I don’t know if Pieter grasped the consequences of his blog being read around the world, I haven’t asked him.
    I don’t think it is being patronizing to point out cause and effect.
    You and I are used to engaging in world wide conversations Dan.
    And I can hope in engaging Pieter, we are showing respect, and treating him as adult as he can handle.
    It’s up to Pieter to tell us if he has been challenged and inspired, up to us to disengage if there is abuse.

  22. Gravatar Icon22Bene Diction  

    Hi Pieter:
    You are most welcome. I know Richard Bott is more than willing to continue that respect in answering your questions at his blog. :^)

  23. Gravatar Icon23chris  

    Hi Bene,

    Pieter is young and maybe engaging with him will expose him to views and ideas he may not be getting in his peer group.

    I think a number of your commentors missed the point that you were making about mature adults behaving in a equally late adolescent manner in their comments. Peiter is old enough and intelligent enough to present a well reasoned argument and if he does not we should be mature enough to point that out to him with being drawn into responding in kind.

    Sadly, we cannot simply write off his views as adolescent inexperience as there are many adults who are well past 17 who share his views. However, the fact that he is prepared to engage is a positive sign in itself.

    To end on a lighter note, it amuses me with all this reference in to liberals in posts such as these. The current government in Australia is the “Liberal” party and they are about as far to the right as we have had.

  24. Gravatar Icon24Bene Diction  

    Hi Chris: Yeah…

    “Pieter is young and maybe engaging with him will expose him to views and ideas he may not be getting in his peer group.”

    I thank you for helping to doing that, and you are correct:

    “there are many adults who are well past 17 who share his views. However, the fact that he is prepared to engage is a positive sign in itself.”

    I’m joyful adults engaged today; mature, kind, respectful. What blogging can be.

    Chris, Jordon Cooper has a post on Seattle home churches you might want to look at. Blog on!

  25. Gravatar Icon25Mark Byron  

    Two definitions of liberal, Chris. With a small l in a 19th century application, it meant taking power away from the aristrocary and giving it to the people; that makes them 21st century conservatives, unlike the people who want to take power from people and give it to the government, which is what we call liberals in North America. PM Howard is a 19th century (or classic) liberal.

    Other than one comment over at John Adams’ blog, I’ve stayed out of this one. The key is speaking the truth in love so that the person you’re rebuking will be more inclined to listen and change. The rhetorical bomb-throwers get more press, but wind up only preaching to their choirs.

    So often, the cliche becomes “hate the sin, hold your nose and be civil the sinner.” Let’s guard against that.

  26. Gravatar Icon26Bene Diction  

    Mark:

    I’m glad you can clarify the term ‘liberal’ and you bring up another issue. Too many bloggers throw labels around without understanding their meaning. I put liberal in quotes precisely for that reason. We internationals have been labelled all kinds of things….without the thought and awareness you put into this comment. It’s frustrating for many of us no matter where we live.

    The bottom line is not complex…those of us that don’t pledge alliance to your flag are first and foremost your brothers in Christ living under different government systems. It does not make us anti, less than, or fitting well into some of the US political labels. Nor do we get the opportunity we’d like to engage when we are dismissed by definition so easily.

    Thanks. There are few pundit bloggers outside the US, and this might make a post for you since you are widely read eh? Blog on!