Linked outta Two–Four.
I’m sure it’s many things, and perhaps one small portion will serve the diplomatic function customarily understood by anyone to be that of an embassy.
But on the whole? This is not an embassy. Occupation Headquarters, perhaps. Not an embassy.
I had intended to just ignore the whole U.S. Senator Larry Craig affair. I mean, really. The absurdity of the people of a nation spending time on the "horror" of a guy trying to effect a pickup for sex is just ludicrous. And I must say that this is a source of one of my deepest admirations for the French. This sort of crap just doesn’t play over there — at least not in the early 90s; but, you know: we’ve got globalization now, so who knows? It may have changed. Il ne fait pas mon affaire — it’s not my business — but with the addition of the verb falloir — "to make, or to be necessary" — thus the fact that it’s subjectively offensive, "illegal," or whatever, doesn’t necessarily make it yours or anyone’s business. The French are big on that, and I always appreciated it. (Now if ever they’d just apply that same standard to what other people produce, for whom, and under what conditions and compensation…)
On the other hand, it’s really sweet to observe a pathetic hypocrite like this guy get it right up the butt — so to speak — on the very same sort of "family values" crap he champions.
Goal Three: Defend and strengthen the traditional values of the American family.
Now, it shouldn’t take a lot of deep reflection to understand that when a lawman wants to "strengthen" something, it means bringing to bear the force of the state against whatever is whimsically defined as counter or derogatory to that which is the subject of being "strengthened," which in this case is the undefined "traditional values" of the equally undefined "American family."
Going through email yesterday, I noted one sent to the distribution list for our condo association by one of the residents. He and his wife are both graduates of Harvard Divinity and are both local ministers — he of a non-denominational Christian church, and she of a Unitarian church. I think they’re fabulous people and I always enjoy talking with them.
In his tag line to his email was this simple quote.
"Religion is meant to provide deep reflection, not easy certainty."
Amen to that! As an atheist, I can understand it completely; I get it, if that’s your thing. And you know what? If I looked around America and saw religion primarily about that, then I’d likely just shut my mouth about it altogether.
It’s not the primitive, silly notion that there exists some literal anthropomorphic being who mets out rewards and punishments. It’s an effort to understand humanity beyond the pure material. Yes, I think there are better ways of doing that than consulting ancient texts written by tribesmen and sheepherders; but whatever, I guess. It’s not like I necessarily doubt theirs or anyone’s capacity to recognize a conscience within themselves and seek to understand it and reduce it to moral principles.
To focus on the literal is to completely miss the point — to completely miss any value that might be contained therein. It’s about poetry, metaphor, narrative, and parable; and in that regard I’ve never disputed the value of it. Just the other day, for instance, I was telling a friend that I’ve never doubted the ancient wisdom that, in the proper circumstances, "it is more blessed to give that to receive." I believe that and more, but I don’t need literal ghosts, human sacrifices — in all their earthy manifestations — heavens, or hells in order to do so.