Friday, April 30, 2010

Good Stuff

Painstakingly copy & pasted from Fox News.

Do to others whatever you would have them do to you. This is the law of the prophets. Matthew 7:12

This past week the creators of Comedy Central's edgy cartoon series "South Park," wrestled, as they have in the past, with their network over their depiction of the Prophet Muhammad on their show. Why? Because the 200th episode of the show included a caricature of Muhammad disguised in a bear suit. Muslims do not allow Muhammad to be represented as an image, and they consider it a great insult when someone does it.

When a non-believer shows Muhammad as an image, extremists have been known to resort to revenge murder. When 12 cartoons depicting Muhammad appeared in the Danish newspaper Jyllands-Posten, worldwide protests ensued. The result was shooting deaths and the burning of Danish embassies. One of the artists, Kurt Westergaard, has had to fend off at least two murder attempts since the publication of his drawing.

A radical Muslim group last week suggested that "South Park" creators Trey Parker and Matt Stone may end up like Theo Van Gogh, a newspaper columnist and movie maker gruesomely murdered on a city street in Amsterdam for his criticism of Islam.

While I condemn the violence and threats, as a Christian I’m obligated to follow the teaching outlined in the book of Matthew. I must at least consider the insult Muslims are feeling when Muhammad is drawn. When I ponder this, I wonder how I would react if the sacred icons of my religion were similarly disrespected (it matters not that I don’t understand how a drawing is disrespectful, it matters to them). I can think of two times in my own lifetime where similar insults happened to Christian images.

In 1999, New York Mayor Rudy Giuliani made news when he cut funding to the Brooklyn Museum after it displayed a painting by the artist (again, I use the term loosely) Chris Ofili. The painting depicted the Blessed Mother Mary surrounded by pornographic images and covered in elephant dung. A judge later reinstated the funding.In 1987 the artist (I use the term loosely) Andres Serrano photographed a crucifix in a bottle of his own urine, and titled it “Piss Christ.” It caused a public uproar, first because of the insulting treatment of the symbol of Christianity and second when it was revealed Serrano received a $15,000 prize, partly from the taxpayer-funded National Endowment of the Arts.

As a Christian I was no less outraged by the disrespect of the symbols I revere than Muslims are when they see any depiction of Muhammad. I find an insult to religion as unnecessary in discourse as they do.

The difference, of course, is that unlike extremists, I’m bound by a religious covenant against violence, a legal covenant against violence and a personal morals covenant against violence. When my religious symbols are disrespected, I suffer the great frustration of not being able to do anything about it. It hurts. Muslim extremists do something about it.

This leads to the question, why should Muslims or I be put in the position of having to do anything about it? The beginning of our inquiry into this problem should not start with what the reactions by the insulted will be. The first inquiry is – what do the folks hurling the insults get out of doing it?

What does it bring to the cartoonist drawing Muhammad or the painter disgracing Mary for them to do those things? I can’t think of a benefit to them or anyone else when those things are done. The hurt and pain to the religious are obvious.

Some will argue the non-sequitur: “They have the freedom of speech to do it.” So what? With freedom comes responsibility. I’m free to say a whole wide mess of things that can insult and hurt people. I don’t. I live in a society with others – and while I’m not going to curb my behavior for subjective claims over arguable insults – when something is widely understood as being hurtful to many, I’m a better person to refrain from doing it. I don’t use racial epithets, and I wouldn’t draw Muhammad or put Christ in a glass of urine. Why not? It would hurt others, and I gain nothing.

One can criticize Islam without drawing a picture of Muhammad. One can criticize Christianity without creating horrid images of Jesus or Mary. The purpose of criticism is persuasion, and not one person has ever been persuaded by being insulted.

I’m certainly not suggesting anything be outlawed. It shouldn’t be. Here’s what I am suggesting:
Fight like hell for the right to draw a picture of Muhammad – then choose not to.

Tommy De Seno is a writer and attorney. Read more at

Friday, April 23, 2010

Friday Freeze Out

--Why freeze out? 'Cause that's what I wanted to say. Big whoop, wanna fight about it?
--I locked the keys in my work truck today and had to break into it, I felt like a real bad ass. People would drive by and stare at me, so I would hit them with the "Yeah, I'm stealing this truck, you got a problem with that? Try to stop me and I'll cut you" look. Yeah, they knew....
--Wendy got me a MacBook Pro for and early Christmas/Anniversary present, now I can play with the cool kids! Ever since we got an iMac, I am a total Apple user. I hate using my PC at work now.
--I've been watching a ton of movies here lately, so rather than review each one, I'll just give them a 1 to 5 star rating.
-The Men Who Stare at Goats - * - (This movie could have been GREAT with the cast, but it just sucked. Hard.)
-Law Abiding Citizen -****
-The Big Lebowski - ***** (I can't believe I had never seen this before, awesome movie.)
-Gamer - *
-Up in the Air - *****
--Next on my list to buy: Avatar and Crazy Heart. I really stoked about Crazy Heart, just because Jeff Bridges is such a great actor.
--In seven weeks I'll be a DAD!!! I really can't believe how fast Wendy's pregnancy has gone, I guess that's just a precursor to how fast Jake is going to grow up.
--After three of the five baby showers, I've come to the conclusion that our families are going to spoil that boy rotten. I have cut tags off so many clothes, washcloth, and bibs it's insane.
--That's all I've got for tonight, have a great weekend everyone!

Calling all Gearheads!

First off, if you don't like working on cars this isn't the post for you. All right guys, I've myself in a bind (literally), and I need HELP! I've tried just about everything I know to do, so I'll take any suggestions. So, here goes...

A long, long time ago, in a land far, far away....Actually, earlier this week, in Bridgeport, I had a customer come in looking for an intake manifold for a 1948 Jeep Willys with a 134 4 cylinder, so I thought no problem and I pull out the handy dandy Dorman catalog. Uh-oh, Dorman doesn't the intake manifold, uh, isn't Dorman supposed to make everything!?!?! So I betray the ways of the old time parts guy and put away the dusty old book, and pull it up on the net, of course I find it at, which I can't buy from due my boss not trusting me with a company credit card, and uh I'm not using my personal credit card.
To make the long story about getting the part short, I picked up a used intake/exhaust manifold assembly from 820 Jeep in Fort Worth, which is a really cool place if your into old Jeeps. The exhaust manifold is cracked, which is no biggie because he doesn't need that part, and they're just bolted together so he can take them apart. Now, I'm not sure if it was boredom, or me just being an extremely nice guy, or just wanting to get my hands dirty, but I decide that I'm gonna take the manifolds apart for the customer, and sandblast it and get it all nice and purrrty.
Here is where the real dilemma begins. There are four little bastards, er bolts, that hold the exhaust and intake manifold assemblies together, I try to take the first one off and immediately round the head off. A minor annoyance, I should have know better but no big deal, so I soak the rounded bolt along with the other three in PB Blaster for a good six hours, I just keep going back and spraying and spraying hoping that the lubricant can get under the bolt head and down the threads. I go back and try the next bolt, with a cheater wrench on the end of the original wrench it busts loose and backs right out. Great! This is gonna work out just fine, right? Wrong. The next bolt loosens after about the same amount of pressure as the second, and comes out, only it didn't come out. The head broke right off the bolt. OOOOOk, that's not as bad as rounding the head off, but this is still going to SUCK.
So, I spray some more Blaster on the final bolt and go back a few hours later ready to take it out. I put the pressure on it and snap, it breaks too! In case you lost count, that's two bolts broken clean off, one with a rounded head and one that came out without a hitch. The flange where manifolds come together is only threaded in the exhaust, so I get a cut-off wheel and take of the head of the rounded bolt and separate the assemblies. Now I'm getting a little cocky thinking that I've got this under control, I'll just get a stud remover, bite down on 'em and pop these bad boys out. Nope. Instead these little bastards BREAK THE STUD REMOVER. Ok, ok, Plan B, or C, or D, or wherever the Hell we're at now: EZ Out. I go up to the front, get some cobalt drill bits and drill the studs/broken bolts out, which was waaaay to easy, and put the EZ Out in and start twisting. What happens? You guessed it, the EZ Out snaps, I actually snapped two of them on these things, a spiral and a square design.
This is where I need help, I've tried everything I can thing short of heating it with a torch because I don't have one readily available, but that might be the only option Do any of you guys have any suggestions? I'm getting desperate!

Friday, April 9, 2010

'Atta Boy

Newest Sono Pics of Jake

Funny Stuff #2

Thanks again to WonsAndZeros

Funny Stuff

H/T WonsAndZeros
--31 weeks as of Tuesdsay! 9 more and I'll be a Dad!

--I can't believe just how fast Wendy's pregnancy has gone, it seems like just last week we had the first Dr. appointment. I guess it's just a precursor to how fast Jake will grow up.

--I haven't been in much a writing mood at all here lately, not a bad mood, just not a blogging mood.

--I've let my yard get out of control, the previous spent a ton of money on the landscaping and I've completely let it go, I guess I just didn't get my Dad's green thumb. This weekend I'm going to try to change that though, I've recruited my little brother-in-laws and were gonna pull some weeds, cut some grass, spread some mulch, and plant some shrubs. Either that or they'll do it and be around for moral support, gotta mold those young minds, ya know.

--Anyway, after several trips to Lowe's, we should be ready to get started this afternoon, wish me luck...

--So, it turns out that if you have a dog that likes to chew, along with your AC unit in the back yard, bad things will happen. Like the little bastard chewing through the wires and causing you to have AC repairman come out to add freon, only to find out he chewed the wires and popped a fuse.

--I don't have a dog anymore.

--Congratulations to Sili on BabyAlley #2!