Sunday, August 31, 2008


Some religious folks are recognizing that they've been played

I am confident that Mrs. Palin is a delightful, sincere, thoughtful, and capable woman with many commendable virtues. But in fairness, there is nothing “traditional” about mothers of young children becoming career moms, chief magistrates, and leading nations of three hundred million, nor is this pattern the biblical ideal to which young women should aspire. At a time when motherhood and marriage is so under attack, the message Republicans are sending is this: Winning political elections is more important than the following proposition given by the Lord: “That they may teach the young women to be sober, to love their husbands, to love their children, [To be] discreet, chaste, keepers at home, good, obedient to their own husbands, that the word of God be not blasphemed” (Titus 2:4-5).

Would that my peeps realize that being props for a political party is a betrayal of everything their faith asks of them. But in a culture where rational thought is frowned upon one can only hope.

Thursday, August 28, 2008

feed back

you do cuss a lot. maybe it feels like it adds
weight to your points. in
fact the opposite is true, especially in
print. to the reader it feels like
just so much off-gassing. the
commentors are right that it has more to do
with your issues than
"the amish and us".

you're angry, elam. who
are you really angry at

"cranky expatriot"

So with a little therapy everything will be okay? Fuck you "expatriot"! Genteel language and even handedness in the face of injustice is the refuge of those who don't want to fess up to what 's going on. If you really think I'm full of hot air, why don't you engage me on the issues instead of patronizingly dismissing me? Tell me, if a heavily armed and disturbed person has taken your child hostage, do you want the police to pound on the door of the room they are in? What possible good can come from our public servants operating by a different set of rules when they are dealing with a certain part of the population?
The police response to the Nickel Mines school shooting isn't the Amish peoples' problem. It's up to the government and its' citizens who commissioned those officers to determine whether they performed according to the expectations and protocols that have been established to regulate them. If that doesn't happen, it sets a clear precedent, ( even if it turns out the police performed appropriately, but we'll never know, will we?) that the Amish aren't important enough for us to bother to live up to our own values. If an event as big as the Nickel Mines school shooting can be swept under the carpet, what else is happening in which the Amish are being treated like second class citizens?

Sunday, August 24, 2008

equal under the law?

Kerosene recall raises questions about Amish woman's death

The fire was ruled accidental and New Wilmington police Chief Carmen Piccirillo said Thursday after learning of the recall he still maintains that ruling.

Nobody's making an allegation of any criminal activity,” he said. “This really isn't a police matter. None of it is.”

Some one died! Possibly because of a wrongly labeled product and there is no criminal investigation? What! Someone is just going to come forward and say, "Whoops, my bad!"

It would serve us well to keep in mind that we don't know how William Penn's experiment is going to work out in the long run. Unquestionably the citizens of our nation live under two different sets of rules. How is that going to work? Maybe a criminal prosecution isn't of essence in every case, but who will decide? And what happens once someone discovers that this is a situation that can be exploited? (stayed tuned!)

oey vey!

Sometimes you're up, sometimes you're down! So LNP ran a letter to the editor in which the writer referred to the two men who shot eighty dogs as "savages"! Ya know, what they did was brutish. But I think savages is more than a little over the line! There are shades of grey in this issue. Our dietary habits require the slaughter of animals and Americans embrace and idolize the use of cars for transportation which is responsible for the maiming and killing of countless animals. Who among us is going to give up their cars for the sake of protecting animals? By the way, more than a few of those animals getting run over by cars are someones pet!
It's not like they choose to randomly kill animals for their own perverse enjoyment. Would LNP run a letter that referred to the soldiers who carried out this mission as savages? I don't think they would, but like I said before, when it comes to the Amish it just fucking doesn't matter!

I don't in any way condone what they did. I do think the greater wrong for them personally is that they were well aware of how callous their actions were and they did it anyway, in spite of how it would play out in the larger culture. Their defiance is a hideous assault on what there faith asks of them.

The last thing they should be engaging in is a defiant critique of the larger society, but I do wonder whether they aren't right, (if as I'm suggesting, their actions were the equivalent of "fuck off! and don't tell us how to live our lives") however boorish and inappropriate their behavior was, our behavior may in fact not leave us with a leg to stand on when it comes to criticizing theirs.

Monday, August 18, 2008

Words of wisdom

Crockhead's aunt Tillie checks in

But I think our bishops are going to have to get together and talk about
whether allowing members of our churches to have puppy mills isn't more sinful
than allowing them to have colorful clothing.

Saturday, August 16, 2008

Flames lapping higher

This should turn the heat up a notch!

Under a full moon, more than 100 people gathered on a country road here
Friday night for a somber candlelight vigil to remember 80 dogs shot to death by
two Amish farmers late last month.


Author, psychologist and animal welfare advocate Jana Kohl has vowed to
wage war on Pennsylvania's Amish tourism industry by exposing inhumane treatment of breeder dogs by the Amish and Mennonite communities.


"A lot of people with a lot of money and resources are prepared to venture
into a campaign like this," she said. "It's going to be a bigger and more
embarrassing campaign than people expect, and it's going to shock."

What a train wreck! The plain community is profoundly dependent on the goodwill of the larger society for the peaceful and mutually beneficial co-existence that they currently enjoy! Their failure to get this monkey off their back reveals an epic flaw in the viability of their social structure. Think about it; plain community doctrine demands, and receives unquestioned fealty from it's adherents over mundane issues like the width of their hat brims. Shouldn't they be able to recognize that this issue needs a remedy and bring their famed communal strengths to a solution?

Sunday, August 10, 2008


If this is supposed to represent nuanced and intelligent dialogue. (He apparently fancies himself as an unofficial spokesperson for the Amish.)

The intellectual incoherence of his positions are almost too numerous to mention, but I'll try.

1. Using language that evokes physical violence (cut a gash) is unbecoming for a pacifist.

2. I agree that someone is going to burn in hell over the financial structure of our health care system, (that is, if there is such a thing as hell, and in this case I'm hoping there is!) but the separate and apart dictum embraced by the Amish precludes involvement, so unless he wants to sink or swim with the rest of us he needs to sit the hell down and shut the fuck up! Not to mention, the critique he is engaging in isn't tolerated in his own community, so if he believes in criticism why the fuck doesn't he advocate and promote it in his own community?

3. There's an adversarial tone of thinly veiled threats one might expect from a political lobbyist or a corporate litigator,

Surely the Plain folks gave the Lancaster County tourist industry a
substantial amount of business. For more than 70 years, the Plain lifestyle
seemed to be one of the county's main attractions. And just suppose all the
Plain folks hooked up to the electric grid. Eastern Lancaster County might
experience a mini blackout. Suppose we unhitched all the horse and buggies and
horse-drawn farm equipment and depended on fuel power instead of oats: Maybe gas prices would go up much more.

Consider if the Plain folks would decide to send their students to public
schools. School taxes would go through the roof.

how can that tone be reconciled with the "strangers in a foreign land" posture Amish faith demands?

4. If it's so awful for Amish folks to have their name in the paper, why the hell is his name in the paper?

To the extent that this guy represents Amish leadership or is condoned and given free rein by Amish leaders, his writings under score what I've been saying here for sometime, that there's going to be social discord between "the Amish and us". Meanwhile the folks who could be educating us on the issues that will need to be addressed are still portraying the Amish as this cute amusement, unworthy of serious dialogue.