user

Peterr

About Me:
I'm an ordained Lutheran pastor with a passion for language, progressive politics, and the intersection of people's inner sets of ideals and beliefs (aka "faith" to many) and their political actions. I mostly comment around here, but offer a weekly post or two as well. With the role that conservative Christianity plays in the current Republican politics, I believe that progressives ignore the dynamics of religion, religious language, and religiously-inspired actions at our own peril. I am also incensed at what the TheoCons have done to the public impression of Christianity, and don't want their twisted version of it to go unchallenged in the wider world. I'm a midwesterner, now living in the Kansas City area, but also spent ten years living in the SF Bay area. I'm married to a wonderful microbiologist (she's wonderful all the way around, not just at science) and have a great little Kid, for whom I am the primary caretaker these days. I love the discussions around here, especially the combination of humor and seriousness that lets us take on incredibly tough stuff while keeping it all in perspective and treating one another with respect. And Preview is my friend.
 
Website:
http://my.firedoglake.com/members/peterr/
About Me:
I'm an ordained Lutheran pastor with a passion for language, progressive politics, and the intersection of people's inner sets of ideals and beliefs (aka "faith" to many) and their political actions. I mostly comment around here, but offer a weekly post or two as well. With the role that conservative Christianity plays in the current Republican politics, I believe that progressives ignore the dynamics of religion, religious language, and religiously-inspired actions at our own peril. I am also incensed at what the TheoCons have done to the public impression of Christianity, and don't want their twisted version of it to go unchallenged in the wider world. I'm a midwesterner, now living in the Kansas City area, but also spent ten years living in the SF Bay area. I'm married to a wonderful microbiologist (she's wonderful all the way around, not just at science) and have a great little Kid, for whom I am the primary caretaker these days. I love the discussions around here, especially the combination of humor and seriousness that lets us take on incredibly tough stuff while keeping it all in perspective and treating one another with respect. And Preview is my friend.

Guns Are on the Minds of Folks in Kansas City

By: Saturday April 19, 2014 9:00 am

Guns have been much on the minds of folks in the greater Kansas City area for the last couple of weeks. We’ve been going through a two-month string of shootings on area highways, now apparently ended with an arrest last Thursday night, and last Sunday’s killings in the parking lots of a Jewish community center and a Jewish retirement home by an anti-Semitic white supremacist. Further west, there’s the standoff in Nevada over unpaid grazing fees between the Bureau of Land Management and a freeloading, gunwaving wacko and his gunwaving wacko friends in the various militia movements, cheered on by folks like Sean Hannity.

What will it take to end the stranglehold that the blind worship of guns has on our culture?

Celebrating Confederate History Month Isn’t Just for The South

By: Saturday April 12, 2014 9:14 am

Ah, the heritage of the Confederacy. The South may have surrendered at Appomattox, but the war continues to be fought — and not just in the South, and not just by southerners. But of course, that’s where we need to start…

Earlier this week, Virginia’s Democratic Governor Terry McAuliffe announced that he would not be issuing any kind of proclamation making April “Confederate History Month” in his state, unlike several of his recent Republican predecessors. Among certain parts of the citizenry, that did not go over well.

Kain Colter, CJ Cregg, and Picking the Right Enemy

By: Saturday April 5, 2014 9:00 am

When the NU football team served notice to the NLRB that they wanted to form a players union, the general reaction in the sports world was “Ha!” All that changed, however, when the NLRB hearing officer not only approved their petition, but wrote a strong and sweeping opinion to explain and support his ruling.

A Few Religious Objections to Hobby Lobby, et al.

By: Wednesday March 26, 2014 3:57 pm

After reading through some of the recaps of the oral arguments at SCOTUS yesterday in Sebelius v. Hobby Lobby Stores and Conestoga Wood Specialties v. Sebelius, it appears that some of the justices, and perhaps a majority, are willing to allow private religious objections to trump the laws, regulations, and ordinances enacted by local, state, and federal governments. Just so that no one is surprised later, I thought I’d lay out some of my strongly held religious beliefs now.

Judicial Sarcasm Takes Down Michigan’s Anti-Marriage Equality Amendment

By: Saturday March 22, 2014 9:05 am

As I’ve watched the series of marriage equality cases move forward, I’m struck by how each ruling has its own flavor. Mark Cady in Iowa wrote movingly about the illogic of restricting marriage while proclaiming equal protection. Vaughn Walker in California was meticulous in getting facts into the record and weaving together the legal logic to take down Prop 8. Arenda Wright Allen in Virginia was powerful in her use of Loving v Virginia to lift up the role of the courts to forge justice “from fires of indignities and prejudices suffered”. Now comes Judge Bernard Friedman of the US Southern District of Michigan, who brought a sense of wit and sarcasm to bear on the target-rich environment of those opposed to marriage equality in the case of Deboer v Snyder.

It’s not just the ruling striking down Michigan’s Marriage Amendment [MMA] that makes me happy, but the withering way in which Friedman took on the arguments presented by the defendants. . .

The Air Force Must Have Some Really Good Cooks

By: Saturday March 15, 2014 9:02 am

We knew that the nuclear missile crews at Minot AFB were having problems passing their readiness checks, but now we learn that the missile launch folks had their bacon saved by having their poor test scores lumped together with the missile crew cooks and facilities managers. This raises a couple of questions . . .

Kansas Supreme Court Rules Against Brownback’s Assertion of Legislative Supremacy

By: Saturday March 8, 2014 10:08 am

In January 2013, a district court in Kansas ruled in Gannon v State of Kansas that the Kansas legislature was not meeting its constitutional obligation to properly fund K-12 education in the state. The ruling was a huge blow to Sam Brownback and his cronies, as it would require either huge state budget cuts elsewhere or (gasp) eliminating the tax cuts he so lovingly pushed through the legislature. Brownback et al. have been shouting for months that this is a political matter for the legislature, not the courts, to decide and yesterday’s ruling takes this shouting head on. Indeed, the bulk of the 110 page ruling is devoted to addressing this question, and they repeatedly and at length told Brownback and his minions in the legislature to pipe down and do their jobs.

Oh, and they then found big, big constitutional problems with the state funding of education . . .

The Click of the Camera Should Haunt KC Bishop Robert Finn

By: Saturday February 22, 2014 10:14 am

Bishop Robert Finn, head of the diocese of Kansas City-St. Joseph Missouri, has not had a good week as two big stories have put him back in the headlines, and not in a good way. Back in October 2011, Finn was charged with failing to report suspicions that one of his priests was creating child pornography, and in May 2012 he was found guilty and given a sentence that amounts to probation and supervision. Meanwhile, he remains bishop.

But that may change, as these two big stories collide . . .

Marriage Equality Moves Ahead, Thanks to Virginia Federal Judge Wright Allen

By: Saturday February 15, 2014 9:05 am

The push toward full marriage equality took another big step forward in Virginia on Thursday evening, just in time to make Valentine’s Day that much more happy for LGBTs and their allies. In a very readable, very well-written 41 page opinion, US District Judge Arenda L. Wright Allen (Eastern District of Virginia) struck down Virginia’s prohibition on same sex couples getting married in Virginia and those who were married elsewhere having their marriages recognized within the state.

The whole thing is great, but the very best parts of her opinion were in the footnotes . . .

Marriage Equality, Nullification, and Impeachment, Missouri Edition

By: Saturday February 8, 2014 9:06 am

After the Supreme Court struck down DOMA in US v Windsor, same sex couples in states like Missouri that discriminate against them are treading through a maze of conflicting state and federal laws and regulations. In Missouri, Gov. Jay Nixon has issued an executive order to cut through this mess with respect to filing state taxes, and the Missouri GOP has reacted in very predictable ways.

Can you say “articles of impeachment”? Sure you can.

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Upcoming FDL Book Salons

Saturday, April 26, 2014
2:00 pm Pacific
All the Presidents’ Bankers: The Hidden Alliances that Drive American Power
Chat with Nomi Prins about her new book. Hosted by Bill Black.

Sunday, April 27, 2014
2:00 pm Pacific
Summer of Beer and Whiskey: How Brewers, Barkeeps, Rowdies, Immigrants, and a Wild Pennant Fight Made Baseball America’s Game
Chat with Edward Achorn about his new book. Hosted by Richard Taylor (dakine01).

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