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15 August 2015


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Margaret Steinfels

Now we can add the Yazdis girls to those taken by Boko Haram.


Starting paramedic training next week. Here's to a year of labor and love.


Some Saturday morning LOL...

CIA Asks Coast Guard For Its Cocaine Back http://www.duffelblog.com/2015/08/coast-guard-cocaine-seizure/

William R. Cumming

Apparently nightmares stalking surviving HC staff at the State Department as fears arise as to their vulnerability to obstruction of justice charges as Loretta Lynch and her staff work up the food chain.

IMO Joe Biden in the race by Labor Day.

And only question for Republicans is is it TRUMP or not?

William R. Cumming

Is there some fundamental tenet of misogyny in Islam, Judism, Christianity?



Interesting point. In early Christianity the patristic fathers tended to misogyny. In early Islam pagan women could be treated as "ghanima" (booty of war) and enslaved and were not haram for sexual use. I suppose the IS bastards are using this justification for their treatment of Yazidi women. Some Muslim here can inform me if there are hadith or Quranic passages that justify the treatment of Christian or Jewish women the same way. pl


Watched a full hour on 20/20 about the dentist
and Cecil incident. If the recreation of events are
accurate, he and the guide have some splaining
to do. The area they chose abutted the preserve
and it's not clear if it was an authorized site.
After baiting with the carcass of a dead elephant
literally across the railroad tracks from the preserve,
they waited. When a lion approached high powered
lights atop the vehicle froze the animal approximately
40 yards/ meters. It's hard to believe the guide did not
recognize the distinctive black mane or for that matter
the dentist. He shot him with a compound bow. The
next day they finished him off and were "shocked"
to find he was collared. After beheading him and skinning
the carcass a lame attempt was made to move the collar
around the area to confuse anyone monitoring the signal.
The dentist flew home shortly thereafter. As the person
who was monitoring Cecil commented, anyone who does
these type of hunts usually does his homework to avoid
something like this.


Do you think it's useful to project modern cultural values backwards to belief systems founded 1500 or more years ago?

I know I'm being a smartass here, but projecting modern cultural values on the past, as if that explains anything, has long been a pet peeve of mine and I've annoyed a number of women (and the occasional male :) ) over the years with my "gender realism."

On a more serious note... if there is supposed to be only one god, and that god is defined as male, that has certain logical consequences. This is not to say that the various polytheist religions were more feminist friendly as a whole. The status of women varied immensely depending on the region of the world and local culture.

Charles I

Good luck, much respect to helping professions.


pl, I think the word misogyny is overused these days. It's a strong word meaning the hatred or dislike of women or girls. Just because gender status is unequal does not mean it's based on hatred. Gender status is based on perceived superiority, and is transmitted culturally. For example many humans believe they are superior to animals but it doesn't mean they hate animals.

Paul Escobar

To all,

I never heard of the Taliban engaging in the kind of prostitution/human-trafficking and sexual-abuse we hear goes on within ISIS. From what I saw on TV, the charge against the Taliban was that their men were overly possessive & restrictive - in a monogamous sense.

But selling women & girls, sleeping around, raping kids, and running brothels? You'd figure the Taliban - being old-school Muslim and all - would have had incredible opportunity to do all that...given the chaos & ethnic conflict in Afghanistan.

I remember reading one interview with Hamid Gul (Pakistani ISI director-general) where he credited an operation that freed girls who were kidnapped & kept as sexual slaves by a warlord...as a propellant for Mullah Omar & the Taliban's rise.

If am wrong about this history, please do correct me. Otherwise, why are they both "fundamentalists"...but so different in their conduct during war? I thought Sunni Islam was codified law, so you'd expect uniformity of conduct.


WRC -- all have explicitly male deities, despite the evidence all around us that if there is an "informing presence" or "creator" out there, it's most likely female. This presumes, of course, that "male" and "female" have any meaning at that level of being. Remember, there's "Mother Eve," and despite the doggerel "In Adam's Fall, Sinned We All," it's pretty evident who gets the blame in the Abrahamic systems.
You can argue that the Roman flavor of Christianity tries to balance this by a fall back to the goddess Diana, and indeed does go some way down the path, but only by putting woman on a pedestal, rather than "underfoot" where she resides in many Evangelical and Islamic cultures. I'd argue that most female "progress" has been in the teeth of the dominant religions, and I fear as the Western economy continues to unwind, and men find it more difficult to find jobs than women, we'll see an even greater resurgence of misogyny. Happy trails!


Paul Escobar

I guess you are new here. I have written many times that there is not one Islam. There are many. Islam is a religion of laymen. There is no central authority. Groups of Muslims of varying size decide what is Islam on the basis of their consensus (ijma') Except for the rather ambiguous position of the Sufis Islam is about discerning God's well through study of scripture, hadith and case law. Muslims want to believe they are one as is their God but in truth they are of many kinds. There is no reason to be surprised that the Taliban and IS have different opinions. pl



I think it is impossible to call the traditional attitude of my church anything but misogynistic. pl

nick  b

You do know that's a satirical website like "the Onion", right?



pl, many people agree with you on that, and I understand and accept that reality. I'm used to being the one with "abnormal" opinions ;)


Here are some examples of societies where the gender status hierarchy is reversed. I do not think that these societies are based on misandry, just different gender status norms.

Meghalaya, India: Where women rule, and men are suffragettes http://www.bbc.com/news/magazine-16592633

6 Modern Societies Where Women Literally Rule http://mentalfloss.com/article/31274/6-modern-societies-where-women-literally-rule

Babak Makkinejad

You do not understand men - very few men actually like women, the way they are, the way they act, the way they think and the way they behave.



Yes they do. But meanwhile the Planned Parenthood organ trafficking videos still haven't made the MSM. I wonder when 20/20 is going to do an expose of them?

John Minnerath

Good for you Tyler. I spent close to 15 years as a volunteer EMT.
I was what was called an EMT2 at the time, we could do IV's, etc.
I was also trained in ACLS.
Lot of work for us with all the CME and hours every year we had to spend working in an ER.
We all felt it was a labor of love.


I have met a small number of heterosexual females over the years that feel similarly about men. Typical remark "my husband and my brothers are the only males I like and enjoy hanging around with... I prefer to socialize with women."

Personally I find men generally easier to get along with than women, though I have more close female friends than male friends. When I was younger I also preferred playing sports with men rather than women. My observation was that men are in general better "sports" while women tend to get more bitchy and moody when they lose games. Growing up I was a tomboy with an interest in math and science so this might be part of it. When I was young I was somewhat more likely to be outside playing army or sports with the boys in the neighborhood, but I also enjoyed playing Barbies or dress-up with my girlfriends and learning how to apply makeup.



I don't know if you are Catholic and with direct experience of this. I recommend the French TV series "The Churchmen," (Ainsi soit-il) as instructive. pl

Paul Escobar

Mr. Lang,

I have only been following this superficially. I assumed that IS was simply different in tactics & ambition. But the more I read about their antagonization of AQ and even the Taliban...the more I see how different they are.



pl, my religious background the 2 bit version... Danish Lutheran parents, born in Wash DC, baptized in an Anglican church in Canada (my dad's sister's family was living there at the time)... spent most of my formative years in a Congregational/UCC church in upstate NY except for a 2 year stint in a conservative Lutheran church in PA (at this time my best friend was a conservative Jew and I used to hang out with her B'nai B'rith group sometimes). While in high school I had a wonderful, liberal minister at the Congo church and he let me write my own confirmation vows (at 15) and I also started and ran a youth center in my small town based at that church. Went to college and decided I was an agnostic and possibly an atheist. Then started having "spiritual experiences" in my late 20's and part of that was a spiritual relationship I developed with Mary (I treated her as a goddess). This was my first real introduction to Catholicism though I grew up in a rural area with many Catholic friends that had large families.

I have studied mysticism quite a bit and this includes the Christian Mystics. Although I am no longer a Christian (as of my early 30's), I prefer Catholic Churches to Protestant ones due to the ritual and mysticism aspects, also the architecture. I had some lovely meditations at Saint Anne de Beaupre about 12 years ago when I went there. More than one Catholic woman there observed me doing this and would assume I was Catholic and start chatting me up about Mary and St. Anne (I never volunteered that I was not a fellow Catholic). In my late 30's I got interested in eastern religions and also studied Jewish mysticism a bit.

These days I would loosely label myself as a taoist polytheist mystic, or an omnist. I'm big on spiritual experiences and spiritual philosophy but religious dogma and related rules and labels not so much.



We need it out here. Too remote, and getting too dangerous to just assume it'll all work out.

I'm a lifetaker but also a lifesaver.

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