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Orthodox Bishops Gives Invocation at Democratic Convention

Discussion in 'The Ancient Way - Eastern Orthodox' started by KatherineS, Sep 5, 2012.

  1. rusmeister

    rusmeister A Russified American Orthodox Chestertonian

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    Not much I want to respond to. What I think worthwhile or necessary:
    No refusal at all. Not launching into praise of Frederick Douglass (well-deserved, he truly was a remarkable man, and worthy of standing alongside of Lincoln, imo) has no bearing on the greatness - or lack thereof -of American presidents.

    Since I said Lincoln was not perfect, there is no surprise in Chesterton noting deficiencies - which I have read and noted myself, having read the referred-to works. "What I Saw in America" is another outstanding work of a man who, not being American at all, managed to understand deep things about it that have escaped many Americans. (The bit on Andrew Jackson really opened my eyes).

    This is not a case of the pot calling the kettle black, but of the pot calling the linen black (which is not in the LEAST meant to be a racial reference). I do not myself depend on the historians who preceded yours and noted Lincoln's successes and denied failures as you depend on your historians. Lincoln's greatness is NOT contingent on his not taking a Martin Luther King stand; I do not impose my own culture on his; I can see that where he was coming from was a much darker place in race relations and he worked to change that. Dr King was fighting from a different position, and had the advantage over Lincoln of living in a country where slavery had been illegal for almost a century. Lincoln grew up in a country where it WAS legal. You yourself have grown up in an era when Civil Rights are reality.
    Those are basic facts which YOU seem to ignore, and not revisionism by anti-black historians. I guess this'll be followed by another mile-long post, but at this point, I'll let it go. It ain't worth it. I think the issue important, but there's only so much that you can say to another person.

    I guess you HAVE to knock Lincoln down hard to make today's leaders seem equal to him.
     
  2. Gxg (G²)

    Gxg (G²) Pilgrim/Monastic on the Road to God (Psalm 84:1-7) CF Ambassadors Supporter

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    Shalom Rus :)
    Inaccurate, IMHO, as discussing those who actually interacted up close/personal with the president in debate and were apart of the discussions and the times is central to understanding the way things were. THere is no way aroind that for understanding Lincoln as he was and the reasons why he changed many of his views and why many, both blacks and whites, either supported him or didn't. Presidents do not stand on their greatness by their own actions and it is opposition/their response to it that defines them as well.

    It is what it is
    Being "perfect" was never the argument. What was noted was whether or not Lincoln was "great" and overestimated, as Gurrney pointed out...and Chesterton noted that well in his writings as did others when pointing out much of the things people willfully leave out in praising all things Lincoln and failing to see the extensive myraid of issues that were out of place during his time.
    You already depended on historians when reading Chesterton in "What I saw in America"---and it's pressumptious claiming one doesn't rely on historians when one utilizes material (as it concerns speeches/debates and other things) that were collected by historians. It is red herring and a moot point, humorous that it was even attempted. For anyone can say "You're depending on your historians" as a quick way of trying to deflect from actually dealing what historical figures said in their own words at length----prior to anything regarding historical commentary. Dealing with the facts/what figures said in the context they were in isn't the same as relying on historians....and trying to argue around it is like one losing their temper/yelling and then claiming to others "I'm just being real/honest and trying to vent" while telling others who do so "They were just needing to have self-control." It's equivocation.

    It is what it is
    Not factual, for anyone remotely understanding of the plight of slavery, Jim Crow and actually helping out neighbors the way that Christ defined it. One of the reasons MLK will always be greater than Lincoln since he was consistent in his views and didn't say moral/Christian things for the sake of votes or show lack of concern for the plight of all people in all forms.

    What Martin stood on is what Fredrick Douglass, Sojourner Truth, Harriet Tubman, W.E.B Debois and many impacted by slavery stood on when it came to greatness based on moral justice/ equality. Of course, there are other forms of greateness that are seperate from moral stands. One can be great just as Caesar or Pharoah was--or great like Napoleon, yet that doesn't mean they have the greatness of others who sought to walk according to Christ (as MLK had).
    When trying to say what others need to do in order to match his greatness by saying they need to be against abortion as a president (as if Lincoln was concerned for such in his times), one already imposes their own culture on to their own.
    Again, not factual...and as said before, one of the reasons why ideology is skewed due to not having real understanding of history for minorities or the times when arguing in the same manner as others did in the time of King when claiming "Things aren't as bad as you think, Martin!!!". It's denying history when ignoring the evils of lynching, systematic terrorism/mob violence on black communities (i.e. Tulsa Race Riots, Rosewood, etc), mistreatment to Native Americans, paternalism.discrimination, adapted forced labor practices that helped extend slavery long after the end of the Civil War, Jim Crow, Wage Slavery in the North and many of the things present in the time of Lincoln that he never dealt with fully ....but King dealt with dead on in honor of Fredrick Douglass.

    Death was present in the face of others seeking to gain freedoms that Lincoln already noted he was not concerned with...freedoms that, without them, allowed for much of the same that happened before the Civil War and some of it modified to fit the times. It's why King in his "Poor Man's Campaign" was so significant since others, both black and white, long noted that fighting for intergration in the South as King did was only half the battle since they were already intergrated up North---but there was ECONOMIC discrimination/attempts to regulate blacks to the ghettos and virtual slavery while saying how great the North was (for whites in their illusion of greatness). For those in white America saying "You should be satisfied with the fact that the Civil Rights bill got passed", he realized why so many up north felt that others in America romanticized the Civil Rights movement since it was like fighting for the right to buy a hamburger---but failing to deal with the larger issue of how finances for buying them were virtually stripped away to keep people on a certain level.

    The standard narrative regarding Dr. King’s approach to racial issues says that he was simply an integrationist who believed that with persuasion, nonviolence and love the conscience of the white majority could be won over and racial justice would be achieved. Racism, as he understood it was mainly psychological. This popular interpretation – the one the mainstream media loves – fails, however, to embrace a holistic view of his mature thinking on white people, institutional racism and white supremacy culture. While for much of his career he optimistically believed the “great decent majority” of whites could be transformed, he began, in 1965, to understand just how deeply embedded racism was and how unwilling white people were to give up privilege and power for the sake of racial justice. Whereas he had once described America in the highest democratic ideals, he began to see it as “a confused…sick, neurotic nation.”

    When he visited Watts to try and help, he was booed and told to go home. To his surprise many blacks had never even heard of him. The gains of the civil rights movement had meant little to a population that was forced into ghetto life, barely able to survive and trapped in a cycle of poverty. The issues that characterized the Southern struggle such as separate drinking founntains, segregated restaurants and lack of voting rights weren’t the problem in Watts or the North in general. Rather, racism manifested most seriously in the form of economic and political inequality.

    The failure of whites to see the full context of riots such as Watts was one of the reasons King began to lose faith in them. He stated, “The riots are caused by nice, gentle, timid white moderates who are more concerned about order than justice.” King began to see that the maintenance of a permanent underclass was no accident. He placed the riots in the context of larger cultural crimes, noting that “The policy-makers of the white society have caused the darkness: they created discrimination; they created slums; they perpetuate unemployment, ignorance, and poverty. It is incontestable and deplorable that Negroes have committed crimes, but they are derivative crimes. They are born of the greater crimes of white society.”

    King noted best in his "The Other America" speech the reality of economic disparity amongst Negros and whites and why that will always be a serious issue.
    …We don’t want to be integrated out of power; we want to be integrated into power. – Dr. King
    MLK on Poverty in America
    What he organized with the Poor People's Campaign, the Sanitation Strike and being willing to be beaten/die for his beliefs is something Lincoln will never measure up to. For Lincoln reflected the racial superiority many in white America felt toward blacks, as it concerns his wishing for blacks to either leave the U.S or remain free while not being equals/seen as strong and worthy of respect as whites such as himself. King fought, in the face of death multiple times and with little resources (counter to Lincoln and the many privelages he had to work with as an elite ) to go against the superiority mindset that crippled the U.S. It was within the power of Lincoln to change the economic situation of minorities, be it South or North---yet like so many other presidents (even Obama), he ignored crucial opportunities due to flaws in his thinking and tragedies happened on his watch before, during and after the Reconstruction.

    Good deeds soiled by bad actions (Ecclesiastes 10:1). W.E.B Debois noted the same in his work "The Souls of Black Folk" when speaking of making things more rosey than they were in order to avoid facing the horror of how things actually were for minorities and owning shame. For there will always be two narratives within America for blacks/whites.
    Arbitrary point, Rus...as where others grow up has nothing to do with seeing the reality of how others were considered. Doesn't matter where others grew up (even though there are similar things LEGAL today that are just as horrendous, abortion being one of them)....for the focus is history on what it was like for those growing in the time Lincoln did---and what THEY noted about it. You also didn't grow up in the time of Lincoln, yet that doesn't hinder you from making a judgement on how presidents should act today in light of his example or making other comments as if you did.....and it has no bearing whatsoever on whether or not things were said and done to either establish greatness or take away from it. Thus, as you allow for yourself, it's equivocation to try to make another standard for others as if it establishes anything you've said. One needs to be consistent...

    There were others who grew up in Lincoln's time and spoke out against the economic inequality---and they are the ones who are truly great. No denying that simple reality will change those basic facts YOU seem content to do for the sake of ignoring seeing things as they actually were.
    No more "mile-long" in writing than what you wrote is "factual" at all points. That said, the ad-hominem via exaggeration is needless when it comes to discussing history and it would have been good if one was able to resist them. Nonetheless, as they generally are given by yourself toward any disagreeing with your own beliefs about the world as you see it, I can't say I'm surprised. That tends to be standard.
    Anytime history isn't dealt with accurately, I agree. It's not worth it. One can only go so far when it comes to willful avoidance of facts, in regards to the accuracy of Lincoln or seeing the issues for what they were when it comes to Lincoln. It has been done often, just as others in bipartisan politics often do when fighting to keep their image of how others are.
    Glad that you think the issue's important, as do others (myself included). It is because of importance that facts must be given rather than opinions alone or ideologies divorced from what happened in reality. One can only go so far in the matter sharing..
    No one has to knock Lincoln down at all when seeing plainly from his own writings and those of his contemporaries who either spoke in support of his disparaging views toward blacks or spoke out in condemnation of his actions/hypocrisy. Lincoln did enough of a good job condemning himself for the multiple things he did which were far from the scriptures. As said before, if others wish to support an image of how others want to see them, that is their right. A pity, of course (IMHO)...but nonetheless, they can do what they have to do since they already determine in their souls to see things for how they'd WISH it to be.

    We could go continue to go back/forth on the issue, but it seems we'll forever be at an impass and that's not beneficial (Ecclesiastes 7:8). Thus, many blessings to you in Christ. Shalom :)
     
    Last edited: Sep 11, 2012
  3. Gxg (G²)

    Gxg (G²) Pilgrim/Monastic on the Road to God (Psalm 84:1-7) CF Ambassadors Supporter

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    Would you say that there are times when even the countries we have good relations with need to be turned down?
     
  4. Gxg (G²)

    Gxg (G²) Pilgrim/Monastic on the Road to God (Psalm 84:1-7) CF Ambassadors Supporter

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    Technically, when studying the Founding Fathers (from Thomas Jefferson to Andrew Jackson) and their mistreatment of Native Americans/ignoral of Native Sovereignty and the continual breaking of treaties via equivocations (more here, here, here and here), despite their contributions (which allowed for the colonies to develop in the first place), it seems different...and yet similar at the same time, more of the same. What was allowed with Manifest destinty---the view that America's domination of the North American continent from sea to sea was the manifest intention of God---and what happened when it came to erasing indigenious cultures/eradicating them in the name of the "god-given right" , something's a bit off with that. It often seems one can be imperialistic anytime they desire when it comes to invoking God/claiming it is a right to do so.


    For those who are First Nations people, even what the Founding Fathers did in trreatment of them is essentially what is seen today with other groups around the world.
     
    Last edited: Sep 11, 2012
  5. rusmeister

    rusmeister A Russified American Orthodox Chestertonian

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    OK, Easy,
    I can certainly respond, and already get that you will respond to my responses ad infinitum. I don't think it either productive or spiritually good for either of us to engage in such an infinite conflict.

    All the best!
     
  6. MKJ

    MKJ Contributor

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    Very likely.


    A really easy way to make a substantial difference in the number of abortions would be universal health care and some sort of reliable and effective institutional support for mothers and families. And that isn't a supposition, we can see that abortion rates are lower in places with those kinds of programs, even when abortions are actually easier to get.
     
  7. Gxg (G²)

    Gxg (G²) Pilgrim/Monastic on the Road to God (Psalm 84:1-7) CF Ambassadors Supporter

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    Really felt sadden to see how the President was ready to support such programs as it concerns seriously reducing the number of abortions...but he often did not recieve any type of support from others opposed to him at all points.

    Social welfare programs/initiatives aimed at helping the poor are truly key in ensuring that the poor are taken care of. And if believers as well as others were to step it up in the realm of adoption/adoption reform, the number of children saved would greatly increase. But at the root of it all is addressing the cultural love for free sex/pleasure without consequences or bearing children...as it concerns fathers often pressuring their dates/ girls they impregnate to get rid of the child while the media culture supports great death via the music/t.v shows that promote the ideology of life being defined when people think someone's worthwile instead of when God says so.
     
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