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Messages - jebutler

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1
Your Turn / Re: Coronavirus news
« on: Yesterday at 12:05:22 PM »
https://dfw.cbslocal.com/2021/09/18/rowlett-restaurant-owner-explains-no-mask-policy-after-asking-family-to-leave/
Quote
“Our waitress came over, sat down next to me and said, ‘Our manager told me to come over because I am nicer than he is… But this is political and I need you to take your masks off.'”

No masks allowed.

It’s a policy you don’t hear often amid the pandemic, but the owner says he considers it part of the dress code.

“I have spent my money on the business, my blood sweat and tears in this business, and I don’t want masks in here,” Tom, the owner of Hang Time, said.

It is hard to satisfy everybody. I hope there are other restaurants in Rowlett TX.

Peace,
Michael

More detail from another news source https://www.dallasnews.com/food/restaurant-news/2021/09/20/rowlett-businessowner-says-no-masks-are-allowed-in-his-bar-can-he-do-that/

Absolute silliness. Unless a city or town requires masking, everyplace should be "masks optional." If you want to wear them, go ahead. If you don't, don't. To each his or her own.

But forbidding them entirely? That's just stupid.

2
Your Turn / Re: Coronavirus news
« on: Yesterday at 10:26:19 AM »
Pastor Butler:
But why allow facts to into the way of Charles' narrative?

Me:
Get real. Those facts came out after my original post. It's not as if I was hiding them. Every story develops, we learn new things.

Well, maybe you shouldn't be so quick with your judgments. Be honest: you used the story as a weapon. Your point was "Crazy anti-vaxxers attack NY restaurant hostess who is only following the law!" The fact they were from Texas just added to your glee.

But that narrative blew up in your face. Come to find out one of the group was a doctor. All of the women were vaccinated. The hostess called them the n-word. The hostess accused them of presenting fake vaccine passports. *That* was when the fight broke out. But "Racist hostess starts fight at restaurant by making false accusations" doesn't help your argument.

According Black Lives Matter NYC, 72% of black adults in NYC are not vaccinated. They are now arguing that the vaccine mandate is racist. “We’re putting this city on notice, that your mandate will not be another racist social-distance practice. Black people are not going to stand by, or you will see another uprising. And that is not a threat; that is a promise,” she said. “The vaccination passport is not a free passport to racism," said BLM-NYC co-founder Chivona Newsome.

She went on, "This vaccine mandate is disproportionately affecting people of color. People shouldn’t be forced to do it. It’s ‘for your health,’ but they’re willing to ruin people’s lives to protect against a virus with over a 99 percent survival rate. . . . This is going to be the new Jim Crow, and it’s going to affect mostly people of color."

What did you call the unvaccinated? Dumb? Selfish? Unconcerned? Did you argue that all the unvaccinated should be confined to their homes? I think I know what BLM-NYC would think of those views.

And yes, stories do evolve. Which bring up the question as to why you didn't update the situation. I don't even subscribe to the Times and I found the story, you should have. But again, those facts got in the way of your narrative...


3
Your Turn / Re: Coronavirus news
« on: September 20, 2021, 01:24:52 PM »
BTW, A restaurant hostess, following the law, asked patrons for proof of vaccination. And they attacked her physically, causing her to go to the hospital.

And, of course, there was more to this story. But why allow facts to into the way of Charles' narrative?

https://www.nytimes.com/2021/09/18/nyregion/carmines-vaccination-fight.html

4
Your Turn / Re: Coronavirus news
« on: September 16, 2021, 12:22:41 PM »

Or here’s an alternative. I think it is being used in France. You do not have to be vaccinated. But that means you stay home. You don’t go to restaurants. You don’t go to plays.  You don’t go to the movies Or soccer games. You stay home until some other means makes the pandemic disappear. Then you come out.

As usual, what Charles Austin thinks and what is actual true are two very different things.

Seriously, is it too much to take five minutes to use Google before posting?

https://www.gouvernement.fr/en/coronavirus-covid-19

I want you give us a list of what was false about Charles's facts. I see these fact played out every day in the reports I read about the COVID-19 infections in the U.S. (We aren't living in France.)

I honestly don't know if you are being intentionally obtuse or not. I seriously hope so, otherwise...

At any rate, I was responding to Charles' statement of what the rules are in France. (Why else do you think I included a URL from France?) Charles stated that in France, if you are not vaccinated "you stay home." He even says it twice. Only after the pandemic disappears can you "come out."

None of that is true. He's making it all up.

I would think that most people would actually look up the rules in another country before writing about them only to be shown to be completely wrong.

5
Your Turn / Re: Coronavirus news
« on: September 16, 2021, 10:12:34 AM »
So why, I ask again, should we be so tolerant of those refusing vaccinations? They are exactly like those who claimed the “right” to fill public places with tobacco smoke.

I'm tolerant of them because I'm vaccinated and have very little to worry about.

I'm tolerant of them because I try to understand where they are coming from and listen to their worries. I do what I can to relieve their fears.

I'm tolerant of them because some of them are friends and others are siblings and I care about them.

I'm tolerant of people who refuse vaccination because I'm tolerant of a lot of people who do a lot things I disagree with.

What else should I be? Smug, self-righteous, opinionated, and narrow minded?

Besides what else can we do?

Joe "I'm going to shut down the virus" Biden decides to play grumpy grandpa and comes up with unworkable plans. A) He wants to require all Federal workers and contractors to be vaccinated. Does he have any idea how many Federal workers there are? What if they all say "No!" Is he going to shut down the entire Federal government?

Is he going to cancel contracts with Federal contractors? Does he have any idea how many there are? Is he going to cancel contracts with Defense suppliers, construction companies, etc.?

I was just reading this morning that two hospitals in Texas may be closing because 20% of the nursing staff refuses to be vaccinated. 80% of those treated at one of those hospitals are on Medicaid, that makes them a Federal contractor. Now poor people will go without a hospital in their area! Good Job, Mr. President!

His second idea is to come up with an emergency OSHA ruling to require all employers with more than 100 people to be vaccinated. First, the courts will shut that rule down just like they did the asbestos rule in 1983 (look it up). Second, does he have any idea how many companies there are in America with more than 100 employees? Where is he going to get the manpower to enforce such a rule? I can just see it now: he can't enforce the rule on employers because he's fired all the inspectors.

I'll be tolerant. I'll be patient. You be you.

6
Your Turn / Re: Coronavirus news
« on: September 16, 2021, 09:49:53 AM »

Or here’s an alternative. I think it is being used in France. You do not have to be vaccinated. But that means you stay home. You don’t go to restaurants. You don’t go to plays.  You don’t go to the movies Or soccer games. You stay home until some other means makes the pandemic disappear. Then you come out.

As usual, what Charles Austin thinks and what is actual true are two very different things.

Seriously, is it too much to take five minutes to use Google before posting?

https://www.gouvernement.fr/en/coronavirus-covid-19

7
Your Turn / Re: Coronavirus news
« on: September 14, 2021, 12:43:31 PM »
Yes, indeed. The unvaccinated pose a whole host of difficulties and dangers to those who are vaccinated. I’ve been trying to say this for weeks. Having the unvaccinated getting sick and taking hospital rooms that might be needed for even more serious ailments is another way the dangers manifest themselves.

And vaccination mandates are causing many healthcare workers to resign. One hospital in upstate New York has already said that it is closing its maternity unit because a number of nurses has resigned. One survey of nurses in Ohio showed that 1/3 of the nurses in that state would rather resign than be vaccinated.

So be careful what you wish for; you might get it.

8
Your Turn / Re: Coronavirus news
« on: September 11, 2021, 06:51:34 PM »
Are you really concerned because the president is apparently not issuing orders where he has no standing to issue orders?

No, I am concerned because the president IS "issuing orders where he has no standing to issue orders." He had no standing to extend a moratorium on evictions. He does not have standing to force employers to police who is and who is not vaccinated. He certainly does not have standing to bulldoze his way through governors that disagree with him. White House Chief of Staff Ron Klain to the contrary, the President does not get a "work around."

9
Your Turn / Re: Coronavirus news
« on: September 10, 2021, 09:42:33 PM »
The protection, as everyone knows, Pastor Butler, is not 100%. Even we who are vaccinated can get sick, although we are less likely to get seriously sick or to die, although that, of course, is not impossible.
And how would we who are vaccinated get infected? From those who are not vaccinated, most likely.
Furthermore, the unvaccinated are a threat to each other.
Someone upstream accused me of the reference to “God culling the herd.” I don’t think I use that here, and I am not the origin of that reference, I’m inclined to think that those who refuse to be vaccinated are “culling” themselves. They are the ones getting seriously sick. They are the ones more likely to die.
I return to what I’m fairly certain was one of my very early comments. If there’s a chance in the vaccine can help us protect our neighbors, why would we not do it?
What is your specific reason for maintaining your position? Or do you have a position?

My position is that President Biden is incoherent and contradictory in dealing with what he called the "Delta variant 19". On one hand, he says that we are dealing with 'a pandemic of the unvaccinated.' He then states, "But as the science makes clear, if you’re fully vaccinated, you’re highly protected from severe illness, even if you get COVID-19. In fact, recent data indicates there is only one confirmed positive case per 5,000 fully vaccinated Americans per day."

On the other hand, he says that we need to "to protect vaccinated workers from unvaccinated co-workers." Well, if there is only a one in 5,000 chance of that happening, and a vaccinated person is "highly protected from severe illness" how much protection is really needed? (I should point out that in Massachusetts, it's more like a 1 in 20,000 chance of getting a breakthrough case). This statement contradicts what he said previously and implies that the vaccine doesn't actually work all that well.

With those odds, I don't need protection from unvaccinated people. Is the protection 100%? No, but since when is the risk zero? I assume you drive. Do you have a zero risk of accident? Do you ever walk outside? Do you have a zero chance of getting hit by a car? (I was hit by a truck while running on the road a couple of weeks ago.) I see dealing with unvaccinated people the same way--there is risk, but it's a reasonable risk.

Another area where the President is contradictory is on immigrants crossing our southern border. He has restricted travel from countries with very high immunization rates (like Ireland), while allowing thousands of unvaccinated people to cross our southern border every day. Worse yet, he wants to force employers to mandate vaccination for their employees, yet he doesn't mandate vaccination for those crossing the border. When asked about this discrepancy, Press Secretary Psaki simply said, "That's correct." To the question, "Should people be vaccinated or not?" the President's answer is, as far as I can tell, "That depends."

How should the President deal with this? He should have said that the Delta Variant is coming for the unvaccinated. Do they want to be protected when it comes or not? It is to their benefit to be vaccinated and they should be. As for those who have "natural immunity" the research says that natural immunity + vaccine = super incredible immunity. He should also close our southern border until this crisis is over.

Or he can state that every American that wants to be vaccinated has been vaccinated and that this has been the most successful vaccination effort in history and with that declare victory over "Delta variant 19". He seemed to think that worked for Afghanistan.

10
Your Turn / Re: Coronavirus news
« on: September 10, 2021, 06:10:54 PM »
Mr. Gale:
Mandates only make sense if the vaccines don’t work very well.
Me:
No. Mandates make sense because the vaccines work and some people aren’t taking them.

Then why did the president say that he wanted to protect the vaccinated from the unvaccinated? If a vaccine works, then what threat does an unvaccinated person pose to one with a vaccination?

The clear implication is that the vaccines must not work very well.

You explain his words.

11
Your Turn / Re: Sex offenders and church
« on: September 08, 2021, 12:06:06 PM »
We used to receive notifications about the presence of offenders in our neighborhood. They came from the county by mail. I think there may have been an effort to move those present out of the area because we have an elementary school right next door. We no longer receive the postcards when we used to receive several. There are both public and low rent housing near us.

I wish Massachusetts sent out those kinds of notifications. Best anyone can do is to go online and find out where registered sex offenders live in any given area.

12
Your Turn / Re: Sex offenders and church
« on: September 08, 2021, 11:49:50 AM »

What does a church do if someone who fails a background check due to sex offenses (but isn't technically a registered sex offender because of various loopholes, so is not subject to civil laws about access to children) wants to join? You can't say he or she isn't welcome to come to this church. If you did, how would you answer if the person responded by asking where you were suggesting her or she go? But you can't run a bunch of Sunday morning children's programs with such a person at liberty to wander the halls, either. It seem unfair to make one person's sins a public matter for everyone to be aware of without doing the same for other sins, but by the same token parents have a right to know what dangers their children might encounter in a given place.

How have your churches handled members who are sex offenders, registered or otherwise, in conjunction with running safe children's programs?

As a jail chaplain, I've been working with sex offenders for many years now. The term "sex offender" covers a wide range of offenses. But I'm assuming that Peter wants to focus on issues affecting children.

As I have gotten to minister to these men, I have come to the conclusion that most of them are suffering from a sexual orientation; they are actually sexually attracted to children. One guy, Mike, told me, "I need to stay away from kids." Another guy is in Federal prison. He is undergoing a cognitive therapy program to discover the root of his desires. It's sad, really. I can't speak for every child sex offender, but most of them tell me that they loathe their desires (and often themselves), but they don't know what to do with them. I think that's why I often have some of the best attendance on that unit. They are desperate for the Gospel.

I make it clear to the guys that when they get out and begin attending a church, they need to make an appointment with the pastor ASAP. They need to be completely open and honest about their sin; they cannot withhold anything. They need to be willing to come under whatever strictures the pastor and leadership deem necessary. At the very least, they cannot, under any circumstances, work with children or even go into the church hallways unsupervised.

This may seem unfair, but these guys have a deep disorder; they honestly cannot help themselves. I remember one guy who had these uncontrollable urges to expose himself. He was one of the nicest people you'd ever meet. He hated what he did. But this urge would come over him and he couldn't stop himself. Then he'd run and hide in his closet and start crying with remorse, which is where the police consistently found him. (He was finally put away for a long time.)

BTW, I would do the same for any former inmate who came to St. Luke's. At the jail, I never ask what they are in for. But if they come to my church, then I need to know, for the church's protection and for their own. After all, how can we be accountable for our brothers if we do not know their needs? And, given the crime, there may be other strictures in place, e.g. I would never allow a guy who was sentenced for embezzlement to serve as church treasurer.

Hope you find this helpful.

FWIW, it is quite common that the sexual assault of a child is not limited to one child victim. (Schaer had a conviction for sexually assaulting another underaged stepdaughter in 1983.) if that is the case, it's highly unlikely that they will "get out and begin attending a church." Shortly before they complete their prison sentence, the state attorney general's office will coordinate with the the county attorney where the conviction(s) took place and begin a civil commitment as a sexually dangerous person and/or a sexual psychopathic personality. They get committed to St Peter or Moose Lake, both lockdown facilities, and the likelihood of them ever getting out of there is quite slim at best.

So, here in Minnesota, there's seldom a need to deal with a sexual predator attending a church where children are present.

That might be the situation in Minnesota, Don, but not here in Massachusetts. One guy, who molested his granddaughter, was released; I can walk from my church to his house. He started attending a non-Lutheran congregation near me and called me to ask how he should approach the pastor. I've got two other guys in a medium security prison who will get out in the next couple of years and will be returning to their communities. Don't ask me how many times the guy who exposed himself was in and out of the county jail before being put away for an extended sentence.

Again the term "sex offender" covers a wide range of crimes. And state laws vary. Always check with a local lawyer.

13
Your Turn / Re: Sex offenders and church
« on: September 08, 2021, 09:56:09 AM »

What does a church do if someone who fails a background check due to sex offenses (but isn't technically a registered sex offender because of various loopholes, so is not subject to civil laws about access to children) wants to join? You can't say he or she isn't welcome to come to this church. If you did, how would you answer if the person responded by asking where you were suggesting her or she go? But you can't run a bunch of Sunday morning children's programs with such a person at liberty to wander the halls, either. It seem unfair to make one person's sins a public matter for everyone to be aware of without doing the same for other sins, but by the same token parents have a right to know what dangers their children might encounter in a given place.

How have your churches handled members who are sex offenders, registered or otherwise, in conjunction with running safe children's programs?

As a jail chaplain, I've been working with sex offenders for many years now. The term "sex offender" covers a wide range of offenses. But I'm assuming that Peter wants to focus on issues affecting children.

As I have gotten to minister to these men, I have come to the conclusion that most of them are suffering from a sexual orientation; they are actually sexually attracted to children. One guy, Mike, told me, "I need to stay away from kids." Another guy is in Federal prison. He is undergoing a cognitive therapy program to discover the root of his desires. It's sad, really. I can't speak for every child sex offender, but most of them tell me that they loathe their desires (and often themselves), but they don't know what to do with them. I think that's why I often have some of the best attendance on that unit. They are desperate for the Gospel.

I make it clear to the guys that when they get out and begin attending a church, they need to make an appointment with the pastor ASAP. They need to be completely open and honest about their sin; they cannot withhold anything. They need to be willing to come under whatever strictures the pastor and leadership deem necessary. At the very least, they cannot, under any circumstances, work with children or even go into the church hallways unsupervised.

This may seem unfair, but these guys have a deep disorder; they honestly cannot help themselves. I remember one guy who had these uncontrollable urges to expose himself. He was one of the nicest people you'd ever meet. He hated what he did. But this urge would come over him and he couldn't stop himself. Then he'd run and hide in his closet and start crying with remorse, which is where the police consistently found him. (He was finally put away for a long time.)

BTW, I would do the same for any former inmate who came to St. Luke's. At the jail, I never ask what they are in for. But if they come to my church, then I need to know, for the church's protection and for their own. After all, how can we be accountable for our brothers if we do not know their needs? And, given the crime, there may be other strictures in place, e.g. I would never allow a guy who was sentenced for embezzlement to serve as church treasurer.

Hope you find this helpful.

14
Your Turn / Re: Once again, in loco parentis
« on: September 08, 2021, 09:01:22 AM »
Pastor Butler, I forgive you your insults and slander and attempts to denigrate my service to the church. Your personal attack should not be permitted here. You get away with saying things which would bring me censure if I posted an assessment of who is involved in “real ministry.”

I don't know why you're so offended. You should be proud of yourself. You managed to get a cushy job as a "humble correspondent" writing LCUSA and LWF puff pieces. No weekly sermon to prepare. No council meetings to attend. No difficult parishioners to deal with. No sitting at the bedside of a member who is dying. No pushing back a vacation because someone in the congregation died and you need to do the funeral. Just write some happy PR pieces  and a big paycheck. You started off as anti-establishment and not only became part of the establishment, you made big bucks off it. Why be ashamed of that? If I pulled off a deal like that, I'd let my freak flag fly and be laughing at the guys who actually work for a living.

BTW, don't get upset with me because you didn't do any real ministry once you went to work for the Times and then got the church publication jobs. If you actually considered yourself a pastor, you'd call yourself one. But you don't. You refer to yourself as a "humble correspondent." I'm just taking you at your word. Well, the correspondent part anyway.

This means that I, along with millions and millions of other Christians around the world, support same gender marriage.

You realize, of course, that appealing to these "millions and millions" is a logical fallacy. I wouldn't use a fallacy like that to advance an argument, but you do you.

FWIW, there are also "millions and millions of other Christians around the world" who do not "support same gender marriage."

They include the millions in the EEMCY, the largest Lutheran church in the world and the Malagasy Lutheran Church in Madagascar (12 million combined).  Then there is the Evangelical Lutheran Church of Kenya, the Lutheran Church in Korea, and the Lutheran church of Ingria. Those are just some LWF members that I can think of off hand. I'm sure there are many others.

Then there are the millions of African Anglicans and African United Methodists, not to mention Korean Presbyterians and Pentecostals, etc.

Of course, if you are going to talk about the "millions" then you need to include Rome and the Orthodox churches. While you will find priests and congregations with different viewpoints, ultimately their official teaching does not support same sex marriages.

15
Your Turn / Re: Once again, in loco parentis
« on: September 07, 2021, 07:12:09 PM »
P.S. Yeah, this thread was/is about confidentiality and loco parents and schools and hummingbirds. But - OMG! NO! - threads drift.

That's because you have this really weird hangup. Don't get it myself.

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