The Ghost of Snapped Shot

Or, welcome to my low-maintenance heck.

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Things that annoy me

As much as I respect Vivian Paige, I firmly believe that nobody should be forced to apologize for history. History is, by definition, historic and unchangeable, and moreover, those involved in drafting the legislation in question are causing the Commonwealth to apologize for something which very few of its current Citizens are even remotely responsible for. Although, on second thought, seeing how many New Yorkers and Californians have infested relocated to Fairfax County, maybe she does have a point: New Englanders were the primary purveyors of the shipping side of the Slave Trade, even after it was outlawed by the U.S. Constitution, and California was built to no insignificant degree with Chinese slave labor. Even so, I still hope that this bill dies a sudden death, so that the Commonwealth may maintain at least a slight shred of its dignity and former glory.

She's the Queen, all right... of Pork!
Moving on, it's also quite annoying to see that we've coronated a Queen, at least, the way the media is portraying her we have. I mean, the Yahoo! News front page for today says it all for me. Royalty. One can only wonder how much moolah this is costing the American taxpayer -- or how many Corporate donations are bribing her contributing to the festivities (hint to you liberals: "Charities," "trust funds," and "non-governmental organizations" are corporations too!)

Finally, nothing bothers me more than blatant historical revisionism. (Or is that, "Waldoism?") Thomas Jefferson was not a "deist," interested in all religions, he was primarily a Christian. His newly-rediscovered Quran was given to him as a gift by the Ambassador from Tripoli, while he was representing the united States to England. That didn't stop him from declaring war on, and unleashing the wrath of that vaunted bunch of Dragoons upon the very same Ambassador's government, and it didn't imply that Jefferson himself was an "admirer" of Islam.

Man, 2007 is shaping up to be the most annoying year yet at this rate!

 


Comments:

#1 Waldo Jaquith 04-Jan-2007
Historical revisionism? Deist? I'm not sure what part of my post you're rebutting, or why you put "deist" in quotes since you're not actually quoting anybody. That blog entry consists almost entirely of a quote from Thomas Jefferson. I made no assertions about his religion or whether or not he was a deist or, in fact, about him at all.

It's up in the air, FWIW, whether he was. On the one hand, Jefferson did not believe that Jesus was God. (Hence the Jefferson Bible, in which he removed all sections that claim that Jesus performed miracles, which he believed to be implausible.) He simply believed that Jesus was a really great guy, like Buddha. On the other hand, Jefferson believed in an afterlife, something that is not associated with deism.

Deism was popular among Jefferson's generation and peers. Seems to me that he adopted those aspects of it which he found compelling and kept those beliefs that he found more compelling.

What Jefferson's religious beliefs were are very much a topic of debate. I don't claim to have any answers, so I hope you will refrain from pretending that I do.
#2 Brian 04-Jan-2007
Waldo,

I'm honoured that such a celebrity as yourself stopped by to comment, Sir! Of course, I didn't really mean to smear you personally--directly or indirectly--with my wholly invented "Waldoism," so I do apologize for the negative connotation that it inferred. I was doing my best to express my deep frustration over the brouhaha surrounding Jefferson's Quran and much of the surrounding hyperbole over the non-story in the press. Of course, part of that frustration is the misconceptions which many on the Left seem to have about Jefferson - for instance, about his Bible:

[i]THOMAS JEFFERSON THE CHRISTIAN. While Jefferson is the "Poster Boy" of the "haven't got A-CLU" folks who spout out "Separation of Church and State", did you know that the much derided "Jefferson Bible" includes the words of Jesus on the Miracles? Or that the "Jefferson Bible" was a "Bible Study" done by the President in the White House [b]to create a "Gospel Tract" to help evangelize the Indians to Christianity?[/b] So much for the false notion of "Separation of Church and State". Yet for centuries since Jefferson criticized some preachers for preaching "rags" (a Biblical allusion, by the way) that covered and concealed the pure words of Jesus, he has been attacked as "Not Christian, Unitarian, or a Deist." Might there be less than pure motives, or less than the best scholarship, in these "character assassinations" of President Jefferson?[/i]

Furthermore, Jefferson, in his ringing defence of Christianity as evidenced by his oft-misquoted letters to the Danbury Baptists, promised that the First Amendment would build a "wall of separation" protecting the church from government interference, rather than protecting the government from religious interaction, as his words are interpreted today.

Of course, of all of the reporters covering the Quran story today, not a single one of them felt compelled to mention that Thomas Jefferson waged a war against the Islamic pirates of the Barbary Coast, without the prior consent of Congress.

Conspiracy? Laziness? Your guess is as good as mine, of course.

Again, sir, I do hold you in the highest regards, as you've done quite a bit to civilize the wild frontiers of the Virginian blogosphere, and I do support your actions in the latest fluffle you're in. I remain,

Most Respectfully,
Brian L.
#3 Vivian J. Paige 04-Jan-2007
I don't understand why anyone would be against apologizing for slavery. Tell me: what is the downside to an apology?
#4 captainfish 05-Jan-2007
Because the current people of today are not, did not, committ that slavery. Should we formerly apologize for invading Indian lands when we first landed on these N. American shores? Should we apologize to Great Brittain for declaring war against it? Should we apologize for whiping out the Neandertals? Should we apologize to bugs when we squish them? To trees when we cut them down?

Life is Life. Life now is different to life back when. Slavery was NORMAL back then and even several thousands of years before then. You can not apologize for things that occurred in history. Yes, you can and should learn from history and your actions you took back then.

I would not expect Japan to apologize today for attacking Pearl Harbor or for all the brutal slayings/torture/slavery that occurred during its reign of power. The people of today are completely different from those people of that history.

Grow up. Get a life. Get over it.
#5 Hapkido 05-Jan-2007
I have to agree with captainfish & Brian. History is what it is. Expecting an apology for slavery from the current generation implies that horrible stain on our country's history is a case where the sins of the fathers are perpetually visited on the sons.

Furthermore, not ALL current Americans could have ancestors who participated in slavery. Mine, for example, didn't emigrate to the USA until after 1900. We could no more include ourselves in that apology than I could confess to a crime I didn't commit.

It seems to me that the best way to issue an "apology" is, as captainfish suggests, to learn from history - something which is lost on many of our European allies.
#6 Brian 05-Jan-2007
Vivian,

Two celebrities in one day? I'm literally beside myself with all of this attention! It's doubly an honour to hear from you, Ma'am!

:)

With regards to your question, I'd tend to agree with the sentiments posted by my astute readers, but if you will, allow me to elaborate a touch:

The first and foremost reason why it is wrong for the Commonwealth to apologize, is that history is immutable. Issuing written apologies for past events does nothing to change the events, and considering that said apology isn't coming from the actual "perpetrators" of the alleged crime, there is no resolution for the guilt involved.

Secondly, and equally important: An apology *implies guilt* on the shoulders of the Government of our fair Commonwealth, and as any lawyer will tell you, anything that implies guilt *is* grounds for a lawsuit, justified or not. [b]Would you propose that [u]we punish[/u] the citizens of our Commonwealth who arrived, as Hapkido said, recently, and [u]had nothing to do[/u] with the events that transpired beforehand?[/b] After all, any lawsuit against our grand Nation (Sic Semper Tyrannis) *will,* by nature of the fact that its defence will come out of the Public treasury, be a punishment on every single Citizen thereof.

Finally, while our Lord calls upon all of us to be resolute and apologetic towards each other, I think you'll find that the standards He set for us were set on an *interpersonal* level, not on a governmental level. Our Lord never asked the Romans to apologize for enslaving the Jews - and His instructions to the Hebrews were *explicit:* The Government instituted above them was put there by God's design, and as a result, they were instructed to honour their Government ("Give unto Caesar," no?), even if their Government didn't honour the Lord.

In any case, Vivian, I continue to hold you in the highest regards! I enjoy reading your blog every day, because even if we don't agree on many issues, we certainly share a strong faith in the Giver of Life! I hope that my reply was sufficient to explain some of my rationale,

Your Humble Servant,
Brian L.
#7 Waldo Jaquith 05-Jan-2007
Ha! Celebrity. :) It's after noon and I still haven't eaten breakfast. The shades are drawn because I'm too lazy to open them. I just finished cleaning up where the (foster) dog pissed on the floor. Ain't no celebrities here. :)

I have to agree that the coverage of Ellison and his swearing-in has been shallow lacked any meaningful detail, but so it goes. But now you've done your job as a citizen-journalism of explaining the ways in which the coverage is shallow, by way of your comment, and a good number of us have read it. The system works. ;)

BTW, "fluffle"? That's an great word. I'm going to have to start using it.
#8 Brian 05-Jan-2007
[i]Ha! Celebrity. :-) It's after noon and I still haven't eaten breakfast. The shades are drawn because I'm too lazy to open them. I just finished cleaning up where the (foster) dog pissed on the floor. Ain't no celebrities here. :-)[/i]

:-O !!!

Wow, where in the world can I sign up for "The Good Life?" Here I am getting up at "oh-dark-thirty" to make a living over here! (At least get a *little* bit of time at work to chime in here online once in a while, though...) Who knew you could make a [i]living[/i] doing this stuff?

:)

[i]I have to agree that the coverage of Ellison and his swearing-in has been shallow lacked any meaningful detail, but so it goes. But now you've done your job as a citizen-journalism of explaining the ways in which the coverage is shallow, by way of your comment, and a good number of us have read it. The system works.

BTW, "fluffle"? That's an great word. I'm going to have to start using it.[/i]

Thank you for the kind words, Sir, but I do know my place here in the blogosphere:



I'm right down there under "Web Photos." To compare, I'm pretty sure that yourself and Vivian are somewhere up near Dental School.

Again, thanks for the kind words! It's always neat to encounter others on the Blogosphere like this, and have a chance to communicate directly. I never cease to be amazed by the delightful sorts of people I meet out here! In any case, I look forward to seeing you in politics sometime in the future here in the Old Dominion. No doubt you'll be in the Assembly before I know it.

Regards,
Brian
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