Friday, April 3, 2009

Bringing the elders back into Eden

Yesterday on NPR's Talk of the Nation, Dr. Bill Thomas describes a new kind of nursing home that he developed called Eden Alternatives:
Well you know how I think about this, it has to do with a question of risk. If you look back on the story of the garden Eden, risk was an important part of the picture. You had this sort of paradise and at the center of it was risk. And that's really what made it really a human environment--the first Eden. And one of the problems we have with nursing homes in America is we try to take all risk away from the elders and to protect them to a degree that in some cases can be smothering. One thing that we teach is that the only risk-free human environment is a coffin, and we'll all be there soon enough. So risk is a part of the garden, and it needs to be kept as part of the garden.

Thursday, April 2, 2009

Playmobil to German Pastor: stop Bible bending our toys!

Playmobil toys have been subjected to plastic surgery under the hands of an evangelical preacher in Germany to transform them from ordinary child's toys into models of biblical stories.

"We are quite tolerant if this is done in the privacy of the home but if someone crucifies a Playmobil figure, or, as in the case of Eve, glues on breasts, then this is a completely different dimension," explains a Playmobil spokeswoman.

You can view Rev. Markus Bomhard's creative/subversive work here.
No word yet on whether The Brick Testament has pushed the limits of Lego's tolerance.

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Washington Post defines circumcision in two acts

Reporting on a rally marking Genital Integrity Awareness Week, the Post explains:

How much of the medical community defines circumcision: a simple, nearly painless operation that removes an obsolete part of the body that can increase a man's susceptibility to infections and sexually transmitted diseases (circumcision reduces the risk of getting HIV by 60 percent, studies show).

How religion defines circumcision: as a covenant with God, as conveyed to Abraham.

Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Rep. John Shimkus: "The earth will end only when God declares it is time"

On March 25, 2009, at a hearing of the U.S. House Subcommittee on Energy and Environment, Rep. John Shimkus (R-IL) explained that global warming is nothing to fear.

After a rousing reading of Genesis 8:21-22 and Mathew 24, Shimkus explains that "man will not destroy this earth, this earth will not be destroyed by a flood. And I appreciate having panelists here who are men of faith and we can get into a theological discourse of that position but I do believe that God's word is infallible, unchanging, perfect."

Shimkus then has two other issues: a bit about dinosaurs and carbon levels and workers who are suffering due to the Clean Air Act.