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The right-wing frame is now complete and Bill Frist has signed on with Tom DeLay: "The filibuster was once abused to protect racial bias, and it is now used against people of faith." This is not just the nuclear option; it is the thermonuclear option. The implicit claim is that every religious person is a right-wing conservative. Filibustering against horrendous right-wing judges is repudiating all believers in every religion - and being racist to boot.  The national campaign is on. Sunday April 24 is booked for national TV at a Kentucky megachurch and called "Justice Sunday."

We must respond. We will call April 24 "Social Justice Sunday." We must show that spiritual progressives are alive and well and willing not just to speak out, but to shout out. The Clergy and Laity Network and are leading the effort.

Religious progressives support social justice, not injustice. We want to protect life all the way from birth up until the edge of death. We will brook no government interference in difficult, even agonizing family decisions. We believe the common good is necessary if we are to pursue our private goods, and that government should use the common wealth for the common good. And we need our judges, and we need to keep them safe.

There are more religious progressives than right-wing fundamentalists. There are more of us than of them. They may be better organized, but this is changing and that change starts April 24. This is our test. Will we stand up to them? Will we write to our ministers, priests, imams and rabbis asking them to join us in speaking out? Will they put signs on their places of worship celebrating "Social Justice Sunday?"  Will we organize and hold candle-light vigils and marches on the evening of April 24? Will we invite the media to sermons on Social Justice Sunday and to vigils?

We have already begun to organize - in just hours. and the Clergy and Laity Network issued a press release and activated their coalition of sixty progressive religious organizations. We called upon every religious organization to join with us.

We are members of Martin Luther King's "beloved community."

Originally posted to George Lakoff and Elisabeth Wehling on Fri Apr 15, 2005 at 05:01 PM PDT.

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Comment Preferences

  •  Thank you (4.00)
    You are absolutely right.  We have to. And we will.  

    Will you give us more guidance in the next week?

    •  We need talking points (3.66)
      by this Sunday.  Any Democrat on Sunday morning talk who strays should be taken out back and beaten. It is past time that we speak with one voice, there are overriding principals with which we all agree, lets stick to the script.
      •  While we wait talking points... (4.00)
        1. Check Rockridge Institute's website for further information about framing; Lakoff may post there first.

        2. Watch for any promotions of right-wing programming on right-leaning media outlets.  We need to treat this in the same manner that we did with Sinclair last fall -- phonecalls, faxes to program directors/broadcasters, letters to newspaper editors, dump stock where applicable, contact then boycott advertisers.  

        3. Be prepared to go after the licensing of any media outlet using public airwaves to promote this bigotry on Sunday.

        What'd I miss?  Anybody?
      •  Beaten? (none)
        What does that mean, should be taken out back and beaten because they "stray" on the Sunday morning talk shows?  I'm sorry but you really lose me here.  Speak with one voice?  Stick to the script?  Am I missing something?  Call me clueless.
      •  Too True!!! (4.00)
        Are the "war room" bloggers checking in here regularly? Harry Reid needs his house in order before the Sunday talk. It would also be nice if some of them could at least appear to be competent...even dumbya pulls it off once in a while.

        Nothing in all the world is more dangerous than sincere ignorance and conscientious stupidity.--Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.

        by rcvanoz on Fri Apr 15, 2005 at 07:20:04 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  How about Religious Freedom Sunday? (4.00)
        Many Americans associate the words "social justice" with socialism or the evil liberalism, the truth is what we're advocating is religious freedom so let's own it.
        •  Freedom: yes. (4.00)
          I think your point VERY well taken.  We believe in religious choice, not mandatory snake-handling.  It's Bible Nazis vs. American Values

          "We cannot let terriers and rogue nations hold this nation hostile. - W, 09/09/00

          by Bob Love on Fri Apr 15, 2005 at 08:53:16 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  not Bible Nazis, "Fundamentalists" (4.00)
            The right has done a good job of demonizing fundamentalist Islam. But fundamentalist Christians (or Jews or Hindus) are equally dangerous.

            The public already knows that fundamentalists are extreme zealots, not conservatives, that they want to return to an archaic way of life and oppose opportunities for women and progress.

            •  not in all cases (none)
              Absolutely, Conservative Evangelical Christians and Dominionists like Bush, DeLay and Frist are zealots.

              But I, too am considered a fundamentalist Christian -- but a liberal one. And I'm diametrically opposed to what Frist is doing.

              My pastor gave a terrific sermon a few weeks ago that explores how we might combat the CE-fundies. I just posted a diary about it... check it out here

              •  CE-Fundies? (none)
                It took me a minute to decipher this acronym. I've been using the term "radical fudamentalist" to differentiate the people I consider dangerous from the liberal/progressive Christians.

                But you self-identify as a fundamentalist so how do I pick a word that frames/differentiates in a useful way?

                I'm sticking with "radical fundamentalist" until something better/more-commonly-understood comes along.

              •  thanks for the link (none)
                Didn't mean to lump all who practice religion with the extremists. But I think you're going to have a hard time reclaiming the term "fundamentalism" from the crazies--I probably wouldn't try.

                I say that as an extremely liberal atheist, but someone who (at least in principle) has nothing against "conservatives" or "Republicans." My associations with the word "fundamentalist" are all negative.

            •  TALIBANGELISTS (4.00)
              We could use some clips & texts of Taliban speeches & pronouncements, & mirror them w/Fundie pronouncements.  I bet you can't tell them apart.

              "Everything should be made as simple as possible, but not simpler." Albert Einstein

              by x on Sat Apr 16, 2005 at 08:27:56 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

            •  Religious Extremists (none)
              It's exactly what they are, and it makes the connection between "our" extremists and "theirs."
          •  I prefer (4.00)
            the term, Pseudo Christians over Bible Nazis. I
            just don't like Nazis. Sue me if it's still legally possible.

            "The lunatics have overtaken the asylum." Who's responsible for this mess?

            by Skylor on Fri Apr 15, 2005 at 10:55:34 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  depends on my mood (none)
              Pseudo-Christians works too; it depends on my disposition of the moment.  I like neither Bible Nazis nor National Socialist Nazis.  To me they differ in the level of violence they're willing to endorse and commit, not in the raw substance of their views.

              Eric Rudolph is a Bible Nazi.  Christian Identity is a Bible Nazi organization.  

              If they can fictionalize fenminists into femi-nazis, I think I'm on very safe ground calling them Bible Nazis.  

              "We cannot let terriers and rogue nations hold this nation hostile. - W, 09/09/00

              by Bob Love on Sat Apr 16, 2005 at 04:05:29 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  False Profiteers (for the leadership) n/t (none)

                "And we rock, because it's us against them." Tom Gabel, Against Me!

                by wardad on Sat Apr 16, 2005 at 05:24:58 AM PDT

                [ Parent ]

              •  Pharisees (4.00)
                That's what they are. Just like the ones in the Bible.

                Then spake Jesus to the multitude, and to his disciples, saying,

                The scribes and the Pharisees sit in Moses' seat: all therefore whatsoever they bid you observe, that observe and do; but do not ye after their works: for they say, and do not.

                For they bind heavy burdens and grievous to be borne, and lay them on men's shoulders; but they themselves will not move them with one of their fingers.

                But all their works they do for to be seen of men: they make broad their phylacteries, and enlarge the borders of their garments, and love the uppermost rooms at feasts, and the chief seats in the synagogues,    and greetings in the markets, and to be called of men, Rabbi, Rabbi.

                But be not ye called Rabbi: for one is your Master, even Christ; and all ye are brethren.

                And call no man your father upon the earth: for one is your Father, which is in heaven.

                Neither be ye called masters: for one is your Master, even Christ.

                But he that is greatest among you shall be your servant.

                And whosoever shall exalt himself shall be abased; and he that shall humble himself shall be exalted.

                But woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye shut up the kingdom of heaven against men: for ye neither go in yourselves, neither suffer ye them that are entering to go in.

                Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye devour widows' houses, and for a pretense make long prayer: therefore ye shall receive the greater damnation.

                Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye compass sea and land to make one proselyte; and when he is made, ye make him twofold more the child of hell than yourselves.

                Woe unto you, ye blind guides, which say, Whosoever shall swear by the temple, it is nothing; but whosoever shall swear by the gold of the temple, he is a debtor!

                Ye fools and blind: for whether is greater, the gold, or the temple that sanctifieth the gold?

                And, Whosoever shall swear by the altar, it is nothing; but whosoever sweareth by the gift that is upon it, he is guilty.

                Ye fools and blind: for whether is greater, the gift, or the altar that sanctifieth the gift?

                Whoso therefore shall swear by the altar, sweareth by it, and by all things thereon.

                And whoso shall swear by the temple, sweareth by it, and by him that dwelleth therein.

                And he that shall swear by heaven, sweareth by the throne of God, and by him that sitteth thereon.

                Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye pay tithe of mint and anise and cummin, and have omitted the weightier matters of the law, judgment, mercy, and faith: these ought ye to have done, and not to leave the other undone.

                Ye blind guides, which strain at a gnat, and swallow a camel.

                Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye make clean the outside of the cup and of the platter, but within they are full of extortion and excess.

                Thou blind Pharisee, cleanse first that which is within the cup and platter, that the outside of them may be clean also.

                Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye are like unto whited sepulchres, which indeed appear beautiful outward, but are within full of dead men's bones, and of all uncleanness.

                Even so ye also outwardly appear righteous unto men, but within ye are full of hypocrisy and iniquity.

                Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! because ye build the tombs of the prophets, and garnish the sepulchres of the righteous, and say, If we had been in the days of our fathers, we would not have been partakers with them in the blood of the prophets.

                Wherefore ye be witnesses unto yourselves, that ye are the children of them which killed the prophets.

                Fill ye up then the measure of your fathers.

                Ye serpents, ye generation of vipers, how can ye escape the damnation of hell?

                Wherefore, behold, I send unto you prophets, and wise men, and scribes: and some of them ye shall kill and crucify; and some of them shall ye scourge in your synagogues, and persecute them from city to city: that upon you may come all the righteous blood shed upon the earth, from the blood of righteous unto the blood of Zechari'ah son of Berechi'ah, whom ye slew between the temple and the altar.

                Verily I say unto you, All these things shall come upon this generation.

                Matthew 23, King James Version

                I apologize for the length, but it's important to see the WHOLE verse, not just a piece of it, to get just how angry Jesus was at these people.

                Jesus didn't like them then, I doubt he supports them now. ;-)

                •  I refer to them as (none)
                  fucking fuck fuck fucking fuck ACK?!?! (the ack is where my brain shorts out trying to express my deep disdain in a curse word more vile than any vile word ever uttered.)

                  It was when I went to a methodist church and the female pastor talked at length about what essentially amounted to a religious holy war in Iraq that I freaked on those fuckers.

                  Really. If you are for the war in Iraq then you hate jesus.

                  The GOP and the Elephant are both Introduced Species

                  by roboton on Sat Apr 16, 2005 at 02:21:26 PM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

            •  there's always bible-thumper (none)
              Here's a useful definition from the Urban Dictionary:

              One who uses the Bible to attack/defame others' characters instead of as a guide to proper living. These people tend to be depressingly ignorant of anything else except the Bible and behavior as expected by the religious.
        •  ties in nicely with Passover as well (4.00)
          Passover celebrates religioius freedom, and the 24th is the second day of Passover, so you have a nice there as well.
  •  Nice to see you post a diary here (4.00)
    This tactic by Frist will hopefully go down as one of the worst political miscalculations in recent years.

    Thansk for your help

    In the midst of life we are in debt, etc.

    by ablington on Fri Apr 15, 2005 at 05:16:07 PM PDT

  •  Welcome Prof. Lakoff (4.00)
    In the words of Al Sharpton, it's time for the Christian Right to meet the Right Christians.
    •  Why do I get the feeling... (4.00)
      I have this creeping feeling that things are about to get ugly in this country.

      How quickly can this escalate?  I have a sneaking suspicion we are about to find out.

      Thanks to Professor Lakoff for posting.

      My book Growing Up Red is now available at,, and

      by ColdFusion04 on Fri Apr 15, 2005 at 06:35:26 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Before everyone gets too exercised... (none)

        Let's plan this one out.  Let's think a few moves ahead.

        Does an outcry serve our needs?  More important, is it best to attack Frist from the "faith" flank?

        I'm not saying it's not a good strategy.  Lord knows, I am as awestruck and disturbed by this serious attack on our Constitution and way of life as anyone here.  I'm just saying that we should map this thing out.  This is chess.  These people have obviously given much thought to this.  

        Remember that this is the same group that came up with "shock and awe."  Their entire program from PermaWar to national security to domestic policy is aimed at enriching themselves and their cronies and consolidating power.  Meanwhile, they have excelled at creating "Weapons of Mass Distraction."

        How do we counter these attacks?  I think that a faith element is part of it, but perhaps we need also a supplemental or correlative attack that doesn't talk about faith.  


        A thought: Isn't this really about the Constitution vs. the Republicans (Bush, Cheney, Frist, Delay)?

        Shouldn't we begin to pin this crap on the GOP?  They are fomenting this.  It is their leaders who are saying these things.  Why isn't Bush decrying this?  Why don't we call him out to denounce this?  Doesn't the fucking President believe in the Constitution?  If not, impeach him.

        Just some food for thought.  I'm not saying the Professor's approach is incorrect, I just think we should not be drawn into this faith war.  Because that type of Crusade is what they may want.  

        Reid, for one, has played his cards well so far, and I would hope we can all learn from that.  I would also ask us to all look a few moves ahead.  And communicate are ideas!

        •  strategery (none)
          The most important thing we can do is activate   religious Democrats, unite them, and make them loud.
          •  I agree this important. (none)
            I don't know if it's the most important.  

            I think many posts here show that Americans have a kind of secular theology.  That is, they believe in our Constitution as a faith.  I know I do.  

            I think the strongest appeal is to the Constitution vs. the Rethugs.

        •  The key is to replace the frame, instead (4.00)
          You can not "counter" a frame.  You can only build up another frame.  Unfortunately, frames are not easy to build up.  The religious progressive frame is a valid frame that does not reinforce theirs.  The secular progressive frame does reinforce theirs.  That is why we need to build a religious progressive frame, so that people (like yourself) might see it.    In other words we have to show that there is a different, valid progressive frame for religion.  If it comes across as simply a weaker version of their ideas that would be a failure.  You're right.  But if we can communicate TRUE VALUES progressives who follow Christ ACTUALLY HOLD, and why they are DIFFERENT than conservative ideas, we will have won.  If we just say, "we're religious, too" we will fail.
          •  Quote Matthew 23 (see above) (4.00)
            and you have ample grounds for saying, "We're Christians -- and THEY'RE NOT."

            I know, I know. Progressives remember history, so they understand all too well the bad results that can come to pass when two religious groups start feuding in public over who is right about God and who isn't.

            But this isn't a fight you can avoid. They have already laid loud claim to the right to speak for all religion! Or, well, if you press them on it and mention other religions... at least all of Christianity.

            You have the choice of ceding that ground to them by default, or fighting back. I think it's time to break out the old word from earlier rounds of this same fight, and apply it to them: Heresy. They are heretics. They are misrepresenting Jesus to the world. That is a terrible sin -- you have to either blast them for it, or... let them get away with their false claim.

            You're absolutely right -- it isn't enough to say "We're religious, too." It isn't even good enough to say, "We've got a better frame for religion." That's still defensive, and they will counter by saying you're weak, you've fallen away, you're not devoted enough to Christianity, and you don't understand what God wants. Then what do you say? "You meanies! We are not weak!"??

            They are wrong. They are doing exactly what Jesus said not to do. They pervert the message of Jesus and imperil the souls of anyone they fool into following them. And -- it is worth mentioning -- this is what Revelations means by the Anti-Christ.

            They started the fight, but you have numbers on your side, and the Bible, too.

            Massacre is not a family value.

            by Canadian Reader on Sat Apr 16, 2005 at 07:50:36 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

        •  This is not just about Republican and Democrat (none)
          As a Christian, it is offensive to me that they claim a monopoly over the meanign of that term.  It is offensive that they seek to conflate law and the legal process with real religion.

          So, yes, I think it's time to shout from the mountaintops that I want no part of their vision of Christianity BECAUSE I am a Christian.

      •  just realized (4.00)
        that April 19th (Waco, OK City 10th anniv) is just around the corner.

        God help us if some individual or group actually follows through on Cornyn or DeLay's calls for vengeance.

        •  You are quite right to bring up OKC (none)
          The 10th anniversary of that dastardly, domestic, right-wing terrorist attack is precisely the time to call out all peace-loving people of faith to insist that our representatives appeal to our better angels.

          The memorial service commemorating the original attack was one of the most compelling events of recent times.  (Much more heartening than the "Onward Christian Soldier" chorus at the 9/11 memorial.)  Maybe we can appeal to C-SPAN to replay their coverage of the OKC service as the day approaches, to remind us of what unites us.

          Prof. Lakoff, thanks for class.  

        •  well, *somebody* will need it... (none)
          God help us if some individual or group actually follows through on Cornyn or DeLay's calls for vengeance.

          If this happens, I don't think it's going to be us that the Wall Street wing of the GOP is going to be going to with a demand "GET YOUR CRAZIES UNDER CONTROL NOW!"

          Things are getting to the point where politics is likely to make America no longer a good place to do business. If the court system breaks down, how are corporations going to sue each other?

          How long before America's creditors start getting REALLY nervous?

          Of course, the other side may not care about little things like the American economy.

          Looking for intelligent energy policy alternatives? Try here.

          by alizard on Fri Apr 15, 2005 at 10:01:19 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

        •  It's the Date of the LA riots as well! n/t (none)
        •  Lexington & Concord (none)
          April 19 is also the 230th anniversary of The Shot Heard 'Round The World.
      •  You know,... (none)
        ...I've felt this coming for a while--there's a dark momentum here...and it ain't gonna be pretty...
    •  Ha! Would Al Sharpton mind standing in... (none)
      when Prof. Lakoff goes out on vacation? We've got ourselves a couple of great wordsmiths there.

      And indeed, let's hope that the real Christians will begin standing up to those confused, frightend fanatics and the wolves that shepard them.

  •  The first time I understood the why (none)
    of what has happened to the political landscape in my country was this week, after I finished elephants.  It was an awakening, thank you, at long last I have direction.
  •  I don't know if I've seen a diary (none)
    Rise so high so fast with so little comment.

    Are we all afraid it is an imposter?  Is someone checking?

    Great idea, either way.

    ---- Take a pill or talk?----

    by apotropaic on Fri Apr 15, 2005 at 05:37:13 PM PDT

  •  can we say all this (4.00)
    in 25 words or less?  Framing is helpful to wrap our arms around the issues, but we shouldn't risk overthinking.  This outrage is crystal clear, and we can respond quite effectively with our own simple,laser-sharp points -- this is not the time for the Queensbury Rules!

    (EG:  How DARE these people make such RIDICULOUS accusations?  Can they even make them with a straight face?  We resisted tyranny over 200 years ago, and we will do it again!)


    •  Will this do? (4.00)
      When Hitler attacked the Jews ... I was not a Jew, therefore, I was not concerned. And when Hitler attacked the Catholics, I was not a Catholic, and therefore, I was not concerned. And when Hitler attacked the unions and the industrialists, I was not a member of the unions and I was not concerned. Then, Hitler attacked me and the Protestant church--and there was nobody left to be concerned.

      Or maybe this...

      Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or  bridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.
      •  The problem is... (none)
        that Frist et al. are making exactly the same point.

        That is to say, they labor under the certainty that it is those pinko, Dem-appointed activist judges that are "coming for" Christians in this country.  Amazing:  you can hold each and every branch of government and still portray yourself as a victim.

        What Dems need to do is to defamiliarize this notion of "people of faith."  Lakoff's idea is well along the right track here.  Martin Luther King is just about the most potent symbol we could have of how central progressivism is to the notion of Christian faith in this country.

        Nothing requires a greater effort of thought than arguments to justify the rule of nonthought. -- Milan Kundera

        by Dale on Sat Apr 16, 2005 at 09:32:48 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  yes -- and recognize who are allies are and aren't (none)
        Yes, this is a passage I was thinking of too.  It needs to be updated.  The complacency and ongoing Democratic urge to tack rightward have opened the door to this unsurprising development.

        "When the Senate attacked the courts 99-0, voting that atheists' children should say the Lord's name in vain - "under god" - every day, I was not concerned because I'm a spiritual person, and those words mean so much more to fundamentalists than they do to me.

        When they attacked Howard Stern and Janet Jackson and outlawed `indecent speech' I was silent, because I have never sought to appeal to the prurient interest.

        When they were imprisoning and torturing Arabs and Muslims without charges in Brooklyn, Cuba, and around the world, I was silent because I am not a Muslim.

        We need to wake up that very few Democrats are fighting on our behalf in any of these battles.  This is not Democrats vs Republicans; it's the majority of Americans vs the majority of both parties.  If more people don't start to get this in places like dKos, we'll miss our remaining hopes and our greatest opportunities.

  •  Good idea (none)
    Thanks for telling us about this. I will be sure to pass it along to the people at my church.

    Our "What now?" group (the positive response that grew out of our collective "WTF?!" after the November election) is meeting again this Sunday after church. I'm sure they would be interested in this.

    Last week in the bulletin, there was a full-page insert about the Rally at the Statehouse, because as Christians, most of us thought it was very immoral that services to the "least of these" were on the chopping block.

  •  heh (4.00)
    I kinda feel left out being an athiest and all.

    Let the Democratic Reformation Begin

    by Pounder on Fri Apr 15, 2005 at 05:46:53 PM PDT

    •  But we can march too (4.00)
      Just like you don't have to be female to be a feminist.

      I will lock step and march alongside anyone who shares my social values.  If they share my social values, they won't mind that I'm an atheist.

      •  Good point (4.00)
        I was feeling the same way. I'm not an atheist, I'm agnostist. But as far as most right wing people are concerned, it's the same thing. But I do strongly support people's right to worship freely and without government coercion.   I think that a lot of religous people don't realize that the fundamentalist political movement is not just trying to promote religion in general - they want their religion to be part of every American's daily life.  Freedom from religion doesn't just mean the right to be an atheist or agnostic, it also includes the right to be free of coercion to subscribe a government sponsored religion, the right to worship in a manner of your choice.  
        •  Yes, it's high time for an alliance (4.00)
          Very few secular progressives in the 1960s would have hesitated to join a Civil Rights march just because it was sponsored by a church. They wouldn't have gotten huffy at a United Farm Workers action if supportive priests were there to celebrate Mass. There's a positive sense of "fellow traveller" that needs to be reclaimed here.

          We're all in this one together.

          •  Yes and I would (none)
            There's a positive sense of "fellow traveller" that needs to be reclaimed here.

             beg the Christians to remember that there are many, many people part of this alliance who are neither secular or Christian.
            Please read the AU's webpage and the Interfaith Alliance's and pay particular attention to their partial list of 65 faith traditions fighting this particular fight.

            Also, any lawyers here with some time to donate, American's United would appreciate your help.


            "...the definition of a gaffe in Washington is somebody who tells the truth but shouldn't have." Howard Dean

            by colleen on Sat Apr 16, 2005 at 02:55:21 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

      •  AMEN Sister..or.... Brother.... (none)
        we ALL have to stick together!  After becoming completely frustrated by our local democratic "club," I found that joining our local chapter of NOW to be just what I needed to connect with others who share my values.  We have several men who are active in our group.  I am also very excited to learn that there is lots of talk of a Unitarian Universalist church organizing in our small community.  I have a difficult time articulating my religious/spiritual beliefs; I'm not a full blown atheist, but lean toward agnostic.  However, when I see the thousands of varieties of flowers, I know there is a higher power.  It is a beautiful day in NE Missouri! :)

        Howard Dean was right, and I am proud to say, so was I. Told ya' so! ;)

        by kbadsinmisery on Sat Apr 16, 2005 at 05:43:25 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  UU's take atheist (4.00)
      Be a UU if you want a church. :)

      Atheists are welcome.

      •  Unitarian Jihad (4.00)
        Courtesy of Jon Carroll from the SF Chronicle

        The following is the first communique from a group calling itself Unitarian Jihad. It was sent to me at The Chronicle via an anonymous spam remailer. I have no idea whether other news organizations have received this communique, and, if so, why they have not chosen to print it. Perhaps they fear starting a panic. I feel strongly that the truth, no matter how alarming, trivial or disgusting, must always be told. I am pleased to report that the words below are at least not disgusting:

        Greetings to the Imprisoned Citizens of the United States. We are Unitarian Jihad. There is only God, unless there is more than one God. The vote of our God subcommittee is 10-8 in favor of one God, with two abstentions. Brother Flaming Sword of Moderation noted the possibility of  there being no God at all, and his objection was noted with love by the secretary.

        Greetings to the Imprisoned Citizens of the United States! Too long has your attention been waylaid by the bright baubles of extremist thought. Too long have fundamentalist yahoos of all religions (except Buddhism -- 14-5 vote, no abstentions, fundamentalism subcommittee) made your head hurt. Too long have you been buffeted by angry people who think that God talks to them. You have a right to your moderation! You have the power to be calm! We will use the IED
        of truth to explode the SUV of dogmatic expression!

        People of the United States, why is everyone yelling at you??? Whatever happened to ... you know, everything? Why is the news dominated by nutballs saying that the Ten Commandments have to be tattooed inside the eyelids of every American, or that Allah has told them to kill Americans in order to rid the world of Satan, or that Yahweh has instructed them to go live wherever they feel like, or that Shiva thinks bombing mosques is a great idea? Sister Immaculate Dagger of Peace notes for the record that we mean no disrespect to Jews, Muslims, Christians or Hindus. Referred back to the committee of the whole for further discussion.

        We are Unitarian Jihad. We are everywhere. We have not been born again, nor have we sworn a blood oath. We do not think that God cares what we read, what we eat or whom we sleep with. Brother Neutron Bomb of Serenity notes for the record that he does not have a moral code but is nevertheless a good person, and Unexalted Leader Garrote of Forgiveness stipulates that Brother Neutron Bomb of Serenity is a good person, and this is to be reflected in the minutes.
        Beware! Unless you people shut up and begin acting like grown-ups with brains enough to understand the difference between political belief and personal faith, the Unitarian Jihad will begin a series of terrorist-like actions. We will take over television studios, kidnap so-called commentators and broadcast calm, well-reasoned discussions of the issues of the day. We will not try for "balance" by hiring fruitcakes; we will try for balance by hiring non-ideologues who have carefully thought through the issues.

        We are Unitarian Jihad. We will appear in public places and require people to shake hands with each other. (Sister Hand Grenade of Love suggested that we institute a terror regime of mandatory hugging, but her motion was not formally introduced because of lack of a quorum.) We will require all lobbyists, spokesmen and campaign managers to dress like trout in public. Televangelists will be forced to take jobs as Xerox repair specialists. Demagogues of all stripes will be required to read Proust out loud in prisons.

        We are Unitarian Jihad, and our motto is: "Sincerity is not enough." We have heard from enough sincere people to last a lifetime already. Just because you believe it's true doesn't make it true. Just because your motives are pure doesn't mean you are not doing harm. Get a dog, or comfort someone in a nursing home, or just feed the birds in the park. Play basketball. Lighten up. The world is not out to get you, except in the sense that the world is out to get everyone. Brother Gatling Gun of Patience notes that he's pretty sure the world is out to get him because everyone laughs when he says he is a Unitarian. There were murmurs of assent around the room, and someone suggested that we buy some Congress members and really stick it to the Baptists. But this was deemed against Revolutionary Principles, and Brother Gatling Gun of Patience was remanded to the Sunday Flowers and Banners committee.

        People of the United States! We are Unitarian Jihad! We can strike without warning. Pockets of reasonableness and harmony will appear as if from
        nowhere! Nice people will run the government again! There will be coffee and cookies in
        the Gandhi Room after the revolution.

        Piss off Frank Luntz: don't use Republican issue frames like "Social Security crisis."

        by DC Pol Sci on Fri Apr 15, 2005 at 06:56:05 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  Um, atheists don't want churches (4.00)
        That's kind of the point.

        Not that I have anything against those post-Christian UUs or anything.

      •  Speaking of UU, Lakoff, and Sunday the 24th... (none)
        On Sunday, April 24th, the All Souls Peace Task Force is hosting Lakoff's "How Democrats and Prgressives Can Win," at the All Souls Unitarian Church in New York City. The event begins at 12:45.

        "It is a common delusion that you make things better by talking about them." - Dame Rose Macaulay

        by Zackpunk on Fri Apr 15, 2005 at 11:14:04 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  You're not a citizen, you know (4.00)
      Too bad this sort of thing from Poppy never received the same public outrage that anything supposedly "anti-Christian" does...

      When George Bush was campaigning for the presidency, as incumbent vice-president, one of his stops was in Chicago, Illinois, on August 27, 1987. At O'Hare Airport he held a formal outdoor news conference. There Robert I. Sherman, a reporter for the American Atheist news journal, fully accredited by the state of Illinois and by invitation a participating member of the press corps covering the national candidates, had the following exchange with then-Vice-President Bush.

       Sherman: What will you do to win the votes of the Americans who are atheists?

      Bush: I guess I'm pretty weak in the atheist community. Faith in God is important to me.

      Sherman: Surely you recognize the equal citizenship and patriotism of Americans who are atheists?

      Bush: No, I don't know that atheists should be considered as citizens, nor should they be considered patriots. This is one nation under God.

      Sherman (somewhat taken aback): Do you support as a sound constitutional principle the separation of state and church?

      Bush: Yes, I support the separation of church and state. I'm just not very high on atheists.

      In case this really is the George Lakoff's blog, I suppose I should behave myself and avoid speculation about what George Senior was "very high on"...

    •  Not left out (4.00)
      I've become convinced that, if there is a god of any sort, it's not the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob. That god does not exist. If He did, He would long ago have struck down the millions who do evil and claim to be doing "God's Word".

      Though I see no reason to claim that there is a personal god, I admire and respect folks who follow the teachings of Jesus. The theocons who have infested the Republican party are not such followers and need to be called on their anti-Christian behavior again and again. This is not about judging, it is about their behavior which betrays them.

      Republicans are poor stewards of America's government.

      by freelunch on Fri Apr 15, 2005 at 06:22:02 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Fake it. (4.00)
      This is important, we need to use their weapons.
    •  You're not left out (4.00)
      It's your government that's been hijacked, not your faith or lack thereof.

      These freaks forgot the fundamental lesson we learned in earliest grade school: the Pilgrims came here to escape religious persecution, not being able to worship as they chose or did not choose in England.  The authors of the Constitution respected this essential right, forbidding government from establishing a state religion.

      Jump in, it's your government, too.

    •  The Interfaith Alliance (4.00)
      welcomes atheists and agnostics as well.

      It's a great organization doing great work.

      The picture is from a vigil I participated in at a Denver mosque a few days after September 11.  We joined hands and circled the mosque in solidarity, and clergy of several faiths spoke, sang and prayed.  It was a wonderful experience.

      I'm not a believer, but my activism often requires me to spend time in churches.  There's much to respect.

      The Interfaith Alliance doesn't have anything on its website about April 24th yet, but I'm sure it will take part.

    •  If you're an atheist (none)
      at least learn to spell it right! :)

      "What in the wide, wide world of sports is a-goin' on here?" -- Slim Pickens in "Blazing Saddles"

      by AaronInSanDiego on Fri Apr 15, 2005 at 11:02:13 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Welcome, Dr. Lakoff! (4.00)
    Good to have you here. I was just reading about this effort the organizer's websites. Hope you'll stop by my "Dems Represent!" diary and let us know what you believe in!

    The UCC: to believe is to care, to care is to do. Also, they have cookies.

    by pastordan on Fri Apr 15, 2005 at 05:49:22 PM PDT

  •  This Lakoff guy... (4.00)
    ...he may be on to something!


    Politics: It's all fun and games until somone dies.

    by advisorjim on Fri Apr 15, 2005 at 05:49:43 PM PDT

  •  Thank you. (4.00)
    Wonderful idea.  My blood pressure just went down to survivable levels.
  •  (may I quote myself?) (4.00)
    I think it would be better named as Freedom & Justice Sunday, because it grabs the F-word away from bushco, and the word "social" will get the adversaries linking it to "socialism"

    "....a relative newbie (user ID in the 18,000 range).. "

    by Miss Devore on Fri Apr 15, 2005 at 05:54:42 PM PDT

  •  In the limit... (4.00)
    the fundamentalist Christians will be much more forgiving of a federal government unwilling to play religious favorites.

     I imagine a U.S. of A. many decades removed in which the Christians are no longer a majority.

    This is not a wish or hope of mine... just a realization of the real consequences of "globalization" the economic libertarians offer.

    Hey hey, ho ho, irresponsible corporatism and social intolerance have got to go! Hey hey, ho ho!

    by kfractal on Fri Apr 15, 2005 at 05:54:47 PM PDT

  •  Frist et al. are positing this... (4.00)
    in classic "faulty dilemma" terms.
    Only two choices:

    A. I am religious (thus support nuclear option)
    B. I am a sinner heathen (don't support nuclear option).

    Do they think we are all so dumb?

    Warning:  Rhetorical Question alert, response not needed.

  •  Hear, hear! (4.00)
    And every progressive religious person ought to contact their local newspaper, radio station, TV station and try and get something printed -- or be interviewed -- for that day.

    This has got to STOP. Now. Today has finally done it for me. I wasn't even as alarmed at the invasion of Iraq as I have been this past week. If we don't preserve the Constitution and get rid of these theocrats, there will be a dozen Iraq-type invasions in the near future.

    We've GOT to stop it NOW. For the sake of our world and our children's future.

    (And I think it's SOOOO cool that Prof. Lakoff is posting here! Welcome!)

    •  The most profound statement in this diary: (none)
      "We must respond."

      It seems like we are on a new level now -- we finally have have the means, organization and will to counteract what these lunatics are spewing.  

      I will be writing letters and making calls this weekend.

      (Now if we could just get that cable network, or at least one sane voice on cable news...)

  •  Thank you! (4.00)
    For taking action.  For getting the organizing going.  For seeing this threat for what it is.

    Every thinking Kossack with a few minutes to spare to support this effort should.

    I would also be interested in your perspective on the Delay/Frist endgame.  What are they after here?

    Here's my view (from a previous comment):

    "This is a well-designed and well-thought out rollout following Schiavo.  I would guess that it was supposed to roll out right after Schiavo, but was postponed because some were having second thoughts after seeing the polling.  It might also have been retooled a bit.
    However, since DeLay's "apology", it has been clear that the Rethugs are proceeding full steam ahead.

    What does this mean?

    (a) Frist WILL exercise the nuclear option.
    (b) The nuclear option is only the first step.
    (c) The second step, I believe, is DeLay's "re-structuring" of the judiciary.
    (d) This re-structuring will be sold as "justice" and "reform."
    (e) This re-structuring will shrink the size of the Supreme Court to 5 justices.  It will consolidate the 11 Circuit Courts to 3.  It will eradicate many District Courts, and will limit the jurisdiction of Federal Courts to hear only criminal cases and corporate disputes.
    (f) The net effect: total fucking chaos and destability.  A Constitutional crisis.
    (g) The Marshals will then begin mass arrests and roundups.    

    The important thing to realize here is that time is on the Rethugs side.  They can do all this crazy radical shit, and we have to wait for the courts to address it.  Yes, there will be court challenges to this.  But, just as with Guantanamo and the Hamdi and Padilla cases, they will take YEARS to resolve.  Meantime, the Rethugs power grab remains in effect.

    If you recall, the Rethugs were looking for RADICAL precedents with the Hamdi and Padilla cases.  These were American citizens.  The Rethugs were arguing for the right to lock up ANYONE on the President's say-so at ANYTIME.  And, who repelled this attack on our liberty?  The Federal Courts.  Now, it's payback time.

    This is serious shit.  I do not think Dems (or many others) see this coming.  Yes, Reid is aware of the Religious Right, but no one thinks it is going to get this radical.  They are wrong.

    We need to formulate a plan to counter this NOW.  I think it needs to be a convention in a city.  It needs to happen NOW.  We need to get Kossacks together and to begin to do something, because no one is going to do it for us.  And it has to start NOW."

    Thank you again for launching this response SO IMMEDIATELY to try and repel this threat to our great nation.

    •  I am wrong... (none)
      ...all the time. But I really feel like you've got it right, Max. You've described what I've felt as a dark momentum. (See strand -- not really a thread -- above)
      So many of us folks here keep asking for direction, for guidance. And George, I'm sure, is a great guy. Loved his "Elephant" book, too. But here it is, plain and simple: TALK TO OTHER PEOPLE. It's that simple. You can do in on a train, you can do it in a plane, you can do it on the square, you can do it anywhere. (OK, Doc Seuss, you can leave my body now.) Tell everyone you know what's going on. Things will fall into place from there. Those folks will talk tom others and organizations and leaders and workers naturally follow. JUST TALK!!! We are our own best weapons!
      A convention's a good idea, Max--if the mass arrests, beatings and shootings are allowed to be televised, it will rock the world.
  •  Prof. Lakoff, (4.00)
    A few weeks ago, one of our fellow Kossacks, Hudson, wrote a diary about what he called "fencing," a concept related to "framing."  You may have read it (some of us forwarded the link to the RockRidge Institute).  I was hoping we could hear what you think about it.  The diary is here:
    Framing vs. Fencing

    Thanks for your great work!

  •  Great to Hear It ... (none)
    I'm ready.  Wallet open.
  •  Meaning no disrespect to the master of framing, (4.00)
    We want to protect life all the way from birth up until the edge of death.

    I'd rather "support the right of each individual to make medical choices." I'm pretty sure that's the basis of the right-to-die. The wingnuts want to "define life." Science can't tell us this, so it's still a choice to be made individually.

    I don't want them defining mine, and  I think it's a potential trap for the Democratic party.

  •  from thermonuclear to Theo-nuclear (4.00)

    Halley's comet and a republican telling the truth share a common trait. It happens twice in a lifetime if you are lucky.

    by primate on the left on Fri Apr 15, 2005 at 06:14:14 PM PDT

  •  Buddhist Peace Fellowship (4.00)
    I was glad to see the Buddhist Peace Fellowship is included as one of the co-sponsors of

    It is important that people of all beliefs, and those with no beliefs, to come together to defeat this outrageous attempt by the radical right to take over our country.

    For hate is never conquered by hate. Hate is conquered by love. This is an eternal law. - Buddha

    by LynChi on Fri Apr 15, 2005 at 06:16:35 PM PDT

    •  Exactly... (4.00)
      the Constitution protects believers of the myriad religions from that one religion practiced by the majority... not the no-religion group from the Christian religion.  

      Hey hey, ho ho, irresponsible corporatism and social intolerance have got to go! Hey hey, ho ho!

      by kfractal on Fri Apr 15, 2005 at 06:25:56 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Of course the no-religion (4.00)
          group is protected by the constitution and mainly from the Christians.  Freedom of religion has to mean freedom from religion.

        "My will is easy to decide, for I have nothing to divide" Joe Hill

        by slick riddles on Fri Apr 15, 2005 at 08:57:08 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  Even more specifically (none)
        The Constitution, Article VI, Clause 3 states:

        The Senators and Representatives before mentioned, and the Members of the several State Legislatures, and all executive and judicial Officers, both of the United States and of the several States, shall be bound by Oath or Affirmation, to support this Constitution; but no religious Test shall ever be required as a Qualification to any Office or public Trust under the United States.

        I thought Frist swore to uphold and defend the Constitution - I'd say he's coming pretty close to violating his oath.

        "Christianity neither is, nor ever was a part of the common law." Thomas Jefferson

        by thebes on Sat Apr 16, 2005 at 05:57:44 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  I can't decide if I'm enraged or feeling hopeless. (4.00)
    In many respects, this is the last straw.  Where was the outcry when nutbags gathered in Washington last weekend to tacitly endorse judicial assassination?  Where?  I don't watch that fucking television, but I do read newspapers.  So where was it?  In what America does Terri Schiavo become Ground Zero for every Christian psycho on the planet?  In what America are laws passed and signed in the dead of night that exploit the personal tragedy of one individual?  In what American are U.S. Senators diagnosing vegetative patients based on heavily edited videotape for political gain?  In what America does being a real Christian mean being a Republican?

    In my Democratic corner of New England that the right-wing zealots hate so much,  I'm safer than most.  But I am really beginning to believe my own post-election rhetoric:  the Grand Experiment is a failure.  It's over, people.  That's a wrap. More than half of the voting American public believes in a perverse distortion of the founding principles of this nation.  Black is now white.  There is no reasoning with people who simply  believe.

    And people wonder why organized religion is hated so fucking much.  

    Deval Patrick for Governor of Massachusetts

    by lightiris on Fri Apr 15, 2005 at 06:16:40 PM PDT

    •  If they destroy our perfect union, (none)
      If the theocrats are destroying our perfect union, then we need to seriously consider what we are going to do.  
    •  Lightiris, I've seen plenty of outrage. (none)
      And even more desperation.  The problem is figuring out how to transform those reactions into something that will help.

      I can't wait for Social Justice Sunday!

    •  Hope is coming (4.00)
      because 60-80% of the public was outraged with the Terri caper, despite the 24-7 Fox propaganda. W's polling is tanking as is the congress led by these crooks.

      Was Terri the tipping point? I don't know. Being a UU and a minister at that, I try to embody and preach the words from John Murray, a founding Universalist minister:

      "Go out into the highways and by-ways.
      Give the people something of your new vision.

      You may possess a small light,
      but uncover it, let it shine,
      use it in order to bring more light and understanding
      to the hearts and minds of men and women.

      Give them not hell, but hope and courage,
      preach the kindness and
      everlasting love of God."

      Murray was countering the hellfire and damnation kind of preaching that Jonathan Edwards was so good at. It would seem to me that Frist, DeLay et al are the modern political equivalents. I would hope that the people--aside from the 20% radical fringe which was exposed a couple of weeks ago--are looking for the message of hope and courage. If it needs to come by way of frames and fences, so be it, but we need to use every method at our disposal to carry that message.

      What 2004 taught us, if nothing else, is that we DO have to have a message, "Give the people something of your new vision" said Murray. I don't think the dems did that.  Lakoff has given us much to think about and I am ever so grateful for that. Both in "elephant" and in Moral Politics he does begin to spell out that vision. Harry Reid, Nancy Pelosi, Howard Dean et al have made a start.

      Harry has been a pretty good poker player so far, but I agree that this is possibly more like chess. For so much of what the wingers have done, not responding has been OK, but we can't build a movement from just watching the repugs make fools of themselves. We do need to start proclaiming a vision.

      The newest bumper sticker I have just put on my car is this:

      "Patriots Defend the Constitution"

      We need to defend the constitution because if we do not, all will truly be lost. The elements of creeping fascism are becoming increasingly apparent. Perhaps our vision ought to start from there. As several posters have quoted the more salient points, there is a wealth of beauty in its simplicity.

      Without a vision, the people perish. So it's time for us to really work on that vision thing. I think if we can put it out there, the people will follow.

      Sorry for the ramblings, but there is SO much going on on all fronts that its hard to know where to start.

      "Tikkun Olam (to heal and repair the world) You are not obligated to complete the work, but neither are you free to abandon it" Rabbi Tarfun

      by RevDeb on Sat Apr 16, 2005 at 07:56:41 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Welcome and thank you for posting (4.00)
    I want so much to do something about this; when I woke up and looked at the NY Times online, I almost burst a gasket!  I went to post it here, and saw that someone else had just posted, so I just commented, but was still disturbed.  As the day went on, I saw I was not alone.

    When the Majority Leader of the US senate, who is in the same party as the President of the United States, says that the opposition party is "against people of faith" DO NOT FOR ONE MINUTE think they are saying it with the express permission of the President of the United States.  Bush needs to be called on immediately to either stand by these statements about democrats like "thieves in the night" stealing away the wackos religious freedoms, or to strongly repudiate them. Hey, Bush, you are either with the religous wackos or against them! Make up your fricking mind!

    I am so upset/angry/furious/insulted/royally pissed off about this that I don't know what to do with myself.  I could march from NY to Washington DC this week, on my own, screaming all of the way. Give me the word: I'll do it.

  •  Oh! My achin' right knee! It's really you! (4.00)
    Hot damn.  I'm a fright. (Primps, fluffs hair.)

    Well!!  How about a cup of coffee?  We can make some plans.

  •  Oh my! (4.00)
    Dr. Lakoff, I'm not much on framing --- but I simply must take this opportunity to tell you that whole conceptual metaphor slash cognitive linguistics thing is simply rocking! AFAIC, you all have nailed it!
  •  I hope we will do more... (4.00)
    than just react. If we react to their issues--even if it's in our frame--that's still talking about their issues. We need to find a language for our own spiritual and religious issues--a language that is inclusive, welcoming, and nonideological. The way to win a debate with an ideology is not to talk about an opposing ideology, but to talk about a compelling vision based on values. Otherwise, we risk becoming what we say we oppose.
    •  The core of the issue! (none)
      a compelling vision.

      How could we lose, when their real God is money!

      If they are so patriotic they should feel honored to pay taxes to help sustain the country they love!

      People vote for sunshine, not for gloom and doom!

      by missliberties on Fri Apr 15, 2005 at 08:08:00 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Main Blog Post (none)
    This diary needs a broader audience.  I recommend that it be made a main page post.  Important stuff here.

    God does not vote Republican...or Democrat for that matter.

  •  Dear Lord (4.00)
    the gods are being very confusing right now.  Here's the deal, I'm a liberal, if I am still allowed to pray please give me absolutely no sign.  Ok, deal. In gratitude, I present you this offering of cookies and milk. If you want me to eat them for you, give me no sign. Thy will be done!

    Homer Simpson

  •  Welcome Dr. Lakoff (none)
    This is a perfect issue to jump on. Thanks for posting your diary.
  •  Any plans for a swarm on that KY church? (4.00)
    With signs bearing "Social Justice Sunday." And lapel pens bearing "Progressive Christian for Social Justice."

    Steal their thunder on location!

    To Whatever It Takes ... towit ... to get rid of BushCo.

    by towit on Fri Apr 15, 2005 at 06:28:39 PM PDT

  •  Protest Sign Idea (4.00)
    Just because Jesus died for your sins
    doesn't mean you can commit more!

    Especially in His name

  •  The thing about this ... (4.00)
    ... is that it has rekindled my own, personal spiritual foundation. Lapsed but strong, and not Christian. Original, agnostic Buddhism with a reverence for the land and the power of stories. And Chinese-style sweeping of my ancestors' (in my case, my grandparents') graves in the Spring.

    These politicians are sticking their noses into religion. It's not going to work if liberals and progressives start carrying water, and April 24 in America is a good time and place to do so. We have a much deeper well than they do. Martin Luther King tapped into it, and we can too.

    In the long run it's not really a fair fight, but they've brought this upon themselves.

  •  Mr. Lakoff--please join the democracy cell project (4.00)
    And everyone else here is welcome to come to. It is an educational site with the mission of activating and empowering grassroots locally.  

    It teaches how to frame, how to write op eds, how to be effective activists, and it even has a book club. It's about empowerment and bringing back our democracy from the brink of destruction.

    The first book was Lakoff's book Don't Think of an Elephant.  The second book was Howard Zinn's You Can't be Neutral on a Moving Train, and the next book is Wallis's God's Politics.

    Join the club and even pass the book around locally.

  •  How about this for a frame (4.00)
    Get your phony religious hands off of my Constitution - now.

    "If you are not outraged, you are not paying attention."

    by adigal on Fri Apr 15, 2005 at 06:39:16 PM PDT

  •  We need the address of the Mega Church (4.00)
    I think there should be a giant candle light vigil outside the "MegaChurch" in Kentucky as the American Taliban hold their radical assault on our consitiution.

    Just imagine 100k people of faith gathered outside thier temple of intollerance burning candles and demonstrating true, honest values of faith and fidelity and solidarity with our Consititution and our traditions.

    Surely someone will lead this protest.  What moderate Republican or Centerist Democrat will take up this challenge?  

    Publish their address and dates and times and call on every person of faith, to show up and demonstrate we won't allow our faith and future to be hijacked these Radical Cleric of the American Taliban and the pandering politicians that are willing to sell out our values to these fantics.

    the redical centerist

    •  That church is not in a nice part of town (none)
      That is, not one nice to progressives.  I grew up on  another end of Louisville.  That church is in an area that (at least 10 or 15 years ago) was covered in pawn shops, buy here - pay here used car lots, and more churches.  One guy was trying to build the biggest statue of Jesus in the world (Statue of Liberty-scale) in that area at one point;  guess he ran out of funding.  I'd be a little fearful of planting myself as a protester in the middle of it.

      But if anyone's interested in researching a little further, here's your start:

      •  what? (none)
        i don't know where you grew up (i'm from the highlands) but neither church is in a bad area of town...

        jah bless america

        by biggb23 on Fri Apr 15, 2005 at 08:15:37 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Fegenbush Ln ain't so hot (none)
          Unfortunately I grew up in the Hurstbourne Ln 'burbs (also not so friendly to progressives).  You're in a sweet spot.

          My perspective, all those years ago, was that this area is one populated by racist, homophobic, and dogma-religious blue-collar folks who vote against their best interests, believing themselves to be true patriots.  Maybe that's just based on the 100 or so people I knew in that area, so I could be wrong.

          I'm nauseated that this event is taking place in Louisville, which I love and believe to be a hip and progressive gem, generally speaking.

  •  Funny.. I don't hear the 10 word re-frmaing here (none)


    Mitch Gore

    Nobody will change America for you, you have to work to make it happen

    by Lestatdelc on Fri Apr 15, 2005 at 06:53:00 PM PDT

  •  Responding to Their Frame? (4.00)
    First, let me say "welcome."  I think you've done the Democratic Party and progressives in general an enormous service by highlighting the importance of effective framing.

    That said, I'm curious about the strategy of responsing to "Justice Sunday" with "Social Justice Sunday."

    The conservatives have clearly put a great deal of preparation into this event, and that preparation has resulted in another simple and viscerally appealing message:  "The filibuster was once abused to protect racial bias, and it is now used against people of faith."

    By necessity, our response has been hastily put together, and I fear it's not nearly as effective.

    As an initial matter, I suspect many people who see our frame will actually confuse it with the Republican frame.

    For those who do note the difference ("social justice" v. "justice"), I wonder if it just fits in with a pre-conceived notion of Democrats being soft.  (Don't get me wrong, I love the phrase "social justice," but I'm skeptical about how much the general public will love it.)

    Plus, our message seems scattered and unfocused, and at times I'm not sure it's accurate.  For example, will we really "brook no government interference in difficult, even agonizing family decisions"?  Isn't that what family courts do every day?  The correct talking point seems to be, "we will brook no interference by politicians . . . ."

    As you say, our response has been put together "in just hours."  Is that really the right approach?  Might it be more effective to spend our energy developing our own frames for our own events?

    Don't get me wrong -- We certainly should come up with a few good talking points to get out to the press in response to this right-wing charade.  But when it comes to organizing our side for a real show of force, shouldn't we do it on our own terms?  

    •  Solid Point (none)
      Conservative/right-wing framing is the product of hundreds of millions of dollars spent annually to test framing and messaging.

      Lakoff has enlightened us on the theory of moral framing; progressives' charge is to develop an insfrastructure to disseminate well tested, values-based messaging.


      If you have been framed, the only response is to reframe.--George Lakoff

      by bobinkc on Sat Apr 16, 2005 at 09:21:37 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Glad to see you here, Professor (none)
    Thank you for posting.  i think you can count on some serious support from us.  You can from me, anyway.  Welcome.

    "Whatever they want the answer is no. Now is not the time to fold, now is the time to up the ante." -- Charles Pierce

    by baba durag on Fri Apr 15, 2005 at 07:03:30 PM PDT

  •  Hey, George! (none)
    Loved your book.  Am a UCB almuna and a big fan of linguistics.  

    But hey, you know, I doubt this assault on the public confidence will win the neocons any sympathy. Today is a day of reckoning for the B*sh adminstration tax cuts.  We've had four (more) years for these tax cuts to kick in, but they haven't, since they were never for "us" in the first place.

    It was real money that we earned and can't spend on our very real personal emergencies.  Instead it will line the pockets of Bush and Cheney's big business colleagues.  Mainly the ones with the no-bid Iraq war contracts.  And, oh shit, I'm not even getting cheaper gasoline for my gas-guzzling SUV out of it. (Just kidding, I drive a 1991 Toyota.)

    All this left-wing activist judges thing is so much more WMD bullshit.  The Weapons of Mass Deception are the extreme right-wing owned media.

    But there are lots and lots of intelligent, democratic, and activist readers on this website.  So I'm glad to see you here Professor Lakoff!

  •  Is there a reputable list of (none)
    born-again members of Congress? A cursory websearch didn't provide one.
  •  This affair is NOT a church social... (none)
    ...nor are they serving sundaes, nor does it have a dang thing to do with justice.

    Three strikes, they're out.

    -- Life is tough: Three out of three die. Now shut up and deal. ~Ring Lardner Jr.

    by Eleftheria on Fri Apr 15, 2005 at 07:37:10 PM PDT

  •  Cool (none)
    Thanks for the call to action!

    This is so important!!!!!!

      The Republicans do not own God and they certainly don't want to share him with the Democrats since their "moral piousness" is their ticket to power.

      Equating attacks against faith with the judicial system? Excuse me? This is way out of the mainstream. What do they want to do replace the constitution with the bible and lawmakers with the clergy?

      I am sick of the right wings moral snobbery!

    My shout! The Republicans do not own God.

    People vote for sunshine, not for gloom and doom!

    by missliberties on Fri Apr 15, 2005 at 08:04:07 PM PDT

  •  which mega church? (none)
    i live in Louisville, Ky and i'd love to know which mega-church this crap is going down at?

    Is it southeast christian, i mean church?

    anyone know?

    •  The event is being held (none)
      at Highview Baptist Church on Fegenbush Lane...not at big as Southeast Christian, but still pretty large.

      So I would love to hear a debate on the most effective counter-event.  Do we try to do something removed from the church, massive gathering of folks with local church leaders who are appalled by the partisan actions of these participating churches?...or do we plan for a candlelight vigil protest with some great signs (Judge not lest ye be judged) outside the church?  Or do we do both or something else?

      •  Lock the men's room doors! n/t (none)

        "We cannot let terriers and rogue nations hold this nation hostile. - W, 09/09/00

        by Bob Love on Fri Apr 15, 2005 at 09:11:14 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  Progressives respond (none)
        In response, to "Justice Sunday" several events have been scheduled in Louisville....

        On Friday at 10:00 a.m. there will be a press conference at Highland Baptist Church - 1101 Cherokee Road

        On Sunday at 2:30 there will be a response (Social Justice Sunday) at Douglas Blvd Christian Church - 2005 Douglass Boulevard - this is being implemented by the Clergy and Laity Network - an interfaith community and will be somewhat spiritual/religious in nature. They have invited several national speakers and are expecting 1000+ in attendance.

        Then at 4:30 on Sunday there will be a response by the local Democratic party outside the courthouse downtown.

        •  Change in location.... (none)
          The 2:30 event has moved to Central Presbyterian Church at 318 W. Kentucky St. Louisville (it is no longer scheduled for the Douglas Loop location)

          CONTACT: Clergy and Laity Network and DriveDemocracy

          Progressive Religious Communities, our leaders and our community friends are gathering to witness:

          OUR OUTRAGE over the attempt by the Family Research Council and its radical Christian Right colleagues to highjack the judicial selection process for their politiclal/theocratic agenda

          OUR DISMAY Senate Majority Leader, Senator Bill Frist, is lending his name and influence to the Family Research Council's claim of universal support from  "people of faith" for its strategy, thereby giving false religious credentials to a thinly veiled political agenda

          OUR POSITIVE COMMITMENT to defend and strengthen our social context in its commitment to fairness for all people, free of biased religious doctrines and prejudiced attitudes which are inimical to a mature religious understanding of the standards of inclusiveness and justice in American life

          The Social Justice Sunday invitation is available at the Building the Beloved Community. Please distribute the invitation to all progressives

  •  Mr. Lakoff: A serious question (none)
    Bluntly put, is this "The South will rise again" in pious language?

    That is the unsettling feeling I'm getting from some very conservative posters I read in another forum.

    Because if it is, I don't think any appeal to reason or faith will have any effect.
    I fear that any appeals to save our Constitution, our democracy, will fall on deaf ears.  

    Please tell me I'm wrong.  I want to be.  

  •  Ummmm, (4.00)
    I honestly think "SOCIAL JUSTICE SUNDAY" has too many negative connotations.

    Many Americans equate the phrase "social justice" with "welfare" (i.e., redistributive wealth programs).  (Honestly, they really do -- it's a hot-button issue with many of my family members and suburban friends/acquaintances.)

    I'd much prefer to see it called "Constitution Sunday" or "Freedom and Liberty Sunday".  As we seem to be engaged in hand-to-hand combat with right-wing lunatics, I think we ought to use our strongest weapons:  Patriotism, love of country, fond feelings for the Founding Fathers, whatever you want to call it.  I suggest lots of American flag imagery!!!  (The Kossack above who suggested "God Bless our Constitution" as a slogan hit the nail on the head!!!)

  •  No one has mentioned (none)
    No one has mentioned why this tactic has been elevated by the Bad Seed Party.

    It's because the last time they used it, accusing Democrats of opposing a far-right-wing Catholic judicial appointee because he was Catholic, they got away with it.  Dems sputtered and fumed but it barely made a ripple in the press.  If it worked okay then, why not use it on a mass scale?

    This is Frist's big putsch for the support of the self-righteous right; he can't win the nomination without it.  And with Rove helping Frist, McCain's campaign will perish again in the south.

    It's all about politics, not at all about religion.  Frist's religion is politics; same for the whole DC one-party crowd.  I think we should keep placing it back into a political perspective.  This is the beginning of a long campaign to see which Republican presidential candidate will grovel soonest and most at the feet of these Bible-warping Pseudo-religious Asswipes.  Frist is just the first out of the gate.  

    "We cannot let terriers and rogue nations hold this nation hostile. - W, 09/09/00

    by Bob Love on Fri Apr 15, 2005 at 09:35:49 PM PDT

  •  Lobbying Group: Stop Vilifying Non-Believers (4.00)
    The Secular Coalition for America (the SCA) is a new lobbying group that has made the separation of church and state its #1 priority.

    In the words of Thomas Jefferson:

    The Clergy, by getting themselves established by law and ingrafted into the machine of government, have been a very formidable engine against the civil and religious rights of man.

    According to their website, the SCA is a new 501(c)(4) organization (they can lobby legislators, but not endorse or promote candidates) sponsored by the American Humanist Association, Atheist Alliance International, Institute for Humanist Studies, Internet Infidels (The Secular Web), Secular Student Alliance, and the Military Association of Atheists and Freethinkers. They promise to address the concerns of individuals whose worldview is naturalistic, whether they self-identify as agnostics, atheists, freethinkers, humanists, or skeptics, as well as others who consider themselves non-religious. Above all else, this means the separation of Church and State.

    Here are some quotes from the SCA website:

    The Coalition also enthusiastically welcomes the participation of religious Americans who share our view that freedom of conscience must extend to people of all faiths and of none.

    [We seek to] promote understanding of, and respect for, nontheistic viewpoints. Amplify and unite the voices of American agnostics, atheists, freethinkers, humanists, secularists, and skeptics -- all the nation's diverse brights (individuals whose worldview is naturalistic). Advocate for the non-religious citizenry as a 30-million strong constituency that is informed about the issues and VOTES. Hold back government support of, and preference toward, religion, especially where it endangers the lives and well-being of innocent children and the needy. Oppose religious discrimination and sponsorship of religion by government chartered organizations. Protect religious freedom for all Americans by preserving the separation of religion and government.

    Position Statement:

    The Secular Coalition for America is committed to promoting reason and science as the most reliable methods for understanding the universe and improving the human condition. Informed by experience and inspired by compassion, we encourage the pursuit of knowledge, meaning, and responsible ethical codes without reference to supernatural forces. We affirm the secular form of government as a necessary condition for the interdependent rights of religious freedom and religious dissent. We come together as national freethought organizations to cooperate in areas of mutual interest and to support each other in our efforts to uphold separation between government and religion for the benefit of all within the nontheistic community. As resources allow, we will actively cooperate in projects that support our position, with priority given to political action initiatives and public relations opportunities.

    Mission Statement:

    The mission of the Secular Coalition for America is to increase the visibility and respectability of nontheistic viewpoints within the larger culture and to protect and strengthen secular government as the best guarantee of freedom for all.

    Check out their website and donate if you feel they are worthy.

    "The man of great wealth owes a peculiar obligation to the State, because he derives special advantages from the mere existence of government" - Teddy Roosevelt

    by mrboma on Fri Apr 15, 2005 at 09:38:23 PM PDT

    •  It's time for "Christians" to decide (4.00)
      Either those who want to identify themselves as "Christian" need to take back their religion from the Pharisees, or we, as the culture, need to totally wall off the "Christians" from both political and cultural influence. The head of ABC News was with Charlie Rose recently talking about how the recent policy of soft-focus coverage of "Christian" issues was meant to connect with the people who don't live on the coasts. Evidently he can't see what a patronizing twit this makes him, and his organization by extension, even in the eyes of the devote. It would be better for ABC - and the rest of our media - to put religion back in the bag of benign neglect.

      Meanwhile, if those who call themselves "Christian" can't turn the present state around, including actively working to remove Frist and the other frauds who disgrace Christ's name from power and office, then it's time - past time - to relegate Christianity to the dust bin, and find new stories to organize society around. Radical action should be taken to try to save Christianity. But if that fails, we need to work to defang and dismantle it instead. It is simply too dangerous for the most consuming nation on Earth to be led by a religion that believes the world but an obstacle to be demolished on the way the Heaven - especially when that nation has our armaments. Barring another reformation more fundamental than the Protestants' from the Papist excesses, it is time for Christianity to pass from its prominence as a framing story for the world stage. Such a reformation may be possible. But do the real Christians care enough about restoring the real message of Christ to carry it out?

  •  Why do we have to (4.00)
    out-Christian the Christians to win this debate?

    IMO, this should not be about which side is holier than thou (altho that's a good point too).  It's about power-mad religious extremists versus rationality and the rule of law.

    In today's world, it should be so easy to make the point:  Airplanes flying into buildings is what you get when you let religious extremists control government.  We should paint them as the American Taliban with all the passion (and a lot more truth) that 'dirtie commie' was once hurled as an epithet against the left.

    Also an important point:  This is not about keeping government out of each person's religious beliefs, or protecting religious expression from government interference.  It is rather about keeping religious influence from corrupting and hijacking our government.  Can't remember who, heard him on Al Franken, historian explained that it was the latter danger that the First Amendment was crafted to guard against.

    •  Why? Because they're NOT Christians. (none)
      And not the least bit holy, either.

      Your point is excellent.

      But they also need to be called on their blasphemous misuse of Christianity. If you let them get away with wrapping Christianity around themselves, then anything you say to criticize them automatically becomes religious persecution, which all Americans, even atheists, are conditioned to think is bad. You can't cede them that ground.

      The only people who have standing to dispute their claim to speak for "Christians" are other Christians. It is good that they have been goaded into finally speaking up. But they need to speak more strongly, and must not be timid about pointing out where this crowd is terribly wrong in the context of Christianity.

      Massacre is not a family value.

      by Canadian Reader on Sat Apr 16, 2005 at 08:30:21 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Agree -- (4.00)
      while I think it would be a good thing for members and leaders of non-fundamentalist "christian" religions to rise up and make their voices heard in opposition to the fundamentalist nutcases working to hijack this country, the call to arms by DEM politicians for them to do so is no better than the GOP doing it.

      From a political strategic perspective it also still puts DEMs on the defensive.  In general people dislike being lectured to.  Wasn't that the rap against Gore?

      DEM politicians would do better to mock the GOP religious nutcases.  "Americans don't want politicians preaching sermons.  They have their religious leaders, churches, synogogues, temples and mosques for that."  "Frist, DeLay and GWB don't want Americans to see how they are bankrupting the country.  That's why they want to talk about God."  "Is the GOP getting ready to blame their bankrupting of America, making the rich richer and the poor poorer on God?"  "Who did the GOP blame for our security failures on 9/11 and invading Iraq to destroy phantom WMD?  US Intelligence.  Who are they going to blame for their fiscal mismanagment?  God?"  "The GOP refuses to do anything about the number one problem facing most Americans -- affordable healthcare.  No wonder they want to distract the country by talking about God."  "Separation of Church and State has served this country well for over two hundred years.  Americans know a winner when they see one."      

      What FDR giveth; GWB taketh away

      by Marie on Sat Apr 16, 2005 at 09:07:30 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Oh no, another (none)
    framing diary!

    JK  ;-)

  •  Libyan Sibyl (none)
    Religion without humanity is very poor human stuff.

    "God is the great house that will hold all his children."

                    --Sojourner Truth

    Our... constitutional heritage rebels at the thought of giving government the power to control men's minds. Thurgood Marshall

    by bronte17 on Fri Apr 15, 2005 at 10:18:11 PM PDT

  •  You can destroy the Republican Party agenda. (none)

    If you don't like what the Republicans have done for the last 10 years and what they plan to do this year then you can help destroy the Republican Party agenda.

    Sign the petition at

  •  Onward (none)
    Onward GOP Taliban...

    Take action every day:

    by JLFinch on Sat Apr 16, 2005 at 12:18:45 AM PDT

  •  Let's remember (none)
    for Frist this is not about faith, it's about power.

    Take action every day:

    by JLFinch on Sat Apr 16, 2005 at 12:21:33 AM PDT

  •  If this response Social Justice Sunday (2.66)
    is about pushing a left-wing, 'progressive' agenda it won't be very effective. And some people (conservatives, moderates) who are against what the Religious Right are trying to do to the courts and the fillibuster, but oppose big gov't, will be driven back over to their side - or to the sideline. It should be bi-partisan and limited to only issues dealing with the Judiciary and church/state.

    Also I really don't see how this has anything to do with being 'racist'. Its bad enough as it is trying to paint Dems as 'against people of faith' but I don't see how it has anything to do with that.

  •  start checking (none)
    for flight info on Orbitz.

    We are all going to have go and particpate in a rally, march, vigil, whatever.

    Take action every day:

    by JLFinch on Sat Apr 16, 2005 at 12:40:56 AM PDT

  •  Social Justice Sunday (none)
    Definitely a religious person.

    Definitely not a right-winger.

    Great fan of "Don't Think Of An Elephant."

    Where do I sign up for Social Justice Sunday?

    We have to win this. Even if Democrats controlled both houses of Congress and the White House, I would favor the use of the filibuster as a tactic.

    Checks and balances, people. Checks and balances.

  •  We must fend off the attack on our Justice System (none)
    I will tell everyone I know about this. Thank you for posting.  We must stand up in massive numbers.

    The theocratic right is threatening our entire American JUSTICE SYSTEM.

    They are abusing their power with their bizarre attacks on all judges,  lawyers, and the laws of the land.  This is un-American.  Reject these dangerous and radical changes.

    We must protect our most cherished values.  We believe that justice is precious.  We believe in the Constitution.  We believe in America.

  •  Social Justice Sunday doesn't work for me. (3.66)
    It's not cohesive, and the name doesn't suggest what it is. It's a weak response.

    Don't we already have several successful frames that can be used here:

    • Right Wing Power Grab
    • Legislating Morality

    If this isn't a Right Wing Power Grab To Legislate Morality, I don't know what is.

    76% of dKos readers think I'm a secret wing-nut operative!

    by Gustavo on Sat Apr 16, 2005 at 02:42:53 AM PDT

  •  When churches get into politics ... (4.00)
    How do we yank their tax-exempt status? If these churches want to cross the line into politics, fine.

    But they can also start paying their fucking taxes.

  •  I have come to lead a revolution. Please join me. (none)

    If you don't like what the Republicans have done for the last 10 years and what they plan to do this year then you can help destroy the Republican Party agenda.

    Sign the petition at

  •  a genius... (none)
    and once again, completly right on this. Frist is taking a big risk here trying to "regress" (sp?) our country 300 years. He wants to make it like it was before there was a consitution. This kind of action is in-excusible and cannot be rationlized by even the most open-minded of thinkers. If history has taught us anything, it's that the perverbial "best interest of mankind", wins over our worst interests. This is what will happen here, the Republicans, who I once respected for there strategy are making the worst political disaster there is, they're making there interests  known. The tin foil hats we have been wearing for years are finally starting to look like a sign of the intelligent and open-eyed, instead of the sign of a lunatic. The republicans are attempting what George Orwell predicted and it must be stopped. There is good news though, they can be stopped. We are building an organization here, an organization built on the roots of the philosper, George Lakoffs, findings. To use an old phrase in regards to the 2004 election, "they may have won the battle, but they won't win the war", and it's true. Aslong as we stay on put. The republicans are basically taking the noose in for a good fitting, before they hang themselves, and all we have to do is stay on message and watch.
  •  We the People (4.00)
    "We want to protect life."

    The problem in this phrase is the word "life," which has become such a powerful and troubled concept in the wake of the Schiavo affair, that I don't see how it can be used at this moment in a communications campaign intended to benefit Democrats.

    Here's the crux of it:  Democrats are fundamentally concerned about "people."  That is our issue, that is our value, that must be our word.  

    The problem with Bill Frist's campaign is that he has cast his lot with a well-known group of TV preachers who use violence to influence our government in the name of "life."  In response to this, Democrats must use every tool in their arsenal to influence government in the name of "people."  

    "We the people." This is the one, truly authentic American phrase.  It is the phrase that we fight for, and when necessary, it is the phrase we die for.

    We cannot allow "culture of life" to displace "We the people."

    And that is what the TV preachers are trying to do.  They are arguing that Americans should fight for, and when necessary, kill for the phrase "culture of life."  They have killed Americans in the name of the "culture of life," and they are now threatening American judges in the name of "culture of life."

    For generations, people the world over have thrown themselves on our shores just to live in a country where the phrase "We the people" is understood and valued by all.

    These TV preachers want to change that.  They want the world to look at America and think "culture of life."  They want the world to think of America as the place you go to if you want to kill for the "culture of life."

    These TV preachers have mobilized their followers to murdered women and kill doctors in the name of "life."  With the help of Bill Frist--one of the most powerfull men in America--these TV preachers are now calling for their followers to harm American judges, and if they are successful at that, these TV preachers will start asking their followers to harm other Americans--all in the name of "life."

    We must respond with--and repeat--the word "people."

    "We the People."
    "We the People."
    "We the People."

    •  "we the people" (none)
      Your analysis of the other side's extremism hits the nail on the head. We want to shed as much light as possible on that extremism.  We want moderates of all parties to start to ask--as we do--whether the American Taliban are getting too powerful.  

      But instead of "we the people," which is too vague, we need to reclaim something like what Alan Wolfe calls "the radical middle."  Without pandering to the right, or on specific issues, we need to reclaim the right to lead a centrist coalition in American politics against the extremists on the far right.    

      Our alternative is by default "moderate"-seeming folks like Tom Daschle and Harry Reid.  Synonyms for "moderate" include, average, bland, fairish, inconsequential, inconsiderable, indifferent, intermediate, mean, mediocre, medium, middling, ordinary, paltry, passable, piddling, so-so, trifling, trivial, unexceptional.  

      However, moderate is also:  judicious, modest, reasonable,steady, balanced, bearable, calm, careful, cautious, compromising, etc..  Those sound to me like the real alternatives, especially in a fight over judicial nominees.

      "Orthodoxy, of whatever color, seems to demand a lifeless, imitative style." --George Orwell

      by markymarx on Sat Apr 16, 2005 at 08:21:31 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Interesting (none)
        Would a moderate coalition also need to stand against extremists on the left?

        I've noticied several moderate movements springing into action, lately.  One on each side.

        "We the people" may not be the best phrase for a campaign.  I'll give you that.   But I do think that US social movements on the left have typically succceeded by couching ideas in a Constitutional version of nationalism. So, I look to that language.  

        •  The Radical Center (none)
          The GOP coalition is dominated by extremists like Pat Robertson who believes God let Sept. 11 occur to punish the Blue States. Some of the most powerful people in the Republican Party are basically calling for a Civil War against those of us who believe in Constitional protections and who think poverty is not a sin.

          There are no comparable extremists on the left that are members of the coalition we want Democrats to lead, which includes everyone from moderate Republicans to groups like the Center For Constitutional Rights. The tiny number of extremists on the left (Churchill) that make headlines have zero power and influence in the Democratic Party.

          We could compare this to the New Deal, when the centrist coalition FDR created included everyone from moderate Republicans to Communist organizers in the CIO. These folks all worked together to get America back on its feet. Today's GOP is more like what would have occured if Stalinists had take over the Democratic Party.

          "Orthodoxy, of whatever color, seems to demand a lifeless, imitative style." --George Orwell

          by markymarx on Sat Apr 16, 2005 at 01:49:27 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

  •  I was wondering what your marching orders would be (none)
    But I never hoped to get them directly from you right here!
    please keep posting-- and tell us what to do?
  •  My husband and I are making plans (4.00)
    right now, to be in Louisville next Sunday. See y'all there!

    When I'm not in my right mind, my left mind gets pretty crowded. ~ Steven Wright

    by mad ramblings of a sane woman on Sat Apr 16, 2005 at 06:02:12 AM PDT

  •  The biggest outrage (4.00)
    About this latest campaign by the right-wing theocrats is that they are the very same people who backed segregation and worked against the civil rights movement when it was taking place.  What a bunch of screaming hypocrites.  

    I'm an evangelical Christian who harbors the suspicion that Christ would not back the aims of this party of "wealth, war and screw the poor."  They make me sick.  

  •  *Breaking the Silence* (4.00)
    Bus Tour details can be found here.  It was planned, as I understand it, before the Frist announcement.  
  •  whither Ecuador goest... (none)
    (or, a morality tale, as if we need one!)  But of course, it's diff'rent here in 'Merka if WE say the judges have to go.....
    Ecuador President Dissolves Supreme Court

    By MONTE HAYES, Associated Press Writer

    QUITO, Ecuador - President Lucio Gutierrez declared a state of emergency in the capital city of this Andean nation and dissolved the Supreme Court, saying the unpopular judges were the cause of three days of pot-banging street protests in Quito. [more] &sid=84439559

  •  Stopping these evangelical fascists (none)
    at the doorways to our school boards is essential. If they takeover the schools' curriculae, we are done for.

    Defeat the sound-bite.

    by sbj on Sat Apr 16, 2005 at 08:11:45 AM PDT

  •  Republicans (none)
    Republicans used the filibuster two dozen TIMES against Clinton judicial appointees.  Be sure to bring that up to anyone who thinks the few that this is something new.

     The fascist right is getting out of hand.

  •  A Third World Nation (none)
    We don't want this to happen here!

    Ecuadorian President disbands Supreme Court in a move that squashes individual liberties!

    Ecuador sets the example

    People vote for sunshine, not for gloom and doom!

    by missliberties on Sat Apr 16, 2005 at 08:32:36 AM PDT

  •  Jewish Paranoia (4.00)
    First of all, thank you, Dr. Lakoff, and welcome!

    I wish I could make plans to be in Louisville next Sunday evening, but I, like millions of other Jews, will be at a Seder table for the second night of Passover. Although I am an agnostic, I honor my heritage and the faith of my family and my forebears.
    One of the most frightening things about this attack is that, while the perpetraitors (misspelling entirely intentional) make sure most of the time to refer to a blandly neutral "faith", every so often they slip and it is made plain to non-Christians (as opposed to lapsed Christians) where this is really coming from:

    "As the liberal, anti-Christian dogma of the left has been repudiated in almost every recent election, the courts have become the last great bastion for liberalism," Tony Perkins, president of the Family Research Council and organizer of the telecast, wrote in a message on the group's Web site. "For years activist courts, aided by liberal interest groups like the A.C.L.U., have been quietly working under the veil of the judiciary, like thieves in the night, to rob us of our Christian heritage and our religious freedoms."

    (emphasis mine)

    And we're also working on polluting his precious bodily fluids.

    As long as I count the votes, what are you going to do about it? - William Marcy Tweed

    by sidnora on Sat Apr 16, 2005 at 10:00:26 AM PDT

  •  Social Justice Sunday, I'm There!!! (none)
    This is just freaking fantastic.

    I hope there will be time to macrame. Will they serve herbal tea? I'm tuning my guitar and we can all sing "We shall overcome."????

    SLAP! SLAP! SLAP! Wake up for crying out loud! This is the day to Fight for Religious Freedom in America. Bring guns. Or the moral equivalent.

    Leave the poodles home just this once. We need some Volunteers, a la Grace Slick "Got a revolution? Gotta revolution!"

    Either the Nation stands up to Mr. Frist and says "have you no shame?" or I'm going to the mall. Big sale at Abercrombie & Fitch.

    "Turn the upside down and they all like a look."

    by woolyliberal on Sat Apr 16, 2005 at 10:48:48 AM PDT

    •  Lead by example, shame by contrast (none)
      Frist and his cronies have no shame.  We can expose that by showing a better alternative -- one that has done a lot of good every day for many years.

      I'm not sure that yelling would move us forward.  I also know how good it would feel.

  •  The misnamed party of life. (none)
    It appears to me that the RAPEUBLICAN Party seeks to stop women from mkaing a choice before DEFEATUS comes to term and birth. This, RAPEUBLICANS term their concern and value of life.

    Once DEFEATUS comes to term and birth occurs RAPEUBLICANS concern for life comes to term and ENDS. The birth police go home.

    These RAPEUBLICANS hate the government and hate America to raise the minimum wage.

    These RAPEUBLICANS hate the government and hate America to give unemployment workers and extension of unemployment benefits past 6 months despite people still look for work dilligently.

    These RAPEUBLICANS hate the government and hate America to regulate drugs, automobiles, tires, breast implants, pesticides, food and environment, etc. for safety.

    These RAPEUBLICANS hate the government and hate America to help people who need medical attention long term, or disabled or out of work long term.

    These RAPEUBLICANS ABORT their conern for people's lives AT BIRTH.

    Join the revolution

    sign the petition


    I encourage you to use the name RAPEUBLICANS as often as you like and to tell others to use it.

  •  So many of my fellow Democrats (none)
    are totally disgusted with this.

    I beg the question: what does the Bible have to do with judges, besides getting rid of the Constitutional provisions to separate church and state.

    The repug nuts have just embraced insanity.

    Just when I think they couldn't get worse ...

  •  Religious progressive books and quotes (none)
    As mentioned upthread, I've sent the info about Social Justice Sunday to my church and have posted about it on the blogs I have access to. Also, in conjunction with this, I posted a diary asking for people to share good quotes from religious progressives, as well as book recommendations.

    God and Other Famous Liberals

  •  As Dems, we need to embrace the (none)
    concept of Celebrating Diversity.  The Republicans are bowing to a handful of extremists, while the Dems are standing up for the diverse beliefs of all Americans.  We need to paint the GOP as the party of an extreme few, while Democrats embrace the wonderful diversity of ideas--spiritual, cultural, etc.-- that make America so great.
    •  I agree... (none)
      and while we're embracing diversity, we need to remember that conservatives and evangelicals are to be hugged, not stoned. I'm not talking about wacko fringe lunatics here, but the majority. Most people are pretty cool and understand the concept of community and the importance of religious liberty. If we can appeal to them, they'll probably take care of their fringe elements themselves.
      •  Nicely said. It's easy to get caught up in (none)
        the passion of these issues, and frankly GWB really, REALLY pisses me off.  But conservatives are not our enemies and painting them as such hurts our own cause.  

        The Jesus I read about in Catholic school embraced the poor, the prostitutes-- the lowest of the low in society.  We can reach out to the moderate Christians with a compassionate agenda that sees them as partners, not as enemies to be crushed.

  •  Social Justice Sunday (none)
    Dreadful frame.  I agree with those above who have said that this sounds like herbal tea, kumbaya and communism.

    Let's face it.  The right wing evangelicals don't think that UU and UCC Christians, or liberal Christians in general are Christians.  Nevermind what they think of Jews like me.  

    So here's my mini-framing exercise:
    We -- Democrats, progressives, liberals -- believe in protecting religious freedom for EVERYONE.  

    We disagree with those who would mix religion and government and who would persecute someone because of their religion.  

    We believe the judicial branch is one third of our democratic governmental system, equal in its level of democracy and accountability as the legislative and executive branches.

    IN SUM:

    Our values -- religious tolerance, democracy, the rule of law, privacy.

    Their values -- theocracy and religious intolerance, invasion of privacy.

    Our frame -- The Democrats are the party of religious tolerance and democracy.  The Republicans want to invade your privacy.  They are a DANGER to our democracy.

    We should use words like "extreme" and "dangerous" to define them.  We should use words like "protect" and "secure" to define us.

    After all the light that has been shed, I still have midnight in my head--RealWest

    by hillaryk on Sat Apr 16, 2005 at 02:01:51 PM PDT

  •  Racist? (none)
    What the heck? How is that racist? I don't understand their twisted logic...

    "The trouble with Communism is the Communists, just as the trouble with Christianity is the Christians." - H.L Mencken

    by herooftheday on Sat Apr 16, 2005 at 02:08:45 PM PDT

  •  Sorry, but I don't see it. (none)
    I don't see how "Social Justice Sunday" is an  antidote to "Justice Sunday." Both phrases are ambiguous and, with all due respect, the following, taken from this diary,  although true enough, is about 4 messages combined into one rambling message:

    "Religious progressives support social justice, not injustice. We want to protect life all the way from birth up until the edge of death. We will brook no government interference in difficult, even agonizing family decisions. We believe the common good is necessary if we are to pursue our private goods, and that government should use the common wealth for the common good. And we need our judges, and we need to keep them safe."

    I'm sorry, but someone has to say it: the emperor (this message) has no clothes.

    Why not:

    Independent Justice Sunday

    "Mr. President, I'm not saying we wouldn't get our hair mussed." General Buck Turgidson

    by muledriver on Sat Apr 16, 2005 at 02:26:09 PM PDT

    •  Independent Justice Sunday? (none)
      I doubt that the faith communities hard at work on Social Justice Sunday will change their plans as you recommend.  It's not that they wouldn't respect your position.  It's just not likely to be their position.

      I like the Social Justice Sunday idea and Professor Lakoff's attire, but I won't try to change your mind.

      Whether you participate in Social Justice Sunday or not, I know you will respect the right of those who do participate to lift their voices as they choose.

      I'll let you get back to driving that mule now.  Perhaps you'll be organizing another event?

      •  Obviously, I would not expect them (none)
        to change their plans. Besides, I am talking about the message, not the event.

        You should feel free to try to change my mind, I won't be offended or defensive. Honest.

        My point is that the justices should be independent of all faith communities, even mine.

        "Mr. President, I'm not saying we wouldn't get our hair mussed." General Buck Turgidson

        by muledriver on Sat Apr 16, 2005 at 08:23:46 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  Thank you, Mr. Lakoff (none)
    I agree with above comments, basically saying that Democrats appearing on talk shows need their talking points hammered out. They also need spine implants, so they can show righteous anger when this matter is brought up.

    I want some "Have you no shame" moments.

  •  there will be confusion (none)
    sorry folks, it appears that the right wing has possession of "religion"--any attempt to meet them head on using religion will only confuse people.

    you can say what you like, that there are "people of faith" blah blah blah on our side. is there no better way to talk about the fuckup that this government is, than to pitch bible quotes at each other?

    i mean come on! is that all we've got? this isn't the fucking balkans!

    •  The best counter to bad theology isn't secularism (none)
      it's good theology (at least according to Jim Wallis in "God's Politics").

      Progressive Christians are really the only ones who can make a convincing case, who have the bona fides, to challenge the so-called "Christian Right" for their straying from what Christ actually taught.  Secularists arguing against them only play into their hands and reinforce their delusion of being a persecuted minority.

      However, that's not to say that I really like this strategy, especially as a Christian.  It is the first step down a slippery slope towards religious wars.

  •  To Prof. Lakoff (none)

    Dear Prof. Lakoff,

    I posted a response to your diary, as my own separate diary entry.  I would very much appreciate it if you clicked my name and looked at it, I think it would interest you... and I'd be very interested in your reply.


  •  Thank You (none)
    I wish every Democrat hammers this point.  Dont Label Religious with any Republicans, Right wing, etc. There is nothing Religious about the Right wing or the Republicans.  Promote Religious and Liberals working together or as allies.

    My Republican Relatives are shock that I am a Democrat because they think Democrats are devils and against religious.

    Also hopefully we hammer the point that even if Liberals are more secular they are more Christian in their outlook and policies.  And Religous and Liberals are natural allies because they both want a world that Christ taught--base on Love of your neighbor and protection of the weak, disenfranchized, poor,  and PEACE.

    Republicans are the party of corporations and therefore AMORAL.  Republicans are really only using Religion to further their political goals.

    find your local dem group link:

    by timber on Sun Apr 17, 2005 at 06:59:04 AM PDT

  •  "Religious Freedom Sunday" much stronger (none)
    This is a nice start.
    Still, since this is about effective framing, I agree with the many posters who note "Social Justice Sunday" is weak compared to other choices like "Religious Freedom Sunday."

    Sadly, many self-described Christians view themselves as "saved" and are ambivalent about fighting for social justice on earth.  That's why, going back to the civil rights movement and before, you could go to a civil rights event and see plenty of jews, atheists, and black Christians, while white "Christians" would throw rocks at marchers, ignore a cross burning in their neighborhood at night, or light one up themselves.

    By calling for Religious Freedom instead, we call the evangelicals' bluff - because they hate religious freedom - without alienating the core "Christian" audience that I agree need for a strong win.

  •  Don't wait - Get busy (none)
    Here in Dallas local Christian Democrats are developing a press release and are discussing taking out an ad in the Dallas Morning News.  We're also rallying the troops to take part in whatever non-partisan events that the Clergy and Laity Network can get going.  If they don't do anything locally, we'll stage our own.

    I urge those of you in other parts of the country to get busy and take some local initiative.  We don't have very long and if the grassroots wait for direction from "on high", then we won't have time eonugh to pull it off.

  •  It's not about Faith, It's about Works! (none)
    OK, guys, I think I have the framing here.  As a response to the false charge of a "filibuster against people of faith". IT'S NOT ABOUT FAITH, IT'S ABOUT WORKS!

    The Christian Democratic Network of Greater Dallas has issued a press release along these lines, see Dallas Christian Democrats Denounce 'Justice Sunday'

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