Sunday, November 13, 2005

Buckets of inquisition

With a hat-tip to the Wingnuterer, I took the 'which Monty Python character are you' test and got the followin results:
You are a cardinal! You love to try & get others into trouble, even if you have to make up lies...NO ONE expects the Spanish Inquisition!
You are a cardinal! You love to try & get others
into trouble, even if you have to make up
lies...NO ONE expects the Spanish Inquisition!

What Monty Python Sketch Character are you?
brought to you by Quizilla

Saturday, November 12, 2005

NP story on Evangelical activism

The National Post has a story today on a conference at the Crossroads Centre (which is where 100 Huntley Street is based). It is being organized by Tristan Emmanuel, who had appeared in the news last spring when stories about an alleged evangelical take-over of the Conservative Party.

Canada: Christians seek voice in politics: Evangelicals 'mocked'
Siri Agrell, National Post

Saturday, November 12, 2005

BURLINGTON, Ont. - With its neatly arrayed chairs and Christmas decorations, the atrium of the Crossroads Centre looks more ready to host a nativity play than a political workshop.

But 150 evangelical Christians from across the Golden Horseshoe region of southern Ontario will gather here today, outside the studio where the evangelical TV show 100 Huntley Club is filmed, for a lesson in political activism.

"In order to see anything different in Ottawa, we need to see a change in our culture," said Tristan Emmanuel, a conference organizer and executive director of the Equipping Christians for the Public-square Centre. "People need to change. The church needs to change."

In the United States, the Christian community has emerged as an influential force behind the current Republican administration and the impetus toward faith-based initiatives.

Mr. Emmanuel believes that a similar move is necessary in Canada, but it is up to evangelical voters -- not political leaders -- to drive the agenda.

So Mr. Emmanuel is planning a televised town hall meeting in January, coinciding with a possible election call, when Christian Canadians could discuss their beliefs and priorities in an open forum.

By organizing events around political involvement rather than partisan stripes, he hopes party leaders will recognize the electoral advantage of acknowledging the Christian community in their campaigns.

"They're politicians and a politician won't take a step unless it's politically advantageous," he said.

Three million evangelical Christians live in Canada, a voting bloc whose political voice should not be dismissed or underestimated, Mr. Emmanuel said.

Christians have long been vilified by the Liberal party, he said, a trend crystallized by the public derision heaped on the creationist beliefs of former Canadian Alliance leader Stockwell Day.

"People like myself have been mocked over that issue," said Mr. Emmanuel, who is studying at the McMaster Divinity College in Hamilton, Ont. "You would never do that with anyone else's religious views."

During Mr. Day's unsuccessful campaign to unseat the Liberals, Mr. Emmanuel said many evangelical Christians watched as religion was used to undermine Mr. Day's credibility as a leader, in spite of the fact that both former prime minister Jean Chretien and his replacement Paul Martin are avowed Roman Catholics.

But Mr. Emmanuel said he reached his breaking point during the 2004 federal election, when the Liberal government threatened the electorate with the Conservative party's "hidden agenda," which he believes was a thinly veiled attack on Christian beliefs.

"They used a strategy to vilify a natural constituency of the Conservative party," he said. "Normally you go after your opponent, not a specific community who might support him."

That was the moment he decided evangelicals had to demonstrate their political influence, not by throwing their weight behind a specific candidate but by making their voices heard at all levels of politics.

"Ideally, what we want to be is an organization that defends and advocates for Christians who want to be involved in the public square," Mr. Emmanuel said.

To that end, the conference has not invited MPs or would-be candidates to speak today, but rather Christian activists who believe their beliefs have been misrepresented or maligned.

"I basically looked at the last 10 years of political marginalization of the Christian view," he said of the invited speakers. "I think what people will take away is that this is happening, this mistreatment of our standpoint is not theoretical."

One of the speakers who will address attendees today is Chris Kempling, a B.C. teacher who was suspended from his job as a guidance counsellor after writing a series of letters to his local paper that criticized same-sex relationships.

The conference will also hear from Stephen Bennett, a U.S. radio personality, musician and public speaker who has flown to Canada to discuss his personal rejection of homosexuality. A self-professed "former homosexual," Mr. Bennett is now married to a woman and has dedicated himself to reaching out to "homosexuals who want to escape the lifestyle."

Mr. Emmanuel said the evangelical community is not necessarily going to fall in line behind Mr. Harper's Conservatives.

"I want to be careful not to be too critical, but I think Stephen Harper could do a better job defending our community," he said. "To be honest, I was shocked at his inability to fight for his beliefs and to keep the [sponsorship scandal] in the forefront of the debate."

Contrary to popular belief, he said evangelical voters are not politically monolithic.

Christians interested in social outreach and other "compassionate endeavours" might have a natural proclivity toward Liberal or NDP candidates, he said. But he said it is the public disavowals of religion that push the evangelical constituency toward the Conservatives.

"If you constantly marginalize us, that's when we could galvanized into one voting bloc," he said. "But really we're all over the map. We're pretty open-minded people."

Friday, November 04, 2005

The quantum mechanics of search engines

Most of the time, they do most of what you expect. Sometimes, however…

To see what I mean,
  1. go to
  2. In their search window, type "conservative t-shirts"
  3. hit return
Here is a screen capture of what I got on Nov. 4th:

Tuesday, November 01, 2005

Here's an interesting one…

Literally, A Web Log, is a blog dedicated to track the abuse of the word 'literally'. Hmm. And people think Buckets of Grewal is weird….