Month: November 2005

Far Out

Great news! I’m a blogger/writer. That makes me the creative sort, right? This is like a license to fornicate:

Talk about creativity. Professional artists and poets hook up with two or three times as many sex partners as other people, new research indicates.

Now I just need to get my wife to accept it.… Read the rest

White Flight

From the opening lines of a Leonard Pitts syndicated column:

Perhaps you remember white flight.

That is, of course, the term for what happened in the ’60s when blacks, newly liberated from legal segregation, began fanning out from the neighborhoods to which they’d once been restricted. Traumatized at the thought of living in proximity to their perceived inferiors, white people put their houses on the market at fire-sale prices and took flight.

That’s an interesting way to describe white flight. My in-laws left Detroit in the early 1970s after crime increased in their neighborhood, my future mother-in-law was mugged in her driveway, and a neighborhood girl was raped. Pitts wants to make it look like a racist thing. It wasn’t. It was a safety thing.

Pitt is a straw man, of course, but it’s still fun to point out ludicrousness.

For a New York Times look at white flight (that looks more like my version that Pitts’), click here. … Read the rest

Moose Me

Another feel-good story for the holiday season:

Alaska inmates at a prison work farm are taking on a new assignment: butchering the meat of moose struck by trains each winter along 68 miles of track.

The meat will be processed by prisoners at the Point MacKenzie Correctional Farm, then distributed to soup kitchens and other charities serving the needy, under a joint effort by the state Department of Corrections, Alaska Railroad and Food Bank of Alaska.

Link. … Read the rest

Limbo Abolished?

The Roman Catholic Church is preparing to abolish limbo, the place between heaven and hell reserved for the souls of children who die before they have been baptised.

I’m not qualified to write on the intricate theological issues of unbaptized infants, but I know enough to realize that the following statement from the same article is baseless:

[The Church] is concerned that the concept of limbo may not impress potential converts.

The Church is aware that Muslims, for example, believe that all children go straight to heaven without passing any test.

The day that the Catholic Church changes its teachings for marketing reasons is the day I become a deist. … Read the rest

More C.S.L.

Mark Brumley at Ignatius Insight Scoop also offers insight about Lewis’ views about translating Narnia onto the screen. Excerpt:

Now, is it correct to say that Lewis opposed a screen adaptation of the Chronicles of Narnia? Yes and no. He speaks against a TV version of The Magician’s Nephew and therefore, we can suppose, of the rest of the books. What he says of a TV version would seem to apply to film treatments as well–at least film treatments that would have been possible in Lewis’ day–with the exception, Lewis implies, of a possible animated version by Disney. “Cartoons,” as he notes, wld. [would] be another matter.”

Lewis’ reason for rejecting TV and by implication film versions of Narnia had to do with the way Lewis thought the depiction of the animal characters would come off using “photography”. He could not have envisioned the kind of computer generated characterizations Disney is using to render The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe or the special effects used to create Lewis’ friend Tolkien’s The Lord of the Rings.

Can we say, then, that Lewis would have approved of a CGI version of Aslan? Not necessarily. But we can say that the principle he gave for opposing a film depiction of one of his Narnia stories doesn’t, given modern technology, now preclude producing films of the Narnia stories.

My earlier post on the same subject. … Read the rest

Scientific Spiritualism

During the past twenty-five years, study after study has shown that seriously ill patients who are prayed for–including those who don’t know about these prayers–fare better than those who are not prayed for. The man who has done the most to integrate the results of these studies, Dr. Larry Dossey, former chief of staff at Humana Medical Center in Dallas, sums them up in two words: “Prayer works.” Or, as Dossey’s admirer Dr. Herbert Benson of the Harvard Medical School puts it, “If spirituality was a drug, we wouldn’t be able to make it fast enough.”

Randall Sullivan, The Miracle Detective, p. 381. … Read the rest