Review of the Witnesses Being Used to Allegedly “Prove” Darren Wilson’s Guilt

by Chuck Jines August 24, 2014

On Saturday, August 9, 2014, in Ferguson, MO, 18 year old Michael Brown was shot and killed by Ferguson, MO police officer, Darren Wilson. On that Stop Killing Our Kids tragic Saturday afternoon, reports began to come in that a young unarmed black man had been shot to death by a white police officer, while innocently walking from a convenience store to his grandmother’s apartment. The headlines read – “Michael

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Is There A Heroin Crisis? A Response to Nick Gillespie

by Chuck Jines February 18, 2014

According to libertarian political pundit and editor in chief of Reason.com, Nick Gillespie, the recent death of actor Philip Seymour Hoffman has triggered, what he characterizes as “[a] massive outpouring of patently false and exaggerated stories about the increase in heroin use.” Gillespie then continues by citing sources which show that there has indeed been a dramatic

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Podcast: Religion, Slavery, and the Justification of Evil

by Chuck Jines December 20, 2014

“If the scriptures do not justify slavery, I know not what they do justify. If we err in maintaining this relation, I know not when we are right – truth then has parted her usual moorings and floated off into an ocean of uncertainty.” -Ferdinand Jacobs, The Committing of Our Cause to God, Charleston, SC, 1850

Whenever we read the obscene stories, the voluptuous debaucheries, the cruel and torturous executions, the unrelenting vindictiveness, with which more than half the Bible is filled, it would be more consistent that we called it the word of a demon, than the word of God. It is a history of wickedness, that has served to corrupt and brutalize mankind; and, for my part, I sincerely detest it, as I detest everything that is cruel. -Thomas Paine, The Age of Reason

Photo of the Aftermath – Peshawar Attack, 2014

"When ye encounter the infidels, strike off their heads till ye have made a great slaughter among them." Muhammad, Sura 47

“When ye encounter the infidels, strike off their heads till ye have made a great slaughter among them.” Muhammad, Sura 47

A few New Testament passages on slavery:

Slaves, obey your earthly masters with deep respect and fear. Serve them sincerely as you would serve Christ. -Ephesians 6:5

Christians who are slaves should give their masters full respect so that the name of God and his teaching will not be shamed. If your master is a Christian, that is no excuse for being disrespectful. You should work all the harder because you are helping another believer by your efforts. Teach these truths, Timothy, and encourage everyone to obey them. -1 Timothy 6:1-2

The servant will be severely punished, for though he knew his duty, he refused to do it. “But people who are not aware that they are doing wrong will be punished only lightly. Much is required from those to whom much is given, and much more is required from those to whom much more is given.” -Luke 12:47-48

A few Old Testament passages on slavery:

However, you may purchase male or female slaves from among the foreigners who live among you. You may also purchase the children of such resident foreigners, including those who have been born in your land. You may treat them as your property, passing them on to your children as a permanent inheritance. You may treat your slaves like this, but the people of Israel, your relatives, must never be treated this way. -Leviticus 25:44-46

“When a man sells his daughter as a slave, she will not be freed at the end of six years as the men are. If she does not please the man who bought her, he may allow her to be bought back again. But he is not allowed to sell her to foreigners, since he is the one who broke the contract with her. And if the slave girl’s owner arranges for her to marry his son, he may no longer treat her as a slave girl, but he must treat her as his daughter. If he himself marries her and then takes another wife, he may not reduce her food or clothing or fail to sleep with her as his wife. If he fails in any of these three ways, she may leave as a free woman without making any payment.” -Exodus 21:7-11

Recommended Books:

The Mind of the Master Class: History and Faith in the Southern Slaveholders’ Worldview

Noah’s Curse : The Biblical Justification of American Slavery (Religion in America Series)

Slaves in the New Testament: Literary, Social, and Moral Dimensions

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Podcast: Is Photography Art?

by Chuck Jines December 19, 2014

Ted Forbes, from The Art of Photography show, recently raised the question “is photography an art?” during a interview with photographer Harold Feinstein. In order to seriously attempt answering this question, one must first answer the  question: “What IS Art?”

Thanks to Ted for raising the issue, however, I couldn’t help but notice that Feinstein never actually answered the question. Also, his analogy of the paint brush, really fell short of the mark.  A paint brush requires a human Will behind it in order to produce an image. Not so with a camera, where even a monkey can take a good capture. Feinstein missed the mark BIG time.

Since the art community tends to be dominated by the subjectivist world view, I like letting them define what art is before continuing any discussion on the topic. Generally the answer tends to be: “Art is everything and anything.” That answer, is a real conversation stopper…

Is photography an art? The short answer is: No.

I go into greater detail in the podcast below:

What is art?

Three schools of thought:

Intrinsicism – “Art is art because it’s art.”

Subjectivism – “Hey man, like, it’s art if I think it’s art. Art is whatever makes me feel good at the moment, for no particular reason.” The recent interview of Herold Feinstein serves as a fine example of the subjectivist position, where anything can be an art, including maintenance painting on the side of a building…

Objectivism – Art is an esthetic brought into existence by an artist through a selective re-creation of reality based upon that person’s metaphysical value-judgments. Art provides the fuel that helps bring meaning and purpose to human life. Art is one of five critical branches of philosophy, and serves as the cultural barometer for determining the psychological health of a society.

By this criteria of what art is, photography is NOT an art…

Art is a selective re-creation of reality according to an artist’s metaphysical value-judgments. Man’s profound need of art lies in the fact that his cognitive faculty is conceptual, i.e., that he acquires knowledge by means of abstractions, and needs the power to bring his widest metaphysical abstractions into his immediate, perceptual awareness. Art fulfills this need: by means of a selective re-creation, it concretizes man’s fundamental view of himself and of existence. It tells man, in effect, which aspects of his experience are to be regarded as essential, significant, important. In this sense, art teaches man how to use his consciousness. It conditions or stylizes man’s consciousness by conveying to him a certain way of looking at existence. “Art and Cognition,” The Romantic Manifesto, 45

“It is a technical, not a creative, skill. Art requires a selective re-creation. A camera cannot perform the basic task of painting: a visual conceptualization, i.e., the creation of a concrete in terms of abstract essentials. The selection of camera angles, lighting or lenses is merely a selection of the means to reproduce various aspects of the given, i.e., of an existing concrete. There is an artistic element in some photographs, which is the result of such selectivity as the photographer can exercise, and some of them can be very beautiful—but the same artistic element (purposeful selectivity) is present in many utilitarian products: in the better kinds of furniture, dress design, automobiles, packaging, etc. The commercial art work in ads (or posters or postage stamps) is frequently done by real artists and has greater esthetic value than many paintings, but utilitarian objects cannot be classified as works of art.” -The Romantic Manifesto, 74

Jonathan Jones on art – “Yet a closer look at Phantom reveals exactly the opposite. This record-setting picture typifies everything that goes wrong when photographers think they are artists. It is derivative, sentimental in its studied romanticism, and consequently in very poor taste. It looks like a posh poster you might find framed in a pretentious hotel room.”

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I’m proud to be a thinker in a world full of zombies. Subjectivism is the intellectual fog that has rolled across the land… only two possible outcomes: A Renaissance in rational, fact-based thinking, or, total collapse into totalitarianism… Post Footer automatically generated by Add Post Footer Plugin for wordpress.

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Notes and clips from several conversations on race: Yesterday, approximately 100 people aimlessly marched in circles around Chicago’s Loop for hours, while chanting meaningless slogans… During one of the lulls, I suggested to the crowd that, since we had such a wonderful group of energetic people gathered together, maybe we could all head on over […]

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