It Really is a Heart Problem


Once again, we’ve had another school shooting and, once again, people are coming out of the woodwork to declare, “This is not a gun problem; it’s a heart problem.” Never mind that the 18-year-old Parkland shooter was able to buy a military-style, semi-automatic rifle after being expelled from school, visited by the police multiple times, and even reported to the FBI. No, this is just another example of a kid who was never forced to attend church, who played too many violent video games, and who never learned proper respect for human life. The lesson here is, we don’t need to make it harder for people like Cruz to buy guns. We just need to do better as a society.

I agree: we do have a heart problem in this country. But it’s not that we fail to attend church or play too many video games. It’s that we, as a nation, love our weapons of death more than the lives of our children.

Disagree? Consider this:

– Folks in the pro-life crowd will refuse to sell women birth control on the off chance that it would cause a fertilized egg to drop into the toilet—but when living, breathing children are gunned down at school, they shrug and suggest we pray more.

– We make laws requiring children to use car seats until they’re 12 on the off chance they might be involved in a serious car accident—but when that same 12-year-old is riddled with bullets in a classroom, we balk at taking any preventative measures.

– We demand that the government keep a database of registered sex offenders with their locations plotted on Google Maps so we can keep kids from being molested—but requiring a similar registration for gun owners to keep kids from being shot is an invasion of privacy.

– We’ll put Sudafed and Tide Pods under lock and key at the store so teens can’t make meth or poison themselves—but telling a sociopath he can’t buy an AR-15 is unfair.

– For our children’s safety, we require everyone who drives to be licensed and insured—but asking the same of gun owners is overreaching.

– We violate the rights of transgender people by dictating which public bathroom they can use so they won’t make our children feel uncomfortable—but asking people to keep guns out of schools so our children feel safe enough to learn is offensive.

– We stand outside of abortion clinics wailing about the sanctity of life, turn entire elections on this one issue, and do everything in our power to eradicate abortion from society—but when teenagers leave schools in body bags, we offer thoughts and prayers.

And we wonder why today’s children lack empathy.

Dr. Ben Carson, a surgeon who ran for president in 2016, famously said, “I never saw a body with bullet holes that was more devastating than taking the right to arm ourselves away.”

A surgeon said this. A surgeon. He worked on dozens of gunshot victims ripped open and bleeding to death on his operating table, their families wailing with grief in the next room, and he concluded, “This is awful, but not nearly as awful as telling some guy that he can’t own the tool that caused these wounds.”

Such a statement is just as sociopathic as anything that happened in Parkland on February 14.

Our children beg of us to do something; they cry at the thought of returning to school in the aftermath of yet another massacre. But instead of passing sensible gun laws, we spend millions of dollars putting them through active shooter drills during math class. We tell our terrified children to run out the back door, hide in closets, play dead, or wear backpacks as body armor and rush the shooter. We ask their grossly underpaid teachers to shield them from the bullets. We teach our kids to throw books and chairs to buy their friends extra seconds for escape; we tell them in the media that they will be remembered as heroes for their acts of bravery.

That’s what the YouTube generation wants, right? Fame? See, we’re giving it to them.

But God forbid we take the gun out of their murderer’s hands. That might require us to fill out a background check application, or go on a registry, or use a trigger lock, or give up our dreams of stockpiling semi-automatic weapons for the coming apocalypse and that’s…too much to ask.

We drag our kids off to the firing range on a Saturday, because we tell ourselves it’s really a lack of gun knowledge that’s causing these shootings—that if kids knew how to properly load, aim, shoot, clear and reload these weapons, they wouldn’t spray bullets into crowds of people. Then we take them to the latest Bruce Willis or Dwayne Johnson film and laugh while these famous actors do exactly that, and then we converse over dinner about the loaded gun we keep in the closet to scare away thieves and trespassers.

At the end of the day, handguns and semi-automatic weapons are made expressly to intimidate and kill people, and we’re not about to limit that right in any way—even if it forces our children to live in terror. We buy them their own guns as birthday presents, encouraging them to continue the proud and rabid tradition of gun ownership, because it’s our first love as a nation.

Video games are fantasy. The way we value gun ownership over innocent lives is real. Our children see it daily and despair. We tell our children to value human lives over inanimate objects, then we and our leaders do the opposite.

We keep asking where the sociopaths are coming from. Perhaps we should look in the mirror.

Why We Shouldn’t Say, “Modest is Hottest”

Insanely on-point meme found at Expert Textperts

Modest is hottest. It’s a phrase that was coined a few years ago to convince Christian women that dressing modestly is sexy and attractive. Because that’s what women care about, right? The male gaze. Knowing that they’re considered pretty and desirable despite ankle-length pants and neck-high collars.

I hate this phrase and everything it communicates. Hate it, hate it, hate it.

It’s not because I like to walk around in short dresses and cleavage-baring shirts. In fact, you’d be hard pressed to find a skirt in my closet, let alone one that falls above the knee. I love pants, and I’d rather not spend my day constantly adjusting a low-cut shirt to ensure that my “girls” are properly concealed. But every time someone says, “Modest is hottest,” my shoulders go up around my ears. A friend said it on Facebook last summer, and I responded with, “True. I wore jeans outside the other day and nearly had a heat stroke.” (Perhaps not my finest moment.)

“Modest is hottest” is a phrase that needs to disappear. Immediately. It needs to be completely erased from the Christian lexicon—because it plays right into the secular objectification and hyper-sexualization of women.

Let me explain.
Continue reading

Your ‘Deeply Held Religious Belief’ Isn’t Biblical


Most of us know the story. Last year, a Colorado baker was taken to court because he refused to make a wedding cake for a gay couple, citing that such an act would violate his “religious beliefs” against gay marriage.

You’d think that nearly a year after the ruling (in which the baker was found guilty of discrimination), that most people would have forgotten about it. But no. I still see articles and hear comments pop up on ‘deeply held religious beliefs’ and how it’s such a shame that our government doesn’t seem to care about protecting them these days. (Protecting them meaning that they can be exercised whenever, however, and with whatever consequences that result.) The phrase took center stage in the Hobby Lobby birth control case, and again when a photographer in New Mexico refused to photograph a gay wedding.

However, the more I hear the words ‘deeply held religious belief’ bandied about, the more uneasy I feel. I wasn’t sure why at first, until I had read through the umpteenth article on the subject. And that’s when I realized that the so-called “beliefs” being defended weren’t actually rooted in scripture.

I believe that if someone is going to make a case for a ‘deeply held religious belief,’ then said belief should be backed up with a clear biblical mandate. And those saying it is against their religion to sell wedding favors to gay couples don’t have a scriptural basis for that position.

I can prove it. Continue reading

Persecution of Their Own Making

Persecution photo persecution.jpgNormally, I don’t get terribly riled when people express viewpoints different from my own. I believe that truth is sometimes expressed in multiple dimensions and that most people have something reasonable to say. But once in a while, even these panties get into a twist. And it happened just the other day – in the comments section of my post on Matt Walsh. This is what one commenter wrote:

“So as a Christian should you just be nice and quiet when the culture of abortion and homosexuality is basically force fed to you? I don’t think Jesus would agree. In today’s culture those who actually support Christian values are attacked much like the days of Jesus. Matt has the courage to engage the battle.”

Let me explain how this simple statement took me from zero to rage dump. Inherent in this comment is the belief that Christians in America are facing persecution from gays and abortionists. Being steeped in evangelical culture, I hear this sentiment expressed all the time. CEO of Mozilla resigns due to protests over his support of Prop 8? Persecution! Reality TV shows starring Christians get canceled when said Christians make anti-gay remarks? Persecution! Christian teens are told to stop bullying their LGBT classmates? Persecution!

I wish I were joking.

Let me just state for the record, I am seriously the wrong person to choose for a Christians-in-America-are-persecuted rant. As an employee of an international church-building organization, I get to hear every single day about the very real persecution of Christians that is happening in other parts of the world: Continue reading

My Beef with the Matt Walsh Blog

If you’ve been on WordPress for more than five minutes, you’ve probably heard about the Matt Walsh Blog. Kind of hard not to – it’s the most popular blog on the site, totaling somewhere around 40 million hits. The blog is doing so well that, just a few months ago, its creator, Matt Walsh, was able to quit his conservative radio talk show and devote himself to blogging full-time.

If only we could all be so lucky. Am I right? 🙂

Highly conservative, Matt is an adamant promoter of stay-at-home moms, homeschooling, marriage and family, gun rights, pro-life ethics and personal responsibility. He’s also a diehard critic of liberal ideology, Barack Obama, feminism, abortion, public education and affirmative action. His detractors have called him “a young Rush Limbaugh.”

With so many people following his blog, I imagine some of my readers are following him, too – as am I. However, I happen to be one of his critics. And today I want to explain what I see as the major problem with his writings for someone who calls himself a Christian and, supposedly, writes for other Christians. Continue reading