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Tuesday, January 17, 2006

An Observation

I was listening to a beautiful love song on the radio th eother day. I don't know the artist, but the refrain says "How could I live without you?". As the imagery flowed through the music I realized how the song, and it's imagery changes depending on who is being sung to.

The underlying theme of love and adoration never changes. However, the pictures the song evokes does. This song is a love song from a woman to a man, and that is the typical way and image of things when a love song is heard on the radio. Also, being that love on this level is almost universally between a man an d a woman, this is the general image ost people think of when they hear a love song.

So I did a thought experiment.

I took the ong and placed in the context of spiritual worship, and without chenging anything it became a heartfelt song of praise, adoration, and dependence on God. I liked this meaning, and it got me o wondering how many songs we think are secular might be more spititual in nature.

Then I thought of it in the context of the singer singing to another woman, and my enjoyment of the song diminished as the message changed froma good one to an abberration. This got me thinking about Elton John, who has made many masterpieces, some truly fantastic love songs. He is a homosexual, and that means that, coming from him, he is singing his love to another man. Remember that pictures flow through music. This new perspective changed the pictures that flow through his love songs in such a way that, well, let's just say I don't want to listen any of his love songs anymore.

Music is a powerful tool for both art and communicating ideas. It is especially powerful among young people. So powerful that, and I don't remember exactly, but it was either Plato o Aristotle who said "Give me control of the music, and I will control the thoughts and attitudes of our youths." Be aware that this quote may not be word for word, but the meaning is exactly the same as the original if tehre are any minor variations.

This said, it really makes one wonder about the music industry. It also makes one think a litt;e harder before buying certain music.

62 Comments:

  • Daniel,

    This Gay thing has really gotten to you, are you trying to tell us something?

    If so, it's OK.

    By Blogger Ranando, at 6:54 AM  

  • Actually, I have been doing a lot of reading and research into the subject lately. Suffice it to say, I don't like what I am seeing. Also, I have never liked their social agenda.

    By Blogger Daniel Levesque, at 8:10 AM  

  • Nor have I, Daniel... liked their social agenda, that is.

    Extremely good point regarding Elton John's music, although even though I know he is gay, his music is so good that I automatically apply it to my life style, not his. But your point about music affecting our youth is very well taken; it does and it is, every day. Some of it's good and way to much of it is bad. It's a shame.

    By Blogger Gayle, at 8:54 AM  

  • If you don't like EJ's songs now, you'll probably really hate this'n of mine:

    I once knew a little girl
    She was a funny little thing
    And everytime I seen her
    In my heart, I'd sing
    But everytime I kissed her
    It'd make my stomach turn
    For you see, Unfortunately,
    My girl, Betsy was a worm!

    Oh Betsy the Worm! Betsy my worm!
    Ya know our love was true
    But you left me one day
    And you left me to stay,
    When my father went fishing with you!

    By Blogger Dan Trabue, at 10:47 AM  

  • If you like Elton's songs you like his songs. It's really quite straightforward. If you don't like them because of who he is married to then there's a word for people like you.

    By Blogger DanProject76, at 10:59 AM  

  • The problem does not lie with the music, the artist or the music industry. It is in your mind, your psyche and your religion that the problem lies.

    By Anonymous cjb, at 12:00 PM  

  • Dan T,
    Funny poem.

    DP76,
    "If you don't like them because of who he is married to then there's a word for people like you."

    Yeah, "Grossed out". And it's just the love songs. The non-sexual stuff I still find quite enjoyable.

    CJB,
    This post was about the meaning of music as it interpereted in the mind, and as it is meant by the artist. I fail to see the problem.

    All,
    It's amazing that the one thing everybody has latched onto was homosexuality. No one has bothered to touch on the religios connotation, which is, to me, the far more inportant of the two.

    By Blogger Daniel Levesque, at 1:36 PM  

  • Daniel,

    With all do respect........

    I think it's pretty straight forward, I think you might think your Gay.

    All the research and the linking it to songs and on and on.

    Something is troubling you and your just trying to come to gribs with it.

    Am I close?

    By Blogger Ranando, at 1:44 PM  

  • Ranando,

    Not remotely close to right.

    Homosexuality is a prominent sociopolitical issue, and as such it deserves some serious research and thought. This especially considering the way the homosexual activists are trying to reshape American culture.

    your assertion is a logical fallacy. An easy way to disprove it is to point out the following. By your logic, since I study, keep, and breed fish I must be a fish. Since I study biology I must be a biologist. Since I study astronomy I must be an astronomer. Since I am spending a greatdealof time and effort researching evolution I must be an evolutionist. All of these statements are false.

    Of course, the fact that you are just needling me has not been lost on me. Gay-baiting is a really tired tactic though, and it was never a respectable one. If you really want to get under my skin you will have to be more creative.

    By Blogger Daniel Levesque, at 1:58 PM  

  • I guess having a discussion is out of the question. I'm not bating you, I was just asking.

    I stand by my assertions.

    By Blogger Ranando, at 2:04 PM  

  • So I take it you don't agree with the theory of evolution and think that there is some kind of gay conspiracy to make the whole world gay?

    Because that's what Rosa Parks sat at the front of the bus for. She had her black face paint ready for all those white folks.

    By Blogger DanProject76, at 2:13 PM  

  • Daniel: This post was about the meaning of music as it interpereted in the mind, and as it is meant by the artist. I fail to see the problem.

    Exactly. You fail to see the problem even though you state it right there. The problem is not what the artist meant, but what you interpret. You said yourself that you didn’t mind Elton John’s music until you thought of it in a different way. The music hasn’t changed, just your interpretation of it. Even Gayle, with whom I disagree most of the time, is pragmatic enough to say so what if he’s gay, she still likes the music because she applies it to her lifestyle. It’s still the same music, but Gayle interprets it differently, as do many others. It’s not the music or the artist that is the problem, it’s your interpretation of the music based upon your own dislikes and fears.

    Daniel: By your logic, since I study, keep, and breed fish I must be a fish.

    Another straw man argument.

    Daniel: Since I study biology I must be a biologist.

    That’s a much better rebuttal. But perhaps one could say that since you go on about homosexuality so much you are probably a homophobe.

    Daniel: Since I am spending a greatdealof time and effort researching evolution I must be an evolutionist.

    If you are truly spending a great deal of time and effort researching evolution then you may come to see that it is true. After all, it would be difficult to ignore the mountains of evidence gathered by hundreds of thousands of scientists from various disciplines over the last 150 years. They can’t all be wrong, can they?

    By Anonymous cjb, at 3:40 PM  

  • "Because that's what Rosa Parks sat at the front of the bus for."

    It is a pure fallacy to compare homosexual rights to racially motivated equal rights movement of the 60's. Nobody can help being born a certain skin color. Nobody is born gay, it is a choice. There is no such thing as rights based on choices, only rights based on circumstances that cannot be helped.

    CJB,

    The way homophobia is applied in almost every argument is 100% improper and doesn't even fit the definition of the word. the literal meaning of homophobia is "afraid of homosexuals". since we have firmly established that I have no fear of homosexuality, but am disgusted by unnatualness and sinfulness of the lifestyle, I am provably not a homophobe. Also, since bigotry is based on ignorance and hate, and we have also established that I am far from ignorant on the topic of homosexuality, and that I have no hatred for homosexuals themselves but actually pity them for destroying themselves, I do not fit the definition of bigot either.

    Intolerant might describe me if I refused to respect the choice of some people to be homosexuals, but irespect the choice even if I believe it to be wrong in many ways, and do not devalue the person for making it.

    I do, however, draw the line at any attempt to normalize this abberrant behavior. Self destructive, unnatural behavior should never be legitimized or promoted. Since some people are trying to do just that it is up to people of conscience to fight it. I am one such person, and I believe that by fighting it I am saving lives, increasing the happiness of people who, due to my efforts, choose not be homosexuals, and helping to preserve the integrity of marriage and families. This is a good thing.

    At the same time, there is something visceral about homosexuality that just really grosses me out. Kinda like the way the sight of vomit makes me sick to my stomach. It's just that gross. At least vomiting is a natural act.

    By Blogger Daniel Levesque, at 8:43 PM  

  • Dude, when you say stuff like "Nobody is born gay, it is a choice. There is no such thing as rights based on choices, only rights based on circumstances that cannot be helped" it shows your ignorance on the matter. Did you choose to be straight? Of course not. You just are straight because that's what you've always been since you first relised you had any kind of sexuality. It's who you are.

    It's really quite simple.

    And with " Self destructive, unnatural behavior should never be legitimized or promoted" you just show your hypocrisy. So I can't get married because my partner is of the same gender and because it is in your eyes worthy of pity as I am "destroying" myself? I hardly think that is the case. A loving longterm relationship, very happy together for many years now, both in good jobs, paying taxes, giving to charity, no criminal records, healthy lifestyle, doing my bit for the plantet by recycling and buying ethical food and generally being nice to others: Destroying ourselves?

    Weird twisted logic. But then there's the whole religious angle you like to apply to it. And you know what trouble that can cause in the 21st century.

    By Blogger DanProject76, at 12:33 AM  

  • And one more thing:

    Like Ranando said, you seem to be obsessed with something that you profess to find 'gross' yet you like blogging about it rather frequently. This seems a bit odd.

    I do not find the concept of making love to a beautiful woman my idea of a good time but I accept that many people are wired that way and as I will never have to experience it it doesn't realy affect my life in any way. Most of my friends are heterosexuals but I accept them.

    :-)

    By Blogger DanProject76, at 12:37 AM  

  • DP76,

    The idea that people are born gay is a lie. Everybody is born straight, and homosexuality is a choice to abandon natural, healthy desires in favor of a self-destructive perversion. Any other position on this matter is false. There nothing in science that suggests homosexuality is hereditary, but there is a mountain of evidence regarding the phychology and choice process involved in homosexuality. yes, yes, a few scientists have made "discoveries" pointing to genetic of chemical homosexuality. All of these "discoveries" have been debunked as flawed experiments that are 100% unrepeatable, or as manipulations of the data to create a deception. Also, to say that you are leading a healthy lifestyle while engaging is homosexual behavior is untrue. Homosexuali behavior itself is unhealthy and self destructive, as the fact that the average age homosexuals die at is 10-15 younger than heterosexuals, and this does NOT include the AIDS factor. AIDS strips another 10 years of the average homosexual's lifespan.

    Since you were privy to previous debates on this matter here I will repeat something for your benefit. I have known and befriended planty od homosexuals and bisexuals. I have yet to meet one who was ever truly happy. I have met many who confess to being miserable and desiring to escape what they described as their "homosexual addiction". I have also never encountered a male homosexual couple where both partners remained faithful in the relationship. Much of my position on this matter comes from firs-hand interraction with homosexuals that has convinced me that what the honest research says about homosexuality is true. Is it an illness of the mind, and homosexuals need and deserve our sympathy and help to escape their lifestyle.

    You may find all of this to be twisted, but I fully expect you to delude yourself on this matter. You must delude yourself in order to remain a homosexual and avoid utter misery. Even the supposed happiness of the homosexual community is nothing but a pretense, a bold face put on to hide the inner turmoil and misery of being trapped in such an unsatisfying and unnatural behavior.

    By Blogger Daniel Levesque, at 6:23 AM  

  • Man, your bigotry disgusts me.

    "Homosexuali behavior itself is unhealthy and self destructive, as the fact that the average age homosexuals die at is 10-15 younger than heterosexuals, and this does NOT include the AIDS factor. AIDS strips another 10 years of the average homosexual's lifespan"

    Really? How so? Any facts here? No.

    "I have known and befriended planty od homosexuals and bisexuals. I have yet to meet one who was ever truly happy."

    Well, can you blame them? With friends like you who think they are diseased perverts?

    What a nice man you are.

    By Blogger DanProject76, at 1:09 PM  

  • DP76,

    I have presented you with proven facts. Facts that are suppressed by the homosexual activist community, and your only response is a personal attack and baseless denial of the truth.

    There is no bigotry in scientifically proven facts, only truth. If you think truth is bigoted then you seriously need to reconsider your positions on everything in life.

    Iwas ot always opposed to homosexuality. I was once of a similar opinion as Dan Trabue. It was when I strted to learn the real facts that my opinions began to change. There is an unforyuate lie being told to people regarding homosexuality. That lie is that it is normal and healthy. The simple fact is that itis neither, and that homosexuals desperatly need help to escape the trap that many of them admit is, in fact, a trap.

    My own interraction withhomosexuals is what firststarted me searching for the facts. It was the open facade of happiness and loyalty, that transformed to the truth of misery, bad health, and unfulfilling relationships in private that I saw firsthand that started me questioning what I thought I knew. For every story of supposed happiness and satisfaction in homosexuality there are a thousand stories of misery, loneliness, disease, and an early death. If a drug appeared to be good for one user while destoying a thousand more we would ban it, and we do so assuming thatthe one person it seemed to help was being adversely afected as well. Such is the case with homosexuality.

    Tell me, can you honestly say that your relationship with your boyfriend has been 100% sexually loyal all this time? The statistics, as proven by studies in the Netherlands, say that at least one of you has had 8 different lovers a year throughout your relationship. Statistically speaking that gives room for 0-16 affairs a year to achieve that average. Where do each of you stand? Interestingly enough, in heterosexual relationships the statistics state that on average only half of all people in a heterosexual relationship have an affair, that's 1 affair, during the entire course of the relationship. How do you account for this vast difference in behavior if homosexuality is just like heterosexuality, only with the same sex?

    Like I said, I go with the facts. That is the one, most important thing science has taught me. The facts speak for themselves if they are presented honestly. I also learned that when the facts contradict the desired outcme they are frequently supressed and ignored in favor of illogical bias. You sir, are a victim of the latter.

    By Blogger Daniel Levesque, at 1:41 PM  

  • Daniel, I really like your blog. I'm going to add you to my blogroll. I especially liked the part where you related it to God. I've done that also. I agree with you about how a singers lifestyle can change the meaning of the song. For instance I can no longer listen to any songs by Michael Jackson. Not even songs from when he was in the Jackson 5. It disgusts me and I can't help but think about what he did to those little boys. As far as Elton John is concerned. I never really liked him. The only song I've ever liked by him is 'Candle In The Wind' and that's about Marilyn Monroe.


    Well, I like your blog except for the comments from the LIB. He's just trying to get a rise out of you. If I were you, I'd just ignore him or get http://www.haloscan.com/ it's a way of monitoring your comments and ban whoever you don't want to comment on your blog.

    It's quite obvious that at least one poster is quite obsessed with you. I went to his blog to see what it was all about and noticed he posted your picture and this blog entry:

    Wednesday, January 18, 2006
    A mass debate!
    How did it come to this? I got this reply to my points in a so-called debate on a fellow Blogger's blog. Welcome to the world of Raving Conservative with typos left in as I am too lazy to adjust them and besides, it would make me a pedant as well as a pervert:

    "DanProject76,The idea that people are born gay is a lie. Everybody is born straight, and homosexuality is a choice to abandon natural, healthy desires in favor of a self-destructive perversion. Any other position on this matter is false. There nothing in science that suggests homosexuality is hereditary, but there is a mountain of evidence regarding the phychology and choice process involved in homosexuality. yes, yes, a few scientists have made "discoveries" pointing to genetic of chemical homosexuality. All of these "discoveries" have been debunked as flawed experiments that are 100% unrepeatable, or as manipulations of the data to create a deception. Also, to say that you are leading a healthy lifestyle while engaging is homosexual behavior is untrue. Homosexuali behavior itself is unhealthy and self destructive, as the fact that the average age homosexuals die at is 10-15 younger than heterosexuals, and this does NOT include the AIDS factor. AIDS strips another 10 years of the average homosexual's lifespan.Since you were privy to previous debates on this matter here I will repeat something for your benefit. I have known and befriended planty od homosexuals and bisexuals. I have yet to meet one who was ever truly happy. I have met many who confess to being miserable and desiring to escape what they described as their "homosexual addiction". I have also never encountered a male homosexual couple where both partners remained faithful in the relationship. Much of my position on this matter comes from firs-hand interraction with homosexuals that has convinced me that what the honest research says about homosexuality is true. Is it an illness of the mind, and homosexuals need and deserve our sympathy and help to escape their lifestyle.You may find all of this to be twisted, but I fully expect you to delude yourself on this matter. You must delude yourself in order to remain a homosexual and avoid utter misery. Even the supposed happiness of the homosexual community is nothing but a pretense, a bold face put on to hide the inner turmoil and misery of being trapped in such an unsatisfying and unnatural behavior."

    But just how did it all started? Well, I shall explain. Raving Conservative got disturbed by the fact that he was listening to Elton John and thinking about the context of love songs by men about women and that. He posted:

    "...then I thought of it in the context of the singer singing to another woman, and my enjoyment of the song diminished as the message changed froma good one to an abberration. This got me thinking about Elton John, who has made many masterpieces, some truly fantastic love songs. He is a homosexual, and that means that, coming from him, he is singing his love to another man. Remember that pictures flow through music. This new perspective changed the pictures that flow through his love songs in such a way that, well, let's just say I don't want to listen any of his love songs anymore."

    I found this quite a shame so I told him so, in my polite voice:

    "If you like Elton's songs you like his songs. It's really quite straightforward. If you don't like them because of who he is married to then there's a word for people like you. "

    But this got him riled once more, as I should have known:

    "Homosexuality is a prominent sociopolitical issue, and as such it deserves some serious research and thought. This especially considering the way the homosexual activists are trying to reshape American culture."

    I should have stopped myself but I didn't:

    "So you think that there is some kind of gay conspiracy to make the whole world gay? Because that's what Rosa Parks sat at the front of the bus for. She had her black face paint ready for all those white folks."

    The inevitable response soon followed:

    "It is a pure fallacy to compare homosexual rights to racially motivated equal rights movement of the 60's. Nobody can help being born a certain skin color. Nobody is born gay, it is a choice. There is no such thing as rights based on choices, only rights based on circumstances that cannot be helped."

    So my final attempts at logic were typed up and posted:

    "Dude, when you say stuff like "Nobody is born gay, it is a choice. There is no such thing as rights based on choices, only rights based on circumstances that cannot be helped" it shows your ignorance on the matter. Did you choose to be straight? Of course not. You just are straight because that's what you've always been since you first relised you had any kind of sexuality. It's who you are.It's really quite simple. And with " Self destructive, unnatural behavior should never be legitimized or promoted" you just show your hypocrisy. So I can't get married because my partner is of the same gender and because it is in your eyes worthy of pity as I am "destroying" myself? I hardly think that is the case. A loving longterm relationship, very happy together for many years now, both in good jobs, paying taxes, giving to charity, no criminal records, healthy lifestyle, doing my bit for the plantet by recycling and buying ethical food and generally being nice to others: Destroying ourselves? Weird twisted logic. But then there's the whole religious angle you like to apply to it. And you know what trouble that can cause in the 21st century. "

    And then I remembered I had more to say:

    "And one more thing:Like Ranando (another blog poster) said, you seem to be obsessed with something that you profess to find 'gross' yet you like blogging about it rather frequently. This seems a bit odd. I do not find the concept of making love to a beautiful woman my idea of a good time but I accept that many people are wired that way and as I will never have to experience it it doesn't realy affect my life in any way. Most of my friends are heterosexuals but I accept them. :-) "

    So now we know. I really should know better than to have a discussion with ignorant 'Christian' types who can't use logic in a discussion and can only relate to the world through the writings in a very old book. But then he loves George Bush and can't see any faults in the way his own country is behaving in the bigger picture of that thing called 'the rest of the world.'

    By Blogger D. Maria, at 2:55 PM  

  • Maria,

    Thanks for your kind words and praise, and for letting me know about DP76's post in response to my own blogging. I am utterly unsurprised that he was so moved since I am challenging the validity of his lifestyle. I actually consider it a complement that I am able to motivate people, even if it is because my factually based positions offend their misinformed, biased, and sometimes bigoted positions on important matters. Perhaps someone who reads his blog will be motivated to do some real research into the facts aout homosexuality and learn the truth, as I have, as a result of this. I consider this to be a success.

    Note that he chose to leave out every compassionate statement I made, as well as an entire response where I wished him health and happines. Had he not done so it would have destroyed his assertion that I am an ignorant bigot. Such is life.

    By Blogger Daniel Levesque, at 4:56 PM  

  • Dan'l, you're not challenging MY lifestyle and yet I find your "facts" to be ridiculous. I've gay friends who are happy and as well-adjusted as anyone.

    Who'd choose to be gay in a world with such hostility towards them? To the degree that gays and lesbians are depressed, it is because of rampant oppressive behavior, not their "lifestyle."

    And, for your education, my gay and lesbian friends' lifestyles include getting up and going to work everyday, going to church on wednesday and sunday, babysitting my kids and all the kids at church just for the joy of being with kids and just out of the kindness to the parents. It includes working with the homeless, the ill, the mentally ill. It includes being parents, getting married (although not legally recognized as such) and having lifelong caring and committed relationships.

    THAT's the "gay lifestyle" for you. Are there some gay folk who are promiscuous? Sure, just as there are some straight folk who are.

    We're all just folk, Daniel. Born the way we are and influenced by the folk around us, trying to get by and for the most part trying to lead decent lives without harassment. Is that unreasonable?

    By Blogger Dan Trabue, at 3:43 AM  

  • Who said anything about harrassing anybody? I taliking about right and wrong, healthy and unhealthy, scientifically proven facts, and the fact that these people need compassion and help. Why is it that so many people con't seem to understand the difference between that nad ignorance an hate? My theory: it destroys their illusion of persecution and allows critics to be humanized.

    Have I once accused homosexuals of being unproductive? Have I once accused them of being icabable of love? Have once made a generalization about homosexuals so broad as to cover every aspect of their lives? The answer is "no" on all counts. For some reason supporters of homosexuality are here obsessing about things I am not criticising, and ignoring the facts and the call to help them escape their self-destucion. Is anyone here other than me willing to do such a deed? Do you not love your fellow man enough to render such vital assistance?

    By Blogger Daniel Levesque, at 6:00 AM  

  • Just as you have trouble with the artists or composers of some of the pop music, I have the same difficulty with actors, directors,producers, etc, and won't watch many movies or TV shows because of their politics. I've not made the same move towards music. Maybe it is hypocritical, but a good song is a good song, and Elton's first, and one of his best, "Your Song," I don't think he wrote. I always relate music to my own experience, unless it is a style I don't like, like most of rap, and any nasty music.

    Most gays are Liberals, and I just have trouble with their politics, and some of their agenda, but at the same time, I never met any gay person who chose their sexuality. There are some who can be changed, but the majority cannot. What makes someone this way, we may never know, but historically, a portion of the population just is.

    Probably my biggest disagreement with gays is their own intolerance. They expect that societies should move faster to have full acceptance of them and their lifestyles, but it is not right to expect all people to be accepting of a lifestyle they think is wrong.

    By Blogger Rick's Corner, at 6:56 PM  

  • Daniel,

    Thanks to Rick, I just had a thought about your original post. You said that you saw Elton John’s love songs in a different light because is gay. But he didn’t write those songs. Nearly all of Elton John’s lyrics were written by Bernie Taupin who, having been married four times and having produced children, is probably not gay. So it isn’t the words that are gay, it’s the melody?

    And anyway, I don’t understand why you disapprove of gays when you must know that God created homosexuals or at least allowed them to become homosexual. If he allows this, then who are you to call his work an aberration? Have you taken this up with him? What did he have to say about your disapproval?

    By Anonymous cjb, at 8:03 PM  

  • CJB,

    You seem to have overlooked the Devil. Or have you forgotten that Christians believe that the world has temporarily been handed over to the Prince of Lies for corruption so it can be redeemed?

    By Blogger Daniel Levesque, at 9:59 PM  

  • Daniel: the world has temporarily been handed over to the Prince of Lies for corruption so it can be redeemed

    Whoa, how long has this been going on? You mean that God doesn’t control anything at the moment? So there is no point in praying for anything because he isn’t in control? I’m guessing that means any recently reported miracles must be delusions on the part of the observers as well. So, right now, it’s just as if he doesn’t even exist? When will this end?

    By Anonymous cjb, at 10:32 PM  

  • CJB,

    All of your response bespeaks complte ignorance, and you should really know what your talking about before you go off on such a silly rant. To all but the last sentance I have this to say: Read the Bible. You will learn enough to not make yourself sound stupid when discussing Christianity, even if you should choose not to believe what you read. To the last, it all ends when Jesus returns and claims this world as His own once agin, a day when Satan will be foreer bound in Hell where he will no longer be allowed to decoeve humanity. Be aware the he is working desperately to ensure as many of us (humans) join him there as possible. He hates every last one of us that much.

    By Blogger Daniel Levesque, at 6:13 AM  

  • Daniel,

    Apparently you can’t take a joke. I was lampooning your statement that the world had been handed over temporarily. You made it sound as though God was out to lunch.

    By Anonymous cjb, at 11:41 AM  

  • I'm feeling waaaay to dull right now to jump into an argument, so I'll just comment on your original post and ignore all this.

    I agree with you that we should really think where the music is coming from.
    I like the Eagles' sound, but as a Christian, I wouldn't buy their music or listen to their songs because of how much they were into New Age mysticism. (Anyone remember "Hotel California"?)

    Liberals are against violent rap lyrics, and insist - rightly - that it influences people sometimes even to the point of comitting crimes. Yet they refuse to believe there are other lifestyles being pushed. If a guy's a "gangsta", chances are he's advocating gangsta lifestyles. Same for if the guy's homosexual, into mysticism etc.
    If you don't have a problem with the homosexual lifestyle, listen to Elton John.
    Others aren't okay with it personally, so they don't listen. Nobody's trying to ban his music.

    By Blogger Rebekah, at 12:31 PM  

  • The difference between gangsta music that would glorify crimes and abusive behavior and Elton's love songs are that Elton's songs are glorifying love, friendship, etc. Nothing illegal or immoral.

    You don't want to listen, it's your right. But don't compare criminal and/or violent behavior to legal and loving behavior. That's perverse.

    Not that I'm a fan of EJ, necessarily...when I was a kid I remember getting into an argument with a bud, saying that Elton John was just goofy, with his big glasses and all and that he wouldn't last. The band I thought would last? KC and the Sunshine Band...

    D'oh!

    By Blogger Dan Trabue, at 3:00 PM  

  • "Nothing illegal or immoral"

    First, homosexuality IS immoral, not to mention wildly destuctive to the homosexuals, and to the society that normalizes such behavior. Second, when Elton John came out of the closet in the sixties, it was still illegal in evry state of the Union, primarily in the form of soddomy laws, as was adultery, whic is somehow legal in most now. Tell me, do you agree that adultery should be illegal again?

    By Blogger Daniel Levesque, at 8:03 AM  

  • "First, homosexuality IS immoral"

    Says you. This is one father, husband, Christian, deacon, US citizen that says it isn't.

    "Tell me, do you agree that adultery should be illegal again?"

    No, I do not think adultery should be illegal (it'd put our government out of business, for one thing!). Some small gov't advocate you are...

    By Blogger Dan Trabue, at 8:55 AM  

  • Dan: you think homosexuality is fine, I don't. To Christians like me- and others - it's just as offensive as advocating the "gansta" lifestyle. I think you agree with me that someone who's living a certain lifestyle can't help but advocate that and probably will.
    What exactly is wrong with choosing not to listen to something or someone you disagree with?

    By Blogger Rebekah, at 5:07 PM  

  • Dan'l askeed me a question and I answered. So why do I not just keep silent?

    1. It's healthy to debate.
    2. It's enjoyable/interesting to hear how others think.
    3. When someone states something as fact ("homosexuality is immoral." Period.) when it's just an opinion, it opens itself up to challenge.
    4. When someone seems to be speaking for a group (ie, Church) when they don't speak for all within that group it opens itself to challenge.
    5. As long as Daniel doesn't mind me adding to the conversation, I'd like to participate.

    That's why.

    By Blogger Dan Trabue, at 2:46 AM  

  • Dan,

    How do you reconcile the verses of the Bible declaring homosexuality to be a crime against God worthy of death, and declaring that homosexuals will never see Heaven with your belief that homosexuality is okay? (Note that I used both Old and New Testament references here, Leviticus and Corinthians) Don't waste my time by saying that Jesus said nothing against it personaly because He also said nothing for it personaly, and if you believe, as I do, as well as all Christians I have ever known to date, that the Trinity is a triune God and not 3 different Gods then Jesus is the same God who damned homosexuality in the Old Testament.

    By Blogger Daniel Levesque, at 12:38 PM  

  • Maybe Dan Trabue is the kind of man who makes up his mind on these things by experiencing the world rather than being told what to think and blindly following it.

    Just my opinion.

    And no I am not trying to disrespect your lifestyle choice.

    By Blogger DanProject76, at 2:15 PM  

  • daniel asked:
    "How do you reconcile the verses..."

    Fairly easily, actually.

    The OT says in one place that gays are to be killed, along with disrespectful children. But we don't believe that, do we? Not you. Not me. We're in agreement there, I think. No problem.

    The Corinthian verse says homosexual offenders will not inherit Heaven. But what are homosexual offenders? I don't know. NOR DO YOU. Nor do even the biblical translators.

    I'd suggest that two folk of the same gender living together in a marriage situation are not "homosexual offenders." I don't know that for sure (just as you don't know that it means ALL homosexuals) but it makes sense to me in the greater context of God's word.

    Further, the Corinthian verse also condemns the greedy. Tell me: Do you think churches spend nearly as much time and money lately battling the clear sin of greed (as it is condemned throughout the bible repeatedly, so no mistake is made) over the ambiguous "sin" of "homosexual offender"? Have you?

    [and for the record, the word there is translated variously as:
    homosexuals
    abusers of themselves with mankind
    homosexual offenders
    men who practice homosexuality (I guess lesbians are cool with God, then?)
    And "sodomites" which I believe is the closest to a literal translation, but as we've reviewed before, the "sin of sodom" was defined by God as being greed and inhospitality in Ezekiel, or perhaps rape and violence as defined circumstantially in Genesis, not homosexuality...]

    If you're going to take the bible literally, it is better to have a clear understanding of what you are taking literal, rather than relying upon poor exegesis and traditions.

    By Blogger Dan Trabue, at 3:09 AM  

  • "If you're going to take the bible literally, it is better to have a clear understanding of what you are taking literal, rather than relying upon poor exegesis and traditions"

    Too true, which is why it blows my mind the way you misinterperet so much.

    For example, we can both agree that Children being disrespectful is still a sin, though niether one of us is going to execute a chronichally disrespectful child. However, you extrapolate this same circumstance to mean that homosexuality is no longer a sin even though Jesus never made any such declaration. Homosexuality is called an abomination unto God, which makes it very clear that homoexual offenders are anyone who practice homosexuality. In the New Testament we are warned that God will hand men over to unnatural (sexual) desires for their own destuction, and yet you conveniently ignore this fact so you can try to justify sin. "I forget whoo made this declaration . . .Oh yeah, JESUS! So much for HIm not saying anything anything about homosexuality. He did say something, and it was not favorable.)

    Your lack of Biblical knowledge and understanding astounds me.

    By Blogger Daniel Levesque, at 6:00 AM  

  • Oh man, you had so much more fun on your post than I did on my post, but my poster still tried the same arguments....

    By Blogger ScottG, at 9:43 AM  

  • Eating shrimp is called an abomination Brother Daniel. Are we to extrapolate from that that it remains a sin today and that those who imbibe ought to be stoned?

    Daniel, my sweet little ol' 5th grade Sunday School teacher would rip you a new one for accusing me of lacking Bible knowledge. You may disagree with the interpretation I have, but I would think it clear by now, after continually offering up scriptural bases for my positions that I DO know of what the bible says. You disagree with my positions, not my knowledge.

    "Oh yeah, JESUS! So much for HIm not saying anything anything about homosexuality."

    Watch out for them lightning bolts for taking the Lord's name in vain.

    By Blogger Dan Trabue, at 3:07 AM  

  • "Eating shrimp is called an abomination Brother Daniel."

    And yet the Bible clearly atates that Jesus sanctified all food. He never did so regarding homosexuality, adultery, fornication, or any other sexual sin. Indeed, in regards to sexual conduct He actually clamped down on it by declaring divoerce to be adultery except on th ecase of adultery or abandonment on the part of th espouse, and even then declared that we should seek reconciliation rather than divorce.

    You keep bringing up the shrimp thing, and yoe keep ignoring the above facts. This is the kind of sloppy Bilibal arguing that has me saying that your Bible knowlegde is lacking.

    Not also that rather than addressing th ewords of Jesus as I laid them out for you regarding sexual misconduct, and homosexuality in particular, you ignored the argument and accused me of blasphemy for, what(?), Capitalizing Jesus' name? Again, you have shown yourself to be cornered. you may as well admit that the Bible condemns homosexuality from beginning to end, and that there is no Biblical justification for that abomination. Yes, I know it goes against what your church believes, but if I had to choose between what the Church says and what the Bible says I would go with the Bible every time.

    Finally, you DO ralize that it is possible to love a group of people, and individual persons whithout approving of everything they do, right? Look at the example God has et regardin gIsrael, and all of mankind as well. We do so much that displeases God, and yet He loves us and chastizes us. In th efinal equasion tough, those who reject Jesus are doomed to an eternity in Hell, while those who serve Jesus are going to be graciously allowed into Heaven in spite of our sins. Go figure.

    By Blogger Daniel Levesque, at 6:12 AM  

  • Daniel, I have a quick question that is sort of a tangent. You said, "those who reject Jesus are doomed to an eternity in Hell, while those who serve Jesus are going to be graciously allowed into Heaven in spite of our sins."

    So what do you think happens to people who are raised in a society dominated by another religion? For example, a perfectly benevolent person raised in an area where Islam is the predominant religion. Sociological studies show that there is a hugely overwhelming probability that that person will reject Jesus and instead follow Islam, and the only real reason for this is that he/she was raised as a Muslim in a society dominated by that culture. That person never really had a chance to become otherwise, statistically. Is that person doomed to hell simply because of the culture he or she was born into? That is the ultimate punishment for not really being in control of the entire situaiton. That doesn't seem very loving, understanding, or forgiving to me.

    By Anonymous Paul Birkmeyer, at 6:54 AM  

  • It's just that I find it ironic that the person who'd say that Jesus would be cool with Christians engaging in war to accuse ME of twisting the Bible.

    I would think that even you must admit that your torturing of Jesus' teaching to allow for war-making is a much larger leap than my interpretation of gay issues. But I'd be wrong, you wouldn't admit such.

    I accused you of blasphemy for putting words in Jesus' mouth and would add now that to silence Jesus' teaching on peacemaking is heretical, too.

    I'll say it again, we don't know what word the biblical writers intended in those few phrases in the NT where it hints at homosexuality. That leaves us with two passages in the OT that are part of the Holiness Code that we no longer observe (and the phrasing there is not especially helpful - two men who lay together?)

    I know you disagree and that's fine but I'll say this again: Homosexuality, if it is dealt with at all in the bible - is a MINOR piddling thing. When we focus on the cheesier elements of the bible and in so doing forgo the weightier meat of God's Word, we do so to our own soul's harm, not to mention the world's.

    By Blogger Dan Trabue, at 6:56 AM  

  • This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

    By Blogger ScottG, at 11:44 AM  

  • Hey Daniel,
    Your guy is following me around now...here.

    And for Paul, yes, those who never even hear about Jesus and have no "chance" are lost. It's hard to fathom, but it's not God's fault that sin keeps people away. Adam and Eve sinned, all are guilty. However the Bible leads one to believe that their punishment won't be as great as those actively opposed to God. Blame ourselves and the devil for it not God.

    By Blogger ScottG, at 11:53 AM  

  • "yes, those who never even hear about Jesus and have no "chance" are lost."

    This is one theory amongst Christians, but not the only one.

    [I know this is a tangent but just wanted a quick response to offer the other side]

    CS Lewis, in one of his Narnia books, the Last Battle, offers this story:

    Aslan is the lion/god-figure. Tash is a cruel false god. As the world ends, Aslan is sorting "the sheep and the goats," and he admits one of Tash's followers in to "heaven."

    "Why is this?" asked one of Aslan's followers.

    "Because, this man acted with love and grace, which are MY domain," Aslan replied. "When he acted in love, even though he did so in the name of Tash, he was doing it as a follower of the True God, for one can not do acts of God except the one true god."

    Jesus offered a similar story, of the two brothers. One who said he'd do his father's command but didn't and one who said he wouldn't but did. Jesus said the brother who did as the father wished was the True Follower, not the one who said he would.

    All words above are my paraphrase.

    This would be another Christian view of God and Heaven.

    Sorry for responding to a tangent, DL!

    By Blogger Dan Trabue, at 12:25 PM  

  • Dan T,

    By al means, feel free to respond to anything here. I always welcome your input, even if it frequently mistaken.

    For my take on the tangent, I am with ScottG onthis, and Iwill slightly expand his explanation.

    There are nukerous references in the Bible to varying degrees of torment in Hell, as well as varying degrees of reward in Heaven. It is made fairly clear that the virtuouperson who is ignorant of od will have it immensely easier than those who reject God outright, who will in turn have it immensely easier than hyppocrites and false teachers, who will in turn have it easier than The Antichrist and Satan himself. For God punihes those inHell according to their sin, and rewards those in Heaven according to their good works.

    If sin had never entered the world through Adam and Eve we would not be facing this problem today. It is only through the love and grace of OurLord God who gave us a way to escape the punishemnt we all deserve that we are not all doomed for eternity. Given that, I think fairness is hardly part of the equasion since, in all fairness, we should all be damned.

    By Blogger Daniel Levesque, at 12:33 PM  

  • Oh please will you stop going on and on about a book of fairy tales as though they were real. You have absolutely no good reason to believe that anything in the Bible is true and yet you base your life on it. These endless debates about what the Bible does or doesn’t say are pointless. It is a work of fictional nonsense.

    By Anonymous cjb, at 1:47 PM  

  • Thanks to all who responded to my tangential question. I will just succinctly say that I would respect the God that Dan T envisions as one who is at least reasonable and compassionate. On the other hand, I would think that the God of scottg and Daniel L is a jealous, immature God with a lack of respect for the huge sociological constraints on people of this world of his own creation. Surely he realized that this scenario would arise in the world he created with his omniscience, and still refuses to allow those without a real chance of learning of Him into heaven. That is my big problem with God in this light. Just my opinion, though. I don't want to drag this out since it is a huge departure from the original post, unless Daniel is moved to do so.

    By Anonymous Paul, at 2:02 PM  

  • Dan,
    You are correct that there are different views by those who call themselves Christians. Just to clarify for everyone, I don't claim to know everything, and I'm hardly the best example of a Christian. Still, you said "This is one theory amongst Christians, but not the only one." If by that you mean unitarian universalism, they are wrong. St. Paul said if Jesus wasn't who he said he was, then Christians are the most miserable people there are. If there was any way to heaven besides admitting you're sinful and need forgiveness and accepting Jesus as Lord, why go through all the pain and suffering He did? The answer is: There is no other way to be saved other than accepting Jesus. Good works don't do it. Therefore the Narnia reference is not valid as an indicator of salvation. "He that believeth and is baptized shall be saved." Not "anyone who thinks they do good, or do good for someone, but happens to not accept Jesus, is in."

    If you'll notice also, the separation of sheep and goats happens separately from the judgement. Although both sides are confronted with the same "I was thirsty...", that is not the determinate as to heaven or hell.

    CJB, guess what? If I'm right, I win. And if you're right? I still win! I won't get punished either way!

    Paul, itching after gospels that suit you is talked about too.

    Why is it that people can't seem to grasp that there is nothing good in us at all and we all deserve hell right now, but God offers a way out? We say it's horrendous that some people will never hear the Truth and so be lost without the chance to say yes. It does hurt to realize that's the truth, especially when you have friends you love who won't listen, knowing you won't be with them after the last day. Unfortunately for us, sin entered the world and ruined everything, but not really.

    You see, God Himself suffered the penalty of sin when he didn't have to. What isn't compassionate about that!? How anyone cannot be moved by this is bizarre. Also, please notice all these constraints Paul, were not put on man by God, but by man on himself. Again, don't blame God for this.

    By Blogger ScottG, at 2:50 PM  

  • Scott G, when you said the following were you having a joke? : "Why is it that people can't seem to grasp that there is nothing good in us at all and we all deserve hell right now, but God offers a way out? ... Unfortunately for us, sin entered the world and ruined everything, but not really."

    I am not trying to cause trouble but I seriously couldn't tell if that was irony or not. If it wasn't then I'm quite scared of your world, mate!

    By Blogger DanProject76, at 2:58 PM  

  • Scottg: And if you're right? I still win! I won't get punished either way!

    You may win, but we certainly don’t. We have to suffer in a world of benighted people who regard homosexuality as an abomination, who would stifle the education of children because it conflicts with their beliefs and who will go to war against those who don’t believe in the same fairy tales.

    You may not be punished for your irrational beliefs, but that is no excuse to use them to punish us.

    By Anonymous cjb, at 4:43 PM  

  • DP76,

    No. He was not joking. He paraphrased the words of Jesus.

    CJB,
    "We have to suffer in a world of benighted people who regard homosexuality as an abomination, who would stifle the education of children because it conflicts with their beliefs and who will go to war against those who don’t believe in the same fairy tales."

    I absolutley agree with you. Most Christians Do believe homosexuality is an abomination because that is the word used to describe it in the Bible. We DO have people stifling education because it conflicts with their beliefs, but I would point out that secularists are guilty of this too since they are responsible for suppressing scientific education that does not support their favorite theories despite what science says. Evolutionists actually held back the field of embryology for over 100 years in order supress the truth that Haekel engaged in scientific fraud with his famous sketches of embryos. The Pre-Cambrian fosssil beds in Canada were kept hidden by the paleontologist who discovered them because they revealed a world contrary to the one proposed in Darwin's "On the Origin of the Species". Just to name a couple of examples. And yes, people do go to war over differences in religion, which you are choosing to call fairy tales despite your inability to prove them as such. Religious wars are not good, and I seriously doubt wants anyone running aound killing people in His name.

    The problem with all of this isn't God. The problem is man. It is our sin nature that causes us to perform all of these things. homosexuality, wars both holy and otherwise, theft, murder, fraud, oppression,even death itself are all a result of humanity bringing sin to the world. You might ask the question of why God allowed humanity to bring sin to the world. I don't know for certain, but my theory, based on my understanding of the Bible, is that God imbued us with free will, and He chose to respect our ability to choose even when it meant we would suffer the consequences of sin. It is also my understanding that, in spite of our sin nature, God has offered us a way to be rescued from our inevitable fate, and that lifesaver is His son Jesus Christ, that I know for certain.

    By Blogger Daniel Levesque, at 6:08 AM  

  • I really object, as would most sane people to homosexuality being a part of a 'sin list' that includes "wars both holy and otherwise, theft, murder, fraud, oppression,even death"

    It's hardly in that league!

    What about intolerance?

    By Blogger DanProject76, at 9:39 AM  

  • DP76,

    What about universal truth?

    What about sin being wrong no matter what sin it is?

    What about homosexuals tolerating the Christian viewpoint that homosexuality is just as sinful as fornication and adultery?

    Truth be told, I have seen far more intolerance coming from homosexuals, especialy toward evangelical Christians like myself, than the other way around. People who think homosexuality are automatically labelled as bigots, ignorant, or hateful by homosexuals who, in turn, refuse to consider the Christian point of view. so who are the REAL bigots? Who is REALY intlerant?

    Finally, who says that sin should be tolerated? Certainly not God.

    By Blogger Daniel Levesque, at 11:54 AM  

  • that sould have read:

    . . . peole who think homoexuality is wrong are labelled . . .

    By Blogger Daniel Levesque, at 11:54 AM  

  • But what about all the people who don't live their lives according to your specific strict rules? Not everyone is down with the Jesus and God crew. It doesn't make them bad people.

    I'm getting off the point anyway. Let's agree to disagree and both believe ourselves to be right. Different views, different sexualities and pretty much living in different worlds.

    By Blogger DanProject76, at 3:17 PM  

  • And so, Dan Project 76 declares defeat here and my blog and leaves. But really it was fun....

    By Blogger ScottG, at 4:09 PM  

  • Oh how very 'playground' ...

    I knew you'd crow about it.

    I am off to go give my husband a big kiss and a cuddle.

    By Blogger DanProject76, at 4:00 AM  

  • Don't forget to put on old Elton....

    By Blogger ScottG, at 5:12 PM  

  • Elton? Jesus, no! His music is insipid and the tunes he composes on his piano have the potential to make the nation turn gay! His lyrics are written by a heterosexual so I can listen to those but only if someone heterosexual sings them. But then it would turn me heterosexual!

    It's all so complicated living in the world of Conservative logic!

    By Blogger DanProject76, at 2:05 AM  

  • I am conservative, and the logic is very simple.
    Let me ask you this, Why are you mocking and twisting what was orginially said about the EJ song?

    It's strange how homosexuals complain about intolerance and being made fun of, but I see that behavior most often coming from them toward people who have differing views.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 9:58 PM  

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