Wednesday, October 26, 2005

Regarding Sodom: Who's Sane?

When I was broadcasting tournaments for The Golf Channel, we used to giggle at the prospect of Brian Gay, Dicky Pride, and Glen Day playing in the same group, thus giving us the Gay-Pride-Day threesome. Something tells me the gag would be lost on Fred Phelps.

He's the pastor of the Westboro Baptist Church in Topeka, Kansas, and I use all of the aforementioned terms - he, pastor, and Westboro Baptist Church - loosely. That's the "church" which, under Phelps' direction, has understood the mission of Christ to mean picketing at the funerals of people like Matthew Shepard, the young man from Wyoming who was fatally beaten many years ago primarily because he was gay. Phelps and company used the funeral as an opportunity to inform grieving family members that Shepard was now in hell and that he had an eternity of suffering to look forward to. In fact, you can find a jaunty memorial to Shepard's entry into hell - complete with a running total of how many days he's been there and a sound file of someone pretending to be Shepard screaming in torment - on the church website, the address of which is

(Editor's Note: "Fag" is a favorite term of Phelps and his churchfolk, who are quick to note that these reprobates are not living a lifestyle that honors God, as laid forth in Scripture. What's interesting to me is that both "Matthew" and a variation of "Shepard" are found in my Bible. "Fag" is not.)

At that website, you'll also discover that Billy Graham is a modern-day Judas; find out that God is America's terrorist now, using natural disasters and other means to punish the U.S. for its collective sin; and learn of opportunities where you can join the church in picketing at the funerals of fallen U.S. soldiers to inform those families that their loved ones have also begun a slow burn. Mainly, though, the site and apparently Phelps, himself, are dedicated to the notion that homosexuality is the one sin that really gets God's dander up.

Phelps doesn't care what you or anyone else thinks about him. His mission is to "preach the gospel" at whatever cost.

Let me say this to those readers who already had a bad taste in their mouths about religion: please don't lump us in with people such as Fred Phelps and the Westboro Baptist Church who twist Scripture into whatever they want it to be and then use it as a weapon. We're not all like them. Some of us are worse.

Tuesday, October 04, 2005

Inquiring Minds Want To Know

The magazine cover featured two subjects, arm in arm and surrounded by water as the headline screamed,

"What Went Wrong?"

In times of national crisis, it is incumbent on America's journalists to ask the tough questions and discover the truth. Our forefathers died for the freedom of an investigative press. That and a dependable Best and Worst Dressed List.

That's why I salute People Magazine for getting to the bottom of the Kenny Chesney-Renee Zellweger marriage annulment. America thanks you.

Here's another question: did anyone really expect these nuptials to survive Daylight Savings Time? What went wrong? How 'bout Zellweger saying "yes" when Chesney first asked her out?

And did you see the reason given for the divorce? Fraud! Really? You mean these performers might have pretended to be people they really aren't? Didn't see that one coming. Whatever you do, though, please don't tell my wife that fraud is a legitimate cause for divorce. The judge would have his decision made before his robe wrinkled.

As we collectively mourn this national tragedy, we would all do well to remember the words of Patrick Henry, who once said, "Give me Liberty or give me death...or at the very least give me The 50 Most Beautiful People Latin Edition..."


When Obi met Barbie...

She's learned Bionicles and baseball by following her big brothers; she's learned pink and pretty by following her heart. Here's how Anna Claire resolves the two:

Amy: Anna Claire, what do you think you could be for Halloween?

AC (age 3): A princess!

Amy: What could the boys be?

AC: Um, maybe my bodyguards?


You may have read where several members of the New York Yankees questioned the Texas Rangers for taking their best players out early so they could get standing ovations from the home fans in the last game of the year against the L.A. Angels, a game the Angels won and, in so doing, clinched home-field advantage against the Yanks in the first round of the playoffs. Had the Rangers won, New York would've had home-field.

Memo to the Yankees: Your payroll is roughly the GDP of Belgium. Try mixing in an extra win here and there rather than asking a bottom feeder to do your dirty work.


Basic math tells me the difference between 6 and 36 is 30. But conversations like this one between a 6-year-old boy and his 36-year-old dad lead me to believe the distance is much greater.

Nicholas: We talked about things that are green today at school, and I said the Green Bay Packers.

Me (as I made a left turn): What else did you all come up with? A green light?

Nicholas: No.

Me: How about money?

Nicholas: No.

Me: What then?

Nicholas: Grass, leaves, a bush, and a frog.

Isn't jade a shade of green? I like his list better.