Reading the Bible

Slacktivist’s Fred Clark talks about how some conservatives are just willfully wrong when interpreting the Bible. Sometimes I forget there are some rational, thoughtful Christians who aren’t afraid of science:

One of my pet-peeve misconceptions is the notion that an illiterately literal reading of Genesis 1-11 is somehow an expression of “conservative” theology.

It isn’t.

Of course this “literal” belief in the six-day creation of a young earth isn’t liberal theology either. It’s just bad theology. Not orthodox, not conservative or liberal, justwrong — just a weirdly misleading way to read this text.

Bad theology and wrong theology shouldn’t be blithely equated with conservative theology. Yes, Al Mohler is a young-earth creationist and he’s right-wing politically. But just because he’s a political conservative doesn’t mean that his disrespectful abuse of Genesis is also “conservative.” His disrespectful abuse of this scripture is only just that — the disrespectful abuse of scripture.

That’s partly why I like this engaging short video on “Science and Genesis” (via here)– because it refuses to play this game of calling modern, illiterate literalism “conservative.” The video features a bunch of fairly conservative Protestant theologians treating the text with respect. This ain’t liberal theology, and it’s not some kind of radical new cutting-edge approach to the text.

This is how Christians read the Bible. The actual Bible — not the make-believe one of the make-believe “conservatives.”

Voter ID law a huge threat in PA

In case you’ve wondered how much damage voter suppression laws might do to Democratic candidates:

The number of Pennsylvanians who might not have the photo identification necessary to vote this November has more than doubled: at least 1,636,168 registered voters, or 20 percent of Pennsylvania voters, may not have valid PennDOT-issued ID, according to new data obtained by City Paper. In Philadelphia, an enormous 437,237 people, or 43 percent of city voters, may not possess the valid PennDOT ID necessary to vote under the state’s controversial new law…

The bar

My friend just took the Oregon bar exam yesterday. It wasn’t made any easier by the fact that she was having another MS episode (from the stress) and lost most of her vision, but she took the damned thing anyway and from her description, I’m pretty sure she passed.

It’s a funny thing about adult students. They’re always in a panic, insisting that they did terribly and will flunk out. And you know, I don’t know even one who did.

But anyway, it’s been a long haul. She spent a good 18 months obsessing over the LSATs (ah yes, I remember it well!), explained to me why she’d never, ever get into an Ivy League law school (she just graduated from Cornell) and then when she got in, she kept telling me she thought she flunked her exams.

So let’s hear it for the middle-aged students! Yay!

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