Thursday, November 29, 2007

Cell Phones and Coffee Don't Mix

As I was minding my own business driving along I-29 on my way to spiritual direction I had my cell phone/PDA on my lap and my steaming cup of java in the cup holder. As I drove along peacefully, listening Fox News Radio, my phone ever so gently slid off of my lap and plopped itself right into the coffee.

So let this be a warning to all reading this, coffee and cell phones don't mix, so keep them far, far apart.

22 comments:

Anne said...

Cell phones and cement driveways are not a good combo either...off to the cellphone store...

Frank Q. said...

Fox News Radio? Are you kidding me?! Wow, this explains so much. Let me guess, you are a huge Bill O'Reilly fan as well. Biased "News" and the religious don't mix if you ask me. Sad...
Check out fair.org for some insight.

Anonymous said...

Acutally, the proper punctuation for your sentence should be: "Are you kidding me!?". Also, who says that you should only listen to fair.org? A wise man listens to many voices, and then discerns from there.

A Simple Sinner said...

Cell phones and that Atlantic Ocean do not mix well at all either...

Frank Q. said...

A wise man doesn't anonymously waste time correcting grammer on a blog, but a wise-ass would. And if you want more "voices", try the University of Maryland's Program on International Policy Attitudes who found that Fox News recipients had significantly more misperceptions about the Iraq War than those who got their news from other sources. Or, consider the Pew Research Center for the People & the Press, or Media Matters for America, or Accuracy in Media. You want an unbiased assessment? Check out http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fox_News_Channel_controversies

Anonymous said...

Frank's point was stronger before he mentioned Wikipedia as a reference. Pew and the U of MD are much more believable organs of study and research than a website that isn't even accepted as a legitimate source of research in America's high schools. --AJF.

Frank said...

"isn't even accepted as a legitimate source of research in America's high schools" - do you have a source for that? To my knowledge this is still being heavily debated. At any rate, I agree with your hesitancy to use it as a reference. I merely point to it as a source that lists multiple references - from both sides of the Fox News Debate (over 100 references). BTW, Britannica and other encyclopedias are usually not allowed as sources of research in high schools or colleges either. But they do offer a sort of "jumping off point" into researching topics.

A Simple Sinner said...

All this stemming from an anecdote about how Father's cell phone was ruined...

Frank said...

No, all this stemming from Father listening to Fox News (or Faux News as many call it) - which may seem like a trivial issue, but not when you put it in context of his other views on things (according to his blog) and his tendency to politicize the Catholic Church. Why do I care? Because I have a Godson, a Goddaughter, and a neice who are members of his parish. I want them and him to know that there are many of us in the Church that will not put up with extreme right-wing rhetoric, those of us who believe that the spirit of Jesus, and thus of Christianity exists in humility, social justice, prayerfullness, and giving to those who are less fortunate than us - in essence living up to the beatitiudes and the words of Christ himself - not in being judgemental, intolerant, and worshipful of the hierarchy. I just don't want what's happened with the Southern Baptist Church to happen to ours - that we be inundated with fundamentalism, see a bulk of our money go to "administration", and used as pawns in the extreme right-wing political machine. I don't mean any disrespect to Father Dana, and I respect him as a priest, but I will do my best to sort of keep him in check. After all, WE ALL ARE THE CHURCH. Is it a democracy? No, but it doesn't have to be a dictatorship either. Am I ranting? Yes, but I do so with a smile. I am optimistic that if those like me who were once too shy to speak up will voice our opinions as long as God allows it. So Father, I welcome your opinion, and since this is a public blog, I appreciate you and your readers allowing me to voice mine as well. Thank you. :)

Anne said...

Frank, if I understand you correctly you're assuming one cannot be interested in "politics" and be a good priest and/or Catholic. I don't think Father's listening to Fox News, ABC News, NBC News or any other news organization means he's not humble, prayerful, generous to the poor, etc. As Catholics we are called to be involved in our society, not bystanders. I think it's stupid (for lack of a better word right now) to expect our priests to withdraw from being active and engaged in the world. I find a holy priest's commentaries on social issues necessary, important and valued because of their perspective. We need more priests like Fr. Dana.

Frank said...

"I find a holy priest's commentaries on social issues necessary, important and valued because of their perspective." - I completely agree with you Anne, and I neither expect priests to to be disinterested in politics nor witdraw from being active in the world - I like the fact that Father Dana is not afraid to state his position on different issues. But there should be some separation of Church and State, and when religious get into the business of advocating for one political party over the other, they are treading into dangerous waters as they have an increased amount of influence over many people - like the ones I mentioned above. Not saying that he does advocate, but judging by his past blogs and/or activities, he is very right-wing, certainly against the Democratic Party, and unabashedly so. Again, I am not saying this means he is bad or uncharitable, etc. - I hold many conservative values myself, like being pro-life. I only feel that there seems to be an inordinate number of ultra-conservative religious in recent years, and I think this needs to be tempered with those of us more to the center-left being able to voice our opinions too. So thank you Anne for your opinion, and thank you for not being a bystander. Sorry if I got a little carried away in the previous entry, but I am passionate about this issue and feel that open dialog is a good thing.

Anne said...

Thanks for your response, Frank. I'm curious, however, about your comment "number of ultra-conservative religious". It seems to me that Fr. Dana - you seem to put him into this category (and excuse me Fr. for talking about you like you're not here ;)- is not doing anything he ought to not be doing. While I'm sure you're not suggesting these "ultra-conservative religious" have actually come out and said "don't vote for democrats", I think the it's important to understand what some are saying...that is, abortion is the most supreme wrong, if you will, in our country and that must be our first priority when it comes to whom we elect into office.

Frank said...

They've got you right where they want you, anne. Since roe v. wade, we've had more Republican governers, more Republican presidential-years, more Supreme Court Judges nominated by Republicans, and over 12 years in Congress and 17 in the Senate with Republican majorities (and for the record, I've voted for many of these Republicans, including Bush Jr). So where are we with overturning that abortion decision after 34 years? And what about the other pro-life issues: the death penalty, health care, the environment, unjust war, where do these fall on your list of supreme wrongs, anne? When you recommend sites on your blogroll that call the Democratic party evil, Fr. Dana, and when priests deny Democrats communion while allowing it to Republicans who are in favor of the death penalty, in favor of pre-emptive war, and opposed to providing children with health care, then yes, you are in essence telling people "don't vote for democrats".

Anne said...

Frank, the fact that roe v. wade hasn't been overturned yet does not dissuade me from the fight. Abortion, as you seem to be aware, is the taking of an innocent human life. There is no issue equal in gravity. I believe the death penalty is wrong and not needed in this country. You have many concerns with the state of our society and I agree, there are many problems. I am also well aware that voting for someone with an "R" after their name does not necessarily mean they're pro-life. Not by a long shot. And regarding who the Church is giving communion to, I wish it was more readily addressed.

Frank said...

Not really sure what you meant by the last sentence, Anne, but I completely agree with everything else you wrote. Just keep in mind that voting the right way on abortion does not make up for voting the wrong way on nearly everything else. That's all I'm trying to say. Glad your motives are good, just please realize that mine are too.
God bless.

Anonymous said...

Well, it's been a while, but I agree on the wise man versus the wise-ass comment. Just the same, it seems to me that Frank is painting in pretty broad strokes. This is not to say that one or another of the ideas is blatantly false, but it is to say that there is a very big jump from Fox News to Catholic orthodoxy and orthopraxis, especially given that Fox News is, like all major syndicated news, generally not supportive of Catholic views. As for his family and friends in Father's parish, could he perhaps point to something Father has said or done that seems to deny his point about the need for "social justice, prayerfullness, and giving to those who are less fortunate than us - in essence living up to the beatitiudes and the words of Christ himself - not in being judgemental, intolerant, and worshipful of the hierarchy"? There simply seems to me to be a disconnect between what seems to be Frank's gut reply and whatever it is that he is rather obscurely pointing to on Fr. Dana's part.

not god said...

wow now I am lost for words i grew up with Dana, and all i can say is can't we all just get along, god bless you all, a friend of all of you

Anonymous said...

The traditional view is that the Church and State are not separate. How can the divine institution established by Christ be separate from the institutions established by man to lead man?

Anonymous said...

To the person asking to me to point to something Father has said or done... I'm not saying he is contrary to the beatitudes, etc. I ask you, though, to simply browse through his past postings and ask yourself what things he seems FOCUSED on. And then, browse through the blogs he recommends and see what they seem focused on. Most are very very anti- anything remotely progressive, and I find some downright mean and hateful (e.g. KC Catholic).

Anonymous said...

Once again, it still seems like your are painting in broad strokes. I just looked through the KC Catholic website, looked all the way down to the bottom of the first page, and everything seemed pretty kosher.

As for progressive, what do you mean by that? Is that a shrouded term for things like Catholic social teaching or just war doctrine, or is it something that's actually anti-Catholic, like women's ordination or a limited view of the Church that cannot allow for things both old and new?

It still seems like you're just blowing smoke. Your accusations without examples seem to make your statements merely ad hominem. In short, it's pretty hard to see if you are just upset about personal preference, (i.e., a more traditional, yet still very Catholic viewpoint) or about actual substantive points of divergence. Of course, this is just how it seems to me. Perhaps others who have followed this brief discussion think I am out of line. If so, please let me know.

Anonymous said...

I must be bad at trying to state my opinion. I don't want people to think I am totally against Fr. Dana - I think he has a good heart and has written a lot of good sermons. I simply question what influences his politics. Maybe I jumped too far in associating him with his recommended blogs, but I simply do not find some of them "kosher". Some of these have called Sister Joan Chittister "Twisted", have routinely bashed Bishop Gumbleton, have called the Democratic party "evil", have called homosexuals "perverts", and have told those that disagree with them to "get a life" and worse. I guess I am just tired of those of us on the progressive side of things (though still anti-abortion) being demonized and I got a little defensive. I am sorry for that - I got a little carried away in this discussion, and the Fox News just set me off, though again my frustration was largely based on the recommended blogs. So yes, you are right, I guess it is more about personal preference. But is a progressive Catholic any less than a traditional Catholic per se? Is it really anti-Catholic to even DISCUSS women ordination or other issues? Indeed, why can't we allow for things both old and new? I've embarrassed myself enough for now so I will leave it at that, and again sorry if I've offended...

Anonymous said...

Well, I suppose it depends on one's understanding of what is Catholic and what is not. Certainly the Church is very large, and she encompasses many opinions and many truths. Some things are already decided and not up for discussion, such as the Immaculate Conception or the inability of the Church to ordain women. (This last issue, though settled in practice from the early Church, was definitively reaffirmed, i.e., infallibly, by Pope John Paul II in his document Ordinatio sacerdotalis.) As for Sr. Chittister and Bishop Gumbleton, it is true that very often a lack of basic Christian repsect is shown to them. That being said, they both espouse beliefs that are add odds with Crurch tradition. "Ever ancient, ever new" is fine, but the ancient never passes away. The new applies the ancient; it doesn't choose which parts of it to maintain and which parts of it to cast aside. The simple fact of the matter is that Bishop Gumbleton has gone against the consistent teaching of the Church, particularly in the area of sexuality. As for Sr. Joan, she has blatantly denied the Church's teaching authority on a wide number of issues. It is a wonder that she is still even allowed to be called "Sister." Also, as regards homosexuality, there is a great deal of misunderstanding and emotion on both sides of the aisle, and it is very rarely discussed with any decency. Of course, if we read what the Church has to say, we will find a very reasoned and poignant explanation of the question. Finally, the reason why the word "progressive" causes stomachs so often to turn is because it is so often associated with that group of Catholics that wishes to change basic tenets of the faith handed down by the apostles. "Progressive" is so far afield that it may as well be another word for "non-Catholic." This is certainly a globablized statement, but quite a bit is in a name. If people once again formed the "Know-Nothing" party, Catholics would be upset, no matter how many times such a group denied past anti-Catholic sentiments. A good deal is in a name, and "progressive" is a very caustic term.

As for Fr. Dana, thanks for making the distinction.

A final comment-- being anti-abortion is not the only Catholic litmus test. Abortion is not the only instrinsic evil. It seems that your comment above may think otherwise.