Online responses to 'UU World.'
Bloggers joined the debate about security checkpoints at the upcoming General Assembly. (See “Photo IDs Required for Attending GA,” page 52; uuworld.org covered the story December 14, 2007.) “There is something squirrelly about the thought of the religious community that once published The Pentagon Papers subjecting its gathered delegates and Sunday-morning worshippers to search by the Department of Homeland Security,” wrote the Rev. Rosemary Bray McNatt, a UUA trustee, at “Trustee Talk.” (December 16)
Rev. Tony, a Massachusetts minister, sounded the alarm at “Sunflower Chalice”: “There have been worse police states in history than the current situation in America, much worse, but I have absolutely no affection for having to show government ID to attend a religious convention, no matter where it is being held.” (December 14)
But the Rev. Christine Robinson disagreed. “Some people are talking and writing as if it’s the step before concentration camps, worth boycotting, protesting, and losing large amounts of money to stand up for democracy,” she wrote at “iMinister.” “As one who pulls out her ID with every check, every airplane, every credit transaction . . . I just don’t equate ID checks with fascism.” (December 20)
Others pointed out that security checkpoints are not the only factor making General Assembly less accessible than it could be. Chalicechick at “The Chaliceblog” wrote, “Is ‘Enter, rejoice, and come in as long as you have $300 and speak English’ really that much more welcoming than ‘Enter, rejoice, and come in as long as you have $300, speak English, and have government-issued ID’?” (December 15)
At “Transient and Permanent,” Jeff offered a framework for the debate. In “Manufacturing Outrage as Religious Practice,” he concluded: “Some UUs, building on the denomination’s strong history of progressivism, enact their spirituality through periodic outrage as praxis. Other UUs, building on the denomination’s founding principle of reason, enact their spirituality through rhetorically distancing themselves from perceived over-emotionality.” (December 21)
Fred Small’s uuworld.org essay “Psst: The Secret Isn’t Total Bunk” (November 19) provoked UU bloggers who see The Secret as inherently problematic. Earthbound Spirit wrote, “Why on earth should I believe I’m the center of the universe? Why should I support a philosophy that appears to promote greed? (November 20)
Kimberly French’s “Looking Back” article about Universalist circuit rider Quillen Shinn led Lizard Eater at “The Journey” to ask: “Have any modern UUs—minister or lay—gone door to door, inviting people to church? I mean, literally door to door. Going around a neighborhood, introducing yourself and saying, Hey, I just wanted to let you know that we’re in the neighborhood and I wanted to invite you to visit us.” (October 17)
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Shelby Meyerhoff attends First Parish UU of Arlington, Massachusetts.