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The Daily Agenda for Tuesday, August 5

Jim Burroway

August 5th, 2014

TODAY’S AGENDA is brought to you by:

From GPU News, June 1977, page 13.

From GPU News, June 1977, page 13.

You’ll have to click on the image to read the details. It was a short cruise, running from 9:00 p.m. to midnight with music, dancing, and a cash bar. The Quad Cities actually consists of five cities straddling the banks of the Mississippi. Davenport, Iowa, with Rock Island and Moline in Illinois, were the original “Tri Cities” in the early twentieth century. East Moline grew in the 1930s to rival Moline, and the moniker stretched to encompass the Quad Cities. But it would not stretch again, despite an Alcoa plant bringing massive growth to Bettendorf, Iowa, after the war. By then, the area was so well known as the Quad Cities that efforts by the area’s media to popularize “the Quint Cities” failed to take hold.

This ad brought back some really great memories for me. I grew up quite literally on the banks of the Ohio River, which would have been off of our back yard if it weren’t for the levee. When I was in high school, the lone bridge in town that crossed the river to Kentucky was closed for a couple of years’ worth of reconstruction. Ten minute commutes now took more than an hour as the next nearest bridge was nearly 30 miles away. The state of Ohio provided an auto ferry and a stern-wheeler passenger ferry to try to restore at at least a minimum of transportation links to jobs and hospitals. For our Junior/Senior Prom, the high school rented the passenger ferry for the night’s after-party and set up a casino (with monopoly money), and a bar (with fruit drinks and pop — we called soft drinks “pop”). I didn’t go to the prom (go figure!) but I joined my friends at the after-prom for a cruise that left the Court Street Landing at midnight and returned at 5:00 a.m. What a great time we had, “gambling,” “drinking,” and watching the water glint in the moonlight off the ferry’s stern wheel as we churned our way upriver to Greenup Dam before turning back. The bridge repairs were completed a year later and the ferries were gone, and that night, you could see a line of tail lights trailing up the road to Tower Hill in Kentucky, Ohioans rushing to reclaim their favorite “parking” spots.

Smashing the Stained Glass Closet

TODAY IN HISTORY:
Rev. Gene Robinson Elected Episcopal Bishop: 2003. Overcoming eleventh-hour charges that he had sexually harassed a parishioner — charges which were withdrawn with regrets from the person making them — senior bishops at the Episcopal Church’s General Convention voted 62 to 43 with two abstentions to approve Rev. Gene Robinson’s election as bishop of New Hampshire. The election ended months of emotional debate, threats, and bizarre charges. One charge was that a web site run by a youth advocacy group that he supported had links to porn sites. The Boston Globe investigated and found that, yes, it was possible to find explicit photos if you kept clicking from that web site, but it would take seven clicks outside of it through several other web sites to get there.

At issue was the fact that Robinson was not celibate and had been living with his life partner since 1988. During committee hearings leading up to his confirmation, Robinson said that his relationship with his partner was an essential element in his own spiritual life. “‘What I can tell you is that in my relationship with my partner, I am able to express the deep love that’s in my heart,” he explained. ”And in his unfailing and unquestioning love of me, I experience just a little bit of the kind of never-ending, never-failing love that God has for me. So it’s sacramental.”

When Robinson’s election was finally confirmed, about thirty delegates walked out, and opponents called the election “a step toward moral disintegration in America. Anglican leaders in Asia and Africa immediately denounced the decision and threatened schism. He was pointedly not invited to the 2008 LAbemth Conference by Archbishop of Canterbury Rowan Williams, but that didn’t stop a group of conservative bishops to hold an alternate conference in Jerusalem. Robinson formally retired in 2013.

If you know of something that belongs on the agenda, please send it here. PLEASE, don’t forget to include the basics: who, what, when, where, and URL (if available).

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Bose in St. Peter MN
August 5th, 2014 | LINK

And in May, 2014 Bishop Robinson demonstrated the importance of marriage and the ability to speak gracefully about his pending divorce.

Daily Beast: A Bishop’s Decision to Divorce

Hunter
August 5th, 2014 | LINK

I’ve become more and more aware that those who proclaim most loudly and vehemently about the inherent immorality of same-sex relationships seem to have no real understanding of morality as a concept: it’s about the rules they chose from a list of 3,000 year old tribal taboos for others to follow, with no examination of the realities of those relationships. This is, perhaps, because they are, by dint of their religious upbringing, disinclined to ask questions of authority, and also inclined to deny the humanity of those they disapprove of.

And in the meantime they lie, distort facts, misrepresent others — especially their “enemies” — and in general give no evidence of any sort of moral foundation in their own lives and actions.

FYoung
August 5th, 2014 | LINK

Hunter: “I’ve become more and more aware that those who proclaim most loudly and vehemently about the inherent immorality of same-sex relationships seem to have no real understanding of morality as a concept: it’s about the rules they chose from a list of 3,000 year old tribal taboos for others to follow, with no examination of the realities of those relationships.”

I absolutely agree. I wish the ethical development of atheists, practicing and non-practicing mainstream religious, and evangelicals were studied and compared. I expect religiosity would strongly correlate inversely with ethics.

Eric Payne
August 5th, 2014 | LINK

Ah, Jim… your memories of prom bring back such memories…

Unlike you, I did attend prom. I was almost forced to by a mother who just pushed… and pushed… and pushed. My date was a friend of mine in my class who had wanted to attend with someone else; so two dateless people, we decided to go together (a bizarre side-note: the boy with whom she had wanted to attend was also a guy I was crushing on, hard, though he was straight… a second side-note: a month after our prom, she was the date of a guy who had transferred from our school to another school in our senior year, and he and I had “dated” [tricked] a couple-four times in our junior year.

Anyway, at the after-prom party we attended at another classmate’s house, the booze was flowing and she got wasted. I found her in a bathroom, throwing up, at 3 AM. When she came out of the bathroom — which was part of one of the bedrooms — we sat on the edge of the bed while she started to recover. One thing led to another… and another… and…

I found out how babies are made. I also found out females give crappy, teeth-scraping, head. By the time our son was born, she was married to a local boy, a 4-F kid from school; he legally adopted my son. When “Charlie” was 18, he sought me out. He was getting married, and wanted to know his history. In 2000, his daughter “Rebecca” was born. At some point, “Charlie” enlisted, and was sent to a base in Germany. He was killed in a car crash on the Autobahn in 2003. Out of “Charlie” getting in touch with me, I was put back in touch with his Mom, who’d stayed friends with the guy she wanted to go to prom with and the guy she went to the other prom with, and through her, I’ve established contact with them.

The guy she had wanted to ask her to the prom became career military; when I confessed to having a crush on him, he said: “You should have made a move; back then, I was (having sex) with anyone I could.” The boy with whom I’d tricked now lives on the outskirts of London, is an artists’ representative, a gallery owner, HIV+ and heavily involved in HIV awareness programs in England.

Merv
August 5th, 2014 | LINK

It’s funny that the Episcopal Church is held up as an example of a Christian denomination that is accepting of gay people. Yet, Robinson was approved as bishop only by a vote of 62-43, there was months of acrimony beforehand, dozens of people walked out in protest, he was shunned by the mother church, etc., etc., ad nauseam. I would never want to be a member of an organization that treated me like that.

NancyP
August 5th, 2014 | LINK

Only the Metropolitan Community Churches denomination and The Fellowship-associated churches (not a denomination) are specifically gay-friendly in 100% of the congregations. Even the UCC has significant numbers of outlier congregations that oppose the recommendations of the overall church polity. Yes, ordination of Bishop Robinson was the stated cause for many congregations to break away from the Episcopal Church and for many Anglican Churches (national church bodies affiliated with the worldwide Anglican Communion ) to shun the US Episcopal Church, also affiliated with the AC.

Timothy Kincaid
August 5th, 2014 | LINK

Yes it is true that some portion of the Episcopal Church opposed the ordination of Bishop Robinson. And yes it is true that in the EC, the UCC, and the ELCA there are those congregations that are not fully welcoming.

But, as Dumbledore said, “Really, Hagrid, if you are holding out for universal popularity, I’m afraid you will be in the cabin for a very long time.”

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