Saturday, September 10, 2011

By the Numbers

0 -- Number of gay people, Jews, or other non-Christians who will be employed at the newly christened Point of Grace Children's Academy in Waukee, Iowa.  The daycare -- located for years at Point of Grace Church -- used to be known as Happy Time Preschool & Daycare.  New management was hired, Happy Time was officially closed, and Point of Grace Children's Academy was born.  All of Happy Time's employees were told that they no longer had jobs and needed to re-apply for their old jobs.  In order to qualify for their old jobs, they needed to sign off on new "lifestyle agreements":
That lifestyle means regular attendance at a Christian church, no sex outside of marriage, no homosexual conduct, no viewing of pornography, no drug or alcohol use, and no vulgar language, according to the application posted on the church's website.
GOP presidential candidate Michele Bachmann recently spoke to the church and, according to the linked article, listened as the church's pastor, Jeff Mullen, preached against homosexuality as "unnatural" and  "immoral" and then showed off a video promoting ex-gay theology.  Contrary to popular anti-gay marriage theory, the police have not been pounding at Rev. Mullen's door demanding his arrest even though marriage equality is the law here in Iowa.  You heard correctly.  He managed to successfully preach against gay sexuality in a gay marriage state and still maintained his religious liberties.  Plus, his church managed to successfully disrupt the church's daycare and the employment status of at least one lesbian staff member.  Hallelujah.

2 -- Number of letters that led a North Carolina-based comic book store called The Comics Conspiracy to boycott the newly revamped hit comic book, Action Comics.  This comic featured Superman utterly "GD" while getting exploded upon.  The comic book owner felt that Superman's statement was a curse towards God and offended his Christian faith.  Action Comics writer Grant Morrison noted that The Comics Conspiracy was boycotting his book because of the "GD" word balloon, but continues to sell comic books like Avatar's Crossed, featuring bloody and violent anal rape scenes.  Morrison went on to note that Superman was not cursing God in that offending panel:
It should go without saying that the offending panel and caption, a mere ‘GD’, is a sound effect grunt – to suggest Superman’s breath being forced through gritted teeth – much like ‘DHH’, ‘GNUHH’ or the many others used throughout this book and in general in the comics business. It’s not in any way representative of God or a curse.
Following Morrison's responses to this controversy, The Comics Conspiracy officially lifted its boycott of Action Comics.  Maybe he should ask first and boycott second next time around.

4 -- Number of parts (plus an introduction) to Emergent Christian leader Tony Jones secular versus religious marriages.  I don't agree with the concept of getting government out of marriage, but it's an interesting read.

18 -- Age of the student who was forced by administrators at The Master's School, a K-12 Christian school in West Simsbury, CT, to withdraw from her senior year rather than being expelled.  Her crime?  The school had completed an investigation of several of the female students and discovered that this student is a lesbian. Her former coach responded to the incident with dismay:
"She texted me and said something like 'They kicked me out,' and I made a joke, 'What, are you pregnant?' and she said, 'No, worse. I'm gay,'" said Lodovico. The coach said she immediately got on the phone to see if the decision could be reversed, but no.
99 -- Percentage of counties in the United States of America that officially house same-sex couples.  And those are just the ones who reported themselves to the U.S. Census Bureau.  60% are female and 40% are male and 22% of all reported couples are raising children.

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