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Medium Dawn Felagund of the Fountain

Unethical Me!

The (Cyber) Bag of Weasels

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"About as much fun as a bag of weasels"...when I first saw this Irish adage, it made me think of the life of a writer: sometimes perilous, sometimes painful, certainly interesting. My paper journal has always been called "The Bag of Weasels." This is the Bag of Weasels' online home.

Unethical Me!

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can of worms
I am doing something wholly unethical for money. And here I am, admitting it.

My boss has a friend--an ex-State trooper--who is taking a statistics class for his MBA. And struggling with it. So my boss got us hooked up--being as I know a thing or two about stats--so that I could help him along. So he came over today and brought a whole stack of work...due Tuesday.

While working on it, it evolved from Dawn tutoring into Dawn doing the problems into "Dawn, will you finish this for me and I'll pay you?"

And I said yes.

Bad 'gund! Bad bad 'gund! *hangs head in shame*

It's tax time, I admit. I could use the money. Bobby and I live a simple life with no children and lots of savings and that means that we owe money, despite the fact that my income puts me just above the poverty line (and Bobby's isn't anything stellar). This country punishes people who want to save by taxing their interest year after year...after taxing the income that put the savings there in the first place. We're saving for a home and a business--two supposed "American dreams"--and apparently that's not as acceptable as squeezing out a few kids and settling into a life of debt.

Anyway.

So the stats stuff is...well, going. It's been literally years since I did any of this stuff. My boss' eyes cross when I mention anything more than an average. (And he doesn't even know that there's more than one kind of average! I tried to explain this once, and his eyes crossed and his head spun....) Never mind the fact that I don't like the program I have to do it in, and one of the exercises apparently has a bug that prevents it from recognizing the correct null and alternate hypotheses even when I put them in correctly, meaning that it's impossible to complete the exercise. Of course, I wasted a half-hour figuring this out.

And while I'm on a roll, I might as well admit as well that I am becoming an intolerant person. My sister posted an LJ entry about the South Dakota abortion ban, and she got me thinking (as she has a tendency to do). I remember past conversations with my sister where we discussed whether we should be ashamed to be Americans and whether the current political climate is fostering intolerance (in us) for Christians. Not just the nutjobs...but all Christians.


I have Christian friends. And I want to maintain that I am not feeling a twinge of intolerance toward Christians....

But there is a deep place where bias rests where I do twinge. Despite the friends; despite the fact that I know it's wrong. But when someone introduces him/herself as a Christian, I feel my guard fly up. I go on the defensive. I expect to be confronted about my beliefs--or lack thereof.

On the other hand, when I learn that someone is an atheist or an agnostic (like me), I feel instantly more comfortable with them. "Okay, you're good peeps." Right? No!!! Of course not! Atheism/agnosticism doesn't make someone "good" anymore than Christianity makes someone pushy and intolerant, and I know this in the part of my mind where logic lives. But in the place of deep-down conditioned bias, I flinch when someone admits, "I'm Christian" or "I'm religious" or starts talking about his/her church. And an evil part of me wants to start talking about gay marriage or abortion or stem cell research, just to provoke the person and prove my own stupid, biased hypothesis.

And this makes me want to throttle the conservative nutjobs all the more because I used to deeply respect faith--even though it is not the spiritual choice that I have made in my own life--and now I find that being replaced by something bitter because of what is happening in South Dakota; because of the snafu where they wanted to protect the "rights" of pharmacists to destroy a woman's birth control prescription; because of the fact that they want their fairy tales and icons in every school, court, and park in the country; because they can't let people like me just be.

Yet I know most Christians are not that way. Most Christians are like me and recognize that their own morality and the law can be--indeed, sometimes, need to be--different. Most Christians celebrate diversity and recognize that people of different beliefs make the world a better and more interesting place.

But still: I twinge.
  • Now, don't burst a blood vessel or anything but...

    I was talking to my friend, who happens to be a Christian, well, psycho. Usually, we're like Angrod & Caranthir - just cannot get along! But last night, he was telling me about some guy who is apparently running for governor (don't know which state) who wants to revise American law so that it is basically the Old Testament - i.e. make abortion and homosexuality a *felony*.

    I told him "That's fucking riduculous." And. He agreed. I almost fell out of my chair. I wanted to hug him. We said the guy should be censored and locked away in an asylum.

    Now, is it sad when the person you thought was the most unreasonable conservative in the world agrees with you on matters regarding homosexuality?
  • "Dawn, will you finish this for me and I'll pay you?"

    One of my sisters used to ask that, when she had an English paper due in high school and I wanted money. And I would have agreed, if I hadn't worried too much if the teacher would notice something about the writing that made it not seem like my sister's. (And if Mom hadn't overheard and said, "NO.")

    But there is a deep place where bias rests where I do twinge. Despite the friends; despite the fact that I know it's wrong. But when someone introduces him/herself as a Christian, I feel my guard fly up. I go on the defensive. I expect to be confronted about my beliefs--or lack thereof.

    Me, too, to my dismay. It's silly, too--I used to be Christian, myself. If I rather casually find out that someone's Christian--you know, they just answer it in a survey that asks them, or list it as an LJ interest, or something, it's no problem, but when someone makes it a point to tell them their religion as soon as they first meet them, the first thing I wonder is, "Uh-oh, am I going to get flamed if I post one of my rants supporting gay marriage or bashing intelligent design now?"

    And a lot of Christians and I have a lot of common ground to enjoy... it's just that they're Christian and I'm not.

    And this makes me want to throttle the conservative nutjobs all the more because I used to deeply respect faith

    Yeah... I guess there are different sorts of faith--there's trust and loyalty, and then there's just unbending, blind confidence in whatever you want to see, and anyone else living any differently suggests that you're wrong, and the way to handle that is to simply get rid of the differences instead of embrace and enjoy them. And certainly, no religion (or group) has a monopoly on any one sort of faith.
  • Oh my. Another post that makes me wonder about America - no offence intended: I love my American friends to bits (you know that) and I want to see your beautiful country again very badly.

    But...

    ...I'm sorry to say that you couldn't pay me to live there!

    *hides*

    I never knew how laid back and relaxed we are about religion and other things until I got into online fandom and into talking with many Americans from all over the US on a regular basis.

    I live in the southernmost state of Germany, the most conservative state of Germany, the most Catholic state of Germany - and I live in the country!

    And... the last time I heard a rant about religion in public was when a very, very old man (over 90) complained about how laws were change to making opening shops easier on Sundays. And all the good Catholics were sitting around, rolling eyes and humouring him...

    I live in a village of 7,500 people, and the region I live in is not exactly know for being open for new things. We have two sects in the village, I think: witnesses of Yehovah and something obscure that I haven't figured out yet. The majority is more or less Catholic, maybe a third is Protestant. There's also a growing circle of people involved in esoterics.

    So what happens?

    When the witnesses of Yehovah tried taking children with them on their missionary circuits, everyone was upset. The children stayed home - no one cared.
    I guess if the topic of the esoterical people was raised among old men sitting together in a pub, they'd say "Those people are crazy!" Then they'd shake their heads and order a new pint.

    Abortion is legal under certain conditions.

    Now and again there's something about it in the newspapers, because the Catholic church *officially* has problems with providing counselling that may lead to an abortion, but there are still Catholic laymen (and -women) doing that. Sometimes a doctor who does large ads for his abortion clinic will be sued (doctors and lawyers may advertise there services only in a very limited way) and he'll have to tone down those ads.

    If someone suggested here that Creationist theories ought to be taught in biology class, not only 98% of the Christians would not know what you are talking about, but they'd think you are nuts.

    We have mandatory religious education or ethics class in our schools.

    I spent the first half of my years at school in the Protestant religious education class, and the other half in ethics. In our religious education class we were taught about the way the Bible was made, about the different historical stages of the Christian legends, histories and beliefs being turned into a book, about the other Christian sources that are not contained in the Bible. We talked about genesis, and how it was the tale that humans explained the origin of the world in earlier times... and that our advancing knowledge about how evolution worked does not exclude believing in God.
    We also covered other religions and philosophy in that class.

    For the most part, I was bored to death in that class.

    Today I think it's a very important subject, because the way it was taught (state-approved and controlled curricula!) certainly contributed to the fact that I know about more than one religion and that I am able to discuss such topics critically.

    I'm writing this down here so you can see that it doesn't *have* to be the way you experience the problem of religion and especially Christianity.

    Take heart.
    • Bayern? I lived there once. That's a pretty part of the country.

      The thing that most non-Americans don't quite take into account about the U.S. is that freedom and democracy here have never been as simple as anyone believes. I think that the U.S. government likes to tell a pretty story about how pioneers came to these shores seeking freedom to live, assemble, and worship as they please, then along came the Constitution, and rational, Enlightenment democracy did reign forevermore throughout the land. It's a lovely story, and it's one that everyone in the world (okay, maybe not Osama bin Laden, but everybody else) wants to believe, so everyone believes it.

      The thing is, it doesn't mention the fact that the early settlers were the conservative religious nutjobs of their day. The reason that Europe doesn't have a whole lot of conservative religious nutjobs today (1933 - 1945 aside) is that they all moved here. Conservative religious nutjobbery is as much a part of Our American Heritage as the Constitution. For the Puritans, freedom to worship meant freedom for the Puritans to worship, not anybody else.

      Of course Americans are crazy about religion when compared to Europe. Most people are surprised to discover that. You just have to find the right kind of Americans. Fortunately, given the vast size of the country and the infinite variety that we come in, there are American communities to suit almost anyone's taste. But they are all located within a country that was originally settled by conservative religious nutjobs who have had three hundred years to stew.
    • (no subject) - dawn_felagund - Expand
  • I am doing something wholly unethical for money.

    Noo... you are performing a service for money. The unethical one is the ass-hole who can't be bothered to learn statistics and would rather pay somebody else to do it for him. Arrg, if I got payed for everything I've done for people who were supposed to know how to perform their tasks better than me, I'd be filthy rich be now. Maybe I should start taxing the bastards, seeing as how all I get is a half-hearted "thank you", and the inner scowling of people who envy me because I know things and they don't. Whoa, I'd better not get all worked up on this.

    I used to like statistics a lot. I still do and it made perfect sense to me, while studying it for two semesters, in Uni. It's beyond me how others cannot understand the concept of more than one average...

    I flinch when someone admits, "I'm Christian" or "I'm religious" or starts talking about his/her church.

    You should not be to vexed by this either. I am much more radical about this. I don't care if a person is religious or not, if we get along and have other things to talk about. But when someone starts ranting about their church and religion, with the outspoken or unspoken desire to convert me, I just say: "Shut up. I do not care about your church. If you want to be my friend, do not give me any of that crap with the intention of converting me. You can speak about it if it makes you feel better and so on, but leave me out of it."

    I hate having to become intolerant and defensive like this, but sometimes, people leave me little choice.
    • Arrg, if I got payed for everything I've done for people who were supposed to know how to perform their tasks better than me, I'd be filthy rich be now.

      Ai, isn't that the truth? It seems to me that the higher a person climbs, the more incompetent s/he becomes. Maybe the air is thinner up there, so high on the political/corporate ladder, that they get lightheaded? ;)

      One of my hopes, as a business owner and boss someday, is to never become that way. My dad--who is a very good manager--taught me when I first started working to never ask someone to do for you what you have not done yourself a hundred times before. I like this philosophy. :)

      The worst was the corporate-types who would come into The Piece brimming with ideas of how to make this and that better...never mind the people who have been working there for five or more years, who know what the hell they're talking about, standing there screaming that it won't work. No, they'd throw money at it...and it wouldn't work. Which I could have told them for my measly hourly rate.

      Okay, I'd better also not get worked up about this. ;)

      I don't think it would be a bad idea to establish yourself as a tutor, for example. Then, if people want help, you can hand them a business card and name your fee. ;)

      I hate having to become intolerant and defensive like this, but sometimes, people leave me little choice.

      That's exactly it. I find myself bristle when someone starts talking about his/her "belief" or how active s/he is in church...even if it doesn't involve me. But I have learned to expect that it will, eventually. People either ask what religion I am or assume that I am Christian, which makes me see pretty shades of red. The Christian friends who say, "Oh, okay, cool," when I say that I'm not Christian are okay by me. :)
  • 1. I think I see it as the guy learning statistics being needy and you fulfilling a need for him. And for yourself too. He is the one who will suffer later because he doesn't know stats and maybe that will be a lesson to him. Don't feel guilty.

    2. You should really check out the stock market, call a broker and try to find some tax shelters for your money. I don't know what there is for Americans in this day and time (it's been quite a few years since I've been out of that business but back in my time I was aware of many existing shelters).

    3. In the matter of the conservative nutjob I would hope that common sense and the sanity of Americans at large will squelch him before he can come to any sort of real power. Unfortunately some Canadians (not me!) elected a conservative nutjob as prime minister just recently, albeit with a minority. Having faith in the Canadian parliamentary system, I rest assured, however, that the saner heads in the opposition parties will keep him in check so that he cannot do any real damage or undo some of the progressive things that the previous party accomplished (such as legalized gay marriage, legalized abortion), and set us all back 50 years.

    3.
    • 1. I'm a realist, and I know that these things happen. Especially in these part-online courses for "working" adults. When he told me the amount of work he had to do this weekend, I couldn't really blame him. I doubt that I could have finished all of that on my own, while working full-time, either.

      Still, in college, I would have been aghast at the idea!

      2. I have a large portion of my savings in a mutual fund, which is good because it can only be taxed if I take money out of it or make changes to it. Which I'm not doing, since it is making me a good deal of money again. (I lost about half of it after 9/11. o.O) We get soaked on our savings accounts/CDs, which we keep around for emergencies. That's annoying because we get taxed on the income, taxed on the interest, and taxed when we spend it. It feels like every time I manage to take a step forward, I get pushed two backward. Grr.

      3. I'm less worried about the leadership of the US than the fact that the nutjob population seems to be getting such a strong hold. They are a minority, but they are dictating things that I never would have thought possible. It still astounds me that--in the midst of a war based on lies and an economic recession--people re-elected Bush because he was opposed to gay marriage. And because he is a "moral man." (Because sending American troops overseas to avenge your daddy is really moral. Sorry, I won't start....)

      Unfortunately, our nutjobs are just as bad--or worse--in Congress. These are the people who managed to call an emergency session of Congress overnight to have one woman's feeding tube reinserted but couldn't get their poop in a group to save thousands of mostly Black, mostly poor New Orleans' citizens during Hurricane Katrina. But of course, Terri Schiavo pleased the religious right, whereas Katrina? Who gives a shit about those coloreds? (I can't bring myself to type the word they probably really used, so we'll leave it at that.)

      4. I like this numbering system. It makes it very easy to reply to comments. ;)
  • On the other hand, when I learn that someone is an atheist or an agnostic (like me), I feel instantly more comfortable with them.

    But in the place of deep-down conditioned bias, I flinch when someone admits, "I'm Christian" or "I'm religious" or starts talking about his/her church.


    Me too. I didn't used to feel this way, but now that it seems ok to be a religious fanatical nutcase in America, that minority has tended to leave a bad taste in my mouth regarding all religion. I know the majority of christians don't want to pull us back into the dark ages, burning books, banning evolution in schools, and prosecuting homosexuals, but the fanatics get a lot of press.

    I'm going to have to learn to be a lot more tolerant though. My hubby just got orders to Louisiana and although I've stopped crying and having heart palpitations, I'm still not very happy about moving there. It's been twenty years since I've lived in the deep south, and I'm hoping things have changed. I remember this one kid on our very first date tried to impress me by telling me his dad was a wizard in the klu klux klan - I couldn't get out of the car fast enough.

    *picturing me looking out the window and seeing a cross burning on my front lawn because I'm an atheistic, pro-choice, darwin-lovin, slashy-Tokien-fanfic-writer, who thinks anyone should have the right to marry regardless of race or same-sex*
    • The deep South? o.O

      One of my jobs as a "research statistician" is to run all of the warrants we get through a database to ascertain whether they have any record of being a member of a security threat group. And I am constantly amazed at the number of matches I get for the KKK, for the White Supremacists, for Aryan Nation, etc.

      And this is Maryland, a liberal state! (Although you wouldn't know it by our Republican governor with his stupid policies and bad hair.)

      I didn't used to feel this way, but now that it seems ok to be a religious fanatical nutcase in America

      Truer words were never spoken. :)

      It still amazes me that--after having the worst terrorist attack occur on his watch, after starting a war based on lies, and after driving the country into a national deficit and recession--Bush was re-elected based on his "morals," because he's a "good Christian man" who opposes gay marriage and abortion and all that other crap that we liberal sinners are trying to force onto America.

      No one sees anything wrong with calling an emergency session of Congress (during which "activist" judges were threatened by our fine national leaders) to "save" Terri Schiavo...no one sees anything wrong with the fact that science classes are being used to teach kids fairy tale "creationism."

      Sorry...I'm ranting to the wrong person, I know! :)
  • Wow! I'm impressed with anyone who can look at statistics and not cry and hide under the table. Every now and again I find myself faced with some, and I procrastinate them for a while, then finally grit my teeth, sit down with SPSS, the internet and every textbook I have and try to make some sense of them - which often takes about 2 hours. You deserve bonuses just for being able to look at that stuff!

    I guess I'm lucky to know a lot of very liberal Christians, which thankfully means I don't tend to worry about their faith unless they make it clear they have some batshit ethics (homophobia, extreme pro-life, creationism, etc.). I've recently had more problem with bonkers atheist acqaintances who refuse to form close friendships with any Christians on principle!
    • Wow! I'm impressed with anyone who can look at statistics and not cry and hide under the table.

      I liked stats in university, but I've always had a knack for math, particularly applicable math. And with my job title--"research statistician"--I should hope that I have a half-clue of what's going on!

      Still, I understand that stats is really hard for most people, and I can see how that could be. I think you're brain has to be set a certain way in your head or something. ;)

      I hope SPSS is easier to use now than when I tried to use it, back in the day. I used to do stats by hand before use SPSS.

      I've recently had more problem with bonkers atheist acqaintances who refuse to form close friendships with any Christians on principle!

      Wow. That's an interesting principle, to be nice about it.

      I know a lot of nice, non-pushy Christians too. But unfortunately their radical peers and the amount of power they have lately makes me (sadly) mistrustful of anyone I don't know well who identifies him/herself as a Christian.
  • I'm not quite sure from your rant whether or not you get twinges against Christians only or against all religious people. If someone were to introduce themselves by saying, "I'm religious," but not identify the religion, would you still get the twinge?

    The South Dakota ruling is an obvious legal test case. I really don't think that it's going to stop abortions in South Dakota. . . until it does, and then that law goes straight to the Supreme Court. And, honestly, I don't know what will happen to it there. I know that the great liberal panic is that the Evil Conservative Supreme Court of the U.S. is just waiting to pounce on Roe vs. Wade and smite it down with a flaming sword, thereby condemning all women to a lifetime of unwanted children and bloody death. But I don't think that will happen, for two reasons.

    1. Roe vs. Wade doesn't do quite what people think it does. It's actually a legally shaky ruling that probably deserves to be struck down as soon as something better can be drafted in its place. Its effect is to make abortion legal in all fifty states, and it does so by invoking a complex network of privacy and interstate commerce rights that really isn't very convincing if you look at it with a legal eye. If RvW were struck down tomorrow, abortion would not be made uniformly illegal. Instead, the issue would be returned to the several states. Each state would then have to decide whether or not to ban abortion.

    Now, the nutjobs would love to see every government do like South Dakota, but most of them won't. This is a ruling that's been in place for thirty years, and it can't be dismantled overnight. First of all, you'd be putting abortionists out of work. They might well mount a legal challege to that. Second, you'd start seeing women crossing state lines to get abortions. The difference between 1973, when RvW was enacted, and now, is the Internet. Women have much more access to instant interstate communication and would probably make up relatively efficient underground railroads to get poor women into states that allow abortion.

    I think you'd end up with a national debate similar to the one surrounding the death penalty, which is legal in some states but not others. And the country would be deeply divided, the way that Texas executes hundreds while Illinois declares a moratorium. And I don't think that this is a situation that the lawmakers of the several states really want to see. Even the more rabid states might pause if the issue were actually handed to them on a plate.

    2. The other current panic is that Bush has appointed two conservatives to the Court, let the killing begin. The thing is, though, that there have been many Supreme Court justices in the past whose views have changed over the time they sat on the bench. A Supreme Court appointment is for life, so Roberts and Alito no longer have to worry about pleasing a superior. They are no longer required to toe the party line in order to get re-elected or re-appointed. They are responsible only for interpreting the law in the company of their fellow justices.

    And their fellow justices are very well-respected jurists. Roberts and Alito probably studied some of their opinions in law school. And, even though Roberts is Chief Justice, he's still the new kid, as is Alito. If these guys have to reconsider RvW, they will probably take a lot of time over it, hearing endless days of testimony and then consulting thoroughly with each other. And the justices do seem to have an influence on each other's decisions. They do have to come to a final panel decision, after all, and I don't think that it's beyond the realm of possibility that the more liberal justices might use their seniority to keep the new kids in line.

    Many people were just incensed over the appointment of Clarence Thomas, for much the same reasons, but he's really faded into the background since. You never can tell what'll come up with a Supreme Court justice once they're firmly seated on the bench.
  • And an evil part of me wants to start talking about gay marriage or abortion or stem cell research, just to provoke the person and prove my own stupid, biased hypothesis.

    Ahhh, sounds familiar. Reminds of those people in inner cities who stand around, distributing pamphlets on how Jesus Christ is our only saviour. Always makes me want to go to them and start off on something controversial.

    I think the problem I have with religion is when people feel the desperate urge to tell everybody just oh-how-religious they are. Eh, so fine but why do they tell me? Why do they have to carry their faith like a picket sign in front of them?

    For example my sister has a friend who's deeply religious but at the same time really sweet, tolerant and open-minded and who does not feel the need at all to express her faith or convert others all the time. And I still do not doubt her about it. On the contrary I doubt those people who have to proclaim their christianity 24/7, because it always seems to me so fake.
    • Reminds of those people in inner cities who stand around, distributing pamphlets on how Jesus Christ is our only saviour. Always makes me want to go to them and start off on something controversial.

      Hehe...we once passed a nutjob in a sandwich board on our way to dinner in historic Ellicott City. My husband wanted to stop and harry him, but Teh Wife was hungry, and he knows the consequences when Teh Wife's blood sugar gets low. We drove by again, but the guy was gone. My husband was disappointed. ;)

      On the contrary I doubt those people who have to proclaim their christianity 24/7, because it always seems to me so fake.

      I've often noticed a disparity between what some people say and what they do.

      They will say that they are a Christian, then turn around and comdemn homosexuals, for example, saying that they're going to Hell, ignoring the fact that the Bible says numerous times that the right to judge belongs only to God and that anyone who believes in God and Jesus will go to Heaven. Anyone can wear a gold cross and WWJD? bracelet; anyone can go to church. I think it takes a special person to act like a Christian.

      My sister and I--both agnostic--agree that the Christian faith seems nice enough, if only its followers would follow Jesus' example instead of using their religion as a chance to condemn everything that is different from them or which they don't understand.

      One of my favorite quotes: If going to church makes you a Christian, does going to the garage make you a car? ;)
    • (no subject) - frenchpony - Expand
    • (no subject) - atanwende - Expand
  • >> But when someone introduces him/herself as a Christian, I feel my guard fly up. I go on the defensive. I expect to be confronted about my beliefs--or lack thereof.<<

    Yeah - even as a christian myself, when people introduce themselves as Christians, I kind of assume that they will be pretty in-my-face about their views... and whether or not I share them. Fortunately that hasn't been my experience too often, but unfortunately the times when it does happen just makes me think it will again.

    >> On the other hand, when I learn that someone is an atheist or an agnostic (like me), I feel instantly more comfortable with them.<<

    I don't think it's that you think they're "good peeps", more that you know you won't have religious beliefs/ religion-based opinions rammed down your throat. Which is a perfectly understandable thing to be glad about IMO... I don't like it when people do it to me, so, yeah.

    >> Most Christians celebrate diversity and recognize that people of different beliefs make the world a better and more interesting place.<<

    We do, I promise :) Most of us aint too bad - but, well, the few bad apples give the whole barrel a bad name. Or at least, that's what I think.

    'pologies if some of this is rambly and not-making-sense...it's pretty late/early (1:15am!!) and I'm exhausted, so i'm kinda typing on auto-pilot, and letting my thoughts say what they like, lol :)

    So, yeah, that's just my 2p thrown in there! And now I'm off to bed (oh, the student life... :S),

    Curuevo...crawling off to bed, where she should've been hours ago...shame, shame on me :)
    • Any Christian who writes slash is okay by me. ;^))

      I'd imagine there's obnoxious atheist/agnostic people out there too who would shove their beliefs on, say, a Christian. You're right, though, that by being "one of them," I don't get subjected to this.

      I don't know about elsewhere in the world, but over here, we have more than our fair share of nutjobs. And they get more than their fair share of press. Unfortunately, it gives tolerant Christians a bad name.

      So, yeah, that's just my 2p thrown in there! And now I'm off to bed (oh, the student life... :S)

      Rest well. :) I remember those days (and not always fondly....)
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