Being Quiverfull

[a short story by Joel Nickel]

People scurried around her in the shadows of the television set. Rupert Jones was sitting at his desk in front of the backdrop, taking a sip from his On Winnipeg with Rupert Jones coffee cup. He was speaking quietly to the panel of three women sitting opposite him. Their mics weren’t on and Phoenix couldn’t make out what they were saying.

She was on right after the next segment.

A woman came by and made some last minute touch ups to her make-up job.

“I should put a little bit more here to hide the bags under your eyes.”

Oh thanks.

The make-up woman finished up and then retreated back into the chaoic set.

Rupert Jones turned to face the camera, “I wish we had more time, but we’ve got to go to a commercial break. I’d like to thank Sandra Jensen, Kate Smith, and Janet Morris for joining me tonight. You can pick up Janet’s book Being Quiverfull and Kate Smith’s God’s Mighty Warriors, which are available online and in bookstores now. And catch Sandra Jensen, Wednesday nights at 7pm on TLC for the new reality show, Quiverfull. Next my guest, soap star Phoenix Eversong, talks to me about her return to the Winnipeg filmed, daytime soap, Alls Faire, and what brought her back to reprise the role of her award winning character, after this.”

“And we’re clear,” The man by the main camera yelled, “Back in 5.”

The make-up woman came around again, “Okay, we’re gonna set you up in that chair over there just as soon as the Quiverfull ladies get un-mic’d and then we’ll plop you up there,” She swatted Phoenix’s face with a soft brush.

She saw the three ladies stand up and walk off the set to the green room.

The stage manager motioned for Phoenix to come up on stage and sit down to be wired up for a mic.

“How are you doing tonight?” Rupert asked her and she turned to see the man she’d watched so many nights on television, sitting right in front of her.

“A little jetlagged,” she said. “And I have to fly back to Winnipeg as soon as I get outta here.”

Rupert didn’t laugh.

“We’re live in 5 . . . 4 . . .”

The music bed rolled and the cameras moved in closer.

“Welcome back, I’m here with actress and soap star Phoenix Eversong, best known for her role as Elizabeth Alls on the Winnipeg filmed, daytime drama Alls Faire.”

Inside, Phoenix was rolling her eyes. Best known for . . .

“I understand you had been killed off on the show earlier last year, why did you decide to leave Alls Faire and what was it that brought you back?” Rupert looked over at her with shrugged shoulders, his arms on the table.

Lie or tell the truth? No one wanted me as Phoenix Eversong. All my offered roles were just Elizabeth Alls clones.

“I . . .”

“Yes.”

“Actually, before we get into those questions,” she thought of something brilliant. “I would be remiss if I didn’t comment on your previous guests.”

“Really?”

“Yah.”

She heard a muffled voice behind the cameras sternly call her name. It was the studio publicist, Maxime. She’d briefed her only moments before on exactly what to say. She would not happy about this diversion.

She ignored the voice.

“I have to say that listening off stage . . . it was kind of frightening.”

“Frightening, really?” Rupert gave his signature eyebrow raise again.

“Phoenix!” This time the voice was a little louder and she was sure that people watching at home would’ve heard it.

      This is perfect. She thought. A scandal, maybe they’ll fire me and I can sue ’em.

“I was thinking that, as it is the Christian right has an inordinately large amount of power in politics today. And if this Quiverfull thing actually takes off we would see an even higher percentage of the population perpetuating archaic ideals which throughout the centuries have proved to be antagonistic towards free thought, to women, and to anyone else who doesn’t fit their esoteric mold.”

“You’re saying Christianity is a bad thing.”

“Not at all, Rupert. I’m saying that following biblical Christianity too literally is a bad thing,” Phoenix shifted in her chair and brought her elbows down on the table to look more relaxed. “Listen, the basic views of Jesus are ones that I wholly agree we should all adhere to or at least aspire to. But somehow in translation it gets wonky. ‘Treat others as you would have them treat you’. ‘Love your enemies’. But where are those teachings when it comes to passing legislation banning homosexuals the opportunity to live in loving, committed, legal relationships?” Phoenix asked.

Rupert just nodded, knowingly.

“I also believe that a religious mindset only escalates this ideological conflict between us and them. Listen, I’m the first to admit that I don’t really know a whole lot about the wars; but from the way it’s being presented to me in the media and through conversations with people I meet, it seems to me as though it’s being promoted as a war between Christianity and Islam rather than a war between America and Afghanistan or America and Iraq.”

“Phoenix.” The voice was louder.

“So if it were up to you, would let religion continue?” Rupert asked.

“Of course, Rupert,” she smirked. “I’m not saying that we should abolish religion. Religion has a huge place in history and in art and in personal development. But I think that when we start drafting legislation based on religious views, it can be very harmful to the general population. Think about the witch trials!”

“You’re equating the Quiverfull movement with witch burnings?”

“PHOENIX!”

“Well, of course not directly. But I don’t think you can argue against the fact that it was Christians that went seeking out freethinking, outspoken women and executing them as witches. When any group of people is allowed to exercise extreme prejudice on another group of people, unchallenged, it’s never good. That’s all I’m saying.”

“That’s a little alarmist don’t you think. You’re making it sound like having a majority of Christians in power will somehow bring about an apocalypse.”

“Well, of course Christians wouldn’t think that because they’d be the ones in power; but what about people of other religions, and for that matter what about homosexuals? What about women?”

“I really don’t think that Christians are against women,” Rupert said.

“The woman in your last segment said it herself that it’s a Patriarchal system. And maybe right now there’s the illusion of equality, but if you’re saying that it’s a Patriarchal system there’s the idea that the male is somehow superior to the woman and they must be subservient towards the male gender. When more and more people subscribe to that ideology, that illusion will wear away and we’ll be left reverting back to the 50s.”

“I think that might be a little over exaggerated, but I’ve got to go for a break. Ms. Eversong, it was interesting to say the least, to have you on the show. Not at all what I thought we’d talk about,” he smiled. “You can catch Ms. Phoenix Eversong on the daytime drama Alls’ Faire, everyday at 2pm.”

*                 *                 *

“What the fuck were you thinking?” Maxime, the publicist, exploded into Phoenix’s changing room.

“What?”

“What?” The woman’s voice grew shrill. “What?”

“Calm down,” Phoenix tried to hide a smile, “It’s not that bad.”

“Not that bad?” She shouted. “Not that bad? Do you even know who your fucking target audience is?”

Phoenix rolled her eyes.

“Christian, stay-at-home wives,” Maxime shook her head, disbelievingly, “Fuck, I’m going to be fired.”

“You’re not going to be fired,” Phoenix said, reapplying her lipstick in front of the mirror.

“Yes I am. You were supposed to talk about your return to the show. About how happy you were to rejoin the cast and . . . Jesus, we’re fucked.”

“Calm down. We’re not fucked. Do you realize how much media attention this is going to win us?”

“What? Are you crazy? No one cares about some stupid fucking soap actress except for the stupid fucking Christian, stay-at-home wives who watch her everyday at 2pm.”

“Hey,” Phoenix shot him an angry glare.

“Am I fucking lying?” she scoffed and began pacing, angrily, back and forth, “This is bad! This is really bad. I have to call the network.”

The woman took out her phone and began dialing. She realized that there was no reception in the room and abruptly left.

Phoenix sighed.

      Fucking finally.

I hope I am fired from that shitty soap. Maxime was right. No one cares about me as an actress except for stay-at-home wives. But hopefully now I might find a larger appreciation for Phoenix Eversong the person and not, Phoenix Eversong the actress who plays Elizabeth Alls.

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This Guy Is Going To Be PISSED On Sunday: New York Man Spends Life Savings Ahead of May 21 Doomsday

Via Fox News

A New York man spent his entire $140,000 life savings advertising his prediction that the world will end May 21, the New York Post reported Friday.

Robert Fitzpatrick, a 60-year-old Staten Island resident, said he spent at least that sum on 1,000 subway-car placards and ads on bus kiosks and subway cars.

They say, “Global Earthquake: The Greatest Ever! Judgment Day May 21, 2011.”

In a self-published book, “The Doomsday Code,” Fitzpatrick said the Bible offers “proof that cannot be dismissed.”

“Judgment Day will surprise people. We will not be ready for it,” Fitzpatrick said in an interview with the newspaper. “A giant earthquake will render the earth uninhabitable.”

If you want to set an alarm clock, the quake will happen just before 6:00pm local time, he said.

“God’s people will be resurrected. It is also the day that God stops saving anyone,” he said.

Fitzpatrick hopes that he is one of the chosen ones, but he could not be really certain…

For more information, see original article.

The Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse – in HD

A wonder discussion between Sam Harris, Christopher Hitchens, Daniel Dennett, and Richard Dawkins.  Eloquent, astute, and poignant; this is a wonderful introduction to the four Philosophers’ ideas.

All four authors have recently received a large amount of media attention for their writings against religion – some positive, and some negative. In this conversation the group trades stories of the public’s reaction to their recent books, their unexpected successes, criticisms and common misrepresentations. They discuss the tough questions about religion that face the world today, and propose new strategies for going forward.

This video is provided free online by The Richard Dawkins Foundation for Reason and Science (RDFRS) and http://RichardDawkins.net . If you would like to support our work and help us provide more videos like this, please purchase the DVD through our online storehttp://richarddawkins.net/store/index.php?main_page=product_info&cPath=3&… and/or consider donating to RDFRS:http://richarddawkinsfoundation.org/foundation,donations

Check out more videos at http://richarddawkins.net

Books by these authors:
“The God Delusion” by Richard Dawkins
“The End of Faith” by Sam Harris
“Letter to a Christian Nation” by Sam Harris
“God is Not Great” by Christopher Hitchens
“Breaking the Spell: Religion as a Natural Phenomenon” by Daniel Dennett

Filmed and Edited by Josh Timonen

Bill Nye Boo’d In Texas For Saying The Moon Reflects The Sun’s Light

Via Think Atheist

Bill Nye, the harmless children’s edu-tainer known as “The Science Guy,” managed to offend a select group of adults in Waco, Texas at a presentation, when he suggested that the moon does not emit light, but instead reflects the light of the sun.

As even most elementary-school graduates know, the moon reflects the light of the sun but produces no light of its own.

But don’t tell that to the good people of Waco, who were “visibly angered by what some perceived as irreverence,” according to the Waco Tribune.

Nye was in town to participate in McLennan Community College’s Distinguished Lecture Series. He gave two lectures on such unfunny and adult topics as global warming, Mars exploration, and energy consumption.

But nothing got people as riled as when he brought up Genesis 1:16, which reads: “God made two great lights — the greater light to govern the day and the lesser light to govern the night. He also made the stars.”

The lesser light, he pointed out, is not a light at all, but only a reflector.

At this point, several people in the audience stormed out in fury. One woman yelled “We believe in God!” and left with three children, thus ensuring that people across America would read about the incident and conclude that Waco is as nutty as they’d always suspected.

This story originally appeared in the Waco Tribune, but the newspaper has mysteriously pulled its story from the online version, presumably to avoid further embarrassment.

http://www.wacotrib.com/news/content/news/stories/2006/04/06/04062006wacbillnye.html