If you'd like to see the extremely offensive and blasphemous original image, posted by John Bugay, click here. Don't blame me if you make the mouse-click and view it and don't like what you see. You were forewarned.
How about an apology and a retraction, and explanation, after defending it all day, putting Catholics down en masse, as if it were the strangest thing in the world that we would have the slightest objection, and all your cronies doing the same? . . . show the true fruits of repentance . . . If you had a true change of heart, and now think it was wrong and never should have been done, then by all means let us know. We would respect that.
Nevertheless, this is a big step, and a positive development, even if a reluctant one by John, and I am happy to commend and thank him for it. [second link]
Bugay had even mocked our outrage, saying it was fake: "I am amazed at the feigned outrage in the response to these images, for what is absolutely a minimal amount of photo enhancement . . ." This still remains in the post, right at the top. It's clearly an insult and shot at our honest reactions: hardly a loving attitude. I think he needs to go the whole way: not just the minimal amount to get the heat off of himself. The post continues to mock Catholics all over the place, and Blessed John Henry Cardinal Newman, and Blessed Pope John XXIII as well. I would contend that these things also violate the spirit of the Scripture and Francis Schaeffer quotes that he deemed sufficient to require removal of the Hitler garbage.
Second Note (12-6-11; one addition on 12-7-11): I have been informed that now I am being blasted for keeping the image up. My policy is that I document error and derogatory bigotry, etc. unless there is a full retraction and renunciation: in which case I am happy to remove the documentation. As I explained in my note above, it is not clear to me (at all) that this is an instance of full repentance, because the fruits of that are not apparent.
I think there was probably some change of mind (per Bugay's disclaimer), though, if so, it was nowhere near adequate or sufficient, in accordance with the outrageousness of the act. We can only go by what we see, since we can't read hearts. That is what the "fruits of repentance" is about (Matt 3:8; 7:16-20; 12:33; 21:43; Lk 3:8-9; 6:43-44; 8:14-15; Gal 5:22; Heb 12:11). This is Christianity 0101.
It looks like Bugay simply removed it because he was told to by his pastor and others, not because it was inherently (rather self-evidently) outrageous and uncharitable. He had been vigorously defending it for days. He hasn't renounced anything else about it: all the accusations towards us, including supposed "feigned" outrage, or the mocking of Cardinal Newman or Pope John XXIII, or the prior refusal of charitable donations for his ailing wife, and wholesale mockery and insulting of those who would do so. He continued insulting my readers afterwards; calling us, e.g., "swine" and (again) a "rogue's gallery." He even has made a ridiculous, outlandish argument that he got the idea for the mustache from the shadow in the photo as it is on my blog.
Therefore, since his "removal" is not the same as a complete repentance and change of heart (since it shows no outward proof of those things), I keep it up, so as to document the anti-Catholic mentality. In order to remove the image and all the talk surrounding it, I would have to see a complete renunciation and fruits of a genuine change of heart. I don't see that at all. I see nothing except his doing what his pastor told him to do: the very bare minimum of charity extended towards us. It seems to me like he was "sorry that he got caught," and is covering his rear end: but little more. I made the plea above for him to go the whole way, but it was roundly ignored.
It is self-evidently ludicrous, furthermore, to make out (as another anti-Catholic is currently doing) that we are now mocking St. Therese because we didn't remove the mocking image. This person thinks (in some goofy alt-"logical" schema) that we (whom he calls "vipers") have expressed "bogus outrage" and that "No one who made a stink about it was really offended," and referred to "the entire episode you guys pretended to be upset about" (my italics). At the same time (a mere six sentences later!) he made the following utterly contradictory remark to blog regular Paul Hoffer: "I would agree with you and your friends that the picture was offensive." Which is it? I guess it depends on whether it is an odd-numbered date or not, and on the barometric pressure (between sunrise and noon) and humidity (after midnight, but before the owls come out). But it's high comedy, whatever the view/anti-view/view of this singularly insightful heart- and mind-reading luminary is at any given time.
Unfortunately, targets of relentless bigotry and smear campaigns have to document what happens, lest people refuse to believe that such outrages occur at all (or don't learn from them). Hence, African-Americans have documented the sad history of racist stereotyping. Jews have shown how they were caricatured and mocked in Nazi Germany, to arouse hatred towards them (I've been to museums in the Detroit area that do both things).
Likewise, we Catholics (at least apologists like myself) must demonstrate at times (in the worst cases, at least) how our religion is contemptuously treated. If there were genuine repentance, then sure, I would take it down. I always do that if someone changes their mind. Failing that, there is little choice but to leave it up. Bugay continues to refuse to exhibit the genuine and obvious fruits of repentance: the most elementary exercises of the Christian faith after committing a serious sin.
There is no evidence whatever that Bugay feels any differently about the whole incident than he ever did. Otherwise, he would cease calling us "swine" and so forth. It is all of a piece: how he has behaved and talked. The same attitudes that produced the blasphemous "satire" are still evident. The tree is known by its fruits. If we start seeing radically different fruits from Bugay, then we'll talk seriously about complete removal. Thus far, he has spoken out of both sides of his mouth; at one point making a sweeping "apology," then when asked to clarify exactly what he was apologizing for, stating that he was retracting nothing. On 12-7-11, he reiterated his refusal to acknowledge that he has done anything wrong, in this entire sad sequence of events: "I have not been unkind to anyone through this. My conscience is clear." A person's behavior is interpreted in the context of, and in light of, his or her behavior in the immediate past.
Third "Update" Note (12-6-11): The latest charge coming from the usual suspects is that looking for genuine repentance and its fruits is retrograde "eye for an eye and tooth for a tooth" ethics. I say that it is our opponents who are being proponents of "cheap grace" (many Calvinists have decried this tendency in Protestantism today) and contending (if not by word then by action) that (biblical) repentance need not show any fruits or change of behavior. St. Paul taught quite otherwise:
1 Corinthians 5:4-5 in the name of the Lord Jesus on the man who has done such a thing. When you are assembled, and my spirit is present, with the power of our Lord Jesus,  you are to deliver this man to Satan for the destruction of the flesh, that his spirit may be saved in the day of the Lord Jesus.
After the person repented, then Paul counseled that "you should rather turn to forgive and comfort him, or he may be overwhelmed by excessive sorrow. So I beg you to reaffirm your love for him" (2 Cor 2:7-8). Elsewhere Paul connects outward deeds as the fruit of true repentance: ". . . perform deeds worthy of their repentance" (Acts 26:20). Our Lord Jesus said, "Bear fruit that befits repentance" (Matt 3:8). And again: "repent and do the works you did at first" (Rev 2:5). Bugay has not, sadly, exhibited these fruits. He continues to act as before.]
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[original post follows]
[original post follows]
John Bugay posted this caricature of my blog at Cryablogue, complete with additional middle school toilet humor. It's an instant classic (in terms of documentation of anti-Catholic vitriol, contempt, and bigotry) and apparently considered funny as all get-out in these troglodyte circles. Notice how they leave Protestant C. S. Lewis unscathed (too bad he couldn't be changed into Mao or Stalin, or maybe Jerry Lewis or Jerry Lee Lewis: to follow the juvenile "humor"). Nice touch there . . .
Right-click on the photo and select "View Image" for a larger, full-screen version.
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Bugay has now tried to justify his "satire":
I am amazed at the feigned outrage in the response to these images, for what is absolutely a minimal amount of photo enhancement, certainly in response to some not-so-good-natured ribbing, richly enhanced with exaggerations and enhancements of its own. (11-29-11)
Not only was there nothing excessive or wrong whatsoever in what he did, but he also has to pretend that our responses are "feigned." Then he went on (in my combox) to explain the complex ethical rationale behind his garbage:
. . . be sure you understand the symbolic meaning of the artwork in question. . . . official Rome distances itself from Roman Catholic policy toward the Jews over the centuries. And my point simply is, so long as Roman Catholics make excuses and dismiss official Roman Catholic behavior over the centuries, every single Roman Catholic -- from the least to the greatest -- is tainted by this "excused" and unconfessed official Roman sin. (11-30-11)
Asked why St. Thérèse in particular should be held up for ridicule and ludicrously portrayed as Hitler, Bugay wrote:
Merely that she is tainted by Roman escapism, the same way the rest of you are. (11-30-11)
He later watered this down (slightly):
I am not attributing any guilt to her -- but when the organization is sullied, it reflects badly on all the members. (11-30-11)
And later, in the combox below:
I suggest, in a visual way, that she, as a Roman Catholic, is tainted by (a) Rome's policy toward the Jews in the 19th century, and (b) by Rome's continuing failure to take any official responsibility at all -- shifting the blame to "her children".
I see. So "guilt by association" justifies drawing a Hitler mustache on a godly woman and a saint: implying that she has anything to do with a murderer of millions of people: one of the most wicked men to have ever lived.
I guess, then, that every Protestant today is "tainted" by the "excused" outrages and tortures and many thousands of murders / executions that have occurred under Protestant auspices: especially in England, where the Calvinists and Puritans in John's heritage flourished: producing, for example, The Westminster Confession that he and all Calvinists are so fond of. I have documented these horrors in great detail on my web page: Protestantism: Historic Persecution and Intolerance.
England, under Butcher King Henry VIII, Good Queen Bess and other monarchs was a place where a person could have his heart cut out while alive, his intestines slowly drawn out, other outrages not fit to describe in mixed company, done to him, and then arms and legs and heads cut off, simply for the "treasonous" crime of being a Catholic (remember the final scene in Braveheart?). Most folks familiar with European history know what the English did to the Irish for several centuries (I have Irish blood myself). See the gory details on the page above. Isn't it wonderful to hear both sides of the story for a change?
Bugay is fixated on the scandalous historic treatment of the Jews (which was quite as prevalent in Protestant countries: hence mostly Lutheran Germany hosted the Holocaust). I don't know anyone who would deny it. Yet why is it that he would dwell on sins of many hundreds of years ago, while there was tremendous heroism during the Nazi Holocaust within the last seventy years? It is estimated that Pope Pius XII saved some 800,000 Jews: more than any other organization. I have collected many papers about this:
800,000 Saved by Pius XII's "Silence" (Donald DeMarco)
Hitler's Pope? (Donald Devine)
Blaming the Wartime Pope (Kenneth Woodward)
Nazi Policy and the Catholic Church (Karol Jozef Gajewski)
Pope Pius XII and the Jews (Margherita Marchione)
The Catholic Church and the Nazis (website)Was Christianity Responsible for the Holocaust? (Helen M. Valois)
Was Hitler a Christian? (Answers in Action)
Bugay carps in the revised version of his outrageous post:
But Roman Apologists will make every excuse to maintain Roman infallibility, while excusing 'the Church' for any and every one of its officially egregious behaviors over the centuries. Roman Catholic evasiveness is truly staggering.
Just as he lied about me recently, implying that I had never dealt with Orthodox arguments against the papacy (what a joke!); now he is doing it again (insofar as I am an apologist, and his present target): insinuating that I have never dealt with this. But I have, long since (more than three years ago):
Anti-Semitism in the Church Fathers and Historically Among Catholics: Resources and Recent Catholic "Institutional Repentance"
So much for my own "evasiveness". Does this mean I am spared from having a Hitler mustache now, because I freely admit that Catholics (like every other group of sinful human beings) have sinned terribly in the past?
Bugay also seemed at first to be ridiculously denying that in this "satire" St. Thérèse was supposed to look like Hitler (though it was always possible that he was just playing around, as he is prone to do, and as he now has confirmed):
. . . please note that it is C.S. Lewis, a famous teacher, who is threatening to crack Dave's knuckles with a ruler". Lewis is the one with the open mouth. St. Therese's mouth is obviously closed. You certainly don't know how to interpret satire.
And Paul Hoffer, how dare you accuse me of such a truly blasphemous and abominable behavior as to "draw a Hitler moustache". That's a ridiculous assertion. All that I did was to darken the shadow under her nose -- which naturally exists in the existing photo! (11-30-11)
One "Mr. Fosi" appeared to agree with the denial:
John has denied that charge, so I don't grant that he did draw a Hitler mustache on the pic. (11-30-11)
But Bugay then freely admitted it was supposed to look like Hitler. Brian wrote in the combox below:
It's bad form to draw a Hitler mustache on St. Therese.
Brian, I agree. It's bad form. I am "using an absurd example to communicate something that is absurd".
Later Bugay explained on my blog:
This was obviously a "tongue in cheek" comment: . . . There is a scholastic difference between "drawing" and using the burn tool in photoshop. But you'll just trumpet it, to be able to trumpet something. Doesn't matter if you're accurate about it.And later at Cryablogue:
It was an attempt at humor in the midst of this discussion, an attempt to trade on the amphiboly between "drawing a moustache" and "darkening a shadow" which naturally exists using a photoshop tool. (11-30-11)
And again in my combox below:
It wasn't a "denial that it was a Hitler mustache" It was a denial of the method -- which I thought to be a trade on words which I thought could possibly lighten the mood. It was a trade on the methods "drawing" vs "using a photoshop tool".
Yes, the intention in both cases was to put a Hitler mustache there. No, I do not think anyone is a moron. Yes, it is in bad taste. No it is not blasphemy. Yes, the bad taste was intended to illustrate bad taste in other contexts, specifically those perpetrated here and in official Rome.
But despite all, Mr. Fosi was still giving the line that John had no intention to make it look like Hitler (replying to Paul):
You are still saying there is one. It looks pretty similar to the way it looks on Dave's blog header. It may be sketchy but I'm going with John's denial on this one.
Fellow anti-Catholic Mr. Fosi thought it was a denial (since he reiterated this twice); yet if we do the same thing, we don't care about truth or accuracy. Fosi can make the mistake and that's fine, because he's an anti-Catholic. But if we do (and who knows when Bugay is serious or not? His so-called "serious" work is as ridiculous as his farce), we are morons. In any event, if we take John at his present word that it is what we all thought it was (a Hitler mustache), then above he is joking around about his blasphemy, thinking it is the most lighthearted thing in the world (and Fosi was quite serious and misinterpreted what Bugay says was "obvious"). It's yet another instance of Bugay calling good evil. This is becoming a big theme with him.
Paul Hoffer has described the defamation as "blasphemous." Steve Hays (webmaster of the site where this appeared) objected, stating:
His satire would only be blasphemous if it were directed at God (specifically, the one true God). It isn't possible to blaspheme mere men and women. Your complaint reflects Catholic idolatry. (11-30-11)
In stating this, he exhibits his massive ignorance of how the Greek words blaspheemeo [βλασφημέω](Strong's word #987), blaspheemia [βλασφημία] (#988), and blaspheemos [βλάσφημος] (#989) are used in Holy Scripture. They are often applied to men or angels. Hence Kittel's Theological Dictionary of the New Testament (one-volume) states (p. 107):
It may be directly against God . . . or angelic beings (Jude 8-10; 2 Pet. 2:10-12). . . .
Persecuting Christians is also blasphemy (1 Tim. 1:13). The community has to suffer blasphemy (Rev. 2:9; 1 Cor. 4:13; 1 Pet. 4:4). Opposition to Paul's message is necessarily blasphemy (Acts 13:45 [+ 18:6]) because it attacks its basic content.
. . . A bad action is blasphemy either because it resists God's will or beings Christianity into disrepute (1 Tim. 6:1; Jms. 2:7; Rom. 2:24; Tit. 2:5).
Kittel's Theological Dictionary of the New Testament (ten-volume set) elaborates:
3. But the Christian, too, is in danger of giving cause for blasphemy. Denial of Christ in persecution would be such. Hence Paul can say of his activity as a persecutor: αὐτοὺς ἠνάγκαζον βλασφημεῖν. Even in partaking of idol meats Christians in bondage could see blasphemy (1 C. 10:30), as distinct from Paul. Violation of the obligation of love even in such matters ὑμε͂ν τὸ ἀγαθόν (R. 14:16) could expose to scandal. False teaching is blasphemy when it perverts from the way of truth (2 Pt. 2:2; R. 3:8). The blasphemy does not have to find verbal expression. Any bad or unloving action can contain it, either because it resists the holy will of God or because it causes the enemies of Christianity to calumniate it (1 Tm. 6:1; Jm. 2:7; R. 2:24; Tt. 2:5). The basis is clearly set out in 2 Cl., 13, 2–4.
(Vol. 1: 1964- (G. Kittel, G. W. Bromiley and G. Friedrich, Ed.) (electronic ed.) (624). Grand Rapids, MI: Eerdmans)
Likewise, The New Bible Dictionary (1962, "Blasphemy", p. 159):
God is blasphemed also in His representatives. So the word is used of Moses (Acts 6:11); Paul (Rom. 3:8; 1 Cor. 4:12; 10:30) . . . because these representatives embody the truth of God Himself (and our Lord in a unique way) an insulting word spoken against them and their teaching is really directed against the God in whose name they speak (so Mt. 10:10; Lk. 10:16). . . .
The term is also used, in a weaker sense, of slanderous language addressed to men (e.g. Mk. 3:28; 7:22; Eph. 4:31; Col. 3:8; Tit. 3:2). Here the best translation is 'slander, abuse'.
Even immaterial things can be blasphemed, such as the "word of God" (Titus 2:5: "discredited" in RSV), "good" [acts] (Rom 14:16), "teaching" or "doctrine" (1 Tim 6:1), "the way of truth" (2 Pet 2:2), "matters of which they are ignorant" (2 Pet 2:12). Follow the Strong's word links for comprehensive documentation of usage.
Zondervan Dictionary of Bible Themes (#5800: "Blasphemy") also shows a wide application of blasphemy in the Bible:
God blasphemed indirectly
Rejecting his word and his servants blasphemes God Ne 9:26 See also 2Ch 36:16; Ps 107:11; Isa 5:24
Defiling sacred things blasphemes God Lev 22:1-2 See also Eze 20:27-28; 22:26; Mal 1:6-13
Despising the poor blasphemes God Pr 14:31 See also Am 2:7; Jas 2:5-7
Speaking against his people blasphemes God Zep 2:8-11; Ac 9:4-5 To persecute the church is to persecute Jesus Christ; Ac 26:9; 1Ti 1:13; Rev 2:9
Slandering celestial beings blasphemes God 2Pe 2:10-12; Jude 8-10
(M. H. Manser, Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan Publishing House, 1999)
All of this, but Hays, Bugay, and our esteemed anti-Catholic Calvinist brethren are supposedly the masters of the Bible, and we Catholics, biblical illiterates. Hays doesn't even know the plain definition of a common biblical word. And so he says stupid, ignorant things about it. All we have to do is go to the Bible and Protestant Bible reference sources to refute him beyond all reply. Hays' answer to all this on his blog (the first sentence, within four minutes of my posting it there), was:
Needless to say, Kittel is notorious for its semantic fallacies, so Armstrong illustrates his massive ignorance of basic lexical semantics (e.g. James Barr). Put another way, Armstrong commits the word=concept fallacy. If you want to defend Kittel, that's your funeral. I'll send flowers.
BTW, this highlights one of Armstrong's chronic methodological fallacies. He will prooftext Catholic dogma by copy/pasting the occurrence of the same English word in a concordance.
I'm happy to be in the company of hosts of Bible scholars who continue, amazingly enough, to cite Kittel, despite your searing wisdom, thus showing themselves to be miserable sufferers of (what was it?): "massive ignorance of basic lexical semantics." Right.
Helmut Koester wrote:
. . . the violent attacks of James Barr . . . are not really justifiable; decisive though they may be, his remarks are aimed at a few articles of the [TDNT] that are hardly convincing anyway . . .
(Paul and His World: Interpreting the New Testament in its Context, Fortress Press, 2007, p. 242, footnote 11)
Likewise, E. F. Harrison, editor of Baker's Dictionary of Theology, Wycliffe Bible Commentary, and many exegetical books of his own, and founding faculty member of Fuller Theological Seminary:
Almost universally, the value of this work has been cordially recognized. To be sure, it has had its critics, notably James Barr, who finds too much dependence on etymology, some unwarranted intermingling of philosophical-theological judgments with those which are linguistic, too much emphasis on words in isolation rather than consideration of the demands of context, as well as too great a readiness to move from word to concept and to put Hebrew and Greek concepts in contrast to one another. These and other objections point out dangers for those who work in the biblical languages as the basis for exegesis and biblical theology, but it is doubtful that Barr's strictures can be said to invalidate the Kittel method or render nugatory the solid results achieved by its use.
(Introduction to the New Testament, Grand Rapids, MI: Eerdmans, 1971, p. 57)
The very distinguished evangelical Bible scholar Marvin R. Wilson shows himself also to be guilty of "massive ignorance of basic lexical semantics" -- since he (oddly enough, given Hays' infallible pronouncements) offers a third critique of Barr's criticism of Kittel (after praising several aspects of it):
. . . Barr's position fails to be fully convincing. By downplaying any distinction between Greek and Hebrew manners of thinking, Barr does not take into adequate consideration such nonverbal aspects as the historical, cultural, and social-psychological setting from which the respective thought derives. Furthermore, he gives the impression that one may translate from one language to another without any major loss. This is not necessarily the case, however, for words may have a particular cultural and historical development within their own language.
(Our Father Abraham: Jewish Roots of the Christian Faith, Grand Rapids, MI: Eerdmans, 1989, p. 7)
Frederick W. Danker notes other relevant scholarly considerations:
Editor Friedrich accepted the rebuke [from Barr] and vols. 5 (1954) through 10 (1978) reflect more acquaintance with philological realities. David Hill heeded some of Barr's admonition but tilted in the direction of TWNT in Greek Words with Hebrew Meanings: Studies in the Semantics of Soteriological Terms (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1967).
(Multipurpose Tools for Bible Study, Fortress Press, revised edition of 2003, p. 121)
Darrell L. Bock and Buist M. Fanning state that Kittel, notwithstanding Barr's criticisms,:
. . . remains a gold mine of primary source information and should not be ignored.
(Interpreting the New Testament Text: Introduction to the Art and Science of Exegesis (Crossway, 2006, p. 158)
Noted theologian Thomas F. Torrance defended Kittel's methodology and was a critic of these sorts of criticisms from Barr:
. . . Torrance regarded Barr's thinking as a kind of "linguistic formalism" or nominalism that equates reality with linguistic usage . . . Torrance himself characterized James Barr's position . . . as an "outstanding example of . . . nominalist scepticism." . . . Torrance insists, against Barr, that we must not neglect "the fundamental principle of hermeneutics advanced by the Greek Fathers that we do not subject realities to the terms referring to them., but subject terms to the realities to which they refer . . ." (Torrance, Royal Priesthood, p. x) . . . He called Barr a "brilliant philologist whose ideas cannot be ignored, although they are often rather exaggerated" (Royal Priesthood, p. x). . . . Torrance asserted that Barr's approach mistakenly "treated language independently as something having significance in itself . . . and not primarily by reference to the realities beyond which they are meant to direct us" (Royal Priesthood, p. x).
(Paul D. Molnar, Thomas F. Torrance: Theologian of the Trinity, Burlington, VT: Ashgate Publishing Co., 2009, p. 333)
It's a nice sophistical (and altogether typical) attempt by Steve to deflect the discussion away from the biblical range of "blasphemy" onto methodological deficiencies (real or imagined) of Kittel. He can't escape his whopper, so he tries to obfuscate and get the spotlight off of his silly error and onto something else. It's classic tactics of sophistry.
If he says that Kittel defined words too rigidly (he certainly didn't here, as my citations show), then Steve simply comes in and says that the three Greek words can never possibly apply to human beings (or angels or things) in any sense of "blasphemy". So he is just as dogmatic, except it is from prior convictions that he brings to the Bible in order to eisegete it and bolster his errors of category and woodenly seeing idolatry under every rock.
True to form, Hays wrote another sophistical, obscurantist post, filled with non sequiturs, and never touching the heart of our dispute: whether blasphemy in Scripture applies to creatures and things, as well as to God. I showed that it clearly did. He can't refute that, so he switches the subject and obfuscates, like all good sophists do. Hays seems to think it is a bombshell to point out what I already did in this paper, above. So he writes:
Poor ol’ Dave needs a crash course on lexical semantics. Let’s give him a few pointers: . . .
3) In Biblical usage, “blasphemy” has a secular meaning, viz. slander, calumny, defamation.
4) In Biblical usage, “blasphemy” also as a religious meaning, viz. impiety, sacrilege.
I guess that's why (many hours ago, in a long day of disputes) I cited (above) the New Bible Dictionary, stating the same thing:
The term is also used, in a weaker sense, of slanderous language addressed to men (e.g. Mk. 3:28; 7:22; Eph. 4:31; Col. 3:8; Tit. 3:2). Here the best translation is 'slander, abuse'.
What he neglects to see, however, is that blasphemy can apply to people and even objects, precisely because of their connection to God, or as His representatives. His extreme anti-Catholic Calvinist either/or mentality won't allow him to see that (he collapses it into inherent idolatry). Earlier today he denied that this was the case. But it's simply not presented that way (according to his opinion) in the Bible. Because I showed him that and he had no ready answer, he started attacking Kittel as a source (attempting to poison the well), and I had to spend time showing how his is not everyone's opinion, by any stretch. I consider what the actual linguists and Bible scholars say about it: not what an unpublished, wannabe-scholar teaching assistant like Hays dogmatically bloviates on and on about.
Bugay summarized on Cryablogue all of this sort of scholarly counter-evidence to Hays' claims:
Rhetoric, Dave. Unlike at your hovel, we have standards here.
Bugay then deleted the lengthy E. F. Harrison citation above, and turned off the comments before I could post the Danker citation. Too much refutation of Hays' inanities, I guess . . . These are the heights and absurdity that these anti-Catholics will scale, in order to avoid admitting that they were dead-wrong about the meaning and range of "blasphemy" in Holy Scripture.
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It occurred to me that there is a huge double standard here in terms of what an anti-Catholic can do to a photo of a Catholic, and what a Catholic can do. Note how there are loud complaints from our anti-Catholic friends now about how our disgust at this juvenile display is altogether excessive, even "feigned" -- according to Bugay. How dare we complain that a saint (indeed one of the holiest of all time) was made to look like Hitler!!! Yet if we look at how anti-Catholics typically respond to any satire or humor, no matter how harmless, they yell and squawk louder than a stuck pig, and for precious little reason. The classic example is James White. I merely stretched a photo of him (in the late 90s), and he nearly imploded with prideful, bombastic-ego pique. Here it is. Note how terribly outrageous and disrespectful this is. Can you think of any possible thing more insulting than this?:
You would have thought the sky was falling down, according to Bishop White. And so he writes:
He has years of history in posting distorted pictures of me, cartoons, . . . In some ways it is simply pitiful, in others shameful. (7-12-07)
I had some harmless fun with other photos: making one look like a negative, another a weird yellow color, some take-offs of his stuff, etc.:
But the anti-Catholic ego can't take any of that. At the same time, White's professional caricaturist has done two satirical drawings of me, complete with many lies (one / two). Eric Svendsen (formerly very active and prominent anti-Catholic online) did a National Enquirer satire of me that had a child growing out of my chest and a supposed connection with Holocaust deniers (scroll down to bottom right). At one time an entire fake blog, supposedly my own, was put up: literally filled with slanders and mockery. That person was an anonymous coward and has never been discovered. White's artist also portrayed Patrick Madrid being stoned for idolatry. Gene Bridges, an associate of Steve Hays, had a field day, seriously comparing me to dictators like Castro and the tyrant in North Korea (complete with photographs).
All of that is fine and dandy, yet I simply stretch out a photo of James White or do other harmless, lighthearted stuff such as seen above, and he hits the roof and acts as if I have lost all credibility as an apologist altogether because I did such dastardly, wicked, utterly indefensible, unconscionable things. He can't take any criticism; he seems to have no comprehension of self-deprecating humor or laughing at oneself.
But if we object to outrageous and hyper-slanderous Hitler comparisons, Bugay condescendingly writes: "I am amazed at the feigned outrage in the response to these images, for what is absolutely a minimal amount of photo enhancement, . . ." and "You all really should be concerned about other things." There is a double standard here as wide as the Grand Canyon.
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