Ruminations of a Red Dirt Hussy

July 28, 2012

Go ahead. Think. I dare you.

OK. I’ve been laying off. A disservice to my millions of readers, I know. Truthfully, I haven’t felt particularly funny. Just as I do with everything else, I blame this on a lack of fiber. I know I could write even if I didn’t feel funny, but people seem to take issue with that.

I still don’t feel funny, but the ridiculosity (and it is too a word. Didn’t I just use it?) of the world has forced me to the keyboard. And I have to say, I despair of us as a society. But maybe it’s just that fiber deficiency at work. Still, consider the following.

First, we have the war on thinking. I swear to Eric. Or God. Whichever you prefer. And it’s in Texas. Not that there’s anything wrong with that. Oh, who am I kidding?  It’s Texas, people. I might cut them some slack were it not for the onslaught of billboards, brochures, commercials, T-shirts, and panties—I am not kidding, Don’t mess with Texas, right there across the butt—declaring Texas the biggest, the best, the most varied, glorious, paradisiacal state in the whole freaking union. That may or may not be true—as you know, I lean toward the may not–but right now I’m thinking that if it weren’t for poor, wretched, often—or usually—maligned Mississippi, Texas might be at the bottom of the heap, and that’s not just me.

According to Leonard Pitts in an editorial titled “Texas GOP is waging war on thinking,” a part of the platform of the Republican Party of Texas reads as follows: “We oppose the teaching of Higher Order Thinking Skills (HOTS) (values clarification), critical thinking skills and similar programs that are simply a relabeling of Outcome-Based Education (OBE) (mastery learning) which focus on behavior modification and have the purpose of challenging the student’s fixed beliefs and undermining parental authority” (Tulsa World 23 July 2012: A7).

  1. Oh. My. God.
  2. Oh. My. God.

A Texas GOP spokesman explained that “that language was not supposed to be in the platform.” That’s an excuse? Sounds more like an “Oops. Did I say that out loud?” See 1 and 2 above.

Then there’s the Huffington Post. The sacred cow of Internet news hounds has fallen. Hard. You can read this editorial for yourself at Misleading story on the Huffington Post, but here’s a synopsis: An evangelical Christian minister wrote a column sometime back in which he said that in his opinion, the evil that happens in the world happens because most of us don’t have enough fear of hell. On the morning of the shootings in Aurora, Colorado, he reiterated this belief.

Although he made a comment about the alleged gunman, never did he in any way say that the victims in that movie theater brought about the tragedy because they didn’t fear hellfire. You can take his words anyway you want to, believe anything you want to. What The Huffington Post did was run a headline that read “Jerry Newcombe, Evangelical Leader, Says Only Christian Victims of Colorado Shooting Going to Heaven.” The error was pointed out, but as of the writing of this editorial, the Post has refused to correct it.

Now, I assume most of you have a good set of critical thinking skills. You know that reading critically requires one to read not only on the lines (the content) but between and beyond the lines as well. What we don’t do is read on, between, and beyond the lines and then pull some meaningless, pardon me, bullshit, from—well, from whence that comes—and call it truth.

I get as much satisfaction as the next person when somebody goes all Jerry Falwell or Pat Robertson on us and blames all the worlds ills on (pick one) homosexuality, premarital sex, abortion, and/or the Teletubbies. You know why I get satisfaction from it? Because I think (hope) that finally these goobers have said something so magnificently stupid that their veracity will be questioned by those who follow them.

What I don’t like is to see someone’s words taken out of context and twisted into a noose with which to hang that person. I especially don’t like it when the context ignoring noose-maker is a purveyor of “news.”  However loose our definition of “news,” it shouldn’t be synonymous with “lies.”

Think about it. I trust you.



  1. Welcome back. We knew you couldn’t stay away, fiber or not. Oh, where to begin, where to begin. Even when you don’t feel funny, you’re funnier than most, and when you’re exposing serious ignorance, you make more sense than just about anybody. And lest anyone think you’re only out to bring negative attention to Republicans, fundamentalists, or the media, we should remind them that you know from whereof you speak, having previously been one of each of them.

    You’re already aware we can’t expect veracity from any media source, of either bent. They all have an agenda, and it doesn’t seem to include truth. But I think you nailed the core issue in your closing remarks–the rest of us can be trusted to truly think, and when we all start thinking at the same time, there’s going to be hell to pay, and no matter who thinks they’ve got the market cornered on who’ll be paying it, it won’t be us.

    I hope you won’t continue to despair of us as a society, because “change gon’ come,” and when it does, we’re probably gonna be looking to people like you for guidance, knowing in advance that, to you, some things are still important, like: people, acceptance, non-violence, justice, and last-but-not-least, truth. Thinking people choose other thinking people who think about what matters.

    Lastly, Eric is a god, and anybody who doesn’t think so…well, they’re just not thinking.


    Comment by Michelle — July 28, 2012 @ 3:48 pm | Reply

    • Oh, I just love you. Even when I have my head up my own stupid butt you make me sound like I have good sense.


      Comment by vadasmaker — July 28, 2012 @ 5:30 pm | Reply

  2. Thanks be to Eric for his flock is not flocked after all. Some of us can stil think out loud. Huff Post has been huffing paint, I think. I think xians are their own worst enemies. I don’t need anyone to make them look silly.
    I miss reading you, and I miss writing me. Love and hugs, Lottie.


    Comment by ponytail girl — July 30, 2012 @ 1:24 pm | Reply

  3. […] these are the people to whom critical thinking is such a threat. I reckon so. The unknown is always […]


    Pingback by Would you know stupid if it bit you? « Ruminations of a Red Dirt Hussy — August 22, 2012 @ 9:52 pm | Reply

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