Jewish date: 15 Ṭeveth 5770 (Parashath Wayḥi).
Today’s holidays: Gregorian New Year (Roman Catholicism), Feast Day of Pan (Thelema), Feast of St. Basil the Great (Greek Orthodox Christianity).
Worthy cause of the day: “Free passage in Shechem (The Shomron Liaison Office)”.
Topic 1: Updates on current anti-Semitism. First, we have the Dry Bones cartoon “Bombing Argentinian Jews (1994)”. (Check the author’s commentary. What happens in the past doesn’t stay in the past.) I also note a number of articles which deal with misconceptions about the Arab-Israeli War: “Gaza by the Numbers: One Year After Operation Cast Lead” (the numbers support the Israeli side of the story), “A right of return to what?”, “Israel's Right in the 'Disputed' Territories”, and “In defiance of demographic fatalism”.
Topic 2: For today’s religious humor (submitted by Barry): “You can’t say it isn’t true”.
FAIL Blog labels this one an “Inappropriate Innuendo Fail”. This is a real sign that was posted outside of an Anglican church in New Zealand. Thus is it written:
Church vicar Archdeacon Glynn Cardy said the billboard was intended to challenge stereotypes about the way Jesus was conceived and get people talking about the Christmas story.
"This billboard is trying to lampoon and ridicule the very literal idea that God is a male and somehow this male God impregnated Mary," said Cardy, who described his church as having very liberal ideas about Christianity.
"We would question the Virgin Birth in any literal sense. We would question the maleness of God in any literal sense," he said.The idea that God is neuter is, last I heard, standard Christianity; a unique, immortal deity has no need to belong to any sex or engage in genetic recombination. The Gospel accounts of the impregnation of Mary do not mention sexual intercourse, and none would be needed anyway. However, this is still a sensitive topic, and thus this sign was controversial and criticized by some as inappropriate.
Peace and Shabbath shalom.