What I Became Because of You

In Star Trek S4E12 (“The Wounded”), the Enterprise crew are forced to cooperate with Cardassian leadership to stop a rogue Federation captain from destroying their fragile peace. The Cardassians’ presence aboard the ship is barely tolerable, but after dialogue with his wife, Chief O’Brian is later able to articulate an especially perspicacious explanation for his animosity.

“The only people left alive were in an outlying district of the settlement. I was sent there with a squad to reinforce them. Cardassians were advancing on us, moving through the streets, destroying, killing. I was with a group of women and children when two Cardassian soldiers burst in. I stunned one of them. The other jumped me. We struggled. One of the women threw me a phaser, and I fired. The phaser was set at maximum. The man just incinerated, there before my eyes. I’d never killed anything before. When I was a kid, I’d worry about swatting a mosquito. It’s not you I hate, Cardassian. I hate what I became because of you.

So I wonder, how many of us become bitterly angry at a spouse or a parent or a corporation when the interaction fundamentally changes an idealism that shapes out identity? Do we really hate or are we morning the loss of our innocence?

How The Mighty Have Fallen

I was just watching Star Trek: The Next Generation, S3E13 “Déjà Q” when Guinan says, “how the mighty have fallen!” That reminded me of a spoken word prelude in a 1990s Cindy Morgan song and got me to wondering about the origin of that phrase so I Googled it thinking it might have been Shakespeare. To my surprise it turned out to be from the Bible! “How the mighty have fallen! The weapons of war have perished!” 2 Samuel 1:27 (NIV)

On Righteous Causes

Skirts, Pants, and Deuteronomy 22:5

Cognitively-challenged Christians are eager to invoke Deuteronomy 22:5—in judgment of women as well as of men—that “woman shall not wear that which pertaineth unto a man, neither shall a man put on a woman’s garment: for all that do so are abomination unto the LORD.” Some denominations read this as requiring women to wear dresses (or, in the contrapositive, as prohibiting women from wearing pants). Likewise, Deuteronomy 22:5 has been invoked to condemn and deny skirts as menswear. This was certainly my experience when I “saw the light” and “converted” to skirts in 2016, but it has taken me three years to get around to publishing this formal rebuttal.Continue Reading