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On to the post about Maurice’s
BBQ
. What got me thinking about this was that my father-in-law
brought some of the sauce with him on a visit. Somewhere in the last
few years, they have added the rebel flag on the bottle. I guess once
they’ve been pulled from all the store shelves, there is nothing worse
that can happen and they might as well go all out to appeal to their core
constituency. As a datum from what I felt two years ago is
this post from Usenet
(apologies to my newsgroup friends for the
absurdly long link). In previous posts other folks were asking why I
would stop frequenting a place I liked just because I didn’t like the
politics of the owner. This post was my attempt to explain that it’s
more than just disliking the politics, that he is going well out of
his way to make his politics part of his business. This is not a man
who quietly holds a belief and is being persecuted for it. Bessinger
is co-branding his products with a particular brand of southern
racism, the same brand that defies flag changes as impinging upon “our
traditions” and seeks biblical justification and historical
revisionism to rationalize the sins of the old south and the
Confederacy.

The last time I ate in one of his Piggie Park
restaurants, the whole joint seemed to be in a state of decay with the
building noticably deteriorating, no customers and oddest of all, the
counter covered with stacks of photocopies of newspaper articles about
reverse discrimination cases and stories about wrongdoings of prominent
black people. It was really creepy and a dismal
experience. Ultimately, my decision not to purchase his products
anymore (note that I don’t dump it down the sink when it was given as
a gift) is driven by the fact that I feel like a scumbag when I give
him money. This is materially different from disliking the private
politics of a business owner, it is no longer being able to turn off
the voice inside my head that says “this food doesn’t taste as good
as buying it makes me feel bad.”

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Teresa Nielsen-Hayden writes a harrowing essay about harrowing
essay about the covering nature of executives in over their heads

– specifically about the commander-in-chief but broadly about many
people of this sort. I happen to have some above me in organizations
and I recognized the description as being all to accurate. Beware the
executives that substitute bluster for reason – chances are they are
using the bluster is that they don’t have the tools to use the reason.

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I was googling on an old Usenet post of mine to talk about Maurice
Bessinger, the man who runs the Maurice’s BBQ empire. Before I get
into that, I found a post of mine in that same thread that I really
like. When I want to I can be quite sensible. The link to the actual
post is this
but it is like, my post, so surely I can repost in entirety without a
problem.

In article <3A6D83BF.D888020B@home.com>, Kip Williams  
wrote:

> That's good. Why do I suspect, though, that our new leaders will > make every effort to keep anyone here from benefitting from this? > Just wait: they'll find some cryptic passage in Numbers that makes > it immoral to use the technique.

You've just touched on something I've noticed. If an evangelical Christian group or person uses entirely Old Testament passages to support an argument, it is invariably a shaky one (homosexuality, natural inferiority of black people AKA "children of Ham", etc.) I always figure that in these cases, if there were a New Testament support for it, that would have been trotted out first. I always boggle that folks who believe that the sacrifice of Jesus Christ took away the old laws, brought in a world of "the spirit, not of the law" have no problem supporting, say, homosexuality as wrong based entirely on laws that were supposedly repealed by Christ.

My own guess is that the priority order would go approximately something like this:

1) Something Jesus himself said 2) Passage from a Gospel 3) Passage from an epistle of Paul 4) All other New Testatment, save Revelations 5) Revelations 6) Passage from Psalms or Proverbs 7) Books written by Moses 8) Everything else

When Jerry Falwell or Maurice Bessinger starts off with 7 or 8, it says to me they couldn't find any support in 1-6.

d

This is something I always always think about when I hear some
hatemongering fundamentalist using the bible as support for some
bigoted position – God hates gays, the blacks are the sons of Ham and
deserve slavery, women are not to hold public office or whatever
crazy horseshit they happen to be spewing at the time. When that
biblical support is all from Obadiah, it says to me that Jesus was
silent on this issue. That makes it all the more suspicious that
evangelical Christians are inflamed about an issue that Jesus himself
is not on record with an opinion, (ie, homosexuality). That takes an
amount of gall I cannot imagine – to consider oneself so holy that it
would be reasonable to “fill in the gaps” of the ills Jesus didn’t get
around to condemning. As I read the Gospels, Jesus was about love, so
someone speaking in his name yet whose rhetoric of full of things that
are to be hated and shunned (Jerry Falwell) is a liar, a dishonest and
conceited bad steward of the word of God.