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« B16's Schedule For '07 | Main | Photo Caption »

January 04, 2007

Comments

SDG

"I am Optometrist of Borg. Refraction is futile."

John E

"Force Schmorce, I'm turning on MY tracking computer!"

Esau

Doesn't the guy underneath look like the lizard alien from The Last Starfighter????

Esau

Actually, Tim J.'s previous comment in the other thread definitely applies here --

"Meanwhile, as Gold Five so famously stated while making the Death Star trench run...

Stay on target!!"

bill912

Yeah, I can see better, but now I can't stand up straight.

Esau

"Here's Looing at you, Kid!"

John E

"Look into my eyes..."

John E

"Excuse me big-boy! My eyes are up here!"

Esau

I had to wear this just to see your ... ... tiny bevel!

Mary Kay

When I said "Supersize my glasses," I didn't mean...

Vince C

Let's see Elton John top these babies!"

Good! Now all I need are a pair of tweezers!"

The most advanced set of contact lenses ever! Now you can check your e-mail, talk on your cell phone, cut origami, play the violin, and make a cup of coffee -- all at once! Of course, as the technology advances they eventually get smaller.

Kris

In his advanced age, Master Yoda has to resort to drastic measures...

Esau

To pair with Vince's storyline:

I had to wear this just to see your ... [cough] ... tiny bevel! Now all I need are a pair of tweezers!

Sorry... I couldn't help it!
{;^)

John E

This isn't what I expected when they said the winner would be in their own music video.

John E

"The silver frames make your glasses barely noticable."

John E

"Wait'll you see our contact lenses!"

John E

The Healing of the Blind Man of Jericho....as retold by Realist.

Dan Hunter

Incan ceremonial beer goggles

Jeff Miller

Bifocals are so last year.

Michael

Very classy...using a photo from an international mission eye clinic depicting a poor Bolivian peasant receiving eye care in order to prompt "funny" or "clever" captions. Very classy and charitable, indeed, Jimmy. Next, let's dig up some "funny" pictures from a San Diego soup kitchen showing a homeless man's surprize at receiving a free meal! You know, I heard those dentistry photos from African orphanages are a real hoot!

Akin's charitable move

Brian John Schuettler

I am a creature of God...why are you laughing at me?

Katerina

"Amen, I say to you, what you did not do for one of these least ones, you did not do for me."

And also what you do these least ones, you do to the Lord.

Shame on you and everyone here who contributes to such disrespect, lack of charity, and irreverence. How terrible it is to laugh at those who are in need and seldom receive aid.

What's next Akin?

Katerina

I wonder if a picture of yourself instead of this person from Bolivia would be as funny to you.

Of course not.

Esau

Micheal & Katrina:

I don't believe that there was any intentional malovelent purpose on the part of those who have posted here.

In fact, most of us never actually seen the actual caption for this photo but only saw what seemed like a funny photo!

Let's place this in better context, shall we???

Michael says, "Very classy...using a photo from an international mission eye clinic depicting a poor Bolivian peasant receiving eye care in order to prompt "funny" or "clever" captions."

Katrina says, "How terrible it is to laugh at those who are in need and seldom receive aid."


Would it, then, have made a difference if it weren't a person in need? If it weren't a poor person???

Yet, were was all this self-righteousness when there were similar photos that Jimmy Akin put up in the past depicting other folks???

Is it because they weren't needy as this poor individual?

But, if it should make you both feel so triumphantly better than the rest of us to take up the seat of the Pharisees and cast these stones on us lowly scum-of-the-earth folks here, then so be it!

Michael

Katerina,

You know, some people with a personal allegiance to Jimmy Akin may retort: "Don't take it so seriously, it's not a big deal!" But as you said, I doubt very much that they would appreciate their own picture up on Catholic blogs as the subject of joke and humor. But perhaps even more importantly, the fact that the photo is of a vulnerable peasant receiving much needed medical/eye care and not of Jimmy Akin or even of you and me makes it an especially heinous and fundamentally debased post, whether or not Akin intended any malice. Jesus identified himself with the poor...I cannot imagine how Christian eyes would allow this fact to escape.

Michael

Esau,

It was the Pharisees who were notorious for defending their sins and miscarriages of justice when confronted by Jesus, just as you are defending your own actions now. As Katerina stated, it could have been a photo of anyone, poor or rich. But the fact that a poor person is being exploited for jest makes the problem more acute. If you cannot see the face of Jesus in the poor, then I have nothing more to tell you; you'll have to remedy that problem on your own.

Esau

I'm so glad that Evangelical Catholics are just as well-versed as our Protestant Anti-Catholics in conjuring strawmen!

Brava!

Esau

Michael:

Did you not even read what I had written???

Or do you cling to your strawman???

In fact, most of us never actually seen the actual caption for this photo but only saw what seemed like a funny photo!

Katerina

Esau,

The picture is obviously of an elderly person. Why make fun of them?

How can you even justify it?

Katerina

Esau,

Is it OK for me to tell you that an elderly person looks like "Master Yoda" if we see them out at a restaurant or on the street? Not even an elderly person: anyone.

It's never right. Even if you don't know the caption.

Esau

The very fact that I had remarked "Doesn't the guy underneath look like the lizard alien from The Last Starfighter????" would suggest that I originally thought it was a fictitious picture.

Unless, ofcourse, you actually believe that I would intentionally make fun of poor people.

By the way, did you not even know that there are a certain of my relatives who are, in fact, poor and who suffer various plights themselves???

But, of course, I am more than certain that you both are the best judges of the human heart and that I actually harbor such ill will toward like folks!

Katerina

Esau,

If you want humor, I've seen that American Papist writes some captions for pictures of the Pope. He is not making fun of the Pope's person directly (his wrinkles, his figure, etc.), but of a certain situation that appears funny. I don't criticize that. My point is that I bet no one here likes the pictures of Benedict XVI out there where he is portrayed as the bad guy from Star Wars (I'm not a SW geek, so I dont' know the name).

We also do similar captions of the pope's pictures, but we don't mock who he is or how he looks like. Just imagine when you do make fun of someone's appearance and they happen to be one of the most vulnerable.

Sorry for all the repeated comments.

JohnD

No, it is I who will see YOU!

Esau

Oh yeah, I forgot to mention that these various relatives of mine actually live in disease-infested, poverty-stricken villages in a third world country; yet, hey, both of you are the better judge of the human heart than even our God Himself and actually know the fact that I genuinely hate such people!

Maybe that's why I am often overjoyed with the final torments of some of my relatives who died in such an emaciated state at the end of their lives, for which I could not help but feel powerless in trying to ease the burdens of all my kin!

In fact, I have a number of their pictures and make fun of them on a daily basis!

Katerina

Esau,

How am I supposed to read your mind and know about your relatives? I just go with your actions and what you write. Jimmy did have the "source" link for anyone who wanted to see the source.

Dan Hunter

If anyone wants to take out their anger,and I see a few of our bretheren do,just go to the gym and beat the heavy bag for 5 minutes or hit the weights.
You will feel better.
I am sure God can take it.[The captions that is]
In Hoc Signo

Kris

Just because someone is poor doesn't mean that they can't take a funny picture. Same goes for the well off. I imagine most of the people on this blog would be willing to submit an old high school picture of themselves for the sake of humor. At least I would! I've got some good ones of myself...let me know if you are looking for a good caption photo Jimmy!

Michael

Esau,

In logic, a strawman fallacy is committed whenever one party mischaracterizes another party's argument and then attacks that mischaracterization. Now, I did not restate your argument but responded to certain points of your argument. That means, logically speaking, there was no strawman. If calling out "fallacy!" is the best you can do to obfuscate the real issue, then by all means be my guest. But please don't presume to outwit someone in logical argumentation if you do not understand what certain logical terms actually mean.

Kris,

You wrote:

Just because someone is poor doesn't mean that they can't take a funny picture. Same goes for the well off. I imagine most of the people on this blog would be willing to submit an old high school picture of themselves for the sake of humor.

Since Esau attempted to point out phantom logical fallacies, I will point out that your comments here commit the logical fallacy of false analogy. For your coment to carry any weight, the Aymara man must have fulfilled the following conditions:

1. Taken a funny picture.
2. Was willing to submit that picture for the sake of humor.

Given that the man likely did not think to himself, "This is a funny picture of me," and then decided to submit it to Jimmy Akin for the sake of humor, your analogy is not only false, it is down right irrational.

Esau

How am I supposed to read your mind and know about your relatives?

Katrina,

That's the whole point! Only God alone can judge since it is He who sees the hearts of man!

1 Cor 4:5 Therefore, judge not before the time: until the Lord come, who both will bring to light the hidden things of darkness and will make manifest the counsels of the hearts. And then shall every man have praise from God.


However, you and Michael, without any regard for the very charity that you both speak so highly of, accused me of intentionally making fun of a poor person.

AGAIN:

Most of us never actually had seen the original caption for this photo but only saw what seemed like a funny photo!

The very fact that I had remarked "Doesn't the guy underneath look like the lizard alien from The Last Starfighter????" would suggest that I originally thought it was a fictitious picture.

I mean, come on -- the last photo that was shown by Jimmy were people in Stormtrooper costumes!

Do you really think that a person whose elderly was made fun of as looking like E.T. during the last years of her pitiful life would actually poke fun of another such person?

Esau

The very fact that I had remarked "Doesn't the guy underneath look like the lizard alien from The Last Starfighter????" would suggest that I originally thought it was a fictitious picture.

I mean, come on -- the last photo that was shown by Jimmy were people in Stormtrooper costumes!

Do you really think that a person whose elderly was made fun of as looking like E.T. during the last years of her pitiful life would actually poke fun of another such person?

Oh yeah, yes, Michael, given the above, I certainly make it a point to poke fun of such people whenever I can!

Tim J.

Well, Michael, I guess this is one way to create traffic for your blog.

Katerina

Jimmy,

Needless to say, I'm very disappointed (furious at first) about your post, because I do have high standards of Catholic blogging. I'm pretty sure that a lot of people go through your blog, even other good-willed Christians considering the faith or fallen-away Catholics seeking answers and a post such as this one would disappoint them as well, given that they do have higher standards for our Church. And as representatives of the Church here on the Internet, we have the responsibility to represent Her in the most charitable way we can. I invite you to consider deleting this post or making a clarification.

In Him,
Katerina

RC

"When you get older, and you need bifocals, make sure they put the line in the right place. Y'know, they'll try to do a half-fast job and pass it off on you, like anyone else."

(Actual quote from one of my college math profs.)

John E

Michael, Katerina,
There are probably much bigger battles and more despicable enemies to be fought than Jimmy and everyone here.

Whether or not it is disrespectful to put a phony caption on a picture because the real picture is of a poor elderly woman receiving an eye exam perhaps depends on the caption itself. What seems like a blanket condemnation ("Shame on you and everyone here...") may not be the best way to deliver your message so as to get people to have a change of heart.

Otherwise, if I put on my new hi-tech 3D glasses, I think I SEE what you're saying. I said I think I SEE what you're saying. Get it? Is this thing on?

Maureen

Katerina, I invite you to look into your mirror, look into your Chesterton, and realize that all of us humans are funny-looking critters. God made us as beautiful and bizarre as the rest of Creation, and Jesus was not afraid to take on a body that could look silly.

There is a time to weep, and a time to laugh. And given that those who weep now will laugh last, there is no reason not to take the same amusement in a picture of a poor person (who is, after all, having a happy moment of gaining good vision!) as in one of a rich person. Indeed, we should laugh with great delight at such a wonderful and mysterious and funny sight as a nearsighted woman in a lens machine.

And I speak as an extremely nearsighted woman myself.

Unfortunately, I just watched the movie Arabesque over the weekend, and all I could think of was the very creepy murder of an elderly professor in an opthalmologist's office.

Esau

I mean, come on -- the last photo that was shown by Jimmy were people in Stormtrooper costumes!

But since you, Michael, have assumed the place of God in judging man, then so be it!

But, remember, the very same uncharitable measure by which you judge folks will, thus, be done unto you as well!

I just hope that God does not afflict your family with the same tragedies as those of my members so that you might come to realize personally just what atrocities actual poor folks endure vs that upper middle class lifestyle from which you comfortably cast down such judgments upon those who actually aren't as fortunate!

I shall leave that all in God's hands!

Natalie

I usually enjoy reading your blog (although I may differ from some of our opinions), however I see no humor in playing photo caption with this particular picture. It's not only insulting the poor but also an innocent indigenous Bolivian woman. I would kindly request that you change it in the spirit of Christ. Thank you.

Esau

My sincerest apologies to those here who had to endure my ramblings. This shall be the end of it (for this thread, at least). God bless.

Realist

A per the comment on the Blind Man from Jericho: 256±. Healing of Bartimaeus: (1a) Mark 10:46b-52 = Matt 20:29-34 = Luke 18:35-43, (1b) Matt 9:27-31

Item: 256
Stratum: II (60-80 CE)
Attestation: Single
Historicity: negative
Common Sayings Tradition: No

http://www.faithfutures.org/JDB/jdb256.html

Katerina

Maureen,

If you happen to fall in a kind of funny way and I see that you're not hurt, I'll probably laugh. We all do that. But, Maureen, if you and I are walking on the street and we see an elderly homeless person fall and even though he/she wouldn't be hurt... Would it be right to laugh?? I'll leave you with that one.

This is an important battle. It is good to demand responsibility from all of us who represent the Catholic Church on the internet.

DJ

I'm somewhat in between in my opinions on this matter (whether its is uncharitable or not for Jimmy to have this blog entry)...I thought I would post these:
Here
Here
and Here

Not quite the same thing as the villager, but then again, upon seeing that picture of themselves, that particular villager may or maynot have a sense of humor about it themselves. We don't know.

Esau

poking fun at a poor Aymara man because of his complexion

What a completely ludicrous accusation!

Sorry folks, but I've got to say, Michael, what a seriously sinister judge of man you are!


Did you even bother to consider that the last photo put up by Jimmy for photo caption were folks in stormtrooper costume??? Thus, did you even consider that combox commenters here did not actually read the original caption and thought the person in this photo was actually wearing a costume himself???

What charity! What Christian morals you seem to demonstrate -- one that definitely invests in calumny, of all things so Christian!

Curious

I honestly have to say that, when I saw the picture, it was funny regardless of who's behind it. I see no malevolent intent. Anyone behind that rig would look goofy. Particularly if you have had these kinds of tests done. I immediately saw myself in the rig. Jimmy, maybe you ought to photoshop yourself into it. Or better yet, Katerina or Michael (just kidding!).

Lori

This seems to have started quite a debate, but I just wanted to say that it does seem a little uncharitable to be making fun of the person in the picture. Obviously, I don't think Mr. Akin intended that, but it still seems in poor taste.

I know we should all have a sense of humor and be able to laugh at ourselves and all of that, but if it was me in that picture, I'd be pretty upset with some of the comments being made.

vitae

Michael,
Re: your post of 2:14:54. Do you always answer your fellow blogger's comments in comboxes? Seems to me you could say the same thing on your blog.

Mary

Mary

that's better

SDG

Michael & Katrina, lay off the crack and stop attacking people as a means of advertising your own blog.

Jimmy, I can't believe the forbearance you've shown here in allowing M & K to post. At the very least, if I were you, I would not allow them to use your combox as a venue for linking to their own blog any more.

Mary Kay

Who let the trolls out?

Nutcrazical

And making a post in your widely-read blog attacking another Catholic blogger is so, so charitable, right? You did the same to AmericanPapist. This kind of thing will only hurt your blog, not theirs.

Nutcrazical

The Healing of the Blind Man of Jericho....as retold by Realist.

This one won the contest, in my opinion. *hands prize to John E*

Lacy

"Ah, yes, my free 3-D glasses! Now if you will kindly bring my popcorn and start the feature presentation of Shark Boy and Lava Girl..."


Mary Kay

As a (cheap) means of temporarily driving traffic to their blog, I suppose it temporarily worked. I just left them a note that they owe Jimmy an apology.

The optometry thingamajig was what was humorous. They had to be actively looking for a reason to kick up a fuss to click through to the source of the photo. Speaking for myself, and I would guess most of those making comments, no one was making fun of the poor because the it wasn't the person who was the subject of the humor.

Dr. Eric

Good Grief!

David B.

So you see, Young Skywalker, it is not impossible for a Sith a survive falling into a generator pit, provided he has the right machinary to keep him alive!

Thomas

I don't see anything in the original post referencing that the woman was poor, receiving charity, or of any particular race or ethnicity. I see no reason to think that this woman is being "made fun of" on any of those counts,

It is somewhat credible to charge Jimmy with making fun of the woman's skin, in the third caption he proposed. I'm sure that he didn't mean anything by it, though I will admit that it wasn't the best thing to say.

I do find the judgemental and fundamentalistic attitude of some of those objecting to this post to be objectionable. Making a post of reprimand on another blog was an especially poor decision, in my opinion. Even if it wasn't meant to be, it seems to be a shallow and divisive attempt to get publicity for your blog. I'll assume it wasn't meant to be that way, but as a brother in Christ, I'm telling you that it does seem that way, and I suggest you consider removing it and replacing it with a simple statement indicating you thought better of it,

David B.

Michael and Katerina,

Jimmy has had charity on you (unfortunatly unreciprocated)and your endless posts.

Your rash condemnation of Jimmy's intentions and of his character were the most unchristian and uncatholic thing I have seen posted on this thread.

And I think an apology is in order for Mr Akin.

martie

Well, Michael, I guess this is one way to create traffic for your blog.

Michael & Katrina, lay off the crack and stop attacking people as a means of advertising your own blog.

As a (cheap) means of temporarily driving traffic to their blog, I suppose it temporarily worked.

Even if it wasn't meant to be, it seems to be a shallow and divisive attempt to get publicity for your blog

See definition, link whore.

MD

Hey, Michael--

People could turn this back on you, too.

E.G.:I notice that "Proof of Life" is on your list of favorite movies. I am sure you would be fine if someone came on your blog and repeatedly posted how this film, with its huge amount of profanity, is such a pathetic film choice for a supposedly Catholic blogger like you to approve of.

barnett eades

Sickly humorous comments by J Akins under the picture of the man having eye exam lead me to never bother with this blog again.

Mary Kay

barnett, Thank you for sharing.

Of course, if you had actually read the comments, you'd know that it was not the person who was found humorous. But then that would take effort, rather than making superficial comment and flouncing out.

Francis DS

Come one people. No one is laughing at the woman. What's funny is the gadget interposed on the woman's face -- on ANY face.

Anyone who has had to wear those optometrist contraptions and didn't find it funny, cast the first stone.

I bet those Bolivian peasants were also all laughing at each other while they were wearing that thing. Peasants have a sense of humor too, often more robust than ours.


Dr. Eric

Exactly, Francis!

Michael

I noticed a lot of insults toward Katerina and me throughout this thread, ultimately diverting the real question of whether displaying a picture of a human person so that we can make fun of the way she looks both physically (her sun-worn skin and wrinkles) and procedurally (behind an opthomologic device) is, in fact, a just and charitable action. Is this the type of joyful laughter described in Ecclesiastes or the blind jest described in Wisdom? Definitely the latter. A simple question of whether our own Lord, who no doubt possessed much more wit and humor than any of us (perfect human, and all), would find anything redeemable in Jimmy Akin's post. Those involved in the Jimmy Akin personality cult need to think long and hard about that one directly.

Katerina and I forgive all those who dished out the cheap shots and personal insults we received here. And for those who likewise detected something awful and deplorable in this post like us, we commend you for looking with the eyes of Christ.

Katerina and I do not maintain our blog for internet traffic. We are quite satisfied with our readership and high level of informed comments from our readers. So while many of you wildly accuse us of seeking more readers or of being sensationalists, we will continue our work of preaching Christ beyond apologetics and into our concrete social reality.

John

I think the caption referencing her skin was in very bad taste. I have very bad skin, and if after having gone to the doctor one day I noticed my photo on the Internet with such a caption I would be mortified, and then to find out it was being done by fellow Catholics, including especially someone as well known and respected as JA, would be crushing. Does the fact that the person in the photo is someone likely to never see this blog make any difference? She is still a person and doesn't deserve to be treated merely as the butt of a joke. My two cents for what they are worth.

Mary Kay

Michael, you are either unable or unwilling to read that many, many posts that said what was humorous was the optometry thingy.

Has it occurred to you that the many comments are because people see the situation differently than you?

How very noble of you and Katerina to "forgive" those who don't kowtow to your dictatorial insistence that the world exists the way you see it.

Tim J.

"Those involved in the Jimmy Akin personality cult..."

How do you know about the Jimmy Akin Personality Cult? Dang! Now we'll have to change the password again!

Everybody remember to wear your cowboy hats at the next super-secret meeting, or there will be NO Start Trek cartoon.

Sorry... ANIMATED Star Trek.

Esau

Katerina and I forgive all those who dished out the cheap shots and personal insults we received here.

MICHAEL:

Oh, thank you, My God, for thine mercy!

How gracious and Christian of you to grant us such forgiveness, in spite of the fact that you leveled against many innocent here such malicious intentions without even so much any charitable consideration whatsoever!

You have not only ferociously hurled such heinous charges against Jimmy and the rest of the innocent here but already condemned the lot of us without even so much as a trial since you are more content to play the role of God Himself and damn all of us regardless of innocence!

Could that very well be due to perhaps:

- a certain envy of Jimmy Akin's popularity as a distinguished Catholic Apologist?

- a tremendous jealousy of JImmy's level of knowledge as it concerns a variety of topics not only apologetics?

- the popularity of his blog amongst fellow Catholics and non-Catholics alike?

- his proficiency in skillful debating, apologetics and profound philosophical as well as theological thought?


Consider well the repercussions of the actions that you both are taking here by this calumny you both have conspired and are committing so unrighteously against those innocent here as well as God!

However, the worse crime that's been committed here is the fact that due to the calumny you both have conspired against Jimmy himself, you've attacked the credibility of the very person (whose innocence is yet to be disproved in spite of your baseless, hostile accusations) from whom many non-Catholics (and Catholics for that matter) could very well have come to know the Fullness of Truth and be saved, as can only be learned from the already few out there who truly know of the Catholic Faith and have the reputation as his to help bring folks into the Church!

In other words, you have helped to destroy one of the finest Catholic Apologists we have and, in a sense, have furthered the cause of Anti-Catholics out there and, furthermore, have discouraged perhaps many of those who may very well had been open initially to hearing about the Catholic Faith from Jimmy due to his prominence (be it here, at Catholic Answers, etc.), but because of this unfounded accusation on both your parts, which, for all intents and purposes, you both conspired to accomplish for perhaps selfish reasons, and the actual malicious intention you both have demonstrated here in your attempts to bring down Jimmy by such cheap shots, you've helped to drive away folks who may very well have been open to coming into or knowing about the Catholic Church due to or through Jimmy, but with a fraud such as Jimmy, why should anyone trust him now if at all???

paul zummo

In these times of high natural gas prices it can get costly to heat your home. So it must be great to be able to keep warm in the glow of one's own santimony.

OF COURSE this picture is funny. A very small person is stuck behind this gigantic contraption. It would be as though someone took a picture of me (6'3" and, err, over 200 lbs.) walking my mother's dog - a three pound Yorkie. It's funny because it just seems odd.

And you know what? Isn't that wonderful? Isn't it a great example of how quirky life can be? As someone noted above, we all look a little funny. We're all "odd" in our own mysterious ways, and it's these charming quirks that makes life so great.

I am not going to claim that I know for sure that the person who is in the picture would necessarily laugh if they somehow came upon this post, but considering that most people have a cheerier dispostion than certain bloggers with nine foot polls crammed up their assuming posteriors, it's a good bit she would.

paul zummo

I love the fire in Esau's 8:59 post, but I couldn't help but think of a certain movie line:

"And I'm not going to sit around here and let you bad mouth the United States of America."

Esau

Paul Zummo:

You must be a mind-reader!

Actually, I originally was going to start off my post by saying:

"Tim J., I know you said that Jimmy is adult enough to defend himself, but I have to say the following."


At some point, I believe Popeye says, "I've had all I can stand! I can't stands no more!"

God bless!

Nate Wildermuth

Michael and Katerina have good points, though I can see how people wouldn't realize that this was a real picture of a real human being if they hadn't clicked on the 'source' link. But clearly Akin had clicked on the source link - that's where he got it. You know, I guess I'd feel like we ought to cut Akin some slack if he wasn't advocating things like torture (or advocating redefining torture as organ failure or whatever else lets us do horrible things to human beings).

Pictures like this might seem funny at first, if we don't know where they come from, but once you know that its some poor old person in the third world, well then that's got to make you think a little more. Or at least, we ought to be thinking about it in a way that isn't focused on our own amusement. We live in luxury while much of the rest of the world lives without basic necessities. The universal destination of goods (sharing) means that "we are really responsible for everyone else."

Michael and Katerina have a hard job - disturbing the comfortable and comforting the disturbed!

I'd propose this caption:

"I came into this world for judgment, so that those who do not see might see, and those who do see might become blind."

Brother Cadfael

Michael,

You can take this as an insult or as constructive criticism, although it is definitely meant as the latter.

Mary Kay was pretty much right on point when she suggested that there is more than one way to look at the picture and the post, and they are not all bad. As Paul Zummo noted, what many (and I would posit possibly most here) find funny is the equipment, not the peasant lady. There may, of course, be aspects of the post, and certainly the combox, that are more or less insensitive, or at least slightly so (and I would guess in the case of the post, at least, unintentionally so). John validly points out that someone could take the caption about the bad skin the wrong way, and that one is perhaps closer to making fun of a personal trait than the others. (Although, again, I don't think even that one necessarily should be read that way. I'm just admitting that on second thought it appears more susceptible of that reading than some of the others.)

I am sympathetic to the point that we sometimes do things, unintentionally one would hope, that do not necessarily reflect well on the Body of Christ. Your posts seem to me to imply that no one who finds the picture or the post funny is able to see with the eyes of Christ as well as you, and that no one could have pure motives in posting the picture for comment. In other words, you have failed to give anyone here the benefit of the doubt, and have assumed the worst possible motives where they do not necessarily (or probably) exist. One could make the argument that that is more uncharitable than either the post or many of the comments.

At the same time, I thank you and Katrina for at least raising the issue. You make many valid points, and it is often useful to step back and consider more carefully how our actions might be perceived by others.

God bless.

Nate Wildermuth

Esau,

That's a pretty funny last post you had. You're being sarcastic, right? :) But let's say that people stopped coming to Akin as a source of authentic teachings about the Church. This would be a good thing, in my opinion, because a lot of what he says and argues goes against what the Church teaches. I know you and others probably disagree, but that's just how I see it, and how a lot of others see it. For example, I only have to make a few second search to find something un-Christian:

"The fact that the Iraqis are simply proposing to hang (Saddam) means that they are showing him considerable mercy"

If Akin is convincing men and women that hanging someone is a work of mercy, then he is causing a lot of damage. The funny/horrifying thing is that I've had people use very rational sounding arguments to show why torturing and killing a person is an act of mercy. It's mind blowing. But when you've got people as smart as Akin justifying things as an apologist, a lot of people are going to follow his lead.

I don't feel it's my job to counter all the misinformation that comes through this blog, but there are those like Michael and Katerina who are going to point out the hard truths that cut into our fun and games. Someone said, I forget who, that evil can be so banal. That so many horrific things are done by so many good natured people in such a jolly way - it makes one cringe.

Julie

The fact is that the person behind that picture is not recognizable. Some have referred to this person as a man, others as a woman. It's an elderly person mostly hidden behind a humongous machine. There are probably a lot of peasants in that part of the world who would look identical if perched behind that device. There is no reason for me to think that anything malicious was meant towards a particular person. Any tiny person would look funny behind the device. I'm not a huge fan of silly photo captions but I can't agree that anything bad has occurred here.

bill912

"...a lot of what (Jimmy) says and argues goes against what the Church teaches."

Care to enlighten us with a few *specific* examples?

Esau

Nate Wildermuth:

Your thoughtful comments, among those which are:

...though I can see how people wouldn't realize that this was a real picture of a real human being if they hadn't clicked on the 'source' link.

and

We live in luxury while much of the rest of the world lives without basic necessities.

are very much appreciated.

It's a personal frustration of mine that though I am able to live my life in such a wonderful country as America where I am afforded many great opportunities for prosperity (thank God and, indeed, my Lord & Saviour, Jesus Christ!); yet, I cannot help but feel a daily frustration on my part that I cannot help all those who are part of my extended family who actually live in the third world, suffer tremendous adversities as poor shelter and lack of food, and actually die in poverty.

It's easier for folks such as Michael or Katrina to simply look at pictures of poor people and feel such sympathy. However, it's an entirely different matter altogether when the people in the picture is actually your relatives.


About Jimmy, as I've mentioned in the past, there is much that I disagree with him; yet, you cannot deny that amongst the Catholic apologists we have out there, in spite of his shortcomings, Jimmy defends the Church and brings those outside the Church (even Catholics) to a greater understanding of what the Catholic Church is all about.

Now, admittedly, he may not be perfect. But, you cannot deny that what he does, in spite of his personal failings, serves our Lord and the Church he founded.

Further, I still would have to see for certain if whether or not Jimmy indeed carried any actual malicious intention in this post of his.

You cannot condemn people with a mere accusation -- you've got to make certain you have all the facts first.

God bless and thank you for your understanding -- especially of the poor in the world.

Monica

Dang, there's a Jimmy Akin personality cult and nobody ever invited me! I'm crushed. Is it because I don't own a cowboy hat? Racists!

patrick

Is it just coincidence that I read that post by American Papist which alsocontains a comment by MichaelbeforeThisOne?

'Jimmy Akin Personality Cult'? Why am I not a member? Am I not too Texan enough (Then again, I'm not actually Texan)? Do I have to wear sombreros? Do I have to dance Square Dancing? I demand membership NOW! I will gladly die for Mr. Jimmy our Lord,and Messiah!
...Just joking. Though I DO demand membership. Don't lock the doors and change passwords yet!

P.S. Is there also a 'Karl Keating Personality Cult' and/or 'American Papist Personality Cult' around here?

patrick

Is it just coincidence that I read that post by American Papist which alsocontains a comment by MichaelbeforeThisOne?

'Jimmy Akin Personality Cult'? Why am I not a member? Am I not too Texan enough (Then again, I'm not actually Texan)? Do I have to wear sombreros? Do I have to dance Square Dancing? I demand membership NOW! I will gladly die for Mr. Jimmy our Lord,and Messiah!
...Just joking. Though I DO demand membership. Don't lock the doors and change passwords yet!

P.S. Is there also a 'Karl Keating Personality Cult' and/or 'American Papist Personality Cult' around here?

Jared

My my my. I thought I spent too much time on this board. Getting all up in a tizzy over silly photo caption post.

How sad that you would waste so much energy in attacking someone over this.

Henry Karlson

It is interesting to see how people defend this by saying the caption is to be about a common and useful instrument which is used to help heal people's eyesight. This is what is supposed to be mocked, not the person.

Fine that would be better if that were the case. Why were the captions aimed at the person, however? In reality it was the person who was mocked and made less than human. In reality, it was the person who was shown less than Christianity charity. In reality it is Jesus you just mocked.

Jared

In reality, you've gotten your undies in a bundle over some silly, nonconsequential post.

Jared

See, here's what I don't get: this is a standard device used for checking people's eyes. EVERYONE looks silly behind that blasted thing.

Seriously, don't you guys think you're being a bit over-scrupulous?

Henry Karlson

If everyone looks silly and it is all about the machine, then why are their all kinds of mockery of the person behind the machine, with comments which have nothing to do with the machine itself?

As Jesus said, what you do to the least of these... you do to me!

Consider what you say is actually a statement about Jesus. I can imagine all those who mocked him at the cross could and did argue the validity of their jokes, saying everyone with a crown of thorns looks funny, so why are you all so scrupulous?

Jared

You're comparing a piece of medical aparatus (which I need to get behind myself every two years or so) to the CROWN OF THORNS?

If that weren't border-line blasphemy, I'd laugh.

Henry Karlson

Jesus is the one who said -- what you do to the least of these, you do with me.

I am comparing the two because it is a representation of how many humans show their base nature at laughing at the misfortune of others. The crown of thorns was the culmination of this, and Jesus becomes everyman in the persecution he suffered with that crown.

It is showing that your mockery of some poor person, trying to turn them into an object of ridicule instead of a person to be respected, is in reality something which Jesus has already suffered for, and is something Jesus said his sufferings united him with others who suffered such persecutions in solidarity with their persecution.

Remember well the story of Lazarus next...

Mary Kay

Esau, thank you for your 10:09 post. You said what I was thinking, but didn't feel to be in the position to say.

Michael, Katerina and now Henry with comparing a piece of optometry equipment with a crown of thorns (oh, puhl-leeease) - their comments indicate ...

well, I'm not going to say this as eloquently as Esau. I know a few things about people who have known deep privation and/or pain and suffering. Their comments are very different than those who know ABOUT suffering but have not yet the depth of the experience.

Ask any parent. They'll tell you that they thought they knew what love was - until they held that newborn for the first time.

Not said well, but I have to scoot out the door.

patrick

Come on, while the caption may be a bit in bad taste, lighten up people! You seem to be too serious over Jimmy and us here. While Jimmy might be wrong by starting this photo caption, you take them too seriously as if we actually mean to malign or bad mouth the person in the picture.

On a side note, Is it just coincidence that I firstwent to American Papist and saw that photo caption thread with Mr. Michael's comment first before going here?

I'm very sorry at my above post. I'm only a worthless scum who lives in a matchbox sized home. I got broken teeth, dull eyes and never took a bath for a year. I ate garbage for breakfast and work as a beggar. I'm just a normal person and I guess I'm never allowed to have sense of humor. I'm really sorry for typing all this.

Jury Foreman

Your Honor, the Jury finds for the defendant. The prececution failed to prove their case.

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