[percy-l] The West Wing's comment on Biblical contradictions

Parlin, Steven PARLINS at culver.org
Thu Aug 14 22:25:21 EDT 2003

Yes...yes, Karey. I saw the episode, and Bartlett was brilliant in his
delivery (very nicely crafted by the west wing writers, I must say...it was,
I confess, very well done), and the ignorant tight-ass English Phd was of
course rendered silent and helpless...of course. Convenient. 
However, I would like to have seem him tangle with an Orthodox Catholic
Theologian, (or anyone who knows his/her way around the bible) on the matter
(which the writers obviously knew they couldn't do without repercussions).
But, while that would have been more fair, it wouldn't have been very
interesting and it wouldn't have served the agenda of the writes of the WW. 
That is...He wouldn't have been able to proudly say..."Toby...that's how I
beat him", for he would have been set straight on his self-stlyed
interpretations of scripture --all of which was taken completely out of the
context of the Creation and Salvation Narrative. 
None of what he said really made sense following the incarnation. Those were
all proscriptions of the LAW that were done away with, or rather fulfilled
and transformed... but natural law is fixed, like gravity. Moreover, the NT
is rife with references to homosexuality as an "abomination".  Romans, 1
Timothy, 1 Corinthians... 
But again... its the whole creation and salvation narrative that makes the
case for how disordered homosexuality is, not just isolated biblical sound
Nevertheless... I agree with you. I'd vote for him too. 
BTW: I think its a much stronger case to leave Christianity out of this...
the Natural Law is unbiased and is quite clear on the matter. Sex is
principally for procreation, not recreation. The penis is not designed for
the anus. 

 -----Original Message-----
From: Karey L. Perkins [mailto:karey at charter.net]
Sent: Thursday, August 14, 2003 8:40 PM
To: Percy-L: Literary and Philosophical Discussion
Subject: [percy-l] The West Wing's comment on Biblical contradictions

The text is from the script of a "West Wing" episode; sound clip link
included for those who'd rather hear it.  Just another take on the whole
(BTW, I wish Bartlett were president - really.)
----- Original Message ----- 
From: ken  <mailto:kdenney at mindspring.com> denney 
To: Karey L. Perkins <mailto:karey at charter.net>  
Sent: Thursday, August 14, 2003 8:55 PM
Subject: Re: Fw: [percy-l] 

Here's the sound clip:


 The president of the United States was about to address a gathering of
radio talk show hosts in the White House. As the president entered the hall,
they all stood and applauded. All, that is, except one — a woman with
strikingly blond hair, wearing a bright green suit. At first, her presence
rattled the president. He lost his train of thought several times before he
finally spoke directly to the sitting talk show host.

“Excuse me, doctor,” the president said to her. “It’s good to have you here.
Are you an M.D.?”

“A Ph.D.,” she retorted smartly.

“In psychology?” he pursued.

“No, sir,” she said.



“Social work?”

“I have a Ph.D. in English literature,” she replied.

“I’m asking,” continued the president, “because on your show people call in
for advice and you go by the title ‘doctor,’ and I didn’t know if maybe your
listeners were confused by that and assumed you had advanced training in
psychology, theology, or health care.”

“I don’t believe they are confused. No, sir,” she responded.

“Good,” said the president, raising his voice sarcastically. “I like your
show. I like how you call homosexuality an abomination.”

“I don’t say homosexuality is an abomination, Mr. President,” she replied
haughtily. “The Bible does.”

“Yes, it does!” he shouted. “Leviticus 18:22.” The president was just
warming up. “I wanted to ask you a couple of questions while I had you here.
I’m interested in selling my youngest daughter into slavery as sanctioned in
Exodus 21:7. She’s a Georgetown sophomore, speaks fluent Italian, always
cleared the table when it was her turn. What would a good price for her be?”

After a brief moment, he continued: “While thinking about that, can I ask
another? My chief of staff, Leo McGarry, insists on working on the Sabbath.
Exodus 35:2 clearly says he should be put to death. Am I morally obligated
to kill him myself or is it OK to call the police?”

Now on a roll, the president steamed on triumphantly. “Here’s one that’s
really important, ‘cause we’ve got a lot of sports fans in this town.
Touching the skin of a dead pig makes one unclean, Leviticus 11:7. If they
promise to wear gloves, can the Washington Redskins still play football? Can
Notre Dame? Can West Point?

“Does the whole town really have to be together to stone my brother John for
planting different crops side by side?

“Can I burn my mother in a small family gathering for wearing garments made
from two different threads?

“Think about those questions, would you? One last thing. While you may be
mistaking this for your monthly meeting of the ignorant tight-a** club, in
this building when the president stands, nobody sits.”



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