Starshine and the Pope

Tuesday, June 18, 2013
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So Starshine needs to learn the history of the 2,000 year old Catholic church? How about the 5,000 year old Hindu or the 4,000 year old Judeo? These histories are irrelevant?

The First Amendment of the U.S. Constitution says: “Congress shall make no law respecting the establishment of religion or prohibiting the free exercise thereof, or abridging the freedom of speech or of the press.”

The United States does not recognize any religion. “No religious test shall ever be required as a qualification to any office or public trust under the United States.” (U.S. Constitution, Article VI, paragraph 3.)

1. Free speech and freedom of the press give Starshine the right to express herself freely.

2. Letter-writer Sharon Kelly copied Starshine by using her right to free speech and free press. My turn now.

3. I’m a senior citizen and a retired teacher of our Constitutional rights. The Catholic church is rigid and intolerant, definitely. The male-dominated church controls the reproductive rights of women.

I am an unsaved agnostic. –Dorothy F. McNeil, Goleta


I, too, am a free thinker. However, I found Starshine Roshelle’s column rude and, more importantly, disrespectful. Her words cast a dark light on the rest of us and were an embarrassment. – Kay Cantor, Santa Barbara


Although I am not a Catholic and possibly may be described as religiously in the nether regions, I find Ms. Starr’s comments beyond offensive. Why The Independent would allow such language is beyond me. – Claudia Gaustad, Santa Barbara


Independent Discussion Guidelines

Keep'em coming Starshine! People should be offended and often.

Ken_Volok (anonymous profile)
June 18, 2013 at 4 p.m. (Suggest removal)

I, personally, am mortally offended that this "Claudia Guastad" chooses to refer to Ms. Roshell as "Ms. Starr", an offensive epithet that reminds many of us painfully of the Clinton impeachment.

typo (anonymous profile)
June 18, 2013 at 5:26 p.m. (Suggest removal)

Ms. Guastad thinks she's Brenda Starr.

Ken_Volok (anonymous profile)
June 18, 2013 at 5:33 p.m. (Suggest removal)

Aren't we lucky that we live in a country where those of us who are believers and those who are not can have this conversation without being thrown in jail for being an Enemy Of The State?

The way to respond to offensive comments is to refute them, not censor them.

billclausen (anonymous profile)
June 18, 2013 at 6:17 p.m. (Suggest removal)

if I were younger, I'd start a band and name it "religiously in the nether regions," lower case and all.

zappa (anonymous profile)
June 18, 2013 at 6:34 p.m. (Suggest removal)

How about naming it "The Mothers of Invention"? (You didn't see THAT coming?)

billclausen (anonymous profile)
June 18, 2013 at 6:37 p.m. (Suggest removal)

Bloggers of Invention

Ken_Volok (anonymous profile)
June 18, 2013 at 6:55 p.m. (Suggest removal)

Right church, wrong pew, as my "elders" used to say?

zappa (anonymous profile)
June 18, 2013 at 6:57 p.m. (Suggest removal)

Kinda like Pepe Le Pew, mammal but not cat.

Ken_Volok (anonymous profile)
June 18, 2013 at 7:02 p.m. (Suggest removal)

Dear Dorothy -

You are clearly another very confused lib-dem. No where has anyone written a letter claiming that Starshine does not have the right to express herself. Your own letter indicates that you believe someone has - and so perhaps, with all due respect, this is a self induced delusion driven by your own bigotry and blind hatred of religion? Just a guess on my part and probably incorrect.

What people are protesting is the complete lack of any decorum or respect, which was 100% Starshine's right NOT to display in her column - but which many recognize as rude and immature - and which completely does not recognize enormous good that the church and the Pope work for in the modern world and recent history. Clear thinking people agree that the modern Catholic church imparts far more good than bad on the world.

willy88 (anonymous profile)
June 18, 2013 at 8:08 p.m. (Suggest removal)

Although Dorothy's opinions are "perhaps" driven by bigotry and blind hatred of religion (just a guess on willy's part, but one he wants to make sure everyone hears, although he graciously acknowledges that he might be wrong), his views on the church are shared by "clear thinking people." How does one identify these "clear thinking people"? Why, they just happen to be people who agree with Willy. What a fortunate coincidence.

pk (anonymous profile)
June 18, 2013 at 9:14 p.m. (Suggest removal)

I'd like to see some examples of the good that the Vatican is said to be imparting to the world.

Ken_Volok (anonymous profile)
June 18, 2013 at 9:36 p.m. (Suggest removal)

No, no Ken, you're doing this all wrong! All Sir Willy needs to do now is give one or two instances of Nice Church Things and he's got you on the back foot.

Instead of giving him that opening, what you ought to have done was just *laugh* at him and his claim that "clear thinking people agree that the modern Catholic church imparts far more good than bad on the world."

typo (anonymous profile)
June 19, 2013 at 12:01 a.m. (Suggest removal)

Look, it's time we all call things for what they are. Starshine did, people got offended because they live in a bubble. Reality is not a church in Carpinteria where they tell you how to vote, surf, and live your life. It is fact based and it is sorely missing in the lives of most of our countrymen. Education, especially higher education is needed now more than ever and it is quickly becoming out of reach for people living in our state: CA.

spacey (anonymous profile)
June 19, 2013 at 12:48 p.m. (Suggest removal)

If a belief system squares with reality (as best it can be approximated), then the proper response to frivolous ridicule is to laugh even more complacently than the ridiculer. Right? If you're right, then why be defensive? But if you're only hoping and praying for Doctrine X to be true, & wallowing in varieties of denial, then go ahead and bellow, if that's all you've got. If you have a faith, then own it as such, don't impose on others for a show of respect. Faith is belief without evidence. Others may have done their homework (thinking, not rote), in shaping their worldviews.

Adonis_Tate (anonymous profile)
June 20, 2013 at 3:26 a.m. (Suggest removal)

Too much faith, not enough fact.

spacey (anonymous profile)
June 20, 2013 at 10:47 a.m. (Suggest removal)

1. Tens of millions of free meals a year to adults and families in the U.S. alone, more than all government agencies combined (excluding school lunch programs)..

2. Millions helped world wide each year during an after disasters with free supplies, rebuilding materials and hundreds of millions of hours of free donated labor.

3. The Catholic church shelters more people than all government programs combined by offering overnight sleeping facilities, bathrooms and showers.

In America the church advocates for the poor and disenfranchised and especially supports illegal immigrants with sanctuary, services and other kinds of support.

Are there examples of idiotic decisions and "men behaving badly"? of course! That's called Human nature - and when it's organized inside a church or inside of bloated government agencies it does not mean that the mission or overall output of either is intrinsically or permanently bad/evil.

willy88 (anonymous profile)
June 20, 2013 at 12:29 p.m. (Suggest removal)

willy88, citing good works is wise policy. But here's what the world has been looking for: defrockment of pedophile priests and their enablers in high positions. So far, it looks like business as usual (or have I missed something?). The old pope was retired, and a fresh face brought in to appease.

Blessed are ye, when men shall revile you.... Rejoice, and be exceeding glad: for great is your reward in heaven.... Ye are the salt of the earth: but if the salt have lost his savour, ... it is thenceforth good for nothing, but to be cast out, and to be trodden under foot of men.

Seems that the new pope brought sugar, not salt.

Adonis_Tate (anonymous profile)
June 20, 2013 at 2 p.m. (Suggest removal)

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