- Activist Feedback
- Essay: What Might a Distinctly Christian
Faith Look Like? Part 2: Rejection of Scapegoating
- This Week’s
Sermon from Rev. Frank and Mary Hoffman
- Comments on the Term
1. Activist Feedback
Robert and Gracia Fay
We are happy to report that the San Diego Earth
Day fair April 22 at which we tabled for CVA, as we have for a number
of years past, went quite well in 2012. Although the day was
unseasonably cold and overcast forSan Diego, and attendance was
perhaps down a little, our table had a very good location and was
rarely without visitors. We were ably assisted by a new volunteer,
Nara, a lovely young women who was very outgoing and committed and had
the added virtue of being bilingual and was able to speak in Spanish
to the many Latino visitors. Virtually visitors all were friendly and
receptive -- one, who started out arguing from a biblical
fundamentalist point of view, came around toward the end of the
conversation to our compassionate understanding of Christianity for
today in regard to food and animals! Much of our literature went, and
we will have to replenish it for next year.
Every good wish.
2. Essay: What Might a Distinctly Christian Faith Look
Like? Part 2: Rejection of Scapegoating
unfairly attributing blame to other individual(s), and then punishing
the supposedly guilty party(ies). The scapegoating process has always
brought people together in their common contempt for victim(s), their
collective accusation and punishment of the victim(s), and the
camaraderie that accompanies the collective alleviation of guilt. The
Hebrew Scriptures tell a story of humanity advancing from scapegoating
violence to a rejection of scapegoating. The accusations in the Garden
of Eden and later the human and nonhuman sacrifices were grounded in
scapegoating – attributing one’s own guilt to other individuals.
However, the later prophets denounced sacrificial violence, and the
Suffering Servant in Isaiah (Ch. 53) is a beautiful exposé of the
scandal of scapegoating.
The New Testament provides many
stories of Jesus siding with the victims of scapegoating, and
ultimately he becomes a victim of scapegoating himself. His
victimization betrays once and for all the injustice and immorality of
scapegoating, and indeed those in the crowd who called for his
execution acknowledge their guilt by punishing themselves, beating
their own chests on the way home (Luke 23:48).
I don’t think
Christianity is unique in identifying the scapegoating process and
offering teachings that call for a rejection of scapegoating. While I
do think Christianity is distinctive in this regard, Christianity’s
distinctiveness is not a crucial issue. What I think is important is
that Christianity offers a path toward creating the realm of God “on
earth as in heaven” – a realm that does not include the injustice and
harmfulness of scapegoating. However, if scapegoating functions as the
glue that holds communities together, what can bind communities
instead? We’ll consider this question next week.
3. This Week’s Sermon from Rev. Frank and
Eating a Mother for Mother’s Day
4. Comments on the Term “Vegcon”
In response to “vegan versus
vegcon,” the premise is untrue. Many people choose vegan diets and
lifestyles for other than moral, ethical reasons. Some choose it
simply to rebel! I suggest reworking the premise.
my stomach did not well tolerate flesh food – I had a high acid
stomach and could not drink coffee or orange juice. Now, as a vegan, I
Before, when I ate dairy, I had no regular female cycle.
Once I eliminated dairy, voila, extremely regular 28-day cycles with
the moon even.
Before, when I ate dairy, I was constipated
constantly. Once I eliminated that, voila, easy elimination.
So, there can be very specific physiological reasons that have nothing
to do with morals for one to choose veganism.
I, too, have tried to come up with
an alternative to "vegan." Like David, I'm not wild about that word
(no disrespect to Donald Watson!).
Sorry to say, "vegcon"
doesn't quite do it for me. It's too hard to figure out how to say it,
and it sounds silly when I utter either Veeg-Con or Veedj-Con.
Imagine how puzzling the pronunciation would be for non-vegans, half
of whom still say "vay-gun" instead of "vee-gun."
right that veganism isn't about food alone. Maybe the word that
describes us shouldn't have food in it at all. That just perpetuates
the misconception that animals can legitimately be considered food
by humans and that vegetables are merely an alternative food as
opposed to the only real food there is!
In other words, maybe
we should quit emphasizing carnism vs veganism.
conversation be about speciesism, instead? Speciesism vs .... ? What's
a word that defines us as nonspeciesist? If someone isn't a racist, is
he called a nonracist? Is someone who's not a sexist a nonsexist?
We have a consciousness of creatures, and a conscience about
creatures. We fight conscientiously for creatures.
case, might we call ourselves "creature conscious"? CreCon or CreaCon
for short? Ugh!
If we all put our heads together, we should
be able to come up with a catchy, pronounceable, accurate,