WWIII – We Are Already There

From the Desert with feet planted firmly in the Cornfield
From the Desert with feet planted firmly in the Cornfield

This past week, Pope Francis stated that he was seeing pieces of World War III already taking place, following the Paris 6-prong attacks.

I wrote this op-ed back on June 27:

In social media, on blogs, in coffee shops and pubs, you can hear or read concern if current events may lead us into World War III.

I would submit we are already there.

Whether you believe or do not believe in prophecy – any prophecy – biblical, Islamic or any other, it is interesting that four of the nations currently emeshed in the war on terrorism are named prominently in end of time foretelling. All four are also supporters or providing aid and shelter to jihadists bent on the destruction of the Great Satan, the US of A, and western civilization.

Those four nations are: Libya, Persia or Iran, Syria and the ancient empire of Babylon – Iraq.

When you look at how many nations around the world are involved in this struggle of ideology, it is clear that the world is at war. When you look at how many continents are under attack, it is clear that the world is at war.

One of the stated goals of the Islamic State, the self-proclaimed caliphate, is the ushering in the final battle of Armageddon and the supremacy of Islam over all peoples of the world. From Jerusalem and Babylon, the caliphate will rule the world.

I further submit that World War III began on September 11, 2001. Up until that time there had been bombings and attacks, but each country, each nation dealt with the problem on their own.

With the airliner attacks in New York City and Washington D.C, the majority of the world rallied around the United States in seeking revenge and extracting retribution on Osama bin Laden, Al Qaeda and those who gave them aid and comfort – the Taliban.

Yet this war is not your war of nation against nation. This is a new kind of war of ideology versus ideology, civilization versus civilization. This war is not like any other.

The idea of bringing the world to submission and death to all who oppose has happened before. Most recently in the 1930s and 1940s, we saw the rise of Adolph Hitler and the National Socialist Party (Nazis) seeking the implementation of a 1,000-year Reich and the Aryan Empire. The world rallied against this monster and his henchman along with his allies – the empire of Japan and the fascist state of Benito Mussolini in Italy.

But that was a more traditional struggle. Nations aligned with nations against other nations. This time it is the nations aligning against a foe who does not play by any rules and without geographic boundaries.

If the West is defeated, be assured that the war will not stop. The attention will then turn on Eastern Civilization. China, Japan and Southeast Asia will become the target.

There can only be one outcome.

Either the West destroys or weakens the jihadist terrorists to the point of making them not more than a deadly irritant or the fanatical soldiers of terrorism win.

Will the world survive?

Will nations survive?

Who will win?

Will this war last for decades, centuries, a millennia?

From the Cornfield, are we on the edge of the battle to end all battles or are we allowing emotion and fear to mislead our reality?

Middle Ground – Marriage Equality & Religious Freedom

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We – humans – have a bad habit of making problems or creating issues where there are none.

Following last weeks decision by the US Supreme Court that all legal-aged couples, without regard to the gender of the parties, has a constitutional right to dignity and to apply and receive a license to have their long-term relationship recognized by the state with all the rights, privileges and responsibilities that entails, to the right and to the left there were battle cries.

On the right among social conservatives, there was the call to rally the troops to protect religious liberty – even though the Supreme Court majority did not abridge religious liberty in any way.

On the left among social liberals (primarily in the GLBT community) a siren call went out to form the lines to force religious organizations to put their “sincerely held religious beliefs on the shelf or you hate me and are a bigot and violate my right to marry.” This even though the Supremes in no way gave any right or mandate to the GLBT and their supporters to demand religious bodies to abridge their freedom of free exercise guaranteed by the 1st Amendment.

This whole mess is man-made ridiculousness.

There is a simple solution, one which I have advocated for years. Those who read or follow my dribble will recognize this simple solution from my Principles Which I Carry Over, which I have posted for the world to see for the past few years.

To quote:

Same-gender relationships should be afforded the benefit of state blessing just as opposite-gender relationships now are. There is no reason to complicate or not allow equality under the law with all the benefits and protections afforded opposite-gender couples over the use of a word on the state license. Best option is that all state licenses use the term civil union on all state documents. Let the couples have a “marriage” privately within the framework of their religious institutions or according to their moral view. All couples, whether same-gender or opposite-gender, should be afforded the same rights and benefits under the law when receiving a license to recognize the joining of the two individuals legally.

To put it more simply, the Justices upheld that states must recognize all legal-aged, consenting couples right to wed. The Justices did not take away the states rights to regulate marriage in several areas.

States still determine the age of majority and at what age minors must get parental consent.

States still determine how closely related by blood couples may wed.

States still determine residency requirements to obtain a license.

States still determine who may issue licenses.

States still determine who officiates marriages.

On the last issue, states deciding who can and can’t perform ceremonies – this is the solution.

For “official” state recognition in accordance with the Supreme Court ruling, all exchange of vows must be conducted by a civil servant acting in a secular role as an agent of the state.

Those who wish to have a religious ceremony can plan, can spend, can be as lavish as their church allows, but after the official, civil ceremony. Same-gender couples can do the same, but would have to find a church or religious body which agrees that God blesses both gay and straight.

There would then be no assault of religious freedom. There would be no cause for some to try and make a “federal case” by entrapping some preacher in the cross hairs.

From the Cornfield, as a man, who happens to be married legally to another man (at least for the moment), there is middle ground. There is a path we can walk which gives respect for those who agree and those who disagree that all couples should be equal under the Constitution when it comes to state (which is secular) recognition of ones vow to love and to hold.