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6:14 am EDT        39°F (4°C) in South Rockwood, MI

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I return here tonight, some 61 days after my last update, simply because I don’t have the energy to do much else. Like I explained in my last update, I’ve been feeling very “meh” about keeping this blog up, but since I don’t feel like heading out to wash my rather filthy car tonight (I think I’ll save that for Saturday), here’s another entry.

I let the tenth anniversary of this section of my site pass by, on March 1, without an update or any fanfare. It’s pretty amazing how long I’ve been at this, more than a third of my life at this point; of course, I did disappear for over two years between November 2001 and late January 2004, and haven’t been heard from much in about the last year or so. I guess in a way, you can say that this section of my site has come full circle: the Michigan basketball team has gone from really sucky in my third post, to being in the NCAA Tournament field of 65 in this, my 494th post.

Despite having lost a great deal of the motivation for keeping this blog updated, I haven’t lost the propensity to take on controversial topics here. I intend to do that in two ways before I hit the sack tonight: first, I will expound upon a statement I made here on January 22, 2008 regarding an annoying behavioral tendency of so-called “fundamentalist ‘Christians’,” and second, I’ll say what I feel is being left unsaid about an alleged abduction and Amber Alert situation currently in the news here in metro Detroit.

You may recall that the aforementioned January 22, 2008 entry was essentially my response to a Kansas City-area woman named Brenda, who typed a bunch of Christofascist talking points and propaganda about homosexuality into my e-mail form and sent it my way. She came up with the idea that I needed to “truly meet a true christian person” [sic], and that the said “true christian person” needed to offer me “love and guidence” [sic] because I’m apparently “confused and scared.” You may also recall that I pointed out the following:

What this statement of “confusion,” and a later repeated use of it, represents is an attempt to belittle GLBT people as mental children, essentially. This is a manifestation of the “fundamentalist ‘Christian’” tendency to view everybody else as mental two-year-olds who they can scare like older siblings always try to do …

I promised to explain that further at a later date, but 14 months have since passed — until now. I can explain this behavioral tendency quite well, because as you probably know, I myself am an older sibling — some four years and eight months closer to gray hair and the nursing home than my sister — and I will admit that as a child, I was a textbook example of that kind of behavior.

The birth of a younger sibling is an event that can be quite traumatic for a previously only child, particularly if he/she is between roughly 3 and 7 (i.e., old enough to sense a change in his/her parents’ emotional attachment patterns, but still young enough where logic hasn’t developed enough to overcome the natural tendency toward self-centeredness). The parents quite naturally have to spend much of their time catering to the needs of the far more helpless newborn, and it can leave the older child bewildered, wondering what he/she could possibly have done to merit being forgotten by the very people he/she used to be able to depend on. (I know, I’m over-dramatizing it, but you know as well as I do that kids that age have a real flair for the dramatic.) The child often feels that there has been a massive power shift away from him/her, and toward his/her new sibling, because of all the attention the newborn requires.

One coping mechanism the older child tends to develop — and again, I was a textbook example here from maybe ages 5 to 9 — is to try to act as a sort of “third parent.” That is to say, by acting in a way that he/she believes will reinforce the parents’ discipline of the younger sibling, he/she thinks the parents will respond positively and that a power shift back toward him/her will result. Naturally, the parents and any outside observer see this as extremely pedantic, immature behavior, and it doesn’t lead to the kind of power shift the older sibling desires, to say the least.

Put so-called “fundamentalist ‘Christians’” in the position of the older sibling, and any of their favorite attack targets — gays, sexually active single women, and non-religious people, to name just three of many — in the position of the younger sibling, and you kinda get the idea of where I’m going here. They think that by constantly quoting two hand-picked verses in Leviticus, they’re somehow currying favor with God (the parent in this analogy); but just as parents don’t care for the “help” offered by their older child, God doesn’t appreciate the pedantic, annoying six-year-old behavior of so-called “Christians” on their pet topics.

Just as the six-year-old tends to try to scare his younger sibling with threats along the lines of “just wait until Dad gets home!”, so-called “fundamentalist ‘Christians’” seem to think they can scare us with threats and carefully selected Bible verses. The thing is, most of us aren’t the mental two-year-olds “Christians” would like to believe we are; we are able to think for ourselves, and we don’t appreciate fundamentalists’ constant efforts to belittle and dehumanize us. Ultimately, it is their behavior that destroys Christianity by turning everybody else off to it — not legalized abortion, or same-sex marriage, or any of the other canards they put out there.

Metro Detroit readers of this blog have probably been hearing all week about the Amber Alert issued for 15-year-old Justin Wainwright of Northville, MI, who was last seen Monday in Ohio and is believed to be in the company of 18-year-old Joshua Zohr. The media have reported the case as an abduction of Justin by Joshua, and have said that it is possible Justin is in “extreme danger,” but something doesn’t quite add up to me.

Typically, abductions fall into two categories: a non-custodial, though usually biological, parent essentially flipping the bird to family court and running off with a child, or a spurned lover, almost always male, kidnapping an almost always female partner as a form of abuse. It doesn’t exactly make sense that a 5’8”, 125-pound (173 cm, 57 kg) 18-year-old (Joshua’s reported height and weight) could drag a slightly larger 15-year-old, kicking and screaming, by force; usually, when teenage or older males are abducted, a group of abductors are working together, and the motive is usually ransom.

Here’s an entirely plausible scenario that the Wainwrights and/or Zohrs perhaps don’t want to admit: their sons are lovers and have agreed to run away together. The Wainwrights are known, through local media reports, to be the owners of a Novi, MI “fun park” (therefore, probably well-off) and to have sent Justin to Father Gabriel Richard High School in Ann Arbor (therefore, likely Catholic); so it wouldn’t be a terribly huge stretch of logic to assume they hold extremely conservative, anti-gay views, and that Justin felt the need to get away from that.

I’m not saying that this is beyond a shadow of a doubt what has happened here, but that it is a plausible idea that ought not be summarily ignored. The two families are claiming to have been gag-ordered by the police, and the cops aren’t saying a whole hell of a lot either, so all we have to go on at this point is speculation. Let us all hope Justin and Joshua do return safely to Michigan, whatever their motive for taking off might have been.

Well, it’s time for me to hit the sack. One more day of work, pulling a 12,000-gallon (45,425 L) bomb strapped to my back, and then it’s my weekend.