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December 14, 2018

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Couple of things need to be addressed with your article.
1, You are completely off base to compare the KKK to the church in your example of doing business. If you want a radical group that does business with the public and as you said "Well, sure, people are free in believe in whatever crazy thing they want to. But usually it isn't so obvious that the crazy people are running a business aimed at attracting the general public -- most of whom don't believe in the crazy ideas held by the crazy people." All you have to do is look to Planned Parenthood, which historically has more in common with the KKK then the church, seeing as they were founded and operated to exterminate black children in the womb. Now if that is "crazy" then what is?
2, you need to understand that to believe that something is a sin does not equal hatred and/or malice towards the sinner. As Christians we believe that all mankind in sinful and in need of a savior. Homosexuality is meerly one of many sins that our world is becoming more and more accustomed to.
I do not attend Salem alliance Church but I believe that they and the Pastor are simply teaching the truth of the Bible and that they have no hatred towards any homosexual, but rather a desire to seem all man come to a saving faith in God.
I'd encourage you dear sir to report the facts and seek the truth rather then to make assumptions and accusations about this.

Nathan, there's no demonstrable proof that God exists. The Bible is man-made, not God-made. So there go your arguments. Better luck next time. Try reason, evidence, and facts, not religious dogma. Being attracted to the same sex is biological, almost certainly, not a choice. So it is indeed like being African-American, which also is biological, not a choice.

Brian, So for you to say theirs NO proof of God's existence, is like you have proof of the contrary. Let me assume, you believe something...all things come from nothing? So, you believe that a big bang happened and from chaos came order? Take a Rolex Brian, take this time piece and all its parts and pieces; shake it for a million, billion years. Will it become a perfect time piece? No Brian, it will not. Show me your demonstrable proof, your absolutes and I will show you mine.

Nate, I've had an active Church of the Churchless blog for 14 years, so I've a lot of experience dealing with religious people who make thinking/reasoning errors. Which now includes you. You can check out my arguments for why you're wrong by going to this link and doing some searches about "existence God" or such by using the search box in the right sidebar.

https://hinessight.blogs.com/church_of_the_churchless/

Briefly, in both science and everyday life it usually is impossible to prove a negative. It is up to the person making a positive claim to provide solid evidence for that claim. Let's say that I claim that it is invisible fairies who are making the flowers grow in our yard. Can you provide proof to me that the fairies don't exist? Remember, they are invisible and show no signs other than the flowers growing.

No, you couldn't. You''d just tell me, correctly, "Brian, you're crazy. There's no proof of the fairies, so they must be just in your mind." Which is exactly how us atheists view God: as a crazy idea that only exists in the minds of believers.

Regarding your watch analogy, this has been thoroughly disproven by modern knowledge of how evolution works. There's even a book, I believe the title is "The Blind Watchmaker," that discusses how evolution/natural selection produces the complexity of life from simple principles without the need of a designer God.

So try again, Nate. I know you can't provide demonstrable proof of God's existence, and that you believe on faith. Just accept this is the case. And understand that it is perfectly reasonable for people who don't support the Salem Alliance Church's teachings to boycott businesses of the church that funnel money into the church coffers.

The comment about homosexuality being a sin and Christians don’t hate the sinner, just the sin... well although I don’t agree with you about this, I do agree that none of us are without “sin”. But let me ask you this, why does my sin allow me to qualify to work at Broadway Commons and the “sin” of homosexuality disqualify someone to work at Broadway Commons? Makes you wonder if we are categorizing “sin” if indeed old biases and hatred are not part of this then what do you attribute the ranking of “sins” to be about? Just curious...


Sexual behavior seems pretty bestial to me no matter who is doing what to/with whom, not that such bestial behavior isn't enjoyable or normal.

If God put all the pieces of the Cosmic Rolex together in such a way that this passion and desire for sex is built into all creatures, then it is natural. It makes sense to me that such a strong mechanism would sometimes transfer to members of the same sex. I doubt the Creator can blame LGBTs for what It created.

Besides, wouldn't it be a pain in the Cosmic Butt to have to keep tabs on all the trillions upon trillions of bestial acts performed by the trillions upon trillions of sinners in the universe every moment? (You know we are not alone don't you?)

Does God really care if a couple of ziods on the planet Xyret are having gay sex or not? Maybe gay sex is the norm there and marriage is considered sick according to the God-given holy tenets of their world. Christ was re-born there as a gay woman you know.

God's got to be too busy administering to the functioning of black holes (no, not that kind) or the dissolution of Galaxy 237b to be concerned with such trivial matters.

Why would God set things up so that It has to be pissed off about what It created and punish the creation for doing what It created? That God would be a pretty neurotic and conflicted character.

Religious folk might consider taking more of an expanded view and leave the confines of stunted, relative, superstitious belief behind.

We come from It, are It, and go back to It. It's all good in the vastness of Infinity.

Broadway Coffeehouse was built as an inclusive gathering place for anyone and everyone and operates as a business/ministry of Salem Alliance Church located in the Broadway Commons building.

We believe everyone is created in God’s image with inestimable worth, and therefore, we seek to treat every individual, even those with whom we might disagree, with dignity and respect. It is with this mission that we operate Broadway Coffeehouse. While we intentionally hire followers of Jesus at Broadway Coffeehouse, it has not been our practice to ask sexual orientation questions during the hiring process.

We have not sought to use Broadway Coffeehouse as a religious platform. Instead, we strive to demonstrate a welcoming spirit and provide exceptional service to everyone in our diverse community. We love our community and we work hard to be good neighbors, open to all who visit our church, use our facilities or stop by for coffee as we serve our city following Christ’s example.

If you have further questions, feel free to reach out directly to management at [email protected]

" 19 For the wisdom of this world is foolishness with God. For it is written, He taketh the wise in their own craftiness. 20 And again, The Lord knoweth the thoughts of the wise, that they are vain. 21 Therefore let no man glory in men.
1st Corinthians 3, 19 - 21
Brian; you stand corrected!

Jesus did not write Corinthians. They are letters from Paul, dealing with specific oroblems within specific churches. Advice for settling differences between membersof the congregation, not to be misconstrued as a blanket condemnation of all human wisdom. God gave you s brain, so use it or you will be gulty of hiding your talents, as in the parable.Jesus set the example of loving others as ourselves. He did not say "except for homosexuals". He treated tax collectors, lepers, and prostitutes with respect. Why would he he exclude gay folk? Tired of your bigoted twisting of the Bibke. I have read it from cover to cover. Have you?
Most of the casting of a bad light on homosexuality came from the Old Testament. And with good reason. People were so xenophobic that they would drag foreign guests from ther hosts' home and sodomize them. Jesus made it plain that the laws if the Old Testament no longer applied and his new law was the golden rule. The world would be a better place if you so-called Christians would stop behaving like Pharisees, condemning and judging. Get on board with Jesus' love and respect for other people.

Okay I’m queer and I’ve spent most of my life in Salem. I worship God and am In a healthy relationship with me girlfriend of almost 2 years. I DARE one of y’all to come to my face and tell me I’m a sinner

Talon, your three line comment is the best summary of this issue I've seen so far. Beautiful. You hit the nail on the head. The judgmental members of the Salem Alliance Church sit and listen to sermons that rail on about the sinfulness of same-sex sex.

But they won't go on camera about this, refusing a KATU reporter's request to do so. They won't answer questions from that reporter about their hiring practices at the Broadway Coffee House. I know, because I've seen the emails. So far they haven't answered my questions, which I shared in a comment on my first post about this subject, which I'll share below.

So these cowardly Christians are fine with condemning same-sex sex in the privacy of their church, but they seem to be ashamed of being upfront with their sinful judgementalism. I'm sure they would never condemn you to your face, because they don't have the guts -- and because they know that most people in Salem are fine with same-sex marriages, same-sex relationships, and same-sex sex. See:

https://hinessight.blogs.com/salempoliticalsnark/2018/12/two-reports-of-how-broadway-coffee-house-discriminates-against-lgbt-people.html

Here's my email that I sent to the Coffee House manager. Like I said, so far the response has been silence.
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I followed up on Luke's offer above to answer questions. Here's my email message to Luke:
-----------------------------------
Luke, thanks for your comment on my blog post about Salem Alliance Church. I do have a few questions.

(1) Since the Broadway Coffee House is part of Salem Alliance Church, I’ve been told that money raised by the Coffee House, and by Broadway Commons in general, goes in the church’s financial accounts. I assume this is correct, but would appreciate confirmation of this. In other words, if I buy a latte at the Coffee House, which I’ve done numerous times, does the profit from that purchase go to support church operations?

(2) You said you don’t ask about sexual orientation during the hiring process for Coffee House staff. But as unlikely as this may be, let’s imagine this scenario: a “follower of Jesus,” as you put it, applies for a job. In the course of the interview this person says, “Wanted to let you know that I’m gay, and I’m married in a same-sex marriage.” Would they be hired if they were otherwise qualified?

As you read on my first blog post about this issue that you commented on, this is what someone reported to me:

"The pastor told me that the baristas are church staff and have to be employees of the church and follow church rules to work there . He also said that they do not need to follow non discrimination laws because they are an outreach ministry...not a licensed business. I think the general public should know this."

(3) So another question is, is what this person said true? Namely do baristas have to be church staff? Do they have to follow church rules to work there? I ask this because my second post is about the lead pastor at Salem Alliance Church saying that same-sex sex is a sin, and it needs to be given up by church members.

Thus I’m wondering if the Coffee House would hire someone who is openly gay, is in a same-sex marriage, and is having same-sex sex within that marriage. Let’s assume they are a member of the Salem Alliance Church. They just choose to ignore that rule about same-sex sex set down by the pastor, because it doesn’t make sense to them.

I look forward to your responses. I’ll share those responses unedited on my blog.

— Brian

Bertrand Russell on Religion:

"Many orthodox people speak as though it were the business of sceptics to disprove received dogmas rather than of dogmatists to prove them. This is, of course, a mistake. If I were to suggest that between the Earth and Mars there is a china teapot revolving about the sun in an elliptical orbit, nobody would be able to disprove my assertion provided I were careful to add that the teapot is too small to be revealed even by our most powerful telescopes. But if I were to go on to say that, since my assertion cannot be disproved, it is intolerable presumption on the part of human reason to doubt it, I should rightly be thought to be talking nonsense. If, however, the existence of such a teapot were affirmed in ancient books, taught as the sacred truth every Sunday, and instilled into the minds of children at school, hesitation to believe in its existence would become a mark of eccentricity and entitle the doubter to the attentions of the psychiatrist in an enlightened age or of the Inquisitor in an earlier time."

Ah, religion. The swamp that political swamps aspire to be.

Jack, your argument is lacking. The evidence that Christians use to prove their point is the Bible. Example: All people came from two people who were created by God. If you reject that evidence, fine, you reject the evidence we know to be true from the Bible. Yet I humbly ask, If you do not believe the Bible, what are you afraid is going to happen that you are so concerned about us? Or better question, what are you afraid is going to happen to you because we believe the evidence revealed in the Bible? When Bible believers talk with certainty that we will live forever with God because of Jesus, we are talking about life after death and our evidence is the Bible. You can read the Bible for yourself to confirm, with clear evidence from the Bible, that is what it reveals and what we believe. Yet, it is true that this is a matter of faith. Now, since life after death is a matter of one's faith, you can either come to believe it as you are empowered, or you can reject it. Our country has a special document called the Constitution. in it, we all have Freedom to believe the Bible or the Freedom not to believe the Bible. We will all die. Why? The wages of Sin is death. We all die because we are all sinners. But, the gift of God is eternal life in Jesus. I believe this and my evidence is the Bible.

Very nicely written, Craig!
I believe this and my evidence is the Bible and for the may blessings unfolding daily in our lives.
Thank you and Merry Christmas!

Craig, you point to the Bible as evidence. However, that is absolutely not evidence. They are words written by a person(s) millennia ago about what they think. Not evidence. You can certainly point to the Bible as your reason for believing what you believe and making a point about something, there’s no inherent problem there, but that does not mean it is evidence (hence why atheists make the point that there is no demonstrable evidence pointing to the existence of God, while there is ample evidence supporting evolution and dinosaurs and such, which pretty directly contradict creationism).

In response to your question about fear- the fear (at least in my opinion) is related to social progress. With Christianity, we will be unable to progress socially to a state where people are not prosecuted based on gender, sexuality, race, etc. It, along with other religions, stand directly in the way of that. What I fear is a Handmaid’s Tale state where the Religious Right take power and throw us hundreds of years into the past preventing us from reaching social equanimity.

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