Interesting response

Discussion in 'News / Current Events' started by ReformedBaptist, Oct 28, 2010.

  1. ReformedBaptist

    ReformedBaptist
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    I guess I will start on the BB to get the word out.

    Anti-Christian bias on campus is normal. I have experienced it. But in this case I emailed this professor as an act of love. Now, I made the assumption that WND was reporting what happened. Perhaps not. Here was my email to the professor:

    My purpose in the email was to show love to him. Based on the WND article, and it being publicized, I thought he was probably getting hate mail. And I wanted to share the Gospel with him and uphold the truth of Scripture.

    My next posts will be his reply.
     
  2. ReformedBaptist

    ReformedBaptist
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    Geoff…I think I may have sent you a draft of this while I was writing…my Outlook has been acting funny so I apologize. This is my response to your email…

    I haven’t read very many of these and I’ll be honest, I don’t know why I read yours. So unlike the rest of the many folks who have written in to accuse me of hate crimes and tell me I am going to hell and accusing me terrorizing women and old people, you get a personal response.

    If you think that the reverend John Chisham is ANYTHING like Jesus, it only goes to show how little you actually know about the man. He comes on our campus and shouts at people, calling young women whores and prostitutes. One, my friend, a happily married woman with children, called a whore because she was wearing a sleeveless blouse. Does that sound like Jesus to you? Maybe you and I read different bibles. Yes Geoff. I read the bible. Last week in the Sunday school class I teach we covered Abram’s being given the name Abraham by God. I am a Lutheran, Geoff. Not an atheist or a Christian hater or anti-Christian. In fact, Geoff, the youngest two of my five children go to a private Lutheran school. Oh what’s that? You thought I was gay? Well there is a lot you don’t know. The author of the WND piece, Brian Fitzpatrick, knew but he would rather tell you a good story than tell you the truth. Isn’t there something in the bible about listening to those who would lie to you and deceive you?

    Well the truth is there for those who seek it, Geoff. So instead of swallowing Fitzpatrick’s garbage with an uncritical gulp, go out and find it.

    Email Chisham and ask him whether or not the man you call “Christ-like” condemns Catholics and Lutherans. Ask him how he can condemn other Christians and I am the Christian hater. Yeah. I know, Geoff. I am still trying to figure it out too. How did I get portrayed as the anti-Christian when he is out condemning other Christians? It’s almost like the story you read on WND is a fiction. But you go ahead and suck it up. Believe every word because it is easier to believe that wild-eyed leftist professor hates Christians that to believe that a you’re on the side of a hate monger.

    You probably don’t believe me. I know. Chisham being like Christ and all. Well I tell you what Geoff, why don’t you use your computer to find some other groups on my campus – we’ve got several Christian groups and clubs – and you ask them if I have ever protested them or come into their services or if they have ever attracted counter demonstrations of any kind. The answer, Geoff, is that they haven’t. Not one. Not once in the nine years I have been here. But Chisham gets counter demonstrations EVERY time he comes to campus. So what’s the common denominator? Christianity? Or Chisham?

    The truth is right there for you to find. Maybe God wants me to answer your letter so that you can email the Maranatha Christian Fellowship ([email protected]) and ask them if they’ve ever been counter demonstrated. I may not agree with him but he has never been a disrespectful douche bag. That’s why he doesn’t get counter demonstrations.

    Chisham isn’t like Christ. He’s a jerk.

    Geoff…did you know I have been published in Modern Age twice? Look up Modern Age. You have the internet. You’ll see that it is a very conservative social and political journal. I have been published in it twice Geoff. Brian Fitzpatrick, the guy who wrote the WND piece you read, well he knows because I told him. So you got to ask yourself, Geoff: why would he leave that part out? Why would he leave out things like that? Because Fitzpatrick isn’t interested in the truth. He is interested in a good story and I get to be his boogie man.

    Geoff, I am attaching the full email interview I gave to Fitzpatrick. You’re so concerned about me…read it. You see if he didn’t twist facts and cherry pick quotes.

    Pray for me all you want Geoff. But please don’t contact me again. I am blocking you from my email so I won’t get your response.
     
  3. ReformedBaptist

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    Apparantly the professor agreed to an email interview.

    My email interview with Fitzpatrick:

    From: Dimock, James P

    Sent: Monday, October 25, 2010 7:02 PM

    To: '[email protected]'

    Subject: RE: Protests against pastor on campus and in Marshall, Minnesota



    Brian,



    Thank you for your interest. I am very pleased to see that WND is interested in getting my point of view. I have been advised to make it clear that my opinions are my own and are not those of the University. I do not speak for the University or anyone else.



    1) The minister, John Chisham, has told me that you led the protest in Marshall, and also have shouted him down when he has preached on campus. He adds that you called him "Pastor Douchebag." Is any of this true? I'd like to hear your side.



    There was a protest in Marshall. I have shouted him down when he preached on campus although I think "preached" is a mischaracterization. Chisham, who also goes by "John The Baptist" attempts to draw crowds and create controversy. He carries a sign condemning women, feminists, and many others. He speaks out actively not only against members of the LGBT community but also Jews, Muslims and people he refers to as "so-called Christians" which includes Catholics and Lutherans. I have no doubt that Chisham presents himself to you as a good and god-fearing Christian who did nothing more than come to campus and try to spread the word of God. That is not a accurate portrait of his activities here on campus.



    I urge you to contact the Maranatha Christian Fellowship ([email protected]). The Pastor who leads that group has often stood out on our campus mall preaching. He has, to my knowledge, never generated angry counter protests. I have never attempted to shout him down. I have never written a letter about him. In fact, we have many Christian groups on campus. None of them have had counter protests. Every time Chisham comes to our campus, he encounters counter protests. I am sure that he would like people to believe that he is attacked because he is Christian. It isn't. It is because of what he says and does. Other Christians don't get protested ... so why Chisham? Logically, if other Christians don't draw protests, then it isn't simply Chisham's Christianity that brings out protesters.



    Chisham has, in a recent letter to the editor and complaints to our administration, charged that I am anti-Christian. In nine years at this institution, I have never had a complaint that I am anti-Christian and not one complaint that I have discriminated against Christians. My alleged anti-Christian bias would surprise my Sunday school class.



    I know Chisham has said I am anti-Christian. Really? He condemns Catholics and Lutherans and I am the one who is anti-Christian? Unless you read the Bible the same way he does, he says you aren't a Christian at all? And I am anti-Christian?



    I am not anti-Christian although I am anti-Chisham. I admit I called him a douche bag because I don't like him. I sometimes have a foul mouth which I admit is a character flaw. I have never claimed to be without sin. I have also called him a Pharisee, a narcissist, and hate monger. I have accused him of seeking out attention and self-glorification. He sought you out to do a story about him ... what's that tell you?



    2) Were you present at the protest against Pastor John Chisham in Marshall, Minnesota?



    Yes I was. I have a constitutionally protected right to free speech. I violated no law or policy.



    3) Were you the leader? If not, who was the leader, and why did you attend?



    No I was not the leader. Although Chisham has told you I was the leader, told the University Administration I was the leader, and characterized me as the leader in his letter to the editor of the campus paper, I was very clear that I was not the leader of the protest. In fact, I told a very angry woman I later learned was Chisham's wife, no less than twice that I was not the leader. You can confirm this by contacting the YMCA supervisor on duty at the time of the protest (Chisham's church services are held in a YMCA conference room) who's name is also John (sorry, I don't have his last name) he can probably be reached at the Marshall YMCA (507) 532-9622.



    Why did I attend?



    I was asked to assist in the demonstration because I have experience with demonstration and protest. I have both practical and theoretical expertise in this area. You can see my published writings on this subject in the Proceedings of the Alta Conference on Argumentation 2009. If you have any trouble finding a copy of the article, I would be happy to send it to you. Specifically, I was asked to be a liaison between protesters and the YMCA and the police if necessary. This was done both because of my experience and in order to free up the protest organizer XXXXX and to allow her to focus on the actual organization of the protesters. I helped write and sent out press releases.



    I attended because Chisham is a hate monger and a Pharisee. I wish that more groups would have attended the protest and that it was not just members of the LGBT community. His vicious rhetoric ranges far wider than the LGBT community.



    4) Was this a class project?



    Not for my class. No one at the protest is now or ever has been a student in any of my classes.



    5) Was this an activity of an MSU student organization?



    I didn't organize the event or do any of the planning. I drove a car and took pictures. I have no direct knowledge of the degree of support, if any, from any official student organization.



    6) Is this the type of thing you do normally with your classes?



    This is a leading question which assumes that this was, in fact, a class project. So I will repeat my response to question four: It was not a class project. No one was required to go by me or anyone else.



    Because I teach courses in public discourse, I often suggest students attend public lectures and discussions and even protests. I also have suggested my students attend sessions explaining and advocating intelligent design which are scheduled this week on our campus. I have never required students to participate in any activity which runs counter to their values. I did not inform any of my students in any of my classes about this protest or my intention to attend. I didn't encourage anyone to go.



    7) What were you trying to accomplish with the protest?



    Chisham disrupts our campus and attacks people who have done nothing to deserve his bile and filth. I stand on my statements that he is a Pharisee. You are welcome to read my letter to the editor published in the MSU Reporter on September 30th. Since it was not my protest, I will not speak to the goals of everyone involved but my goals were first to counter the hate speech of John Chisham, second to make sure his congregation was aware of the sorts of things he was up to on our campus (the nice man I talked to after the service agreed with me that Chisham's sign - it is posted on the website of the MSU Reporter back in October of 2009 and a really good picture appears on the webpage of the University of South Dakota paper, The Volant - is offensive and sent the wrong message about Christianity; Chisham's wife insisted that Chisham never called women "whores" or "prostitutes" but he has), third and finally I wanted to be there to give protesters the benefit of my experience and make sure things did not get out of hand.
     
  4. ReformedBaptist

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    8) Did you use your signs to block the congregation's view of the pastor, or the crowd's view when he preaches on campus? How does this fit in with the "ethics of argumentation" you teach in your classes?



    I never held a sign either at his preaching on campus or at the demonstration. You can see from the attached photograph (NOTE TO THE PEOPLE I SENT THIS TO AFTER BRIAN – I AM NOT FORWARDING THE PHOTO. THE PHOTO YOU SEE ON WND IS TAKEN AT CHEST LEVEL; THE WOMAN WHOSE FACE YOU SEE IS SEATED. CHISHAM WAS NEVER BLOCKED BY FROM VIEW) that the protesters in his church stood silently. They did not stop him from speaking. They did not block anyone's view. I am not holding a sign. I am holding the camera.



    If you are interested in my perspective on ethics and argumentation, you should look at my published work on the subject. It is simply not possible to condense my position on ethics and argumentation into an email. I have an paper presented at the National Communication Association in 2008 which you can access online (if you have any trouble, let me know and I'll send you a copy) and I have two articles in Modern Age (which, as I am sure you know, is a highly respected and very conservative journal of social and political thought). Again, these are available on line but if you have any trouble let me know. I am not trying to be a jerk about my record of publication ... but you are asking complex questions that are far better answered by my scholarship. Suffice it to say that I don't believe that protest or demonstration are inconsistent with ethical argumentation. You are free to peruse my writings to see if you can find any inconsistency.



    It is also important to point out that while Chisham would like to convey the idea that a group of disrespectful students stormed into his church uninvited, that is not the whole story. Chisham posts and open invitation to people to come to his worship service (http://www.riveroflifealliance.com/ ). So although the protesters didn’t have a "right" to come to his church, they had an invitation to come, one that Chisham was free to rescind at any time and chose not to. In fact at one of the three occasions when Chisham’s wife (I do apologize for calling her that...I don't know her name) was yelling at me, he specifically told her that invited us and we were welcome. When John the supervisor on duty at the YMCA at the time – I understand the confusion two John’s may cause…I will try to be very clear - entered the conference room to ask protesters to sit down, John Chisham waved John the YMCA supervisor off thus explicitly giving protesters permission to stand with signs during the service. Outside, after the service, John Chisham confirmed to the police that he waved John the YMCA supervisor off, that he could have asked the protestors to put down signs and that he refrained from doing so and he agreed that this constituted his permission to hold up signs. Moreover, he repeated his invitation and told protesters they were welcome to return although he did ask that in the future they do not bring signs into the service. He was, in my opinion, equivocal on whether or not they would be required to sit.



    This can all be confirmed by John, the YMCA supervisor on duty. I have already given you his number. It was also said in the presence of the Marshall police department, (507) 532-3258. The police, who responded to a false report of demonstrators making a disturbance (that no disturbance was taking place was confirmed by both John Chisham and John the YMCA supervisor), took a report which included John Chisham’s invitation to return to his church and his permission to hold signs during the service.



    It is also important to note that no one was at any time asked to leave. No one refused any request by John Chisham or by the YMCA or the police. The police issued no summons, did not ask anyone to cease or desist any activity in which they were engaged. The police didn't even take names. No protester violated any policy or refused any request.



    9) Have you participated in shouting down the pastor when he preaches at Mankato? How does this fit with the ethics of argumentation?



    See my above statement about ethics of argument. I would only add that I have done nothing to prevent Chisham from speaking on campus. Speaking in public invites response. In fact I think Chisham's record is pretty clear that he seeks out responses from people like me. The few minutes I spent shouting my opinion loud enough to overwhelm his doesn't nullify the time he spends speaking. He gets ample time to have his say.



    10) Why did the protesters remain silent at the church service?



    You would have to ask them. Because I was not involved in the planning of the protest and not in the room at the time they decided to enter, I can't speak to their motives. It is a bit of a loaded question though, don't you think? If they had shouted and were loud surely that would be grounds to condemn their protest even more. They never interrupted the speaker or prevented him from speaking during his service. It was a silent protest. Most of the demonstrators held signs giving the names of young men and women who have committed suicide as a result of anti-gay/lesbian bullying.



    11) Why didn't the protesters perform "public displays of affection" at the church service, as is often done by LGBT protesters?



    Again, this seems like a really loaded kind of question. Short answer is that I don't know. I personally didn't kiss anyone because my wife did not attend this protest and I am not inclined to kiss people who are not my wife. I can't really speak for anyone else.



    So, Brian...I am sure that you are getting this vision of me as a wild-eyed liberal crazy who invaded this man's church and harassed his poor family. That is apparently what he writes in to the paper here. I haven't read his letter but I can't get people to stop trying to tell me about it. I have to tell you, however, that it isn't that simple. Yes, I am very leftist in my social and political and economic beliefs. But I also publish in very conservative journals. I am probably one of the foremost scholars on the work of Richard M. Weaver who has been called America's only truly conservative philosophers. Only Russell Kirk had more influence over the development of classical conservative thought. I am a Lutheran and I go to a pretty conservative church. I freely admit I am not orthodox. I disagree with my church on several questions of fact which I believe are distinct from articles of faith. I am not telling you this to brag about my accomplishments or blow my own horn. I only want you to know that if the story you decide to run with is about some crazy leftist freak out to attack Christians for no reason at all...well you should know that is a pretty narrow and unfair portrait of me.



    Chisham is not some poor beleaguered Christian being unfairly attacked by a radical leftist. He is one step this side of Fred Phelps and he spends as much of his time attacking other Christians as he does attacking gays and lesbians and feminists. I am familiar with WND. I know your politics. A lot of people in my position would have simply refused your request for an interview. I am pretty sure that "wild leftist professor forces students to disrupt church - uses classroom as recruiting center for gay rights activists" is a better story than the truth. I am sure it is a lot more fun to write about liberals running amok on campus but if you're interested in being a journalist, I would encourage you to get a hold of the YMCA and the Marshall Police Department. Talk to other religious groups on our campus. See which version of events rings true.



    I hope this answers your questions. Good luck on your story.



    Sincerely,



    James P. Dimock



    The above letter is my own opinion. I am not writing as representative of the University.
     
  5. Jon-Marc

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    The only thing responsible for anyone committing suicide is guilt or the feeling of despair and hopelessness. They can find hope through Jesus the Christ. Homosexuality is sin and needs to preached against publicly.

    Unfortunately, with laws being passed making it a hate crime, you can be arrested for preaching the truth. If a person feels guilt about their sin, repenting and turning to Christ will solve that problem rather than committing suicide. Spending eternity separated from God after dying in one's sins won't take away their pain.
     
  6. annsni

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    It is interesting when you hear another side of the story. I don't count WND as a very reputable source of news because it's obvious that they have their own bent to things just like most places reporting news. I think the e-mails are very interesting. Thanks for sharing them.
     
  7. Aaron

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    First, the Prof strikes me as incredibly childish in his response to the pastor and in his email to you. (Blocked from his email so he can't see your response??? Puh-LEEEEEZE!) Second, I have seen the kind of evangelist he described on campus in my college days. A lot of whoopin' and hollerin' and then it's over. No more disruptive than the student protests of conservative actions and values. Third, I will not for one moment bemoan an article biased against a liberal college prof.
     
  8. ReformedBaptist

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    I think one mistake I made was assuming the integrity of the author of the article of WND. I am not a journalist. But I did "train" for it with my undergraduate degree. The article could have included a little more about the liberal professor.

    I ran into libs like this professor on campus. Those who claim to be Chrisitans and justify their moral liberalism under the guise of political viewpoints. And I agree, this professor was being infantile in blocking my response.

    It was a good learning experience.
     
  9. Steven2006

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    I am not sure it is appropriate to post personal e-mails on a public board. It might not even be legal.
     

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