Thursday, June 09, 2005

Magpie Watch IV

Commenter arrScott notes that Andrew Sullivan's exploration of Jesus Christ and family values is heavily drawn from Julia Sweeney's monologue on This American Life, which aired, coincidentally, on NPR last weekend. Here's Sweeney on This American Life:
I have to say the most upsetting thing to me about Jesus is his family values. Which is amazing when you think how there's so many groups out there who say they base their family values on the Bible. I mean he seems to have no real close ties to his parents. He puts Mary off cruelly over and over again. . . . Jesus actually discourages any contact his converts have with their own families. He himself does not marry or have children. And he explicitly tells his followers not to have families as well and if they do, they should just abandon them. . . . So that's the New Testament family values for you.

And here's Sullivan from yesterday:
And yet, when you read the Gospels, you find something very strange. Jesus barely mentions marriage. He never married. He demanded of all his disciples that they abandon their own families and wives, without even saying goodbye. He was openly contemptuous toward his own mother and father in adolescence and early adulthood. His fundamental response to adultery was forgiveness of the adulterer and suspicion of the morally superior. His contemporaries must have regarded him as illegitimate, since he was conceived out of wedlock. So this illegitimate, single man who broke up family after family, whose closest female friend was a childless former prostitute, who scandalously stayed alone in the home of two unmarried women, who offended every family value of the time ... has been turned into the chief architect of "family values!"

As we've seen before (and before that and before that and before that), Andrew Sullivan has made a habit of this sort of thing. It isn't plagiarism. But shouldn't the former editor of The New Republic know better?

3 comments:

Al said...

"But shouldn't the former editor of The New Republic know better?"

Don't you mean, "But shouldn't the former editor of The New Republic who hired Stephen Glass know better"?

Anonymous said...

It's ironic that the blogger who demands answers from everyone he attacks refuses to ever answer his own critics. I'm not talking about engaging in debate, which he is quite good at, I'm referring to the instances where Sullivan refuses to acknowledge that he inadvertantly referenced something that was not his idea without giving credit where it is due. I always thought it was funny that he "retired" earlier this year because blogging was too hard. Now most everyone saw this for the ploy it was: a feel-good "we love you andrew, don't goooooo!!!!" fundraiser. But honestly, how effing hard is blogging a few times a day? If you think that is a hard job, you are lazy. And this is my main point: Sullivan isn't a plagiarist, he's just lazy. He here's something then repeats it as his own, sometimes slightly changed. It's intellectual laziness.

Anonymous said...

It's ironic that the blogger who demands answers from everyone he attacks refuses to ever answer his own critics. I'm not talking about engaging in debate, which he is quite good at, I'm referring to the instances where Sullivan refuses to acknowledge that he inadvertantly referenced something that was not his idea without giving credit where it is due. I always thought it was funny that he "retired" earlier this year because blogging was too hard. Now most everyone saw this for the ploy it was: a feel-good "we love you andrew, don't goooooo!!!!" fundraiser. But honestly, how effing hard is blogging a few times a day? If you think that is a hard job, you are lazy. And this is my main point: Sullivan isn't a plagiarist, he's just lazy. He hears something then repeats it as his own, sometimes slightly changed. It's intellectual laziness.