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OKG Newsletter

Letters to the Editor

‘Just asking'

Nathaniel Batchelder June 29th, 2011

The Rev. Steve Kern’s Commentary (“Counterpoint: Soul concern,” June 22, Oklahoma Gazette) restates the belief shared by his wife, Rep. Sally Kern, that homosexuality is the sin that will bring down America for having displeased God.

While I do not consider love between any two people a sin, nor do I believe that God intervenes for or against nations or individuals, I challenge anyone fearful of God’s wrath to ask whether LGBT issues are really God’s top concern.

What about America’s consumption of natural resources at rates far exceeding other developed and industrialized nations? The expanding environmental impact of human activity decimates other species and the balance of nature, which are God’s creations.

What about America’s ongoing foreign wars, which may have killed a million people in Iraq and Afghanistan, wounded an estimated 5 million and displaced millions more (killing 6,000 Americans and wounding some 50,000 more)? Few people still believe that these trillion-dollar wars were the right response following the 9/11 terrorist attacks. Surgical actions would have been more effective, less offensive, far less expensive and far less lethal.

What about America’s expanding wealthy class, while poverty grows and our middle class shrinks? In the 1950s and ’60s, America had the healthiest middle class in the world, and one wage-earner could support a family. Since then, the numbers of American billionaires has grown from fewer than 20 to more than 400. These changes are the result of national policies. But are the policies and the results pleasing to God?

Perhaps the mind and concerns of God are larger than Steve and Sally Kern can imagine. I’m just asking.

—Nathaniel Batchelder Oklahoma City

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06.29.2011 at 11:39 Reply

I must agree that there are many other more important things for the world to worry about that gay marriage, and all of what you list are certainly more important. 

Unfortunately, Steve and Sally take the tact that Fred Phelps takes.  The notion that societies acceptence of homosexuals causes the destruction of that society.  So it begs the question they Steve and Sally haven't started carrying the inflamatory signs reading "God Hates Fags."  Surely this is what they believe.

But the obvious conclusion is that if God was capable of creating everything, and he did actually "hate", then he would have it in his ability to instantly destroy those he hates.  So it would seem to be a stretch for any earth born being to profess to know the will of God.

Ultimately I am perpelxed by how society focuses on homosexual sex as if it defines them.  No one goes around thinking about the things their heterosexual friends do in the bedroom, so why the fixation on homosexuals?  If anything I'd say those who spend that kind of time thinking about those sex acts have questionable sexualities themselves.  While I'm not so bold to call them cloested, I wouldn't be surprised if they are curious.


06.29.2011 at 12:01 Reply

i'm far from an economic expert/talking head but i want to hypothesize on mr. batchelder's comment about the wealthy class's expansion.

maybe the wealthy class's expansion is happening because more people want to work, own/operate a business, work for a company, etc. it's called earning a living rather than living on the welfare system? that's usually what happens when people want to work, their wealth expands........





06.30.2011 at 08:50 Reply


I think it’s sad that the go-to assumption these days is that American’s don’t want to work.  It seems that accusing people of general laziness and welfare mooching is easier that wrapping our heads around the big picture.  Now, I’m not going to sit here and tell you that those people don’t exist, I know for a fact they do. 

Let’s consider population statistics first. 

The world population during the start of the industrial revolution was 1.65 Billion.

In 2010 the world population was 6.9 Billion.

In 2050 the world population is estimated to be 9.15 Billion.

Statistically speaking the upper, middle, and lower classes have had an equal ability to grow based on population expansion.  But a few factors which have determined why the wealthy and lower classes are expanding can be seen through common sense observation regarding the proliferation of capitalistic ideals.

Take a company like IBM for example.  This was a computing powerhouse which was founded in 1911, and an icon of corporate America.  It’s safe to say that 60 years ago every single product IBM manufactured was made in America.  This is not the case today.  So what happened?

In the last century we have become strong trading partners with nations which we hadn’t previously had relations with.  The most obvious of which is China.  As China began to embrace American’s need for cheap goods jobs which would have otherwise been American were lost to an overseas counterpart.

The second half of this equation is the rampant expansion of corporate America.  What I am about to discuss is something I am witnessing in my own company right now.

As what was once small private businesses became consumed or run out of business by their larger publicly traded rivals, a shift occurred which destroyed the human aspect of the business in lieu of higher profit.  The small business owner knew this staff, and treated them like a family.  The corporation came in, and immediately began looking for ways to make greater profit, and do so as quickly as possible.  This resulted in downsizing, and outsourcing, the human aspect of small business was replaced with a cold profit driven hierarchy. 

So on the investor side you saw those who bought into those corporations become wealthy as a result of this process.  But the flip side is that more people became unemployed or under employed, thus increasing the lower class and diminishing the middle. 

Again, I cannot stress this enough, I work for a company which was once a private family company, and is now part of a corporate entity.  Last year the corporation targeted long time staples of this branch, and just weeks ago we were politely informed that the company would eliminate 900 jobs by November, and those eliminated could apply for other openings.  The caveat being the pay cut they have to take to stay with the company.  These people are having their positions eliminated, and will be given a chance to apply for a similar job at a lower pay then they were previously making.  This is what corporate America does!

So there you have it.  We have an increasing population and a decrease in personal income as a result of globalization and capitalism.  I suspect that around the same time next year another round of terminations are going to come up, and my job will most likely be among them. 

I don’t consider myself lazy, I want to work.  But as more and more companies find means of eliminating jobs either with technology or outsourcing, you WILL see more and more people competing for fewer and fewer jobs.  This is why there are overwhelming demands on our social programs, not because we have lazy citizenry.

From a political stand point, this problem has been building for decades, and no one party is to blame.  Those with the finances to do so have manipulated every politician with their promises of wealth. 

The problem is systemic, and there is no cure.  There will come a point where the system will collapse on itself, and I expect to see world wide uprisings similar to the austerity protests we are currently seeing in Greece.  Every society has a breaking point, and I hope that American’s haven’t become so complacent that they are unwilling to resist this.