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Uproar Over Pilot's In-Flight Religion Comments
foxnews.com/AP ^ | 2/8/2004

Posted on 02/09/2004 11:06:18 AM PST by Born Conservative

Edited on 04/22/2004 12:38:58 AM PDT by Jim Robinson. [history]

NEW YORK An American Airlines (search) pilot asked Christians on his flight to identify themselves and suggested the non-Christians discuss the faith with them, the airline said.

The case was handed over to the airline's personnel department for an investigation, spokesman Tim Wagner (search) said Sunday.


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TOPICS: Culture/Society; News/Current Events
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1 posted on 02/09/2004 11:06:21 AM PST by Born Conservative
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To: Born Conservative
I would have responded by raising my hand.

(Although it would have had a single finger extended........)

2 posted on 02/09/2004 11:11:15 AM PST by gdani (Have you played Atari today?)
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To: Born Conservative
If a "free beer" clause was included with such instruction, I would've been all over it.
3 posted on 02/09/2004 11:12:51 AM PST by sirshackleton
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To: gdani
There is an appropriate time and appropriate place for this discussion; unfortunately, this wasn't it.
4 posted on 02/09/2004 11:12:57 AM PST by Born Conservative ("Forgive your enemies, but never forget their names" - John F. Kennedy)
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Related threads

Pilot suggested passengers discuss Christianity during LA-to-New York flight 2/7/04 547 comments

Airline pilot asked Christians to share their faith with other passengers2/8/2004 47 comments
5 posted on 02/09/2004 11:13:10 AM PST by george wythe
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To: gdani
Good Grief. For once I agree with you. (But I wouldn't have been that rude)
6 posted on 02/09/2004 11:13:10 AM PST by OpusatFR (Seach Google for your screen name. Get a surprise!)
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To: Born Conservative
There is an appropriate time and appropriate place for this discussion; unfortunately, this wasn't it.

Agreed.

7 posted on 02/09/2004 11:13:49 AM PST by gdani (Have you played Atari today?)
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To: Born Conservative
Fascinating. Now, suppose the pilot were a Buddhist or a Hindu (we have lots of both here in the USA). I wonder if reaction would be different.

I'm an atheist, and I didn't come by my atheism by being ignorant of Christian teachings. I don't need or want to be proselytized while travelling on an airliner, where I am a captive audience.

This pilot should confine his preaching to some venue where people are not required to be.

Now, I don't think he should get fired or anything, but I'll bet this never happens again. American Airlines has lots and lots of passengers who are not Christians. I doubt they would like to lose their business.
8 posted on 02/09/2004 11:14:54 AM PST by MineralMan (godless atheist)
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To: Born Conservative
Pilot Rodger Findiesen of Annapolis, Md., then invited others to talk with these passengers about their religious beliefs during the 4 1/2-hour cross-country flight on Friday, spokesman Tim Wagner said.

Findiesen had recently visited a Christian mission in Costa Rica, Wagner said.

"I guess he was moved by the experience and wanted to share his emotions," he said......

Findiesen declined to comment Saturday. "I can't speak to you," he said. "My wife is here, and she's very upset."

This is from an article in yesterday's Fort Worth Star Telegram.

9 posted on 02/09/2004 11:20:07 AM PST by sinkspur (Adopt a shelter dog or cat! You'll save one life, and maybe two!)
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To: sinkspur
Is that the only article in which the pilot is identified?
10 posted on 02/09/2004 11:23:58 AM PST by Stone Mountain
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To: Stone Mountain
The only one I've read. It's from the LA Times, which is why I only posted the link. The Star-Telegram just picked it up.
11 posted on 02/09/2004 11:26:14 AM PST by sinkspur (Adopt a shelter dog or cat! You'll save one life, and maybe two!)
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To: george wythe
Here we go again!
12 posted on 02/09/2004 11:29:01 AM PST by HairOfTheDog
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To: george wythe
Thanks for posting the related threads. Whenever I post, I do a search on the specific title of the article that I'm posting (different news outlets use different headlines/titles for the same story).
13 posted on 02/09/2004 11:30:51 AM PST by Born Conservative ("Forgive your enemies, but never forget their names" - John F. Kennedy)
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To: Born Conservative
It could have been worse. The pilot could have asked them to pray the the wings stayed on.
14 posted on 02/09/2004 11:31:52 AM PST by Doctor Stochastic (Vegetabilisch = chaotisch is der Charakter der Modernen. - Friedrich Schlegel)
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To: Born Conservative
I know I would have been thinking what does the pilot know that we don't know.
15 posted on 02/09/2004 11:32:24 AM PST by mel
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To: Born Conservative
Wonder how many raised their hands?

At least it wasn't a jihadi pilot.

Everyone convert or this plane goes down!
16 posted on 02/09/2004 11:32:30 AM PST by swarthyguy (Russia doesn't conduct negotiations with terrorists -- it destroys them," Vlad Putin)
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To: mel
I know I would have been thinking what does the pilot know that we don't know.

"Uhh... This is the captain speaking. If anyone on board has not made peace with their maker, right about now would be a real good time to do so. Thanks."

17 posted on 02/09/2004 11:35:46 AM PST by Modernman ("When you want to fool the world, tell the truth." -Otto von Bismarck)
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To: Born Conservative
When I fly, I generally use the time to study some subject by reading a book. I'm always annoyed if I get seated next to an over-talkative passenger, since that time is useful to me.

It doesn't really matter what the other passenger wants to discuss. I'm not interested. I have stuff to do. Generally, just telling them that I'd prefer to continue with my reading lets me get back to my book.

Not always, though, and I remember one specific time when the person sitting next to me decided to "witness" to me about Christianity. I told the person that I was busy and that I preferred to study than to discuss religion.

Didn't work. The individual continued to interrupt me with his "good news." I repeated my request to be left alone. That led to this "christian" telling me all about what I would face if I didn't "follow Jesus." I asked once more to be left alone to study.

Still didn't work. The individual got more and more persistent and more and more annoying and personal with his description of the nature of his "hell."

After about an hour, I finally grew terminally annoyed at his constant interruptions and very, very quietly said:

"In the name of Satan, I curse you and your household."

Very quietly. Now, I'm an atheist and don't believe in any Satan any more than I believe in any other deities.

Sure shut the guy up, though. He turned white and never said another word for the rest of the flight. I got my studying done just fine.

Rude of me? Sure, and I probably shouldn't have done that. But, I could find no other method of shutting this rude individual up.
18 posted on 02/09/2004 11:42:12 AM PST by MineralMan (godless atheist)
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To: Born Conservative
There is an appropriate time and appropriate place for this discussion; unfortunately, this wasn't it.

No reply necessary or desired to this post; but just for informational purposes to the nonchristians posting in this thread: For a christian the appropriate time and appropriate place is any time and any place the Lord directs them to witness for Him.

Also were I flying on the plane it would give me comfort to know that the pilot's beliefs were those that involve loving the breath of life the Lord gives them each day and beliefs that aspire to save the lives of others not destroy themselves and as many as they can take with them.

As for this man's witness I thank the Lord for it. All he did was deliver the message - no guns to anyone's heads. Listening, acceptance or rejection is all up to the person hearing it.

19 posted on 02/09/2004 11:51:40 AM PST by Down South P.E.
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To: Down South P.E.
For a christian the appropriate time and appropriate place is any time and any place the Lord directs them to witness for Him.

If the Lord is "telling" you when to bear witness, rather than trust your own good judgement, you have a bigger problem than people not wanting to listen to you.

"To every thing there is a season." To "witness" to people in a closed, confined environment is the height of rudeness.

And, as we know from St. Paul, love is kind, not rude.

20 posted on 02/09/2004 11:56:22 AM PST by sinkspur (Adopt a shelter dog or cat! You'll save one life, and maybe two!)
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To: MineralMan
But after all is said and done, what if you are wrong and he is right? You are perfectly within your rights to b left alone and not be annoyed, but if I were heading toward a path of eternal torment and damnation, I'd sure hope that there were mobs of people trying to get my attention no matter how rude they were. The real question is whether or not the substance of the message is correct and true.

"His" hell may be The Hell. What if it is? If not, (and I was not there to hear his description, of course) then how do you know it is not?
21 posted on 02/09/2004 11:58:05 AM PST by sleepy_hollow
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To: Down South P.E.
Well, I hate flying as it is. If I sit down in one of those seats and I hear anyone asking for the Christians to identify themselves, I think I'll just poop my pants right there. Has this moron been asleep for a few years? Airplanes and religious zealotry do not mix.
22 posted on 02/09/2004 11:58:52 AM PST by Mr. Bird
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To: Down South P.E.
For a christian the appropriate time and appropriate place is any time and any place the Lord directs them to witness for Him.

If you're sitting next to me on a plane and you attempt to witness to me, if I tell you to stop, will you?

23 posted on 02/09/2004 12:00:37 PM PST by Modernman ("When you want to fool the world, tell the truth." -Otto von Bismarck)
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To: Born Conservative
If God is happy with the pilots work...who cares what other humans being might be
"offended" by "The Truth".
24 posted on 02/09/2004 12:01:53 PM PST by joesnuffy (Moderate Islam Is For Dilettantes)
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To: joesnuffy
If God is happy with the pilots work...who cares what other humans being might be "offended" by "The Truth".

The people on the plane are paying customers. If even one of them refuses to fly American again, or if anyone who hears of this story refuses to fly again, this pilot has done a disservice to his employer.

A business exists only if enough customers pay money for its services, so I'm sure American Airlines cares whether its customers were offended.

25 posted on 02/09/2004 12:05:55 PM PST by Modernman ("When you want to fool the world, tell the truth." -Otto von Bismarck)
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To: sleepy_hollow
You are perfectly within your rights to b left alone and not be annoyed, but if I were heading toward a path of eternal torment and damnation, I'd sure hope that there were mobs of people trying to get my attention no matter how rude they were.

As a Catholic, let me say that I am FED UP with fundamentalists who have decided that everyone who doesn't believe as they do is going to hell. And, because of that, the fundamentalist thinks it's his job to muscle or scare that person into loving God.

You do no good with this kind of warped thinking and behavior; in fact, you turn off more people than you help.

But, you guys never learn and continue to drag down real evangelism with your bullying tactics.

26 posted on 02/09/2004 12:05:56 PM PST by sinkspur (Adopt a shelter dog or cat! You'll save one life, and maybe two!)
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To: MineralMan
I'm an atheist, and I didn't come by my atheism by being ignorant of Christian teachings.

How very true...atheism comes from a hardend heart...according to the bible...

Psalms 14:1 .....Size (L) 14.95

27 posted on 02/09/2004 12:07:00 PM PST by joesnuffy (Moderate Islam Is For Dilettantes)
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To: joesnuffy
If God is happy with the pilots work...who cares what other humans being might be "offended" by "The Truth".

Because God is not happy with rude people.

28 posted on 02/09/2004 12:07:01 PM PST by sinkspur (Adopt a shelter dog or cat! You'll save one life, and maybe two!)
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To: sleepy_hollow
"But after all is said and done, what if you are wrong and he is right? You are perfectly within your rights to b left alone and not be annoyed, but if I were heading toward a path of eternal torment and damnation, I'd sure hope that there were mobs of people trying to get my attention no matter how rude they were. The real question is whether or not the substance of the message is correct and true. "

Hmm...first you say that I'm within my rights to be left aloen, then you equivocate. I do not care if I am wrong and he is right. I insist on being left alone during flights, no matter what the person next to me wants to natter on about.

That is the real question. I tried to politely ask the person to leave me alone several times. He did not. So, I said something that shut him up for the rest of the flight.

You're welcome to believe whatever you wish. Please show me the courtesy to disbelieve when we are in a public conveyance.
29 posted on 02/09/2004 12:07:30 PM PST by MineralMan (godless atheist)
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To: Mr. Bird
I think I'll just poop my pants right there

You owe me a keyboard!

Seriously, that is precisely my point in post #4.

30 posted on 02/09/2004 12:08:37 PM PST by Born Conservative ("Forgive your enemies, but never forget their names" - John F. Kennedy)
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To: Mr. Bird
So the last thing you want is for someone to tell you about Jesus when you are afraid you might die? In fact the more afraid you are the less you want to know about your ultimate fate. Hmmm... how ironic.
31 posted on 02/09/2004 12:09:54 PM PST by sleepy_hollow
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To: MineralMan
Not always, though, and I remember one specific time when the person sitting next to me decided to "witness" to me about Christianity. I told the person that I was busy and that I preferred to study than to discuss religion.

You probably know why if you've read True Believer by Eric Hoffer.

A powerful way to validate our beliefs is to proselytize others. Somehow our brain thinks that the more people believe a concept, the more accurate the concept is.

Furthermore, the crusader's beliefs are solidified the more he talks about them, whether he has a willing audience or not. His internal cognitive dissonance takes a break during the proselytizing process.

That's why you can see Jehovah's Witness duos trying to pass their magazines to unwilling pedestrians walking briskly to work at 6 AM and 20 degrees. The JW goes home feeling stronger in his faith, since he was persecuted by the devil that morning (ridiculed by some bad-tempered pedestrians) and got a chance to talk to his fellow crusader about how strong his faith is (his faith sustains him in this uncomfortable environment)

32 posted on 02/09/2004 12:09:58 PM PST by george wythe
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To: joesnuffy
"If God is happy with the pilots work...who cares what other humans being might be
"offended" by "The Truth"."

If I'm sitting next to you and you insist on telling me "the Truth," you will soon discover who cares. I don't wish to listen to anyone natter on about their "truth," whatever it might be, on an airplane. I will ask you politely to desist. I will repeat that a few times. Then I will insist.
33 posted on 02/09/2004 12:10:41 PM PST by MineralMan (godless atheist)
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To: Born Conservative
If an airline pilot ever ask that I start praying, you can bet your bottom-dollar that is exactly what I'll be doing!
34 posted on 02/09/2004 12:11:06 PM PST by TexasCajun
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To: MineralMan
I'm an atheist,...

WE KNOW. You announce it more times than John Kerry announces he was in Vietnam. I'm waiting for you to throw a cross over the White House fence.

35 posted on 02/09/2004 12:11:10 PM PST by Hacksaw (theocratic Confederate flag waving loyalty oath supporter)
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To: sinkspur
If the Lord is "telling" you when to bear witness, rather than trust your own good judgement, you have a bigger problem than people not wanting to listen to you.

"To every thing there is a season." To "witness" to people in a closed, confined environment is the height of rudeness.

I didn't read where he said for someone to stand up and start preaching. I also didn't read where he told anybody they had to do anything. If someone approaches you and wants to engage you in a conversation and you don't want to talk about it; dont! That doesn't just apply to religion you know, it could be anything.

And, as we know from St. Paul, love is kind, not rude.

As I previously stated that no reply to the post was necessary as I would not expect nonchristians to understand. Since you reference Paul though, you may want to check out his methods of witnessing; uh... along with many other christians over the centuries. There's nothing unkind about sharing the Gospel of Jesus Christ. No one said anyone had to listen or even engauge in a conversation.

36 posted on 02/09/2004 12:12:11 PM PST by Down South P.E.
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To: Born Conservative; nutmeg; Cacique; rmlew; NYC GOP Chick
This is in NO WAY as entertaining as the overhead comments made by the conducter on the R train a week ago when the doors wouldn't close:

"We would be able to move if that blind f--k and the fat f--k in the back would get their asses on the train."

I guess he forgot to shut off his communicator.

37 posted on 02/09/2004 12:12:47 PM PST by Clemenza (East side, West side, all around the town. Tripping the light fantastic on the sidewalks of New York)
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To: Modernman
If you're sitting next to me on a plane and you attempt to witness to me, if I tell you to stop, will you?

Sure. Shake the dust off and move on to the next person.

38 posted on 02/09/2004 12:15:30 PM PST by Down South P.E.
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To: Down South P.E.
Since you reference Paul though, you may want to check out his methods of witnessing; uh... along with many other christians over the centuries.

There were no 767s in St. Paul's day.

39 posted on 02/09/2004 12:15:31 PM PST by sinkspur (Adopt a shelter dog or cat! You'll save one life, and maybe two!)
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To: MineralMan
But we are not now in that "mode". You are "discussing" it. You did not ask me to not post anything to you about Jesus. In fact that would be absurd. That renders my post relevant and far from any sort of equivocation. I am dealing with this forum and responding within it.

You would be well advised to either defend your nonsensical atheistic view (to which you are entitled, and notice I said atheism is nonsense, not you), or simply stop posting. That way you'd model the very behavior you desired of the annoying Christian on the plane. Keep the two separate as they really are. The plane experience was one event. Your decision to raise it here and discuss it is another and quite distinct event.
40 posted on 02/09/2004 12:17:25 PM PST by sleepy_hollow
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To: Down South P.E.
Sure. Shake the dust off and move on to the next person.

Fair enough.

41 posted on 02/09/2004 12:18:02 PM PST by Modernman ("When you want to fool the world, tell the truth." -Otto von Bismarck)
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To: joesnuffy
T-shirts are just silly. Here's another one:
42 posted on 02/09/2004 12:20:27 PM PST by MineralMan (godless atheist)
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To: george wythe
"You probably know why if you've read True Believer by Eric Hoffer.

A powerful way to validate our beliefs is to proselytize others. Somehow our brain thinks that the more people believe a concept, the more accurate the concept is.

"

Yes, thanks, I read it. And that's the way all philosophies spread, it seems. It's just that I prefer to do other things than listen to someone ramble about his beliefs on an airplane, where I can't just leave.

I close the door on all JW's who come to my house. That's my privilege...not to listen to folks tell me to believe as they do.
43 posted on 02/09/2004 12:25:56 PM PST by MineralMan (godless atheist)
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To: Down South P.E.
"Sure. Shake the dust off and move on to the next person."

Great. Then we'll get along just fine.
44 posted on 02/09/2004 12:27:22 PM PST by MineralMan (godless atheist)
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To: sleepy_hollow
So the last thing you want is for someone to tell you about Jesus when you are afraid you might die

Umm, no. The last thing I want is to be lined up according to my faith in a tube 6 miles in the air with some bloodthirsty Islamist asking the questions.

Turns out this pilot had honest intentions, and there was no actual harm done. But it was a very stupid request. Similar to someone asking people on the Baltimore Metro at 11pm to raise their hands if they have more than a $100 cash on them.

45 posted on 02/09/2004 12:29:07 PM PST by Mr. Bird
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To: sleepy_hollow
"You would be well advised to either defend your nonsensical atheistic view (to which you are entitled, and notice I said atheism is nonsense, not you), or simply stop posting. That way you'd model the very behavior you desired of the annoying Christian on the plane. Keep the two separate as they really are. The plane experience was one event. Your decision to raise it here and discuss it is another and quite distinct event."

I have done so many times. This is a discussion forum, so I discuss here. Unlike on an airliner, nobody is required to join this discussion. I cannot force my words on anyone here, since it's easy to just ignore whatever I write. I did not bring this issue up...the thread did that. I do appreciate your telling me what I'd be "well-advised" to do, though. I'll consider it.
46 posted on 02/09/2004 12:30:30 PM PST by MineralMan (godless atheist)
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To: Born Conservative
This is the kind of idiocy that gives conservative Christians a bad name.
47 posted on 02/09/2004 12:37:16 PM PST by Steve_Seattle ("Above all, shake your bum at Burton.")
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To: Born Conservative
At least he didn't say, "I've just been raptured and no one is flying this plane."
48 posted on 02/09/2004 12:39:25 PM PST by Steve_Seattle ("Above all, shake your bum at Burton.")
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To: Born Conservative
Passenger Amanda Nelligan told WCBS-TV of New York that the pilot called non-Christians "crazy"

Now there's some customer service.

Before the flames commence, know that I respect the pilot's unalienable right say that, anywhere he likes. Government has no business there.

But were I the pilot's boss, he would be looking for a job.

49 posted on 02/09/2004 12:40:01 PM PST by freeeee ("Owning" property in the US just means you have one less landlord)
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To: Down South P.E.
All he did was deliver the message - no guns to anyone's heads. Listening, acceptance or rejection is all up to the person hearing it.

I have a feeling you wouldn't be so tolerant if the pilot was gay & wanted to inform everyone re: the benefits of gay marriage

Or was a John Kerry supporter & wanted to tell everyone what a great candidate he is.

Or was a KKK member & wanted to discuss the benefits of lynching blacks.

Or....

50 posted on 02/09/2004 12:44:04 PM PST by gdani (Have you played Atari today?)
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