The Eclectic Quill

Website of Joshua McGee


The Hitchhiker’s Guide to Donald Trump

Life, the Universe, and Everything: 42
Death, a Fantasy World, and Nothingness: 45


It is not “intolerance” to oppose Trump and his supporters

It is all the rage in some conservative circles online to point at people who oppose Donald Trump, or who oppose supporters of Trump, and say "Look at you, preaching tolerance all the time, and now you show that you are nothing but a bigot!"

OK.  Let's break this one down.

"Tolerance", properly construed, is merely a convenient shorthand for recognizing the humanity of others and their right to carry on in any fashion that does not actively harm another person.  It is not magnanimity to "tolerate" gay people, or fat people, or people in wheelchairs, or people with a different skin color — rather, it is an act of wickedness to ostracize them.

Likewise, no one argues that we should tolerate a man who is assaulting someone in the middle of the street.  It is an immoral act to permit an assault — when you prevent violence, you are not denying a man his right to harm others, you are supporting his victim's right not to be subjected to violence.

I would go a step further: it is an immoral act to tolerate someone who stands by and watches a man commit violence against another human being without attempting to intercede, let alone someone who cheers that man on.  Such a person is not expressing a simple difference; such a person is enabling an unjust act.  And that gets us to Trump and his supporters.

No, I will not "tolerate" Donald Trump.  No, I will not "tolerate" your right to support Donald Trump.  To do so would, itself, be an injustice.  Trump is — with every breath and every joke and every grope — degrading and insulting and injuring and threatening and violating our fellow citizens.  To oppose him, and the people who enable him, is not called "intolerance".  To oppose them is called "morality".


Bob McDonnell on the importance of being a Christian elected official

It is such a joy to watch this guy crash and burn.


I understand the real importance of being Christian elected official, that it's not just what you say but it's also the style of how you say it, and acting in a degree of civility.

From the Garden of Eden… we believe that marriage is between a man and a woman, and other forms of relationships are just not gonna be recognized in Virginia. 

— Former Virginia Governor Bob McDonnell, convicted of 11 counts of corruption after his "I have a broken marriage" defense failed.


Lies, Damned Lies, and Twitter

This is not a pro-gun or an anti-gun post.  This is a pro-logic, anti-fearmongering post.

I composed these tweets in response to a RT from a popular Twitter account of the following alleged statistics:

The United States is 3rd in murders throughout the World!  But if you take out Chicago, Detroit, Washington D.C. and New Orleans, the United States is 4th from the bottom for murders.  Believe it or not, these 4 cities also have the toughest gun control laws in the United States.

This is how I responded on Twitter.


On being “not the right time” to discuss a tragedy

A lot of people seem to believe that it is bad form to talk about the factors that enabled a tragedy while a tragedy is still fresh in people's minds — that it is somehow uncouth or opportunistic.  If there is a mass shooting, or a toxic spill, or a case of clergy sexual abuse, many think that is "not the right time" to talk about those issues; that we are somehow disrespecting the victims rather than honoring them.

I, for one, look forward to a day when it's OK to talk about these issues.  Not just because we might, at last, be able to find ways to address these horrors, but because it means that there would be a single day in which an innocent is not killed because a purchase of deadly weapons was not adequately monitored; a day in which people's health and livelihoods are not destroyed by casual treatment of poisons; a day in which a child is not held down and raped by a man telling the child that he is doing god's work.  That day won't solve the problems forever, but it would be a welcome change.