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Comment count is 55
MongoMcMichael - 2010-01-20

Rachel's a fox when she's feisty.

THA SUGAH RAIN - 2010-01-20

I must have missed the part in the constitution where it prohibits private companies from putting whatever the fuck they want on their products.

Xenocide - 2010-01-20

When you take up a government contract, it's generally assumed that you will be producing a product that meets government standards, ie, you don't mix religion into what you do. This is why the government does not put in bulk orders for Chick Tracts. At least not since Rick Santorum lost his senate seat.

poorwill - 2010-01-20

Well I guess the issue is that the government that is buying them from the private company.

poorwill - 2010-01-20


TeenerTot - 2010-01-20

How about that part of the constitution where my tax dollars are not used to buy jesus propaganda?

Honest Abe - 2010-01-20

oh look the sugah rain is being dumb again

Bort - 2010-01-20

Constitutional or no, it's a staggeringly bad idea, for reasons Rachel Maddow explained.

Chibisuke - 2010-01-20

You know, it seems kind of silly to get worked up over coded bible verses on guns when we still swear people in on bibles, have the ten commandments hanging in our courtooms, and include the phrases "under god" in our anthem, and "in god we trust" on our currency.

Bort - 2010-01-21

Of course, if we're trying to persuade folks in the Middle East that our presence there isn't a literal Crusade, putting Christian messages on our weapons really doesn't help. And if you've read any of the articles on PoE-News about our more zealous Christian soldiers, they already treat this too much like a Christian occupation; they don't need further encouragement to misbehave either.

garcet71283 - 2010-01-21

Ahem...."Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances."

That's it. That's all it says.

Wombles - 2011-01-18

The problem is military contracts aren't very competitive, and are all but guaranteed once they've been acquired.

Want some evidence? Recall this video.

Too bad they didn't use "turn the other cheek" or "love they enemy". Stupid they used Jesus at all; Old Testament has much better things to inscribe on weapons.

THA SUGAH RAIN - 2010-01-20

Yeah im not saying its a good idea, I just think shes being loose with the "unconstitutional" claim.

StanleyPain - 2010-01-20

The products are for the use of a government agency, i.e. the military. It violates separation of church and state. Thus, unconstitutional.

phalsebob - 2010-01-20

SUGAH, didn't you just say the same retarded shit in the post directly above?

EvilHomer - 2010-01-20

Stanley: just out of curiosity, where is the line drawn? The Army issues Bibles for troops and crucifix pins for it's chaplains- these clearly haven't been deemed unconstitutional, although they're made by a government agency, for a government agency, and are far more religious in nature than serial numbers.

Camonk - 2010-01-20

Yeah, I'm sure some dumbass on PoETV knows more than a dame with a PhD in political science.

StanleyPain - 2010-01-20

They should be unconstitutional. They ARE unconstitutional. But, since the US is so tolerant of theocracy (because how well it's worked out for people around the world) we've always been cool with shit like Army chaplains and handing out bibles and all that asshattery. It's all remnants of our glorious past when the "greatest generation" thought it would be pretty cool to blanket our entire army with JESUS JESUS JESUS because it would show the enemy that we were going to wipe them out with the POWER OF GOD, but now it's backfiring on us badly because now thanks to our military so desperately trying to continually identify with Christian concepts and values, we have shit for credibility in places like Iraq, especially when we openly allow soldiers to preach to people and make their platoons "Christian Warrior platoons" and all that garbage. The bible verses on the rifles is, in the grand scope of things, pretty minor, but it is one of the zillions of things massively wrong with this country's insane, zealot-like obsession with identifying with Christianity and having to broadcast it everywhere.

EvilHomer - 2010-01-20

So you're against chaplains too?

The Army doesn't train chaplains. They won't even pay for the chaplain's schooling (he has to be a qualified religious leader in the civilian world before he can get his commission) and while their own religious rights are respected (a Catholic chaplain can't be forced to perform a Wiccan ritual himself) they're required to tolerate and provide avenues for services to all faiths (that Catholic chaplain can't harass the Wiccans, and needs to set up ways for the Wiccans to observe their faith on their own). Services are completely voluntary, although some may provide "incentives" like escaping work details, and there's an elaborate system of legal defenses in place so anyone afraid that their right to believe or nonbelieve is being threatened can press legal action. This is all to avoid church-state issues and promote the military's official tolerant, diversity-based ecumenical attitude.

If not chaplains, though, then what else? There's a lot of religious folks in uniform (which is understandable given the nature of their work), and they need access to the religious services of their choice, whether it's a matter of their civil rights, emergencies like funerary services, or simply keeping their spirits up. If a chaplain corps is unconstitutional, then how else should military personnel receive the spiritual support they want and, in some respects, need?

pastorofmuppets - 2010-01-20

Wait, there are lesbians in the army?

EvilHomer - 2010-01-20

Plenty, although not as many as in the Navy and Marines.

Cleaner82 - 2010-01-20

'THE GRAND SCOPE OF THINGS'!!! Ha ha! You see because the, the scopes... sorry.

bluiker - 2010-01-20

Not Psalm 144:1?

MrBuddy - 2010-01-20

So a company puts seemingly random letters, numbers and a semicolon on rifle scopes and you have to use a microscope to read it; then if you know what the code means you can read a verse in the Bible about Jesus Christ and light. ABC points it out to the whole word and while Maddow has a point she comes across as sounding like an inverted image of Glen Beck by highlighting the issue.

Yup, everyone involved is an idiot in this case.

theSnake - 2010-01-20

She should also smile more, shes so pretty when she smiles and is never going to get a husband scowling at stories like this all the time

TeenerTot - 2010-01-20

Gun nuts have been highlighting this on YouTube for ages. So don't knock Maddow for covering the story.

Timothy A. Bear - 2010-01-20

Damn it. No Faithmouse.

William Burns - 2010-01-20

This is making the rounds on the right-wing blogs and giving Trijicon a lot of good, free press.

GravidWithHate - 2010-01-20

Unconstitutional? Maybe. Seems like we're in the same territory as Roy Brown and his monuments, where the display of a specific relegious message on government property was held to violate the establishment clause.

A fucking stupid idea? Hell yes! Let's turn a narrow fight against a group of terrorists and killers drawn from and financed by a mutant Saudi strain of Sunni Islam into a general war on Islam, by explicitly identifying ourselves with Christianity. There is NO WAY that could go badly for us!

EvilHomer - 2010-01-20

Sorry guys, but I'm going to have go against Rachel on this one. When I read the title, I assumed it was going to be some sort of "that sniper guy from Saving Private Ryan" deal, where actual Bible verses were printed on scopes so the shooter could recite Old Testament justice while gunning down the Mohammedans. I didn't expect manufacturer serial numbers loosely inspired by Bible verse numbers, which in all likelihood would be totally ignored by everyone involved had Ms Maddow not called attention to it. Hell, even after having it explained to me with helpfully zoomed in, highlighted pictures, I'm still not sure I'd notice these things with the scope right in front of me, let alone two hundred meters away being used to site me. That hardly qualifies as "printing Bible verses", or as a "danger to American troops" (at least until AL Jazeera gets wind of this story, thanks "Geraldo"), and as Mr Buddy said, sounds more like Glenn Beck deconstructing statues than anything else. It's not that I think this was a GOOD idea, it's just that it's not a particularly serious issue.

Also, it's cute that she thinks the military doesn't proselytize. The organization itself doesn't, and does indeed have rules in place to corral overzealous chaplainary and provide a broad, tolerant ecumenical environment, but religion in general is still very prominent (or at least more prominent than a secular liberal New Englander like myself is used to) and diehard Christians will always find a way to promote their own faith, bless their little hearts. I've found that the best way is just to roll with it and move on.

Camonk - 2010-01-20

If you don't see a problem with a company feeding the propaganda that America is a despotic, decadent empire trying to make the entire like itself by force of arms then you should at least see a problem with a company using phony, empty spirituality to profit from war.

I think you're also gay? I don't know. My heart's not in it, but I think it's required to include an insult when you disagree with a poster around here?

EvilHomer - 2010-01-20

No, not at all. I can't speak for the manufacturers, so I don't know whether their spirituality is genuine or not, but frankly I don't care and don't see how it's relevant either way. It's not really "cashing in" since I highly doubt this was one of their selling points to the US Military and at any rate seems liable to cost them their lucrative contracts. And since they're an arms manufacturer, profiting from war is what they do.

Like I said above, I wouldn't be putting Bible verses on ACOGs personally, but the gap between the politically charged hysterics surrounding this issue and the sober, almost disappointing reality of the situation on the ground is so vast that I just can't bring myself to be offended. If anything, I'm more upset that Rachel WANTS me to be upset than I am at the Baptist knuckleheads who made these scopes.

pastorofmuppets - 2010-01-20

I agree with EvilHomer.

That said, that they are of course denigrating their religion by making a connection between its sacred text and their weapons. There are a lot of Christian pacifists who would just abhor this. I, on the other hand, have long learned to expect this sort of thing.

It might be cute to make up some bumper stickers that say "my other cheek is a rifle." And you fucking know they'd sell.

1394 - 2010-01-20

These have been on their scopes for the last 10 years or so... The government screwed up by letting them stamp it on the models they ordered which are exactly the same as if you were to go to the store and buy one out of pocket. I can see the fuss but its fucking stupid all around. Then again the military is full of religious wackos these days so I wouldn't mind them getting stuffed about something so trivial.

Also, ACOGs are awesome and some of the best optics out there so I'm glad that these HORRIBLY OFFENSIVE scopes at least work.

poorwill - 2010-01-21

'my other cheek is a rifle' holy shit, doooo this. You will make some mad bank and you will get to cackle cynically all the while.

chumbucket - 2010-01-20

Trijicon is genius, now they will start a whole new "collect em all" frenzy with sniper rifles and be rollin in the dough

CCCPZZZ - 2010-01-20

My Scopemans, let me show you them

THA SUGAH RAIN - 2010-01-20

Jules' speech from Ezekiel 25:17:
'The path of the righteous man is beset on all sides with the iniquities of the selfish and the tyranny of evil men. Blessed is he who in the name of charity and good will shepherds the weak through the valley of darkness, for he is truly his brother's keeper and the finder of lost children. And I will strike down upon those with great vengeance and with furious anger those who attempt to poison and destroy my brothers. And you will know that my name is the Lord when I lay my vengeance upon thee.'

Would have been a better choice.

ABoyNamedCheese - 2010-01-20

Somehow, my crush on Rachel is flamingly gay. I am a man who is utterly and hopelessly GAY for a woman. It makes no sense.

Bebido - 2010-01-20

How can someone be so hot, yet so right. Yet so hot!

Frank Rizzo - 2010-01-20

as an atheist and centralist/democrat thing, this is the lamest "issue" ever

seriously, you libs need to find a better issue.

kingofthenothing - 2010-01-20

I'm an atheist but I'd be totally cool with killing people with bible verses on my gun, as long as it's the Pulp Fiction version of Ezekiel 25:17.

magnesium - 2010-01-20

This issue wouldn't have stood out to me (I don't care what they write on their guns), except for the fact that Christians are all getting upset that anyone would suggest putting Bible verses on an assault rifle is a bad thing. In any other country in the world, Christians would be outraged that someone was using the word of God as a gimmick to sell murder weapons. But in America? Stop trying to censor the one true faith you baby killing, liberal, atheist bastards!

Next, someone will use a cartoon Jesus to sell tampons, or they can print the ten commandments on toilet paper, and if you suggest it's a bad idea, you hate America.

pastorofmuppets - 2010-01-20

Love the flag? Make it into a track suit!

remag2117 - 2010-01-20

The news tells you not what to think. It simply tells you what to think about.

Stop drinking this koolaid!

Cube - 2010-01-20

Americans believe in a god, lol! What's next, Santa Claus, Easterbunny and Mr. T?

THA SUGAH RAIN - 2010-01-20


oogaBooga - 2010-01-20

Conversely, I dont think any of the Iraqis would have thought anything other than that those numbers and letters were part of a serial or manufacturing number IF RACHEL FUCKING MADDOW DIDN'T MAKE A HUGE STINK OUT OF IT.

pastorofmuppets - 2010-01-20

You make it sound like we have credibility in the Middle East that we are in danger of losing. At this point it really doesn't fucking matter. Thank god we've got the bomb.

pastorofmuppets - 2010-01-20

(not you specifically, I should have said "you guys." or maybe "you people"? that's a fun one.)

bopeton - 2010-01-20

Who Would Jesus Snipe?

Urkel Forever - 2010-01-20

Just reading the headline, I thought for a second that this was going to be an Onion News Network video.

nemeses9 - 2010-01-20

Me too...

It wasn't...


DJRobotron - 2010-01-20

I've never seen Rachel Maddow's show, but if she's half as good as the fellow who was filling in for her in this clip, then I'll definitely become a regular watcher.

garcet71283 - 2010-01-22

Constitution: "Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances."

Jefferson: "Believing with you that religion is a matter which lies solely between man and his god, that he owes account to none other for his faith or his worship, that the legitimate powers of government reach actions only, and not opinions, I contemplate with sovereign reverence that act of the whole American people which declared that their "legislature" should "make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof," thus building a wall of separation between church and State. Adhering to this expression of the supreme will of the nation in behalf of the rights of conscience, I shall see with sincere satisfaction the progress of those sentiments which tend to restore to man all his natural rights, convinced he has no natural right in opposition to his social duties."

Basically, a company can put whatever they want on it. The government cannot stop them, however, it doesn't have to reward them the contract....but by the same right it shouldn't be prejudiced against the company for the same reason. Maybe they make good scopes, i dunno...

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