Burch: 'City Paper' closing

Friday, July 26, 2013 at 1:13am
By Michael R. Burch

It has been a distinct honor and a real pleasure to have been allowed to write a weekly column for The City Paper these last three years. But I’m glad that I didn’t quit my day job, because professional journalism is becoming a very tough financial row to hoe.

As more and more content becomes free on the Internet, it becomes harder and harder to get readers to pay for anything non-copyright-able, like the news. And as advertisers devote more and more of their budgets to Internet heavyweights like Google and YouTube, it becomes harder and harder for smaller publishers to earn enough advertising money to stay afloat. I believe The City Paper has been a consistently good publication that is now shutting down through no fault of its own — a victim of demographics.

Unfortunately, many other outstanding small news outfits will soon follow suit. Such is the march of progress, one supposes. But sometimes “progress” means settling for a cheap aluminum can, rather than a fist-satisfying pewter tankard.

And such “progress” is not limited to newspapers and pubs. In a recent flashy presentation to well-heeled advertisers, Google’s Eric Schmidt didn’t predict that Internet video will one day surpass TV viewing. Instead, according to him, it’s already happened. Schmidt said that “the future is now” for YouTube, which recently passed one billion unique visitors per month. But he’s already talking about six or seven billion.

Obviously, if Google, YouTube, Facebook and a few other Internet heavyweights get billions of visitors per month, they can suck in huge amounts of advertising money, creating enormous vacuums elsewhere in the ether. In the writing world, quality normally means much more than quantity ... but not if no one can find the words.

I hope all my colleagues at The City Paper are able to land on their feet. I was very fortunate to have worked with two excellent editors, William Williams and James Nix. They gave me the chance to follow in the footsteps of “Give ’em Hell” Harry S. Truman, who once pointed out that he didn’t actually give anyone hell: he just told them the truth and they thought it was hell.

Michael R. Burch is a Nashville-based editor and publisher of Holocaust poetry and other “things literary” at www.thehypertexts.com.

Filed under: City Voices

105 Comments on this post:

By: yogiman on 7/26/13 at 7:29

I must say, Mike, I do fear for your sanity. It's incomprehensible for me to understand how someone like you who seems reasonably intelligent to accept someone as their president when they don't even know their legal name and that person refuses to identify himself.

Now don't tell me he's shown his birth certificate because it's be proven to be a fake. It doesn't take 9 different pages of data to make a one page document.

I'm sure you know what a 'font' is, Mike; are you aware [one] of the experts found one of the fonts used in Barry's birth certificate didn't exist in 1961... that is if August 4 was his actual birthday.

By: Mike Burch on 7/26/13 at 7:32

Yogi,

As I've said before, I'd rather have an intelligent Kenyan running the country than a buffoon like Bush Junior. If you want to do a service to your country, you should write about the legalities of morons becoming president.

Mike

By: Captain Nemo on 7/26/13 at 7:50

I think it is Comrade yogi that should worry about his own sanity. I have noticed it is the really crazy ones that thinks the rest of the world is insane.

Comrade yogi if you have so much time on your hands, why haven't you brought your evidence to the world instead of wasting time on this site? Could it be that all you have is just crap and no brains to think with.

By: bfra on 7/26/13 at 8:14

Nemo - You just suggested something that old brainless blob could make millions with. Fishmouth Trump couldn't prove anything on Obama & blob with all his proof (hee hee) could sell that to Trump for no telling how many millions. As gdiafante or brrrrk would say, "chop, chop" yogi!

By: budlight on 7/26/13 at 8:32

Mike Burch on 7/26/13 at 6:43
budlight,

I think for the most part everyone remained gentlemen and gentlewomen, so all the regulars are to be commended. It doesn't bother me to be criticized by people who believe that God gave man the Bible, that there was a perfect garden of Eden and a "fall," or other bizarre fantasies. I consider the source. When conservative Christians criticize me, I know I must be on the right track, since their entire history has been the blind leading the blind into the ditch. If they agree with me, I would fear for my sanity.
Mike

Mike, if I'm wrong and you're right, you have nothing to lose.

But if you're wrong and I'm right, you have much to lose.

God Bless Everyone.

By: yogiman on 7/26/13 at 8:56

bfra,

Why do you think 'Obama' all of a sudden presented the paper he claimed to be his birth certificate when he was faced with Donald Trump after stating he couldn't for so long of a time.

Why did he note in his autobiography (as I've noted several times) that he found an article folded away in his birth certificate?

Could just possibly be the birth certificate the Hawaiian government wouldn't allow him to get a copy of... as he claimed?

By: yogiman on 7/26/13 at 9:05

Mike,

If you'd rather have someone in the Oval Office illegally because you think he's more intelligent that George Bush, you're lacking of intelligence equal to George Bush. If you're so willing to accept a usurper in that office, what makes you an intelligent American citizen; or don't you care what the Constitution 'says'?

If your a communist, I understand; but if you love your freedom as pour founders gave us, you had better reconsider.

And it wouldn't hurt if you did a little research on the way your man Barry has ignored the constitution and especially the Senate.

Are you ready for a dictator? I hope you are because if Barry pulls his scheme off, you'll have one.

By: yogiman on 7/26/13 at 9:11

WOW! Two boo boos which I'm sure you'll notice. I just wish you knew the Constitution as well as you know the English language.

By: Mike Burch on 7/26/13 at 9:39

budlight,

Does "God Bless Everyone" mean something like "God bless everyone who is a Christian, but everyone else is out of luck?"

In order for God to bless everyone, God would have to be a universalist, not an intolerant bigot. The God of the Bible was a racist (preferring Jews to non-Jews), a sexist (preferring men to women), a homophobe, and a being so petty and unjust that he would send people of other religions to hell for not believing things that cannot be proven. That, of course, would make God the Devil. Only the Devil would save sinful Christians for believing he acts like the Devil, while sending thinking people like Gandhi and Einstein to hell for using their brains.

People who believe such things have no concept of justice. The Bible says that human beings were subjected to suffering and death because they gained the knowledge of good and evil. Therefore, because conservative Christians have no knowledge of good and evil, according to the Bible, they should be immortal and never suffer or die.

A just God would not punish human beings for using the brains he gave them, and not believing things that cannot be proven. Therefore, if God is just, orthodox Christianity is not a true religion. That is just simple logic.

By: budlight on 7/27/13 at 3:18

Yes, Mike, God blesses those who are not Christians. You have your views and it looks like they are filled with disdain. I'll just say that I Believe in God because He has proven to me that He does exist. I've been the recipient, both directly and indirectly of miracles and miracles only come from God.

when I look at the design of this universe, I know that something of a higher order than mere man designed and created it. When I look at the intricacy of the human body, brain, etc., and how it all works in perfect harmony, I see God. No man could create all of this and make it work so well. In fact, man does all he can to destroy the entire universe, even to the point of destroying his own body. God did not create sugar; he created sugar cane. Man did the "refining" and thus fills his body with something that rots it.

Anyway, like I said, If I'm wrong, you lose nothing. If you're wrong, you lose it all.

By: yogiman on 7/27/13 at 7:33

Well "spoken", budlight. I've know people in my life who have ridiculed God and people who loved God, but they sure prayed to God on their death beds.

I don't guess Mike can see God in the birth of his child. While man and woman create children, it's surely God that gives them that privilege.

By: bfra on 7/27/13 at 8:00

By: yogiman on 7/27/13 at 7:33

Well "spoken", budlight.
=====================================================
As 1 troll said to the other troll- "You tell'em cash register, you got the sliding drawers."

By: Captain Nemo on 7/27/13 at 9:24

Mike;

I have said this many times and I truly believe in it. There is always hope for the sinner, but none for the hypocrite who calls for God to bless everyone.

By: Captain Nemo on 7/27/13 at 9:27

Once again Comrade yogi understates the obvious. What use is life, if there is no reproduction?

By: yogiman on 7/27/13 at 11:59

dumba$$,

I've been trying to figure it out since I started getting your comments on this site: Are you and your "buddies" on this board ignorant, dumb or stupid?

I'm beginning to think all three definitions would describe you.

By: Captain Nemo on 7/27/13 at 4:44

No Comrade yogi, we leave ignorant, dumb and stupid to you.

By: Mike Burch on 7/27/13 at 10:25

Everyone,

I am not criticizing God, if God exists. I am simply pointing out that the basis of orthodox Christianity is wildly unjust, because intelligent people are damned for using their brains and not believing things that can't be proven, while people who believe things that can't be proven are rewarded with a free pass to heaven. This is like saying that if I believe in the Tooth Fairy, I should go to heaven, and if you don't, you should go to hell. It makes no sense whatsoever, and none of the main founding fathers believed in the divinity of Christ or in the Bible as the word of God. There were parts of the Bible that they liked, and much of it they ignored (as we all do, if we are honest).

No enlightened being could come up with a religion as unjust as Christianity, so if men didn't come up with the religion, it must have been The Other Guy.

Mike

By: Mike Burch on 7/27/13 at 10:33

Yogi,

How can anyone "love" an invisible entity who refuses to give them the time of day? Let's be honest. Christians don't "love" God. They pretend to "love" God in the hope that will get them to heaven. If there was no hope of heaven, they would give God the finger and do whatever they damn well pleased.

Mark Twain, the greatest American critic of the Bible and Christianity, figured it out and said that he was embarrassed to learn that he had been "saved" for economic reasons. Churches have been pretending to "save" people for more than 2,000 years. But anyone who reads the Bible and studies the development of the ideas therein, can easily see that for most of the Bible there was no mention of "hell" and no mention of an all-powerful demon called Satan. The Hebrew prophets never said that anyone would go to hell. Moses never mentioned hell. The Hebrew language doesn't even have a word that means hell.

So there is nothing for anyone to be saved from, according to the Bible. Hell was a pagan Greek invention, used to control the unwashed masses. If there was a hell, God and the Hebrew prophets would have known about it, if there is an all-wise God capable of speaking to prophets. If not, the Bible is meaningless.

So either way, Christian salvation is a money-making scam, and always has been.

Mike

By: budlight on 7/28/13 at 9:34

Mike, No Christians do not "pretend" to love God. That is so presumptuous of you and very belittling to Christians. Who are you to presume you know what is in the heart of man? Your opinion is your own and you have that God given right to it. One just has to read the following to know that is true.

“We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness. That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed, That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their Safety and Happiness.”
― Thomas Jefferson, The Declaration of Independence

Who is that “Creator” which endows us?
The Declaration justified the independence of the United States by listing colonial grievances against King George III, and by asserting certain natural and legal rights, including a right of revolution. Having served its original purpose in announcing independence, references to the text of the Declaration were few for the next four score years.Abraham Lincoln made it the centerpiece of his rhetoric (as in the Gettysburg Address of 1863), and his policies. Since then, it has become a major statement on human rights, particularly its second sentence:
We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.
This has been called "one of the best-known sentences in the English language",[6] containing "the most potent and consequential words in American history."[7] The passage came to represent a moral standard to which the United States should strive. This view was notably promoted by Abraham Lincoln, who considered the Declaration to be the foundation of his political philosophy, and argued that the Declaration is a statement of principles through which the United States Constitution should be interpreted.[8] It provided inspiration to numerous national declarations of independence throughout the world.

We are created equal in the eyes of God and should be to each other.

By: yogiman on 7/28/13 at 9:51

To believe, or not to believe. To each his own, Mike. If everyone on this earth had the same knowledge in their brains, they would all think alike and act alike. So how could we live if everyone was identical? There would be so many different kinds of work that would need to be done to exist; but how could there be?

And, as you know, every line of work has experts, excellent employees, mediocre s, lousy at the job and some in the [wrong damn business].

Religion is, in essence, just another job. As you know, there is many different religions on this earth and every one in those faiths have different regards to believers in faiths other than theirs.

And life on this earth boils down to one point: If you don't believe in God, who put you on this earth as the man you are?

And if there is no God, what is the reason for living; just to have fun?

By: budlight on 7/28/13 at 11:29

Mike God gave everyone (almost) a brain and the ability to have free will. Some people use their lives and brains for the greater good, ie, Mother Theresa, Billy Graham, Oprah Winfrey, Montel Williams, Jack Lalane, and on and on. But some are warped and only intent on harm or making money, ie, Charles Manson, the Hustler Magazine guy and others who exploit or harm others to gain.

When it's all over, we are not to be judged by our good deeds, but we are going to be held accountable for our actions. That seems fair to me. And I believe that souls live on forever, ie, the term "an old soul".

Sometimes I think that when a young person dies and we mere humans don't understand why "someone so young" died, it is because their soul was older than we could perceive or understand and they just went home because their mission was accomplished. I do believe there is a heaven. As well, there is an eternal lake of fire.

Like I said, if you are right and I am wrong, you have nothing to lose.
However, if I (and millions of others are right), you lose everything.

It brings great comfort to believe in God and talk to Him. And even greater comfort when one is very still and sees or hears the message from God. "Be still and Know".

By: bfra on 7/28/13 at 12:49

Hypocrites are worse than anybody!

By: Mike Burch on 7/28/13 at 1:04

budlight,

The best-known American founding fathers didn't profess to "love" God, or to believe in the deity of Jesus, or to need "salvation."

If the very intelligent, educated men who founded our country believed in Jesus, or loved God, where is a single shred of evidence? George Washington refused to take communion and never once mentioned the name Jesus in any of the thousands of letters of his that we have preserved. John Adams agreed with some Christian ethics, but he didn't believe in the divinity of Christ. Ben Franklin was a ladies' man and a Deist. Thomas Jefferson took scissors and cut out the parts of the Bible he disagreed with.

It there is a wise God overseeing things, it seems he prefers Deists and agnostics to Christians, to run the show. And considering how our government operates today, with conservative Christians like Bush Junior and Tennessee's parade of Tea Party morons, I would have to say that if there is a God, he is right to prefer non-Christians.

As the old saw goes, "the proof is in the pudding." The greatest American presidents were not orthodox Christians: Washington, Jefferson, Abe Lincoln, et al. They were called "infidels" by the Christians of their day.

When we finally ended up with a bible-touting evangelical Christian president, Bush Junior, what happened? I rest my case. God is right ... the last thing we need is a born-again Christian in any high elected office. It would be much better to elect people who use their powers of reason, and don't pretend to "love" God and to "know" his will, which according to the Bible makes him intolerant, a bigot, a homophobe, a chauvinist, and a being so petty he punishes people for not believing things that cannot be proven.

By: Mike Burch on 7/28/13 at 1:14

Yogi,

You asked: "And if there is no God, what is the reason for living; just to have fun?"

I would turn that around and say that if the Bible is correct about God and what he REALLY wants, why are Christians not doing what God wants them to do. Christians claim that God is perfect, which means he never changes, and that he is all-wise. This means that everything that displeased God in the Old Testament still displeases him today. If Christians really "love" God, they should not do things that he considers abominations.

Well, according to the Old Testament, God considers it an abomination to eat shellfish and pig products like bacon. God is all-wise. God is perfect. God never changes. It makes him sick to his stomach to see people eating shellfish and bacon. This point is made many times in the Old Testament.

God loathes the eating of shellfish and bacon. So why do Christians who profess to "love" God do something that he specifically said that he detests?

The answer is that Christians don't believe the Bible. They pick and choose the verses they want to believe. So why believe the grotesquely unjust verses about God wanting the blood of innocent animals, and the blood of an innocent human being, Jesus? Why turn God into a monster by teaching children to believe prehistoric verses about blood "washing" away sins?

Those are the things that ancient witchdoctors told gullible people in order to get meat they could eat for free, without working. Today the witchdoctors of Christianity, called "ministers" do the same thing. They brainwash innocent children into thinking they need to be "saved" from "hell" and then they live off the money they make pretending to help them be "saved."

But as bad as the Bible obviously is, for many thousands of years there was never a mention of hell, or any need to be saved after death.

Life would be a lot simpler if we didn't torture children with the fear that they can die and go to hell, or other people can die and go to hell. No one can "love" a God who is such a monster, as to do something like that.

By: yogiman on 7/28/13 at 2:23

Very well "said", Mike. We will just have to go by the old philosophy 'time will tell'.

I'll be glad to wait longer and maybe someone of today's time will be a better philosopher so I can be sure I'll go to Heaven.

By: Captain Nemo on 7/28/13 at 5:07

In all of entertity would not be enough time to tell you the truth,Comrade yogi. You are incapibile of learnjng anything of use. You are so full of crap, that truth a logic can never save your useless soul.

By: yogiman on 7/28/13 at 5:31

Huh? Would you mind repeating yourself and explain to me what you're trying to say, dumba$$?

By: bfra on 7/28/13 at 5:49

Nemo - I understand what you posted. Don't expect the brainless blob to uinderstand, he has no brains.

By: budlight on 7/28/13 at 6:01

Mike, you are certainly book educated. I just live by faith and I try to do the next right thing. I'm not perfect nor is any christian; we are merely perfecting as time goes on. God loves me. I am sure of that.

And as to the old testament rules of eating, I agree that shellfish and other types of food are not good for us because they are unclean. Shrimp makes me sick - especially to look at it when it is not deveined and has the poop still in it (people eat that crap).

Take care Mike. Again, if I"m wrong, you lose nothing. If I'm right, you lose it all. I like my odds better.

By: Captain Nemo on 7/28/13 at 7:23

I knew he did not have the brains for it, bfra.

bud I suspect that your faith is made up as the wind changes.

Comrade yogi, don't even try to understand. Your crap might leak out.

By: yogiman on 7/28/13 at 7:31

Well bfra,

With the brain I have, I'm certainly not worried about lack of knowledge when compared to you and dumba$$.

Heck, it only takes half a brain to be smarter than you two.

By: boyzmom on 7/28/13 at 9:55

I don't comment here often, but I must admit how sad I feel knowing that this paper is about to become a memory. It has been refreshing to access local political commentary that is centrist/leaning-towards-liberal in this hopelessly red state. I would also like to know where this group will go to continue the commentary. There is little more American than smart, civil dialogue! My best wishes to you and your family during this time of transition.

By: budlight on 7/28/13 at 10:13

y: Captain Nemo on 7/28/13 at 7:23
I knew he did not have the brains for it, bfra.

bud I suspect that your faith is made up as the wind changes.

no, capt. you are wrong. My faith is grounded in stone and set or else I would have given up long ago. But I don't need to convince you. The only person I have to convince is myself and that's a done deal for me through God and his son Jesus, and the Comforter, the Holy Spirit.

Have a nice evening.

By: yogiman on 7/29/13 at 6:33

Mike,

You have made the statement you prefer usurper Obama as your president over George Bush.

Tell me, are you a fellow communist with Barry? If not, what do you think about the CPUSA (Communist Party USA) supporting him? And what do you think about most communist parties over the world openly supporting him?

By: WilliamWilliams on 7/29/13 at 8:02
Mike, Well put. I will miss working with you. William Williams
By: govskeptic on 7/29/13 at 8:10

No surprise this Mon A.M.to see TCP copy editors, first acknowledged on Fri,
congratulating their fellow writer. In fact these once weekly rants were in fact
Official Editorials, as was always suspected by this reader.

By: Captain Nemo on 7/29/13 at 8:18

By: budlight on 7/28/13 at 10:13
y: Captain Nemo on 7/28/13 at 7:23
I knew he did not have the brains for it, bfra.
bud I suspect that your faith is made up as the wind changes.
no, capt. you are wrong. My faith is grounded in stone and set or else I would have given up long ago. But I don't need to convince you. The only person I have to convince is myself (sic)and that's a done deal for me through God and his son Jesus, and the Comforter, the Holy Spirit.
Have a nice evening.
*******************************************************************************************

Government waste says, “The only person I have to convince is myself (sic)…..”

My question to her is; why does she have to convince herself? It sounds as if there is doubt in her heart and that she lacks the moral fortitude to believe in herself.

It is better to be a sinner and have hope for redemption, than to remain a hypocrite and have none.

By: budlight on 7/29/13 at 9:31

Capt being judged by the likes of you is of no consequence to me.

We all have to "convince" ourselves of something every now and then. I do not need to "believe in herself" when I have God to believe in. He is all I need. When I am in doubt, I do not turn to myself, I turn to God. In Him all things are possible.

Have a nice day.

By: bfra on 7/29/13 at 9:38

Hypocrites yak out of both sides of their mouth.

By: Captain Nemo on 7/29/13 at 10:36

There you go bud with the have a nice day crap. We all know that you are not capable of wishing any good tidings to others.

By: Captain Nemo on 7/29/13 at 10:38

It want be the judges you bud.

By: Captain Nemo on 7/29/13 at 10:42

shb That want judges

By: Mike Burch on 7/29/13 at 11:22

Budlight,

I think "odds" is the right word, since you are gambling on very odd ideas that turn God, Jesus and the Holy Spirit into the most unjust beings imaginable. Would a loving, wise, just being send anyone to hell, if he was able to save them? If God is unable to save, the Bible is full of lies. If God is able to save, and no human being is perfect, it would be terribly unjust for God to save people who believed he was an unjust monster, while condemning people who gave him the benefit of the doubt and decided that orthodox Christianity is the next thing to devil worship. Only the Devil would send people to hell for not believing things that cannot be proven. A truly loving being would never send anyone to hell, if he was able to save them. So if God is able to save, and if he is truly good, he would never do the terrible things Christians accuse him of, every time they say "Jesus saves" and under their breaths whisper, "but only if they believe what we believe." That condemns billions of people to hell or destruction, and no loving, wise being would be party to the greatest crime in the history of humanity.

Are the "odds" in your favor that God, if God exists, is such a Devil, and that the Devil will save you in favor of people like Gandhi and Einstein? I would say those are very long odds ...

By: Mike Burch on 7/29/13 at 11:30

Yogi,

I am not a communist. I just prefer intelligent Kenyans to dumb-as-a-rock conservative Christians like Bush Junior. I would vote for a Martian over American Republicans who are trying to turn our country into a theocracy based on biblical principles like homophobia, men dominating women, and Jews being allowed to ethnically cleanse non-Jews, which is pushing us toward World War III.

Communism is not a great threat to our country, but the beliefs of Bible-besotted right wingers most definitely is. So if you love your mama, support Obama!

By: Mike Burch on 7/29/13 at 11:56

Budlight,

There are many great lies, and one of the greatest lies is the one that Christians are being "guided by the Holy Spirit." Look at all the outrageous mistakes the writers of the Bible made. They couldn't even tell the same lies consistently, so the Bible is riddled with errors and contradictions ... thousands of them.

As the saying goes, the proof is in the pudding. So let's examine the evidence.

Christians who claimed to be "guided" by the "Holy Spirit" have ...

"Proven" that slavery was the "will of God" by quoting the many Bible verses that command and condone slavery.

"Proven" that there are women with supernatural powers who need to be hunted down and killed because the Bible says that witches should be put to death.

"Proven" that man is responsible for suffering and death because of "original sin," when it is obvious that trillions of animals suffered and died before man walked the earth, meaning that man cannot be responsible, and that there never was a perfect garden of Eden, and thus Saint Paul's salvation theology makes no sense. If anyone is responsible for suffering and death, it is the Creator, not his creations.

"Proven" that the earth is flat because of the many Bible verses that talk about the world being flat, and set on fixed foundations that cannot be moved because they were established by the hand of God. The earth looks flat and seems not to move, so when prehistoric people saw the sun, moon and planets moving on a daily basis, they assumed the earth was immobile and the center of things. The Bible expresses this idea many times, even in the book of Revelation, which says the stars are tiny dots of light that can "fall" to earth. But a single star approaching our galaxy would rip it apart long before any contact was made.

I could go on and on. Such looney-tunes ideas were not given to man by a loving, wise, enlightened being. They evolved out of primitive minds and were used by witch doctors (the Levite priests who gave us the Hebrew Bible) to delude the masses into thinking that the God who gave them such "wisdom" demanded animal sacrifices. This allowed them to be rich and eat the best meats without working.

As the saying goes, "follow the money" and it will lead you to the truth ... "salvation" has always been about making money and controlling the masses. But as bad as some of the Levites were (brutal murders of women and children, and proponents of ethnic cleansing and genocide), still they never dreamed of condemning anyone to eternal suffering after death. That was a pagan Greek idea, also to make money and control the masses, that entered Judaism through the Pharisees after Alexander the Great conquered the Middle East. This is why there is no hell in most of the Bible ... no one had thought of it until the Pharisees saw how splendidly it worked for their evil purposes. We know from the Jewish historian Josephus that the only Jews at the time of Jesus who believed in hell were the Pharisees.

By: Captain Nemo on 7/29/13 at 1:52

One more prove bud; that you are Christian, when you change from your hypocritical God Bless all to your arrogant put down of towards other of faiths.

By: Moonglow1 on 7/29/13 at 2:09

Moonglow1: Mike, perhaps we can follow you through your blog instead of the on line letters section of the Tennessean. Don't you have to subscribe to post? I do not subscribe. I will not waste my money.

It has been a pleasure to post here.

Loner/Captain and others: it has been fun to read and comment on your enlightened posts.

With all of the crooks in TN gov't esp our governor and Pilot, the pro charter school give your tax money away to private interests, the gun lovers, and on and on, only the City Paper provided us a voice and reported actual news.

Maybe there will be a miracle and some enlighted person will save it. Until then keep speaking out and may the truth save us all.

By: Moonglow1 on 7/29/13 at 2:13

Moonglow1 : Mike, I see you posted your URL...see you online there

By: Moonglow1 on 7/29/13 at 6:51

Moonglow1:speaking of Christianity, the Pope announced " who am I to pass judgment on gays..." oh oh now what are the Repub nuts going to do

By: budlight on 7/29/13 at 7:04

Mr. Burch, you are highly educated. I am mere mortal, born here on this earth because my parents met and I did not get to fill out a form requesting my race, gender or even my nationality. I just am. And because I am, I believe in God. God makes sense to me. I do not believe that God hurts anyone. Through our own free will, we chose to hurt ourselves. Cases in point: Amy Winehouse - Drug OD; Elvis Presley - Drug OD; Charles Manson - Crazed Druggie; Michael Jackson - Drug OD; numerous athletes, movie stars, ordinary down to earth people - they all have (had) free will. The ability to make our own choices.

Women sell their bodies; men sell their souls and vice versa. I cannot compete with you on the debate stage, but I will just conclude with: If I'm wrong, you have nothing to lose and if I'm right, you lose it all. I believe my soul will live on for eternity, long after my body is turned to dust.

Yogi is a nice guy as I am sure the rest of the people on this site are nice. They just can't move over and make room for everyone. Makes 'em TOO UNCOMFORTABLE to hear (read) the truth off of others. We all don't see, hear or perceive the same things at the same time.

One man's enlightenment might come in an instant, while another takes years to become enlightened. One drunk might need one arrest to stop drinking, while another might even have to kill someone in a drunk driving accident. And yet another may not ever see the need to stop drinking even after hurting countless people and themselves. And so on and so on.

Good night.