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Fri May 4, 2012, 09:37 PM

Nova Scotia Teen in Trouble for Wearing ‘Life is Wasted Without Jesus’ Shirt

Nova Scotia Teen in Trouble for Wearing ‘Life is Wasted Without Jesus’ Shirt

<snip>

Swinimer is surprised his “Life is Wasted without Jesus” shirt has been at the center of so much controversy:

“I believe this is worth standing up for — it’s not just standing up for religious rights, it’s standing up for my rights as a Canadian citizen; for freedom of speech, freedom of religion. I don’t think this is right.”

I’m all for students having freedom to express their beliefs. But that doesn’t mean I approve of this shirt. There’s a pretty clear reason why:

It insults people who don’t believe in Jesus. It says very directly that they’re wasting their lives and that they’re worthless. It’s a form of bullying. (It’s also completely false — How many brilliant people have made contributions to our world without believing in Christian nonsense? It’s a shirt anyone can refute with about 2 seconds of thought.)

If Swinimer wore a shirt that said, “Life is great with Jesus,” I don’t think I would care much at all. That’s a personal message with positive tones (at least in theory). It’s no different than students expressing themselves by wearing a cross. Or atheists saying we can be good without god. It doesn’t say anything negative about people who don’t agree with your beliefs.

<snip>

For what it’s worth, the Centre For Inquiry in Canada put out a statement in support of Swinimer:

“While CFI sponsored the Atheist Bus Campaign, we are a strong champion of freedom of speech and freedom of religion,” said National Communications Director Justin Trottier. “This shirt causes no harm and is a perfectly acceptable contribution to the marketplace of ideas.”



More:
http://www.patheos.com/blogs/friendlyatheist/2012/05/04/nova-scotia-teen-in-trouble-for-wearing-life-is-wasted-without-jesus-shirt/




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Reply Nova Scotia Teen in Trouble for Wearing ‘Life is Wasted Without Jesus’ Shirt (Original post)
Ian David May 2012 OP
rrneck May 2012 #1
RebelOne May 2012 #2
rrneck May 2012 #3
sakabatou May 2012 #4
EvolveOrConvolve May 2012 #5
and-justice-for-all May 2012 #6
immoderate May 2012 #7
edcantor May 2012 #8
Rob H. May 2012 #9
dimbear May 2012 #10
Ian David May 2012 #11
2ndAmForComputers May 2012 #12
PufPuf23 May 2012 #13
edcantor May 2012 #14
Rob H. May 2012 #15
trotsky May 2012 #16
edcantor May 2012 #17
Ian David May 2012 #18
edcantor May 2012 #19
Goblinmonger May 2012 #20
Ian David May 2012 #21
edcantor May 2012 #22
redqueen May 2012 #23
MrModerate May 2012 #24
edcantor May 2012 #25

Response to Ian David (Original post)

Fri May 4, 2012, 09:41 PM

1. My response to his tee shirt message:

Fuck you and the blind bow legged goat you rode in on. And I say exactly the same thing to his face.

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Response to rrneck (Reply #1)

Sat May 5, 2012, 02:11 PM

2. You have every right to say that,

but this is a country of free speech and he has every right to express his views.

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Response to RebelOne (Reply #2)

Sat May 5, 2012, 02:22 PM

3. Sure. Is this a great country or what? nt

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Response to Ian David (Original post)

Sat May 5, 2012, 06:06 PM

4. I'd wear a shirt that says "Life is wasted without the FSM."

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Response to Ian David (Original post)

Sat May 5, 2012, 08:18 PM

5. He's free to wear the shirt

And I'm free to point out that he's an asshat.

If he truly believes the shirt's message then he's a weak human being.

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Response to Ian David (Original post)

Sat May 5, 2012, 08:18 PM

6. Yeah nice shirt, to bad your wrong..nt

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Response to Ian David (Original post)

Sat May 5, 2012, 09:25 PM

7. People should be able to wear whatever stupid shit they want!




--imm

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Response to Ian David (Original post)

Sun May 6, 2012, 03:27 PM

8. The school is encouraging community communication about this

 

There will be planned facilitated discussions with students at the school on Monday, May 7 to engage in conversations related to expressing beliefs in a complex multicultural school environment. In addition, the school board invites interested students and their families to a meeting at 7 p.m. on Monday evening at the school to have similar discussions.


http://www.fhcs.ednet.ns.ca/2012/05/updated-information/

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Response to Ian David (Original post)

Sun May 6, 2012, 05:18 PM

9. Based on the design

I wonder if he was hoping no one would notice the "without Jesus" part. (Just look at how much smaller those two words are.)

I also wonder if he'd be supportive if someone wore this to school:



Somehow, I think not.

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Response to Ian David (Original post)

Sun May 6, 2012, 06:12 PM

10. Nova Scotia doesn't have a lot of Jews. You can see why. n/t

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Response to dimbear (Reply #10)

Sun May 6, 2012, 06:14 PM

11. That makes no sense. It's where the Nova Scotia salmon comes from.

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Response to Ian David (Original post)

Mon May 7, 2012, 09:27 PM

12. "If you're a 49ers fan, you're an asshole."

Same thing.

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Response to Ian David (Original post)

Mon May 7, 2012, 10:11 PM

13. Looks like a pothead to me.

When he realized Jesus is a myth and not a personal God, he just wants to get wasted all the time.

Note R Crumb-style script on "Wasted".

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Response to Ian David (Original post)

Mon May 7, 2012, 10:52 PM

14. UPDATE FROM Nova Scotia news today...

 

'Jesus' T-shirt student taken out of school by dad
Refused to take part in religious tolerance sessions


A Nova Scotia student suspended from classes for five days for wearing a T-shirt with the slogan "Life Is Wasted Without Jesus" returned to school today wearing the same garment, but he was quickly taken home by his father.

William Swinimer, who's in Grade 12, was scheduled to attend a session for all students on how to express their beliefs in a way that is respectful to all.

But John Swinimer said he wants Forest Heights Community School in Chester Basin, Lunenburg County, to only teach the basic courses, leaving religion out of it.

John Swinimer said his son will not return to school until it gets back to teaching the basics. (CBC)
"He will not attend this school unless they are having reading, writing and arithmetic — good old-fashioned academics," he said, waving a New Testament bible. "When they're having forums, when they're having other extra-curricular activity, he will not attend that school."

Students said William Swinimer has been preaching and making them feel uncomfortable, and the shirt was the last straw so they complained.


http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/nova-scotia/story/2012/05/07/ns-jesus-shirt-student-school.html

This kid and his father seem like pretty intolerant closed minded Christians to me!!! What do you all think?

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Response to edcantor (Reply #14)

Mon May 7, 2012, 11:24 PM

15. Well, that certainly puts the lie to his previous claim...

Specifically this:

“I believe this is worth standing up for — it’s not just standing up for religious rights, it’s standing up for my rights as a Canadian citizen; for freedom of speech, freedom of religion. I don’t think this is right.”


Sounds like the 'freedom of religion' he was talking about was referring only to his OWN religion:

"It started with him preaching his religion to kids and then telling them to go to hell. A lot of kids don't want to deal with this anymore," (Katelyn Hiltz, student council vice-president) said.


It also sounds as if his dad wants him to be free to preach at/condemn his fellow students without having to consider how that might be offensive to them. He wants the school to "(get) back to teaching the basics" when that's what they've been doing this entire time--his son is the one who tried to inject something other than "the basics" into the daily lives of his fellow students!



Edited to add:

Swinimer wore the T-shirt every day to class for several weeks, even after the principal told him repeatedly to stop wearing it, before he was suspended. He said he never intended to attack anyone else's beliefs. (emphasis added)


Ri-i-i-i-i-i-ight.

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Response to Rob H. (Reply #15)

Tue May 8, 2012, 07:50 AM

16. Always helps to know more about the situation.

It wasn't about his T-shirt at all, really. He was just another fundie asshole harassing others.

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Response to trotsky (Reply #16)

Tue May 8, 2012, 08:44 AM

17. Exactly right! And so concisely said!

 

The boy and his father evidently don't know how to behave themselves, and are closed to the concept that there could be something wrong with being an asshole in a public school.

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Response to edcantor (Reply #14)

Tue May 8, 2012, 09:05 AM

18. Update on Student Who Wore ‘Life is Wasted Without Jesus’ Shirt

Update on Student Who Wore ‘Life is Wasted Without Jesus’ Shirt

<snip>

More stories are coming out about the shirt-wearing son’s behavior:

Students said William Swinimer has been preaching and making them feel uncomfortable, and the shirt was the last straw so they complained.

“He’s told kids they’ll burn in hell if they don’t confess themselves to Jesus,” student Riley Gibb-Smith said.

Katelyn Hiltz, student council vice-president, agreed the controversy didn’t begin with the T-shirt.

“It started with him preaching his religion to kids and then telling them to go to hell. A lot of kids don’t want to deal with this anymore,” she said.


The Swinimers clearly prioritize getting an education (Mike Dembeck - The Canadian Press)

More:
http://www.patheos.com/blogs/friendlyatheist/

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Response to Ian David (Reply #18)

Tue May 8, 2012, 10:52 AM

19. His father looks and sounds pretty creepy!

 

If I were that kid, I would run away.

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Response to Ian David (Reply #18)

Tue May 8, 2012, 11:09 AM

20. So poor Mr Oppressed

is actually a d-bag.

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Response to Goblinmonger (Reply #20)

Tue May 8, 2012, 11:17 AM

21. Such a surprise, isn't it? n/t

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Response to Ian David (Reply #21)

Tue May 8, 2012, 11:29 AM

22. Seen one poor downtrodden oppressed evangelical Christian...

 

you've seen them all. They all whine the same tune.

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Response to edcantor (Reply #22)

Tue May 8, 2012, 01:02 PM

23. That about sums it up. nt

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Response to Ian David (Original post)

Wed May 9, 2012, 03:11 AM

24. Yep, obnoxious to the no-fairy-stories set (of which I am a card-carrying member) . . .

BUT well within the bounds of common speech typically expected on printed t-shirts.

Ultimately, there has to be space in human interactions to allow for at least some sub-juridical assholery.

Think of it as high-visibility clothing worn by dicks so you'll know them from a hundred yards away. Heck, that's a public service as far as I'm concerned.

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Response to Ian David (Original post)

Wed May 9, 2012, 06:45 PM

25. I see no more stories in CBC or other places

 

Evidently this bigot and his idiot father don't deserve coverage anymore.

Fine with me!

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