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About jonbirch

animator, illustrator, character designer, graphic designer. music producer/recording musician. co-owner of PROOST. proost.co.uk
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50 Responses to 422

  1. Chris M says:

    Haha. I tried that once. I actually tried to have a civilized discussion with the author of the blog. After a few back and forths, I think he realized that I was right– because he erased my comments and banned me. And then sent me an email telling me to “go away”.

  2. Jessica Denise says:

    haha. Love it.

  3. ron says:

    I’ve damned myself before. The funny thing is that if you continue to point out the good things they do (there are some) ;) they still can’t seem to see good in anyone else.
    Good comic.
    Do we attempt to dialogue in the hopes they’ll change?
    I think I do, because I used to be much more like that.

  4. Laura says:


    I actually know the inspiration for this one (saw your post there, but I’m not telling) and am DYING of laughter right now!!!!

  5. Will says:

    felt the same at the time. That was an odd and sad experience. Never mind

  6. AnneDroid says:

    I’d be really interested to hear folks’ definitions of fundamentalist. Myself, I’m not into labels generally but I am curious to know if I’m liable to be labelled one or not!! Is fundy in the eye of the beholder, perhaps?


  7. Carole says:

    Even more damned when they found out where you ‘lived’! :o You live and learn.

  8. Yeah Im interested like (7) too. I have a mate who blogs/writes about coming out of fundamentalism. I understand and know where he came from as I did too but why are we labeling people? I mean honestly I label people too but I don want to be labeled!? So how do I find out what/who I am. I have no idea what I am! I have always thought of myself as me (simple) but when I got confirmed last year (because I had to be) they said to me you are NOW an anglican! Secretly I am not! but thats hard to explain to a board of vocational whatisnames.

    Is there an online questionnaire I can take to find out what I am (I jest)

  9. jody says:

    hmmm, I have tried to post on one person’s site and it just never appeared – and I’m sure I conformed to all the regulations that were stipulated in order to be able to post!

    seriously, what is that about?

  10. jody says:

    aaah but dennis, there are sooo many questionnaires

    check this one


    I was *drumroll* an evangelical (no, really)


  11. ben says:

    what makes a fundamentalist? i thought it simply ment stick to the fundamentals of the bible? i dont know.

  12. Carole says:

    Yep, Jody, it seems that I, too, am an ‘evangelical’. :lol: :lol: :lol:
    I wonder what ‘the priest’ would make of that! :lol:

    I think the range of criteria in the possible answers was a little narrow. Perhaps that, in a sense, illustrates many of us mean when we use the term fundamentalist – sticking rigidly to our own set of beliefs, claiming the monopoly on truth for ourselves, failing to listen to another’s point of view. I think there are ‘fundamentalists’ in every faith, denomination (or ‘non-denomination’ come to that), political movement or school of thought.

    For the record, the definition in the Compact Oxford Dictionary:
    fundamentalism: 1. A form of Protestant Christianity which upholds belief in the strict and literal interpretation of the Bible.
    2. The strict maintenance of the ancient or fundamental doctrines of any religion or ideology.

  13. Carole says:

    Aah, Ben, that was good timing, eh? Maybe the sticking point is in agreeing a definition of what qualifies as a ‘fundamental’ of the Bible. One man’s fundamental is another man’s irrelevance.

  14. ben says:

    well this cartoon seems to take a stab at christian fundamentalists?
    according to wikipedia John Wesley was a founder. i never saw anything wrong with John Wesleys teachings.

  15. Carole says:

    I don’t know that it is having a stab at Christian fundamentalists, Ben. It may be a response to particular experiences with certain Christian fundamentalists (though the word Christian is never mentioned) – Jon may throw some more light on his motivation later. As always, the cartoon is merely a starting point for discussion.

    I don’t know enough about the subject to engage properly in debate but there are other commenters who do. I looked on Wikipedia but the page I looked at didn’t mention Wesley and claimed that the term was coined in the early part of the 20C to describe a narrowly defined set of beliefs which grew into a movement in the US Protestant community. But I don’t know how reliable Wikipedia is.

  16. ben says:

    okay yeah i read it wrong. my mistake.

  17. Susan says:

    You are banned. You are not a Christian for Christians don’t accuse brothers and sisters in Christ of being non-Christian.

    Real post from a web site

  18. Carole says:

    No probs Ben. I may well have improved my general knowledge today so all is good! ;)

  19. Carole says:

    Susan (19) – Nice! Does it even make sense? Splinters and logs spring to mind, not to mention proving yourself to be non-Christian through logical argument. :?

  20. sarah says:

    Dear All,

    Just a note to say I love you all very much but have to be away from Asbo for a while.

    You’re all lovely people, just the Lord is calling me in a different direction.

    I want to thank Jon for all your help to me, you’re a korker, and special thanks to Carole too and Robb and Subo. To Laura, Becky, Chris F and all of you, God’s Blessings to you all, his Blessing and peace, and I’ll see you around.

    Hopefully I can come back, you know how it is with God you have to follow where he leads, and I want to.

    Blessings and peace my Brothers and Sisters,

    Sarah :-( But Also :-) xxx

    love you all.

    Sas x

  21. Carole says:

    It’s been lovely ‘knowing’ you, Sas. Hope everything is good with you. We might ‘bump into’ each other again some time. Thanks for popping by to say farewell.

    God Bless,
    Carole xxx

  22. jonbirch says:

    there will always be open arms for you here sas. thanks for your many thoughts and contributions this past year. :-) will hopefully bump in to you again, but if you ever need a holiday pop to asbo to say hi. you’ll be missed.
    love and blessings, jon. :-)

  23. becky says:

    Jon – LOL – I know of one hotshot emergent church leader here in the states, who has a history of making very provocative blog postings that are clearly designed to deliberately provoke his enemies and then closing off the comments for that particular blog entry.

    What’s really hard is when the nasty comments are written about you – I’ve learned not to respond because it just escalates the problem – can’t reason with the unreasonable.

    The term “fundamentalist” originated out of the Niagara Bible Conference that published a series pamphlets titled The Fundamentals from 1910 to 1915. Prior to this, those who expressed concerned about the creeping modernity (esp. the historical Jesus crowd) were called conservatives. The term has come to be associated with those who take a literal interpretation of the bible and regard those who do not share in this interpretation as being unbelievers. Following, the 1825 Scopes Monkey Trial, this group retreated from the public sphere. With the rise of the Religious Right, this term took on a very strong political tone around issues relating to abortion, homosexuality, school prayer and the teaching of evolution in public schools.

    As we all know, this term has been applied to refer to anyone who is seen as having a very conservative belief system – though one could easily argue that one can hold very rigid liberal views (e.g., here in the states, we have environmental groups who think it’s OK to maim and even kill others in order to save trees.)

    I find terms like fundamentalist, evangelical, emergent and even Christian not helpful at times as there is such negative baggage associated with these terms. I say I’m someone who was born and raised Episcopalian who tries to follow Jesus with strong emphasis on the word “try.”

  24. becky says:

    I meant 1925 Scopes Monkey trial.

  25. jonbirch says:

    my definition is basically the same as carole’s in no.16. however… it’s a specific type of christian i’m particularly referring to. one who’ll debate nothing, knows what the answers are, is sure of everything, turns a disagreement into a war, lacks grace or any sense of humility in reference to what they believe, is rude in response to those who hold another view, is legalistic and sees things in black and white… etc, etc…

    as will pointed out no.6… this is based on personal experience of getting a bit beaten up. (by the way will, nice to see you :-) )

    annedroid… you are none of the above. so you don’t fall into the definition i’ve used by a hundred miles. :-)

  26. jonbirch says:

    cheers becky… yep that’s what i’m talking about.
    thanks for the historical stuff, very interesting.

  27. jonbirch says:

    i admire the likes of ron… who keeps channels open even though it is the hard thing to do.

  28. ben says:

    i was once told i seemed like a typical american fundamentalist because i said homosexuality was a sin. what do you think about that? i think people can use fundamentalism as an excuse for there compromised views of the biblen such as with morality etc.
    but at the same time, and i think the people you(Jon) are referring to when u talk about fundamentalism are like that crazy Westboro Baptist church in america, which treats people with homosexual tendencies like they are the only ones who need a saviour.

  29. ben says:

    man there should be an edit button!
    let me make myself clear for the above. i said that if you have homosexual tendencies and you act upon them and if you are sexually immoral in thought or deed, that is a sin, like lying or stealing or lusting over porn is a sin.

  30. Will says:

    cya sas, you will be missed.

  31. becky says:

    At least here in the States, we’ve reached and impasse where I truly believe we have to pray until we can respond in love – people like Spong on the left and Phelps on the right have created such a divide that what comes across is complete intolerance for anyone who doesn’t share their views. I get hammered by those who are tolerant when I suggest that their said tolerance doesn’t carry over to those who share different views. Somehow Christ’s greatest commandment gets lost in the white noise.

  32. ron says:

    So Jon, you are saying that a fundamentalist is one who believes they have arrived and will not grow.
    Further, they cannot get past the basic priniciples of truth and can only drink milk and are not ready for solid food.

    I think your definition is fundamentally correct. ;)

    I tend to see them as blind men leading blind men off a cliff and saying, “It’s okay, I know where I’m going.”
    (I figure they use that stuff on us all the time, why not throw it right back on them and put them on the defensive for a while)

  33. AnneDroid says:

    Sas, adieu. Perhaps I will invite myself to your place in heaven one day for a coffee! Ax

    Becky, 25. I like your self-given label a lot. And what you say at 33 is spot on.

    I studied in a liberal divinity faculty and found quite an intolerant attitude towards “evanglicals” (the category most would pigeonhole me into). Equally there was intolerance the other direction, and being young and opinionated I got sucked into that, which I’m now ashamed of.

    The point is, I always think, God is too vast to be understood by our wee brains, so we naturally latch onto some portion of the truth, which is TRUE, but we focus on it so that we miss the bigger picture, a simple example being God’s love “versus” God’s justice. Some emphasize God’s grace so much that they forget to call sin sin and get a bit TOO permissive. Others are so keen, honourably enough, to please God with their holines that they get TOO legalistic.

    I am often shocked by the tabloidy, narrow minded, prejudiced attitudes of “Christian” bloggers and am sad that Jon’s cartoon today isn’t so much a joke as a true story.


  34. jonbirch says:

    it makes me sad too annedroid. i think what you say is right.

    yup ron i am saying exactly that. however i’ve no desire to put anyone on the back foot. just want to try and see things for what they are as best i can. at the same time don’t want to poke sticks in a hornets nest.

    yeh becky… tolerance isn’t really tolerance at all if you’re simply tolerating those who agree with you, is it.

  35. Chris F says:

    #27 I agree with your definition Jon

    But then maybe you shouldn’t be talking to me – I’ve been told I’m doing the devil’s work for him!

  36. Peter says:

    Speaking as an IT person, I thought it was a prod at us, and our jargon labels! I’ll have to think of another word for that button next time I’m designing an interface:)

    Didn’t someone ask Jesus what he considered to be the fundamentals, and he said love God & love your neighbour. That would be my kind of fundamentalist.

  37. Mark Bennet says:

    Peter #38

    Would “Confess” work better?

    [or would “Pontificate” be more encouraging?]

  38. jonbirch says:

    chris f. i’ll talk to who i like. and i like talking to you. you seem to have been told the kind of things jesus would have had said to him…

    peter… love god, love neighbour, sermon on the mount… those are my fundamentals.

  39. AnneDroid says:

    Mark #39 I LOVE the idea of a “pontificate” button… I think “pontificate” is a fab word!


  40. Pingback: Cartoon of the Day | Careful Thought

  41. Robb says:

    Hey guys, just made it out of the M25 and back to civilisation! BTW, Slash rocks!! And Brixton Academy has a sticky floor!

    @ Sas – Live long and prosper ;) . Until the next time, go well!!

    Having started Generously Orthodox (one of you recommended it and I could do with a break from all the liturgy books so thanks!) we surely need to also welcome in and embrace the fundamentalist right as well as the fundamentalist left. Unfortunatly these extremities tend to refuse the generosity insisting on orthodoxt being those who agree with themselves.

    As a bunch we tend to have circles of orthodoxy (like dropping a stone into a pool) –

    1) I am truly orthodox. I am a right thinker.

    2) These people are nearly orthodox as they are close to what I think.

    3) I think some of these people may be orthodox but I am not sure.

    4) These people are heretics as they are nothing like me.

    I think that the term fundamentalist is often applied in a more over arching manner than it needs to be. Fundamentalist often means ‘I only really beleive in the first ripple’ and is often combined ‘I will shoot other members of the body first and anyone outside of the body second’.

  42. Carole says:

    Welcome back Robb. Sounds like you’ve had a good time. Pick up any tips for the band?

  43. Robb says:


    Step 1 – Become Slash.

    Step 2 – Get a recording contract

    Step 3 – World domination

    (and take something for the ache in my legs – it was a long day out in London followed by a quite traumatic time trying to stay on my feet and not be trampled to death at the gig).

    I did get some really cool shots of Canary Wharf. My friend lived just across the river – until we moved her yesterday :lol:

  44. jonbirch says:

    robbs back and fired up then! great to have you back mate! missed the wisdom and wit. :-)
    what you are saying makes sense. whenever i use the term fundamentalist i feel a bit bad, like i’m name calling… i don’t mean to. there may be those who call themselves fundamentalist that i would not be referring to in that way at all. there are those from the right and those from the left who are gracious i’m sure… my usage does not include them for starters. :-)

  45. Robb says:

    Have you ever seen those bumper stickers (I have only really seen them on t’interweb) that say “The Christian right isn’t”?

  46. Happy says:

    Peace, Sas – we’ll miss you.

    so… i just want to state for the record… i’m not a fundamentalist, and you’re all welcome to comment in my space any time you like. :) Despite its name… lol.

  47. Hee hee hee!

    I must be submissive, here we go….

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