3 Things More Important Than the Duck Dynasty “Controversy”

A+E Networks 2013 Upfront

So if you haven’t noticed, there’s a show on A&E called “Duck Dynasty”. Quite frankly, I don’t really know what it’s about because I saw one episode and thought it was kind of cheesy, but a lot of Christians I know like the show because the Robertson family (the stars of the show) are all Christians. Which is awesome! Well, Phil Robertson, one of the stars, gave an interview stating the Biblical position on homosexuality (plus some crude/vulgar terminology that could have been entirely avoided) and now he’s been suspended from the show.

Christians everywhere are in an uproar and a Facebook page called, “Boycott A&E Until Phil Robertson Is Put Back On Duck Dynasty” now has over 700,000 likes. I could go on, but I really think it’s a predictable narrative and ultimately, it may not matter. Christians are going to continue to be marginalized in this country and I think it’s important to remember how bad things aren’t. Consider these 3 things that are more important than this current controversy.

#3.  North Korea’s  psychotic leader is making everyone nervous

The Issue: North Korea is one of the last truly Communist nations left in the world. As such, their leadership is kind of crazy. When Kim Jong-un took over the country a few short years ago, the international community wondered if this signaled a change for the country of 24 million.

Apparently not.  Kim Jong-un recently executed his uncle who had been his adviser. Like, straight up had him killed after he had him accused of treason. Until now, everyone kind of just didn’t really take Kim Jong-un very seriously. But now that he’s acting crazier, it’s making some people nervous. Like China.

Why It’s More Important Than Duck Dynasty: Because North Korea could actually turn into a threat, politically or economically, to the US. Duck Dynasty? Not so much.

#2. Russia just bought Ukraine; citizens of Ukraine aren’t happy

The Issue: Ukraine has been involved in political turmoil and government protests for weeks now, and the country’s president just announced that he signed an agreement with Vladmir Putin of Russia that basically amounts to a government bailout.

Russia agreed to slash gas prices for Ukraine and buy 11 billion euros worth of government bonds in exchange for…? No one is really sure what Russia’s angle is, but the citizens of Ukraine aren’t buying it, as this is widely seen as a move to pull Ukraine into a tighter relationship in order to keep the small industrial country from joining the EU.

Why It’s More Important Than Duck Dynasty: Well, because it actually matters in terms of international politics. Russia wants to be a world superpower again, and that affects the whole world. Phil Robertson got suspended. Have we gotten some perspective yet?

#1. South Sudan is about to be launched into a civil war

The Issue: South Sudan became a nation in 2011 after nearly 25 years of civil war in Sudan finally ended. Now, there is political unrest in the region, and violence has been escalating in the past few days.  As EuroNews reports, “The violence pits loyalists of former Vice President Riek Machar against the administration of President Salva Kiir.”

The two forces are largely aligned with two warring ethnic groups, the Dinka tribe, which is aligned with President Kiir, and the Nuer group, which is aligned with former Vice President Machar, but there is debate on whether or not the conflict is ethnically or politically motivated. 

Why It’s More Important Than Duck Dynasty: Because a lot of people have already died, and if this gets worse, a lot more will die. This poses a major threat to Christians in the nation, because South Sudan is generally considered the more Christian nation, with Sudan in the North having a much larger Muslim population. This could be a really bad situation for the Church over there, so please be praying about it.

I don’t want to completely downplay the Duck Dynasty situation, because I do think some of what happened is unjustified. But really, in comparison to what’s going on in the word, it’s not as big of an issue as South Sudan. 

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The Cold War is Happening Again in Ukraine

If you haven’t been following the events in Ukraine, you should go check it out on Twitter. The hashtags is #euromaidan. Basically, it’s Russia vs. The West all over again and the battleground is Ukraine. Essentially, the president was going to sign an agreement with the EU but balked at the last minute when Russia threatened sanctions. So protestors gathered on the Maidan in Kyiv to protest and things have gotten interesting. I would expound with better commentary but I have to keep it short tonight. Just keep an eye on things over there…it’s going to get interesting.

3 Really Weird Stories From This Week

Roosevelt Optimus approves (unrelated to post).

Roosevelt Optimus approves (unrelated to post).

The Internet is a strange place. If you haven’t figured this out, it’s time you did (in a beneficial and productive way, of course). Every once in a while, you have to stop and look at the expanse of the Interwebernet and marvel at the completely random stuff you can find. It’s even more interesting when it’s about current events, which just proves that people are weird, not the internet. Here are three great examples of just….weirdness.

#3. China buys a twentieth of Ukraine (maybe)

Huh? China has reportedly purchased about 3 million hectares of arable farmland in Ukraine

What? If you’re uninformed, you may not realize that China has a lot of people. Like, over a billion. They consume 1/5th of the world’s food supplies but possess only 9% of the arable farmland in the world. Which poses a problem for them. So what do they do?

They buy a country. Because why not? When you need farmland, you need farmland. Of course, Ukraine is denying that 5% of their land has been purchased…but that’s a small detail. The size of the land China has bought is roughly the size of Massachusetts.

Pictured: Site of China's future community garden.

Pictured: China’s future community garden.

Read the whole story here.

#2. NASA will pay volunteers $18,000 to stay in bed for 70 days

Huh? Our great nation’s space program is looking for volunteers to do their best impersonation of an incurably lazy man. For 70 days.

What? NASA wants to figure out how much your muscles and bones will be affected by doing pretty much nothing for 2 months. They’re doing tests with simulated microgravity and want to see how the body will respond to “space-like” conditions. There’s a catch though: you have to be really crazy fit to even apply. They only want to watch healthy people deteriorate; not already deteriorated people deteriorating further.

Poor guy. He could be getting paid to stay in bed.

Poor guy. He could be getting paid to stay in bed.

Read the full story here.

#1. Pakistan had an earthquake so powerful, it created a new island

Huh? Actually, it’s kind of a tragedy because there’s a lot of people who have probably died in the earthquake. But, the 7.8 magnitude quake did apparently create a new island.

What? The island is reported to be 20 to 40 feet high and 100 feet wide. It’s roughly 350 feet off shore, and spectators actually gathered to watch it happen. Talk about bizarre. New islands are rare for earthquakes, even big ones. Another major geographic feat of earthquakery? In 2011, Japan’s earthquake shifted the whole country over by about 8 feet. 

This guy wasn't too happy about it.

This guy wasn’t too happy about it.

Read the whole thing here.

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