People Get Ready

[ make levees, not war ]

Butler for mayor … of Gretna?

Posted by schroeder915 on April 15, 2006

Now that really would be ironic justice!

I’m not sure she’s getting the biggest bang for the buck with a billboard facing the West Bank Expressway, just inside Gretna, but then again, she probably doesn’t have many bucks and I’d bet the rent is cheap.

M- pointed out that she’s probably thinking she’s can reach displaced voters commuting into New Orleans. Maybe she’s appealing to some of the criminals displaced to the West Bank. Perhaps she befriended a few when she spent time in the slammer herself.

In fairness, I should say that I like Kimberly Williamson Butler.

“What?!!,” you say.

It’s true. In a previous life, I used to run into her at City Hall. She was always extremely cordial, interested in who I was, and willing to help. She struck me as the sort of person who would go the extra mile to help someone out — a “can do” type of person.

I think she was exiled from City Hall because she didn’t fit in with the boys’ club. I remember being struck by the fact that in the normal course of conducting business, there was time for things like fantasy football conversation. Now, it’s probably true that hard-working, very capable people can play games during the day in between hours of high productivity. On the other hand, it’s highly unprofessional behavior, and quite alien to those who have no interest in such nonsense, and who are simply there to do a job.

Yes, I like Kimberly Williamson Butler — as a person. I can also say, however, that in my television channel surfing, I’ve stopped a couple of times on one or another evangelical stations to see KWB being praised for doing the work of God to save the city of New Orleans. It may require the work of God to save the city, but to immodestly allow yourself to assume a messianic role is a little whacked. I know someone who was once invited to attend a service at KWB’s church. She said she’d never seen such craziness — pentecostal baptist lunatics speaking in tongues, falling on the floor, and running around the room. My friend never went back to that church. It does explain a lot about KWB though — why for example she seemed to be struck with a bolt of lightning in spontaneously declaring herself a candidate for mayor, literally on the heels of saying she was a lousy clerk of court.

Simply amazing! I love Kimberly Williamson Butler. You know, I don’t like the way she draws attention away from things we need to be talking about — serious things — but my God, what a character! She offers more of what I’ve sometimes come to think of as the “magic realism” of living in New Orleans at this particular time in history. I couldn’t have dreamt up a more interesting character!

4/16/06 update:

Butler for mayor of Disneyland (via Humid Haney, via Boing Boing), Butler for mayor of Toontown, and despite the possibility of a law suit by Disney and ongoing ridicule, the image remains on the KWB Web site.

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14 Responses to “Butler for mayor … of Gretna?”

  1. FYI – Pentecost and Baptists are not one and the same. Totally different. Not all Baptists are of the eye-rolling, hell-fire and damnation school. While most of the Baptist I know are on the conservative side, they are good-hearted people. My sister’s church is rural Mississippi fed and clothed about 10 families from N.O. displaced after Katrina. Heaven knows how they found their way to that little town.
    I’m really surprised at myself for feeling somewhat hurt by your comment – I’m sure it wasn’t meant to be offensive.
    Peace,
    TM

  2. Schroeder said

    Sorry TM.

    Would I be correct, however, in saying that all pentecostals are baptists?

    I don’t have a problem with baptists, per se. I do have a problem with charismatic churches that cross the line into personal faith, instructing people in the ways of proper worship, and what to believe.

    Catholics do it as much as do baptists. The difference in Catholicism — both its strength and its weakness — is that it has an orthodoxy that keeps expressions of faith hewn to a fairly rigid form. Baptists can say whatever they want to — pretty much whatever the preacher chooses. I like the fervor of a good baptist preacher — far more engrossing than the average Catholic sermon. There is a danger, however — the same danger I see in pentecostal churches — that a charismatic preacher may teach something that isn’t necessarily the truth, and ask parishioners to accept and act on a set of beliefs that may depart from the truth.

    My own view — the bible was written in other languages — Aramaic, translated to Greek, etc., etc. The English translation is undoubtedly missing some of the meaning. Then there’s the fact that words are imperfect expressions of meaning, open to lots of interpretation, never completely capturing the essence of reality. Just consider the word “God.” What is that? A bearded fatherly figure? Or a force for creation. How can people even begin to grasp what the meaning of the universe is — and yet, many try to do so.

    I’m personally more comfortable with an orthodox system of beliefs from which I can choose what I find useful, and discard the rest. I’m less comfortable with people who claim to have first-hand knowledge of “the truth” and who whip up a frenzied audience to accept that truth.

    I hope I make myself clear. I would guess from your reaction to pentecostals that you get my meaning? But as I said, a lot can be lost when words are used to express our beliefs 😉

  3. I was raised Baptist. We had a group of Pentecosts in our town and, to my knowledge, they are not a sect of the Baptist church but a separate religion. I know we all considered them “different” which is not to say bad. The kids I knew were nice and, believe me, endured alot of verbal bullying from some of the good ole boys.(and girls)

    As I said, I surprised myself with my reaction to your comment. Maybe the agenda of the religious right has made me sensitive that all Baptists are perceived to believe as they do. I have semi-rejected the Baptist church and haven’t been in one for years due to exactly your observations: the rigidity,feverish and sometimes fanatical quality of the preaching. A few years ago when I went to church with my parents while visiting them, I almost walked out due to the subject of the sermon which I found extremely offensive. The only thing that stopped me was respect for my parents.
    I practice my own brand of spirituality – I don’t feel I have to enter a building 3 times a week to be considered a Christian. We all know people who grace the church when required and then live their lives in a most un-Christian way.

    I believe we have the same philosophy in regard to religion or faith. However, you are so much more eloquent with words!

    Since Katrina and everything that has happend after, I have become more aware of making generalized statements. I have certainly been guilty of doing so myself many times. My promise to myself is that I will not do so anymore.

    This has been an interesting exchange. Thanks and have a great day!
    Peace,
    TM

  4. Tim said

    “It may require the work of God to save the city…”

    We should sue to make him fix what he messed up. That’s right, it’s all God’s fault anyway. He made the hurricane, he controlled the hurricane, he drowned the people.

    I wonder if you can sue God?

  5. Anonymous said

    can anyone out there tell what God is?

    is your God different than anyone else’s, in your own personal view?

    how can one detect an imposter God, and moreover, what can be done about it?

    did God ever have a mother?

  6. Schroeder said

    Sue God — civil or criminal court? Jury or not?

    Anonymous, if you’re really asking me, I personally would refrain from even choosing a word to describe what can’t be described.

    If God had a mother, he probably deserved a good spanking — or … maybe he shouldn’t have been spanked? Maybe he did bad things to get attention? Are we paying attention now? Hmmm …

  7. Sheesh…….

  8. DWL NP said

    Quote from Shroeder’s post:

    “I know someone who was once invited to attend a service at KWB’s church. She said she’d never seen such craziness — pentecostal baptist lunatics speaking in tongues, falling on the floor, and running around the room.”

    Wow, how insensitive for a liberal to make fun of someone’s religion or was that just “drama” to make your point.

    My Google search of “Pentecostal Baptist” resulted in this:

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pentecostal

    What next? A whack at all Catholics because you disagree with child molestation? Betcha Pope John Paul II knew all about it and just covered it up! Or perhaps he was just “Unaware”.

    Hell, we should have told him. I bet those damn anti-abortion gay hating conservative bishops covered that up.

    Meanwhile, let’s be more responsible, accurate and sensitive when posting.

    Thanks

  9. Schroeder said

    Well dwl np, technically it wasn’t I who described the baptists in question that way — it was a co-worker. But I did find merit enough in my co-worker’s story to post it here, so I guess that makes it a criticism.

    By the way, are all liberals uniformly sensitive to all religious practices? Is that really fair?

    Anyway, I’m just as opposed to pedophile Catholic priests as I am Baptist priests who foster belief systems that are, I think, doubtful manifestations of divine influence. Speaking in tongues, writhing around on the floor, and running around a room, are bizarre expressions of faith if you ask me. They seem to me to be more exhibitions done consciously or unconsciously to prove one’s faith for others to witness.

    Not only do I find this sort of thing bizarre, but I believe it tends toward exploitation. Think Benny Hinn making millions and living in the most expensive real estate are of Miami by laying hands on people who collapse on stage for the cameras. Would Jesus really approve of such ostentatious displays of magickry?

    I believe divinity is far more subtle, quiet, and personal.

    Your point that I may offend is well taken. I don’t mean to offend for the sake of offending, but I’m not going to withhold my views on something with which I so fundamentally disagree.

  10. DWL NP said

    Religious experiences which are as real as life to some may be incomprehensible to others.

    William O. Douglas 1898-1980

    Just omit irrelevant statements that mindlessly may hurt someone. It is only a suggestion for this country did guarantee you the freedom of speech. If only it guaranteed the freedom to think. But the Left and the Right have their thinkers; why bother?

    You should have been chastising your co-worker in this posting rather than wasting your time on someone like Butler.

    Using Benny Hinn as an example to defend your statement (or your co-worker’s) puts you on dangerous ground upon which I refuse to debate you.

    If you have a problem with Hinn, write about him. My guess is we will find common ground, and no, I am not contradicting myself.

    For now, just be a good little liberal boy and refrain from being insensitive to others so often seen by the right.

  11. DWL NP said

    Another “Schroeder” comment:

    I don’t have a problem with Baptists, per se. I do have a problem with charismatic churches that cross the line into personal faith, instructing people in the ways of proper worship, and what to believe.”

    The more I read this post and these comments, the worse it gets. I just had to come back.

    What liberal Black preacher in New Orleans has not expounded politics from the pulpit with the passion of a charismatic preacher around election time?

    He doesn’t have a problem with Baptist “per se”. I am not Baptist and I am offended. Exactly what Liberal sect are you from Schroeder? Exactly how much hatred and animosity do you have stored up?

    We have all been through hell and now we are trying to dig our way out of it. Making fun of religions accomplishes nothing. Kicking those who control the money in the balls hopefully accomplishes nothing.

    As I read through these N.O. Blogs, most; not all, are full of hatred and non productive ramblings finding fault with selective sins of the past and providing no solution for the future.

    You are dooming yourselves and making a mockery of your own politics.

  12. Schroeder said

    DWL NP:

    You said, “What liberal Black preacher in New Orleans has not expounded politics from the pulpit with the passion of a charismatic preacher around election time?”

    Precisely my point. Are you agreeing with me?

    This is why I question KWB’s ability to lead the city out of the “hell” we New Orleanians are trying “to dig our way out of.”

    You said, “Making fun of religions accomplishes nothing.”

    I wasn’t making fun of KWB’s religion — I was reporting precisely and objectively what I heard happens in her church, and reacting by pointing out how her leadership might be questioned based upon how she exercises her faith in ways that I don’t agree, and I’d guess a vast majority of New Orleanians would similarly question.

    Okay, I concede that I interpreted her messianic vision of herself as “a little whacked.” Unless she’s performing miracles (which clearly she was not as the Criminal Clerk of Court), then I don’t think an interpretation of her as a false prophet should be criticized.

    You said, “Kicking those who control the money in the balls hopefully accomplishes nothing.”

    And what is the record of accomplishment in the federal response after praising those who control the money? Ask David Vitter.

    You said that we bloggers are “providing no solution for the future.”

    I, and others, have issued repeated calls for a simple commitment to:

    1) Helping all hurricane victims to rebuild their homes.

    2) Building a Cat 5 storm protection system.

    3) Restoring the habitat of coastal Louisiana — barrier islands, beaches, marshes.

    To date, the Bush administration has made absolutely no commitment to any of these goals, instead issuing piecemeal funding requests as an afterthought.

    Based upon the Bush administration’s misguided, incompetent, negligent leadership of this nation, I’d say there’s plenty of room for lot’s more hatred.

    What would Jesus say about George W. Bush?

  13. DWL NP said

    We are in agreement on a number of issues.

    However, we did not need your take of KWB’s religion, faith healer or whatever to know she is ill. This was common knowledge well before this post.

    BTW, I am an Agnostic who just hates to see a group of people labeled because of what your co-worker saw some do. Linking them to Baptist was still escapes me.

    First they mock, then they knock. Ask any Jew.

    As for your response to my point: “Kicking those who control the money in the balls hopefully accomplishes nothing”

    I would point out the money is coming in and has come in prior to the rantings of the bloggers.

    Mayor Nagin says it’s going to be a “bonanza” down here. I hope that goes over better with the bloggers than it may on Capital Hill.

    When I point out the accomplishments of most of these left leaning blogs, you responded:

    I, and others, have issued repeated calls for a simple commitment to:

    1) Helping all hurricane victims to rebuild their homes.

    2) Building a Cat 5 storm protection system.

    3) Restoring the habitat of coastal Louisiana — barrier islands, beaches, marshes.

    That one made me chuckle. Especially accomplishment number 2 and 3.

    My group has been unsuccessful with Republican and Democrats alike for over 30 years in Coastal Wetlands Restoration. In fact, we were making little head way as late as August 20, 2005. We could sure have used some help.

    What were you doing prior to August 29, 2005?

    Bush is as guilty as Clinton and those before him. Had the events unfolded under Clinton’s watch, perhaps he could have persuaded Blanco that her state was in trouble one day earlier and saved some lives.

    However, I not going to criticize anyone because no one at any level was prepared for such an unprecedented even nor could they be. No matter what you hear, they still aren’t.

    The excuse that the poor had no money and had to stay is a crock. The only way most of these people would have left would have been under arrest.

    The only difference next time is I do believe people will get out and the city will have the buses staged for evacuation, of course the critisim will be, why so early? I can hear them now.

    I am done with this. You can have the last word.

    You can be constructive or you; and their are many who are worse than you; Ashley Morris comes to mind; sort of a leftist vulgar version of Bay Buchanan; can say what ever you want for self gratification. I see Morris even has a following and you link to her. We are so doomed.

    Freedom of speech is important but when exercised with the freedom of thought, it just seems to work so much better.

    What would Buddah say about the N.O. Bloggers?

    Enough time wasted.

  14. Schroeder said

    I’ll close with this short response.

    You said, “My group has been unsuccessful with Republican and Democrats alike for over 30 years in Coastal Wetlands Restoration. In fact, we were making little head way as late as August 20, 2005. We could sure have used some help.

    What were you doing prior to August 29, 2005?”

    That’s a little presumptuous. I’ve been a strong supporter of coastal restoration for a long time, as have other liberals whose blogs you may have read. Spend a little time in my archives to see for yourself — and that’s just what I’ve been doing as a blogger.

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