November 15, 2006

You and James Read the News

You and James Read the News

And every time you do, you're just a little bit sorry you did.

Toys for Tots Rejects Jesus Doll

A Toys for Tots drive run by the U.S. Marines were offered 4,000 1 foot tall talking Jesus dolls to give to kids in their program. Somehow, one2Believe, the company that makes the dolls, thought that kids would love to get a talking Jesus. one2Believe is a subsidiary of Beverly Hills Teddy Bear Co.

As a government entity, Marines "don't profess one religion over another," Grein said Tuesday. "We can't take a chance on sending a talking Jesus doll to a Jewish family or a Muslim family."

Michael La Roe, director of business development for both companies, said the charity's decision left him "surprised and disappointed."

"The idea was for them to be three-dimensional teaching tools for kids," La Roe said. "I believe as a churchgoing person, anyone can benefit from hearing the words of the Bible."

The kids don't want a viral teaching tool to convert them. They want a toy to play with. Can you imagine?

On second thought, it should be a package deal. They really ought to have representatives for a bunch of major religions in a playset. The kids can do what we did with our action figures when I was a kid -- make the dolls fight it out to determine which religion will prevail!

Look, they guy even admitted it isn't a toy. It's a tool to push an agenda. Don't you love it when people use kids to further their own cause?

A Man and His Snake

A man pulled over for driving under the influence threatened the officer with a poisonous snake.

He didn't have the snake in the car with him; it wasn't some sort of pet. When they had him outside the car, he happened to see the snake and decided it would be a good idea to grab the snake, brandish it against the officers and then hightail it into the bush.

I think that qualifies right there as failing your sobriety test.

Love in the Sky

A couple of people trying to join the mile high club were repeatedly interrupted by flight attendants until finally, Carl Warren Persing, the male half of the couple, became verbally abusive.

Nothing makes a flight go by quicker then awkward snogging in the seats next to you, followed by verbal abuse when the people are denied their alcohol orders. Pure travel gold.

"If I Did It"

Qualifying under the category of "Books whose titles would be improved if you removed the first word" is O. J. Simpson's new book "If I Did It." To promote the book, he's going on TV (It's the Fox network, of course) for a two-part interview entitled "O.J. Simpson: If I Did It, Here's How It Happened."

I wasn't aware that O.J. had actually given up on that whole "I didn't do it" thing. Sure, it could merely be a callous and crass grab for attention and money, trading off the deaths of his ex-wife (the mother of his children) and her friend. But who would do something like that? Probably not the same kind of person who would actually, you know, be involved with the murders.

Correct me if I'm out on a limb here, but not too many widowers try to get on TV fantasizing about how they "would have" done it. You couldn't make a movie out of this because nobody would believe it.

Ugh. My brain hurts.

Posted by James at November 15, 2006 11:20 AM
Create Social Bookmark Links

Owch. Mine too. Awful stories. Just another day here in paradise... :-/

Posted by: Chuck S. at November 15, 2006 11:36 AM

Have you noticed that many Christians just don't *get it*??

They cannot believe that you're serious when you say you're not a Christian, and they certainly don't see their religion as being harmful in any way.

And the O.J. Simpson thing makes me want to throw up.

Posted by: Maggie at November 15, 2006 12:04 PM

Well, many Christians seem to believe that if you're not a Christian, it's because you've never heard of their religion, and if you'd just let them share the "good news" with you, it'd be a done deal. I think that's the idea behind this doll.

The guy's attitude (I saw him on the news last night, not that I think he deserves the coverage) was like "how dare you not be grateful for my contribution worth $80,000." He also argued that there are toys he might find offensive too. I think missing the point that at least those are TOYS and his propaganda tool is not a toy.

As for the 80,000, if this is truly a generous donation from the heart, perhaps he should donate the cash.

Posted by: julie at November 15, 2006 12:42 PM

Ooo, I want a Flying Spaghetti Monster doll.

Posted by: Mike at November 15, 2006 12:50 PM

On the OJ story... It gets even more bizarre when you realize that pretty much any penny he makes from this book and tour will go directly to her family memebers that successfully sued him. At least that's what I thought would happen...

Posted by: Hooligan at November 15, 2006 12:54 PM

For Mike:

Plush FSM doll

Handmade. Not on the market anywhere, as far as I can tell. :)

Posted by: James at November 15, 2006 1:30 PM

Ah, nice. I googled for one and couldn't find anything.

FSM would get a +3 on range attacks in a deity doll battle but I'm not sure if that would be enough to defeat Jesus' double-fisted pose of salvation.

Posted by: Mike at November 15, 2006 1:48 PM

Hell, a kid in Long Island was sentenced to 25+ jail based on the investigator leading him through an "If I were the one to have killed my parents, here's how I would have done it" exercise. Is the publisher touting the book as fiction or nonfiction?

Posted by: mjfrombuffalo at November 15, 2006 2:04 PM

I think the One2Believe folks were smart enough to know that by offering the toys to that particular charity, they could get boatloads of free publicity.

I realize that many people would view this as negative publicity, but hey I never heard of them before, so if it nets them a couple of sales, maybe it's a positive to them.

If they'd REALLY wanted to give away the talking Jesus dolls, it should have been easy to find a Christian charitable organization that might want them as opposed to a government-based charitable organization.

Posted by: Judy at November 15, 2006 3:49 PM

Bingo, Judy. It's the principle of "as long as they spell my name right."

I guess I helped them out by spreading the story. And it's not all negative pub. The midday radio guy was outraged that the Marines were rejecting the offer. So, there's that angle out there as well.

I knew I was giving them free publicity. Some people are going to eat this up. If that's the kind of people they want to be, supporting a company that exploits the religion and drums up controversy for business... hey, that's their choice.

Posted by: James at November 15, 2006 4:19 PM

I wonder what would happen if I let my Talking Kinky action figure take on Talking Jesus? I mean, Jesus does have the whole God's Son thing going for him, but Kinky's from Texas. Hmmmm.

Posted by: Cindy at November 15, 2006 5:42 PM

Fey, Toys for Tots say they've figured out what to do with the Jesus dolls, so they're going to accept them after all:

Posted by: Julie at November 17, 2006 9:30 AM

Think of the happy faces on some 4,000 kids when they wake up to their Christmas fantasy: creepy hippie-looking dude doll reading from the Bible.

Anyone else notice how not-middle-eastern this Jesus doll looks? I'm thinking that Jesus probably looked a lot more Jewish or terrorist-like.

This guy's got blue eyes, for chrissake.

(The first time I typed that, it came out "this goy..." Oops. Ha.)

Posted by: James at November 17, 2006 10:09 AM

Copyright © 1999-2007 James P. Burke. All Rights Reserved