Has the Prince of Peace been forcibly overthrown?

Expanded from the 12-22-2002 Daily Sparks (Nev.) Tribune

So now comes the season of second-guessing the prophets in this monster mannunkind's eternal quest to read the minds of the gods.

U.S. enviro-Christians have elevated "What would Jesus do?" from ridiculous bumper sticker to sublime consideration. Would Jesus drive a polluting rollover deathtrap like an SUV? The enviro-creatives merit a gold star for taking an abstraction down to street level and getting people to think in a new way.

But leave it to another branch of the Nazarene's club to take the debate from magnificent conundrum to a question of condoms. Over the hill in California, Gov. Gray Davis was barred from passing out presents at a Catholic orphanage because of his pro-choice position on abortion. The men in charge would have allowed him in had he signed a blood oath to evermore support a ban.

Davis and his public relations staff were too stupid to fight fire with holy water. The padre who 86'ed the guv runs a home for parentless children. Would the parson sign a blood oath to support contraception? Alas, the question was never asked and only the children were damaged.

So what else is new? How about murder by computer — in the name of God, of course.

In lawless Nigeria, a female columnist opined that the propounder of Islam would have taken one of the Miss World contestants for a wife. The newspaper office was destroyed, more than 200 people died in riots, the Miss World pageant was moved to London and the writer has gone into hiding, fearing for her life
The apologetic owners of the paper said the offending line was deleted by an editor but nonetheless made it into print because of a computer glitch. So a machine which adds zeroes and ones very fast is responsible for all those deaths. What would Mohammed have done instead?

Opportunities begging for the wisdom of Moses, Jesus or Mohammed abound. Would any of them have killed for the black goo in the ground in order to power SUVs?

In Venezuela, people lie dead as class warfare has broken out in the streets. The peasant president who advocates for the have-nots has engendered the hatred of the haves. The country has now entered the fourth week of a general strike which has stopped the country's oil exports. (Detect a pattern?)

The rioting in Caracas has CIA written all over it. The script seems eerily similar to revolutions our government fostered from Guatemala to Iran to Indonesia to Chile.

What would Jesus do? I submit he would always side with the great unwashed.

At Christmastime, we often see references to Jesus as "the Prince of Peace." Curiously, I have noted none this year. Any citations will be appreciated.

If you would become better than you are, if you aspire to the higher, several opportunities present themselves right here in River City. Starting today.

The Reno Sparks Corridor Business Association, with the assistance of the Reno Police Department and Washoe County Sheriff's Office, will conduct its Sixth Annual Christmas on the Corridor for the children living on Reno's E. Fourth Street.

I have treated the issue of the motel children of east and west Fourth Street many times over the years. There is now a second generation growing up in weekly rentals with no nearby grocery store and playing on needle-strewn parking lots.

Beginning today at 11:00 a.m., some 750 children will receive fresh- baked cookies and stockings stuffed with candies and toys. Santa and Mrs. Claus and all their helpers will go door-to-door delivering goodies. For many children living in the corridor, this will be the only Christmas they get, according to organizers.

You can make a donation of a new unwrapped toy, new clothing, or candy by contacting Gaye Canepa at the Reno-Sparks Corridor Business Association at 775-323-0220.

What would Jesus do? He would minister to Fourth Street.

PRINCE OF PEACE ALERT. Every Monday at 5:30 p.m.,the Reno Anti-War Coalition holds its ongoing peace vigil at the Bruce R. Thompson federal courthouse at S. Virginia and Liberty in Reno. For more information, go to their website at

I've seen a lot of commentary recently about the relative absence of a peace movement in this country. Not so. It takes time to grow in light of the tax-funded pro-war media machine. Vietnam war protests took years to develop into a mass movement.

Local anti-war protests will reach a new level on January 18 with the Martin Luther King Rally for Peace. It is scheduled for 12:30 to 2:00 p.m. at Manzanita Bowl on the UNR campus. The Reno Anti-War Coalition promises music, speakers and theatre. The coalition is no latecoming movement. It includes the good people of Pax Christi with whom I picketed at the federal courthouse against the 1991 Gulf War.

CHRISTMAS PRESENT SUGGESTION FOR YOUR FAMILY. Go to a video store and rent the greatest motion picture ever made, "Oh, God" starring George Burns and John Denver. It's the greatest story ever filmed because it most effectively relates the great lesson of all the holy men who ever tried to teach, and it does so with that most human trait — humor. Larry Gelbart's script is a masterwork of mirthful morality.

Hie thee out and make the holidays happy by helping someone else. As George Burns and his prophet, George Carlin, wisely advise, "take care of each other."

Be well. Raise hell. | U-News | C.O.P. | Sen. Joe Neal
Guinn Watch | Deciding Factors


Copyright © 2002 Andrew Barbano

Andrew Barbano is a 34-year Nevadan, a member Communications Workers of America Local 9413 and editor of and He hosts Deciding Factors on several Nevada television stations. Barbwire by Barbano has originated in the Daily Sparks (Nev.)Tribune since 1988.

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