Friday, December 19, 2014

Christ's Birthday? I Think Not!

  I hope you are as intrigued by this blog entry as I am in writing it. Before I proceed any further though allow me to set the stage. The information that follows is not the result of my own research, instead it is a theory proposed to me one day by Terry Rikard, the minister at the Mebane St. church of Christ. My contribution is relegated to A) editing and rewriting the information in a way that hopefully flows well and B) publishing it here on my blog.

  Was Jesus born on December 25? I believe any person who has studied the Bible at all can attest to the fact that the Bible nowhere states that Jesus Christ was born on December 25th. Through a careful study and assimilation of the scriptures though, as well as a knowledge of Jewish history, customs and traditions we can put together a clearer picture of when Christ was truly born.
  For our purposes the story of the birth of Christ begins with Zacharias (also spelled Zechariah), the father of John the Baptist. According to the gospel of Luke, Zacharias was a priest from the division of Abijah (Luke 1:5).  During the Second Temple period each of the priestly divisions (there were 24) served in the temple at Jerusalem on a rotation basis. The division of Abijah would have been in service roughly between the middle to end of Sivan or our June and ended sometime between the 19th to the 25th of Sivan (June). At some point before the end of his service in the temple the angel Gabriel appeared to Zacharias, telling him his wife Elizabeth would have a child (Luke 1:11-20).
  When Zacharias finished his service in the temple he returned home to his wife and she became pregnant (Luke 1:23-24). So from this we can deduce that John the Baptist was conceived around the end of June.
   Now let's change scenes to the tiny town of Nazareth and look at the virgin Mary, cousin to Elizabeth and fiance of Joseph. Once again Luke tells us that the angel Gabriel re-appears, this time to Mary (Luke 1:26)  and tells her she will have a son, and He will be called, “Son of the Most High.” Mary is wondering how this can be, since she is a virgin. The angel tells her, "The Holy Spirit will come on you, and the power of the Most High will overshadow you. So the holy one to be born will be called the Son of God. Even Elizabeth your relative is going to have a child in her old age, and she who was said to be unable to conceive is in her sixth month..." (Luke 1:35-37). Now if John was conceived in late June and Jesus was conceived 6 months later, this means Jesus would have been conceived around the Feast of Dedication or Hanukah, (our Christmas) or the end of December. John also tells us this Feast of Dedication is in the winter (John 10:22)  and Jesus himself tells us winter is not a suitable time for travel, (Matthew 24:20). So from this we can assume that shepherds would not be in the open fields tending their flocks, especially at night, because the temperature would likely be too cold for them to be in the open fields during winter and Luke tells us there were shepherds abiding in the field keeping watch over their flock at night (Luke 2:8).
  Now if Jesus was conceived around the Feast of Dedication he would have been born around nine months later which puts his birth at mid to late September. This timing is important because it corresponds to Succoth, or the Feast of Booths. What exactly is the Feast of Booths? Lets look at Deuteronomy 16:16:
"Three times in a year all your males shall appear before the LORD your God in the place which He chooses, at the Feast of Unleavened Bread (Passover, this is when Jesus died) and at the Feast of Weeks (which is also known as Pentecost, when the Holy Spirit was poured out) and at the Feast of Tabernacles (this is also known as the "Feast of Booths) and they shall not appear before the LORD empty-handed.”  The book of Genesis further explains 'Succoth' or 'Booths' when it says "Jacob journeyed to Succoth and built for himself a house and made booths for his livestock; therefore the place is named Succoth" (Genesis 33:17).  Succoth is another name for booths and one purpose of a booth is to serve as a shelter for livestock. Of course another name for a shelter for livestock is the more familiar term "manger." If, as this theory proposes, Jesus was born in September during the Feast of the Booths there would have been a multitude of booths, most housing livestock, available for Mary and Joseph to take shelter in just as Luke describes saying " shall find the babe wrapped in swaddling cloths, lying in a manger." (Luke 2:12).
  So, from the information presented it can be safely assumed that Christ was born in late September or there-abouts. If you believe this, and I personally do, it begs the question "Is it important?" The answer is "no." You see there are two reasons why the date of Christ's birth is not a binding event for Christians to celebrate.
  First, nowhere in the Bible is a command given, either explicit or implied, to celebrate the birth of Christ. Secondly, he importance of birthdays is greatly diminished and put into proper perspective when the Old Testament tells us "A good name [is] better than precious ointment; and the day of death than the day of one's birth" (Ecclesiastes 7:1). This doesn't mean we should not celebrate birthdays, only that it is not significant in perspective of our entire lives.
  I myself have never celebrated the birth of Christ at Christmas time, instead December 25th has always been a date my family has chosen to use as a day of celebrating family, love and friendships. Celebrating Christs birthday on December 25th as a religious holiday is erroneous however celebrating Christs birthday on December 25th as a means of teaching Christ is quite acceptable. There is a difference.
  Celebrating Christ's birthday is not a binding matter - we won't go to hell for celebrating it or not celebrating it. But we ARE commanded to celebrate his sacrifice on the cross on the first day of each week (Sunday) by partaking of the "Lord's Supper" or communion.
  One thing we can all agree on though - no matter what your standing on celebrating Christmas it is a season of joy, love and family.
  Merry Christmas!

Thursday, August 28, 2014

Fight Slavery - Defeat Liberals!

  For the life of me I cannot fathom why todays liberals and youths are so desperate to become slaves. Yes, slaves. That is the agenda the liberal left endorses. They feed the liberal minions with promises of free food, free shelter, free medical care, free phones, free this and free that. In exchange the liberal leaders achieve power and authority, and the minions are left without resource and must be told what to do. Liberals, which is a majority of the Democratic party and those who vote for Democrats are pissing on the graves of our forefathers, our patriots, our military, all who suffered for independence and equality. They want to trample on the Constitution… the very document that gives them freedom despite the fact they do not deserve it. Is this the nightmare that America has become? 

  With every day I discover some new story, new incident, new activity that shreds and destroys the fabric of freedom so many men and women have fought and died for over the past 250 years. Mr. or Ms. Liberal, are you really so inept that you need to have yourself enslaved in order to survive? Are you really that lazy? So lazy that you refuse to get up off your ass and pursue the American dream the way generations before you have - by hard work, saving money, striving to achieve something for yourself and to make the world a better place for your children? Your actions and words scream of laziness, they scream of an inability to think for yourself, the inability to make decisions for yourself, the desire to be a slave, to make sure you always have a master. They will continue to beat you into submission, to whip you with the chains of bureaucracy, to shackle you with poverty, and in the end to hang you with unfulfilled promises. 

  Now you may say this a very racist article but it is not, the degradation the liberals continue to strive to enslave us with does not recognize a skin color, it does not recognize age. The ONLY thing the liberal agenda fears is loosing your vote. It is their fear that drives them to continue to make promises they cannot keep in order to enact their plans to shred the Constitution - the very document that gives us freedom! Do you realize they want to take away your rights of free speech, freedom to demonstrate, freedom of the press, freedom to defend yourself? For those of you who are on the liberal bandwagon you are blind. The very freedoms they are attempting to take away from the conservatives and moderates will also be taken away from you the liberals. No longer will you be able to decry the injustices of government, no longer will you be able to assemble and voice your opposition to the government, to other groups or persons. No longer will the media (press) be permitted to freely criticize or advocate for anything. We decry inequality, and rightly so, but the liberal agenda will not permit you to do so as theirs will be the voice in control and that control will mean you are equal in slavery. Is this the America you really want? That is what you are pushing for. 

  As bleak a future as the liberals have created for us there is still hope. A hope that we the minions will not stand for the liberal oppression any longer, a hope that we the minions will justly rise up and with our voice and our votes will remove the slave masters from office and install men and women, Democrat and Republican, who will stand straight and tall against the forces of evil liberals who would destroy the very fabric that our unique and great country stand on - the Constitution and the Bill of Rights.

  Still there is hope.

Sunday, August 17, 2014

The trouble with our young and a solution

  All too often I have heard people express concern over the sad state of affairs in our society. The lack of respect for our elderly citizens, the ambivalence of our youth and their seeming lack of respect for authority, each other and life itself.
  Many times have I heard someone express their bewilderment and wonder at what this country has come to. They can’t believe children are doing the (bad) things they are doing. 
  I watched a video on a news show recently that showed a man in a convenience store shooting another man repeatedly. Moments later five or six other people just walk on by the man who lay on the floor fighting for life. They didn’t even bother to help. It truly is a sad time we live in. But what can we do? It is out of control. Too often I’ve heard the remark that “there is nothing I can do.”
  Friends, with a negative attitude there is truly nothing you can do. But what is worse is that with that kind of attitude YOU become a part of the problem. Isn’t it time you started being a part of the solution.
  “But,” you say, “there is no solution.”
  Ah, but I believe there is. The solution is within all of us because the solution starts with each one of us separately. The solution isn’t easy and it isn’t fast. It will take dedication and determination. It begins with “no.”
  You see, every time you as an adult allows bad behavior to go unchecked you are guilty of feeding that bad behavior - that behavior that leads to more bad behavior and so on until ultimately a man is lying in his own blood in a convenience store and people are walking by him not lending a hand.
  As children and young people fall prey to peer pressure, grow up in a single parent home, never go to church and are given no punishment for their actions the fault falls to us as adults.
  Whether as a parent or a concerned citizen we must say NO! We must demand severe repercussions for actions that fall outside the accepted lines of decency, civility and human kindness.
  We must say NO when a child or young adult disrespects authority. Whether that authority is a parent, grandparent, policeman or teacher we MUST DEMAND our youth respect authority. We must teach they don’t have to like it but they DO have to respect it. 
  We must as adults also teach by our example. Our youth must see that we practice what we preach. We also must show respect for authority, respect for our elders and respect for women. Our youth must see that we defer to the policeman who pulls us over for speeding. We may not like it but that does not mean we do not show that officer respect. 
  As I sat down to write this blog entry I had the intention of leading the reader to understand how many of our older adults, including myself, came to be instilled with the values we hold. For myself I had the triple blessing of a Christian home, a military father and the Boy Scouts. I know that may sound odd but let me explain. 
  First my parents are Christians and every Sunday morning, evening and Wednesday nights we drove about 40 minutes one way to worship services and Bible study. Yes, for a kid it got old at times, I couldn’t participate in some secular activities because they occurred at times when we were at church. You see, in my family God came first. That was how we were raised. That environment taught me morality, love, devotion and respect among many other things.
  Secondly, my father retired from the U.S. Navy. Growing up a military brat meant we moved several times as we followed my father from station to station. In that environment I learned a different kind of respect… respect for authority, for country, and for the flag. I learned that sacrifice is good and honorable and patriotism is something to be proud of.
  And lastly the Boy Scouts. I think this noble institution instilled in me the values necessary to be a good citizen and to face many of the everyday situations we encounter. From the Boy Scout motto of “Be Prepared” to the Scout pledge which elicits duty to God, to others and to self. But it is the Scout Law with its twelve tenets which I believe can be the greatest solution to our nations problems today if it were only taught to every single child as they grow. That law is this:
A Scout is Trustworthy, Loyal, Helpful, Friendly, Courteous, Kind, Obedient, Cheerful, Thrifty, Brave, Clean and Reverent.
  Such powerful words, such empowering words. You don’t have to be a scout or a boy to abide by them, any race, gender, age or religious beliefs (including atheists) can abide by them. But if you want your world to be a better place you and I need to teach them, live them and abide by them. Pass it on.

Sunday, July 20, 2014

Ode to Criddle

Criddle in my arms about an hour before she passed.
Never a sweeter dog walked the earth.
  I often wonder why it is that I seem to suffer loss more and grieve harder when a pet passes from this life than I do when a person passes on. I've had time to think on this over the years and it was driven home late last night when my beloved little Miniature Schnauzer "Criddle" departed this life while I held her in my arms and cried over her.
  I don't believe animals have a "soul" in the manner that a human does but I do believe they have something, call it a "life-force" that gives them a personality and a modicum of intelligence. I also don't believe in animals or pets going to heaven as we tend to think of it. Instead I put my faith and trust in God and believe that he will take care of them in death as he did in life. I choose to think of the example Christ gave when he talked about the birds in Matthew 6:26 when he says:
  "Look at the birds of the air; they do not sow or reap or store away in barns and yet your Heavenly Father feeds them."
  In other words it is not for us to worry about our dogs or cats when they die because God will take care of them in his way. 
  But why does their death affect me so much more than the death of an adult human? Obviously in either case there is a void in our lives once filled by that person and that animal. For me I believe the answer lies in the knowledge that animals don't live life and make decisions based on whether something is right or wrong. They don't plan their days or set goals to reach. They don't fall in love or scheme against others. What they do is make decisions based on instinct and rewards, they have no plan for life or seek to attain a goal. I don't believe they "love" as we know the word, rather they are created to be loved and instinctively respond to love (and unfortunately respond to hate too). 
  I believe dogs especially are created with an instinct to protect the "pack" or family, whether it be one person or many, because they have a highly developed instinct of bonding. 
  My point is that I feel a greater sense of loss over a dog (or pet) because they cannot make decisions for themselves of right and wrong and for that reason we as human beings are tasked with the responsibility of good stewardship to those creatures. It is our responsibility to love, care and provide for those animals we take into our hearts and lives and homes. And at the end of the day we sit back and evaluate our own behavior towards them and worry over whether we could have done something different or more to enrich their lives to a fuller extent because in the end it is truly they who have enriched our lives so greatly and enriched it so much more than we can ever repay... and so we bestow upon these creatures we call pets the greatest honor we can, we choose not to call them pets, but to call them "family."

Friday, June 27, 2014

R. I. P. American History

  I believe I have found the root of the problem in America of our citizens leaning more and more toward socialism and communism. As I was surfing news sites I came across this article on by Joshua Rhett Miller that exposes a large number of America’s top liberal arts schools do not insist on students taking courses in American History. What? How is that possible. You cannot produce students who will stand up for and believe in America without instilling in them an idea of the sacrifices made and the principles upon which our nation was built and why. Oh sure they had history in high school but it is the collegiate level, where students are encouraged to be critical thinkers and examine the depths of the events in our history, that reasoning and understanding can lead to the discovery on a personal level of the importance of the events in the era within which they now live. At the collegiate level they can discover why conservatives are up-in-arms over the governments intrusion into our privacy and why we hold that privacy to be sacred. It is at the collegiate level where the student can begin to comprehend the value and benefit to the nation as a whole of maintaining a capitalistic society. It is at the collegiate level where our young citizens can get their mind around the destructiveness of socialism and communism and why our conservative citizens ardently strive to keep those ideals out of our government.
  Our young people in college are being let loose to study trivial subjects at a time when their minds are ripe and receptive to learning. If we continue to allow them to be taught things like “History of Electronic Dance Music,” or “Decoding Disney: Race, Gender and Sexuality in the Animated Blockbuster” (both actual courses offered in lieu of American History at Bates College in Lewiston, Maine) instead of requiring them to delve into the annals of American History then we are failing the next generations.
  Teaching American History is so very important to the future of our country. Without it we are doomed to fall into oblivion when liberal forces try to remove our constitutional rights as they are actively attempting even now. “Constitutional rights.” We hear that term every day but without American History it is unlikely our children will understand why we have those rights and why they are so very important to the survival of the American way. Why it is important to have uninfringed news reporting, or giving each American the right to voice their beliefs and grievances. Why it is important to allow each of us to follow our own religious beliefs, or the importance of law-abiding citizens to maintain their right to own and bear arms. 
  As I watch the current administration in Washington trample upon the Constitution and enact policies which bring our economic freedom to the precipice of destruction I am ashamed of our universities and colleges, where once was the flame of free speech and tolerance allowed to burn ever so brightly, there now stand bastions of intolerance and nearly Stalinist silencing of the peoples voice. 

Saturday, June 21, 2014

Facts About The Democratic Party

Being a history buff I am often taken aback by the quickness and severity with which liberals, aka - Democrats, display their hatred of the Republican Party, especially with regards to equality. You see, what Democrats would have everyone believe is that they are the only ones who believe in equality, that conservatives, aka - Republicans, are and always have been hate-mongers. I find that extremely false, hateful and hypocritical. For those who may be unschooled in the history of racial equality and the two prominent political parties, allow me to present you with some facts.
FACT- Abraham Lincoln was the first Republican president of the United States. 
FACT- Historical records, including a 13 volume set of congressional records from 1872 reveal that the Ku Klux Klan (KKK) was established by Nathan Bedford Forrest - a Democrat.
FACT- Nathan Bedford Forrest, as leader of the KKK, was honored at the 1868 Democratic National Convention. 
FACT- The KKK targeted Republicans, both black AND white, and lynched 3,446 blacks and 1,297 whites between 1882 and 1964. 
FACT- Democratic legislators successfully blocked Republican efforts to pass anti-lynching laws. 
FACT- No Democrat voted for the 14th Amendment to grant citizenship to former slaves. 
FACT- The 1960 Civil Rights Act was a Republican Bill which became law after it survived a 5 day, 5 hour filibuster by 18 Democrats. The 1964 Civil Rights Act was signed into law by President Johnson, a Democrat, only after it failed to be scuttled by 22 Senate Democrats - including a Klansman (Robert Byrd) and Al Gore, Sr. (Yes - future Vice-President Al Gore's father). 
FACT- Republicans appointed the 1st black Air Force and Army 4-star generals. 
FACT- Republicans established civil rights leader Martin Luther King, Jr's birthday as a national holiday. 

  My point in all of this is to show that while the Democrats attempt to paint Republicans as evil, hateful people the truth is, if it weren't for Republicans our nations racists would still be lynching blacks every day with impunity. You see, the Republican Party is just about as much about equality and fairness as it is in fiscal responsibility, national security and protecting democracy. On the other hand liberals are all about returning to inequality. Consider taxes for a moment. If you ask a liberal if they believe in equality in taxation chances are they will say "Yes." But when you point out that tax equality means that Bill Gates would pay the exact same dollar amount as you and me - not percentage mind you but actual dollar amount - they are incensed because they by far believe the rich don't deserve what they have worked hard for and they should pay more - which is one of the most un-American positions I can imagine. 
  I'm glad Democrats no longer hold to their racist past, unfortunately they have replaced their hate for the black population with hate for American principles and the Constitution. 
  So next time you have a moment to sit and consider your political beliefs I hope you will consider that voting Republican is voting for equality and freedom, it is voting for America and the Constitution our founding fathers fought and died for it is voting against the racist philosophy which the Democratic Party endorsed and held for well over 100 years. 

Tuesday, June 17, 2014

Oh F?&k!

  Last year I braved the cold, the wind and the rain to venture down to Charlotte to enjoy the two day revelry of the Carolina Rebellion rock festival. Even though I had the foreknowledge of what to expect, as I had attended the festival before, I was still caught off guard the language - principally the use of the terms “fuck,” “fuckers,” and “mother-fucker.” Now I’m not going to sit here and write and pretend I’m some holier-than-though Christian as I myself have on occasion used the singular term “fuck” myself from time to time, generally as an expression of pain or anger and I have even begun to police the vocabulary I use at such times when I am under duress, but the commonality which accompanied the words at the festival was bothersome.
    As I reflect upon that weekend I realize how infantile it actually sounds these days. As a youth and among those of my age it was rare I heard those words, and when they were said it was generally by those who were trying to sound tough, by those I often associated with being bullies. Among adults the “F” words were mainly spoken by the enlisted military on the bases where we were stationed and among civilians by those on the lower rungs of society. As an adult myself I’m not naive enough to think that was the norm, rather the result of my parents trying to shield us from that part of life.
   Now though I live in a world where any level of society and any form of entertainment is subject to be a source of foul-mouthed language. It is a society and nation filled with people who on one hand fill up their Facebook pages with words of condolences and prayers for their friends in need, but on the other hand will spew of a slew of profanities in public and sometimes on Facebook and other social media. The hypocrisy of this isn’t lost on me. How can a person offer a prayer to God in one breath and the next be boisterous with vulgar language? It lends me to believe these people are either uneducated and don’t understand what they are doing or they are simply hypocrites. I chose to believe the former for I truly believe most people are inherently good. The Bible tells us specifically in the book of James that we should not have both foul language and good language come from our mouths: “From the same mouth come blessing and cursing. My brothers, these things ought not to be so” (James 3:10). But the writer also speaks specifically about those who cuss and at the same time profess to be religious: “If anyone thinks he is religious and does not bridle his tongue but deceives his heart, this person’s religion is worthless” (James 1:26).
   Make no mistake about it - cussing is a sin. One sin is as destructive as another (James 2:10) so using foul language is just as sinful as adultery or murder or stealing. We try to justify our sins by the consequences of them. Saying “fuck” is not going to have the same consequence as murdering your neighbor, but God will not look upon sin in any form so in the spiritual sense cussing is just as evil as murder.
   “Well,” you say, “no one can go to heaven then if that is the case.” This is where repentance and grace come into play and those are big subjects to tackle in one blog entry so for now let it suffice to say that a person who is truly repentant of a sin will actually turn away from the practice of that sin in their life. Is it easy? Absolutely not. You may repent for cussing on one moment and say a bad word an hour later but the difference will be in the heart. You will realize immediately you cussed and be sorrowful for it and again ask God for forgiveness and start again trying to live a cussing-free life. A sincere heart will continue this process until one day you realize you haven’t cussed in a while. God knows our heart and while we are going through this process his grace will cover us… but only if our heart is sincere throughout the process.
   Obviously there is a lot more to salvation than just having a pure heart and not cussing but everyone has to have somewhere to start and it might as well be with our words.
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Thank you!

Tuesday, May 27, 2014

Let Me Be Clear 2

  Political Correctness - the wussifucation of America.
  There are many things that cause me to bow my head and close my eyes in disgust but one of the most destructive trends of the past 20-30 years is the desire of Americans to sugar coat any and everything they can in order to not potentially offend someone. This trait is called "Political Correctness." 
  On the surface being "PC" (as in Politically Correct) seems innocent enough. We don't want to hurt someone by being mean or offensive. Our country has been weighed down by the pretext that everything we say must be toned down in order to make it acceptable to everyone. Or to be more accurate we try to be politically correct because the majority of Americans (and people worldwide for that matter) don't have the common sense or the desire to understand that some things, like using the word "man" is not sexist or derogatory but rather inclusive of all mankind - men AND women. Likewise people today have lost the ability to let words just roll off their back. Instead we CHOOSE to be offended, to give those who use offending words credibility. That's right, by being offended we give power to those who offend. Thus by being PC you encourage those who use offending words and stereotypes to continue doing so. 
  I can only think of a very few instances where something is so heinous that it should be banned (except in use in intellectual discussions such as this). Words such as "nigger" and "faggot" are filled with extreme hatred and have absolutely no place in any society. 
  As Americans we have the right to say what we want. As human beings we have the responsibility of choosing our words so as not to hurt others but we should also have the maturity to know and understand that we share a responsibility to not let the words and actions of others offend us. 
  To sum it up my motto is "Screw Political Correctness... But be nice about it."

Thursday, May 15, 2014

Let Me Be Clear...

I want to be clear...

  There are several issues I would like to be clear on but I’m going to start with this one, and because I don’t want to make my writings laborious to read I’m also going to separate them into different entries.
  That said let’s begin.

  I don’t believe homosexuality is ok.
  I believe in the Bible. I believe the Bible is truth. Truth does not change, ever. The Bible decries homosexuality as a sin. Period.
  But what so many people fail to see is what else the Bible says. The Bible says no sin is greater than any other sin in God’s eyes. That means if I steal something it is just as sinful as someone engaged in a homosexual act as far as God is concerned. But let’s not stop there. The New Testament is all about Love. Love of God, love of family, love for our neighbors, love for our enemies and love for sinners.  
  So how does that all tie together? Like this. You see I have friends who are gay, but that doesn’t stop me from being friends with them. Instead I try to let them know what I believe God says in the Bible about homosexuality and yet God loves them still even though he doesn’t love the sin. What can I do but follow God’s example and love them as well. And since I believe the Bible is God’s word and it is truth then I believe it is also true today because a truth does not change. Ever. Hate has no place in my life. So I do not hate homosexuals and believing homosexuality is wrong does not mean I am homophobic, it simply means I have a belief that God has said it is wrong - then, now and forever. Just as stealing something was wrong in Bible times so then it is wrong now and forever because it is a truth that stealing is wrong and a truth never changes.

Biblical passages on homosexuality:
Leviticus 18:22
I Corinthians 6:9

Thursday, May 08, 2014

Up or Down?

  A friend of mine expressed something on Facebook the other day about men leaving the toilet seat up that got me to thinking - why do women feel they are better than men and touching the toilet seat is beneath them? As a matter of cleanliness men generally will lift the toilet seat to pee instead of just leaving it down. I suppose we could just leave it down all the time but none of us have perfect aim so we lift it up because we don't want our ladies to have to come in and sit down on a pee soaked seat. You see, it's a matter of curtesy - we're thinking of the ladies when we lift it. And it is a matter of fairness that we allow the ladies to put it down. I mean is there any really good reason why only the men should have to touch the seat? 
  There is however an answer that would satisfy everyone... Install a urinal. As a matter of fact I think it should be against the building codes to build a new construction home and not include a urinal for the men (actually there are some women who are jumping on the bandwagon to pee standing up so they could benefit too).

  Of course the easiest, cheapest and most beneficial way to solve this age old problem is for the guys to just go outside and pee! Going out behind the house and peeing on the ground at the base of the house is a sure fire way to keep the weeds (or grass) at bay so you don't have to weed-eat. And since you're not installing a urinal or flushing the toilet when you're done your saving money and water. Guys, just be careful to not pee on your wife's prize petunias!