Don't Ask, Don't Tell


By Todd Outcalt

Since the Clinton administration, the military has been under a "don't ask, don't tell" policy with regard to gays. But the military has nothing on religion. Don't believe us? Take a look at these "don't ask, don't tell policies" that came to define the spiritual life long before Ted Haggard.

Don't ask: Are you a pro-family Republican with solid values like Newt Gingrich?
Don't tell: How many extra-marital affairs you have had while investigating the infidelity of others.

Don't ask: Have you read The DaVinci Code?
Don't tell: That you think the Left Behind series is a bunch of bunk.

Don't ask: How many seed gifts have you sent to PTL this year?
Don't tell: How much you give to your local church.

Don't ask: Have you been saved by the blood of the lamb?
Don't tell: How much violence and bloodshed you've supported through your vote.

Don't ask: Have you read Joel Osteen's book?
Don't tell: That you've read Joel Osteen's book.

Hear No Evil

Don't ask: Have you considered going to the Benny Hinn crusade for that arthritis?
Don't tell: That a hot-toddy cured your flu after you read Kevin Trudeau's book.

Don't ask: Are looks important to you?
Don't tell: That you think Joel Osteen's wife is hot.

Don't ask: Do you think Jan Crouch's hair is real?
Don't tell: That you have a wig just like it in your closet.

Don't ask: Have you read your Bible today?
Don't tell: That you haven't read the Bible since 1966.

Don't ask: Would you like to pray about that?
Don't tell: That you only know "Now I lay me down to sleep ... "

Don't ask: What do you think of the war in Iraq?
Don't tell:
What you think of the war in Iraq.

Don't ask: Could I interest you in a subscription to The Watchtower?
Don't tell: That you hate knocking on doors.

Don't ask: What's love got to do with it?
Don't tell:
That you believe love has nothing to do with it.

Don't ask: Do you watch The 700 Club?
Don't tell: That you watch The Daily Show.

Don't ask: Have you made your peace with Jesus?
Don't tell: That you don't believe in peace.

Don't ask: Do you think Ted Haggard can go straight?
Don't tell: That you once did ecstasy with Ted Haggard in the church parking lot.

Don't ask: Who are the top ten preachers in the English-speaking world?
Don't tell: That you are the best preacher in the English-speaking world.

Don't ask: Have you heard the latest news about Brittany Spears?
Don't tell: That you read The Wittenburg Door to get the news.


that calvinist doug | 04:06 pm on 5/19/2008

Todd, I wish you hadn't told me what a cynic you are.

lucie | 07:15 am on 3/14/2011

This is great! We've been talking about it on our collage website. good stuff

Aaron | 05:05 pm on 5/19/2008

It is the humorists who are doing the great spiritual work in the world. Let the heart find a few more moments of stillness and joyful peace before returning to the world where 60 million people paid money for a book they should have Left Behind.


Simon44 | 04:11 pm on 10/11/2010

Very funny conversation for me and I do not understand why some people are talking like that. Well, I have been searching something about Hailey Young and accidentally I have noticed this entry. I just wanted to say that exists various people so for one part of them this entry is vary interesting and attractive and for other it could be really boring. I respect the author and his work. Thanks a lot for him.

Questioner | 07:13 pm on 5/19/2008

Don't Ask: Are you Pro-Life?
Don't Tell: That you are against abortion and for the death penalty (or for that matter: For abortion and against the death penalty).

Prophet Lopi | 07:48 pm on 5/19/2008

The Best Article that has ever graced the Door
This is the only article on the Door

Conscienteous objector | 09:31 pm on 5/19/2008

This picture suits the armed forces. The Army is usually more interested in telling people what to do anyway. It might ask questions later.

ny guy | 09:57 pm on 5/19/2008

"Don't ask: How many seed gifts have you sent to PTL this year?
Don't tell: How much you give to your local church."

This was my fave because even if the televangelists' "sow financial seeds of faith" theology was right they are still robbing the local church blind by having people send their money to them rather than to invest it in those who are actually personally involved on the local church level. It's a crime. Local congregations are scrambling to support pastors and meet basic budgets while the big six get private jets and golden crappers.

SRebbe | 10:06 am on 5/20/2008

I've loved this one from the beginning. I was silently giggling in service when I read it...

Don't Ask: Who is my neighbor?
Don't Tell: The people who really is their neighbor.

Joe-Allen Doty, Tulsa, OK | 12:58 pm on 5/21/2008

Here's something better, SRebbe:

Don't Ask: Who is my neighbor?
Don't Tell: The people who are strangers and need my help are really my neighbors.

Remember whom Jesus said was one's neighbor? He did not say they were the people living next door or across the street. He said they were those who needed help when they could not help themselves.

Oh, Ted Haggard actually admitted to a TV news reporter in Colorado that he had been having sexual attractions toward men most his life. I don't remember seeing Haggard when I was an ORU students; but, some of my friends knew him personally. Haggard never wanted to be a preacher in the first place; but, he scripturally obeyed his human father and became one. He was not ordained as a Pentecostal nor a Charismatic denomination preacher; he was ordained the Southern Baptist Church.

Joe-Allen Doty, Tulsa, OK | 01:04 pm on 5/21/2008

I openly admit that I watch Jon Stewart's Daily Show and sometimes watch Steven Coal-bears "Coal-Bear Ray-Pour."

Some idiots, even those in the White House, believe that Colbert is a Roman Catholic very conservative right-wing Republican because of his show on the Comedy Central Cable Network.

Andy | 08:35 am on 5/22/2008

Well, actually Joe-Allen, your "idiots" are half-right (and yes, they are indeed idiots). Colbert is indeed a practicing Roman Catholic, just not the put-your-brains-in-blind-trust right-winger persona he plays on TV. "He's not a neo-con, but he plays one on TV." Part of what makes his show so squirm-inducingly funny is how so many of his guests don't seem to "get it" that Colbert is playing a character and doesn't believe or mean at least 80% of what he says; they take his stupid-ass questions and digs seriously, and some seem to really let him get under their skin. What some folks don't seem to get further is the fact that Colbert's TV persona is his way of skewering the right-wing and the neo-cons.

One of the best things I saw/heard from him was when he was interviewing Tom DeLay. Colbert asked DeLay what he felt were the accomplishments of the Republican-led Congress. On his list, DeLay mentioned (I'm not making this up) Terri Schaivo. Colbert thoroughly barbequed DeLay when he said, "Yea, nothing like practicing medicine long-distance." DeLay appeared not to get the dig, if indeed he even heard it at all. Brilliant!

Another brilliant quip was when he got into an apparently more-or-less serious theological discussion with a guest, and his guest snidely said at one point, "Well, I guess that's the answer you would get in Sunday school," to which Colbert snapped back, "I teach Sunday school, motherf*%#er!"

that calvinist doug | 03:56 pm on 5/22/2008

Andy, I love Colbert. I think his show is one of the best things on TV. That may surprise you since I'd consider myself conservative politically (notice I didn't say "Republican" necessarily). But I have to call you to task on the general tone of your post. Here's the deal: liberals consider conservatives stupid, uncaring, blah, blah, blah. I get it man.

One can be a small-government, social-conservative, generally Republican voter (mainly because it's the lesser of two perceived evils) and NOT be a moron. It is tiresome to hear otherwise for the millionth time. As for Colbert, yes, I get the persona, etc. But I also sense he lampoons the left as well. I suppose one must be careful not to see only what one wants to see.

beauty product store | 02:48 pm on 2/10/2011

It may be hilarious and funny talk, but we cannot run away from the reality these folk face and want to convey to the world. They need freedom both from pestering and pampering. Let us brood over and pass a law to stop meddling in their affair. nice post.

Anonymous | 12:52 am on 3/13/2011

Don't ask: Why are Politicians trying to make Internet companies collect state tax?
Don't tell: Because they don't understand the Internet and how much they actually lose by doing so.
Member of the best flat iron academy. We support everyone.

business valuations | 11:56 am on 4/26/2011

It is hilarious and nothing serious about spirituality of the soldiers. But soldiers are also humans. If you cannot help them spiritually, at least don't make fun of them. thanks.

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