So many parodies exist today that I thought I was hearing another one. Perhaps one with a touch of cruelty in it. I was watching on television as a political candidate was described as taking their stillborn child from the hospital home, to introduce it to the other children of the family. At home, they prayed about it and had something to eat before taking it to be prepared for its interment. I thought about Weekend at Bernie’s in which a dead man was propped up in different poses to give it the look of being alive so that festivities could take place on the dead man’s property. But then later on the news, there was this real life candidate speaking with pride and dignity about what, under the law, is improper disposition and transportation of human remains. Later, this same candidate, a homophobe, would suggest that homosexuality should be punished. At length, he spat upon the separation of church and state, effectively endorsing theocracy as a replacement for American democracy. This man is a forerunner in the field of conservatives hoping to be the President of the United States.
It isn’t that I’m a technophile who rejects the concepts of Christianism; I happen to not believe in a god who watches and controls the movements of people, brings the rain as wrath or the sun as reward. That doesn’t mean that I reject the current or past existence of a Creator. The fact is that I do. The idea of a god is the only sufficient answer available to questions of the origin of the universe. A conundrum that has caused the itch of curiosity to distract mankind from the outset of coherent thought. Certainly, I accept the Big Bang and the current theories of evolution and the expansion of the universe. Within reason, they explain a lot of the mystery of development. I believe that some theory goes too far because it enters the same realms of mysticism as an involved god, causing the happenings according to ongoing whim and within a plan. Some of the quantum theories make me shake my head and sigh deeply as I listen to descriptions of computers that won’t work if you observe their output. Were I to believe in all of the rigamarole expressed by theorists, I may as well listen to it from those who place their explanations in religious context.
I have no feelings against those who embrace their religion for personal comfort. I don’t believe that anyone who promotes their religious beliefs should do so from public office because as much as I believe in freedom of religion, I believe in freedom from religion. No society should be forced into the molds of the ideas of a single sect. That totally defeats freedom of religion by forcing another religion on disbelievers. As such, it is anti-democratic.
The thing here is, I like the idea of education. I have three degrees and have studied well beyond my majors and minors in educational institutions, and I place my belief in human endeavor. I believe that humans are even more powerful than nature because we are capable of interfering with nature and bending it from its apparent path –into one less predictable. We can destroy nature and at the same time create our own forces of it. So if there is a god in charge of everything, then we are the stronger by quite some measure. Thus it pains me to see conservatives spouting christianism as their mantra, yet denigrating science and learning, which by their standard, is a creation of the god they represent. As one who enjoys technology and recognizes the tremendous learning and improvement in quality of life, the expansion of knowledge it permits, I shudder at the devolutionist desires of the so called christian right. As a movement they seek to return us to the dark ages, intoning that physical labor is more important than learning, that college is to be despised while petty laboring in service of another is celebrated.
I so believe in exactly the opposite of these ideals that I joined the military to fight against despotic thinking, never expecting it to appear so much in the mainstream of my own country that its proponents are serious candidates for our highest office. Nor would I have thought that the enlightened citizenry of a nation spreading the ideas of democracy, education and technological development would support such lunatics as might spread the seeds of anti-democracy. It is like I went to sleep and then awoke to discover that the lunatic fringe, that societal component that no thinking person could take seriously, was suddenly in charge.
It frightens me to think that so many of those who might be elevated to positions of authority were so firmly entrenched in the 17th century, desiring to bring those antiquated values into modern times. Learning nothing from history, I see so much of my country fiddling as our metaphoric Rome burns to the ground from the torches wielded by maniacs with a greater belief in fairy tales than humankind.
It’s as if they would prefer that we all became robots.