y'all can go on ahead without me

Last night during dinner I was watching MacNeil-Lehrer and they did a segment on the cunts who wrote the Left Behind books. The first thing you noticed about the segment was the exaggerated deference the interviewer had to show them due to their utter lack of anything resembling a sense of humor. According to them Heaven is your reward for living a humorless life, a place where dour angels sucking lemons look down on the rabble of earth and tut-tut the crass, clueless masses.

Well, Hell is full of laughter.

The thing that’s obvious about these Evangelicals’ worldview is that it posits Hell as a place for cosmopolitans and liberal intellectual types. It is the incurious, unsophisticated, unsuccessful man’s revenge on those who they suspect are having it their own way in this life.

Dr. Lehaye, the mastermind of the series, fashions himself as a soldier in the Culture War, battling the ever-advancing moral-relativist hordes. In response to a question about the divisiveness of the Evangelical creed of with-us-or-be-damned, Lehaye said he agreed it was divisive, but that he and his followers believe that there is one right way (theirs, obviously), and that everyone may choose it or not, but has to face the consequences of that choice.

He mentioned those damned liberal relativists as if a secular humanist, say, could not possibly believe in a moral code at all, particularly without it having to be imposed from without or above. I believe that Christ, who was certainly not a dogmatist, saw that the rules we need to live a good and moral life were self-evident. It was not a question of not being able to see them, it was a question of disciplining oneself to live by them. This is why we call his students disciples.

Even evolutionary biology gives us a version of the golden rule in the theory of reciprocal altruism. Evangelicals are lazy thinkers. They say they believe in the Bible literally, when (as I’ve said before) Christ spoke in riddles, tales, and parables. The Book of Revelations, upon which the authors based their best-selling series, is the least literal in the New Testament. They have an answer for this, of course. Co-author Mr. Jenkins says that while he is a literalist, he is not a ‘wooden literalist.’ Some parts of the Bible are to be taken more literally than others.

As for the moral code of Evangelicals, its rather like their approach to interpretation, which is to say, relativistic. Thou shalt not murder a fetus, but a retarded African-American rapist or an Iraqi ‘insurgent’ thou canst. Mercy, but only towards your friends. The reason why so many sensible people don’t take evangelicalism seriously is because it is so obviously full of holes, it lacks the most basic, fundamental intellectual rigor. It is closer to a mental illness than a religion. I mean, not only is it not ‘reality based,’ or really practical, but the only coherent thing in the religion is a persecution complex that inspires hatred of the other in its practitioners. It is irrational hatred that motivates them, not those who, reasonably enough, oppose their agenda.


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