Thursday, November 06, 2008

Ruining it for the rest of us

There are many forms of stupidity on this Earth, but no form of stupidity is as frequently, proudly, and ebulliently broadcasted as religious stupidity.

Speaking of stupid, let's talk about my girlfriend. My girlfriend is great, not only because she recognises what stupidity is and shies away from it at every possible opportunity, but also because she occasionally points me towards the kind of stupidity that I find somewhat entertaining, and says something along the lines of "Go get 'em, tiger". Before I continue with this story, it's important to note that this woman, who willingly identifies herself as my girlfriend, lives in the United States of America. Which as we all know, is the stupidity capital of the world.

Anyhow, this not-at-all-imaginary girlfriend of mine went trick-or-treating with her niece in celebration of the pagan festival, Hallowe'en, with the intention of acquiring sugary snacks from altruistic neighbours. Many of these neighbours obliged the little urchins, providing them with artificially-sweetened sustenance, but some seized the opportunity to pontificate to these diminutive-doorstop-denizens.

A colourful envelope arrived in the post today, and inside were the following documents and a card that read:

I thought you'd really, really enjoy these wonderful treats that Rosie received in her trick-or-treat bag last weekend. I grabbed them before she had a chance to look at them (Thank GOD!) [At which point she drew a smiley-face to drive-home her facetiousness - she's thoughtful like that]

Have fun tearing the people who pass these things out to shreds!

Here are the contents of the envelope, bear in mind that each one of these bears a heavy-handed religious message:

Allow me to espouse Richard Dawkins' oft-jeered position that religion often manifests itself as child-abuse for a moment. I try not to entrench myself in any position too much, but I'm very much of the opinion that distributing this insidious mental-poison to a child who is expecting (a different kind of poisonous) delicious treat is an utterly reprehensible and indefensible act.

My concern is not for the atheistic kids - they have probably been prepared for over-zealous attacks on their emotions by their rationalist parents - my concern is for those children who practice a moderate form of religion and are being targeted to embrace a fundamental, evangelical form of Christianity motivated through fear.

The inherent dishonesty of these pamphlets is astonishing. No parent could object to an apparently cute (though patronisingly simple) maze puzzle, a seemingly patriotic pamphlet fostering interest in the democratic process, or what looks like a spooky ghost story making their way into a treat bag, only to mentally molest [tabloid-style exaggeration for the fun of it] the child once they're alone with their spoils. This cowardly trojan-horse approach is reprehensible [hang on a tick - I've used that word already... Let me consult the thesaurus...] opprobrious!

Flight 144 is a particularly evil story, in which a chap who killed a guy in a drunken barfight meets two old philanthropists (who have dedicated their life to alleviating the suffering of thousands of fellow humans in Africa) on a plane that goes down. The murderer (manslaughterer?) gets to enjoy the spoils of heaven because he preached at his cellmate, whereas the elderly couple are cast into a fiery pit of some description because they didn't harp on about Jesus enough. (I will henceforth point to this example to show that Christianity doesn't necessarily equate to moral guidance 100% of the time, often getting too mired in the worshipping of idols)

I tend to yammer on about things like this for far too long, and I'm sure my feelings on the matter are somewhat evident, so how about you just erase the last 600 words from memory, and take away the summarized version, from the intrepid trick-or-treater’s father:
You have no idea what religious spoil-sports do on an otherwise great holiday for kids in costumes.

Do things like this happen in Ireland? My mother never let us trick-or-treat when I was younger, so I’ve never gone door to door for demanding sweeties like some kind of Jehova’s witness who only has "one heathen's soul" left on his scavenger hunt no idea of what kind of bullshit the good people of Ireland try to pull.


The Hangar Queen said...

I worked as a flight attendant in the US for a time and part of the job was inspecting the seat back pockets to make sure the safety info cards and yak-sack were in place.
One bitter cold,dark morning I was going through them at the start of my day and found a Flight 144 booklet in every seat.
Can you imagine being a windy passenger on a bumpy flight and finding this shite?
I inform the captain who ,no fool,spies a great chance for us to scrub the flight and go back to bed.
He called the feds and the company and said that "Religious fanatics" (true for him) had been tampering with the plane.
FBI come and fingerprint the booklets and find the person responsible in about 10 seconds flat.(all ground/flight crews are fingerprinted here).Turned out to be a thumper flightie who had brough the plan in the night before.She got the chop and a big fine.Proper order she and was lucky to stay out of jail.
Sorry about the novella.
Nice blog and good work.Keep it up.

Sully said...

It is absolutely without any exaggeration that I declare the above to be simultaneously the greatest story and blog comment I've ever read in my life!

Thanks for sharing!

The Hangar Queen said...

Ha,,remind me to tell you about the time I chased some Muslim lads around our buildings meditation room one time.

I'm a secular,humanist liberal pain in the hole and I'm proud of it.