Cross posted @ the Atheist Oasis
“At that greatest of all spectacles, that last and eternal judgment how shall I admire, how laugh, how rejoice, how exult, when I behold so many proud monarchs groaning in the lowest abyss of darkness; so many magistrates liquefying in fiercer flames than they ever kindled against the Christians; so many sages philosophers blushing in red-hot fires with their deluded pupils; so many tragedians more tuneful in the expression of their own sufferings; so many dancers tripping more nimbly from anguish then ever before from applause." –Tertullian
As a rule, I usually have a bad attitude about my fellow citizenry. Let’s face it: they tend to be morons (hopefully, present company excluded). Between their numbness to how the rest of the world actually works, their capacity for narcissism (not exclusive to nationality, certainly), and the raging pride of anti-intellectualism, it is a monumental effort not to club some of them when they mouth outrageous stupidities.
Take Gohmert Pyle, for instance:
Rep. Louie Gohmert (R-TX) on Tuesday grilled a pastor who supports the separation of church and state, asking him why he did not share the “good news” that non-Christians were going to Hell.
At a House Judiciary Committee hearing about religious freedom on Tuesday, Gohmert told the Rev. Barry Lynn, who serves as the executive director for Americans United for the Separation of Church and State, that the Founders of the country — and Franklin Roosevelt — had often mentioned religion in their writings.
Lynn pointed out that he had received the Medal of Freedom from the Roosevelt Institute for his work supporting the freedom to worship.
“But that wasn’t awarded by Roosevelt himself?” Gohmert interrupted, before asking if the pastor understood that the “meaning” of being a Christian was to evangelize.
“Do you believe in sharing the good news that will keep people from going to Hell, consistent with Christian beliefs?” the Texas Republican wondered.
Lynn, however, disagreed with the congressman’s “construction of what Hell is like or why one gets there.”
“So, you do not believe somebody would go to Hell if they do not believe Jesus is the way, the truth, the life?” Gohmert pressed.
The pastor argued that people would not got to Hell for believing a “set of ideas.”
“No, not a set of ideas. Either you believe as a Christian that Jesus is the way, the truth, or life or you don’t,” Gohmert shot back. “And there’s nothing wrong in our country with that — there’s no crime, there’s no shame.”
“Congressman, what I believe is not necessarily what I think ought to justify the creation of public policy for everybody,” Lynn explained. “For the 2,000 different religions that exist in this country, the 25 million non-believers. I’ve never been offended, I’ve never been ashamed to share my belief. When I spoke recently at an American Atheists conference, it was clear from the very beginning, the first sentence that I was a Christian minister.”
“So, the Christian belief as you see it is whatever you choose to think about Christ, whether or not you believe those words he said that nobody basically ‘goes to heaven except through me,’” Gohmert concluded, ignoring the point about separation of church and state.
I’d really like to go down to Texas, find this guy, and slap the ever-livin’ crap out of him.
For one thing, maybe the Founders did spout off about religion a lot (being politicians, you have to pander to your constituency) – but they also meant for us to have slaves. Thomas Paine often quoted the bibble, but that didn’t stop him from writing one of the most scathing critiques of said tome, still a classic to this day.
Maybe Gohmert Pyle should’ve done some reading – but of course, being a Republican, Faux Noise isn’t just a TV show, it’s a repository of ‘facts’.
Pyle missed this little nugget, for instance:
“The traditional Jeffersonian principle of religious freedom was so broadly democratic that it included the right to have no religion at all – it gave to the individual the right to worship any God he chose or no god.” – FDR
And all of us could quote presidents as early as Washington, all the way up to Obama (oh, hey, I’ll be the Founding fathers never saw that one coming!) on the topic of SOCAS till we were collectively blue in the face, but Gohmert wouldn’t listen. It’s what Republicans do, after all. Pull facts out of their asses, and claim they’re covered in chocolate.
And really, this goes to something I’ve been saying for years: if anyone holding high office in this country holds allegiance to their religion above their oath to the constitution, they can’t be trusted to make objective decisions for the rest of us who do NOT adhere to their belief system.
And from what I’ve seen, that’s the bulk of the Republicans in office right now. Untrustworthy, narrow-minded bigots white good ole boys who cry ‘Limited government’ out one side of their mouths, while dictating what women can do with their bodies, defending 10 commandment statuary, insist that SOCAS is unidirectional, and other such affronts to the rational mind.
Obviously, evolution favors the idiot who shouts loudest, not the rational person who thinks.
Till the next post, then.