Wednesday, September 27, 2006

JESUS HATES YOU, PART 4,581. The last post drew some commenters upset with Democratic responses to Republican outrages, specifically in the current matter of state-sanctioned torture. "I'm somewhat reluctant to pile on the Democrats," says one such, "but I do wonder: if they won't stand up for Habeus Corpus, what the hell good are they?"

Hear, hear. Though I usually remove myself from the desolate business of politics on the ground, and do not take any interest in Democratic primaries unless Al Shapton is on the ballot, I will say that people realizing what a bunch of crap candidates their Parties' machines turn out is an unalloyed good.

The Republican variety never get this, of course. Rod Dreher recently had another of his fits about feckless Republicans and the mess they've made of things, but you know he'll always vote a straight GOP ticket -- he's as much as said so: "Is that what GOP leadership comes down to, in the end? They deserve to lose. They really do. But I don't think the country deserves the Democrats, at least not the Democrats we have now."

Regular readers of Dreher will wonder why he keeps turning from the light. 'Bortion, of course; "Given that the Democratic Party cannot be counted on ever to oppose the extermination of unborn life," says Dreher in another post, it's understandable how his co-religionist colleague simply cannot vote for Democrats, ever.

This is followed by the usual handwringing about the horrible things the Republicans are doing.

This is the sort of thing that, out of all reason, makes some Democrats think they can engage fundamentalist Christians in those areas which, their studies tell them, should make them attractive to fans of the man from Galilee. And no doubt there are some few devout souls out there who may find the party of torture, corporate greed, and Macacaism a bad fit with their sincere beliefs.

But for the real face of the energized Jesus people, I go with Dreher every time: crunchy, comfy, and, anytime the teeter-totter is poised between reason and ignorance, listing leeward with the yahoos. Let's look at some of his recent posts:

As you may have heard, a German opera company made sport of Mohammed, and got shut down. People with brains might in this case find common cause with the rabid Little Green Footballs in decrying this outrage. Dreher finally does, too, but only after a lengthy and instructive demurrer:
This jackass [director] was being deliberately provocative, and to what end? So many contemporary artists think nothing of defecating on the most deeply held religious beliefs of a very great number of people. In fact, it's seen as a mark of legitimacy in their circles. There is a nasty, spiteful part of me that takes pleasure in the squirming of these artists under such circumstances. I went to see Terrence McNally's blasphemous but ersatz and boring gay Jesus play "Corpus Christi" in NYC a few years ago, on assignment for the Weekly Standard, and saw hundreds of Christian protesters peacefully demonstrating outside the theater. McNally and his supporters thought they were being so brave. One wonders what they'd do if they had to worry about Christians being as demonstrative about blasphemy as they do about Muslims. A vicious little part of me likes to see them squirm. I have to confess this.
Then he says he knows it's wrong, terribly wrong, in the manner of Mr. Davidson in Somerset Maugham's Rain. I gasp; I understand.

But an hour later, Dreher is less equivocal about Muslim shopkeepers in Brooklyn who won't sell beer -- and Christian pharmacists who won't sell birth control:
I have to admit that I admire these guys for making a stand that costs them money, for the sake of honoring their religion. Though I would be deeply annoyed if I lived in their neighborhood and wanted to buy a six-pack. Do you see any kind of parallel in principle between these men refusing for reasons of conscience to sell beer, and the Christian pro-life pharmacists?
Then, another brief, watery on-the-other-hand.

Let us be clear. For all his granola idiosyncrasies, Dreher is typical in his belief that worship of Jesus is largely about hatred of free-thinkers, beer-drinkers, non-procreative-sex-havers, etc. He tags his rants with little beg-offs because he knows the time is not yet right, but looks forward to the day when he won't have to, as any good millenarian must. His is not a God of Love but a God of Wrath, and he is very sure against whom that Wrath is directed.

It is all well and good to show fundamentalist Christians the ginormous disconnect between the teachings of their professed Savior and the actions of the Party to which their votes reliably go, but I would suggest Democrats go hunting where the ducks are: that is, among the large number of citizens who may not be enlightened, but who are not stark staring mad either.

UPDATE. Speaking of that opera, is there any subject that is not debased by the input of Ann Althouse?
Now that some Muslims have made it painfully obvious that religion-taunting is not an easy game anymore, abandoning it expresses fear, not respect for religion. And continuing to disrespect the religions that don't lash back only highlights that cowardice. Poor transgressive rebel artists! How are they to shock the middle class anymore?
As someone who has taken the lead in anti-Mohammedian blasphemy, I have to say, fuck you and your stupid Bible, Professor. Go watch some more "Project Runway."

No comments:

Post a Comment