W. David Jenkins: God Must be Mad as Hell
God Must be Mad as Hell
By W. David Jenkins III
I took a little vacation from New York last week and had the chance to watch Florida local news during all the Schiavo hoopla. Needless to say I’m glad to be back up here in the North even if I'm bluer than ever now.
Y’know, just when you think the Republicans have gone as low as they can go, they manage to eke out yet one more example of their audacity. Once again, they've come to the forefront beating their drums and thumping their chests to play politics with what should have been a personal and private matter. And of course, they were joined by their cohorts in the ranks of the whacked-out religious right. One of those righteous yahoos happened to be somebody I’m a little too familiar with.
I guess I shouldn’t have been surprised when local anti-hero (depending on who you talk to around here) Randall Terry’s mug appeared on the television. Let’s face it, Randy hasn’t had much exposure lately, not since his wife and church gave him the boot for having an affair a few years back. Of course, this was shortly after he had put all of his belongings in his wife’s name so he could file for bankruptcy to avoid paying the multiple fines he’d racked up from his Operation Rescue days. How’s that for “moral values?”
I have to admit, it’s kind of strange seeing him on national television because I remember Randy when he auditioned for a band I was in twenty-five years ago, back when he was just a Shaklee “salesman” who played crappy guitar. He tried selling used cars soon after that, which begs the question; would you buy a religion from this man? Being familiar with Randy’s history as a “local boy”, it kind of makes me wonder just who these other religious mouthpieces really are. But, I digress.
The Terri Schiavo case became bigger “news” than it ever should have been. Once again the conservative politicos in D.C. managed to turn a heartbreaking situation into a circus hopefully in order to capitalize politically. GOP aides even circulated a memo to congressional conservatives stating that sticking their noses into Schiavo’s business would be advantageous for them with the Cherry Pickin’ Christians because the case was a “great political issue.” How positively disgusting!
Of course, the conservatives are feigning ignorance about the talking points memo – “Oh, we would never do such a thing!” Uh-huh, sure guys – since when? Think back to your purple fingers during the State of the Union speech.
In a fully transparent effort to pander to the religious right — seeing as they haven’t a chance just yet in changing the Constitution to ban gay marriage like they promised — the shameless right wing members discarded any respect for states rights or the rights of the individual or the rule of law in order to exploit the pain of some family they couldn’t care less about, just to make a political point. Apparently, state’s rights are all well and fine to these particular conservatives — just as long as those states in question are in agreement with the far-right ideology that infests D.C. these days. But the Bush kissers out there couldn’t be happier.
Just how do these people live with the outrage and the hypocrisy? There has got to be more of a reason other than their daily ingestion of Fox “news” or the N.Y. Post. And you can’t just say that all conservatives or evangelicals are stupid or beyond help or “divorced from reality” (I know, I said it again) because there are some people out there who are politically conservative and or “born again” who are decent people at heart. But, for some reason, they’re either incapable or unwilling to come to grips with the fact that not only have they bet on the wrong horse, and that this mindless religious Republican monster is running in the wrong direction.
One of the most glaring contradictions regarding the Cherry Pickers’ position in all this mess is that they seemed to be denying Ms. Schiavo the very promise that is the basis of their belief — everlasting life, eternal peace and to be with God. Now, weigh that against “convalescing” in a nursing home for fifteen years while being unable to independently tend to your most basic needs. Not to mention that the majority of her bills recently were being paid for by Medicare – one of those dastardly “entitlement programs” that Tom DeLay and the other Schiavo “supporters” in Congress are doing their best to destroy. Go figure.
Another thing which struck me as strange was this; aren’t these the same people who are obsessed with preserving the “sanctity of marriage?” The very same people who are terrified of Bob marrying Ted and Carol marrying Alice are the same folks who were hell-bent on stripping Michael Schiavo of his rights as Terri’s husband. He was portrayed by these “Christians” as a liar who was simply out to cash in on the huge settlement won on his wife’s behalf years ago (even though her medical expenses had killed off all but about 50 grand).
Then there was the nut job in North Carolina who offered $250,000 for Mr. Schiavo’s death along with an additional $50,000 for the death of the judge responsible for ordering the removal of Terri’s feeding tube. Of course, let’s not forget about the guy from Illinois who was busted in Florida for trying to steal a gun in order to “rescue Terri.” You just gotta love that moral values crowd.
So much for the sanctity of life.
Of course our alleged “Christian prez” was willing to interrupt his vacation just long enough to score some political points with his flock before he rushed back to his “Saving Social Security” B.S. Tour. Kind of makes you wonder why Bush didn’t interrupt another vacation when he received a PDB (Presidential Daily Briefing) titled “Osama Determined to Strike in the US” a few years ago. Must not have been deemed as urgent as it was to override a state’s rights issue in order to pander to one’s base — that would be my guess. But what really galls me is that this is the same guy who signed into law (as governor) a bill which took the life of a six-month-old baby in Texas the week before — against his mother’s wishes. Didn’t see any Christians outside that hospital, did you?
The debacle in Florida looked like a cross between a sanctified lynch mob and a kind of Aashurah for Christians as they went from flailing themselves over their losses at the hands of the courts to making threats against those who stood in their way to “save” a woman who is finally at peace — in spite of their frenzied, much televised efforts. Of course Tom DeLay couldn’t resist putting himself in further hot water when he stated in the aftermath of Terri’s death that “The time will come for the men responsible for this to answer for their behavior.” But that one didn’t go over too well with his peers in Congress who reminded him (after the polls came out) that threatening a federal judge is a “no-no.”
Then, as if on cue, Sen. John Cornyn opened his big yapper in an effort to somehow defend the violence against federal judges.
To go back and look closely at these gratuitous examples of “Christians” behaving badly makes one wonder if God is up there looking for a good sturdy switch to welcome this right-wing brat pack when they end up having to answer to Him/Her someday. I’m not trying to be presumptuous but I can’t find it written anywhere that hypocrisy, revenge, pandering and threats are examples of righteousness — even if done in the name of “God.”
Makes me think that some of these folks need to get off the streets and go back into their churches — and stay there for a long, long time.