As I was accidentally browsing my infernal Facebook feed today, I came across a video on a friend’s wall. This likely raises at least one question. For example, one might ask how one “accidentally” browses their Facebook feed.
Which is totally valid and fair, since I go on about how much I hate that sunken place pretty frequently. Short answer: I hate my MacBook Air anyway, but now that Apple has banned third party apps I haven’t yet found a good newsfeed eradicator, and since I have some random stuff that we brought with us when we moved here from Berlin, I wanted to sell it in a local group.
Which is a thing that I never really saw anyone using Facebook for back in Western New York, but you know, that was 3 years ago now anyway, maybe people do that now, the fuck do I even know?
But anyway… here’s the video:
It’s cute, it’s catchy, and it raises good points. At the end of the day I think it’s usually best to just let people just choose to oppress themselves. And it’s their First Amendment right! Americans do have a right to worship whatever god they want in whatever religion they choose. And that’s just what every major religion has been doing since they were invented by old men ranting, and no one is ever going to listen to common sense as long as religious rights are protected. (I swear I’m not even a Marxist but dude had a point…)
But the message of this video also minimizes the fact that while opinions and comments about things that people are not qualified to have are espoused and proliferated on social media and this is a hot mess, they are also legislated by people who have no right to be involved in the discussion at all, even if this is not always because of their religion.
Most politicians have no idea about much more about the stuff they need to legislate than a freshman poli sci major. And they have aides to find this out, to use Google for them. But aCatholic priest is the last person who should ever be advising anyone about sex and sexuality as well.
Such Priests have chosen to live with abstinence, and they don’t have uteruses. So priests should never be commenting on birth control, reproductive healthcare, or abortion. Those are healthcare decisions, and a priest is not a doctor, unless he went to medical school before Seminary.
This is true of so many more things, from policing sexuality and legally allowing ex-gay therapy to exist, to allowing employers and family owned insurance companies not to cover reproductive healthcare, to rationalising climate change as a sign of god’s dissatisfaction with the world and the encroaching apocalypse. Religious leaders are in most cases not qualified to be an authority on any of these things, catastrophic climate change being especially prescient in a conversation where some people will believe absolutely crazy shit (as in, Apocalypse level nonsense.)
Interestingly, some of the first Americans were descendants of those who survived the last Biblical “apocalypse” that came when Anabaptists walled themselves off in Münster, Germany and listened to a schizophrenic yet literate man who went mad upon interpreting Luther’s Bible for himself in the vernacular German… those groups, the Amish and Mennonites, are still around, and still speak that German in their faith and Biblical-based legal systems: Pennsylvania Deutsch, but English settlers at the time pronounced it as “Dutch.” Coming up on Thanksgiving, people are going to be having Pilgrim and Indian parties all over the place I am sure, so it’s worth noting that the Puritans had similar views rooted in Anabaptist thought, and that the British thought it was crazy and they left so that they could teach this crap to their kids… meanwhile the Founding Fathers, though now revered as a patriotic pantheon by many American “Christians,” were like most intelligent/educated people of note throughout history, fairly areligious for their day and age… and they built the Religion thing into a document that was elastic for this reason, so that those insular communities would support the secession from mother England.
It’s much worse today to follow an idiot like Trump today than it was for the 16th Century German peasant Anabaptists: Trump is not John of Leiden, and he does seem to be experiencing neurological decline in addition to some kind of mental health issue rendering him incapable of the judgment necessary to run a country.
And yet, people listen to him despite the fact that he is probably illiterate. It’s terrible; pretty much every American adult can read better than Trump can, and yet 40% still support him somehow?