To The Daily Sun,
I truly hate stirring the hornets' nest on this topic, as most of my peers and acquaintances are Christian and thus I do not want them to think, err, different of me. However, the recent Bible thumping of both Pat Buchanan and John Demakowski on Wednesday has my skin crawling and I could not leave it all for Mr. Jim V. to refute. I will state that this is of my own accord, so please do not rope me into any groups when writing a rebuttal as I'm pretty unique in my politics/world views.
Pat Buchanan writes about the decline of a Christian nation, citing elite universities, the media, books, movies and magazines as an "assault on Christian beliefs and morality." A social revolution brought on by listening to music and then the politics and on and on and on. I'm sorry, but simple-minded jerks like him are part of the reason why I'm agnostic.
So getting a good education, letting your imagination run wild with a few good movies, reading Harry Potter and Entertainment magazine are the reason why I lost my faith? Going to Woodstock damned all those hippies (most of whom were very peaceful people) to hell. Hmmm, good logic. Apparently sitting on uncomfortable pews in church reading the bible, going to see a Bible based play and watching Charles Heston in "The Ten Commandments" over and over is what would have really advanced ourselves as humans.
John Demakowski once questioned how I know what is morally right or wrong in life because I admittedly cannot take the Bible as the word of God. Because apparently I must be some half-wit that can only tell the difference between right or wrong if I read the story of Eve eating an apple in some mystical garden (then having children with Adam who apparently then committed incest in order to start the human race) after being told by a snake not to do it. Yeah, that makes sense.
Oh and by the way, I cannot take any of the archaic, racist, violent, sexist or fable-like stories of the Bible literally as these are only metaphors or something, but yet people like Mr. Demakowski can hand-pick the psalms or verses out that serve their purpose, like implying on an almost daily basis that we are all sinners and going to hell if we don't subscribe to his beliefs, and these are laws they live their lives by. Also their God is perfect and made man in his image, but yet man is imperfect and wrote the bible as his word (what?).
I was raised in a strict Catholic family. Spent almost every Sunday in a church until my latter teenage years. You want to know what made my Christian beliefs fade, Mr. Buchanan? Seeing other people's faiths and how strongly they believed in them. (Why is my sect right?, because I was raised this way?) Seeing my extended family torn apart by differing religious beliefs (I had an aunt I was fond of turn into a Jehovah's Witness and I've seen her twice in the last 25 years since. Her kids left when they turned 18). Having a priest whom I trusted when I was a kid turn out to be a rapist (luckily I wasn't a victim). Having the church shielding him and his ilk. Diverting funds from dioceses so that the victims could only get smaller settlements. Unfolding truths about history and how the church has altered the bible from things as little as a white Jesus (in Israel, really?) to losing whole psalms and passages that possibly revealed chinks in the armor that is Christianity. Subscribing to an infallible man in the Pope who lives in a palace made of gold. I could write a book on these realities and more, but you want to know the most substantial reason to me?
After all those hours on that pew, after all the tragedies I've endured. All the countless hours of prayers. I've always been told I would hear him talk to me, but only silence and my own thoughts have I heard back. In Mr. Demakowski from his own accord speaks with God every day and he speaks back. Hmmm... yet I'm the crazy one because I think independent, radical thoughts like two people who love each other should be allowed to be married regardless of gender.
By the way, John if you knew anything, one shred about real life, you would come to the realization that being gay is not a choice. Most people who live that lifestyle have had those thoughts, those urges since they were adolescents. If that's the case, and God makes all humans essentially, then why would he proclaim this as a sin? He created man. You're telling me that he made people gay, but also made it a sinful lifestyle? That makes no sense. Or just maybe, this was the general consensus based on fear and ignorance that was inherent to most of the population of that time period? I guess that's too much of a stretch for you.
You want to know where I got my sense of morality? Comic books, books and television. Sure the Bible stories scared me when I was a kid, but I wanted to be Spider Man, Wolverine, Daredevil, Han Solo and others. I always gravitated to the being the good guy. Saving the innocent and stopping injustice. Honor. Dignity. Justice. That's why I joined the military. To help people from tyranny. That's how I live my life today. Pat says those mediums are decaying our society. I say without them we may have been much, much worse.
Could you imagine an America without any of those things? No universities that teach diversity? No imaginative, creative shows, movies, books or magazines? Just programming that a man in a palace of gold approved? Our very fabric of what makes our country and people great would be, "Do as I say! Believe as I believe or you will be lost! You must believe in this, or else!" Nothing that pushed the envelope or was considered edgy would be allowed. Everything would be in black or white. Homosexuals would be jailed or castrated. Divorce outlawed (which would probably raise the domestic abuse I'm guessing). Women who were raped by thugs would be forced to carry and birth their babies. Any literature and media would have to be filtered through the clergy. Women couldn't be priests (oh wait, still not allowed). Ahh, the John Demokowski world. I'm sorry, but all that is making Hell seem a little more agreeable.
I'm a good person. I live life trying not to tread on other people. I love my family. If there is just one God, and he's the Christian God. I'm of the inclination that my soul will be saved for the lifestyle I live. What I really could do less of is people writing in twice a week with their inane religious analysis of how we need to change to their views or else. How our country is slipping into decay. Honestly, I think it is just the next phase of our evolution. Is it aberrant to think that 100 years from now we may think as Christians as the pagans of old? I don't know, but before you chastise me for suggesting such a thing... it's a fact that it's trending that way. More agnostics in this country than practicing Roman Catholics is proof.
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