Tuesday, November 29, 2005

Never Trust Them Bible Thumpers

"I honesty believe that in my lifetime we will see a country once again governed by Christians . . . and Christian values."

"What Christians have got to do is take back this country, one precinct at a time, one neighborhood at a time, and one state at a time."

"We've learned how to move under radar in the cover of the night with shrubbery strapped to our helmets,"

"They call them extremists. We have our own names. We call them senators, congressman, governors, mayors..."

"I want to be invisible. I do guerrilla warfare. I paint my face and travel at night. You don't know it's over until you're in a body bag. You don't know until election night."

- Ralph Reed

Ralph Reed is running for Lieutenant Governor of my state of residency. He is one scary dude. I have no doubt that he was lining his pockets with the rest of those criminals in the Republican Party, but it has yet to be proven. It will be a happy day for me to see him indicted, and I am hopeful that it will be soon.

My father was a cynic. My father was a realist. My father was an intelligent-anti-intellectual. He had some really good sayings. On of my favorites (in retrospect of course) was often said to me when I’d return empty-handed from a mission to find a tool or some other necessary object to his current task saying, “I can’t find it, Dad!” He'd look at me and say, “You couldn’t find a horse-turd in a stable.” He might even say, “You couldn’t find your ass in the dark with both hands!” Some of his other favorites (which of course turned out to be true) included “You get nothin’ for nothin’ and damn little for a dollar,” and “Life is earnest, life is real.”

Then there was one that I don’t really agree with, but ranks among one of the funniest things he ever said: “I don’t like dogs. If they can’t eat it or bleep it, they’ll piss on it!”

He really did say “bleep it.” I only ever heard him use the “F” word once, and that was when a friend of my brother’s changed his oil in front of our house after my father had said he didn’t want him to do it. The guy tracked oil onto the carpet. Funny, because there were many other instances where I believe that word would have been more appropriate, but that was my father. He was really angry that day.

My mother was a devout neo-Catholic. She believed in God and Jesus and Mary, but didn’t believe the Pope was infallible. She taught me at a young age to not believe the nuns when they said that Jews couldn’t go to heaven. She said that God didn’t care what religion you were; he only cared if you were good.

My father, at least for a time was an atheist. I never heard him say it around my mother, because he didn’t like to upset her. He dutifully went off to church with her every Sunday, because he loved her and it made her happy. His mother was an old-style Italian Catholic, but his father was an atheist. When my grandfather was a boy in Sicily and his father was on his deathbed, the priests came to the house and had him sign away his property in exchange for forgiveness and a ticket to heaven.

I remember one time when I was in my 30’s, we were watching the news and they reported that a church somewhere in the south had caught fire during a Sunday morning service, and half the congregation perished as a result. The next Sunday the survivors got together at a barn and prayed for the dead, and thanked God for their lives being spared. My dad looked at me and said, “Can you believe these fools?”

Like me, he was raised a Catholic by his mother, but unlike me he fought in a war. The big one. The good one. Except it wasn’t good it all. In fact it sucked. He told me you’d have to be an idiot to believe in God after seeing what he saw during the war. I think as he got older, he mellowed a bit and started to believe in something, but he never believed in the big bad bogey-man sending people off to hell.

One of the lessons that he taught me, which to this day I have never found an exception, concerned religious people. He said something like this:

“Never trust them Bible thumpers, the ones that have this ‘Holier than thou’ attitude, always talking about Jesus. Those people are dangerous. They will either want to pick your pocket, steal your wife or molest your children. Stay away from them and never be fooled. If they are constantly talking about God and religion, they are up to no damn good.”

I loved my father, and I wish he was here today, watching these criminals go up in flames with that cynical grin on his face saying, “See, I told you. Those Bible thumpers are up to no damn good!”


Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hi Al,

Really good post. I wasn't raised going to church AT ALL. I can count on one hand how many times I went -- and it's disappointing to me -- because even though you don't care for it -- at least you experienced it to know that you don't care for it.

Your dad sounds like he was a cool dude.

8:39 AM  
Blogger Kevin Wolf said...

I got a smile out of this one, by the end. Hope that was the right response!

I think I'll have "Never trust them Bible-thumpers!" made into a wall plaque. Or at least a bumper sticker.

1:05 PM  
Blogger The Viscount LaCarte said...

I got a smile out of this one, by the end. Hope that was the right response!

You got that right my friend. I really enjoyed writing this one.

1:25 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Life is earnest, life is real.

That one's a "keeper."

Good old-fashioned horse sense is in short supply these days, and as a result, life is starting to get very real on our asses.

1:30 PM  
Blogger isabelita said...

Good vignette of your father; he reminds me of both my dad, and even more of my father-in-law.
Yup, the Bible thumpers are indeed evil hypocrites, among many other forms of that creature. The people I know who are observant, whether Christian, Jewish, Buddhist or other, don't bruit it about. They are decent, and practice their belifs peacefully and NOT for personal gains.
I intend to call them on in an increasingly public fashion: No more the polite Pagan I!

1:34 PM  
Blogger XTCfan said...

The more I study religions the more I am convinced that man never worshipped anything but himself.
—Richard Francis Burton, explorer and writer (1821-1890)

Bumpersticker seen today:
Bush Terrifies Me

faajzet, baby!

3:48 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

xtcfan: I would love to get one of those!

3:59 PM  
Blogger Eidin said...

Al, enjoyed this mucho although it is really one of the most disturbing posts I read today. Your dad sounds cool though (I like Italian men, what can I say?!)

XTC fan - that was the poi-fect quote.

12:48 AM  
Blogger Neil Shakespeare said...

That Reed's one of the scariest of 'em all. I hope your voters send this guy to the political graveyard, where he can crawl around all night with branches on his helmet, trying to convert the dead.

4:10 PM  
Blogger mikevotes said...

I think the daily show said it well.

When will the persecution of the Christians in America end. I dream of a day when we might have a Christian president. .... or 43 of them consecutively.

10:34 PM  
Blogger Unknown said...

Great post, Viscount! And so very VERY true. I am an atheist although I was raised Catholic (my parents say, "Twelve years of Catholic School down the toilet!"). I get a bit riled by the christofacists claiming they've cornered the market on morality. What b-s. I find other athiests and agnostics tend to do a LOT of the volunteering in this town, and I don't think it's any coincidence. We're humanists, and we do the dirty work, because we know that's how it gets done. Not sitting in church praying for it to happen.

At least the Catholics don't go around preaching in your face. Where I'm from, anyway. They pretty much just act like normal folk. None of that "praise jesus" this or "god'll get you" that.

I don't trust formalized religions because they are behind most of the horror and war that go on world-wide.

Anyway: Rant over. You made great points, and I'm likewise glad to see the self-proclaimed "moralists" exposed for what they really are: Liars and crooks at best, sociopaths at worst.

2:11 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I think your dad did you an injustice. It's too bad. He loved you, but apparently not your soul. And my mom always said, "You wont go to church with those hypocrites, but you'll go to hell with them?" That's too bad! It's very sad! What a bad attitude to have. No one is perfect here on this earth, no one, not even you. Yet Jesus still died for even you.

7:11 PM  
Blogger muttmutt said...

Ill take it one step further. Dont trust a christian period. Your dad was very wise for this advice, and the anonymous coward that posted is a real jerk. I was emotionally abused by christians, and because of this i am very wary of any christians

5:08 PM  

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