As you may have noticed, it’s been a bit quiet around here of late, what with my having let a few weeks go by with nary a tiny, microscopic hint of anything resembling a new post (of course it’s entirely possible you might not have noticed – I suppose it all depends on how observant you are and whether or not you give enough of a meerkat’s left bollock about my rants to notice when I haven’t done one). The truth is that the post I have been working on recently has proven to be a particularly tough one to write (for reasons which will become clear in due course) and so I decided to put it on the back burner until I can get my head around it enough to be able to finish it while doing the subject matter justice. In the meantime, though, rather than being all self-pitying about not being able to get a new rambling tirade out every week like the good little blogger I pretend to be, I shall instead have a massive bitching session about self-pitying, whinging fucking christians.
I’m sure there will be christians wondering why I have chosen, once again it seems, to pick on them, and it’s a reasonable enough question to ask (even though asking it does make them sound even more like a bunch of whining dickholes than they did already). I am more than happy to point an accusing finger and take the piss out of people of any faith who bang on about how terrible they have it compared to everyone else, and how no one seems to respect, or even take seriously, their intellectually vacuous beliefs enough to let them have their way all the time; yes, I am quick to call bullshit on christians who insist that they’re being marginalised and oppressed every time someone tells them they’re not allowed to bully those who disagree with them, but I am equally as swift to rip into muslims who threaten violence against those who dare question the truth of their claims that they follow the “religion of peace”. Oh, and while I think about it, you don’t get to occupy any kind of moral high ground when you build your religion around a paedophile, you pricks.
The reason I shall most likely focus on christians more than any other gang of education-dodging sky-fairy worshippers is two-fold. Firstly, having lived my whole life in the heathenistic, satan-worshipping hell-hole that we call England means that christianity is what I’m most familiar with; and, secondly, christians are probably the biggest bunch of snivelling, contemptible, self-martyring toss-bags, with perhaps the most enormous persecution complex and sense of indignant, dismissive paranoia you’ll ever see outside of a climate change deniers’ fund-raiser for struggling oil companies. No one plays the victim better than a christian and, when you consider how the entire faith centres around a single, pointless act of futile sacrifice, it makes perfect sense. Every christian imagines themselves, in some way, to be just as put upon as their redeemer, often to the extent that I wonder how they ever manage to resist coming home from B&Q one sunny, saturday afternoon with enough wood to build their own crucifixion play-set in the back garden.
Probably the most common source of all the shrill, petty moaning we hear from christians these days is the subject of homosexuality, particularly in regards to the view that not affording same-sex couples the same rights and protections that everyone else enjoys in the form of legally recognised marriages is discriminatory, bigoted, and intolerant. I shan’t spend too much time on the religious attitude towards the LGBT community, if only because I’ve already talked about it before at length and I don’t wish to repeat myself. It is, however, important to look at how the faiths in general, and christianity in particular, approach the issue of marriage equality because it is, as I said, the hottest topic in that annoying little No Man’s Land between religion and politics (a place where mealy-mouthed shite-hawks from either side meet to discuss how best to ruin it for everyone else by insisting that no, in fact, irrational, archaic institutions do have something to contribute to a modern world that is at last realising the church is completely full of shit and we’d all be infinitely better off without it).
In the past week alone we’ve had both Peter Bone, MP for Wellingborough, and Cardinal Keith O’Brien, Britain’s most senior catholic, attacking the government’s plans for marriage equality in language that might as well be represented by the sound of a chorus of incontinent toddlers, screaming, throwing their toys about the room, and loudly shitting their pants in a synchronised display of malodorous petulance. Rather than stamping his feet and wailing, “Wah wah wah! We want to get our own way and bully whoever we want”, Cardinal O’Brien dishonestly tried to paint the issue as being about the violation of the rights of children, calling it a “grotesque subversion of a universally accepted human right”, adding that it was wrong to deliberately deprive a child of a mother or father. This from an institution that has, in the past, kidnapped children of other faiths (thereby depriving them of a mother and father) in order to baptise them in case they die before voluntarily converting to catholicism. As for the grotesque subversion of rights, well, what about the right of a child not to be raped by a priest whose employer then covers it up?
O’Brien also described it as “an attempt to redefine marriage for the whole of society”, a statement that is as stupid as it is both wrong and lacking in historical self-awareness. No, Keith, we’re just trying to expand the current inadequate definition of marriage so that it can include the members of society that you and the foul club to which you belong reserve unjustified hatred for. Remember when blacks and whites weren’t allowed to marry? Who most resisted the attempt to change that? How about when marriage meant that a woman became the property of her husband, to be treated in whatever manner he deemed fit? Whose book of fairy stories still holds that up as being right and proper? Probably the most disgusting among O’Brien’s comments was one in which he equates the legalising of gay marriage to the legalisation of slavery (the abolition of which, by the way, was always opposed most vocally by religion). In describing how horrendously offensive this opinion is, the words you’re looking for are, “what an absolute fucking wanker”.
Peter Bone MP, meanwhile, referred to the plans as “completely nuts” saying, “So far as the Church of England, the Roman Catholic Church and many other faith groups are concerned, marriage is a union between one man and one woman”. Mr Bone, who clearly hasn’t realised that it’s in his own best interests for someone with a name like his to stay very fucking quiet when dealing with issues of sex and sexuality, has singularly failed to answer the question, “So what?” Who gives a flying fart in a hurricane what any church or faith group thinks marriage is or should be? Who the fuck do they think they are telling other people who they can and can’t marry? Where do they get the balls to act like we should respect their bronze-age opinions on anything? I’m not going to ask by what authority they think they can make such statements because I already know the answer (we all do), and it’s one that is no more deserving of respect than my asserting that the omnipotent pink frog which lives in my bread bin has decreed that christian marriage is a union between man and livestock.
Last Saturday I had my own run-in with christians who were making similar such unjustified proclamations and expecting people to take heed of them. They were a group I’d traded barbed words with previously on one of their many regular appearances preaching in the city centre, but this was the first time it got a bit heated (the closest we’d come before was when they tried to offer me a DVD copy of Ray Comfort’s “180”, whereupon I told them to fuck right off). On this occasion, one of their number was giving it the usual “marriage is between a man and a woman” (and other anti-gay rhetoric), so I asked her how, as a woman, she felt that her bible demands that, should her father insist, she would be compelled to marry her rapist. She dismissed the claim, and carried on ignoring me. Having promised on a previous meeting to give another of their number the details as to which passage mentioned this, I handed over several printed sheets listing every paragraph I could find which showed the bible’s contempt for women, children, sex, and how it endorses slavery, abortion, and murder. The gentleman in question was, to say the least, not impressed.
Claiming I’d taken the passages out of context (as theists always do when presented with evidence of their own book’s utter foulness), he refused to answer my request that he give me the context which justified any of the points I’d made and walked away. Moments later, I saw him trying to proselytise to a kid who must have been no more than 12 – I told him to clear off, and that he should be ashamed of himself for trying to brainwash a child. His response, one he’d made before, was the predictably lame, “you mean like evolution does?”, whereupon he proceeded to again expose his ignorance by asking questions like, “name one example of a species turning into another” (I resisted the urge to tell him that he in fact was one, looking, as he did, like the missing link between man and weasel). Things did get a little bit confrontational, as I said, and it perhaps wasn’t my finest moment when, on the matter of blasphemy, I told him that I would happily call his god a cunt if I thought it would upset him. In the end though, it was just an exchange of words at a moderately elevated volume, nothing more.
What was “more”, though, was the fact that I was engaging with a group of people who, because of their adherence to the dominant faith in this country, were able to publicly air their vile opinions with absolute protection. They were perfectly free to preach intolerance towards gays, or to tell people that they were going to burn for all eternity unless they turned to christianity, and all because the religion had long ago simply granted itself the privilege of being beyond criticism. Whenever you hear christians complaining of how they’re being oppressed or marginalised, remember the words of a woman I saw in our local Co-Op later that afternoon who, having seen my earlier exchange of words with the holy ManWeasel, said to me, “if they had been a group of muslims saying such things, they’d have been arrested” … and she was dead right; christians have been given too much respect and a free pass to say whatever the hell they like for far too long – now that things have changed and their undeserved position of privilege is under threat, they’re getting really arsey about it.
One recent example would be that of Baroness Warsi complaining about the rise of “militant secularism” and how it is a threat to christianity in this country. Before taking apart her spectacularly stupid remarks, let’s deal with the baroness herself first; Sayeeda Warsi is a muslim woman of Pakistani origin and, therefore, is essentially a walking exercise in government box ticking – gender, religion, race, a fantastic three-for-the-price-of-one deal who can be wheeled out whenever the Conservative Party need someone to express an idiotic opinion whilst enjoying a triple layer of protection from criticism. Of course, when I say, “wheeled out”, that implies that Warsi has to be prompted to open her mouth and say something stupid when, as everyone can plainly tell, she’s perfectly capable of deciding for herself to talk like a particularly virulent outbreak of cryptosporidium negotiating it’s way through the several hundred sets of unsuspecting, and rapidly churning, bowels running around at a primary school.
As for Warsi’s actual remarks, one has to first question what kind of rationale can account for a muslim woman choosing to fly out to Rome to see the CEO of Catholicism Inc. in order to complain about the diminishing power of christianity back home (no, seriously, I want to know – what in the name of Abraham’s bum hole is the thinking behind this?) Putting aside the haphazard, wrong-way-around-the-roundabout logic that prompted all of this, I want to concentrate on Warsi’s comments themselves, specifically the word “militant”. This is a term frequently used by those with power and privilege as a means to dismiss the arguments and opinions of those with whom they disagree, and it does this by underhandedly tarnishing their opponents with a reputation for aggression, or even violence, when they are more often merely strident in expressing their views. This is why, to anyone whose political leanings are distinctly towards the right, whenever women, gays, non-believers, and people of colour campaign for equality they’re referred to as militant feminists, militant homosexuals, militant atheists, and militant blacks.
Complaining that secularism is somehow having a detrimental effect on the social, cultural, and political influence of faith throughout the country is no different than a parent bemoaning the fact that their child no longer believes in Santa Claus, and how they’ve lost a significant amount of control over their gullible little crotch-fruit as a result. In addition to Baroness Warsi (who, and I want to be very clear on this so that there’s no uncertainty as to my opinion, is a complete fucking idiot) we’ve had Lord Carey, the former Archbishop of Canterbury, making pretty much the same prouncements of impending doom for the christian faith, coupled with the same ludicrous accusations of how uncontrolled outbreaks of rampant thinking have dragged persistent delusion in to a dark alley where they are are presently administering a brutal beating using facts and evidence – it’s nonsense. Granted, if we’re honest, it’s kind of what we’d like to see happen, but it’s completely unnecessary – religion has been busily beating itself half to death for years.
Every time a fatuous muppet like Sayeeda Warsi makes a statement to the effect that criticising Islam makes you a racist, or when decrepit old farts like Lord Carey complain religious freedom is being eroded by an increasingly secular society’s demands that people be treated equally, religion rips off its shoes and begins firing bullets into whichever foot isn’t currently lodged ankle-deep in its pious mouth. So what if the church no longer seems to have any say on what constitutes a marriage (and how two people of the same gender, in their opinion, doesn’t), or how governments are listening to the public instead of religious institutions on such matters? The faith industry has no business telling anyone outside of its closed-minded circle of loyal customers who they can marry or have sex with, and they certainly have no right to influence, or expect to have any input, on public policy or legislation. Whenever religion attempts to interfere in the lives of others and spew out dictates as to how people should live their lives they expose just how irrelevant to a modern progressive world they truly are.
A cursory examination of the history of religious institutions shows that, like any other profit-driven corporation (don’t be naive – religion is absolutely run for profit), the church has always acted in its own self-interest and has fought, often physically using actual swords, to protect its ideology and the (tax-free) income it generates for them. They’ve resisted the abolition of slavery, the emancipation of women, marriage equality, and any advance in scientific knowledge that threatened to expose their lies and undermine their hegemony. Over thousands of years, they have amassed an obscene fortune (usually in direct contravention of their own teachings) by exploiting the fear and ignorance of many, and they have used it to leverage enormous political influence in order to perpetuate their own, undeserved, positions of power. As it is with corporations, they have battled hard to maintain governments that serve institutions over individuals.
The gains made by secularism over the centuries have sounded the death knell for the dominance of religious institutions over our lives, shattering the privilege they have long enjoyed in the process. While there is still some way to go, the self-pitying cries of sanctimonious god-fuckers like Warsi show they have no intention of going quietly – as a result, the rest of us are forced to endure a seemingly endless stream of pious bitching about how being told that they can no longer discriminate against some of the tax-payers whose contributions to society make the church’s tax-exempt status possible is somehow a massive infringement on their religious freedom. I simply fail to recall a time when a week could pass without some privileged, self-righteous, little christ-licker whinging, without so much of a quark’s worth of irony, that they were being oppressed because of their beliefs. Perhaps they could explain to me again how it’s even remotely possible to be oppressed when you’ve got all the power and money?
You people need to shut the fuck up … right now – seriously. You don’t get to jump up and down crying, “Help! Help! I’m being repressed!” just because you’ve been told you can’t inflict your delirious, pixie-worshipping morality on the rest of us; you don’t get to coast by on our money, insulting us, degrading us, demeaning us, and trying to take away our rights; you’ve got no fucking business meddling in politics, education, culture, or any aspect of society that extends beyond the four walls of your rapidly emptying temples or, better yet, the flesh-covered skull walls of your own long-deserted temples. Don’t forget that the power you’ve abused all these years was never freely given; it was wrenched out of the people you terrified into believing your bullshit, if not on pain of death then at least on pain of eternal suffering. It was never your toy to play with, and yet you took it anyway … secularism is our way of taking it back.
Now quit your miserable whining, you obnoxious, snivelling little babies, and grow the fuck up …