Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Torture-loving Christians

One wonders if some evangelical christians found some perverse pleasure while watching Mel Gibson's,  The Passion of the Christ.  Who knows what goes on inside of people's heads? 

 World history books drip with the blood of humans who suffered mercilessly at the hands of 'people of God.'  Were the Inquisition torturers sadists who fully enjoyed their work? Do ministers and priests enjoy the rape of children under their authority?  Did the Catholic nuns receive some odd pleasure rapping the knuckles of their students?

Torture-loving people such as these are clearly mentally deranged and belong in psychiatrist offices and/or prison cells.

Now, we read of yet another psychologically challenged knot of humans living in our neighborhoods right here in America.  They love torture; they believe in torture.  CNN reports that a recent Pew survey found that 62 percent of white evangelical Protestants say that the use of torture against suspected terrorists can be often or sometimes justified in order to gain important information.  Conversely, only 40% of 'religiously unaffiliated' people thought the same.

What is it about these odd fundamental christians?  I have a whole nest of them who virtually fly about my blog, waiting for an opportunity to attack my thoughts and beliefs and to set me 'straight on the truth.'

I've always thought that they were warped, and now it seems that my intuition is correct.  They believe in torture even though experts in the field blatantly admit that torture doesn't work.  Did torture 'work' on Jesus? Did 183 incidents of water boarding make Khalid Sheikh Mohammed reveal 'the truth?'  Facts seemingly never get in the way of those who know 'the truth.'  

I have a theory about why evangelical/fundamentalist christians are blase regarding the torture of humans: their seeming indifference to the horrors of torture, their insouciant acceptance of the practice may stem from over-exposure to the brutalities credentialed in the Old Testament during their childhood.  As children, they were forced to listen to, to read, even to memorize the   violent episodes of smiting, annihilation, and wholesale slaughter of other tribes by 'God's chosen people.'  These children soon developed a nonchalant attitude towards war, punishment, slaughter, and revenge which, no doubt, damaged their innate revulsion of such inhuman practices towards fellow humans.  

How else can one interpret the results of this survey as well as the further fact that evangelical/fundamentalist christians were some of the most vocal supporters of the preemptive invasion of Iraq back in 2002-2003?  'Smite thine enemy' - lessons learned in bible school- surely hindered many from closely examining the data presented by the Bush Administration as evidence for the need for such an invasion.  The fact that 'thine enemy' were Muslim surely ameliorated normal compunction towards bombing raids on a city of 5,000, 000 people. 

The queerly curious aspect of the belief-system of these 'christians' is their relentless touting of 'pro-life' values. Sadly and commonly, these so-called 'values' are limited to a 9-month term of human gestation.  Typically, the slap on the baby's behind is a reminder to the youngster that he or she is on their own for the duration of their lives.  These guardians of the uterus wash their hands of any further obligations because there are more uteruses which need protection.

It is up to the 'secular humanists' of America, then, to guard the rights of the newborn, to help insure food, clothing, shelter and medical care for the baby and its mother. It will be the secular humanist who will help defend the child from religious intrusion into its life.  It will be the secular humanist who fights to keep the leaders of this nation from engaging in religious wars.  It will be the secular humanist who will insist on a no-torture policy of this government.  It will be the secular humanist who will help teach the child tolerance of other cultures, other ways of life.

The evangelical/fundamentalist is too damaged from over-exposure to the cruelties of the Bible during childhood to effectively teach the subtleties and vagaries of the human spirit to the youth of this nation. This task, therefore, must be taken up by secular humanists who have not lost touch with tenderness, with compassion, with empathy for others. 

 The song, 'Onward Christian Soldiers' may be sung in churches, but ought not become part of our National Anthem.

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