You don’t even have to read the article to see how perfectly a piece like, Why can’t Negroes Understand How Awesome the GOP is? grasps the underlying point: that where any group outside of white Evangelicals is concerned (and not even all of them – see here and here), the GOP is completely out of touch with America. As Joshua Holland wrote recently on AlterNet, “right-wingers in Congress…represent a whole different country.” It’s the country of their dreams, certainly, but it is not the country in which we actually live.
It might seem strange to objective observers that arch-conservative George F. Will told Republicans on ABC’s This Week recently that “conservatism begins with facing facts,” because there is no visible evidence to support his contention. Rather, Republicans have proven themselves to be fantasy fan-boys par excellence. A scientific study even gives the lie to Wills’ claim, revealing that conservatives are more likely than liberals to twist facts in favor of their moral convictions. Imagine a liberal’s surprise. After all, it wasn’t a liberal suggesting that if a Muslim exploded a couple of bombs in Boston that all Muslims should be killed. Or a little less extreme, perhaps: if a Muslim blows somebody up, ban all Muslims from entering America. Shouldn’t the same standard apply when a Christian kills somebody?
It would help if the GOP would get with the program, meaning, with our shared reality: a place where logic must, of necessity, apply. But they don’t like our shared reality – our present any more than our past. That’s why people like David Barton make money re-writing that past. That’s why gay people are responsible for North Korea’s threatening to nuke everybody. That’s why abortion is responsible for the Boston Marathon bombing.
Their wishful, imaginary present is not supported by our past (let alone by our present), so to make the present relevant, they must re-write the past (and the present) to justify it. It’s a mess. One lie begets another. So public school textbooks teach that the Bible is history and that the Iliad and Odyssey are mythology and that many other beliefs are folklore. Even more bizarrely, science fact is relegated to “unproven” and “theory” while the Bible is held to be the indisputable, inerrant word of a God that cannot be proven to exist. And “gay rights are not equal to civil rights because being black is not a sin.” But what is sin, after all? Sin is merely “missing the mark” in the original Greek. I think most liberals would agree as to who is actually missing the mark here.
These attempts to obfuscate remind me a bit of an episode of the British comedy The Black Adder, in which one of Edmund the Black Adder’s cronies tells him that the eyes of the Spanish Infanta are “as blue as the blue stone of Galveston”:
Percy: You know, they do say that the Infanta’s eyes are more beautiful than the famous Stone of Galveston.
Edmund: Mm! … What?
Percy: The famous Stone of Galveston, My Lord.
Edmund: And what’s that, exactly?
Percy: Well, it’s a famous blue stone, and it comes … from Galveston.
Edmund: I see. And what about it?
Percy: Well, My Lord, the Infanta’s eyes are bluer than it, for a start.
Edmund: I see. And have you ever seen this stone?
Percy: (nods) No, not as such, My Lord, but I know a couple of people who have, and they say it’s very very blue indeed.
Edmund: And have these people seen the Infanta’s eyes?
Percy: No, I shouldn’t think so, My Lord.
Edmund: And neither have you, presumably.
Percy: No, My Lord.
Edmund: So, what you’re telling me, Percy, is that something you have never seen is slightly less blue than something else you have never seen.
Percy: (finally begins to grasp) Yes, My Lord.
Percy finally began to grasp the weakness of his position. Sadly, the Republicans have not, and what’s worse than being more clueless than an utterly clueless TV character? The answer is very little.
Republicans have shown at every opportunity that they are incapable of grasping such an elementary truth. Ideology forbids any such admissions. Letting logic intrude leaves a Republican open to charges of being a RINO, or “Republican in name only.” Accepting actual facts leaves a Republican open to charges of “compromise.” As in, you can’t let facts or truth play any part in repeating an ideological or doctrinal statement. So a couple of crazies who blow people up in Boston are not as they seem: they are living proof that Democrats are terrorists and should not be allowed to own guns and that gay people should not have rights. Without causality there is no reality and the GOP has shown its disdain for causality.
You can readily see how there can be no role for science (or sanity) in a Republican America, let alone America’s contentious historical record. I am thinking, of course, of our treatment of blacks, of Native Americans, of women, of workers, of religious minorities, of foreign countries who had the temerity to think they had the right to govern themselves. If you look at America’s track record in Latin America, you see an analogy with regard to the female reproductive system. Rather than being a thing in and of itself, Latin America is an adjunct to the United States, its “back yard.” In the same way, a woman (and her reproductive system) are an adjunct to man, a sort of backyard or playground for his penis and without any real purpose of its own.
Republicans like to beat people over the head with the Bible, it is true, but they also like to beat people over the head with their penises, and from where I am standing, one prospect is every bit as unsavory as the other. I mean, look, the Bible was written by a group representing about 1% of Israel’s population. They were all well-off. They all had penises. Nobody writing the Bible, Old or New Testament, had a vagina (or even a passing familiarity with one, seemingly). The Republican Party Platform compares well to this, also being written by men; men probably as unconcerned about what women might want or think as the authors of the Bible.
It would not be so bad if the GOP did not insist on forcibly sharing their mental shortcomings with the rest of us. God is punishing us for this; God is punishing us for that. I mean, if they wanted to indulge in their bizarre fantasies, we would all be fine with it, probably. I mean, they’d lose every election, for starters (no downside there!). Even with all the corporate money in the world and gerrymandered congressional districts, they’re having a hard time staying relevant. But they insist on “sharing” their “largesse” with the rest of us, almost literally at gun-point. But we can no more agree that their platform is spot on than we can agree that the earth if flat or that God makes tornadoes, hurricanes, and volcanic eruptions. We can be told that up is down and down is up, and they can even print it in school textbooks, but gravity is going to expose the lie every time.
It is less easy to expose Republican lies, particularly if it is insisted that God is the guy responsible for the effects of gravity, leaving us trapped in their nut-house. And worse, it is the way of things to roll downhill, unfortunately. It is the Republicans who like to talk about America being sodomized, but if their god (aka “God”) has his cock up the GOP’s ass, it won’t take much brainpower to realize where THEIR cock is right now. That’s right: squirm America. Feel free to scream.
Hrafnkell Haraldsson, a social liberal with leanings toward centrist politics has degrees in history and philosophy. His interests include, besides history and philosophy, human rights issues, freedom of choice, religion, and the precarious dichotomy of freedom of speech and intolerance. He brings a slightly different perspective to his writing, being that he is neither a follower of an Abrahamic faith nor an atheist but a polytheist, a modern-day Heathen who follows the customs and traditions of his Norse ancestors. He maintains his own blog, A Heathen’s Day, which deals with Heathen and Pagan matters, and Mos Maiorum Foundation www.mosmaiorum.org, dedicated to ethnic religion. He has also contributed to NewsJunkiePost, GodsOwnParty and Pagan+Politics.