From my Writing Room
Copyright © 2020 by Uwe Bahr
If churches tell people how to vote, then these churches should be taxed. They invest in the stock market from their sheep’s tithing and own property worth more than 600 billion free of tax. At the same time, Joe Schmo toiling for Walmart has to pay his share into the coffers, thereby subsidizing the heavenly phrase mongers and their Sunday morning story time. According to a study from the University of Tampa, poverty in the United States could be eliminated if religious institutions would not be granted a pass on taxes.
“The only way to make any real money in this world was to start a religion.” L. Ron Hubbard, Founder of the Church of Scientology
In the countryside of Guns and God, where church comrades Jim Bob and Joe Bob happily shoot through their neighborhood and a widespread mentality seems out of step with realness, one will wonder no longer how things could change for the better. In lockstep with such obvious backwardness and a meticulously fostered system of “good old boys”-connections, serves a local newspaper in the scenic north Georgia mountains. The provincial paper, distinguished by its perpetual dullness, was capable of publishing the reader’s letter of an alleged Reverend, whose name I do not even want to cite on my blog.
On pages 4 and 5 in the paper’s October 14, 2020 edition, the presumed minister jabbers about a topic he in his perfected bigotry obviously never heard much more about than through dull propaganda widely distributed in the United States. His assertions culminate in the sentence that America is – quote – “on the verge of becoming a socialistic state, which is clearly the work of the great deceiver Satan.” End quote.
I wonder how much time this scriptural genius has spent with lunatic conspiracy ideologists to utter such nonsense. At this juncture, I could go through his absolute baseless gibberish about Socialism line by line and confute him, factually accompanied by verifiable historic facts and first-hand experience. Instead, I would like to refer the reader to my various writings on this blog site.
Apart from that – and probably more importantly – is the rationale that a Reverend as a religious servant should never convert himself publicly into a political ideologist. But that’s exactly what this man does, for he not only uses a poor language in a baseless and repulsive propagandistic style, but rather makes his intention abundantly clear: namely, suggesting to his readers not to vote for the Democratic candidate because the consequence would be nothing but Socialism. This, Mr. Reverend, is not only shameful in attitude and false in itself – it also incapacitates you as your boss’ servant, always in service, whose public rhetoric consequently should be separated from his political bias.1 For what you did, you should change your job.
I am more inclined at this point to express my incredulous astonishment about how in the world, in the United States of America and in the 21st century, a newspaper can publish such horrendous, ultimate mischief without at least labeling a customized warning notice, especially when the personified existence of Satan is mentioned2. This has nothing to do anymore with freedom of speech, but rather with the journalistic obligation to exercise diligence. Or do the protagonists of this newspaper assume that their own children will get educated by being exposed to such ultimate stupidity?
1 And therefore again comes George Carlin’s quotation in mind: “I don’t know how you feel, but I’m pretty sick of church people. You know what they ought to do with churches? Tax them. If holy people are so interested in politics, government, and public policy, let them pay the price of admission like everybody else.”
2 I am aware of Satan’s central character in the Bible, although the unforgettable, genuine Lutheran Pastor Thoms in his religious instructions never mentioned this horrible figure toward us children. The spook probably would have scared the hell out of us. – I had encounters with Satan in a more appropriate place – in the book of fairytales sent in 1969 over the Iron Curtain by my aunt in West-Germany. It is still on my book shelf.