One thing I forgot to mention about yesterday’s trip: As I was sitting outside the airport waiting for the SkyRide bus from Denver to Boulder to arrive, a guy who had been standing next to me for several minutes turned to me and said, “So, how are you to day?” I immediately knew: evangelical, proselytizer. The only question was which “faith” and since Mormons seem to travel in pairs, I was pretty sure I knew.
I told the guy I was doing just great. Sure enough, his next question as about my “relationship with Jesus Christ” and whether I read the Bible. I told him I’d memorized it just to see what he’s do, but I don’t think he heard me in his haste to launch into a spiel. He produced not only the Watchtower but a companion pubication called Awake!, which describes the myriad ways in which Earth is clearly designed for life. As he leaned over my shoulder pointing out keep passages and emphasizing how “none of this could have been an accident, there’s an intelligent design,” I started to clench my teeth, but then realized (and this shows you the typical mind of a connected person c. 2009) I could just blog about it later.
These Jehovah’s Witnesses are invariably pleasant people. I could never be rude to one no matter what sort of crazy, unwelcome shit they produce. In fact, I don’t even have the heart to argue–although my primary reason for letting them have their say and taking copies of their rags is because it’s the path of least resistance and gets rid of them more quickly.
So when the guy said that if the Earth were not 96 million miles from the sun (OK, he was closer than most Americans ever will be), life could not exist and it is therefore obvious God put the Earth there for the benefit of humankind (which apparently came first), I didn’t say, “Isn’t it obvious to you that one of the planets happened to form in an orbit that allowed for conditions favoring carbon-based life, and that’s why we only see it on Earth? And do you know how inhospitable most of Earth is?” I just shut up and tried to appear pensive.
One other weird thing he said: “We don’t get involved in government, because Jehovah is going to destroy all governments anyway.” It’s true that Jehovah’s Witnesses aren’t active in trying to fuck things up for everyone like Evangelical Christians are (not that they have the numbers to do much), but their apparent motivation seems a little offbeat.