Despite their stated distaste for the so-called war on Christmas that unfolds every December, Christians of the martryesque persuasion plainly enjoy the battles, as this gives them uncommonly powerful opportunities to engage in the hollow bitching that pervades their entire “faith.”
Today, the American Fuckup Association spat out a press release noting that the 2009 version of the “war” has already begun in the form of a nativity display the city of Warren, Michigan is requiring be removed from the vicinity of a major intersection. The article begins with the claim that “The Christmas culture wars for 2009 have begun and ground zero is the Detroit suburb of Warren,” and devolves from there into unabashedly senseless rhetoric, including the placement of scare quotation marks around the phrase “separation of church and state” as if the concept is a rogue, false construct perpetrated by evil godless types. May I describe the “capital city” of my “home” “state” of “New Hampshire” as “Concord” in similarly baroque form without inviting scorn? I hope not.
I could personally not care much less about the presence of nativity scenes. They represent a bullshit event being framed as genuine history, but there’s nothing unattractive or offensive about them and I would not be personally inclined to call for their removal–this stuff is a world apart from Jesus-inspired efforts to render creationism legitimate, impede biomedical research for insane reasons, or otherwise propagate myth-driven assholery. Yet I also appreciate the need to keep such sectarian displays on public land in check, and what the AFA release fails to reveal–and not by accident–is that the Warren set-up was in fact on government property. The author notes repeatedly that the scene was “privately maintained,” but fails to note that the display was situated on a median strip, patches of land which, last I was aware, are never the property of private citizens.
Here’s the kicker, in my view. The AFA article states:
Richard Thompson, President and Chief Counsel of the Law Center, said that militant atheists attempt to do through the courts what the Taliban by force had done to Afghanistan: remove all the symbols of the country’s national heritage.
People who are not themselves victims of religious indoctrination can immediately spot the problem with this. The AFA compares the non-violent actions of “militant atheists” stateside, pursued through legal channels, with the deplorable and murderous tactics of the Taliban as if this were not the essential difference between them. If I told you that someone had done with a throw pillow what people of a similar bent had perpetrated with a bazooka, I would hope your eyebrows would be raised. Yet this is, from a rhetorical standpoint, exactly what the AFA is doing with this blather. There is roughly the same level of similarity between American atheists and Afghanistan theocrats as there is a physical resemblance between Willie Shoemaker and Shaquille O’Neal, but such considerations never stop people from the AFA or other Christopathic outfits–in fact, they feed handily and hungrily on their own transparent lies.
Despite years of observing the dishonesty inextricably woven into “journalism” by religious mouthpieces such as the AFA and Focus on the Fuckups, I am often still surprised to see how shamelessly it is spread. But when your world view is grounded in events that never took place and serially contradictory ideas, such dishonesty is, I imagine, obligatory.