It's old news now -- over a week old in fact -- the Harris poll that drew such shocking results as 24% of Republicans believe Obama is the antichrist. Plus, he's a Muslim, non-citizen socialist who's doing many of the things Hitler did ... blah, etc, blah. You can't Google a search for the poll without getting countless blog posts. It seems everyone has said something about this poll, and for good reason I suppose. In case you haven't kept up here is a nice summary I found along with some interesting analysis.
I couldn't leave it alone so I dug deeper and found the complete results of the poll on the Harris website. The poll is related to John Avlon's book Wingnuts: How the Lunatic Fringe is Hijacking America. I plan to check out this book because it: A) Sounds right up my alley and B) I'm very intrigued by this quote from the author (in response to the Harris poll stats):
"These new numbers are shocking but not surprising – they detail the extent to which Wingnuts are hijacking our politics. This poll should be a wake-up call to all Americans about the real costs of using fear and hate to pump up hyper-partisanship. We are playing with dynamite by demonizing our president and dividing our country in the process. Americans need to remember the perspective that Wingnuts always forget – patriotism is more important than partisanship."
I was not going to write about this since it has been drawn out by so many others. However, this morning I read a couple of stories about the arrest of the Hutaree wackos next door in MI, OH and IN. As my very patient wife-partner and better half can attest, I get worked up by such stupidity. Sometimes really worked up. I am an idealist at heart. But pragmatically speaking, I believe my greatest character flaw is the tenacious, yet erroneous, belief I hold that all people can be civil, intelligent and respectful. We can live courageously and take responsibility for our actions. We're smart and resourceful and confident in all the best, slightly above average and heavily gilted Lake Wobegon sorts of ways.
In America we might look pretty and have nice houses, big cars and cool clothes. We can eat like royalty to excess. We can firm our wrinkles, bleach our teeth, plump our pleasureable parts and suck out our cellulite. We afford exorbitant gym fees because we can't be bothered to sweat in the name of practicality or physical labor. We pay immigrants substandard wages to perform those tasks for us.
We might look like -- hell, we may actually believe -- we have it all. And we do; as long as "it" means "shit for brains." We are a pathetically stupid nation. This is an undeniable fact in spite of No Child Left Behind, higher rates of literacy/graduation and greater numbers of young people attending college. Some folks are getting certificates and degrees and whatnot, but aren't learning a goddamned thing about how to be intelligent and productive members of society.
Wingnuts and Tea Party-ers are saying they're fed up. Well, I'm saying, "Fuck you, Wingnuts and Tea Party-ers. I'm tired of your bullshit and the bad rap you and the rest of the putrid-brained people abusing their American citizenship are giving us the world over. Push off."
In fact, sensible friends among us, you'd do well to tell these people to fuck off too. Now, you may be wondering how can someone who espouses tolerance be telling others to fuck off? The distinction is simple -- I am not asking anyone to adopt any belief or accept any religion; I am simply saying that anyone who tries to get folks to do such should be stopped. Free speech does not encompass maiming or killing, or condoning such acts. If you don't get that you have serious road blocks to your development.
It's that simple.
I posit this: America would be a better place if we had far fewer people who believed they were ordained by god and carried some divine rite. You godly people are ignorant, weak and feeble because you replace intelligence with blind faith and rely on the hope of divine retribution. Fuck off.
Our country was built on humility but we outggrew our breeches. One may harken to the olden days of god-fearing citizens like it was some sort of golden, pure age. It was, but not in a naive way. Conservatives want to say we've lost our morals. Liberals want to say we are stretching our destiny.
Early Americans feared god because they were ironically humble; taking on huge rivers, unchecked storms and unscaled cliffs did that I suppose. As soon as dams were in place and bridges built exltation was in order. Who needs fear the natural world since mankind can tame it all?
The not-so-good part was the eradication of all indigenous people who were non-christian and would not convert. That phenomenon seems to have changed little these days. Now everyone with a bible study passport, an iPod and a plane ticket thinks they're a theologian. You're chaff, I assure you, in that whole wheat equation. Dumbasses, every one. You are doomed to repeat history and it will bite thee in thine ass.
Here's a taste of my creed -- to hell with religious zealotry and fundamentalism. Quit living life like you're right and others must therefore be wrong. Polarity of thought is useless. Morals exist without a god to carve mythical tablets or men to forge sacred scriptures. You can keep making them up but they will still be conditionally false and wrong.
Come on. Seriously. If you have enough brain power to craft dogma and defend empty positions based on faith can't you dream up a few positions based on square logic and reason? So what if I and we are all heretical -- can't you overcome reason and science that are based on "usurping god's law?" What the fuck ...
Friends, Romans, countryfolk ... give up your stupidity in the name of ... . ?