It was the moment that I knew I could no longer believe in fairy-tales.
For almost ten years I had participated in a men’s bible study every Friday morning. We met in a conservative church with a great cook. This lady made the best sausage gravy I have ever poured over two buttermilk biscuits.
This group was composed of people who I knew, 12-15 white, middle to upper income guys, all much more conservative than I was. Mostly I attended for the camaraderie, the possibility of deepening my faith, and a wonderful breakfast. But something had happened in my life, an event that changed the trajectory of not only my personal life but my business life and my standing in the community. This “something” forced me to move in a different direction. It wasn’t what I had planned on. It wasn’t something I was happy about it and it wasn’t something I had any control over. This “something” also removed the scales I had on my eyes, scales that prevented me from seeing the suffering and injustice in this world and my community.
This particular Friday morning began as it normally did, get in line, get some good eats and shoot the shit before we opened our Bibles and started our lesson. Hugh, in between bites, mentioned that he had read an article, a “scientific” article he made sure to emphasize, about the discovery of Noah’s Ark. As Hugh told it, these scientist had found Noah’s Ark buried on top of a mountain (Mount Ararat) in Turkey. Now, in truth, what Hugh read was an article about some Evangelical Christian explorers, not scientist, finding some debris and proclaiming the discovery to be Noah’s Ark. Basically a “what else could it be” eureka moment.
I listened quietly as Hugh rambled on, and on about how momentous this finding was for Christians. In his mind, this discovery proved that everything contained in the Bible was real and authentic even adding this caveat, if dinosaurs did exist they would have been listed in the Bible. That was the statement that put me over the edge.
I hoped what I was getting ready to tell Hugh would at least be agreed upon by one or two of my other friends around the table. I discovered later it wasn’t. I asked Hugh did he really believe that a 500-year-old man and his sons, with no power tools could build a boat big enough to accommodate “seven pairs of every kind of clean animal, a male and its mate, and one pair of every kind of unclean animal, a male and its mate, and also seven pairs of every kind of bird, male and female, to keep their various kinds alive throughout the earth”?
I continued that the “story” about Noah wasn’t about him building an Ark, it was a story about faithfulness and trust. The Ark, the animals, and the flood just made it an exciting, and riveting story to tell around the camp fire 3,000 years or so ago. Think about it, I told the silent group, there were no books, pictures or movies back then. People told stories and the more embellished the easier it was to remember and pass down to other generations.
I remember looking around the table at that point seeking a reassuring face and found none. Finally Hugh spoke up, “So I suppose Jonah and the Whale is just a story too”? My answer to this question would end my ten-year long membership in the Friday morning Men’s Bible Study, “Yes” I said, “the same thing”.
Have you ever wondered why it is so hard to have any kind of rational discussion with a Deplorable or Evangelical? Fairy-tales versus reality. Trump and Fox News spoon fed the “base” fairy-tales and lies. Here is a recent example, hell it happened just yesterday during Trump’s UN speech. Trump claimed or “lied” that his boasting about what an amazing job he is doing was meant to get a few chuckles. Trump; “Oh it was great. Well that was meant to get some laughter, but it was great.” And Fox News broadcast an edited, “fairy-tale” version of Trumps speech eliminating all of the laughter.
Now, if you only watch Fox you would have missed these headlines;
Trump’s Speech at the UN Triggers Laughter—and Disbelief
World leaders laugh at Donald Trump’s UN speech
UN Laughs at Trump for Boasting During Assembly Speech
Why? Because these headlines don’t, can’t and won’t perpetrate the Donald Trump, Fox News fairy-tale. Trump gave his “base” their out if confronted by someone like me, “The world laughed at your President” I might say. No, they will respond, “it was meant to get some laughter.”
Yesterday, Ms. Suze commented that she thought I handled a back and forth with one of Trumps sanctimonious, self-righteous Evangelicals better than she would have. I told Ms. Suze that I have found that logic frustrates the shit out of these people. We all need to remember that these are the same folks that believe in a big boat with every animal in the world on it and a guy that lived in the belly of a big fish. Going toe to toe with most of them really isn’t a fair fight. Typically what you end up with is a parting shot like I got yesterday; “you are so tiresome. You say the same thing over and over yet say nothing at all.”
I am going to keep saying “nothing at all”. Some of you may get tired of it and I am sorry. I wish I could go back to writing about Buddha, waterfalls, rainbows and moonbeams but I can’t and I won’t until we neuter the lying piece of shit that occupies 1600 Pennsylvania Ave. And for all of you holier-than-thou, hypocritical Evangelicals and Deplorables, come at me. Attempt to show me how smart you are, how right you are. I am waiting. We are all waiting.