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Holidays, gay marriage, abortion, & the pseudo-Christian bogus issues machine
[Posted 17 December 2005]

I met Jesus back in the 90s. He was working as a cook at the Malibu Inn, a former truck stop made into a restaurant & bar. I made him laugh by deliberately pronouncing his name the American way, JEE-zus, instead of his native Mexican way, Hey-ZEUS. It was much more fun to tell people that I'd met Jesus, and to introduce him as Jesus to drinking buddies who came into the bar.

Somehow Americans don't name their kids Jesus nearly as often as Mexicans do. Perhaps white America sees it as disrespectful to their deities, or maybe pretentious. Who knows. The real point here is -- how did you feel when you started reading this article and saw the words "I met Jesus"? Got a lump in your throat? Did your heart start pounding your sternum, or your stomach lurch into your heart? You see, a lot of Americans claim to believe in Jesus, but they really see him as a myth. Some claiming to be "Christian" visit church once in a while, but through experience they know that Jesus really doesn't interfere in their lives. They really never expect him to show up, even though supposedly he'll return someday and judge everyone. Theoretically, he could be fixing that burrito you just ordered, but no one would believe Jesus in the kitchen might be the reincarnation of Jesus of Nazareth -- unless he started judging people and shooting lightning bolts from his fingertips, or something extra-dramatic like that. Yet think about it -- would the real Jesus be mean enough to zap people with electrical bolts, or nice enough to feed them?

And so the topic of this rant begins -- the people I call "pseudo-Christians." Because of my background in sociology, I feel obligated to give a brief definition of "pseudo-Christians," just like any other paper dealing with a term that isn't yet well-defined in the literature. Basically, I define "pseudo-Christians" as those who claim to be Christians, but whose beliefs and actions are COMPLETELY OPPOSED to Jesus and everything Jesus has ever represented. They like to call themselves Christian and have that "good Christian" image, but if Jesus were to really show up one day, they'd be in deep, deep trouble.

I could go down the list -- people who support the Iraq War or war of any kind are anti-Jesus. "He that leadeth into captivity shall go into captivity: he that killeth with the sword must be killed with the sword." (Revelation 13:10) And "Blessed are the peacemakers, for they shall be called the children of God" (Matthew 5:9). (Has to make you wonder -- who are warmakers children of?)... People who support the death penalty are anti-Jesus. "Ye have heard that it hath been said, an eye for an eye, and a tooth for a tooth; but I say unto thee, that ye resist not evil: but whosoever shall smite thee on thy right cheek, turned him the other also (Matthew 5:38 39). And "Blessed are the merciful for they shall obtain mercy" (Matthew 5:7). That's in addition to Jesus' alleged father's "Thou shalt not kill" commandment... People who don't help the poor are anti-Jesus... People who harm people for profit are anti-Jesus... But listing everything modern Christians do that is in reality anti-Jesus would take me months, if not years, to compile. And books have probably already been written on the subject. I'm just bringing up a few examples of what I call "pseudo-Christians." They call themselves Christians, but when you look at what they REALLY believe and do, Christians they ain't.

Pseudo-Christians have been on the move lately, making themselves political "activists" on a number of issues. The latest "issue" was featured quite a bit on CNN over the past week -- the use of the term "holiday" versus "Christmas." Some of the Christian fringe is upset with President Bush for sending Christmas cards wishing people happy "holidays" instead of a merry "Christmas." I could get into the whole historical timing of Christmas, not actually the time of Christ's birth but instead a period selected to compete with Roman feasts at the time, but that's too much of a diversion from my subject. My point is -- aren't there more pressing things that REAL Christians would be spending their time on? Just look at the number of people killed or disabled on a daily basis in Iraq. Or the poor in this country, with their benefits recently cut yet again by a government hungry for war money. Or hurricane victims whose needs aren't even close to being met by government and non-profit aid. What kind of Christian would waste their time on dopey issues like holiday cards and holiday sales? Well, pseudo-Christians in Florida and elsewhere are actually threatening to boycott stores if they don't stop advertising year-end sales as "holiday" sales. And so they get a few of their faces on the news promoting a "fluff" issue, at the expense of the Christian ideal of tolerance. You see, pseudo-Christians need an issue to rally around, in lieu of feeding the poor, or housing hurricane victims. No depressing soup kitchens for them. They'd rather spend their time on simple-minded issues that don't mean anything, and don't benefit anyone, even themselves.

Another "big issue" of the pseudo-Christians, popularized during the 2006 elections, was gay marriage. That's right, because the Old Testament condemned sodomy, pseudo-Christians think that bashing homosexuals is the Christian thing to do. That's despite Jesus not dealing with the issue of homosexuality, instead preaching tolerance. But that doesn't matter to pseudo-Christians. As long as they don't have to deal with real Christian issues like the death penalty or health care, war or peace, starvation or poverty, they're willing to hop on just about any bandwagon. As long as it's simple-minded enough for them to understand, and gets them on the news. The fact is, bashing homosexuals drives a part of their membership away, alienates the "sinners" they're allegedly trying to "help", and shows the rest of the world how intolerant "Christians" (pseudo-Christians) are. But "counterproductive" is a big word, and tolerance certainly isn't a pseudo-Christian value. So if they can help their war-mongering, death-penalty-hawking, impoverished-slandering political candidates get elected by scaring fellow pseudo-Christians with gay marriage, then so be it.

And then there's good old abortion. Roe Vs. Wade, Pro-Choice, all of that. One of my friends in college was a women's rights activist, yet somehow at the same time an anti-abortionist, a/k/a "Pro-Lifer." She'd go to protests and carry a really grotesque photo of an aborted fetus. (I was always amazed by the Pro-Lifers and Lesbians who attached their causes to the women's rights movement, apparently trying to pick up support from the larger movement for their smaller movements.) Well, my friend genuinely believed in the Pro-Life movement, and some Christians do. But in the end, abortion is largely exploited as a cheap political issue by those not at all opposed to killing people AFTER they're born, or letting children suffer and even die from lack of health care, war, and other hardships. And then there were the deaths of women who couldn't get a safe abortion before it was made legal. All of this death while protecting a zygote. But you see, that makes abortion a gray area -- an issue that isn't easily resolved ethically. Something that isn't clear-cut either way -- and so yet another issue for the pseudo-Christians to exploit! As long as it isn't their own teenage daughter who can't have an abortion.

Some people are anti-abortion because they really don't believe in killing any human life though, and so here's how you tell the difference between actual Christians and pseudo-Christians:

If they're AGAINST abortion, yet FOR the death penalty, you know they're PSEUDO-Christians.

If they're AGAINST abortion, yet FOR war, you know they're PSEUDO-Christians.

If they're AGAINST abortion, yet AGAINST welfare, you know they're PSEUDO-Christians.

If they're AGAINST abortion, yet AGAINST national health care, you know they're PSEUDO-Christians.

If they're AGAINST abortion, yet INTOLERANT of homosexuals or any other group, you know they're PSEUDO-Christians.

If they're AGAINST abortion, yet INTOLERANT of other religions and their holidays, you know they're PSEUDO-Christians.

As always, the list could go on forever. The point is, pseudo-Christians aren't really there because they believe in Jesus. They hardly ever give a care about anything Jesus said or believed in. Instead, they're a bogus issues machine for the Republican Party. There, I said it. They just beg votes for the fringe element of Republican candidates, using any issue that appeals to the lowest elements among us. Remember that the next time someone slanders a "Holiday Tree." They're just trying to get you behind a non-issue, supported by a political candidate who loves to talk about JEE-zus. But who also loves killing people with wars, poverty, bad health care, and death chambers.

Happy Holidays!

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