Ignorance Is All in the Family and a Real Sin

7 08 2008

You might remember Snook blogging the giant ball of twine, how its parochial and suspicious-smelling legend became the ultimate uniting force of Identity for its willing-to-belong disciples?

Small towns like big families have great charm, so many virtues. But as Dale observed at his own family reunion this summer, some vile but equally human comparisons are true too:

The same weird dichotomy is present in many of the deeply religious folks I know. . . including some I like so much I could burst . . .[who] in the midst of a perfectly normal conversation. . . suddenly spew bile or rank ignorance — often without changing expression — before turning back to the weather or the casserole.

It’s not a case of some believers being lovely and others being nasty. That I could sort out. It’s much more confusing.

I’ve been shocked (not Nance, apparently!) at the ignorant and racist religious bile being spewed at Barack Obama by supposedly patriotic, conservative, golden-rule Christians, even from homeschool advocates who with stubborn pride clutch their own differences from mainstream society as the ties that bind us in one identity under One Family Name — Homeschooler! — and loudly defend as absolute their right to protection from outsider suspicions based on those differences.

But although Obama is in fact Christian by choice and following a clearly American-centric, politically evangelistic denomination arguably closer to their beliefs and practices than Mitt Romney’s Mormonism or John McCain’s um, post-POW junketing and family-abandoning for the shy young heiress as his child-bride trophy wife? — apparently Christians very much like Obama just can’t bear to believe it, because that could make him one of the family!

So ultimate difference must be found and if not, it must be fabricated. Never mind reality because real Christians don’t need to be able to prove their stories to themselves or each other — collective belief really can create its own reality. (Peter Pan, prisoners of war and the study of situational psychology can prove it.) Read the rest of this entry »