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Who Among Us Has The Right To Rewrite Religion, History Or Science?

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Recent events in Iran concerning attempts to assert that the Nazi Holocaust was a hoax have awakened me to what might be the tiny seedlings of an educational and cultural crisis in our country. Intentional misinformation on everything from the moon landing in 1969, world ecology/global warming, basic world history, astronomy, and AIDS are all beginning to take footholds in world culture.

While the vast majority of Americans are intelligent enough to know better, more and more disinformation is being disseminated (and in some cases believed) as fact to an entire generation of Americans. In the age of the Internet this irresponsible disinformation is spreading like wildfire.

Politicians and religious leaders worldwide are beginning to take liberties with, and in some cases attempting to completely rewrite, common knowledge. Once solid scientific and historical facts are now being irresponsibly branded “theories”, or worse, out and out lies.

This is nothing new; religion has opposed science for centuries.

As far back as the 1700s in American history, there are similar religious zealots who branded all science as evil and a contradiction to biblical teachings. Damage from lightning storms was a dangerous problem in colonial days. The tallest buildings in a town were the most vulnerable. Since the structures had very little metal, they’d usually explode when hit, causing fires that spread to other buildings, threatening whole settlements.

What were the highest spires in those days? Church steeples. To curb the problem, Benjamin Franklin invented the lightning rod, a device that would channel the bolt of electricity harmlessly to the ground. Fanatical Christians began protesting and demanding they be removed from steeples because use of the strange devices was seen as mankind defying God’s will. In other words it was better to condemn something you don’t understand (Franklin’s electrical theory), even if it meant sacrificing your own house of worship. Some preachers even went so far as to blame Franklin for causing an earthquake with his evil invention in 1755!

Southern white children in the late 1800s never stopped referring to Negroes as “niggers” and were taught to think of them as inferior intellectually and nothing more than common farm animals to be owned and traded. Those beliefs were handed down from generation to generation, and only in the last fifty years or so has the American culture in general rejected such opinions. These notions were so ingrained in the southern mindset that laws had to be passed in the early 1960s in order to protect the rights of black Americans to vote, work, and have good housing.

One of the most horrific examples of dangerous opinions being taught as fact is when Nazi children were taught by their parents to hate Jews. They learned that Jews are stingy, speak in strange tongues, hoard money and never return anything to society. Hitler was merely performing God’s holy judgment upon them for the crime of crucifying Christ, and it was completely justified that they be rounded up and executed.

German children were also held to the criteria of racial purity and all who didn’t meet it were judged inferior. Never mind that nearly none of the Nazi hierarchy matched their own descriptions of what the “master race” should look like.

The AIDS epidemic in the U.S. in the early 1980s went almost completely unchecked because normally responsible and knowledgeable people told the public that it only struck homosexuals and the general straight population was safe. Many Americans believed people like Anita Bryant and Jerry Falwell, who taught that God had brought his judgment down on the sinning heathens.

These zealots branded anyone who contradicted their prejudices as un-Christian. Rather than speak out against these hate-mongers, scientists and medical scholars who knew better would let hundreds of thousands of people become needlessly infected because they believed they were immune. People like Falwell, Pat Robertson and their like have no conscience towards the resulting victims. The only way to get the disease is to have sex in a way that conflicts with God’s moral teachings. President Ronald Reagan also used the religious Right's hate speech as an excuse to delay an initiative to get AIDS under control until it was far too late.

About Jet Gardner

I like collecting books, music, movies, chess sets and friends
  • Ruvy in Jerusalem

    God had nothing to do with the persecution of the Jews, Hitler did. Hitler hated Jews, but he also hated organized religion.

    With all respect, Miriam, I beg to differ with you. G-d runs the universe, a fact that we should not ever forget. Given that, it would do you well to read this essay: Confronting the Holocaust Jewishly.

    Secondly, the Nazis did not hate religion per se – they hated the religions they disagreed with, like Judaism and Christianity. They viewed us Jews as a Gegenrasse, a race that they had to exterminate, as we, in their eyes, polluted the world. In a simple sentence, they stood the Kabbala on its head, made us the enemies – and built a mystic reality on this. The Nazis most assuredly had a religious framework for their ideas. They eventually found, after much research, Buddhist texts in Tibet that referred to Jews as ancient enemies, and it was a Nazi who tutored the man today known as the Dalai Lama.

    Shavua Tov,

  • Jet in Columbus

    “Oh great… just what I’d need-a press secretary named Dr. Dreadful!!! ”

    I’m sorry Doc for the sarcasm, if you want to be my press secretary, okay, and you won’t even have to sit on my lap…. :)

  • Jet in Columbus

    Oh Great, they’re carrying guns now! According to published reports the Tennessee guy that shot up that church left a note that it was because he hated liberals, and actions that the church was taking to encourage understanding towards gays.

    I guess us fags are going to have to start toting guns for self-defence.

  • Cannonshop

    Jet, I would’ve suggested (and have suggested to gay acquaintances in the past) that anyone who tends to be subjected to bullying and unprovoked violence OUGHT to be armed as a matter of course, and spend at least SOME time learning how to use whatever weapon they so choose in a competent manner-because scumbags, and violent scumbags, will not be deterred by morality or law, nor will they be overawed by “The moral high ground”. They’re stopped by bullets, sometimes they’re deterred by the fear of being taken by their proposed victims, and when they’re bent on “Suicide by cop (or bystander)” then it’s best to expedite their journey to the creator-preferably before they’ve been able to hurt more than one or two other people. An asshole eaten by hate will find other methods, guaranteed. (IIRC, explosives are a controlled substance just about everywhere, but it doesn’t stop suicide bombers in the london tube or car-bombers, does it?)
    It is prudent, in a violent society, to be armed when you’re targeted by walking filth.

  • Jet in Columbus

    Cannon, having dated several cops, on of the hardest questions for them to answer in a post shooting incodent is “How many times did you fire your weapon?” and usually they’ll think they only fired 2-3 times when they’d actually emptied the whole clip.

    I’d be afraid of emptying a gun into someone who just walked up to me to ask for directions.

    I’m one of the people who should never own a gun because after the attack, and four years later, I’m still being treated for Post Traumatic Stress and I jump at shadows.

    I can handle hand to hand, but if I even think someone has a gun, I go into panic mode.

    Should the average citizen own guns, yes
    … to protect thier home from an intruder (though many a wife killer has gotten off by saying they thought she was a burglar)

    Out on the street. Unless you’re a bonded carrier no.

    It’s really a moot point, anyone with half a brain can go out and buy a gun from a friend and then shoot up a school, there’s no way to stop that, there’s just too many guns available.

    “I’ll beet you in the middle of main street at high noon.


  • Cannonshop

    Each their own, Jet, but I’d say that if you’re willing to at least resist with your hands, that’s something-I’d recommend a “Stun Gun” or other equalizer just-in-case, on account of I don’t know how big, trained, or skilled you are at fisticuffs and grappling. I’d also (please, don’t be offended) suggest you shop around a bit more if your therapy’s not working, on account of there are lots of people in the “mental health” field who excel mainly at projecting their own defects and insecurities onto their patients, along with handing out drugs, and a lot of “Treatment professionals” seem bent on dismantling their patient’s will to resist further victimization. (I know they tried with me from about age thirteen on until I finally realized they weren’t helping.)

    I didn’t stop having nightmares and jumping at shadows until I learned how to USE that paranoia and accept that there are bad, bad, people out there that have to be stopped-and that they CAN be stopped, and that more to the point, I can help STOP them with preparation and some learned situational awareness. The counselors, on the other hand, wanted to drug me silly and get me on disability so that I could afford to pay for THEIR treatments (with government help). My way probably doesn’t work for everyone, Jet, but it worked for me well enough that I can function without antidepressants, sleep-aids, and anxiety medications or hour upon hour (year after year) of therapy that isn’t working.

    for me, the first step was admitting to myself that the ‘edge’ wasn’t unreasonable or irrational, it wasn’t going to go away and if I didn’t learn to read and control it, it would become unreasonable and irrational. The second was realizing that the nightmares weren’t an aberration, but a warning-this has happened, and if I didn’t do something REAL to prevent it, it would probably happen again. Finding out how I could make sure it didn’t happen to ME again was step three onward. somewhere in there, there’s the idea that if I can learn to prevent it (or make the bastard pay a price higher than he’s willing to risk)for me, I can help other people prevent it from happening to THEM. somewhere in there was also the admission that “The kindness of strangers” doesn’t exist, and that the Police aren’t coming to save anyone-least of all myself, if anyone is a-gonna do something, it’s got to be the person who’s there. At that point, it became a matter of learning and practicing, and eventually teaching, and somewhere in there, the anxiety attacks stopped, the nightmares became manageable, and I got healthier all around-because I wasn’t RULED by my fear anymore-it’s still here, but it’s under control. Guns don’t do that-they’re objects. I don’t even carry most places, I don’t need to-but I’m aware of the places I DO need to, and take appropriate action to avoid those places whenever possible. Fear and paranoia are a heightened sense of danger-if you can learn to read and control them, they’re useful, if you rely on some degreed parasite to tell you they’re bad and give you lies and dope so you can momentarily feel everything is sunshine, you’re never going to get over what happened to you-the wound will just keep bleeding forever-and-ever-amen, and worse, you’ll see everyone around you not for who they are, but with a twisted fun-house caricature built out of fear and the lies you’ve been told by someone who’s adept at telling the lies that make you feel (temporarily) better, or morally superior, or whatever toxic opiate they want to feed you this week. (and that goes for the Preachers too. Freddy Phelps and his ilk recruit from the same pool of anxiety, paranoia, irrationality,ignorance, weakness, and fear that the degreed parasites do.)

    If you’re willing to use your hands to resist, great-develop your ability to resist with your hands, learn to use your eyes, ears, and mind to detect the bastards at a distance, use your fear to motivate your eyes to become sharp, your ears discriminating, your sense of smell, and your physical readiness. Use your mind to provide the brakes and teach yourself to recognize the difference between a threat posture and a harmless one, learn to spot concealed weapons. Until you’re confident you can handle a situation, it’s going to always be in your nightmares, no matter how much sunshine and daisies your therapist pushes at you and no matter how much panacea your local alderman/advisor/city-councilman/Preacher,whatever, pushes at you, or the lies politicians spew about “Cleaning up the streets”-they have a vested interest in your being fearful and as helpless as they can convince you to stay, because if you’re fearful and helpless, they can rule you, they can extract from you with empty promises, outright lies, and conspiracy theories, because you become dependent on them, rather than the natural relationship in which your “Leaders” are dependent on YOU.

    And the criminals, the bashers, the thugs and the other urban predatory scum of the earth rely on two things-one, complacent victims unwilling and unable to resist, and two, victims who remain traumatized for years and won’t cause them ACTUAL trouble in the form of stepping up to protect the former or making their lives uncomfortable in other, non-illegal ways.

  • Jet in Columbus

    Cannon, no offense taken, but I have one of the best therapists in the field, the problem is that after all this time, they’re still not done repairing the physical damage that was done yet, so the constant physical doctor’s appointments and the fact that the private work comp provider keeps trying to come up with new and inovative ways to dump me from their roles is as much a source of stress as the original injuries.

    It takes a while to get over it when three guys get up close and personal and try to beat you to death…

    Especially when you can’t identify them, but there’s always the possibility of them spotting you and…

  • jeannie danna


    I just dugg this article, and I’ll bookmark it to read later, I promise! :)

  • Jet Gardner

    Thanks sweetie

  • Jet Gardner

    A judge has upheld the firing of a central Ohio public school science teacher who was accused of preaching religious beliefs in class and of keeping a Bible on his desk.

    Freshwater was also accused of using a science tool to burn students’ arms with the image of a cross.

    The school board in the community about 40 miles northeast of Columbus first tried to dismiss Freshwater in 2008 after investigators reported that he preached Christian beliefs in class when discussing topics such as evolution and homosexuality, and was insubordinate in failing to remove a Bible from his classroom.