Monday, April 09, 2007

You've got (hate) mail

My mail lady must be really confused. I've often wondered how much you could tell about a person from the mail they receive. On one hand we get Maxim, but we also get Bust and Bitch. We get mail from Adam and Eve and the Baseball Hall of Fame, no to mention the countless sports related catalogues we get thanks to past Christmas and Birthday presents. Inky gets a ton of leftist solicitations from the likes of NOW, Planed Parenthood and the ACLU, but I get regular mailings from a guy who is just a hair to the right of Attila the Hun. There's nothing wrong with having divergent points of view, or even interests that seem at odds with one another, and that may be what our postal worker thinks of us by looking at our mail. But, there's a reason I have fundamentalist religious propaganda sent to my house.

It's something my Dad once told me: Know your enemy. If you don't understand what the crazy fringe is up to, you will never be able to understand the rank and file. And so it was that I opened a Chick Tract a few years ago, at my old job, and was exposed to the very edge of the Christian fanatical fringe. Jack Chick writes little comic books he calls "Chick Tracts" that are morality plays at their very simplest level.

The storyline always plays out the same way; a sinner (Homosexual, Non believer, Jew, Muslim, Catholic or even Rock and roll fan or a burgeoning young D&D player) comes in contact with and evangelical Christian who points out their faults. The Christan quotes scripture to tell the sinner what rock solid evidence they have that Jesus' way is the only way, and one of two things happens. Either the person repents and comes to the light (often way too fast, and with far too little introspection) or they shrug off the Word of the Lord and are shown in the end being sent to the Lake of Fire.

I'm not joking! That's how simple it is to them, and what's worse, the second grade simplicity with which they implement biblical teachings is akin to drinking the Cool Aid. So why did I latch on to thes little bundles of hate? Cause they're funny as shit, that's why. I started collecting them like baseball cards, getting excited every time we got a new one. You see, I worked in the mailroom of the worlds largest credit card company, and about 10 or 15 people a night would include the tracts in their payments. I got so impatient waiting to collect the whole set, that I just went ahead and ordered if from Chick's website. And now he won't leave me alone, but on the bright side, every time he sends me a catalog it includes the newest piece of garbagehe has published.

I'm still waiting to receive on of the "alternate versions" he has that are adapted for black readers. Classic! Ned Flanders once said that he adhered to every dictum in the Bible, even the ones that contradicted themselves. Jack Chick is Ned Flanders, but not nearly as likable. What Jack Chick has, that most fanatical Christians lack is a fully developed conspiracy complex (see The Westboro Baptist Church).

According to Chick's Tract "Holocaust" the crime of the century perpetrated against the Jews was fully planned and carried out by the Pope. He blames most every fault of the modern world on Masons, Jews, and most of all Catholics. In fact, as far as Chick is concerned there is no greater evil on the planet then the Pope and his flock.

Very few people are spared the wrath of Jack Chick, which makes me wonder what his savior would think of his vitriol laced funny papers. What I can never get my mind around is how the followers of such a kind, loving and gentle man can be so filled with hate. Jesus wasn't a 'hate' kind of guy. He said that the way you treat the least of mankind was the way you treat him. My guess that if Jesus did come back he wouldn't be radical enough for this 10% of Christians who need something to believe in so bad, that they take it too far. The rest of the people of the world do get it, they don't need to hate people and be so presumptuous as to tell them what their creator will say about them at their judgment.

However, we must keep our eye on this small yet ever growing contingent of Evangelicals who hate everyone who doesn't do it just like they do. In their mind treating others as you would like to be treated, and being kind to other's will land you in hell, if you don't follow their laws to the letter while doing it. Just ask Rabbi Waxman.

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