Reaction from the right's wingnut faction to the impending resignation of SCOTUS Justice Sandra Day O'Connor has been predictably orgasmic. Filtering out the yodels of triumph and focusing instead on the specifics of the saber-rattling and exhortations spilling from the mouths of the go-go-Goddies, however, is as instructive as it is nauseating; despite my familiarity with the way they "think," the depth and range of these people's shameless ignorance remains startling.

Not content to be free of one more uppity murderess, Christian spokesnuts, viewing O'Connor's ouster as a necessary step in the march toward a divine democracy despite her role in helping squash Democrats' scrambling to keep G.W. Bush from taking office in 2001, are imploring one another to FIGHT! FIGHT! FIGHT! to install the Word of God himself in the Supreme Court alongside the quietly insane Antonin "I'll go by my own version of the Constitution" Scalia and the brooding Clarence "Long Dong Silver" Thomas, the latter chap an indelible stain on judicial decency for almost 14 years now.

If any of you have ever wondered why I and others so freely write in vulgar, divisive terms about the religious right -- after all, it's not a crime to believe in decency and values and ghosts, right? -- look no further than the hostile, warlike mentality Western Christianity's own most visible constituents exhibit. I've marked key passages in red.

"We are keenly aware that it was judges who removed prayer from the public schools and decriminalized abortion which resulted in the deaths of 45,000,000 children. It was the courts that attempted to remove 'One Nation Under God' from the Pledge of Allegiance and it is now courts that are trying to redefine marriage and the family. There can be no more critical decision that President Bush will make then who he nominates." -- the Rev. Patrick J. Mahoney, director of the Christian Defense Coalition, which plans to hold rallies, prayer vigils and demonstrations in front of the Supreme Court before the start of the confirmation hearings

"Justice O'Connor's resignation is the most critical of any of the justices because her replacement will turn the direction of this court. We are already praying and working for a nominee that will not waffle as she did." -- National Clergy Council president Rev. Rob Schenck, omitting mention of sacrificing fowl and breakdancing so as to influence event outcomes

"Now it is time to fulfill your obligation to God and to those who elected you, and appoint a staunchly pro-life judge to the Supreme Court. The lives of millions of children yet to be conceived are depending on you for their very lives." -- Operation Rescue president Troy Newman, imploring President Bush to ram America's leading brand of superstition down everyone's throat

"The replacement of Justice O'Connor must be a justice who will acknowledge the Constitutional protections that exist to protect unborn children from the assault of abortion." -- National Institute of Family and Life Advocates President Thomas A. Glessner, referring to a nonexistent version of the Constitution

"Supreme Court justices should adhere to the rule of law and interpret the Constitution -- not make law based on their personal ideology or legal theories." -- Allan Parker, president of the Justice Foundation, imagining that adhering to prescribed religious doctrines does not epitomize "personal ideology"

"[O'Connor's] 'swing-vote' status on the Supreme Court over the issues of abortion and homosexual rights wrought more havoc upon our nation than our foreign enemies ever have." -- the Rev. Flip Benham, Director of Operation Save America/Operation Rescue, who went on to quote 2 Chronicles 19: 4-7

"We, as a nation, have been too long led astray by a High Court that has taken to itself the right to breathe new meaning into the Constitution, finding rights and discovering rules which defy and contradict the meaning of the text and original intent of the Founders." -- Dr. D. James Kennedy, president of Coral Ridge Ministries in Fort Lauderdale, who really needs to read this

"Until God's and America's laws are one and the same, we will piss and moan about anything that diverges from our Bibles while jacking off, cross-eyed and in secret, to our godthing, all the while labeling those who prefer to segregate fairy tales and facts 'anti-American.'" -- any one of the above assholes

The garbage about O'Connor scorning the Lord's wishes is obligatory (clearly He never should have cured her womanly affliction back in the day), coming as it does from minds operating under the constraints of powerful governors. But "Pre-born Americans"? I thought "pre-owned vehicle" was as low as anyone could go on the that'll-fool-'em scale. But I guess that settles it: Mary Magdalene was not a virgin but a pre-porked strumpet; Christ himself walks the earth (or someplace) even today (or eventually) because he was never truly killed, only pre-perforated, pre-unanimated, pre-devitalized.

These people honestly believe, just as the Bush administration wants them to, that abortion and gay rights are more concerning issues than, say, an increasingly bloody and ineffective war. They think that barring school principals from writing and reading sectarian prayers over the intercom, as the SCOTUS did in the 1960s, is tantamount to suspending a Christian student for endeavoring to pray on her own during moments of silence. Eyes alternately squeezed shut and squinting, rivulents of idiotsnot pooling on flap-flap-flapping upper lips, they disregard past and recent history as cleanly as they do the more troubling elements of biology and geoscience. They earnestly regard more liberal-leaning judges as terrorists with greater potential to do damage than Islamic suicide bombers. They sincerely believe that prayer, which -- despite billions of game attempts from the pathetic and stubborn -- has never once in the history of the universe resulted in a single damned thing turning out any differently than it would have anyway, is going to make a difference this time. They are wholly in favor of church-state separation except when it conflicts with their agenda, be it Prohibition, civil and women's rights, the very revolt that created the U.S., or the criminality of man-on-man buttfucking.

I am indisputably not making any of this up. If I were this mentally crippled but somehow aware of my deficits, I would have no worthy choice but to kill myself immediately.

Note religious groups' persistent complaint that liberal judges "legislate from the bench" rather than from the Constitution itself. This from people who want to legislate instead from the Bible, people who believe that women emit poison when they ooze their monthly stink-clot and that Jews are evil, people who with no apparent clue that the Constitution does not mention Christianity once, that the Founding Fathers thought Christianity was bullshit through and through.

In the religious milieu's ugly spirit of intellectual inversion and paradox-mongering, God-inspired hate speech goes largely unquestioned not because it is rooted in anything tangible or sensible but solely because it is not. As Jim has noted, the faithful grant themselves a free pass, and despite the nasty rap fundies try to taint them with, "liberals" and "activists" are, if anything, too accommodating in the face of absurdity. What has effectively happened in the U.S. is that millions of braying donkeys and bleating cattle now find themselves with the right to vote and express their suitably gelatinous and base views in all forms of media. One need not be "elitist" (although what the nation needs is a greater value placed on elitism) or a "lefty," or deem himself supremely intelligent, to notice or take offense at these things.

Obviously, such talk assumes that readers understand a single crucial fact: There's a huge epistemic difference between claiming something ought to be done because "God" wants it that way and claiming that something need not be done because "God" cannot have an opinion one way or the other. This isn't an out-of-hand dismissal of the positions many ostensibly on the right clamor for -- no more abortions, no gay marriage, no stem-cell research -- but an insistence that these things be considered on their own ethical merits and outside the context of an ancient, ruinous text which as Mark Twain humorously but pointedly noted, "...has noble poetry in it; and some clever fables; and some blood-drenched history; and some good morals; and a wealth of obscenity; and upwards of a thousand lies." That's right, folks, not every bone of contention out there can legitimately be framed in terms of a two-sided debate, and anything that invokes God's will, or Allah's or Shiva's or Brahma's or Vishnu's or Thor's or Zeus', cannot be taken seriously as a premise. If you cannot grasp these things, you're probably part of the problem.

What's hilarious (albeit in a "man-was-that-plane-crash-a-hoot!" kind of way) is that despite their "piss on everyone else" talk, when asked directly, these same lovelies will insist that they don't want to the the U.S. become a theocracy. This answer, like the one offered by ID creationists when rhetorically asked if "Intelligent Designer" is simply another name for God, is essentially a reflex -- a transparent lie aimed at squelching Establishment Clause static and failing miserably in the face of everything they stand for in word and in deed. "True Christians," who are helpless but to believe anything but that America should operate in rigid accordance with scriptural mandates, should save themselves the trouble of protesting otherwise, because although people on the whole can be distressingly numb of skull, most of us aren't nearly as stupid as we'd need to be to be fooled by such calumny.

All of these things, of course, are just the tip of the shitberg. While slack-faced but fiery-eyed others are linking stubby, webbed fingers and rocking to and fro in candlelit prayer vigils, I will keep half an eye on what happens. I have no plans to create any unwanted foetuses or marry any men myself, so there's only so much I might take umbrage. But until the confirmation hearings are over and perhaps thereafter, I will bear the disturbing sense of living each day in an eternal summer camp for 150 million Down syndrome victims, blissfully unaware of the teeming horseflies and mosquitoes and heat and the urine and foecal smearage in their swim trunks but angry as hell that someone hid the magic Etch-a-Sketch.


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