Sunrise over a chapel's steeple

On the rise theocracy in America.

The “Support the Troops” ideology has already created a new class of Übermensch (and occasionally Überfrau)

The new HobbyLobby ruling and perverse reasoning threatens us with that scary standard that reflects on why we (most of us) departed Europe.

While freedom of religion was considered sacrosanct, the new attitude towards religion codifies religious sentiment as the highest reason for objecting to or adopting legal behavior — it’s not that freedom is protected — it now requires we tip-toe most quietly around public displays of holiness. Or as Hillary would say, we now have to bring it a pillow.

Of course if you’re an atheist (as I am), the problem becomes obvious – no deeply held beliefs of mine rise to the level of seriousness that a “religious” belief will. Presumably, any religious believer can petition to be let out of civic duties or legal obligations, and be given full consideration of the Constitution, including back flip double cartwheel contortions to make it fit.

Meanwhile, I have only to rely on “conscientious” or “considerably evolved aesthetics and logic” reasons for bowing out of any requirements. Aside from avoiding military duty, those justifications are given short shrift.

So if you’re going to have any sway in this Brave Retro World, make sure you belong to some kind of evangelic or standard religion (none of that moronic Pastafarian bit, please) in which to frame your request to government. Of course they’ll do their darndest to make sure this is for sincere reasons, and not just a frivolous facade for purely partisan reasons (like the due diligence in prosecuting mis-use of non-profit status by the IRS — only to be reversed by mob outcry)

The short version is this — having evolved, sane reasons for things is second place to having a crazed hysterical view of the world informed by some generally acknowledged religious cult organization. All those folks with visions of deities and believers in archaic tomes now have a fast path to the Supreme Court, and for some reason “feed and clothe the poor” or “turn the other cheek” aren’t the law-contradicting sentiments that will receive a good hearing. No, it’s superstitious stuff like snake handling and speaking in tongues and the sin of menstruation and a brimfire of hell’s perdition.

Come to think of it, if you grab a religious theme from most any Stephen King book — Carrie, Salem’s Lot, Children of the Korn — you’re liable to find a good whacko deeply held inviolable religious belief to justify a petition to the Supreme Court. And for some reason, that requires us as atheists or even sane religious types to go out of our way to cater to nutjob fringe anti-scientific beliefs.

Who knew we were such a tolerant people.

Photo by Michael Arrighi released under a Creative Commons license.