Responding to my plea for comments, The Old Man writes:
Maybe you should post something on politics, religion, or sex, or maybe all 3 – that should get things going!
And you know I rarely write about controversial-type topics, partly because there’s already so much of that stuff on the Web, and partly because I abhor conflict. But I have to admit, this latest scandal involving the Pope and his minions has me thinking controversial thoughts — like, maybe it’s time for the Catholic Church to call it a day.
Frankly I just don’t see what purpose the Church serves in the modern world. (Or any organized religion for that matter…but let’s stay focused; I don’t have all day.) That’s assuming it ever did have one; authoritarianism and spirituality have always seemed like a strange mix to me, and while no doubt sincere Catholics and Catholic charities have done a lot of good in the world, in historical context the Church looks more like an instrument of control than a positive force.
In truth I don’t think the Church’s current problems with sexual abuse and cover-ups should come as much of a surprise. The unnatural institution of celibacy is bound to lead to some twisted scenarios, and the rigid hierarchy of the Church is just the kind of setup that breeds dark, festering secrets.
If I wanted to take it a step further, I could point to the damage that the Church’s emphasis on breeding and opposition to birth control have done to the planet. It’s pretty well apparent at this point that the human race is a virus with shoes, and that a lot of our problems are not unrelated to the simple fact that there are just too many damn people placing demands on a finite supply of resources. In a rational world, our governments would have gotten together 60 years ago and started airdropping condoms by the metric ton over every inhabited area on the planet…but no. That would have offended people’s religious sensibilities; so here we are on the brink of 7 billion with no end in sight…until, maybe, some plague comes along to thin the herd a little bit. Not that I’m happy about that idea, but it might be for the best; except, of course, that people turn to religion in times of crisis, and that could be the only thing that saves the Catholic Church at this point.
Well, that’s enough controversial statements for one day…now have at it.
Well game on! Frankly, while I hold no brief for Catholicism, it seems that getting worked up about it, when a much more retrograde belief system continues trying to impose itself on our world is sort of ethnocentric. In the scale of the greatest harm being done to the greatest number, especially women, it’s hard to top items like the following, which was in today’s Kansas City Star, reprinted from the NY Times–
Somali Islamist Group Silences School Bells–“School principals in the town of Johwar…were summoned to a meeting and informed that the bells no longer could be used because they sounded like church bells….
“Al-Shabab also outlawed the observance of internationally recognized days such as World AIDS Day, saying that only Islamic festivals could be recognized.
“Insurgent groups in Somalia increasingly have alienated the population by imposing a harsh interpretation of Islam, stoning people to death…..They also have issued strict edicts…banning in their territory such things as bras and soccer games….”
At least the Catholic Church tries to come to terms with the modern world. It doesn’t try to impose on the world “lock, stock & barrel” what is was in the 9th or 10th centuries!
Oh, and on the matter of controlling population growth: Ya’ gotta have a continually growing base of young folks coming along who work and pay taxes to keep the Ponzi scheme that is Social Security solvent and pay the interest on ever increasing deficits.
There ya’ go–that oughta get the ol’ “blogosphere” pumping!
The idea that the Philter “abhors conflict” runs counter to experience and observation, and I reject it in the strongest possible terms. Abhors a vaccuum- maybe. But abhors conflict – never.
It’s only you I have it in for, Magoo. Otherwise I’m peaceful as a lamb.
Fundalmentalism is the problem. KILLTHE EXTREMISTS!
No bras and soccer games in Somalia? Why not go a little easier on the population and just forbid polo and jock straps.
Old Man, your son proved to me that he is ageist after all. He doesn’t like the song “When I’m 64”.