Monday, June 25, 2012

Random Bible Verse of the Day: Nebechunezzar's Revenge (kinda)

nebuchadnezzar
So god says "Go ahead and kill the bastards
and I'll take care of the victim blaming!"  ha!
A while back, I did a post on 2 Kings 24, where God totally punks four generations of Jersusalem's kings by 1) ordering Nebuchadnezzar's army to attack Jerusalem and 2) smiting the broken city each time they succumbed to the army that God himself sent to attack them! What an asshole.

But really is it surprising anymore?

In an effort to continue our look at the most popular verses on biblegateway.com, we come to the second most popular verse: Jeremiah 29:11.
"For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future."
Sounds so very uplifting and positive.  Maybe we should get the context of the passage...

Turns out, Nebuchadnezzar decided to take prisoners on one of his god inspired attacks and took the king, queen, court officials, skilled workers and artisans back to Babylon with him.  So our hero-prohpet - Jeremiah - sent a letter to the prisoners telling them that God says everything is gonna be great...at least once they're dead!
This is what the Lord Almighty, the God of Israel, says to all those I carried into exile from Jerusalem to Babylon: “Build houses and settle down; plant gardens and eat what they produce. Marry and have sons and daughters; find wives for your sons and give your daughters in marriage, so that they too may have sons and daughters. Increase in number there; do not decrease. Also, seek the peace and prosperity of the city to which I have carried you into exile. Pray to the Lord for it, because if it prospers, you too will prosper.”
Hey buddy, thanks for exiling us to hang out with the guy that you told to plunder our city, but we'd really just like to go home.  This really sounds like a cheap sales job after a botched operation.  Is this supposed to be punnishment - plant gardens and have lots of kids and seek peace and prosperity?  If so what are we to learn; if not, why are we here?
10 This is what the Lord says: “When seventy years are completed for Babylon, I will come to you and fulfill my good promise to bring you back to this place. 11 For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future. 12 Then you will call on me and come and pray to me, and I will listen to you. 13 You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart. 14 I will be found by you,” declares the Lord, “and will bring you back from captivity.[b] I will gather you from all the nations and places where I have banished you,” declares the Lord, “and will bring you back to the place from which I carried you into exile.”
 Yeah buddy, thanks again for promising to listen to us.  Any reason we have to wait 70 years??? We'll all be dead by then....ohhh I see what you did there.  So when you say "I'll bring you back to the place from which I carried you into exile" you don't really mean us individuals.  I see.  Well, thanks for everything; that army you sent to kill all our friends and neighbors surely taught us a lesson not to lose to an ARMY OF GOD!


I wonder how many people that read this second most popular verse actually consider it in the written context?  Probably very few, presuming the popular verses are ones that people find most inspiring.  Unless the faithful find a patronizing deity to be particularly inspiring.

Once again, reading the Bible only reinforces my view that the christian god is a capricious, manipulative douchebag that would deserve no worship if he were real (which he's not).

Friday, June 22, 2012

Don't Alarm the Public

Ahh! I've been blinded by breasts!
When you think about it, its so silly how we (i.e. governments and authorities) try to avoid disturbing the public's ever so sensitive sensibilities.  Well, maybe that's just the symptom of the fact that the public's sensibilities are so sensitive.

Like breasts.

We go to such great lengths to ensure that the human body is covered up in sometimes arbitrary ways to the extent that it has become institutionalized in society that to not cover up certain parts is offensive.  It seems so crazy that we are so ashamed of our anatomy that when others don't share that irrational shame, they are indeed shamed by everyone else.

What is the actual impact to society - except for the fact that the most sensitive will lose their collective heads over it - of public nudity?  Why isn't this considered a personal choice as would be the choice to wear a hat or not (there are probably some cultures where wearing a hat (or not) is taboo)?  And don't tell me that some people can't control themselves, therefore cover up.  Its the same bad argument as saying we shouldn't draw Mohammed because it will cause certain people to go on a killing spree.  Its victim-blaming, a capitulation to the heckler's veto, and orthogonal to free-expression.

I got thinking about this absurdity of modern culture from a news story where a woman who had breast cancer wanted to swim topless in a public pool because apparently wearing a top caused searing pain and that warm water on her chest would soothe the pain.

After initially being denied access to the pool bathing topless, the Parks and Recreation Superintendent decided that the self-described androgynous woman - with the physique of a young man without nipples as a result of the double mastectomy - would be allowed to bathe topless because "[i]n this case I see nothing that might alarm the public."

Which begs the question, what would otherwise alarm the public.  And we all know the answer: bare breasts.

Sound the alarms!!1!