A distinction

Published December 5th, 2007 by Bobby Henderson

A distinction:

I appreciate what you’re saying, and I think it’s important to hear. In writing with such wry and caustic humour, you’re able to really effectively reveal the absurdity of what’s happened. There is a difference, however, between parody and ridicule. At points your sarcasm (“one third time for logical conjecture,” etc.) becomes quite harsh and implies that the religious view denies logic and reasoning wholesale.

You’re dealing with something that, more than being a “precious belief” per se, is an important part of many people’s identity. Many define themselves, not just peripherally, but primarily as “Christians.” Attacking that belief system without at least giving it some hint of respect or sensitivity is akin to mocking a person’s chosen lifestyle, personality, or preferences as not just different but illogical and wrong. You can’t in one section write ironically about the deductive demerits of believing in written scripture as a priori truth and then claim to avoid attacking the very heart of a person’s belief system and philosophical identity. You have literally brought the very basis of not only Christian teaching but religious belief in general into question, and in a fairly patronising and uncompromising way.

I’m not asking you to “present both sides” or any equally bullshit measure. But I am asking you to be empathetic. When criticising the core of a person’s self-identity (what they believe in), it’s important to be a little more humane.

Ryan



110 Responses to “A distinction”

  1. Yellow Beard says:

    “Attacking that belief system without at least giving it some hint of respect or sensitivity is akin to mocking a person’s chosen lifestyle, personality, or preferences as not just different but illogical and wrong.”

    How about Christian’s attack of homosexuals?

  2. My Own First Mate says:

    I know it’s a bit off subject, but here goes. Does anyone else think that “ID” looks like an emoticon symbolizing an extremely happy Xylon (a robot in Battlestar Galactica)? Just thought I’d ask.

    Noodles

  3. Pluto says:

    @Yellow Beard – I know of at least one evangelical Christian who loves gays (Yes it’s Haggard again) ! And don’t forget the Catholics who encourage the molestation of little boys by covering the incidents up and continuing to employ the perpetrator.

  4. neal says:

    As we become an increasingly pluralistic nation, it is going to become harder and harder for the xtain right wing to maintain we are a Xtian nation. The flap about a congressman taking the oath of office on a Queran instead of a bible is a classic example of the sense of entitlement these people exhibit. If someone want to swear on the book of Mormon or the writing of Bhudda or Confucius, we should all be saying one thing to the Christian right wing—GET OVER IT!

  5. Pluto says:

    @ My Own First Mate- “Does anyone else think that “ID” looks like an emoticon symbolizing an extremely happy Xylon (a robot in Battlestar Galactica)?”
    .
    Now that you mention it, it dose look like a happy Christian! Look ‘ID’ his eyes are tightly shut and he has a big gormless smile!

  6. BW022 says:

    Actually there is no difference between parody and ridicule.
    .
    par·o·dy (pr-d) KEY
    .
    NOUN: pl. par·o·dies
    . A literary or artistic work that imitates the characteristic style of an author or a work for comic effect or ridicule.
    .
    The FSM did not decend from the great sauce for purely comedic effect. Thus, the main point is to ridicule the creationists/ID movement, it’s followers, and their belief systems. Saying not to use parody to ridicule people is saying that one can only use it for comedy. Sorry, there is a serious point to the FSM — and that is to make fun of those in the ID movement.
    .
    No… it isn’t nice. However, perhaps it gives folks a glimps of what classrooms would be like it ID (or any other religious teachings) go in. If an adult finds FSM parody of their religious believes bad, imagine what a Jewish, atheist, Mormon, Roman Catholic, devil worshipper, etc. teacher, textbook, administrator, other students, etc., etc. could do with more serious attacked on your religious beliefs — aimed directly at your children in a captive setting, without you being there, for two hours a day for nine months of the year for six years?
    .
    However, there is an easy way to prevent this from happening… don’t put your religious views into public schools. Your children will be safe from FSM worshippers parodying your religious views in classrooms and everyone elses children will be safe from yours.

  7. El Peatieablo says:

    @My Own First Mate
    “I know it’s a bit off subject, but here goes. Does anyone else think that “ID” looks like an emoticon symbolizing an extremely happy Xylon (a robot in Battlestar Galactica)? Just thought I’d ask.”
    .
    It does sort of look like that, but cylons don’t have mouths (well the centurions anyway). I like to think that Adama shot the cylon so that it looked like it was smiling.
    .
    While we’re on the subject of cylons, does anybody else think that fundies are kinda like them? I mean, they take their belief in god way too seriously, seem to like killing anything different that them, and they just don’t know when to give up.

  8. St. Arrrrgyle says:

    Who will be the first elected official to be sworn in on the Gospel of the FSM?

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