Sunday, March 11, 2012

The Church of the Enlightened Mind

I’m going to start my own religion.

It’s going to be called The Church of the Enlightened Mind, and it will have as its First Commandment, “Don’t be so damned stupid.”

Other commandments will include such things as “Try to cut other people some slack now and then,” “No, really, that’s none of your business,” “Your rights depend on your responsibilities,” “We’re in this together so knock it off with the selfishness or we really will let you go Galt and starve,” “Read a book, why don’t you?” and “Do the math.”

Also, “No field, no ups,” which should put the designated hitter rule to bed once and for all.

But the big one is the first one. Whenever anyone does or says anything, I shall weigh it in the balance and determine whether the First Commandment applies.

As the sole prophet and representative deity-like figure for this new religion, I shall be the final judge with regard to this question on all matters. Those who fail the test shall be told in no uncertain terms, “Don’t be so damned stupid,” and then their decisions, actions and intentions will be promptly rendered null and void, their ability to continue with such decisions, actions and intentions removed, and as a last resort repeat offenders shall be stricken from the record and placed in zoos where they will be fed and cared for in a strictly controlled, decision-free environment.

With my new religion, I shall claim religious discrimination against any stupid people who attempt to force me to accept their decisions, their laws or their efforts to restrict the culture in any way. I shall tell them they will burn in Hell – a sterile room carpeted in sturdy berber with only a copy of The Collected Humor of Ayn Rand for entertainment – for all eternity for their temerity. I will sue them in courts of law. I will constitute myself as a supermajority in the legislature and outvote them, if I bother to let them vote at all.

Hear me, Teabaggers? Two can play at this game.

When you pass laws restricting access to necessary medicines - medicines that cover an astonishingly wide range of health care concerns - simply because your tiny little reptilian brains can’t handle the thought of people actually having or enjoying sex, I will say, “Don’t be so damned stupid” and wipe those laws off the books. I will claim the Mandate of Heaven while doing so, and I will tell you that my deity thinks yours is an ass. My guess is that your deity probably agrees that you are presenting Him as such and would be so relieved that finally someone is coming to His defense that He will support me.

When you threaten to destroy the fiscal health of a great republic in order to take from the poor and give more to your billionaire puppetmasters, I will say, “Don’t be so damned stupid” and institute new more progressive policies, including a return to the tax rates of the 1950s, when this country was at its economic and military peak, just for the sheer thrill of hearing you scream in impotent rage.

When you spread lies about the founding of this great republic and try to claim that a group of highly educated eighteenth-century Enlightenment gentlemen would naturally agree with whatever twaddle is coming out of the mouths of modern right-wing extremist evangelical hucksters who would have likely tried to burn Thomas Jefferson, Ben Franklin and John Adams at the stake had they been around then, I will say, “Don’t be so damned stupid” and put all of the money that is currently going into the political action funds of such hucksters into public education instead – public education that will include not only courses in the actual history of this great republic, but extensive coursework in critical thinking, science, literature, human psychology, basic math, and biologically sound sex education as well, all of which will be mandatory because I am, after all, the only vote that matters.

When you attempt to place your private morals above the health and safety of your fellow citizens, I will say, “Don’t be so damned stupid” and remove you from any positions of responsibility, power or influence that require you to deal with those citizens. That goes for everything from legislators to pharmacists.  You will be handed shovels and pointed toward the nearest public latrines, which will be named for you when you retire.

When you attempt to impose draconian restrictions on people based solely on their country of origin, preferred language, skin color, sexual apparatus or presumed status as “not a real American,” I will say, “Don’t be so damned stupid” and rewrite those laws to apply solely to you.

When you spend hours of my life I will never get back insisting that you are pro-life and pro-marriage and then sponsor legislation designed to destroy actual marriages, render future marriages impossible, make it easier to carry firearms into schools and shopping centers, get us into unnecessary and futile wars that are poorly planned from the get go, release corporations from all liability for their faulty or dangerous products, and cut funding from schools, public food programs, clean air and water regulations, and occupational safety laws, I will say, “Don’t be so damned stupid” and time-warp you to 1875, where you will die before you turn forty because you’ve gotten your wish.

When you attempt to deny to the citizens of this republic their sovereign right of suffrage through gerrymandered districts, spurious charges of voter fraud, Voter Suppression Acts, poll taxes, or other such measures, or when you attempt to run the government as your own private fiefdom, not letting the citizens keep track of you or your actions, paying private lawyers from public funds, passing cut-and-paste legislation from lobbyists, refusing public hearings and ignoring the voice of the people to whom you owe service, I will say, “Don’t be so damned stupid,” and turn you out like the insolent carpetbaggers you are. You will be forbidden from any office forever, and told to get a real job.

There is a lot of damned stupidity in this country these days, and I will be very, very busy. I may have to have a recording made, lest my voice fail.

The Church of the Enlightened Mind will be open to all who accept its tenets, regardless of age, ethnicity, race, gender, sexual orientation, educational status, professional status, geographic location or other such characteristics. Those who violate its tenets will be removed. As before, I will be the sole judge of such violations. Because it’s my church.

And then I shall have a sacramental whiskey sour, put my feet up with a good book, and rest, for it is good.


vince said...

I think I shall become a follower of this new religion you're starting, as I don't see it conflicting with the one I currently follow (although many fellow followers would disagree and currently disown me.)

Perhaps there will also be sacramental rum and cokes, and sacramental amaretto sours?

David said...

Welcome to the Church of the Enlightened Mind, Vince!

The Church of the Enlightened Mind is a tolerant faith that makes no claims to exclusivity among its believers, so long as they continue to adhere to the basic tenets of the Church. If those "fellow followers" get upset by these tenets, perhaps they need to ask how well they're following their own church too.

Sacramental drinks other than whiskey sours shall be permitted provided the believer waves their hands over them and says, "For the purposes of the Church of the Enlightened Mind I hereby declare this to be a whiskey sour."

David said...

Actually, I think I shall change the drinks incantation to, "As far as the Church of the Enlightened Mind knows, this is a whiskey sour."

Because I can do that.

Tom said...

I might be interested in said CotEM if you would kindly do one small thing for me? It's that public latrine/shovel thing. Doesn't sound very sanitary to my way of thinking. I'm sure the thought of having offenders doing hard labor near, or even in, such collections of excrement makes a twinkle come to your eye, but I think you could come up with something which wouldn't be so onerous to the public sensibility. I'm sure Enlightened Minds see the merit in such a suggestion. Please consider. Then I could whole-heartedly join such a group.

David said...

Tom, I was thinking in terms of national parks and other remote camping areas, which would serve the dual purpose of removing those people from day-to-day interaction with civilization and requiring them to consider the physical manifestation of their thought processes at the same time.

But the Church of the Enlightened Mind is always open to positive suggestions! I shall consider what alternatives might be suitable.

Welcome, provisionally, to the CoEM!

neurondoc said...

Can I be a lurker member -- not attend services, only donate what I want, etc? If so, then I'm in.

David said...

The Church of the Enlightened Mind does not have required services or donations. It is a way of life, not a weekly appointment.

Welcome aboard!

neurondoc said...

Woohoo! However, if the weekly meeting was, say, Monday afternoon, it might be more palatable.

Judy Farrell said...

I like your church David, but it can never be democratically governed as then it would fall into the same trap. I love your post. My blood pressure increased as I am reminded how angry I really am. Thanks.

David said...

Hi Judy - there is no part of the Church of the Enlightened Mind that is intended to be governed democratically. I am the sole prophet and deity-like representative. I magnanimously agree to allow democracy in the world - indeed, I insist on it being followed in the United States, as far as it complies with the governmental structures of the republic set up by the Founders - but the CoEM is mine.

Tom said...

Ohhh, National Parks. Kinda like "out of sight, out of Enlightened Mind."

I could go with that. Out of sight is outtasight, Man!

John the Scientist said...

Whisky is bog peat soaked in alcohol.

Real enlightened minds drink homemade Russian vodka. :D

David said...

Whisky is bog peat soaked in alcohol.

You say that like it's a bad thing.

Real enlightened minds drink homemade Russian vodka. :D

"As far as the Church of the Enlightened Mind knows, this is a whiskey sour."

John the Scientist said...

I'll have hyou konw I had my first bootleg vodka in a country that no longer exists. :D

Unknown said...

Miss head in the sand, here. Are the Teabaggers saying that they won't reimburse OC's?
Please say it isn't so.

David said...

Bea - what's an OC?