religious hypocrisy

Your Morning Metal (One Foot in Hell)

Detail of front cover art for 'Twisted into Form' by Forbidden, 1990, by Kent Mathieu.

In a strange way, the caricatures driving rebellion in metal-laden explorations of conscience do not seem so exaggerated today. Once upon a time, we argued about listening to the music. And it feels both strange and familiar, perhaps the one for the other. That is to say, the shape of these arguments going on today, about boys wearing skirts and girls having babies really does feel like nothing more than the heavy metal wars all over again, and this time for higher stakes. It isn’t fair, I don’t think, to say that we got it, understood the mere fact of caricaturization, but they didn’t. Still, that’s how it feels. We built monstrous, shadowy legends to represent the hatred we feared. They really do seem to be dressing up in it. Or, at least, that’s how it feels.

Regression! Progressive downfall! Grabbing what’s there and still wanting it all! On words they fall. Obsession! Religioius belief! Worshipped on Sunday, forgotten all week! One foot in Hell. Taking the truth from “The Book” and then twisting it, feeling they’re touched by the Lord. Loving their neighbor, yet tasting the flavor of sin but seeing no wrong. Cramming the wisdom that righteously flows in them, walking the crooked straight line. Closing of minds to these innocent crimes, now they’re deaf, dumb, and blind! One foot in Hell! Wretches! This pitiful man, preaching and teaching with Cross in hand. On words he falls. Into his final mistake; this fool was fooled, it was all give and take. One foot in hell. I look to the Heavens and call the Lord’s name. Praying on my knees, with much faith, and little doubt. I have a yearning for the answers to my calling in life. Am I wasting away on spirits of myth? Am I questioning the Lord’s prayer? Is this unholy temptation or my final realization? Please, God, if you’re there for me, give me wisdom for faith. Help me, Lord! God help me! Show me the way; point to the light. Is there a Heaven after I die? What is a truth, where does it lie? Give me the answer! Bare my soul, naked and cold! End confusion, shed my last tear! Take me, Lord! Open your Gates! End my deep sorrow! One foot in Hell. Who’s answering the bell?

Forbidden, “One Foot in Hell” (1990)

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A Cute and Cuddly Bunny

Sometimes it just isn’t a mystery. To wit, former Arkansas Governor Mike Huckabee, who says his opposition to marriage equality is not homophobia, but, rather, a matter of being on the right side of the Bible, which is in turn a wholly arbitrary standard. True, it does say, somewhere in there, that God really doesn’t like buggery and such, but it also says other things, like—

Cuddles McBunny-WunnyEvery one who divorces his wife and marries another commits adultery, and he who marries a woman divorced from her husband commits adultery.

(Luke 16.18, RSV)

—and—

Do you not know that the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived; neither the immoral, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor sexual perverts, nor thieves, nor the greedy, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor robbers will inherit the kingdom of God.

(1 Corinthians 6.9-10, RSV)

—and we might want to note, just for the sake of formality, that Huckabee, who feels confident enough in his biblical outlook regarding sinful lifestyles that he would question President Obama’s faith over marriage equality endorsed an adulterer named John McCain in the 2008 election, and carries on a creepy love affair with the ghost of an adulterer named Ronald Reagan. Which, in the end, is nothing particularly unusual, which in turn makes an excellent example of why there is no mystery about Mr. Fish’s latest cartoon.

____________________

Fish, Mr. “Hare Care”. Clowncrack. April 11, 2014.

CNN Political Unit. “Mike Huckabee: Not ‘homophobic’ but on the ‘right side of the Bible'”. Political Ticker. April 8, 2014.

Allen, Mike. “Huckabee called homosexuality ‘sinful'”. Politico. December 8, 2007.

Gentilviso, Chris. “Mike Huckabee Calls Out Obama’s ‘Christian Convictions’ On Gay Marriage”. The Huffington Post. April 12, 2014.

Maloy, Simon. “Huckabee’s Reagan Cartoon: Disco Muggers And American Exceptionalism”. Media Matters for America. August 11, 2011.

Novak, Robert. “McCain, Huckabee and the Evangelicals”. Townhall. May 12, 2008.

Image credit: Detail of image by Mr. Fish.