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Monday, November 30, 2009

An Interesting and Disappointing yet Unsurprising Experience

I went to a family reunion for the thanksgiving holiday. This is a biannual gathering of my fathers side of the family. I am aware of the religious and political views of most of that side of the family and I try to keep off of such subjects for the obvious reason of wanting to keep the peace.
I always do all the cooking for these gatherings and thus I am in the kitchen and out of the line of fire. However, relatives coming and talk to me a good bit so I can't avoid all potentially touchy subjects.
A little background, I come from a long line of Baptist missionaries and extreme right wingers. I do not fall into these categories. I am an atheist and tend toward very socially liberal. The one area that certain views cross paths is on the fiscal side of government. I short, I am fiscally conservative and socially liberal. I want the government out of my bedroom and my wallet.
OK, so I am cooking and my Aunt, my Dad's kid sister, now an elderly lady, comes in the kitchen and starts talking about some nebulous points of politics on the financial side. I agreed with her. I don't like current tax policy and I agreed with this one point. She took it as a wholesale buy-in on her politics and religion apparently. She made a sound like steam releasing pressure and says, "Whew, I am so glad you don't like Obama either." I hadn't said that. I don't like a lot of his policies but I don't hate the guy. She then goes on to say, and I am not kidding here, "I believe he is trying to destroy the country, but at least his presidency will hasten the return of Christ." She actually said that, 'hasten the return of Christ', Obama's presidency.
I knew the religious right despised the man but this was startling. Here was a woman in here 60s suggesting that he is the antichrist or some such boogieman. I had to bite my tongue not to laugh in her face.
People have for centuries been predicting that anything they disagree with was going to have this magical result, so the statement itself, aside from just pathetic, was unsurprising. What gets me is that they hate Obama this much yet look forward to what they think is the ultimate in positive events (how you can be so sick as to think that an event that involves genocide and mass destruction to an unprecedented scale (see Rev 14:20 for a lovely description)I'll never know)It seems that they should help him and try to pass every bill he endorses if they truly believe that they are 'hastening the return of Christ'. It makes no sense.

I always feel queasy after these conversations and wonder how in the hell I came from people who gleefully engage in us versus them, in-group morality systems.

1 comment:

  1. This whole Obama is ruining the country, but yay, it means that he's hastening the return of christ is quite a common theme amongst the right. I hear it all the time.



About Me

I am a husband and a father of two. I work as a network administrator. I am interested in religion and philosophy, though mostly from an external perspective.