The hallmark of Religious Reich tantrums is the ability to lay a vast minefield of excuses for their intolerance. The foundation for those excuses always utilize two elements. Persecution and Martyrdom. No matter what issue the Reich has with society, by projecting their own faults onto others and denying the existence of those things in themselves, they create the perfect environment to manipulate and deceive through cries of persecution and martyrdom. In the cases of Rowan County, Kentucky clerk Kim Davis, and Casey County, Kentucky clerk Casey Davis (no relation), both elements are present and accounted for. Both claim persecution and both are martyring themselves, gaining tremendous favor from Religious Reich politicians, pundits, and zealots everywhere. In the process, the minefield of excuses is being laid throughout the political and social landscape, further threatening what little is left of our ability to coexist in this democratic republic.
Kim Davis refuses to yield to the law of the land by claiming that her god’s law takes precedence. This, coming from a woman who was divorced 3 times and married 4 times. And that’s just the tip of her personal iceberg. When confronted with this inconvenient fact, and others, Davis was quick to defend her holier-than-thou godly position by simply stating that her past was “forgiven”. In fundamentalism, hypocrisy is always easily avoided with a simple prayer, a quick acknowledgement of error for any number of possible “sins”, real or imagined, and including, but not limited to, adultery, divorce, and getting pregnant out of wedlock. Then a simple, heartfelt, self-righteous “I’m special” puts the matter to rest. Being “special” is awesome! It creates the illusion of righteousness and biblical purity necessary for fundamentalists to bear the burden of their “Shit I did and do now” in the face of the overwhelming hypocrisy of “Shit I demand no one else do because it makes me think about the shit I did and do now, and it makes me really uncomfortable because I can’t control my own shit when others get to have all the fun doing the shit I did and do now without them feeling guilty for it.” So, “I’m special” is really, really important. It’s the get-out-of-anything card for anything. But what happens when “I’m special” is called out for the hypocrisy anyway?
I can’t tell you how many people I’ve met throughout my life who’ve claimed to be “special” and found themselves confronted with the hypocrisy of their “specialness”. “Special” people always end up backed into their hypocritical corner, and the only way out for them is to resort to the most common phrase in fundamentalism… “I’m being persecuted!” In laymen’s terms “I’m caught in my own bullshit, so I better blame everyone else for my bigotry, stupidity, and ignorance” Now, keep in mind… In the United States of America over 80% of Americans claim to be christian, and christian churches dot the landscape like lights on the Las Vegas Strip. No one is feeding christians to lions. No one is campaigning to exterminate, drive away, or subjugate christians in any way. So, where does “I’m being persecuted!” come from? It comes from the need for retribution for revealing the authoritarian, tyrannical, fascist ideology and nature of the religion. It comes out of the need for vengeance for exposing their crusade to rid the world of “them” and replace it with a utopian delusion of “us”. It appears when fundamentalism is criticized in the free market of ideas and put under the microscope of reason, logic and science. It manifests itself when the pustule of bile that forms its core tenets is sliced open in the public square for all to see. It’s a projection onto others of the very thing fundamentalists know they will do to those who don’t believe as they do once they gain the power to do so.
Persecution to Martyrdom
No persecution claim is complete without the willingness to martyr oneself for the cause. While Kim Davis sits in jail contemplating her self-induced martyrdom, another potential martyr waits patiently for his opportunity to feed the machinations of the fundamentalist “Jizz for Jesus Festival of Champions”. Casey Davis has stated that he’s willing to give his life for his fundamentalist bigotry. The question isn’t whether or not someone is going to take his life. That’s extremely unlikely. No… I have to wonder if Casey Davis will become a violent antagonist willing to sacrifice his life to defend the indefensible. Think christian fundamentalist terrorist. Something along the lines of abortion clinic bombers and abortion doctor murderers. What better way is there for Casey Davis to prove his deluded point than intentionally instigating conflict, and playing the role of the antagonist, as a way to martyr himself? Although it’s probably unlikely that he would do such a thing, and more likely that his bluster is a bluff to garner attention… Somewhere, someone, or some group, is seriously considering the option. They are hearing the words. They are seeing the massive amount of attention being paid to those words. And they are, more than likely, far more deluded and unstable than either Davis’. Martyrdom for the delusion is not as far-fetched as you might think.
Control and Conquer
The end game of these theatrics is about controlling and conquering our society for theocratic ends. It’s not about same sex marriage. It’s not about any single social or political issue. It is an overall assault by fundamentalism on the freedoms and liberties of all, and the destruction of the shared reality of our finite lives. It is about dividing our country into us and them, and it’s being forced upon our country by people who are terribly afraid of reality, of death, of our ever-changing world, and of our free nation, born from Enlightenment values, values that embrace the human condition over the Bronze Age ignorance of primitive people.