RANGER AGAINST WAR: Praise the Lord and Pass the Ammunition <

Tuesday, January 16, 2007

Praise the Lord and Pass the Ammunition

"Praise the Lord and Pass the Ammunition"

Song by Frank Loesser (1942)

A recent AP-AOL news poll of American's predictions for 2007 found that "25% anticipate the second coming of Jesus Christ." Fully one-quarter of your brethren. Maybe I should be comforted to know that at least they do not think he is already come.

Other recent polls show that over 80% of Americans believe in creationism, with only 15% solidly behind evolution. Combine this with the convictions of some dear Christian friends who try and convince me that the End Days are nigh, and that the Middle East scenario had to come down just as it has in order for them to gain their glorified bodies and ascend to the Elysian Fields, and one is left wondering about the contrivance of this muddled war.

These faithful see in Revelations a road map for the Middle East in which we have engaged today. Forget that it is an apocryphal book of the canon. Its grisly ending appeals to some collective guilt in the human psyche which longs for a reckoning, for atonement and forgiveness.

Of course, because so many of them have made such a jumble of their lives and bodies, they need this salvation, which shall ironically arrive with their (our) destruction.

Somehow, they take great comfort in this terrible swift sword, which may only deal out a death by a thousand cuts. "Victory shall be mine," I hear them say. It is the conviction of the believer. And it is not that belief is so bad, but simply that it is earned by the condemnation of everyone else.

Even the hastening of this cataclysmic event is not necessarily deemed a bad thing. And certainly, the heretics have it coming. And one day, the wheat will be separated from the chaff, but if you are an American Christian, you are living on the City on the Hill--Augustine's City of God.

Because we have been waiting so patiently, and He would not come, we will bring Him, or at least some fair approximation to the Rapture. Juan Cole explained recently that Muqtada al-Sadr's movement is also a millenialist undertaking, and that they, too, are waiting for the return of the Savior at any moment. We're all waiting for Godot.

The only difference is, these two sides are coming from different millenia. Perhaps we're a little more sedate after two false starts. What is certain is that this Middle East junket is bringing a wrath of sorts upon our collective head. It is life mimicking art, as we have hastened this showdown in the Holy Land.

--by Lisa


Blogger Lurch said...

Are we considering (in this country) the 20th century manifestation of the Know Nothing Party, also known as the Native American Party? The sense of exceptionalism (and entitlement) that swept through the nation as we crossed the Eastern (Appalachian) barrier and displaced the real Native Americans must have been pretty impressive to view.

Tuesday, January 16, 2007 at 4:30:00 PM GMT-5  
Blogger rangeragainstwar said...

Exactly. You say it "must've been pretty impressive," but you are living in the midst of that same ethos.

I fear that sense of exceptionalism persists, and sadly, its fires are stoked by having a divinely designated adversary (this works for both sides here.)


Tuesday, January 16, 2007 at 5:25:00 PM GMT-5  

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