Tuesday, April 19, 2005

Seeing Signs Where None Exist

Ok, this is me, climbing up on my soapbox….

People, people – please get a life!

Several news stories have recently attracted my attention and again caused me to question the sanity of many of my fellow humans. Let’s start with the story of yet another Mary sighting.

In Chicago last week, hundreds of otherwise normal people forced police to cordon off an area underneath an underpass on the Kennedy Expressway because there is a salt stain on the concrete wall. And these misguided folk want to get a close look at the stain because it looks like the Virgin Mary, or so they say.

It’s always been somewhat of a mystery to me how people know what the Virgin Mary looked like. There were no cameras in her day and I don’t believe she had a portrait commissioned.

Of course, it’s the same with Jesus. Nobody these days has a clue what the man really looked like. Mel Gibson apparently believes he looked a lot like James Caviezel.

Anyway, getting back to the wall stain, the Illinois Dept. of Transportation said it was treating it the same way they would treat any other roadside “memorial.” They don’t plan to remove it.

It’s a pity. Sandblasting it off the wall might send these people back to work where they can be productive instead of standing around, or kneeling, on the side of a highway, praying to some faux virgin replica.

It’s funny how otherwise sane individuals find it so easy to have faith is salt stains, misshapen potato chips, and reflections on the windows of office buildings but they have no faith in the science that has made it possible for them to exist in the modern world. In fact, they will go to almost any length to keep their children from learning about the proven concepts of science in school, even resorting to disclaimers on textbooks.

Witness the behavior of several IMAX theater owners across the south as disclosed in another recent news story. There is a new IMAX film out about undersea volcanoes that will be making its rounds this summer. But some of the theaters will not be showing it.

Although the movie is about underwater volcanoes, it happens to mention the theory of evolution when it talks about the peculiar forms of microscope life that exist around these undersea vents. And because it makes mention of the “E-word,” several theaters are knuckling under to pressure from the ubiquitous religious fanatics that infest the South. So they have decided not to show the heathen film.

A theater spokesperson said it might offend those who have strong religious beliefs. Well then, maybe they shouldn’t go see the film if they’re offended by it. I’m offended because some theaters are not showing the film. The action should offend all open-minded, intelligent human beings who choose to see the world the way it really is and not as is depicted in some ancient fairy tale about creation.

It’s fine to have faith in God. But I truly believe that if God exists, He must surely be looking down on His creation and shaking His head in utter amazement at how naïve some of His followers really are.

But then what can you expect from all those far-right-wing fans of our current president? I hope they remember what happened to the last guy who followed the advice of a bush. He wound up wandering aimlessly in the desert for 40 years.

Ok, I feel better now that I’ve gotten that out of my system. So this is me getting down off my soapbox, at least until I read about somebody, somewhere, doing something else really stupid. Sadly, it probably won’t take long.

1 comment:

Beena Jain said...

That's hillarious! You know what? Darwin inserted that clause in his statement about God working inside of evolution so as not to anger the religious, God believing crowd. And the theatres are scared to show a movie for a similar reason so as not to anger the crowd? Ha! Seems like we're still living in the Stone Age. By the way, don't get me wrong, I mean I believe in God and not really in evolution but my belief cannot in anyway interfere in another's right to believe and speak out about their belief.

As for the imprints regarding, 'salt stains, misshapen potato chips, and reflections on the windows of office buildings,' pizzas etcetera, I believe that no matter how far science may have advanced, the weird or extraordinary will always fascinate us. So, if another's rights are not underway, we must learn to give one the benefit of doubt. Compromise will always make people more happy, no matter where you are or what the situation. So, give those people the benefit of doubt for a while for the Virgin Mary scenario and move on.