Whole books have been written and have made the world laugh at what has been called GWB’s “special relationship to the English language”. Two examples. Washington, 2004 : “These hateful few who have no conscience, who kill at the whim of a hat.” New Hampshire Chamber of Commerce, 2000 : “I know how hard it is for you to put food on your family.” George W. was an exceptional President, at least for two reasons, this unique gift of garbling the language and his attack on Irak. It is not certain that the former will be forgotten before the latter.
What Presidents (and presidential candidates . . .) and other Heads of State say, the achievements of Noble Prize winners and even the five hundred songs of Bob Dylan, are all subjected to critical analysis. But the half-life of such analyses is usually short. Even the Beatles’ songs are fading into history though not yet oblivion (unlike many of Dylan’s), and few people care any more about the hidden meanings of “Yesterday” and “A Ticket to Ryde”. The works of Shakespeare, Thomas More and Plato will continue to be studied and to enrich coming generations. But no classic, ancient literature has ever been subjected to more painstaking and pointless analysis than the writings that make up Sacred Scripture.
Linguists, historians, theologians and exegetes devote their lives to dissecting what some of them claim to be the Word of God. The antiquity of the documents (at best ancient copies) but especially their supposed divine authorship explain such dedication. But even the non-professional, everyday, man-in-the-pew reader has to recognize that these texts are full of foolishness, immoral doctrine, fables and myths pretending to be history. This Blog has already mentioned enough of them to have no need to repeat examples. But what a prodigious waste of time it is to go over and over these arcane expressions of a primitive credulity that has proven itself to be without barriers of culture, national origin, educational level – or of … time. Their unfounded designation as “sacred” and “divinely inspired” has given them an aura of uniqueness which has survived, from time immemorial, the most virulent attacks on their origin, content and credibility. They are here to stay, and will continue to nourish the illusions and wishful thinking of many generations to come.
If only they were funny ! There is, among the 46 books of the Old Testament and the 27 different writings in the New, not a single comedy, not even a single chapter or verse that would raise a smile or a chuckle – unless it were that of a skeptic or one of derision like that which fills this Blog and which is expressed in its mantra :
R I D E N D A R E L I G I O