As an American, I am surrounded by fundamentalist Christians on a daily basis. Most of them are closet Apocalyptics, counting the hours to the end of the world. In the lunch room of my work recently, talk concerned itself with natural disasters- Katrina, the Tsunami, the Philippine earthquake, the Pakistan earthquake etc... I pointed out a picture in a TIME magazine of a crushed and almost unrecognizable body of a Pakastani woman half covered in rubble. One of my notorious Christian co-workers in perfect seriousness exclaimed, "they must have pissed God off again".
These people are everywhere here. They lick their lips and get excited when hundreds of thousands of people die.
The same people will claim that American's have lost their morals and values. They will lash out against gays and stem cell research. As laughable as it is that Americans harbor such hysterically asinine and antiquated superstitions about an agrarian deity who ordered genocides and demanded animal sacrifices, believe it or not, these beliefs motivate our electorate and occupy our national political dialogue.
Religious fundamentalism is a mental disorder. It is a tragic memetic virus. It's insincerity of values is so blatant and gross as to be worthy of complete quarantine, yet it's incessant mutations over the years lead to new strains and more insidious virulence.
It is of profound astonishment to me that these fundamentalist Christians go out of their way to condemn terrorist acts as "inhuman" and "evil". "How could anyone do that to innocent women and children" you might hear from a sincere and loving church goer.
But it's almost like the very "word of God" they admire has been thrown out the door and reinvented. It doesn't occur to them that their own deity commanded the slaughter of women and children, infants, mothers, fathers, sons and daughters by the tens of thousands. And not with machine guns or bombs, but by hand, with the sword.
There are numerous websites outlining biblical atrocities. It is simply jawdropping when you place them all together and go through them one by one.
Deuteronomy 20:16 (King James Version)
16But of the cities of these people, which the LORD thy God doth give thee for an inheritance, thou shalt save alive nothing that breatheth:
And this guy's not shitting either, as you will see if you are ever bored enough to read the bible. Now look, I know I'm an atheist and all with a relative sense of morals and values but the way I was raised, this is called "genocide", and it's wrong. It's evil. Even if God says to do it, it's still evil. It's, dare I say it, religious terrorism. But not just any religious terrorism, but terrorism on a scale and level of violence that would make any Islamic fundamentalist flinch.
Lets take a video camera back and watch while it happens. There are rivers of blood flowing down streets, women crying and running with their children in their arms, infants being thrown into the air and impaled on the points of dull swords, heads and appendages hacked off, animals brutally slain and left to bleed to death, entire families burned in their houses. I have often wondered exactly how insane any human being would have to be to spend countless hours practicing genocide over men, women and children by the tens of thousands... with a sword! How long does it take to kill that many people? Days? Weeks? Do you have to stop to sharpen it occasionally? Does the ground turn to bright red mud which you slip and slosh around in as you try to gain traction for your next thrust into the neck of the ten year old girl holding hands with her mother and trying to run away? Do the corpses stink after awhile?
But what is even more insane is that anyone, ANYONE, in the modern world would believe in and worship such a deity whilst claiming moral superiority. This is the crisis of our age. How do you stop the madness? How do you get believers (who tend to be morally decent people by and large) to acknowledge the insanity of their own scriptures?
And people wonder why folks like myself object to the display of the ten commandments. An honering of a mass murderer, a terrorist, a bane of humanity. If they display the commandments, they should display the punishments for breaking them as well.