Thursday, May 7, 2009

Tea-baggers, Galts, and Other Pachyderms

Worthy of mention, from Daylight Atheism:
[NOM Board Member, Orson Scott] Card isn't the most prominent member of the religious right to call for armed rebellion because the government won't cater to his wishes. He's not even the first. (Rick Perry may have that honor, along with a substantial portion of the Texas Republican Party.) But it is frightening that, as society moves away from accepting their views, these calls for revolution become more and more common among them.

What this shows, I think, is that the religious right is unwilling to participate in the social contract: the understanding that we all have a voice in directing the course of the state, but the price of that freedom is not always having one's own way. The religious right has no interest in that bargain. If they don't get to win, they don't want to participate. And as soon as events are not going their way, they immediately begin calling for armed revolt and insurrection, determined to achieve their goals by violence if they can't achieve them by democracy. The most insane aspect of this is that no one is taking away any of their rights - their clamoring for rebellion is purely because they can no longer control the lives of others.

This is what is silly, but frightening, about the extremely vocal right-wing Republican fringe. If you won't let them win, they'll take their ball and go home, just like kindergartners. Or maybe they won't invite you to their birthday party. But when they take their ball and go home, they would love it if they could cause everyone who wouldn't let them win to disintegrate in a painful way into dust and blow away. Or the people who aren't invited to their birthday party should die, disappear, and never be uncooperative with the toddler's desires ever again! It's toddler behavior, but these are supposed to be grown-ups. A toddler wishes another person dead or vanished because toddlers haven't developed a moral sense or empathy or a sense of responsibility. Toddlers are interested in doing what THEY want, when THEY want, and others must participate, assist, agree, or DIE. That's why we don't allow toddlers, for the most part, to choose how they will live their lives, much less allowing them to decide for others. They require supervision and education into how to hold up their ends of the social contract.

These latter day (there ya' go, a reference for you, Orson Scott Card, whose Ender novels have given me much now-tarnished-and-slightly-nauseous delight! Darn you, man! Grow UP!) revolutionaries seem to have been poorly supervised and educated. If these grown ups can't tell everyone how to live, they threaten to destroy society as we know it. What they would put in its place, in light of their vicious playground justice mentality, is not anything I like to contemplate.