Scientology Vs South Park? Wrong War
"War is not an adventure. It is a disease." Antoine de Saint-Exupery
Everybody's all worked up because Tom Cruise might have influenced the airing (or rather 'non-airing') of one South Park episode -- out of pique over their treatment of Scientology.
And Isaac Hayes has quit as the voice of Chef, claiming the show demonstrates religious "intolerance and bigotry" -- code for "makes fun of Scientology." [Or maybe he hasn't, depends what you read.]
Bloggers are in a tizzy. Quotes from South Park creators are flying. It's now a major international news story.
Reality check: neither Cruise, Hayes, Scientology nor South Park has any meaningful impact on our lives. The War in Iraq does. It's costing us thousands of lives and billions of dollars and causing endless destruction -- all of which will shape our future for years to come.
Why the American public chooses to care more about a lunatic fringe of celebrities than about the dangerously mainstream fundamentalist Christian fanatics in the White House and Congress is a question for all of us.First, Tom Cruise is an idiot, a pimp for a bogus religion and really, just a silly little man with a big fat over inflated ego.
Second, Isaac Hayes is a hypocrite and another Scientology stooge. He never protested when South Park skewered Christians, Catholics and Jews, but suddenly grew a conscience when they took on Scientology.
Third, Scientology is arguably the most ridiculous "religion" on the planet, based on one man's ultimate fantasy of outer space and on each believer's inner moron.
Finally--and most important--South Park is a TV show. It's satirical commentary disguised in sophomoric bathroom humor. You don't have to like it or even approve of it. You also don't have to watch it.
We not only have Freedom of Expression in this country, we have the freedom to ignore others' expressions.
We have Freedom to Worship. Which means any bozo can give his allegiance and life savings to a dumb cult like Scientology. And we can ignore them too. (If they'd only let us!)
Here's who and what we can't ignore.
Our president using born again fundamentalist Christian doctrine to justify taking us to war, overstepping his authority and maintaining a total lack of accountability other than to God.
Our Congress endangering civil and human rights based on religious ideologies, including literal, fundamentalist interpretations of the bible. The US Constitution--not the bible--is the foundation of our democracy.
Our Supreme Court deciding presidential elections on political and religious ideologies and worse, determining what women can and can't do with our own bodies based on personal religious beliefs. The most awesome responsibility in our country resides in this body, which was formed to interpret the Constitution, not the bible.
Yesterday was the third anniversary (what an inappropriate word for this travesty) of the War in Iraq. That--not the war between South Park and Scientology--should be our focus. And the real subject of impassioned commentary, serious debate and declarations of conscience by all of us.