The video of Kim Jong-un’s theatrical ‘assassination’ from ‘The Interview” has been leaked, to the surprise of no-one at all (but much to our delight). The whole world is going to watch it now.
…or as Lance Luther likes to call it, ‘7 Points to Bring up on Every Possible Occasion to Beat those Heathens into Submission.’
Professor Sqauwkens adds, “if you say this shit to us, we’ll take a flame-thrower to your ass.” Great pithy post by Herb Silverman.
Update: Herb Silverman has written a follow-up post to his original article called “7 Ways to Talk to Your Family Atheist”. Apparently, “burn them” is not an option. You can read it at:
We here at C.A.A.C.A. would like to step outside our satiric format to express our utmost condolences to the families of the 145 people-132 of them schoolchildren, murdered in Pakistan on Tuesday, Dec 16. Words can never express the sorrow that we share with the families and survivors.
One of the many things this blog seeks to satirize is the way that certain people use words. Words have meaning, and when we stray from that meaning or engage in twisting those words to mean what we want at the moment, in our attempts to argue, to understand, or to seek solutions, we all-too-often go astray. What happened at the Army Public School and Degree College was not a tragedy. A tragedy is when tidal waves kills thousands, when an earthquake ravages cities, when impersonal forces take human lives. When human beings kill other human beings, it is not a tragedy; it is a crime.
If we allow ourselves to look at the loss of life at the hands of the Taliban in Peshawar as a senseless tragedy, we have already begun to dehumanize the victims. We have also already begun the process of failing to understand why such a crime could take place. The Taliban did what it did for political and human reasons, yes. They have a desire for power and resources and a thirst for revenge. But you also have to ask: why does this group believe that it deserves to become the ruling power; that their views are correct and good and the current rulers are wrong–so wrong, in fact, that violence against anyone and everyone is justified in seeking to take over–in Pakistan or anywhere else for that matter?
I have always found it helpful, when trying to figure out something, to keep asking “why?” until one can no longer ask it and come up with an answer; a kind of “walking the dog back” if you will, to borrow a bit of espionage/interrogation terminology. When you do so with conflicts that have a religious element, depressingly often the last “why?” question has the answer, “because of the person/group’s religion”. The politics and power and wealth usually occur in the middle, not the end, of the questioning.
In the case of the Taliban, the last “why?” answer is of course, because they feel that they have a superior religion than the current ruling powers, and that this mandates them to seize power and resources so that it can impose that superior religion on others. It isn’t the current leader’s politics the Taliban is against, except where it conflicts with their version of Islam. They seek influence and resources, but as a means to an end; spreading the ‘correct’ faith. Should some of them get power and wealth and other human desires all the better, but that’s the underlying goal of just about everything humans do. That’s not enough to excuse the influence of religion on their actions, and it’s just an attempt to pass the buck and conflate underlying motives with the true driving force of a conflict.
Far too often, apologists hand-wave away the role of religion in our conflicts and wars as “just an excuse” or an “unimportant element” that people with no knowledge of ‘nuance’ or ‘complexity’ use to justify their distrust or dislike of religion. The truth is that while there are of course multiple factors that make up any large-scale conflict, religion is an indispensable element in those conflicts and often the most important one. It is far past time we began to treat it as such instead of using weasel-words and cop-outs to make excuses for violent religious leaders and the followers that enable them. Without an honest assessment of the role that religion plays in conflicts, wars, massacres and oppression; both historically and in the world today, the longer we remain in the dark when trying to find a way to reduce the tensions that make today’s world such a powder keg of tension and violence.
The Taliban and groups like Boko Haram (who kidnapped 200 schoolgirls in Nigeria recently and are the likely suspects in the kidnapping of 100 more this past Sunday) makes it its business to go after schools and schoolchildren for a reason. It knows that the children in those facilities will grow to be their downfall if left unchecked. It is because they will have something that the fundamentalists fear the most–a well-rounded secular education.
I don’t pretend to have all the answers, and I don’t advocate trying to “stamp out” religion (I take the ridicule it/talk openly about it approach, if this blog is any indication), but the world must stand up and protect these educational institutions, in Pakistan and elsewhere. It must also come together to protect the rights of children, women and dissident thinkers and Freethought advocates, and they need to do it even when doing so overrides religious protests or sensibilities. If military muscle must be used, use it to properly guard these institutions. In any case, we desperately need to begin thinking more in non-military terms, and supporting the work of people like Malala Yousafzai, the world’s youngest recipient of the Nobel Peace Prize (and the survivor of a vicious Taliban attack) and her co-reciepient, Kailash Satyarthi who actively campaigns for the rights of children world-wide, instead of handing guns to wackos in the vain hopes that they kill the wackos that we don’t like.
A list of the victim’s of the massacre in Pakistan is still being compiled. If it is released online, I will post it here. In the meantime, here is a link to a Huff-Post article about the list and the portraits of 21 of those who died, from a Pennsylvania Herald-Standard article, which I have also provided a link for. Their faces deserve to be seen.
UPDATE: I have still been unable to locate an official list of those killed in the massacre (if someone knows of it, please pass a link along), but the death toll has risen–how high is hard to judge, because papers are reporting different numbers ranging from 146 to as high as 162 people.
If there was ever any doubt that the Taliban in Pakistan was deliberately targeting the children, that doubt was laid to rest when security officials discovered a ‘hitlist’—a prepared list of the sons of army officers telling the terrorists who to concentrate on.
In an e-mailed statement, the Tehrik-e-Taleban Pakistan (TTP) said, “More than 50 sons of important army officers were killed after being identified. The auditorium where students in secondary and higher secondary sections were being taught first aid was targeted.”
Sadly, the massacre is already having the same kind of effect in Pakistan that 9/11 had upon America. Officials used the massacre as an excuse to lift a moratorium on the death penalty (in the case of terrorists) and further abrupt shifts to the Right (a common reactionary trend when crimes of this magnitude are carried out by enemies of the State) and military escalations are the order of the day. While I’m all for bringing the perpetrators and their group to justice, I dared to hope that more progressive solutions would at least be sought out, but Pakistan appears to be out for revenge and blood; the same motivation that brought the Taliban to the Army Public School and Degree College in the first place.
The latest Listverse article by this Blog’s lord and creator, on a subject not wholly unrelated to religion.
Is torture justified if a nation is threatened? Meh. What about if a town is threatened? Do you mean Mayberry? A neighborhood? Hell, take my neighborhood-please.
What about sweet little 13 year old white, Christian Becky Appleton of 455 West Avenue, Rhode Island who loves playing with dolls, worshiping Jesus and longing for world peace?
Quick! A nasty ole terrorist group has TWO HUNDRED nuclear bombs, biological weapons, an army of pedophiles, fifteen bad boys with frogs and snakes in their hands, and twenty trained attack dogs aimed straight at the poor dear (who is cruelly tied to a chair under harsh spotlights and not even allowed a dolly or a crucifix to hold! She has to stare straight at the tips of all those missiles. The boys keep dangling snakes in front of her and putting frogs in her pocket. The pedophiles are straining against their straitjackets. She can see the vile slather drip from the vicious fangs of the dogs!) We just brought in a suspect who may know where the precious little angel is, but he’s not talking. The timer is ticking! OMG, there’s only FIFTEEN seconds to go!!! Oh! The humanity!!!
Will you use “enhanced methods” against the barbaric, terrorist, ungodly, brown-skinned bastard of a suspect that was brought in THEN!!? Would you leave poor Becky to her fate, alone in that dank, smoldering room full of mildew, pornography and anti-American posters with the tears rolling slowly down her eyes, leaving tracks in the dirt that the evil men have allowed to accumulate on her face!!? Could you possibly be more callous!!?
What do you think about the Torturer’s Dilemma NOW!!? Here’s a free book-length dissertation on the subject for you.
Remember folks, when Dick Cheney fails to negotiate a private contract, the Terrorists win!
All of my life, especially working in Calcutta, I have known two things; that God exists, and that huge amounts of money from third-world dictatorships stored in off-shore bank accounts when it’s supposed to be for the poor fund a whole BUNCHA religious causes. There is no ‘maybe’ about these fundamental truths.
Without Truth; truth with a capital T, what would we do? Tolerate clear falsehoods? Chart middle grounds? Buy a few damn cots and a sterile needle or two? I don’t think so! Agnostics would have you believe that just maybe, all the facts are not known, or that both sides of a position may hold part of a greater truth, but that’s obvious hogwash and dangerous thinking to boot. Where would we be without yes or no answers? Spinning our gears I tell you! Or even worse, forced to read more than one book!
“Without Truth; truth with a capital T, what could we do? Tolerate clear falsehoods? Chart middle grounds? Buy a few damn cots and a sterile needle or two?“
I was once plagued by doubt. I even said that, “the silence and the emptiness is so great that I look and do not see, listen and do not hear.” Perhaps I couldn’t hear because Christopher Hitchens wouldn’t shut his gob for one minute, but whatever the case may be, my good friend Charles Keating gave me 125 million reasons to carry on. And while keeping utterly silent about the matter worked for me when I was asked to give those millions of reasons back, there is one thing in the world we can’t afford to be quiet about: those that would undermine everything we have exploited, beaten, defrauded, fought and killed for by taking away our God-given right to be right, all the time, every time, all the while saying that it wasn’t the things we believed in that justified our motivations, just the STUFF we could get for spreading them! So I did what everyone would do.
I gave a bunch of money to yet another group that would TELL me what the truth was. And I haven’t looked back. You should too.
1: Are you reminded of fingernails across a chalkboard when someone says, “Maybe we should wait until all the facts are in”?
2: Do you think that a fence is for standing on one side or the other of?
3: Do you find it blindingly obvious that their either IS a God, or there isn’t? And just MAYBE, this question has something or other to do with religion?
4: Have you ever felt an overwhelming desire to pick up a pitchfork for something other than farming purposes?
5: Do you ever feel like sneaking up behind a metaphysical solipsist and flipping a coin to see whether you should hit him on the head (Heads means you do!) with a baseball bat, in order to see if you can create some kind of reality paradox and destroy the universe?
6: Does the sight of waffles remind you of agnostics?
7: Do you find yourself JEALOUS of Islamic extremists?
8: Do you tithe 10% of your income or more to a church?
9: Does the image below remind you of a typical debate?
Than C.A.A.C.A. is PERFECT for you! Get your wallets…ah, minds ready, and gird your loins for battle!
It’s true. A great Darkness is coming…The hellish whisper of, “Meh?” can be heard across the land…
While too many Christians and Atheists argue among themselves about the trivial question of God’s existence (what does THAT have to do with religion?), a slowly creeping menace has been growing throughout our beloved world that threatens all of our existences.
Fortunately, two brave visionary leaders have come together to combine their organizations and combat this threat before it is too late. That’s right, we are talking about the horror of the ever-spreading blight of uncertainty!
Make no mistake. They may seem sorta clueless. Reasonable even. but agnostics are out to undermine our greatest freedom: The right to scream bloody murder over pointless doctrines, muddled semantics and strident militant talking-a-lot. Make no mistake: They are infiltrating our ranks even now.
Now, Lance Luther, of the Christian Response Alert for Silly Stories in Schools (C.R.A.S.S.S.) along with Richard Sqauwkens, President of atheists for More Obnoxious Blogs (M.O.B.), have put aside their flame wars on atheist and Christian online forums to lead both parties against a peril that threatens not only our vulnerable nation, but the very world itself!
But willing as we are to take on those who would threaten our very lives with their shrill cries of “well gee, I don’t really know for certain”, we can’t do it alone. We need your help to keep the world safe for absolutism.
Start by becoming a follower! You know you want to follow! In return, you’ll receive regular dispatches from the organization that PROMISES that, “we will argue to our last breath” until the vile agnostics speak no more. This is just the opening salvo folks. We WILL win the war!
Are you a patriot? Do you love/hate your country and would do anything for/against it? Then you owe it to yourself to immediately follow our blog, give over tons of cash, and take a stand-any stand!
Remember folks, relativism is usually a bad idea!