The Crystal Meth Of The Masses, Perhaps?

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Memo to Paul Broun, Rick Santorum, and Newt Gingrich: YOU ARE DUMB.

It's been said that religion is the opiate of the masses. I don't know if that's true. I mean, I've seen opium dens in movies, and the people in them just seem to lie around, not doing shit. Whereas religion tends to inspire people to action. Words and deeds. Mostly words. Mostly stupid words. Spoken by idiots. Who, as we all know, SAY THE DAMNDEST THINGS.

"This doesn’t have anything to do with Christianity." - Georgia congressman Paul Broun.

See? It's all just a big misunderstanding. Apparently people think it has something to do with Christianity, but clearly it doesn't, because Paul Broun says so, and he should know, because the whole thing was his idea. I don't even know why people would think it would have something to do with Christianity in the first place.

Oh, right! Context! Paul Broun has introduced a simple, innocuous measure that has nothing to do with Christianity. It would just have the federal government declare 2010 "The Year Of The Bible". See? Completely Christianity-free, except for that part where the government honors Christianity's holy book formally, in addition to the informal way it honors it constantly. Because that's what we need. Well, Rep. Broun, I've got news for you. 2010 can't be the year of the Bible, because 2010 is already the year we make contact. Sanity is ours. Attempt no landings there.

"Marriage is an institution that’s a bridge too far for too many African-American woman and is not desirable among African-American males. Here we have a president of the United States who says that marriage is cool. You have respect for your wife, and you treat her with the respect and dignity that she deserves. And she is part of this team. And it’s not just part of professional team, but it’s also part of a personal, romantic team. I think that’s all great. So I think it’s important that he keeps having his date night. I think he has to realize that flying to New York is…self-indulgent. Go down to the corner bar and have a drink, a shot and a beer. It does not matter where you go with your wife, is that it’s with your wife." - Rick Santorum, the world's worst marriage counselor.

Shit like this is why I will always hate Rick Man-On-Dog Santorum. Because it's a classic situation where a horrible human being, in this case, Santorum, thinks that he's being a good human being because he's trying to be helpful and gracious and stand up for things everyone thinks are good. But he's not a good human being, he's creepy and wrong and fucked in the head.

I mean, he starts off claiming that black people have special problems with the institution of marriage. Then he praises Obama for being a positive, pro-marriage role model for African-Americans, before taking that sharp faux-populist turn at the end that I find completely incomprehensible. What is Santorum recommending here? That the President take Michelle Obama to a corner bar in Washington for a shot and a beer? Um, Rick? He's the PRESIDENT. If you get to be the president, you get some perks. One of those perks is that you get to take your wife to a Broadway show if you feel like it. Plus, Obama can't even order a damn burger the way he likes it without a week-long controversy, so I can't imagine what Shot-And-Beer-Gate would look like.

Or maybe he's just recommending that African-Americans should use alcohol to strengthen their marriages? I would argue that it DOES matter where you go with your wife, and that just being with your wife isn't enough. For example, if your wife is allergic to flowers, don't take her to the Botanical Gardens. If your wife has a modicum of good sense, don't take her to a Rick Santorum speech. Maybe Rick Santorum's wife likes a shot and a beer. I don't know her, although I suspect anyone married to Rick would want to be drunk a lot of the time. All I know is, if Shaun Of The Dead taught me anything, it's that a relationship can't survive on just going down to the pub once a week.

"I am not a citizen of the world. I am a citizen of the United States because only in the United States does citizenship start with our creator. [...] I think this is one of the most critical moments in American history. We are living in a period where we are surrounded by paganism." - Newt Gingrich, riling up the faithful at Rock Church, where you can apparently smell what God is cookin'.

Surrounded by what again? I've watched Newt Gingrich, and as far as I can tell, the first thing Newt Gingrich is surrounded by is a few extra layers of Newt Gingrich. And the second thing he's surrounded by is a thick fog of self-delusion. But paganism? I don't think so.

You know how I can tell we're not actually surrounded by paganism? Because Newt Gingrich can walk into Rock Church, make the ridiculous statement that citizenship in the US is bestowed upon us by God, and walk out the door, safe and secure in the knowledge that a bunch of robed druids aren't going to kick his ass for being so fucking stupid. I mean, don't get me wrong. I would pay good money for a DVD if that happened and someone caught it on tape. But it's not going to happen, because not even under Newt Gingrich's presumably loose-as-fuck definition of "paganism" is that remotely true.

Yet come Sunday, the media's going to be very interested in what Newt Gingrich has to say, and the forces of paganism will once again go unrepresented on Meet The Press. Go figure.