Maybe there is a God after all.
The Rev. Jerry Falwell, the fundamentalist preacher who founded the Moral Majority and brought the language and passions of religious conservatives into the hurly-burly of American politics, died yesterday in Lynchburg, Va. He was 73.
At first I wasn't going to write about this. The adages,"Don't speak ill of the dead" and "If you can't say something nice..." popped into my head. But after thinking about it for a day, I realized that if I go to hell (if there is such a place), it's not going to be for trashing Falwell. I've said much worse as my friends will attest, so here it goes.
Let me start by quoting a news release of the Westboro Baptist Church of Topeka, Kansas:
"There is little doubt that Falwell split Hell wide open the instant he died." Oh by the way, the website of this Baptist church, a beacon of light no doubt, is www.godhatesfags.com .
So it isn't just me. Even the freaks hated Falwell. But let's not mistake Westboro Baptist Church hating Falwell because he was an honorable man, which is what you'd think by reading Westboro's full release. You'd think that he was a proponent of inclusion by Westboro's standards. On the contrary.
Not only was Falwell a homophobe, but he was a racist, a misogyist, an anti-Semite. So much so, that he blamed 9/11 on everyone he could think of. Everyone, that is, except the actual perpetrators and enablers. "I really believe that the pagans, and the abortionists, and the feminists, and the gays and the lesbians ... the A.C.L.U., People for the American Way, all of them who have tried to secularize America, I point the finger in their face and say, 'You helped this happen.'"
Falwell’s creation of the Moral Majority, the Christian “family values” based lobbying group has, in my opinion, set the political structure of the country back immeasurably. But that's a for another time and another post.
Yes, Jerry Falwell is dead. And the air is a little fresher, the grass is a little greener and the sky seems bluer. Can you feel it? Close your eyes. Can you smell it? I know you can if you concentrate.... There it is. Ahhhh....