What do they have in common? Both groups are comprised of closed-minded individuals that are intolerant of other people and any ideas or facts that do not coincide with their own. The fact is that like a black hole in space where light can simply not penetrate it, the minds of fundamentalists, be they religious or political, are impenetrable. Nothing can penetrate the deep dark spaces of their fixated minds, particularly truth or facts!
I had the interesting displeasure of discussing the plight of the California economy with a couple of Republican leaning political fundamentalists two nights ago. I listened as both individuals proceeded to blame the current economic woes of California, a 45B state budget deficit exclusively on the Democrats.
I couldn't resist so, I waded in knowing that I would get some kind of stupid reply. I asked, and didn't you leave someone out of your conclusion, the chief Executive of the State, Governor Schwarzenegger? Their reply was, he is married to a Democrat. They were referring to the fact that his wife is a Kennedy.
I pushed a little further and said, well he is the governor isn't he, and are you saying that none of his decisions are responsible for the states current woes? All of us can recall when just a few short years ago, 'the Governator' referred to the members of the California State Legislature as 'girlie men', and from there he proceeded to force his will upon the state of California.
Facts didn't matter to these two; they weren't having any of it. They weren't going to say anything bad about the current Republican Governor, his policies or any of his decisions.
I was in Washington DC when it occurred except when I returned for meetings, but I reminded them that during that time that I kept up with what was going on in my home state. I said, when California experienced its economic woes a decade ago which resulted in a recall of then Governor Gray Davis, that the Democratic Governor was considered to be as much a part of the blame as were the state's legislators. I went on to say that, you didn't excuse him for the state's woes at that time.
Then I asked, so why are you excusing Republican Governor Arnold Schwarzeneggar this time, in other words why is he getting a bye? I'm sorry, I am simply beginning to believe that most Republicans are simply fanatical nuts. And when you consider how many individuals in the Religious Right, America's other fundamentalist group, you can readily see my point. Just as in their religious context, they use the same narrow-minded to define themselves in a political context! In other words, its that old saying again, 'my mind is made up, don't confuse me with facts'. The problem is that they are already confused!
The truth of the matter is that both of these Neanderthals presupposed that I was a Democratic voter and a member of the Democratic party. And, in typical Republican form, neither one was smart enough to consider that there are individuals outside of the Republican Party who can think for themselves. I explained that I am and have been a registered Independent for years. When I explained that I did not vote for Obama, one of the Neanderthals stood there with his mouth open.
I explained that I am against the political trend in American that began with George Bush Jr., that of Americans electing individuals who clearly are not qualified to be President, and I included Sarah Palin as well as President Obama in the equation.
Then it occurred to me what really bothered me about these two. These guys remind me of many of our religious fundamentalists. And, whether eastern or western, Christians, Muslim or otherwise, there are some individuals in the world that no matter what, once they accept something as truth no light can penetrate the dark morass or recesses of their self-centered minds.
Both religious and political fundamentalists need to wake up and see the light of day, it would sure make life a lot easier for the rest of us. One of the great things about being an Independent voter is that you can sit back and assess all Parties and candidates without prejudice. I am not under any pressure from the party members or bosses to go along with their bad choices or policies. I get to choose, without regard, in other words, to party affiliation(s)!
Who is to blame for California's current economic woes, well if you ask the average Republican, they would simply say, it's the Democrats, in the same manner that some Republicans are already beginning to blame President Obama for America's current economic failed state. And what is so sad about it is that he has only been in office for about one month. Bush is off the hook with these guys, well for sure they can never bring themselves to say that, a Republican messed this country up!
I didn't vote for the nascent Senator from Illinois, who is now the President of the USA, but trust me, I am pulling for him. Why? If not for his sake, for that of our kids, our senior parents and for all of us. We are in big trouble economically as a nation!
What can religious and political fundamentalists do that would make this world a better place? Well, they could start by getting a brain and end on this note, use it! In other words refrain from simply taking a position, and standing on that position regardless of the facts. Have you ever seen so many narrowly defined and closed-minded individuals?
Peace & Grace
Rev. C. Solomon
TO be continued...