Needless to say, it made me furious. Frustrated with the rampant racism of America and demonization of "the other," I decided to pen a response, in the style of the original, that speaks to fears of a nation and encourages learning from history. Whom should we really fear and how should that influence our vote come November 4th?
To read the original email, click here.
Here's my reply:
READ THIS PEOPLE, DON'T BE BLIND.
I knew there was something I didn't like now I know what it is. If you plan on voting, read this first.
This is not a matter of opinion. Opinions are subjective. These are facts.
My personal opinion? I agree with facts because they're factual.
If after reading this email you disagree, please, feel free to reply back to me. Your opinion is yours and that's fine, but you should be able to justify it, don't you think?
A lot of Americans have become so insulated from reality that they imagine that America can inflict horrific damage upon the rest of the world without any facing any consequences.
Moreover, there seems to be a whole lot of fear-mongering going around these days, exploiting the xenophobia, racism, mistrust and misunderstanding of "the other," and the cultural and ethnosupremacy of many white Americans, who are the descendants of European Christians.
So, please, pause a moment, reflect back.
These events are actual events from history.
They really happened!!!
Do you remember?
1. 1095-1291: The Crusades, a series of religiously-motivated military campaigns with the intent of brutally conquering and claiming the Holy Land and fought primarily against Muslims, were waged by white Christian men. Death toll: 3-5 million human beings.
2. 1478-1834: The Spanish Inquisition, a bloody effort to create a politically and religiously homogeneous kingdom wrested from the hands of Muslims and Jews through forced conversion, censorship, repression, and torture, was sanctioned and carried out by white Christian men. Death toll: 32,000 human beings.
3. Over the course of four hundred years, beginning in the fifteenth century, witch hunts led by white Christian men were responsible for the deaths of about 60,000 human beings.
4. 1562-1598: For thirty-six years, religious battles were waged in France among different factions of white Christian men. Death toll: 2-4 million human beings.
5. 1618-1648: The Thirty Years War, also fought among conflicting factions of white Christian men, cost the lives of about 7 million human beings.
6. 1803-1815: The Napoleonic Wars, immediately following the French Revolutionary Wars, had a death toll of upwards of 6 million human beings and were waged by white Christian men.
7. 1415-1914: Over the course of five centuries, white Christian men consistently, compulsively, and competitively conquered and colonized the majority of five continents, in an effort to expand economy, exploit resources, subjugate native populations, and exert unabashed hegemony, imperialism, and chauvinism upon the non-European world.
8. The conquest of the New World by European explorers, beginning in earnest in 1492, led to the systematic and deliberate genocide of over 100 million human beings, an unspeakable act of ethnic-cleansing in the name of Manifest Destiny and perpetrated by white Christian men.
9. 1500-1880: The African Slave Trade in the Americas was responsible for forcibly removing over 24 million human beings from their homes. Fewer than 50% survived the trip to the New World and spent the rest of their lives in brutal bondage. This abhorrent crime against humanity was funded, executed, promoted, and fought for by white Christian men.
10. Over the course of 150 years, beginning in 1770, the indigenous population of Australia (who had lived sustainably on their own land for over 40,000 years) was all but wiped out, due to colonization, violent re-settlement, disease, and cultural disintegration inflicted by white Christian men.
11. Even after the abolition of slavery in the United States, Jim Crow Laws that limited or denied the civil rights and liberties of minority groups were in place for almost a century, until 1965. This legalized racism, segregation, and the paradoxical bigotry of the "separate but equal" doctrine were conceived and enforced by white Christian men.
12. 1899-1902: U.S. Marines slaughtered over a million Filipino civilians, as a result of the American occupation of the Philippines after the Spanish-American War, one of the first imperial exercises of the United States government, which was controlled (as always) by white Christian men.
13. 1938-1945: Well over 30 million civilians were killed by the Nazis and Fascists during World War II, an estimated 12 million of those in concentration camps. Who's to blame for this genocide? Yup, white Christian men.
14. February 13-15, 1945: In an unjustified and unnecessary series of air raids, the U.S. and British Air Forces dropped about 4,000 tons of bombs on the city of Dresden, destroying about 13 square miles and at least 30,000 human beings. Who gave the orders? White Christian men.
15. August 6 & 9, 1945: After six months of devastating firebombing of almost 70 other cities, atomic bombs were dropped on Hiroshima and Nagasaki, causing the deaths of over 220,000 human beings. These criminal acts of civilian murder, and the only attacks using nuclear weaponry in the history of the world, were carried out by an executive order by a white Christian man.
16. For over 40 years, beginning in 1948, the Apartheid system in South Africa legally dictated the domination of one race over all others via institutionalized discrimination and segregation that affected citizenship, identity, freedom of movement, living locations and conditions, marriage, education, employment, and health care. As in the U.S., people of different races were prohibited from using the same restaurants, restrooms, and swimming pools. This violation of human rights, with its wholesale contempt and rejection of equality, freedom, and justice, was enacted, supported, and administered by white Christian men.
17. Between 1950 and 1975, militaries led by white Christian men caused the deaths of over 7 million civilians in Korea, Vietnam, Laos, and Cambodia. Over 2.5 million tons of bombs were dropped on Laos and Cambodia alone, more than double the amount dropped on Nazi Germany and about 14 times the number dropped on Japan during WWII.
18. Since 1893, the sovereign governments of Hawaii, Cuba, Costa Rica, Puerto Rico, Nicaragua, Honduras, Brazil, Greece, Iran, Guatemala, Afghanistan, Iraq, Chile, Grenada, and Panama, among many others have been overthrown by U.S. government and CIA-supported coup d'etats, incited by white Christian men.
19. Since its creation in 1865, the Ku Klux Klan has advocated white supremacy and violently supported their racist agenda with intimidation, lynching, murder, terrorism, and hate speech. At its peak, the Klan boasted over 4 million members, all of whom were (and still are) white Christian men.
20. The recent illegal and immoral invasions and occupations of Afghanistan and Iraq, including atrocities at Abu Ghraib and Guantanamo Bay, bombings of wedding celebrations, massacres in Haditha and Mahmudiyah, and the Blackwater shootings in Baghdad, committed by and the behest of white Christian men, have cost the lives of well over a million human beings and have displaced over 3 million others.
21. Assassins John Wilkes Booth and Charles Guiteau, serial killers Jack the Ripper, Ted Bundy, John Wayne Gacy, and Jeffrey Dahmer, dictators Augusto Pinochet and Francisco Franco, terrorists Ted Kaczynski and Timothy McVeigh, bigots Billy Graham, James Hagee, Rush Limbaugh, and David Duke, cult leaders Jim Jones and David Koresh, as well as every single U.S. President and Vice President in history have all been white Christian men.
Clearly, there's a pattern here. As a result, I think all Americans should be very wary of electing another leader of such dubious character and affiliation.
The next U.S. President will be the commander-in-chief of the most active and most expensive military on the planet. The U.S. spends over $600 billion dollars a year on its military, more than the rest of the world combined (Our nearest competitor, China, spends one-tenth what we do). The U.S. sells more weapons to other countries than any other nation, has more than 700 military bases in 130 countries around the world and over 6000 bases in the U.S. and U.S.-controlled territories.
Would you want to place this devastating amount of power in the hands of another white Christian man?
Have the American People completely lost their Minds, or just their Power of Reason?
Also, in response to the bogus claims of the "Book of Revelations" prophecy...
The ridiculous statement, as repeated in numerous e-mail forwards attempting to link Barack Obama's popularity to the end of the world, is as follows:
"The Anti-Christ will be a man, in his 40's, of MUSLIM descent, who will deceive the nations with persuasive language, and have a MASSIVE Christ-like appeal....the prophecy says that people will flock to him and he will promise false hope and world peace, and when he is in power, he will destroy everything."Ok, just some simple corrections:
1. There is no "Book of Revelations" in the Bible. It's called the "Book of Revelation." Singular.
2. Nowhere in "Revelation" is the word "Anti-Christ" mentioned.
3. There is also no mention of a man in his 40's (or of any age for that matter).
4. The mention of a "Muslim" is clearly absurd considering Islam (and thus the term Muslim) was a religion founded in the early 7th Century, about five hundred years after the New Testament was written. Nice try, idiots.
5. The subsequent descriptions of the so-called Anti-Christ are found nowhere in the Book of Revelation. They are pieced-together ideas from disparate parts of the Bible, taken completely out of context, and filtered heavily through End Times theology and Rapture mythology.
Basically, the whole thing is made up. Kudos, racists.
It would behoove all those flag-waving church-over-state patriots to remember the words of our founding father Thomas Jefferson, from his Notes on Virginia:
"Millions of innocent men, women, and children, since the introduction of Christianity, have been burned, tortured, fined, and imprisoned, yet we have not advanced one inch toward uniformity. What has been the effect of coercion? To make one half of the world fools and the other half hypocrites."Too wordy? Maybe this other Jefferson quote sums it up better:
"Christianity is the most perverted system that ever shone on man."And what about this gem from Thomas Paine's The Age of Reason:
"Of all systems of religion that ever were invented, there is no more derogatory to the Almighty, more unedifying to man, more repugnant to reason, and more contradictory to itself than this thing called Christianity."
There you have it. Amen.
So, hey, if you've gotta vote on November 4th, it's safer to vote against the white guy. Those fuckers are dangerous.