After the well-publicized Republican debate that Rick Perry and Sarah Palin famously chickened out of was complete, opinions on how well presidential hopefuls had done began to flow as wildly as the Iowa River in springtime. There are always a few comments that people latch on to, like Santorum dissing Iran for having a lousy gay rights record when he hates gays as openly as any old-school Imam or Huntsman seeming to forget that he was involved in high-level talks with China whilst working as Ambassador; however, there are also pundits weighing in on the appropriateness of questions posed to the panelists.
The question that seems to have garnered the most media steam was asked by Byron York to the only female on stage, that being Michele Bachmann. In reference to the following speech, Mr. York asked Mrs. Bachmann if, as Commander in Chief, she would be under the power of her husband.
Mrs. Bachmann naturally tried to skirt the question by claiming that her and Marcus have a mutual respect relationship instead of an "I do not permit a woman to speak" one, as instructed in the Bible. She certainly didn't definitively answer who exactly would be running the show should America become suddenly insane and vote her in as Prez.
Naturally, news organizations have called the question sexist or otherwise inappropriate, but I don't find it either. You see, people have the right to know if their country could be run not by the woman they voted for, but a badly closeted guy who believes in the spiritual and psychological terrorism of gay people. For the citizens of the land, it is imperative that who decides to bomb Iran and institute Biblical law is the zealot of their choosing. As such, not only is the query appropriate, but necessary. If someone would hand over the wellbeing of over 300 million people to another solely because of a book written by bronze-age miscreants, not only do Republicans deserve to know, but the rest of the world should.
Now, I don't believe that Mrs. Bachmann should have been singled out for the submission question, even though we know that Newt keeps his wives and mistresses suitably subjugated. All of them should have been asked if they believe that women are second-class humans because of the tale of a rib-lady and a talking snake. In this vein, I've compiled a list of 13 questions that I would pose to this gaggle of Bible-beaters during the next Republican schmoozefest. I have more in my mind, but 13 seems like a fantastic number when dealing with matters of the superstitious kind.
1. If a bull gores someone, do you believe that both the ox and his owner shall be stoned to death as commanded in Exodus 21:28-29?
2. If someone works on the Sabbath, shall he or she be put to death in accordance with several sections of the Bible, including Exodus 31:13-17?
3. Do you kill a lamb or goat every time you touch an insect, making sure to sprinkle the blood all over the place and burning the fat, head, and innards in a bizarre spectacle?
4. As President, will you require that both parties in adultery be executed?
5. Would you execute Pat Robertson, Harold Camping, and other dreamers and Prophets if their predictions are wrong in accordance with God's laws?
6. Will you keep your daughter's bloody sheets to prove her virginity lest her husband decide he hates her and should lie that she was a whore? Remember, if you don't save the relic, your daughter shall be stoned to death at your doorstep.
7. Would you bar the blind, the deaf, or dwarves from entering houses of worship as they "profane the sanctuaries" of God? And would you reward those who kill the blind, just like David did?
8. Should we fear mass executions because your God commands you to murder all of those who do not "seek out the God of Israel"?
9. Would you and your buddies stone a disobedient son to death? Remember, this is not only commanded by God, but Jesus, who came to enforce the commandments, not alter them.
10. As President, would you demand a return to slavery with penalties for disobedient slaves as prescribed by God, Jesus, Peter, and Paul dozens of times? Do you currently own slaves? If not, why not?
11. Would you force schools to teach that the world is flat, as it is said to be so 18 times in the Bible? Would our kids also be taught that Earth is fixed, with the Sun revolving around it as mentioned 13 times? Will geography be banned from classrooms, as it involves Earth's measurement, which is strictly prohibited in Jeremiah 31:37?
12. Do you believe in dragons, unicorns, or talking donkeys? If not, you haven't read Numbers, 2 Peter, or Job.
13. Do you have a Christmas tree? If so, you haven't read Jeremiah 10:2-8, which states" Thus saith the Lord, Learn not the way of the heathen, and be not dismayed at the signs of heaven; for the heathen are dismayed at them. For the customs of the people are vain: for one cutteth a tree out of the forest, the work of the hands of the workman, with the axe. They deck it with silver and with gold; they fasten it with nails and with hammers, that it move not.... They are altogether brutish and foolish."
These questions are not intended to ridicule believers, but to point out the fact that absolutely none of the self-righteous Christians who want to score the Republican nomination adhere to their faith by the letter. And this is probably a good thing, since these are people that, save for Ron Paul, do not believe in any separation of church and state. Asking Michele Bachmann, a self-described Evangelical whether or not she's submissive is an absolutely fair question because she brings her private beliefs into the public spectre so often; in that vein, it would be completely acceptable to ask any other Republican hopeful any of the above.
I thoroughly encourage you to think about exactly what your politicians bring to the table. Do they have sound ideas about how to better the lives of others or demand that hundreds of millions of very different people have their rights restricted or removed because of their belief in the superiority of words written by some of the most proudly brutal men in human history? Political ideals and religious practice are and must remain sovereign in order for nations to become and remain free. Perhaps, Republicans would understand the necessary segregation between church and state if they actually researched the woman whose words mean so much to them. Ayn Rand was the selfish, free-market heroine, but she was also pro-choice and very staunchly atheist. She also was an immigrant.
What I have done here is what folks like Michele Bachmann and Rick Santorum don't want you to do, and that's think. One question generally follows another- not only in a political debate, but in life itself. It's when we stop asking questions and making decisions based on fact and instead settle for appeals to judgmentalism force-fed by those who care naught about us that we become partners in the loss of liberty.