Christians Behaving Badly, Or: There’s One in Every Family

Every family has one, that crazy relative that’s chock-full of badly-formed opinions and wants to get in your face about them. Maybe it’s your slightly senile grandmother. Maybe it’s that off-the-grid uncle no one likes to talk about. Hell, maybe it’s you. In my side of my family, it was my mother, and her sister. Clearly, there was a loony gene there, which, hooray for me, was passed down to me. My mother was prone to fits of violent outbursts and emotional abuse. My aunt was irrationally impulsive, at times bordering on the comically homicidal. I say comically because not a day went by where she didn’t threaten to either kill someone or herself. She’s done neither so far, but that doesn’t mean she still isn’t capable.

On my wife’s side, there’s her aunt. Let’s call her S. Crazy Aunt S. I’m not saying this lightly: she’s a psychiatrist’s wet dream, the very reason why the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders even exists.

Add to her mental instability is her religious fervor. She’s a born-again Christian. You know the type, the one who wants to tell everyone within earshot how much she’s been filled with God’s love, all the while conveniently ignoring the fact that she’s an insufferable asshole with the maturity of an 11-year-old boy who’s just discovered his daddy’s stash of nudie magazines. Oh, and a chronic liar, to boot.

Yes, liar. I’ll get to that in a bit.

For someone who talks a lot about loving everyone, her hatred for gays rears it’s ugly head frequently. Case in point: at a monthly dinner with her high school graduation class, one of her former classmates spoke to the group about his decision to come out of the closet many years ago. It was a difficult decision for him to make, being he came from a family of Southern Baptists, but a decision his family came to accept.

S wasn’t having any of this gay shit. She stopped at nothing to humiliate him in front of the entire group. “God won’t accept faggots into Heaven. You better repent or you’ll go to Hell when you die.” When S was told to keep her opinions to herself, she declared, “I am a good Christian and I am straight and I am going to Heaven!” And if her point wasn’t made enough, she continue to spew her venomous rhetoric on the HS reunion group’s Facebook page. She’s since been booted, but S declared its because she’s taken a principled stand against liberal permissiveness.

It’s one thing to spew hateful rhetoric towards others based upon their race, gender, religious or sexual preference. It’s another to hide behind the laughable yet offensive hypocrisy of “being a good Christian” to justify your rancor. Because S is anything but a good Christian. A Christian Behaving Badly, really.

Let’s use the holiest of Judeo-Christian principles, the Ten Commandments, to determine how good a Christian S is:

THOU SHALT NOT STEAL: Over the years, S has made it her personal mission to defraud as many government agencies as possible. Social Security, Medicaid, the Department of Social Services, Food Stamps. She claims poverty when she has assets, liquid assets at her disposal.

THOU SHALT NOT COVET: Being that this is the commandment that everyone’s guilty of not paying heed to – George Carlin’s legendary riff on the Ten Commandments basically called this commandment “bullshit,” as coveting fuels the economy – I won’t give S too much shit, but she’s a greedy fucker. Any way she can get get get without giving anything in return is a win-win for her.

THOU SHALT NOT COMMIT ADULTERY: She cheated on her husband. She cheated on the man she lived with (in sin!)…with his brother, no less.

THOU SHALL HONOR THY MOTHER AND THY FATHER: Let’s see…S robbed her parents of money and medication, used their social security numbers to open department store credit (which she never bothered to pay), and as they grow older and sicker, mishandled or outright denied them of basic medical needs.

A good Christian? No. A fucking hypocrite, plain and simple. She’s quick to judge a gay man living comfortably under his own skin, which begs the question: why, as a so-called “good Christian,” are you so fucking worked up over homosexuality in the first place? After all, if there is a God, isn’t it God’s work to judge who’s going to Heaven and who’s burning in Hell? If so, then let God judge.

If you ask anyone, they’ll tell you I’m the least judgmental person they’ll know. I simply do not and will not judge others. But I will call people out on their bullshit. Especially bullshit wrapped up in “good Christian” hypocrisy. And S is all full of “good Christian” hypocrisy.

Doesn’t read to me like the makings of a good Christian, does it? But in her mind, she is one, because a) she attends church every Sunday, so she’s good with God on the attendance thing, b) she hates faggots, like all good Christians do, and c) she votes Republican. The last point is an irony completely lost on her, as she’s exactly the kind of votes the GOP pays lip service to yet actively despises. If a complete Republican-run executive and legislative branch of our Federal government had its way, all those social programs Crazy Aunt S uses like her government-sponsored ATM would go the way of the dodo. A good thing, maybe, because then that might force her to, you know, stop being such a lazy cunt. Then again, it’s her fraud that’s the reason why Medicaid and SSI and Food Stamps are always on the GOP’s crosshairs, and someday when these programs do run out, the people that do actually depend on these social safety nets, honest, hard-working folks who want nothing more than to not have to depend on a government handout, can thank S for ripping them off like this. Let me know if you want her address and phone number.

I get that S isn’t indicative of any kind of behavior set of Christians everywhere, but having lived in the South (the Bible Belt of America) for nearly 15 years now, I’ve noticed two things: one, people here sure love God and Jesus, and, two, there’s a lot of people that say and do things that go against of a Christian life that Jesus preached in his lifetime. And one of those things is to not be judgmental.

Funny enough, some Christians want to be judgmental because they themselves want to be judged. It’s as if they can’t wait for their day of judgment, so they begin to judge one another, so as if to keep tabs as to who’s going to walk in the Kingdom of Heaven for all eternity.

Well fuck me! Because if the Kingdom of Heaven is filled with the likes of S, and Hell is populated with gays and lesbians and every other sinner, I’ll roast in damnation with the sinners. At least the music will be awesome.

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13 thoughts on “Christians Behaving Badly, Or: There’s One in Every Family

  1. I’ll join you guys in that handbasket to hell.

    S sounds like most of my family. Sunday morning Christians, paying their way into heaven one offering envelope at a time.

    Ps–dontcha know that Medicaid and welfare are only bad until THEY need it?

    (yeah, this is just part of why I don’t really talk with them anymore)

  2. Well…how dang long has it been since I’ve been over here? Nice face lift. This one brought me out of hiding. Yeah, hiding. Just haven’t been “in the mood” and have been trying to shake it. MOODY. But this is a subject that’s had me pretty riled lately—heck, for years.

    One fucking word for them all: Pharisees. Aunt S (is that short for Sin-thia?) is a fucking Pharisee. Well, actually, she’s not even a Pharisee, as they are High Priests who’ve been hand-picked by God like Juan Valdez’s coffee beans, suckled by the Virgin Mary with immaculate, homogenized, pasteurized, and exorcised Liebfraumilch, and educated in the Great Halls of GOP Hypocrisy. The Pharisees are the ones your aunt follows, not Christ, and if you recall, they had the biggest hand in the crucifixion. She’s a Pharisee wannabe roadie. She carries around a Bible, but doesn’t open it, instead relying on the lessons she learned while sitting pantie-less “on her pastor’s knee,” who learned it from HIS pastor (he sat pantie-less, too), who learned it from HIS pastor, and so on, and so on, and so on, like a fucking Fabergé Organics commercial. They love their Bibles—to slap people around with. Other than that, it’s all Greek to them. Or Coptic. Or Aramaic. Or Whatever. So long as it’s KJV, otherwise it doesn’t count and isn’t the “real” Word.

    I’ve actually been, when my moodiness allows, working on a similar article for submission to Press. After watching Son of God at the movies and seeing how far off-track Christians have veered (I’d noticed years before, but the movie served as a catalyst), I was disgusted to call myself a Christian. Hang me upside-down on a cross like Peter for saying that, but I was. I’m forever checking myself at the door…weighing and measuring myself…finding (and doing my best to correct) areas that are lacking. It’s a daily—hell, sometimes hourly—job. Even as I write this, I try to stay out of judgement of your aunt, and I am…I’m not judging her…just questioning her definition of a Christian. I always thought it was to “love one another, as I have loved you, may you love one another. By this, shall all men know you are my disciples, if you have love, one to another.” That’s somewhere in that big ol’ Book. Written in RED. You know, Jesus’s words.

    But oppression IS love, isn’t it? Oppression of groups whose color or sex or lifestyles or different beliefs is, in their eyes, a warped Cliven Bundy Crazy Ol’ Thing Called Love. “There goes my ba-ay-bee.” In this case, it’s the baby they wouldn’t let you abort, but now won’t give assistance to because you shouldn’t have been wearing what you were wearing to get raped in the first place. Deal with it, slut. These hotbeds of Christian dissension allow the Pharisees (okay, may as well say it, GOP and Religious Right) to stoke the fires of damnation toward minority groups supposedly all in “the name of love.” They instill fear and rely on ignorance, knowing damn well their followers haven’t cracked the gold-tipped edges of their rice-paper leaves. Come, sit on my lap for your lesson, my child. No, you don’t need that book, I’ll tell you everything you need to know.

    Be glad you’re not on Facebook. That’s all you see: Christians…oops, Pharisees…crying out injustice about how THEY are now the minority. Case in point: I don’t follow football. At. All. I can’t even throw a football ball. Yet I know the name Tim Tebow. How? Through all the hype made over his kneeling and making the sign of the cross when he scored. He’s a “good Christian role model.” And maybe he is. I dunno. But the point I’m trying to make is how he was plastered all over anything and everything, not necessarily because of his athletic abilities, but because of his Christian beliefs. That’s how I know Tim Tebow.

    Fast-forward a couple of years to Michael Sam’s coming out. It sent the Babylonian Bigots babbling like Nimrods. And one of MY relatives (and I have puh-lenty who think and comment similarly) had the nerve to post a cartoon that made fun of all the attention given to Sam (after all, that’s gotta be short for Samhain, right?). The whole gist of the propagandist strip was to say how “degenerates” are showcased while Christians are forgotten and dismissed. How soon they forget. Father, forgive them, they know not what they do. To them, Christians are now the minority. Rich, white, let’s-run-the-world-and-put-tons-of-money-in-our-pockets-all-the-while-screaming-immorality BIGOTS are now the minority.

    Well, they should be! They should trickle down to extinction. Their beliefs, anyway. And yeah, even some of them…written with the most Christian love and kindness I can muster.

    Rant over.

    • First off, nice to know you came out of your imposed exile just to comment.

      Second, thanks for the compliment on the makeover.

      Third…yours was an even better rant than mine, my friend.

      As a lapsed Catholic and graduate of St. John’s University, one of the largest Catholic universities in the country, I’m pretty well-versed in the teachings of the Old and New Testaments. But taking all that aside, while I don’t consider myself a Christian, I do believe in doing the right thing like Jesus would have wanted us to do: do good unto others, show charity and mercy, judge not. Whether that’s Christian or not, I don’t care. I believe in, like you said, love and kindness. Not bigotry and judgment.

      And when I see a lot of these so-called “Christians” wearing their WHAT WOULD JESUS DO t-shirts, I just want to get in their faces and shout, “Not whatever it is you’re up to, charlatan!”

      • Exactly. You know, Jesus was a Jew but taught a new way (the Gospel…the Good News) and was considered radical and blasphemous by the Pharisees simply for enlightening folks to what—loving one another? And that’s a bad thing?

        Here we are, 2000+ years later, with the higher ups still grasping for control and warping their fears of losing said control with references to scripture. And again, the “meek” are trying to enlighten and are being considered radical and blasphemous. I see a pattern…

        I have a t-shirt that says, “I’m the Christian Satan’s worried about.” Love that shirt. It’s because I’ve danced with the devil and he knows I got some moves. I’m not your everyday run-of-the-mill Christian, believe me.

        Good seeing you again. 🙂

        • And I really do like this theme. Nice, large font, easily readable, I just previewed my blog with it…may have to switch. Looks good. I like how the title disappears when you scroll down.

        • You hit the nail on the head: it’s all about fear and rejecting what it is you fear. The Pharisees rejected Jesus for daring to suggest that we love one another. Christians have often rejected what they feared: non-Christians, women, now gays. Even though Jesus teaches us to love one another. Somehow the lesson got lost somewhere.

  3. As a recovering Catholic, I know everything there is to know about Christian hypocrisy. I worked around plenty of devout evangelical Christians; the type who are quick to judge others, when their own Bible speaks against it. I divorced myself from the Judeo-Christian oligarchy years ago (a sin unto itself) and saw the light of spiritual freedom. Others are still trapped in that darkness; they just need to go to “The Light.”

    • It’s amazing to me (although it shouldn’t be) how people will co-opt the Bible to justify their beliefs. Who cares if the Bible says “Judge not?” Some people simply cannot resist being judgmental, and think that makes them good Christians. How quickly they forget what the Bible really teaches them, if they weren’t so closed-minded.

  4. Good rants–Gus’s and Mike’s. I have noticed in recent years, talking to my Mom (who has remained a Christian, while I have backslid to some kind of agnostic on most days, atheist on alternate Tuesdays), that she has become more and more tolerant and accepting, and less and less convinced that there’s a single right way. It’s just nice to see that a person doesn’t have to get petrified as they age, or even sit comfortably in their beliefs. I figure as long as she keeps thinking about it, she’s good, one way or another (the more so as the thinking seems to lead AWAY from judgement).

    Me? I was probably set on the course to atheism back in college, by what I called even then the “praise the lord” Christians–the ones who “just gave thanks to God” for everything, up to and including making it out of bed in the morning (okay, at my age now, that might be worth giving praise for. But we were KIDS back then! We had endless energy!). Their religion stuck out all over them like a malignant growth.

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