Once, a low, disgusting man
Who believed he knew God’s plan
And whose prejudice was nothing less than sinister;
Gave his honest Christian views
To the people in the news
He’s the Reverend Bryan Griem—and he’s a minister.
(rest of the ballad–and a bit of a rant–after the jump)
From the high and lofty perch
Of the reverend in his church
Comes the truth inside what passes for his heart
Oh, he loves his fellow man
In the way a preacher can
Ah, but atheists, in mankind, play no part.
With no faith in God above
They’re not worthy of His love
So it’s “atheists be damned”, and so they will!
Bryan doesn’t really care
How an atheist might fare
If they die, at least the worms will eat their fill!
If it’s “what would Jesus do?”
That informs your point of view
Take a good look at the minister, and see—
“Love thy neighbor as thyself”
Keep that book up on the shelf
Come on, Christians, slog the atheists with me!
In the sermon on the mount
Christ said atheists don’t count
Undeserving of our mercy, love, and light
If the godless try to speak
Don’t you turn the other cheek!
Judge them now, cos it’s your holy Christian right!
Lord, it really makes me sick
When some godless heathen prick
Claims he’s fighting for the constitution’s sake
And could lose his life one day
In defense of what I say
Because thanking him is more than I can take
It could happen—it may well,
That he’ll die and go to Hell
For my right to call him evil, weak, and small
He’ll be dead, cold, and alone,
With no cross upon his stone
Cos he never knew that Jesus loves us all
Go here. Read this. When the steam stops coming out of your ears, in a week or two, come back.
One of my all-time favorite students is currently in Afghanistan. He calls me his “atheist friend”. They don’t make people better than this soldier. He is risking his life, in part, to defend our (his and my) right to disagree with one another on The Big Questions. He knows this, and the only payment he will accept is that I won’t ever let him buy a round of drinks. He’s currently in his 5th or 6th tour. I really love this guy; he’s the only one of my former students I have on speed-dial.
That’s the way it’s supposed to be. People are people–we have friends whose beliefs are different from ours, and so the fuck what? I even have friends (ok, one–no, two, including a relative) who are Pittsburgh Steelers fans.
This Bryan Griem is an utter ass. He is the worst possible advertisement for religion that I can think of (and yeah, there is some steep competition there!). Every preacher I have known in person has been… human. Griem fails that test.
And yet… would I wish him harm? No! Of course not! What sort of human being does that? Ah. Well.. Yeah. That kind. Bryan Griem.
Y’know? So what? So he’s an ass. My student, my friend is defending his right to be an ass. As are more atheists that Griem would be comfortable admitting exist.
Not that it matters… my student? My friend? Yeah, well, he’s a Muslim. I wonder if that is better or worse in Griem’s eyes.
Actually, no, I don’t wonder. I don’t give a flying fuck whether Griem approves of my friend, or of me, or of anything at all. I wish him a long, long life, and with it, the perspective of seeing himself through others’ eyes.