I was still an atheist when I transferred colleges. I’d started out at a small liberal arts college – chosen because of its distance from home more than anything else – but realized that I’d erred and applied to a large university in my birth state. I was admitted. Going to the summer orientation weekend I met a nice guy and, as the orientation progressed, we hung out quite a lot and requested each other as roommates. Which was, from my experience, an important lesson from my prior collegiate experience: a bad roommate can render your time there a smoking ruin.
As it turned out he was a recent convert to having Jesus as his personal Lord and Savior. Which was not a problem – his not leaving me alone about it was a problem. I also got targeted by Campus Crusade for Christ, having landed on the Dean’s List which was published in the school newspaper. And while I fended them off I found myself getting quite put out over their pressure to, likewise, accept Jesus. Never mind their bait-and-switch wanting to interview a “high achiever” which turned to a strong-arm conversion pitch.
Even as an atheist I told them numerous times that. having been born a Jew, I was part of a stiff-necked people. I had been relatively mild in my atheism up until then and I think it was in response to this relentless pressure that I became quite obnoxious in a reaction to these attempts. And obnoxious to the “sheep worshippers” in general, as I’d call Christians… let alone “sky g-d believers” of all types in general. I finally mellowed a couple of years out of grad school.
UNDERSTANDING THE OTHER SIDE
“He who knows only his own side of the case, knows little of that. His reasons may be good, and no one may have been able to refute them. But if he is equally unable to refute the reasons on the opposite side; if he does not so much as know what they are, he has no ground for preferring either opinion.”
— John Stuart Mill, On Liberty, Chapter 2
I was still an atheist and recently married to my current wife when I had an epiphany about the ceaseless attempts I had experienced by them to change my beliefs. To wit: these people were gripped by fear for my eternal soul. They truly believed that were I not to accept Jesus, that my soul would be condemned to eternal darkness, despair, and torture. As the comedian “Mr. Bean” said in a comedic sketch playing the devil as he welcomed new damned souls (video: 3:04):
You’re all here for eternity… oooh, which I hardly need tell you is a heck of a long time…
Truly believing that someone who had not accepted Jesus was doomed to such a fate – torment without relief for, literally, eternity – how hard would you fight to save them from that, particularly if you cared about them? If you had even a shred of decency, pretty hard. I have, thus, come to understand their zeal in their efforts towards me, and others. I still disagree with some of their tactics, but at least finally understand their motivation.
ECHOES IN COVID
So now we’ve had fear and dread pumped into society nonstop for over a year. Death counts! Case counts! Variants and more contagious variants and even more dangerous variants! Fear fear fear! (Again, not discounting this is, in fact, a real virus; my primary customer, in India, says it is very bad there.) You’re going to kill grandma if you hug her, you’re going to kill countless others if you don’t wear a mask you selfish person you. It’s worked. People are now terrified. Leading to products like this:
And I came to realize that Covidianism is now a faith. If you are a believer…
- You wear the ritual garb – the mask – not just to protect yourself but to commit an act of noble, selfless charity by wearing it to protect others. (Thus, empathy has been weaponized to compel obedience.)
- You practice the rituals, like social distancing, no contacts, elbow bumps, etc.
- You actively harass heretics who do not comply and feel good & virtuous about it. (I.e., Huxley’s quote*, and C.S. Lewis’ quote.)
- You accept the Holy Sacrament – i.e., The Jab as your personal Lord and Savior – and implore everyone you know to do the same.
- You discuss shunning and ostracizing those who do not accept The Jab (examples here, here, and here). Just like fundamentalists of many sorts shun heretics.
In Nomine Fauci, et Maski, et Spiritus Vaccini, Amen.
Two, specifically, though I have others.
I was at a local big box store where everyone was staring at my unmasked face, and two young women were talking as I went by. One said to the other “We have a non-believer”!
Now there were many things they could have said (and I’ve heard, under peoples’ breath, that I’m stupid, selfish, an idiot, among other things). The fact that they couched it in what I think is clearly religious terminology is very revealing.
A second example: My kids have a former schoolmate who lives within a long walk of us. Last year we strolled over a few times for exercise and while the kids were kept apart they were, at least, able to converse and play a little while the parents and I – again, separated – talked. So now that it was spring break I texted the parents to ask if I could bring my kids over or vice versa. And was told, point blank, that they only socialized with people who had been fully jabbed and passed the two-week period after the second shot. They asked what our status was. (In other words, we only associate with the converted.)
I told them that my wife was going to get it (she just got the first Moderna shot a few days ago; that evening she was feverish with “not feeling good” and I’m worried about what might happen after the second one – but she thinks I’m a tinfoil hat loon on this so she’ll get it over my concerns). I added that I was not going to get it and, out of respect for their concern, would drop my kids off and let them play.
The response took a while: my kids could only come if they kept their “social distance” and wore masks, and the only playing – bathroom breaks aside – was to be outside. I asked if their child would also wear a mask. I haven’t heard back. We were not “of the body”. – hat tip to Star Trek’s Return of the Archons.
This sounds strangely like another religion that states several things about non-believers, for example:
Quran (53:29) – “Therefore shun those who turn away from Our Message and desire nothing but the life of this world.”
So, my surviving sister (well, technically, half-sister) is older than I. Almost every time we talk she asks if I have gotten it and WHY NOT? My two cousins, again older than I, the same thing. WHY have you not gotten The Jab? Emails from the kids’ school assumes we parents have all had it. Discussions of vaccine passports being mandatory for travel, for restaurants and bars, for colleges, possibly even for merely food shopping or employment itself all point to massive societal forces moving to get this stuff injected despite it being authorized for emergency use and containing synthetic genetic material with a serious safety concerns (e.g., here, here, here, here, and here) and potential actual cellular-DNA implications.
Why? Concern for our survival. They are convinced they are doing good and must save us from death.
On the radio: relentless CDC and more local PSA spots announcing places and times and contacts to get The Jab. And while we don’t watch a lot of TV aside from “Captain Underpants” and such, a few weeks ago I overnighted at the local ER and at least every ten minutes were spots showing doctors intoning and almost ritually chanting: It’s safe and effective… it’s safe and effective … it’s safe and effective …
Why? Concern for our survival. They are convinced they are doing good and must save us from death.
Yet read the fine print:
So you don’t know that it’s going to actually prevent continued contagion, you don’t know what the long term effects are… but you’re manically obsessed with pumping this into every living human? Including infants down to six months?
Thanks to my college experiences with that roommate and Campus Crusade, I recognize a HARD SELL. Accept the sacrament or be expelled from society.
Convert and be a full member of society, or do not and be a second-class dhimmi, or die – says Islam.
Convert and be a full member of society, or do not and be a second-class citizen – says the Church of the Covidian. And while die is not – yet – on the table… or is it? Just what is going on at this facility being set up in Canada, as one example:
Even with highly effective vaccines, current levels of hesitancy in the United States could require us to continue to keep workplaces and schools closed and to keep wearing masks through at least the end of 2022 to keep the pandemic under control.
Translation: Convert by accepting the Jab Sacrament or society gets it. Forever. And if you don’t convert and save society from the lockdowns you are, therefore, evil. An evil to be isolated and eventually expunged:
Before the Holocaust began, the Nazi government of Germany began their persecution of the Jews when they took power in 1933. The Nazis eroded the place of Jews in Germany society with prohibitive laws, boycotts, and anti-Jewish violence; in November 1938, the government led a nation-wide attack on Jewish homes, businesses, and synagogues, causing millions of marks worth of damage and ninety-one deaths.
By the time the war began in September 1939, the Nazi regime had completely alienated the Jewish population of Germany, taking away their rights and citizenship and beginning to put them in concentration camps. The Nazi’s punitive measures against Jews in the years 1933-1939 were the foundation for the eventual near-destruction of European Jewry.
- Laws to isolate non-Covidians from employment and general business, let alone potentially accessing food? Check.
- Violence – still on a small scale and thankfully non-lethal as yet – against non-Covidians? Check.
- Alienation and othering of non-Covidians and painting them as evil? Check.
- Societal and media praise for those who do the above? Check.
And since the majority of Jab resisters are Conservatives, and – at least in perception – overwhelmingly white, this takes on and fuels a racial tone as well:
Is the Fourth Turning about to happen domestically? We seem to be about due:
I hate to sound like a broken pessimistic record. But pray. Prep. Find allies. It’s coming. And remember, one on one, especially with President Asterisk having at least putative control of the military, you’re toast. Instead keep in mind some lessons from here.
Hashem help us all. And may He bless America… and Western Civilization by extension which, if America falls to chaos, is in dire jeopardy too. For this has become a religious war, a war of BELIEVERS vs. HERETICS… which is IMHO the very worst kind of war. For those driven by a sense of goodness and doing right and good in the world are the worst sort of oppressors. Remember, the three men standing in this picture were convinced they were ridding the world of an evil too:
* Men show at least as much zeal in mischief as in well doing, in folly as in wisdom. The surest way to work up a crusade in favor of some good cause is to promise people that they will have a chance of maltreating someone. Men must be bribed to build up and do good by the offer of an opportunity to hurt and pull down. To be able to destroy with good conscience, to be able to behave badly and call your bad behavior ‘righteous indignation’ — this is the height of psychological luxury, the most delicious of moral treats.
— Aldus Huxley, Introduction (July 24, 1933), in Samuel Butler, Erewhon (1934), The Easton Press