This morning, I woke up thinking about Bill Spooner, The Tubes, and what might be the most harmonically sophisticated power ballad of the 80s, “Don’t Want to Wait Anymore.”
The lyrics in the verses are a bit hokey, but it is a power ballad. I’m typically not a fan, but I make an exception for Bill Spooner. His ability to craft a song like this is mostly unmatched.
Unless I’m mistaken, this some came out in April 1981, or somewhere near there. As the song approaches its 40th anniversary, it still holds up.
The song was never a hit. To me, this fact serves as Exhibit A in everything that is wrong with today’s music business.
Tibo Bat is my Maine Coon. One of his favorite things to do is sit on a foot stool, like he’s waiting for his dinner or something. It’s kind of cute and strange.
Of course, I’m trying to distract myself from the world falling apart, since there’s not much I can do about it.
It’s a time to find an appreciation for those things that will soon be slipping between your fingers, never to be heard or seen again.
As I watch self-declared “good Christians” — who like to declare that they’ve cornered the market on “family values” — destroy the country, it got me thinking about my own values and positions.
I have never believed in any gods, regardless of whether or not they are commercially available for purchase. However, I have believed in being kind to others, as an empathetic being.
A big part of my empathy, sympathy, and humanity is actually informed by my suspicions that there is no god or devil, no heaven or hell, no angels or demons, and that we are utterly alone in the cold, dark, uncaring universe.
An interesting feature that comes with my lack of belief is an acknowledgement that, so far as we know, what is happening on earth right now, or at any time in history, is all that we’ve got.
I see no evidence that the universe cares about us, or has any feelings whatsoever.
Instead of miracles, I see human persistence.
I have been told by Christians I’ve met that their belief in their god gives them comfort and strength. This makes sense, as the horrible negativity that I’ve experienced in the past from aggressive Christians is informed by this comfort and strength.
It breeds a sense of arrogance, not only in the idea that they have all of the answers to everything, but that they are the chosen people who get to enjoy a perceived connection with this being.
This leads to incredible ego spikes. I can only imagine the ego I’d have if I sincerely believed that an all-powerful god and a seemingly and equally all-powerful devil were engaged in an eternal battle over ownership of my soul.
This must drive the ego through the roof.
It also gets combined with what I call “otherism,” where they lift themselves above the others who are not like them.
The end result of this debacle is a group of ego-centric people who believe they are better than everyone else, who cannot wait to die so that they can go to heaven, where they are on their knees bowing to their leader forever.
In fact, many call this afterlife “paradise.”
It draws attention from RIGHT NOW.
It rapes a person of their humanity.
It encourages them to take NO RESPONSIBILITY for where we are right now.
It informed them that their god will swoop down at the last minute and save them. Screw everyone else.
The problem they have is that they don’t get anything in the way of actual interaction with their god, who more than likely does not exist. They will then choose a human being to fill that void.
In America, we all know who they chose.
My point in mentioning all of this is that I sincerely believe that if people did not have their belief in their gods, if they did not view themselves as better than others, if they did not fear the others, if they stopped engaging in judgement and the othering of people, if they were not so confident that an unverified paradise awaits them after they die, if they were not so confident that they are 100% correct about everything…
…then maybe — just maybe — they might be afraid and humble enough to be more caring and compassionate. They’d stop waving the flags and chanting the bumper sticker slogans. They’d stop the tribalism and realize that we are all on this massive ball of dirt, rock, and water, hurtling through space at incredible speed around a nuclear explosion.
Maybe they’d be the loving, caring people they claim to be now. This is why they must tell people that they’re loving and caring, because you cannot currently tell by their words, their actions, their policies, or who they support on the world stage.
Don’t tell me that you’re a good Christian or a good person. I’m not interested in hearing your masturbation, self-praise, and radioactive pat on the back.
Instead, show me. And don’t point it out. Just do it, be it, LIVE IT.
The reward that I see in living this way is immense.
It’s not without its risks. I’ve been taken for a ride more than a few times in life. These days I am way more prepared to catch these inconsistencies, which serves to protect me from harm.
Some people have even told me that I “act more Christian than Christians,” which effectively invalidates the label.
I’m not saying that I want to take your bibles away, or stop you from praying.
What I am saying is STOP!!! Go into a closet and pray, like you are instructed to do in Matthew 6:5-7. As you do this, THINK about who you are supporting, the policies you support, and what you are doing to other Americans, as well as other human beings.
Stop and give thought to messages you receive from preachers, politicians, and newscasters. Are they telling you to be afraid? Why should you be afraid when you have a god on your side? Are they telling you to deal with the “others” in the world?
Why are they feeding you this type of fear and hatred? This is a big question to ask yourself. And be honest. Lying to yourself is one of the biggest lies you can cut.
And, as a favor to me, please stop pointing at people like me, putting horrible acts in our laps, demonizing and condemning us.
American Christians had 56 years to show me the “love” they claim their god has, as well as compassion, and other attributes of humanity that they ascribe to this god, even though it doesn’t match up with how this god is portrayed in his own book.
Not one succeeded. They tried to sell me their philosophy with hatred, judgment, fear, and threats. They tried to sell it to me by socially ostracizing me for the first 21 years of my life.
I cannot buy into a philosophy when the book says one thing, the apologetics say another, and the people say yet another thing.
Beyond that, any philosophy that declares those who don’t believe it to be fools, while stating that it is blasphemous to even question any of it, is not worth my time. Strong philosophies have the ability to stand up to scrutiny.
I’m glad to get that off my chest. Watching a full day of armed insurrection was a great deal to consume and digest.
So far as I know, we are utterly alone in the universe, and this right here — right now — is all that we’ve got. Please try putting down the weapons and angry words, and have some compassion for your fellow human being, before it’s too late.