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Religions attempt to establish permanent walls between Biblical “good and evil” while science keeps probing the universe and the living things within it to see if the walls should be breached. In attempting to add facts to the human condition, scientists examine weird things. Recently researchers have answered the question of why clapping the hands is universe-wide in showing enjoyment, pleasure, and approval. Did Adam clap when he first saw Eve? Will it confound ministers, priests, and bishops if it is determined chimps in the wild have been seen clapping their hands in pleasure while grooming each other and playing? Ah, the science of genetics strikes again! Remember, we share over 99 percent of our DNA with chimps, so clapping just comes naturally to us.
We are also fascinated by Neanderthals. So much so, we have teams of scientists at Neanderthal campgrounds in Spain studying their teeth and the plants and animals they have consumed. They have also analyzed with chemicals the oldest poop ever found from Neanderthals. It contained cholesterol from meats and other compounds from plants, proving they had a mixed diet.
Bring Your Night-Vision Binoculars And Thermal Devices For The Search
Such research has aroused the interest of people around the world who say they have seen the Abominable Snowman, Sasquatch, Yeti, and creatures known as Bigfoot. Hundreds of hours of TV have images of huge, hairy, knuckle-dragging potential NFL defensive tackles with no visible genitals clomping through forests. They might be Neanderthals thought to have died off 30,000 years ago!
Research reported in the Proceedings of The Royal Society, the most prestigious science organization in the world, indicates there is still no clear evidence that Bigfoot exists. Scientists have tested dozens of examples of Yeti fur supposedly left on trees and brush. So far, the hair and fur examined comes from cattle, dogs, sheep, raccoons, porcupines, human beings, brown bears, and many other animals–and a few plants. There may be a match between brown bear fur and fur of a polar bear that went extinct over about 40,000 years ago. So it is still possible that the Abominable Snowman may be a close relative of the bear and is tromping around the Himalayas. Perhaps the Minnesota Bigfoot Research Team will spot Sasquatch in Paul Bunyan State Park where they are now headquartered.
While Scientists Work To Examine Life On Earth, The Supreme Court Diddles With Life In Heaven
Please do not accuse the five male Roman Catholic Supreme Court justices with utilizing scientific facts as they turn free speech into expensive gold, corporations into artificial persons, and 32,000 religious denominations in the U.S. into government entities. With the recent Hobby Lobby decision , the five heroes of the American Taliban don’t seem to recognize facts, particularly that women like sex.
I’ll let The Guardian’s Jessica Valenti speak for me on that subject: “Women like sex. Stop making ‘health’ excuses for why we use birth control. When 99 percent of the female population uses contraception, it’s sad that we can’t just come out and say that we use it for sex. And that we like sex–a lot. To conservatives, contraception is not about health—it’s about sex, their fear of sex, and a panic over women having sex that doesn’t lead to babies. Women like to have sex. Some women who like to have sex don’t want to get pregnant, so they use birth control. Conservatives won’t admit their deep-seated fear of non-productive sex...But if this is our mid-summer debate, well, let’s at least try to find a reason for the stupidity (of the conservatives), shall we?” Well said, Jessica. She adds that 98 percent of the women who use contraceptives are sick and tired of being called sluts and whores by Republicans, their Court appointees, and the Rush Limbaughs, the Sean Hannitys, and the Faux News crowd.
The Religious World Of Two Navels, Speaking In Tongues, Faith Healing, And Gold
So here comes the bizarre ideas of the Court Taliban that free speech equals money, that corporations are really persons, and that we are a Christian nation. David and Barbara Green, principal owners of Hobby Lobby, are members of the Pentecostal Church of God of Prophecy, a church about 100 years old based in Cleveland, Tennessee. It claims to have congregations in over 130 countries–but has a membership of only about 85,000 in the U.S.
To add some perspective to the “power” of this church, even the state of Arizona has more adherents to the Hindu religion!
The Greens and their church believe that every word in the Bible is inspired by God, without error, and is infallible–just like the Roman Catholic pope is–sometimes. So the Church of God of Prophecy endorses slavery, the stoning to death of fornicators, gays, and adulterers, and believes the “fact” that God killed 42 children because they made fun of Elisha’s bald head. I could go on...
The Greens say they are “born again” Christians, so they are cleansed of all sins. One might think God would leave a sign of this momentous blessing. Perhaps another navel someplace...I have always had a how-many-angels-can-dance-on-a-head-of-a-pin type of question: Did Adam and Eve have navels?
By the way, the Tennessee Snake Handlers are another Pentecostal group with similar beliefs such as speaking with tongues and belief in a “literal” Bible. Snake handling is in Mark:16: “And these signs will accompany those who believe in my name they will...pick up snakes with their hands...and when they drink deadly poison, it will not hurt them at all.” We have lost a few snake handler while they are speaking in tongues.
The Greens: “God Owns The Company”
The Greens have made a personal fortune of $5.1 billion so far, operating 588 stores with over 28,000 employees at last count. Hobby Lobby employs three chaplains to advise thousands of employees. Green says: “We don’t own this company. God owns everything.” Although they say God owns “everything,” God will only get half when they die, according to their wills. Evidently the Green family gets to keep the other half. One would think people who think the Bible is inspired and infallible because of God’s words would have remembered some of the 79 major verses about material wealth:
Matthew 6:24–“No one can serve two masters, for either he will hate the one and love the other, or he will be devoted to the one and despise the other. You cannot serve God and money.”
Proverbs 11:28–“Whoever trusts in his riches will fall, but the righteous will flourish like a green leaf.”
Hebrews 13:5–“Keep your life free from love of money, and be content with what you have.”
Mark 10:25–“It is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for a rich person to enter the kingdom of God.”
Maybe the Greens have a very tiny camel–or God has made a humongous needle especially for the Green’s camels so He can get His hands on their dough.
The Bizarre Idea That Corporations Are People
In Shakespeare’s play, Hamlet is conflicted about what to do to avenge his father’s murder by Uncle Claudius, who then married his mother. Quite a moral problem, particularly when you go to Hell for murder. So he is confused and torn: “I am but mad north-northwest. When the wind is southerly, I know a hawk from a handsaw.” In the Hobby Lobby case, the American Taliban on the Supreme Court seems to be suffering a constant north-northwest wind. The Court’s 5-4 decision is one of the greatest unemployment insurance policies for lawyers and judges ever manufactured. The Hobby Lobby case is all about abortions and contraceptives for humans and whether corporations are artificial persons with religious freedom. Talk about arousing the passions of culture warriors!
The basic question is: Can living, breathing, loving, hating, red-faced, hollering, kicking “natural” persons pass on these characteristics to corporations representing “artificial” persons that exist only for the welfare and wealth of stockholders? Of course, the answer is “NO!” But lawyers, judges, and the Roman Catholic members of the Supreme Court have screwed around with the meaning of words and north-northwest winds in an attempt to satisfy their ideology. They have turned religious and sexual freedom into a cesspool by speaking in obscure lawyerly tongues. This is bizarre Inquisition stuff.
Corporations are legally formed to cover and protect the asses and assets of natural persons who have invested in a business venture. End of story. Legally, its only purpose is to protect the interests of shareholders. The Greens want to use immense profits to spread their version of religious freedom by selling plastic crap made by Chinese prisoners and slave laborers. Chinese families are forced to have abortions because they are limited to one child. The Greens buy Chinese to make American dollars while supporting abortions. Why should two Greens have the right to attempt to force their version of artificial corporate religious freedom on seven billion other natural people on the planet? The Greens health insurance currently pays for vasectomies and Viagra for tired old men but does not pay for many contraceptives for women.
The Bible reveals King Solomon had 700 wives and 300 concubines. I wonder if any of his 1,000 women liked sex. What a Viagra co-pay! Kings 1 tells the story of Solomon, the son of David and Bathsheba, another sexy story. The Bible says Solomon owned 12,000 horses with horsemen and 1,400 chariots. A man of wisdom and wealth by 957 B.C., he was said to have composed 3,000 proverbs and 1,005 songs. A real busy Type A guy. Solomon may have been the first One Percenter.
The Corporation In The Confessional: “Bless The Corporation, Father, For It Has Sinned...”
In the Hobby Lobby case the five Supreme Court Taliban have decided that (gasp) corporations have greater responsibilities than just making money for their shareholders. What could that be? Teaching the world that the Church of God The Prophecy has the religious message the entire world needs? Only seven billion natural persons to go. That corporations should pay their fair share of taxes? That corporations should not pollute the water and air? That closely held corporations have the same qualities as natural persons so they can proselytize their employees, families, and the entire world? What about the Church of Satan,The Tabernacle of The Flying Spaghetti Monster, or Thee Temple Ov Psychick Youth? Shall we give them free rein? Some of the 32,000 denominations can’t even spell!
The Supreme Court has now made it possible to see the board of directors of a Catholic corporation crowd a confessional to seek forgiveness for its sins: “Bless our corporation, Father, for the corporation has sinned. It has sinned against natural persons by producing faulty products, by firing retiring persons, by forcing persons to work off clock, by cheating persons of overtime, by providing unsafe working environments, and...” The sins could go on and on...If the corporation gets 100 Hail Mary’s for penance, do all the employees get together with the CEO and the board of directors and say penance on company time?
Hobby Lobby has opened the culture war floodgates of bigotry, hypocrisy, and further discrimination of gays and women. Over 150 corporations have already threatened to sue the administration over legislation banning laws against sexual and gay discrimination. That’s extra work for thousands of lawyers and hundreds of judges.
Here’s a scientific fact for the Court. A Washington University study determined that if contraceptives were made available free to all, abortion rates would drop 78 percent.
Raymond is a former Marine officer and school board superintendent and resides in Detroit Lakes.