Wednesday, September 19, 2012

The revolting invasion of American evangelists

Cori Bernardi hasn’t thought hard enough, which is in line with my opinion of him as a thinker. If “sex with a man” or “sex with a woman” is on the same continuum as “sex with a sheep”, then doesn’t heterosexual sex sit on the same line?

But that’s a digression before I even start.

So: Cori Bernardi gets a wrist-slap for expressing loathsome opinions in the Senate. It really is a wrist-slap: none of the positions he resigned from actually cost him money, only prestige.

As the telescope, or microscope, or solipsist-scope (my own coinage, denoting a media that can’t look out beyond its own viewpoint) drills down on Bernardi, nobody thought to ask Our Friend Google the Rememberer.

If they had, they’d have found out that Bernardi’s insane paranoia – homosexuality is a slippery slope to sheep-fucking – isn’t even his own idea.

This doesn’t surprise me: Bernardi has always struck me as too stupid for invention. He is an organizer, a numbers man, an idea-free careerist, all balls, no brains.

Go back just a little distance in America, Land of the Unhinged. The debate was about permitting the military to acknowledge that some of its members are gay. Simple statistics would tell you that, but nobody was allowed to say so, in a delicious paradox for a country that deifies its First Amendment.

And out among America’s theocrats-in-waiting was the same theme. The repeal of laws banning acknowledged* homosexuality in the military was – go on, guess – touted as permitting bestiality. If you need some references, there’s this or this.

Or there’s former hopeful Rick Santorum following the nutter line, then denying he’d done so – and that interview, defended and re-interpreted to remove the stain of creepiness that it deservedly received, dating back nine years.

In other words, the link – the “slippery slope” argument that draws an utterly kooky continuum starting at sex with a human and ending at sex with a different species – goes back at least that far.

It’s just another piece of the detestable invention of American snake-oil evangelism. It’s not even Bernardi’s own idea. He’s just spouting someone else’s drivel at us.

And that drivel is the demon spawn of hardline evangelistic American religion, which has been trying to invade Australia, infest our thought, and pollute our politics. In at least the latter, they have succeeded. And in the latter, Cori Bernardi - who seems to owe his loyalties to someone in the USA more deeply than anyone in Australia - deserves not a slap on the wrist, but the loss of his endorsement.

Like that'll ever happen. 

*"Acknowledged" is a personal preference. "Open" or "out" still implies, in too many places, that there was something to hide. "Acknowledgement" is more like a statement of fact, which suits me better.

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