Saturday, December 12, 2015

Grateful Christians

Decades ago, when I lived among the Southern Christians, there were sporadic attempts to organize the bigots into economic pressure groups, generally called the "Christian Yellow Pages."

The inspiration may or may not have been the Nazi boycott of Jewish businesses in Germany, but it  failed for the same reason that the antisemitic political parties in Vienna around 1900 failed: When everybody thinks alike, there is no percentage in emphasizing that you are just like everybody else.

So the Christian Yellow Pages never amounted to anything.  Not because Christians were appalled at the idea of diverting business from solid local citizens who might go to a different church (or none), but because pretty much everybody was eligible. Christian Yellow Pages is still around and proclaims itself as the premier bigot business organization, but even in a state full of hateful Christian bigots (or just because it is a state filled with hateful Christian bigots) like North Carolina, there are no entrants.

In Florida, there are few, but very few, in rightwing cesspools like Royal Palm Gardens. If you don't want an infidel repairing your convertible top, Royal Palm Gardens, Florida, is the place to go.

You might suppose that the failure of a bigot pressure movement would please someone like me who is a fan of tolerance; but I was insulted by Christians often enough not to jump to conclusions. Indeed, in North Carolina (where I first encountered the Christian Yellow Pages) there is a new bigot crusade under way, now called the Faith Equality Index and more closely tracking the Nazi model.

It does not seem to be having much impact, so for some weeks I have ignored it. However, something showed up in my Facebook feed today that made me rethink my reticence.

Professor Robert George, a leading Christian bigot, went into the hospital overnight facing what was said to be a very serious medical crisis. His fans urged prayers to god, and George was soon said to be out of danger.

His friends rejoiced and by the thousands thanked god. Not one thanked the doctors, nurses and medical technicians who -- I expect -- had something to do with it.

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