Archive: …and another email that annoyed me…

Archive: Originally published on 09/01/2010 at mac.com

The original message was incomprehensible code… always fun. Sigh.  I can’t copy-paste from Snopes, so read the original here.

It’s about the Eid stamp. I didn’t send this response because I didn’t get around to editing the message, just banged out my grr response, felt better, saved the draft and went on with my life.

Here’s my response:

I have no idea what that message was about — well, not true; I can guess. It came through as nothing but code, incomprehensible to me.

However, from the topic, I suppose it’s about the Eid stamp. The text is here: http://www.snopes.com/politics/religion/eidstamp.asp

So bloody what? The US Post Office has offered Eid stamps (not Christmas) for seven years (They were introduced Sept 1, 2001).

It’s not a Christmas stamp — how stupid was the person who initiated this? “They don’t even believe in Christ and they get their own Christmas stamp” is wrong on so many levels I just want to find you and thump you. Don’t worry, I can’t cause brain damage on those unequipped. Really, my cat is smarter. First, Muslims do believe in Christ — they just don’t think he was the final prophet. They’re on board with his message. Second, It’s not a Christmas stamp — It’s a holiday stamp. Guess what! Christians don’t have a monopoly on holidays! (That’s the greeting card companies.) Sometimes, Eid does fall around Christmas, but the Islamic calendar is a lunar calendar, so it shifts. In 2008, it ended in September. So this message — not relevant anyway! Look, Initiator, I know it’s difficult, but can you try not to be an imbecile?

Eid celebrates the end of Ramadan, which is a month of fasting — no food or drink between dawn and sunset. Ramadan also focuses on charitable works, self-sacrifice, avoiding worldly affairs, feeding the poor and hungry, seeking forgiveness for sins, praying for guidance and mending quarrels. I don’t see anything wrong with this — I think it’s amazingly commendable. I don’t see many Christians taking a month out of their lives to fast, be charitable, ask forgiveness and mend quarrels — while still going to work, serving the nation and all of the citizens. Why don’t you try it, and then ask yourself, hey, don’t they have a reason to celebrate, too?

Why get worked up about it now? It’s not like you’re forced to buy them. You can get the ones with the flag or the bell (I recommend those, since they’ll be good forever and you’ll never have to buy 2 cent stamps again) or whatever atrocity they inflict at holidays — they’re always ugly.

Six million Muslims live in this country. The sale of the Eid stamp does nothing but support the post office — there’s no money that goes anywhere except back into getting the junk mail and bills to your door. You have to ask for the stamp — so your boycott? Kinda useless. Considering the poster boy for the Religious Right, the *Resident of the White House, G. W. Bush, has extended official greetings and participated in Eid celebrations, what right do you have to get worked up? If he can suck it up and recognize that the world is not all Christian, all the time, so can you. Get over yourselves and stop acting like you have Komfortable, Kozy, Klean sheets in your closet. Good grief, people — Grow up. Stop being xenophobic, racist, intolerant assholes and start living in the real world.

Because out here, in the real world, people do bomb and kill. Sometimes they’re Muslim — and just as often over all, they’re Christian, and Jewish, and Buddhist and Hindu and not out for religious ideology but to make a buck somehow. There is intolerant voilence going on all over the world. When you make an issue out of this stamp that doesn’t even affect you, you encourage the violence by saying “My faith is better than yours.” Guess what? You won’t know that til you’re dead. And you might be wrong.

Here’s the thing — I don’t have a dog in this race — I’m not Christian, I’m not Muslim and I’m not Jewish. I’m not Buddhist, I’m not Hindu, I’m not Taoist. I honestly don’t care. I think you’ve all got something good to say and I think you all abuse the power you invest in your faith. I think any religion that says it’s okay to hurt others in the name of a god is wrong — and that means Christians are equally at fault. Christians in this country abuse their children in the name of driving out evil spirits or as “correction”. Christians in this country believe it is perfectly acceptable for a man to beat a woman because she happens to have made the mistake of marrying him. Christians believe murder is an acceptable means of stopping a legal, necessary and safe medical procedure that no one ever wants, but frequently have to have. And Christians in this country think it’s perfectly acceptable to tie a young man to a fence naked in the middle of winter and beat him until he dies for merely not being straight. Jesus would be appalled to have those acts attributed to his church.

I know the “Christians” referenced above are the extremists. But the more liberal Christians don’t get off scot-free. You can say, “But I don’t do those things, I don’t believe they’re right.” Congratulations — you can think and empathize. But what are you doing to stop the extremists? Does your church send money to activities that support any type of violence? Then you need to stop giving your church your money because you’re supporting the problem. When Fred Phelps and his band of nutsos picket a funeral, where’s your church? Do they release a statement saying “Fred Phelps is wrong and we do not support him?” Are they helping the mourners? Or are they just quietly nodding, standing back and agreeing? When Women’s health clinics are threatened or bombed, are you there saying, “I may disagree with your choices, but you have a right to make them and I will defend you until the breath leaves my body. It’s is God’s right to judge — not mine. And anyone who murders is not an avenging angel but a sinner who shall not be defended nor redeemed.” Or are you saying “There’s one more down.” ? If the latter, you’re part of the problem.

Here’s the challenge, Christians: Clean your own house first before you complain about other faiths. Take a cue from your leader — attend the beam in thine own eye before attending the mote in thy brother’s. When you can claim that Christianity is indeed a peaceful, charitable, welcoming religion based on faith, love and hope, then you have the right to complain about others. Right now, your faith is not based on peace, love, hope, or charity. It’s based on brutality and violence and intolerance because in the words of your own founder, Verily I say unto you, Inasmuch as ye have done it unto one of the least of these my brethern, ye have done it unto me. (Matthew 25:40) Or in modern English — how you treat others, strangers and even your enemies is how you treat Jesus. As a group… well, you’re not doin’ so hot…

Note: On this one, I disabled comments. I’m just not interested in your stories of faith, your pressures to convert me, or your flames. I have better things to do with my life.

Labels: Christians, Christmas, eid stamp, email, urban legend

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