Prayer before Nebraska-Penn State Game
After the atrocities that had allegedly occurred in State College, PA, emotions ran high as the Nebraska Cornhuskers came to play the Penn State Nittany Lions. Jerry Sandusky, justifiably demonized as a modern-day Werewolf of Wysteria, purportedly committed the unthinkable. The establishment of an endless supply of children to victimize under the guise of a benevolent organization. How could something like this happen? Not only because it was at a university with a squeaky clean reputation, but in the world today at all? I addressed some of the hypocrisy of asking yourself this question in a previous post: The Cowardly Lion, however, it still remains unimaginable that people are so naive and egocentric to become disillusioned with the state of human evolution. Where were these sudden, "child rights activists" when the stat came out that 53% of black fourth grade boys couldn't read at the appropriate reading level? Did they throw their arms up in protest knowing 15 million children die each year of hunger? Did they boycott a buffet because 29,000 Somalian children under age 5 died in a 90-day period of famine? Did any of them send letters to Yingluck Shinawatra, Pratibha Patil, or Dilma Rousseff, to crack down harder on child sex tourism, considering 2 million children succumb to it? Are they begging Congress to address the 15 million children living in poverty in America? Did these child rights activists stop going to mass after 11,000 cases of child molestation were brought to light?
No, none of them did. However, few of these children are Americans. None of these children are fetuses. In the words of the late George Carlin, "If you're pre-born you're good, if you're pre-school, you're fucked."
You can't say that these people clamoring and calling for Jerry Sandusky's blood to flood the streets of Pennsylvania like a more morbid and less black Hurricane Katrina didn't do anything for the plight of children. They, above all, prayed for the victims of Jerry Sandusky. And what would be more fitting?
Before the players took the field on November 12, 2011, a scene that not even Pat Robertson could imagine emerged (hopefully none of the players were gay). The players locked hands, and Ron Brown released an impassioned, heartfelt speech to the Christian god about protecting the students, players, and townspeople involved in the game following the events that defaced so many. That there were,"...little boys around the country trying to find the definition of what manhood is all about." He paraphrased John 1:14, exclaiming that Jesus is the source of grace and truth. And finally, almost drowned out by the wild excitement of the crowd, Ron Brown asked for forgiveness for all of those involved in the scandal as the crowd erupted in a cathartic explosion. What an entrancing series of events.
One need not be a Christian to experience goosebumps with the rest of the spectators. The feelings of guilt, empathy, and fear replaced by comradery, release, anticipation. One also need not be an atheist to painfully endure the hypocrisy, inaccuracy, and trepidation of not only in Ron Brown's diction, but in what both the words spoken and apparent necessity of the prayer reveal about our society in America.
Wait....so attempting to think positively about the events that happened and hoping for the best for all those involved is a bad thing? Absolutely not. However, that's not what this is. That may be the pretense under which this event took place, collectively showing support for victims and insisting on restoring justice, but that's not what this became.
Many of us were ridiculing news stations by turning off the conversation of Sandusky and covering the status of Joe Paterno. We believed that even though Paterno showed immense cowardice in effectively saying he "may have done more in hindsight," it was still evading the issue of the assault on Jerry Sandusky. Maybe the media, like us, was so disgusted by what happened that dismissing Sandusky was merely a defense mechanism preventing them from addressing the intense emotional and cognitive turmoil involved in the case. Regardless, many of us were still upset.
On that powerful November day in State College, nobody seemed upset about detracting from the mythological Empusa Jerry Sandusky to come together, say a prayer, thank God, and pray for his strength, justice, and above all, forgiveness. So why does God get a break?
God, omnipotent, omniscient, and just created not just the children he claims to love perfectly, but also the monster that preys on those children, completely ravishing any chance of a normal life. We, his creation, in search for the acquisition of knowledge by either literally or metaphorically eating a piece of fruit, were thrust into eternal damnation until God, who by the way makes all the rules, was forced sacrifice his Son so that we could again achieve eternal life. How benevolent. Trading theft for murder. The fact of the matter is, God doesn't live up to the moral code of humanity in the 21st century let alone of a boundlessly good being. We praise God through thick and thin, whether we like his will or not, however mysterious it may be. God need not plead the 5th, all he needs to do is plead "mystery." Well I for one don't think there is anything mysterious about an adult playing "pin the dick on a child." We, for the most part, can collectively agree that's fucking horseshit. Why do we give God a pass?
The truth is, god is a construct. Somewhere in our evolution the concept of a god or gods served an adaptive purpose, whether it be in uniting groups or satisfying our psychological predisposition to predict our environment or a natural reaction to the necessity to fulfill social needs. In any event, as Nietszche suggested, God is a reflection of his believers. So if you can justify worshiping a being that loves children, yet leaves room for their victimization in his 6,000 year plan, if you serve a god that allows people to even evolve a sexual taste for children, if you don't question that the Bible calls for bigotry, xenophobia, genocide, refusing to allow the lame to approach the altar, burning a preacher's daughter at the stake if she commits a sexual deviant act, if you don't throw your arms up in dismay because Jesus loves the little children, but they can't get any state money because their mom failed a piss test, if you put all your trust in a God that felt there was no better way to exonerate his "perfect" creations from the most atrocious act of trying to ascertain the knowledge of the universe than the torture of an innocent man...maybe you should take a long, hard look at yourself.
Nonetheless, most of us still praise god when things are going great, then are rebuked by our peers by questioning his will when we aren't sure about him when things go wrong. Like that asshole in the cubicle next to you that gets employee-of-the-month despite you putting twice as many hours in, god always comes out on top.
Here's why I think I should be employee-of-the-month over god this time around:
1. Janice stole my fruit salad out of the refrigerator and I didn't kill her or go home and kill my kid. (Genesis 3:3)
2. Glenn came and said that he didn't approve of my work on the Whistler account. I didn't go murder his family. (Deuteronomy 7:2)
3. Herm always masturbates in the handicapped stall, I am yet to strike him dead on the spot for spilling his seed outside of a vagina. (Genesis 38:9)
4. My boss has a mule on his farm...I'm actually cool with it. (Leviticus 19:19)
5. I'm cool with subordinates spending their holidays with families instead of me. (Matthew 10:34-29)
6. I actively encourage people to maintain stable relationships and reject infidelity in the workplace. (1 King 11:1-3)
7. I'm not friends with Rick Perry.