The Parable of the Sheep and the Goats or How Donald Trump Stole My Old Church

by O Society Mar 15, 2019

Do you know who’s just come ’round knocking on my door?

 

That’s right boys and girls, it’s the Jehovah’s Witnesses!

Maybe later I’ll tell you how it turned out…

For now, we’re going to consider what they are doing. Yes, what the hell are these people doing knocking on some random stranger’s door?

Easy. They’re separating the sheep from the goats.

Don’t you love it when the answer leaves you more confused than you were when you asked the question originally?

This is how it works. I know because one of my friends is a “recovering Jehovah’s Witness.” And when we say, “recovering Jehovah’s Witness,” we mean by the age of 8 years old, this character was giving sermons to hundreds of people at one time. Grew up in it deep. So deep, he had to stop digging the hole, go to the funny farm, and get deprogrammed for PTSD deep. That’s where the “recovery” part comes in…

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What happened is my friend got separated from his family. It was their idea. See, there are sheep, and there are goats. When they knock on the door, it’s a pair of sheep knocking on the door. And when you answer the door, you know what they see?

That’s right, my friend says if he is the sheep, then it makes you the goat.

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For those paying close attention, this means there are only two kinds of animals in the world: Sheep (which is Us) and Goats (which is Them). Sheep are the good folks. Because Jesus was a shepherd, or a fisherman, or a carpenter… or maybe he’s all three at once. But wait, there’s more!

The sheep are the good guys wearing the white cowboy hat, which makes the goats… you got it, the black-cowboy-hat-wearing Devil.

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Yes you are. Ask Billy Graham:

“In these final words about His second coming Jesus says plainly He will separate the sheep from the goats. In that day our opinions about ourselves will not matter. Only His opinion will matter. In that day Jesus sets people aside for eternal reward or everlasting punishment. But we can do something about our destiny now, before that day. We can bow before Him now.

In the second coming only Jesus’ choice will matter. Our choices matter now. How important is that choice set before us? It is so important that at the second coming all the angels in heaven assemble to witness the results. It is so important that God Himself prepared His Kingdom “before the foundations of the world.” The words from Matthew’s gospel are not set before us to satisfy our curiosity. They are divinely inspired to set before us the most important choice we will ever make–will we be sheep or goats in God’s eyes?”

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Yes, they are judging you. My recovering Jehovah’s Witness friend says they have a list. They write people’s names on it, in one of two columns: Goat or Sheep. Yes, they do. In a little book or something.

Parable of the Sheep and the Goats

See, they can’t wait for God to do the judging – why wait? – it’s time now. Tired of waiting.

So along comes Donald Trump. And with Donald Trump comes what?

That’s right…

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…the Great Wall of Trump comes with Trump. But who goes on which side?

Now, in a lab, what you do is lookit the number of chromosomes. A sheep got 54 chromosomes, and a goat? Why he got 60. Done.

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Yes, sometimes there are “others.” Here’s one now. This is a geep named “Butterfly…”

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…and that’s his mom there on the right. Dolly.

No, not like Jeep. It’s Geep. Guh as in Gus.

Yes, of course I’m serious.

Despite the world not falling neatly into binary categories, such as good and evil, right and wrong, sheep and goats (’cause remember, there’s geeps), we’re going to separate everybody anyway. It’s terribly important to do so. Let’s spend our life doing it. OK?

So how can you tell?  You know, just by looking. How can you tell just by looking whether it’s a goat or a sheep? Anybody know?

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Goat’s tail’s got a hard on. Sheep’s tail’s long and droopy. Yes it is.

So goats are horny goat weed Viagra and Sheep are erectile dysfunction virgins, but what about human beings? How can we tell the Us from Them apart? You know, just by looking. We got a whole lotta herd to separate on the earth, now don’t we?

Well, remember that wall? The Great Wall of Trump? What color is it? Did you notice?

Here it is again:

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You see those BIG GOLD LETTERS? They spell “God’s Kingdom” aka “Heaven.” GWOT

The wall itself, well it’s white. Because of course it is.

You see, down here in the South, there are white churches and there are black churches. And never the two shall meet. Oh, it’s voluntary self-segregation. Nobody forces anybody to go to the white church or the black church, we just do. Because it’s “natural,” I suppose.

Yes, we do.

Come on down here one Sunday and go to church. You’ll find two flavors: Chocolate and vanilla. That’s all the churches we got and we like it that way because it’s natural and gimmie back my bullets and God said so period

And that’s the story of how the seemingly unrelated things get lumped together in one single big dichotomy of a world where everything is as simple as black and white.

Yes, black and white. It’s that simple.

White people see nary a black face at church; therefore, ipso facto black people are heathens and God loves white people.

At the right hand of God sits the white sheep.

At the left hand of God sits the black goats.

Republicans right; Democrats left

God is always right and the Devil gets what’s left.

You see? That’s how white nationalism supremacy, right-wing extremism, patriotism on steroids, pseudo-populism, Biblical fundamentalism, and racism all became one on Trump’s side of the wall.

WINNING!

Thus apple pie, Chevrolet, Budweiser, AR-15s… all these images and memes and are reinforcement of beliefs, and beliefs do magical thinking. Do you see it?

Squint your eyes a little and a yellow ribbon with “Support our Troops” becomes neoconservative forever war cheerleading. Chevy and Ford become “you’ll pry my motor oil, gasoline, and the rest of these fossil fuels from my cold dead hands.”

Marlboros and Jack Daniels are for white people, Newports and Hennessy are for black folks.  Virtue signalling.

Right wing extremists have their own version of Political Correctness, it’s called Patriotic Correctness. Flying an American flag in front of your house means you are a Republican, doesn’t it?

The Confederate flag? Hell, the flag’s about loosing your virginity on a blanket with Becky Sue down by the lake while Lynyrd Skynrd plays on the jukebox. See? It has nothing to do with racism! Except it does. Cultural signifiers.

You ever heard of Black Jesus?

No! Of course Jesus and Santa Claus are white, Stupid! War on Christmas!!!

The War on Christmas is why it is SO imperative Trump builds his GWOT: Rapture Armageddon Anti-Christ beast with seven heads imperative second coming of Jesus right N-O-W

Move the US embassy to Jerusalem, man… it’s a sign! An omen!

See? It’s the end of days, man. Is Trump the Anti-Christ or the Second Coming of Jesus?

Who knows?

If all of this doesn’t make your head hurt from the Hebrew Hammer of Cognitive Dissonance, then congratulations, you’ve been raised up right! Spare the rod, spoil the child, an eye for an eye, gimmie that old time religion!

It even explains why Neo-Nazis love Taylor Swift so much. Aryan goddess. Mmm… hmm

Push play now. You’ll see…

 

Donald Trump Stole My Old Church by Brett Younger

When I was a high school senior I became angry with my church. The story of Jesus was leading me away from what they taught me. I wondered if they had read the Bible they kept telling me to read.

Here is a partial list of things I stopped believing: Christians are going to fly up into the sky any minute. The earth is 6,000 years old. Budweiser is the devil’s poison. Women are disqualified from telling the Christian story if there is a pulpit in front of them. Gay organists can serve the church only if they are not seen in public with their partners. The Pope is the anti-Christ. My Jewish friends are going to burn in hell forever. Everyone who smokes marijuana should be executed. Kindergarten teachers should carry handguns. Poor people get what they deserve

I decided that my church was filled with narrow-minded fundamentalists who were not worthy of my new enlightened state.

But as time passed, I made peace with the church of my childhood. I have been growing more appreciative. They may have taught me a few terrible things, but they also introduced me to Jesus. I defended them by saying that my old church is a victim of the culture.

Here is a partial list of the lies I told myself: The people in my old church are not against women, but actually believe they are defending the family. They sound racist because they are afraid. They appear homophobic only because they do not know gay people. They will stop being prejudiced against Muslims as soon as they meet Muslims. They defend gun ownership because they love hunting. Their hostility towards the poor is a misunderstanding of the American dream.

I convinced myself that while much of what they believe goes against the teachings of Christ, they are Christians at heart. I was wrong.

Two weeks ago, I went to my parents’ Southern Baptist church. I had not been to a service there in 35 years. The peace I had made with my childhood church began to fall apart.

The pickups in the parking lot had Trump/Pence bumper stickers. American flags were in the front yard, the front of the sanctuary, and on the front of the order of worship. The congregation sang God Bless America, My Country, ’Tis of Thee and Onward Christian Soldiers. I heard, “We could use more fire and brimstone,” “We finally have a president who is doing what needs to be done” and “We have to get rid of Obamacare right now.”

Eighty-seven percent of my parents’ church-infested county in Mississippi voted for Trump. Donald Trump has made it obvious that my old church is not filled with followers of Christ. You cannot follow Jesus and support a tax cut for the rich that would end health care to millions of the oldest, poorest and sickest people. You cannot follow Jesus and hate minorities. You cannot follow Jesus and treat women as inferior.

When faced with the choice of following Christ by caring for the hungry or supporting a politician who promises to make the rich richer, my old church ignores the faith they profess. When given the opportunity to extend hospitality to refugees, my old church chooses bigotry. When responding to a dishonest president, my old church defends the lies.

I have come to the painful realization that God is not the point of my old church. My old church is shaped more by Fox News than Jesus’ Good News. My old church is a chaplain to nationalism, patriarchy and nostalgia. My old church is the enemy of the environment, science and equality.

I am not going to defend my old church any more. If you are acting like a racist, homophobe or misogynist in 2017, then you are a racist, homophobe or misogynist.

How can anyone think that a church that supports Trump is what Jesus had in mind?

St. Augustine said, “The church is a whore, but she is my mother.” My mother church is sleeping with Donald Trump.

Conservatives use “patriotic correctness” to regulate speech, behavior and acceptable opinions.

Donald Trump’s second ‘USA Thank You Tour 2016’ speech, in three minutes

Donald Trump delivered the second speech of his victory tour in Fayetteville, N.C., Dec. 6. Here are the key moments from his address.

Donald Trump has not been shy about the “big problem in this country”: political correctness. Trump has blamed PC for the attack at the Pulse nightclub in Orlando (“They have put political correctness above common sense, above your safety and above all else,” he tweeted) and the rise of the militant group Islamic State. His voters agreed (indeed, it might even have been the reason for his victory).

It’s not just him. Political correctness has become a major bugaboo of the right in the past decade, a rallying cry against all that has gone wrong with liberalism and America. Conservative writers fill volumes complaining how political correctness stifles free expression and promotes bunk social theories about “power structures” based on patriarchy, race and mass victimhood. Forbes charged that it “stifles freedom of speech.” The Daily Caller has gone so far as to claim that political correctness “kills Americans.”

But conservatives have their own, nationalist version of PC, their own set of rules regulating speech, behavior and acceptable opinions. I call it “patriotic correctness.” It’s a full-throated, un-nuanced, uncompromising defense of American nationalism, history and cherry-picked ideals. Central to its thesis is the belief that nothing in America can’t be fixed by more patriotism enforced by public shaming, boycotts and policies to cut out foreign and non-American influences.

Insufficient displays of patriotism among the patriotically correct can result in exclusion from public life and ruined careers. It also restricts honest criticism of failed public policies, diverting blame for things like the war in Iraq to those Americans who didn’t support the war effort enough.

For example, in the aftermath of 9/11 and the run-up to the Iraq War, David Frum labeled dissenters as anti-American. Jonah Goldberg wrote that opponents of the war “can only get passionate about the perfidy of our own president.” Conservative gadfly Robert “Buzz” Patterson went further, calling much of the Democratic Party, Hollywood, big media, college campuses and many other organizations “traitors.”

The French government’s opposition to the invasion of Iraq prompted Congress to rename French fries as “freedom fries” in congressional cafeterias, a 21st-century liberty cabbage. When the Dixie Chicks opposed the Iraq War, many stations pulled the group’s music from the air so as not to “trigger” listeners. Fans destroyed Dixie Chicks albums in grotesque public demonstrations. The radio became a safe space.

More recently, 49er quarterback Colin Kaepernick sat and then kneltfor the national anthem to protest police brutality. Tomi Lahren, host of “Final Thoughts,” gave an incoherent rant about soldiers dying for Kaepernick’s right to speak so, therefore, he should shut up and stand for the national anthem. Some fans even burned their Kaepernick jerseys in protest. Others said Kaepernick should “get the hell out” if he doesn’t love America. Myths of an NFL rule mandating standing for the anthem, even though no such rule actually exists, were spread to justify the outrage and point to a double standard of enforcement whereby the NFL condones protests against America but players get fined if they wear different-color shoelaces. In such a narrative, patriots are the victims of an elite liberal power structure.

Rep. Lee Zeldin (R-N.Y.) tweeted that “Kaepernick should think about the service members risking their lives to protect his freedom to be both rich and unpatriotic.” Kaepernick’s microaggression even offended liberal Supreme Court Associate Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, who said the protest was “dumb and disrespectful,” words she later retracted.

Believing in American exceptionalism means that anything less than chest-thumping jingoism is capitulation. Unionized public employees who can’t be fired are bad at their jobs and are more interested in increasing their own power than fulfilling their public duties — except if they are police or Border Patrol officers, who are unselfishly  devoted to their jobs. The crime rate is high and rising, so when facts show criminality has declined substantially over the decades, the patriotically correct respond with appeals to the bubbled feelings of the common man.

One of the biggest critics of patriotic correctness is National Review writer Jim Geraghty. He responded to outrage over Jeb Bush and his wife, Columba, speaking Spanish at home by writing, “What business is it of yours?” and said there is “something bafflingly insecure about our culture if we genuinely feel threatened by foreign languages spoken in the private sphere of the family home.”

Complaining about political correctness is patriotically correct. The patriotically correct must use the non-word “illegals,” or “illegal immigrant” or “illegal alien” to describe foreigners who broke our immigration laws. Dissenters support “open borders” or “shamnesty” for 30 million illegal alien invaders.

The punishment is deportation because “we’re a nation of laws” and they didn’t “get in line,” even though no such line actually exists. Just remember that they are never anti-immigration, only anti-illegal immigration, even when they want to cut legal immigration.

Black Lives Matter is racist because it implies that black lives are more important than other lives, but Blue Lives Matter doesn’t imply that cops’ lives are more important than the rest of ours. Banning Islam or Muslim immigration is a necessary security measure, but homosexuals should not be allowed to get married because it infringes on religious liberty.

Transgender people could access women’s restrooms for perverted purposes, but Donald Trump walking in on nude underage girls in dressing rooms before a beauty pageant is just “media bias.”

Terrorism is an “existential threat,” even though the chance of being killed in a terrorist attack is about 1 in 3.2 million a year. Saying the words “radical Islam” when describing terrorism is an important incantation necessary to defeat that threat. When Chobani yogurt founder Hamdi Ulukaya decides to employ refugees in his factories, it’s because of his ties to “globalist corporate figures.”

Waving a Mexican flag on U.S. soil means you hate America, but waving a Confederate flag just means you’re proud of your heritage. The phrase “Happy Holidays” instead of “Merry Christmas” needs a trigger warning.

Blaming the liberal or mainstream media and “media bias” is the patriotically correct version of blaming the corporations or capitalism. The patriotically correct notion that they “would rather be governed by the first 2,000 people in the Boston telephone directory than by the 2,000 people on the faculty of Harvard University” because the former have “common sense” and the “intellectual elites” don’t know anything, despite all the evidence to the contrary, can be sustained only in a total bubble.

Poor white Americans are the victims of economic dislocation and globalization beyond their control, while poor blacks and Hispanics are poor because of their failed cultures. The patriotically correct are triggered when they hear strangers speaking in a language other than English. Does that remind you of the PC duty to publicly shame those who use unacceptable language to describe race, gender or whatever other identity is the victim du jour?

The patriotically correct rightly ridicule PC “safe spaces” but promptly retreat to Breitbart or talk radio, where they can have mutually reinforcing homogeneous temper tantrums while complaining about the lack of intellectual diversity on the left.

There is no such thing as too much national security, but it’s liberals who want to coddle Americans with a “nanny state.” Those who disagree with the patriotically correct are animated by anti-Americanism, arepost-American, or deserve any other of a long list of clunky and vague labels that signal virtue to other members of the patriotic in-group.

Every group has implicit rules against certain opinions, actions and language as well as enforcement mechanisms — and the patriotically correct are no exception. But they are different because they are near-uniformly unaware of how they are hewing to a code of speech and conduct similar to the PC lefties they claim to oppose.

The modern form of political correctness on college campuses and the media is social tyranny with manners, while patriotic correctness is tyranny without the manners, and its adherents do not hesitate to use the law to advance their goals. If we have a term to describe this new phenomenon — I nominate patriotic correctness.

One thought on “The Parable of the Sheep and the Goats or How Donald Trump Stole My Old Church

  1. Added a third part to this piece. I wrote the first third (Sheep & Goats), while the second part (Trump Stole My Church), and now the added Patriotic Correctness to tie all the ends together on how this concoction of white nationalism and Prosperity Gospel came to be accepted by such a large segment of the American population. It’s American Fascism.

    Like

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