Thursday, December 07, 2006

Sectarianist E-mail



I got an e-mail forwarded to me from the American Family Association. Their stand against the Koran instead of the Bible used at a swearing in is sectarianism. The Bible (or the Koran for that matter) is no guarantee against corruption in government. Checks and balances are better for accountability.

This type of baiting reminds me of a cock fight I witnessed in the Philippines. The handlers take turns agitating the roosters against one another. Once the birds' aggression are raised, the handlers remove the sheaths from the blades attached to the claws of the animals. The bet taker in the stand count in the money, the handlers release the birds and there is a cacaphony of gamblers, squawks, feathers and blood. The losing rooster gets cooked and if the winner is still ok to fight, it won't be dinner.

Sectarianism though is playing with dangerous human group dynamics. We all have the right to live peacefully. To agitate people against one another over religion disregards everyone's common interest of living peacefully. It's not yelling "Fire!" falsely in a crowded theatre but is a little more subtle. It suggests religious practice is a requirement to be a human being.

We all smile, we all want to be happy, and we have similiar emotions. Our common interests should not be obscured by religious sectarianism.

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