Mississippi: God’s Little Test for the Faithful
When comparing the states in this country, Mississippi comes in last or near last in enough important categories to safely declare that the state has some grave problems.
Last week, I blogged about the poll results recently released by the Pew Forum on Religion & Public Life. One of the stats that I failed to mention in my short post was that (if you haven’t guessed where I am going with this, you are probably new to this blog. Welcome!) Mississippi is the most religious state in the United States of America. In fact, it swept the three categories used to rate religiosity: worship attendance, frequency of prayer, and belief in god.
The upshot of this, of course, is that Chubbs McNoRead may be destitute, but at least his arteries stand a decent chance of being bathed in the healing light of Jay-sus prior to suffering his 4th heart attack.
Earlier this week, the Natchez Democrat newspaper wrote an editorial taking all of these facts into account. The title: Mississippi Focuses on What Matters. The editorial, delivered with cloying faux-humility, essentially says that the afterlife is so important that Mississippi needn’t concern itself with any metrics other than those of religiosity.
This strikes me as a gross display of rationalization. Who actually believes that when education statistics come out, Mississippians say, “who cares about literacy? We’ve got our eyes on a heavenly reward!” Of course, it also strikes me as a disgraceful show of denial. The editorial essentially says that obesity, poverty and ignorance are fine in Mississippi’s case. The editorial board of a newspaper is counting on the promises of their chosen mythology to the point of ignoring their current shitswamp.
Thanks to Atheist Revolution for the Natchez link and to Ian for some key phrases.