I have a bat habit of thinking of random things to blog about, but never actually blogging about them. In the interest of getting those thoughts out to the world, I’m beginning a series I’ll call “Weekend Ruminations,” where I’ll blog about random things that popped into my head throughout the week that I wanted to briefly talk about.
ITEM THE FIRST:
While I was at Target yesterday, I noticed a couple with a pre-teen son in the checkout line with a board game-size box labeled “Creationary.” Instantly, I began wondering whether it was related to creationism, and why Target would be selling something like that. As it turns out, it’s really a sort of Lego Pictionary, where the player picks a category, builds something in that category, and challenges others to guess what it is.
Nevertheless, this got me thinking: there has to be a whole industry out there full of companies that do nothing but make toys for the children of fundamentalist Christians. Back when I was a hardcore believer, I played a collectible card game called Redemption – sort of a Magic: The Gathering for bible-thumpers. It’s made by a company that also makes Bible Taboo, Apples to Apples: Bible Edition, and dozens of other Christianized versions of of otherwise secular games. This leads me to wonder: which companies that I frequently buy from are spending some of that money to promote nonsense like this? I know all about companies like Chic-Fil-A, but who else is getting rich off of lying to children?
ITEM THE SECOND:
I’m originally from a smallish town in Michigan. Lately, some pretty scary stuff has been going down in Michigan; i.e., the Republican-led state government has instituted a policy which allows an “emergency” financial manager to fire elected officials and abolish the charter of a town as is deemed necessary. This policy has existed in a much more limited form for a long time; essentially, the financial manager could step in to solve a city’s budget crisis and would then leave. Now, the party of small, decentralized government is doing its best to promote taxation without representation and use the power of a centralized government to strong-arm city governments to its will.
First target: Benton Harbor, a poor, majority African American city. This city is being targeted by a land developer who wants to take over the public beach and turn it into part of a country club where the annual membership fee is about half of the average annual income of $10,000. The law which expanded the powers of the financial planner was sponsored in the Michigan House of Representatives by the Representative for Benton Harbor.
(Well… sort of. It may be the case that Rachel Maddow, as seen in the clip above, is excluding a few key facts about the story. But even with the corrections I just linked to, the real story is still crazy.)
ITEM THE THIRD:
It’s Easter, a holiday you may know as Ostara, or the Festival of the Goddess Ēostre, or any of a number of other Pagan or Egyptian festivals noting the return of spring and the associated celebration of fertility. Christians celebrate the resurrection of Jesus, an event which… well, to put it bluntly, isn’t supported by any contemporary accounts from outside of the Bible, and which was apparently accompanied by events which damn well should have been noticed by some historian or another. Funny that the Jerusalem Zombie Invasion somehow evaded notice.