The thing with brats is that they (1) lack the brain wiring to take “NO” for an answer, (2) lack a grasp of theory of mind to understand that other people have different thoughts on a subject, and (3) are utterly inconsolable when faced with the prospect of coming to terms with the reality of Points 1 and 2. For the Roman Catholic Church it is the prospect of losing its vast and steady supply of ignorant believers to the more reasonable regard for sex and reproduction that modern thinking offers. For Yellow Army stalwarts like Conrado de Quiros, it was the prospect of his pal-now-President Benigno “Noynoy” Aquino III losing the 2010 presidential elections back in May of that year.
Indeed, Conrado de Quiros at the height of the heated campaign seemingly went as far as inciting rebellion, highlighting “the specter of massive breakdown (to put it charitably) or massive fraud (to put it accurately) the Comelec’s type of automation bodes”; to which he came to the real point of his fear-mongering:
Or more to the point, what can the Aquino camp do in the event of massive cheating? Organize a walkout of observers at the first hint of cheating? Maybe. Whip up public indignation? Maybe. Create a Yellow Army? Maybe.
Fast forward to today and we find the Roman Catholic Church engaged in a similar fit of foot stomping, first issuing a threat of excommunication against President Aquino, then suggesting to its flock how civil disobedience is still an “option” in case President Aquino remains adamant in his support for making artificial contraceptives available to Filipinos via state distribution channels.
What is the common denominator here?
There are two common denominators in both cases, actually. The first common denominator is how fear of great eee-vils is used to move the masses to latch on to otherwise nebulous and moronic belief systems — whether it be the hollow spectre of “tyranny” and “injustice” that only “people power” can triumph over or the prospect of “eternal damnation” that only blind beholdenness to nonsensical dogma can avert. The second common denominator is how violation of the Law and disrespect for and defiance of state institutions and offices is made out to be a “moral” option for citizens — quite presumptuous that one person or an organisation would see itself as possessing of the authority to summarily nullify the edicts of duly-elected officers of the state.
The Church after all is in no threat of imminent collapse, considering that it derives much of its power from an enduring primal fear of the unknowable of what lies beyond death residing deep in the psyches of all human beings. In short, adherence to religious schools of thought don’t require much deviation from our reptilian impulses, making the power base of the Church formidable in its stability. On the other hand, making a modern state at the very least function, and at best prosper requires an application of modern intellectual faculties and civilising disciplines that oftentimes require us to overcome the primitive million-year-old evolutionary legacies still embedded in our minds.
The Church takes a position today that is both breathtaking in its infantile lack of regard for the bigger scheme of what it means to be a modern state and at the same time consistent with its legacy as one of the great suppressors of The Truth…
The bishops said they had the moral authority to call for such an action if the government promoted an action contrary to the teachings of the Church.
“The Catholic Church in the Philippines can do that if it decides to do that because for one thing, civil disobedience is a moral option, one of the moral options,” said Msgr. Juanito Figura, secretary general of the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of the Philippines (CBCP).
“Contrary to the teachings of the Church”?
Excuse me, Padres, but since when has the state been obligated to defer its state policies to the “teachings” of any one of the large number of quaint cults that infest our primitive society? I also find that there is a quaint irony in the use of the word “civil” in the civil disobedience being incited by a religious organisation that does not recognise a civil marriage, for one.
Interestingly enough, de Quiros is on the right side of things nowadays, pointing out how “the Church’s opposition to P-Noy’s championing of the RH bill—the best thing he’s done in quite some time — merely unmasks its medievalism and growing alienation from its flock”.
For me this illustrates the importance of focusing on issues rather than on people and harks back to that famous observation said to have been made by Eleanor Roosevelt:
Small minds talk about people;
Average minds talk about events;
Great minds talk about ideas.
Bozos — and their quaint slogans — that figure in politics and religion come and go, but the principles to which they add to or subtract from evolve and endure on the basis of their relevance and robustness. We see in the examples of de Quiros’s rapidly eroding credibility (despite his occasionally getting things right) and the Church’s steady slide to irrelevance as enlightened thought takes on greater and greater bandwidth in the Filipino’s mind that our salvation as a society lies not in people and Medieval relics but in a clear and consistent set of principles.
Perhaps it is when we begin to be more adept at guiding our thoughts and actions with principles rather than with the empty words and dramatic public spectacles of morons who dazzle us with their impressive robes, their purchased “expertise” and credentials, and their associations with old relics of past epochs, that we can begin to consider ourself a truly modern, secular, and free people.