Sometimes my spam filter works too well. I tried to post a comment in the thread below and got banned — from my own blog! So here it is, and we can continue the discussion. Danny said I misjudged evangelicals, and I replied:
Danny, I won’t claim that all evangelicals are contemptuous of Jews, nor will I deny that many feel they owe something to God’s chosen. But it’s hard to square the foundational belief of Biblical literalism — the “I am the way, the truth and the light” part — with this sort of crunchy-granola idea of a Heaven where Jews and Christians live together in perfect harmony. Remember, the Bible gives these folks All The Answers.
I strongly recommend a wonderful book, “The End of Days: Fundamentalism and the Struggle for the Temple Mount,” by Gershom Gorenberg. It’s a fast, fascinating read, and should fill in a lot of gaps in all but the most scrupulously informed American’s knowledge of Israel and the issues surrounding it. You can read an excerpt online, and I think it’s the first chapter, “Cattlemen of the Apocalypse,” about Texas ranchers who are trying to breed a red heifer, the kickoff event in the chain leading up to the battle of Armageddon. I recall a line from one American fundy preacher: “The Jews think they’re in a three-act play. We know the play has four acts.” The fourth, of course, is the one where the unsaved are pitched into the fires of hell and only Jesus’ people enter the kingdom of heaven.
My previous comment was a bit rant-y, and I’m sorry if anyone was offended. But I had just read a WSJ story about the get-out-the-vote effort in Ohio, where one of the suburban soccer moms beating the bushes for Bush said, “Thank goodness sanity and morality prevailed.” Sanity and morality — ground she claimed for her side alone. It made me feel…unChristian.
And with that, I’m outta here for a few days. The fabulous Deb is hitting the midcentury mark, and we’re all gathering to lift a few pops, eat, dance and — because we’re all nearing, at or past the midcentury mark — fall into bed before midnight. Also, Alan’s making a pork tenderloin downstairs, and the aroma has reached the room where I’m sitting now. You know those cartoons where the aroma forms a beckoning hand, and you’re carried along by it? It’s like that.
So: Pork tenderloin, a party with friends and the certain knowledge that pendulums do swing after all — I think that’s enough for me to start the weekend. See you back here Sunday evening, unless the hotel has free wireless internet, in which case maybe I’ll upload some party snaps over the weekend. Don’t bet on it, though.
(Oh, and I finally saw “The Wire” last night. So if you want to discuss that, feel free. Some day I have to sit down and send David Simon and all his writers a long fan letter complimenting them on how well they capture the essential mystery of masculinity, week after week, year after year. I guess that’s what this is, though.)