Sunday, July 11, 2004

moloch speaks!

In today’s Observer, Nick Cohen warns against the long term consequences of giving legal protection to superstition.

The evangelicals were mad and wanted to get even. But there was something more than that. Butler got to the heart of the difficulty of imposing censorship when he wrote in the Melbourne Age : 'If we believe our religion is the only way to heaven, then we must also affirm that all other paths lead to hell. If we believe our religion is true, then it requires us to believe others are false.'

Well, quite. To a devout Jew, what could be more hateful than Christianity's claims that Jesus was the son of God? To a devout Christian, what could be more hateful than Islam's claims that Jesus was only another prophet? To devout Jews, Christians, Muslims, and for that matter, Hindus, Buddhists, Zoroastrians, Jains, Bahais, Mormons and Moonies, what could be more hateful than athiests' claims that there are no gods and they should grow up? To the fundamentalist, anyone who recommends another path is sending people to hell.

But Nick, they are going to hell. All of them. Now, as well as being Britain’s top public intellectual I am also a worshipper of Moloch, with all that this entails. It’s been a while since I’ve actually burned a child alive within the hollow statue of a brazen bull, but that’s cool. I realize that this is not permitted in these benighted times, and in the best New Labour fashion, I do not wish to be judgemental of those who do not understand that the screams of a burning child sound sweet to the ears of God and have a positive affect on labour productivity.

I would like to make this argument more forcefully. Look at Africa, once a great and powerful continent, fertile and forested. Then the Romans destroy Carthage, the Mecca of Molochianism. Since then it’s been nothing but war, famine, colonialism, desertification and starvation. How many children have died since the worship of Moloch was extirpated. How many would have been saved if even one was sacrificed?

Thanks to Mr Blunkett, soon I will be able to campaign openly and publicly for the burning of children, and take to court any who would profess to find this abhorrent. And I am not the only one. Mrs Granger from next door but one is a sturdy local businesswoman and devotee of Humwawa, who rides the South Wind, whose breath smells of entrails and who feasts on the heart’s blood of captured warriors. She, too, is looking forward to the new dispensation. This is truly an ecumenical matter.

We intend jointly to raise our case with Prince Charles, defender of faiths. We also have some advice on organic agriculture that may be of interest to him.