Words to live by (and that I have largely lived by) from one of my favorite authors- the late Edward Abbey.
Seemingly increasingly relevant today as we see in the rise of the far right, the religious right…those that wish to impose the christian version of Sharia law on our country.
In a way it reminds me of a bit from another of my favorite authors- Hunter S Thompson. Who had discussed one of his favorite drinking buddies being the very conservative Pat Buchannan- not because they saw the world in remotely similar ways, nor because they could change each others minds- but because they could openly and honestly discuss things- and maybe, just maybe, make the other see that they are not quite as right, as they thought.
So what brought me to this train of thought again? The anti-gay marriage amendment in NC. Obamas counterpoint. My recent travels to the south and east coast, Rick Santorums campaign, the rise of the rabit right…who wrap themselves in Jesus- the prince of peace while spewing the intolerance of the old testament…
So yes. While I’ll be the first to admit that alcohol is hands down the most destructive drug known to mankind, and that too many states archaic laws help turn bars from a social gathering place to pits of despair…I also see alcohol as an equalizer, and a social lubricant. When used responsibly by responsible people, as with all drugs, there can be a certain magic. And there’s a certain leveling when people are at the barstool- far different from the superior/supplicant at the church.
And while like all sterotypes…it is ultimately wrong, it also, like all steretypes, has a basis in truth- no matter how outdated. That religion, all too often- drags us backwards rather then forward. IS too often based in fear. And ultimately, will dra us backwards rather then forward.
So I will continue to use, as a factor, a places church to bar ratio, and its views on intoxicating substances in general. It’s served me well over several decades….