The hidden dark side of the religious right

Whenever sexual education comes up as a topic at all, conservative Christians are always on the offensive. They try and make the case that teaching sexual education to younger ages might be a gateway to paedophilia and underage sex, when in actuality, it might have the opposite effect. Whenever the Catholic church was accused of covering up allegations of paedophilia targeted at their priests, however, conservative Christians remained silent.

Doesn’t that sound odd to you at all? Call me crazy, but I think that there’s something extremely odd about the way conservative Christians act when it comes to sex.

For example, when a Chicago school district implemented a mandatory sex education program at each grade level, the conservative Christian media outlets panicked, and began spreading the myth that the district was practising paedophilia. In actuality, this program was implemented in order to help children learn the difference between a “good touch” and a “bad touch”, and hopefully identify and report actual perverts. Let me ask a question: why on Earth would right-wing Christians have a problem with it?

At this point, it should be obvious. The conservative Christians must obviously be raging perverts. But what if this is something bigger. What if the Christian church is basically a cabal of paedophiles who actively preserve the status quo in order to ensure that they can still indulge their sick pleasures?

It sounds crazy, but at the same time, it makes perfect sense. Why else would conservative Christians want to fight a program designed to help children identify potential paedophiles? The only reason they would try and actively fight it is if it means they get caught, and singled out as perverts, which would obviously bring them unimaginable shame.

The tabloids also have a role in all this. Many tabloids take up a conservative (or at least populist) attitude towards a number of issue, but they seem to be obsessed with paedophiles. Whenever the tabloids focus on the paedophiles, they do two things:

  1. They report child abuse cases in suspiciously graphic detail.
  2. They implicitly make child abuse cases worse.

See, the tabloids create such a hysteria over child abuse that not only does it cause existing predators to further intimidate their victims (due to them becoming more fearful of being caught), but it may also arouse disturbing sexual thoughts in people who may otherwise not have thought of it. This, of course, causes more child abuses cases, which means more stories for the tabloids, which gives the tabloids more money.

Another thing that always sounded odd to me was the fact that conservatives and the tabloids seemed to be fixated on child pornography. In fact, David Cameron’s porn filter plan was based on the Daily Mail’s constant panicking over porn, and it’s alleged effect on our children.

Here’s another twist. The Daily Mail seems to be very defensive of Christianity, and their editors are ardent supporters of the Conservative party. Therefore, isn’t it possible that the Daily Mail editors are basically sick perverts with twisted imaginations? I think they are. After all, why else would they aggressively demand that porn basically be wiped out, while simultaneously fixating on anything to do with sex?

What’s happening here is that the tabloids are causing more division over sex, and planting sick thoughts into their readers in order to generate more stories to make more money.

What does this have to do with religion? Well, only the fact that the church doesn’t seem to be doing anything about it. If the conservative Christian church isn’t doing anything about this then either they have no idea of the whole thing, or they know exactly what’s going on, but keep quiet in order to preserve the status quo

I don’t claim to know if there can be any real explanation for this odd behaviour, but one thing is clear: something is very wrong. There are people out there with sick thoughts and sick intentions, and the right-wing politicians in Britain and America seem to be on their side.

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Flesh-eating spiders of popular myth

A few days ago, I saw a headline on The Daily Star which reads “Flesh-eating spiders coming to a house near you”. Immediately, this reminds me of all those other panicky reports that killer bees were headed to our country soon.

In fact, both those stories have at least one thing in common – they are both designed to scare the reader, and therefore distract the reader from the issues at the heart of our society.

The media loves fear-inducing cock-and-bull stories like the “flesh-eating spiders” headline because they keep people in a state of panic, which keeps them from engaging in deep thought.

I’ve already established several times that the media is basically an enforcer of the status quo. Because of this position, the people in the media don’t want you to be able to think for yourself, because it means that you’ll be questioning the system and everything it stands for.

Even though the noble false widow (the spider mentioned on the news) has been introduced to England from its native Canary Islands, there is no real evidence to suggest that they could spread throughout the entire nation. Besides, they’ve been living in England since the 1870’s, and no sensationalist reports about false widow attacks have surfaced on the papers until at least 2006.

Through all of this, I’m trying to show that the tabloids are just exaggerating things in order to sell a story and keep us afraid of the world. The sooner we learn to ignore the tabloids, the better our perspective of things will be (and I know I’ve been saying this for quite a long time).

The online porn bogeyman

In recent times, internet safety is more important than ever. Over the past five years, I’ve been privy to the mass paranoia over online safety. This is why didn’t log onto Facebook for a few years, because back when I was 14, I was actually stupid enough to fall for it.

But privacy isn’t the issue now. The issue I want to talk about right now is the media’s relationship with online porn.

the daily mail

100% Pure-grade bullsh*t from The Daily Mail.

Whenever the issue of internet safety is brought up, there’s always at least one person who talks about porn, mainly because that’s basically what the media likes to bring up whenever internet safety is the issue.

The tabloids love porn, mainly because it gives them fuel for a “moral panic” which they can use to sell papers. Whenever child porn hits the news, tabloids like the Daily Mail quickly resort to blaming all porn. However, the tabloids are also very hypocritical when it comes to porn, because they show those Page 3 girls almost all the time.

The Daily Mail in particular seems to be completely dependant on the whole “porn panic”, and the farcical idea that more and more children are looking at porn (which is completely false), and that they’re being turned into “paedo rapists” (for which there is no evidence).

This idea has somehow been accepted by anyone talking about internet safety, and porn is just being dragged along just because it suits the moral panic.

Porn isn’t the problem. The problem is that some people are being completely stupid with it, mainly with regards to kids. If porn does “turns kids into sex attackers”, or “makes teen boys see girls as sex objects”, as the Daily Mail has claimed, then we have nothing to blame except for the parents.

The truth is that there are actually parents who are so low that whenever their kids see porn, they try to get porn banned in order to compensate for the fact that they didn’t even bother to keep their kids away from it, or put what they saw into context. If anyone’s worried about online porn, it’s more likely to be about whether or not you can contract a computer virus from that site.

Sadly, even if porn doesn’t get banned, or Cameron’s porn filter plans are stopped, then the moral panic will never go away. Why? Because the media uses the moral panic to distract people from the real issues. That’s why in the title of this post I referred to online porn as a “bogeyman”, because it’s a fake threat used by the media to distract the masses.

I’m very certain that most people aren’t raging porn addicts, and I’m also sure that most kids haven’t even heard of it. Therefore, porn is not an internet safety issue because most people aren’t exactly stupid with it. The real solution is to stop putting so much of a stigma on porn. After all, for some people, it’s the only thing close to sex they’ll ever have.

If not, then maybe a better solution is to not let the sensationalist news reports get to our heads.

The media should stop putting certain people on a pedestal

to put on a pedestal

“To put on a pedestal” means having really high expectations for someone or something, and tricking yourself into believing that they’ll always meet those expectations, even if they may really be less than perfect. If I told you that this is what the media does with disabled people all the time, at best, you might not believe me. At worst, you’d be offended by that idea entirely.

To explain this, I’ll refer to the case of Oscar Pistorius.

Yesterday’s trial of Oscar Pistorius has been postponed until the August 19th. That may be the case, but that isn’t stopping me from talking about the core of why this is a big deal in the first place.

As soon I saw the tabloids scream “Blade Runner” in recent times, I wondered what the big deal was. But then it hit me, Oscar Pistorius was famous for being the first double-leg amputee to run alongside able-bodied people during the last Olympics.

Naturally, the media did to him what they do to all disabled people who get our attention: create the fictitious image that he and all other disabled people are perfect just because they overcame the odds. That stereotype got shattered as soon as Pistorius fired his gun at his girlfriend four months ago.

I believe that the only reason Pistorius’ murder charge has been so overblown by the tabloids is because it basically ruined all their efforts to make him their saint. It’s the very same process as all celebrities and politicians.

  1. They build them up as “perfect” idols
  2. Then they watch as the public eat it up like candy
  3. They badger the celebrities in order to find even the slightest flaws
  4. Then they exaggerate those flaws, and pass it off as news
  5. They watch as their specially made false idols fall from grace

It’s a process that goes back generations. I’m not saying that Oscar Pistorius ever planned on running for president of South Africa, but my point remains valid.

Now I think I should move on to my main point. The mainstream media won’t stop pushing the same message of equality on everyone, but somehow, they treat the disabled better than everyone else just because their disabled. I have nothing against the disabled, but I have everything against the tabloids, and double standards.

How can one stand for equality, but lift someone above everyone else? It’s the fundamental paradox which is the reason why I’ve written this post. Besides, the media doesn’t give fat people any fair treatment at all.

Whatever you believe, the tabloids are still going to reap some mighty profits by sensationalising the whole issue, all because we’re too gullible to see past the hype.

The culture of fame (or infamy)

Have you ever heard of people who have no talent, no real accomplishments, and no value in society at all who just suddenly get famous? These people end up appearing in magazines, on the front page of tabloids, and often get some spotlight on TV. Does this sound familiar? This happens a lot in our celebrity-centered culture. Hell, it’s gotten so big, that these two idiots can be famous.

how to be famous

I move that all copies of this book be burned.

In today’s society, anyone can become famous for no apparent reason. Heidi Montag and Spencer Pratt (as shown on the example picture) were both actors of the MTV show The Hills. They became the center of tabloid attention, I heard, after a sex tape was released to the press.

If this is how people become famous, then I really have a serious moral problem with celebrity culture, because it exalts stupid, sex-crazed idiots who do nothing for society, while ignoring genuinely talented role models, and people who contribute to society for the better. Not to mention that the book only “teaches” who to be a “tabloid fixture”, and how to look like Snoop Dog’s wet dream. Other than that, it does pretty much nothing other than offer a glimpse into how shameful tabloid culture is.

That’s not the only problem with the mainstream media. It arbitrarily reports “missing persons” cases involving missing white girls with extreme hyperbole, based on nothing but pure sex. This is those in the journalism business refer to as “missing white woman syndrome”, where the media focuses on missing “affluent white woman”, painting them as “damsels in distress”, while painting the abductors/killers like the stars of horror movies. Speaking of that, the media also has a nasty habit of making abductors, rapists, drug smugglers, murderers, and even pedophiles into complete celebrities (or, in this case, targets of hatred from the masses) as soon as they’re reported on the news.

Before anyone gets attention from the media, they’re just ordinary people, with ordinary demons. Then the media gets a hold of their stories, and their personalities become exaggerated. The nicer ones of us get treated as “heroes”, even if they’ve never saved a life. The sex-crazed nobodies who did nothing at all get attention solely because it may as well be pornography. The scum of society, however, don’t even get left alone by the media, even after tragic incidents have been resolved. Rather than letting the local authorities contain the scum of society quietly, the tabloids overblow these incidents with so much hyperbole, that each time, they make it sound like it’s not just another murder, when it really is just another murder.

In the UK, we had a rather unfortunate incident involving The Wright Stuff host, Matthew Wright, who joked about a particular murder (which I won’t name), complete with a Scottish impersonation of Taggart. The media made such a fuss about it, that when Wright “apologized”, he told those that complained to Ofcom to “grow up”. Strangely, I actually agree with what Wright said. Why? I didn’t like the joke, nor do I watch his show, but I believe he should have the right to free speech, as everyone should.

The fact that we make such a big deal out of “offensive remarks” which are so obviously jokes, I believe, says something awful about the UK. It says to me that Britain does not believe in free speech. Britain apparently doesn’t care about our free speech being suppressed as long as everybody’s being nice to each other and nobody’s offended.

Well, I think I went off topic for a brief moment, but I think I made my point. We shouldn’t defend a culture that turns scum into stars. We shouldn’t defend a culture that just looks aimlessly for stories that sell papers. With decades of us being saturated with this, I’d have thought we got sick of it. But apparently, sex and violence sell like hot cakes. That maybe someone else’s cup of tea, but not mine.

What happened to journalism?

howard beale

This is mass MADNESS!

Journalism used to be about analyzing and questioning the world around us. Journalists used to expose racist incidents, even in a time when racism was the norm. They used to question the reasons for war, even in the midst of the Vietnam war. They used to expose abuse of power committed by politicians, ultimately leading up to the Watergate scandal.

In other words, journalists used to be noble, up until the point where corporations decided to take control.

The Reagan government saw many media outlets get taken over by right-wing corporations like Capital City Communications, which famously took over ABC in 1985. Later on, in 1987, the American media’s obligation to be fair and balanced, the Fairness Doctrine, was repealed by Ronald Reagan, allowing outright propaganda to roam the American airwaves, and political discourse over there has devolved since then.

In the British media, journalism has decayed since the tabloids became popular, and we’ve let society become corrupted by the influence of the red top tabloids. We placed our trust in those sleazy tabloids as they corrupted journalism with the slime of populist tripe, and their still making money even after they’ve been found guilty of the most immoral conduct.

My point is, journalism and big business are now locked into a horrid relationship. Now, the news media won’t report the truth at all unless it sells. News outlets won’t even report anything that threatens the interests of their corporate owners. And nowadays, it’s more about exploiting stupidity, rather than opening our eyes.

You can’t help but think that something’s wrong if journalism is in the sorry state that’s in. I suppose we’re getting stupider as the years go by. Because of that, we let the influence of big media corporations cloud our judgment, and now we don’t give a damn about truth or bravery in the media, to the point that the most popular news stories are next big celebrity sex scandals.

This post is shorter than usual because I really couldn’t come up with much to write about, as this was supposed to be a rant.

5 reasons why we must despise Big Brother

big brother

The eye of evil.

On Thursday, the new series of Celebrity Big Brother came out to disgrace culture once again. Honestly, I’ve never seen Big Brother, but I’ve always hated it. It represents the devolution of our culture as a whole, especially since Big Brother is what started the popularity of reality TV during the 2000’s.

The show itself gets its name from the supreme dictator in George Orwell’s novel Nineteen-Eighty-Four, which coined the phrase “Big Brother is watching”. The book itself was a warning against totalitarian government and state surviellance. Call me crazy, but I think the makers of Big Brother have actually, in part, fulfilled the prophecy made by many speculative science fiction writers: that we as a people will be swallowed and stupefied by a tidal wave of lowest common denominator entertainment.

I think I’m the only one who’s going to say it: we need to take Big Brother off the air. Why? Because it’s bad for us. Why? I’m about to tell you why.

  1. It’s full of untalented, unfamous wannabes who only want their 15 minutes of fame – Allow me to make this point clear. Nobody who has ever appeared on Big Brother has done anything to earn our respect. Not Jade Goody, not Katie Price, not whoever the obligatory sex-crazed freak was, and certainly not Davina McCall, the presenter of the show. In fact, Davina McCall’s entire career has been kept going solely because of her fame presenting Big Brother.
  2. It encourages voyeurism – The central theme of the show is that a bunch of idiots who nobody cares about are in a house, and their actions are spied on throughout the whole run of the show. Call me crazy, but this is every government’s wet dream. If the government could do something like that, and for the whole of society, their authority could be unstoppable, and that simply isn’t morally right. Also, it implicitly spreads the idea that voyeurism is acceptable, when it’s not. Speaking of morality…
  3. It sets a bad example to society – Everyone on Big Brother just wants an excuse to be some kind of depraved, sex-crazed freak. They just want to make themselves, and their country look horrible on national television. It tries to tell us that having orgies non-stop while being monitored by a camera is somehow acceptable, that lots of makeup and fake tan is somehow attractive. Guess what? None of that is true! Imagine what Big Brother must be doing to the young generation. It’s probably distorting their view of the world right now.
  4. It’s fuel for the tabloids – The aforementioned depraved sex acts are a vehicle for no good wannabes like the Big Brother contestants to be famous. Why? Because the tabloid editors are perverts. They’ll look for any excuse possible to run smut on their newspapers, and with no regard for who’s reading it. Naturally, Big Brother is a gold mine for tabloids like the Daily Star to put the sleazy goings on of the Big Brother house on the front page, instead of potentially more important news stories that make us think. All the while, they use this to say that this sort of behaviour is wrong, but they’re being hypocritical because they revel in it all the time.
  5. Since Channel 5 brought Big Brother back, all of it has gotten worse – Ever since it started in the year 2000, Channel 4 was swimming in ratings, at the cost of whatever soul it had. But then, 10 years after it started, it finally came off the air. We thought that it would be the end, until Channel 5 ruined everything by re-airing it in 2011. From there on out, it could only get worse. Channel 5 was always a crappy channel, unfailingly setting a bad example of British TV. But when they aired Big Brother, they sealed the deal for their reputation of the lowest common denominator channel of Britain. The only question is, how much worse could it get?

Big Brother also has the side effect of ripping away all the credibility that any genuine celebrity may have had. One infamous example of this degradation is Coolio, a rapper who became famous when he made the 1995 single “Gangsta’s Paradise”. As soon as he entered the Big Brother house, he lost all his street cred, and now everyone hates him.

Isn’t this the kind of culture we should be despising? According to our self-imposed “morality”, this kind of thing should be wrong. But the continued survival of Big Brother says something horrible about our culture, and our moral values. What exactly does it say about our society? It says that we are actually hypocrites when it comes to morality, that we don’t even care that our culture is going straight to hell.

We as human beings should demand quality TV. I think we should campaign to get Big Brother off the air, this time for good, because nobody deserves to be subjected to the horror of any reality TV show. Think about it this way, if we get rid of Big Brother, it will send a message that we don’t approve of this kind of culture, and that the big corporations who shove it down our throats should just pack up their bags, and stop destroying our culture.