mindGrazing

chewing ideas down to stubble, then moving on…

Can’t We All Just Get Along?

Posted by Jason on December 11, 2008

Here’s a perfect example of religious antagonism that just completely pisses me off:

The Ubiquitous Darwin Fish

The Ubiquitous Darwin Fish

Now must of us know that the original Ichthys or “Jesus Fish” was a Christian symbol for various different reasons, depending on which scholar you ask, and my beef is not about who had which symbol first, etc. This is just the epitome of how people go out of their way to antagonize the “other side,” whichever side that may be. Darwinists or anti-Creationists or Anti-Christians or whatever you would like to call them have distorted a well-known symbol in order to use that for their own message. This is, in effect, a mockery of the Christian symbol and I’m sure it offends a lot of people.

That said, I think that the Darwin fish-thingy is incredibly clever. However, I feel that when it’s displayed on a car or any other public place, it becomes a statement. Why make public statements that mock and antagonize people? The problem is not just with evolutionists or atheists or democrats or any one group. Do I really care that some jackass in his little Mazda Miata thinks he’s intellectually superior to me because I happen to be Christian and he has a little symbol that says his beliefs are more “evolved” than mine? Of course not…

What pisses me off is that people of all creeds and walks of life feel like they absolutely must stick it to the other side whenever possible. Why waste your life with such a petty and stupid agenda? Is it really worth all the stress and anger you create when you write a 2000-word blog post that really exposes the whack-job right wingers or the commy-pinko liberals? Oooo… it’s as if I never knew that Republicans were closer to Fascists and that Democrats were kind of like Socialists. Cmon people!!!

So let’s get real: Stop trying to disprove everything by using the same old rhetoric that everyone’s heard before. If you believe differently than someone else, who cares? Maybe talk to that person to get a better understanding of what they think, but then move on! Write about something that generally interests you; not something that makes you feel smart. If you don’t know anything about anything, then write a blog that posts a bunch of questions about stuff you don’t know. There’s plenty of people out there in the blogosphere that will give you their opinions…

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11 Responses to “Can’t We All Just Get Along?”

  1. Schevus said

    “However, I feel that when it’s displayed on a car or any other public place, it becomes a statement.” This is very true, but to look at it from the other side it is just as much a statement to atheists when someone displays the Jesus fish, cross, etc. on their car. Granted, I tend to agree with you that subverting and mocking a religious symbol is disrespectful.

    It is certainly a statement when you put anything on your car. Since working at my latest job, I have periodically gotten various pamphlets put under my windshield wiper telling me that I’m a bad person and that I should repent to Jesus. At first I assumed this was large scale pamphleting, but the last time it happened I looked around and I was the only car with it. I’m 90% sure I’ve been getting these because I have an Obama bumper sticker on my car because another co-worker of mine with a sticker also got one once. I can only speculate that some overly religious person feels my / Obama’s views on abortion are a heinous sin.

    I was pretty amused by the latest one, because the front side was fashioned to look like a $100,000 bill. Is that really necessary to spread a message? It’s not like I’m going to leave it under my wiper if it’s not something I normally wouldn’t pick up.

    – Schev

  2. Ahh, the Darwin fish. I have a few reasons for supporting the use of the Darwin fish.
    My major reason is because I do not believe religious views inherently deserve respect, it must be earned. If you were to tell me that you think the Earth is a flat 6000 year old disc, I’m very likely to crack a joke at your expense. I don’t think Christianity, or any of the other large religions, have earned my respect, save Buddhism.
    My second reason is pretty much what Schev said about religious prosthyletizing. If you’re going to leave pamplets on my door or in public restrooms, the least I can do is put something on my own car to let you know I’m not interested.
    Lastly, I get cut off by minivans with Jesus fish more than any other vehicle. So it’s my own little of venting.

    If there were a more prevalent symbol for atheism I might use it instead of the mocking amphibian, but there isn’t.

  3. Jason said

    Schev. it’s amazing how a seemingly innocuous and legit campaign sticker can arouse the religious and hateful passion within some people. I think it’s silly how people think we’re going to hell because we voted for Obama. I think you’re also correct that displaying any other religious symbol can be offensive and antagonistic to others. I hadn’t thought of that in this situation.

    SisFrag, I agree that a large amount of Christians are more interested in swelling their ranks rather than being good people, and that’s frustrating and counter to what’s being preached. I disagree that beliefs don’t inherently deserve respect. Even though they may be completely bass-ackwards and incredibly stupid, I must respect beliefs as part of my basic respect for individuals that hold those beliefs. Even if a person does not respect something, does that mean that person should be directly antagonistic to that?

    I’m more of the live and let live philosophy…

  4. layrenewal said

    It does all seem a bit petty no matter which way you go. I’ve seen a larger Christian fish symbol “eating” the smaller Darwin fish. While I applaud creativity, we’re getting silly…

    Speaking of being silly, Sis Frag, do you really keep track? :o)

  5. I don’t get cut off that often, and I always notice if they have one on their car. 😛

  6. Wifey said

    my very first car i bought (used) had a fish on it from the previous owners (which my parents were STOKED about). i drove it around for a bit, trying as hard as i could to resist taking if off (i was going through my “questioning” stage then). and i remember thinking, “man, OC drivers are jerks!” then finally, i just couldn’t do it any longer–not because of the bad drivers, but because i don’t like to walk around with a bullhorn–so i ripped it off (which my parents WEREN’T too stoked about). and you know, it didn’t seem like a dealt with as many of rude drivers anymore. now, it could totally be psychological, or maybe my driving improved with time (as some of you male drivers will probably say 😉 ). regardless, i was glad because i will do anything to deal with as few rude drivers as possible.

    and while i myself am a Christian, i too can’t help but scoff at the drivers who cut me off and have a “Jesus is Lord of my soul” (or something to that effect) bumper sticker on their cars. on the other hand, we all are, after all, human. and while we may strive to be better people MOST of our lives, our natural instincts are to act out in human tendency. i try to not be a rude driver: not because I’m Christian, but because i don’t want to get in an accident and, well, i’m a nice person. i try not to be a speedster on the road: not because I’m a Christian, but because i’m trying to save gas, money, and the environment.

  7. Jason said

    You know, if people were really being spiteful, they could put a Darwin fish mounting the back of a Jesus fish to make it look like dogs humping. I would give mad creativity points if I saw that. Yes, it’s Friday… No my brain is not functioning well…

  8. Wifey said

    yeeeeesss! that’s the best idea yet!

    but of course i admire every single idea you come up with *cough cough* 😉

  9. Schevus said

    Wow..that’s more than a little disturbing. I think the likelihood of your car getting keyed would go up exponentially if you actually did that!

  10. rogerhollander said

    The Darwin appropriation of the Christian Fish Symbol (Iexthus)is not intended to insult. I see it as a defense against highly politicized Christian bigots who try to shove their particular brand of religion down our throats, and would love for the US to be a theocratic state. In particular, the Darwin take-off is a clever parody in reaction to the anti-intellectual fundamentalist Christians who want to get their religious beliefs into the education system thorugh the back door, posing “intelligent design” (which is a front for Creationism) as legitimate science that should be taught alongside evolution in science courses. Any scientist, who doesnt’t happen to be an evangelical fundamentalist Christian, will tell you that this is pure bunk. Those of us who appreciate such parody see ourselves as being defensive, not offensive, defending the right to a secular multi-cultural state as opposed to a Christian Theocracy run by Western styled Ayatollahs and Sarah Palins. The lastest and most disgusting example of Christians working to impose their values on others in denial of their civil rights is the Mormon multi-million dollar campaign in California that led to the adoption of Propostion 8, which whould surely have other wise been defeated. These are slimy, dissimilating, bigoted folk, dangerous to a democratic society. If you cannot see the humor in the Darwin fish and only see it as aggressive and in bad taste, then you are sorely missing the point.

  11. Jason said

    Roger, that’s quite a soapbox you have there. A fish with legs is defense against Christian oppression? I’m curious as to how you feel that the fish symbol attacks any atheist/agnostic position? I agree with Schevus’ earlier comment that I had not thought of before, in which many religious symbols might be offensive to those of any other religion. However, the Jesus fish makes no reference to any of your religious or anti-religious symbols that I’m aware of. Maybe if you take any representation of the natural world, such as a fish, as “owned” by Darwinists, then the cross (made of wood from trees), the Jewish star, and the Muslim crescent moon must also be direct attacks on you. Why pick the fish as your banner under which you muster a defense? I’m not seeing the fish with legs as a clever “defense” as you claim.

    I merely used the example of the fish as an example of direct antagonism, be it religious or political, that occurs both in the blogosphere and the real world. If you would have read my entire post, you would have seen that I think the Darwin fish is terribly clever and that I can “appreciate such parody” quite readily. Furthermore, you seem to have me pegged as one of these fundamentalists against which you rage. Whatever your beliefs about me and my “message” may be, you’ll find no fundamentalist Christians here to argue with.

    Thank you for supporting my argument that some people will take any opportunity possible to stick it to their opponents… the only opponents I have are those who are blinded by hate and can’t respond rationally and peacefully to a blog posting.

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