A Halloween bag full of Dum Dums

Bad Astronomy
By Phil Plait
Oct 31, 2009 5:00 PMNov 20, 2019 2:58 AM


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I actually am fairly tolerant of religious differences between people. Religious beliefs run very, very deep, and touch a part of us that is incredibly difficult to analyze rationally or with any sort of real self-skepticism. In general, a person's religious belief is wrapped up in their own sense of self, so attacking that religion is akin to a personal attack on them. But sometimes, just sometimes, a belief can be goofy enough -- and damaging enough -- that maybe a little bit of mockery is deserved. Certainly Pat Robertson has done so much damage in his lifetime that he gets no pass at all from me. My thoughts on him are clear and public (for example, he is "bigoted, small-minded zealot who will say anything to appeal to his base"). So it comes as no surprise that his website CBN is a haven for nonsensery at all levels. But a new post there about Halloween has even me scratching my head. Kimberly Daniels wrote a piece there about Halloween that is about as far from reality as it can be:

Halloween is a counterfeit holy day that is dedicated to celebrating the demonic trinity of : the Luciferian Spirit (the false father); the Antichrist Spirit (the false holy spirit); and the Spirit of Belial (the false son).

Really? I thought it was a time to have fun, let a little loose, eat candy, and just be silly. But I guess that's just me. ... and about 300 million other Americans. So we've established she's a goofball. Fine. But then she goes too far:

During this period demons are assigned against those who participate in the rituals and festivities. These demons are automatically drawn to the fetishes that open doors for them to come into the lives of human beings. For example, most of the candy sold during this season has been dedicated and prayed over by witches.

Attacking Halloween is one thing, but attacking the candy? Wow, it must be fun to live in an evidence-free world where you can simply assert whatever you want without proof or references or anything! Here, let me try: CBN is run by a TI 99-4a computer with buggy code that sometimes strings words together in patterns that almost make sense, if you squint and stand some distance away from them. Hey, that was easy! I think that it's not only OK, but appropriate to shake your head and be somewhat dismissive of opinions stated as fact that aren't within a glancing blow of reality. That anyone can take Robertson^* or his organization seriously is weird. The fact that they make money hand over fist is, well, not a crime since it's legal, but a real shame. And I wonder if anyone has told Ms. Daniels about the pagan origins of Christmas celebrations? Anyway, as for me, I'll happily be giving out my accursed Kit Kats and demonic Baby Ruths to all the satan-worshipping entrail-reading pagan evildoers in the neighborhood. And probably snitching the occasional hellspawned Tootsie Roll, too.

^* In case you think I am being unfair to Robertson -- if such a thing is even possible -- because someone else wrote that article, then check out this article at Americans United. Robertson deserves far more mockery than even I feel I can do on this blog.

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