Sarah Palin is to Liberals what Satan is to Christianity
by Debra DeAngelo
So, I’m watching my favorite soap opera, “Countdown with Keith Olbermann,” and once again, the top story is Sarah Palin. Keith and his guest lay into her in gleeful disgust, and I have to wonder yet again, “Why is this woman still in the news?”
I happen to wonder this out loud, and my Libertarian-leaning husbie retorts, “Because the Liberals worship her more than the Conservatives!” Now, given the amount of airtime Palin enjoys on the unapologetically Left-leaning MSNBC channel, it’s a valid point. The Liberal Left has a peculiar fascination with everything Palin says and does. As if she had relevance or something, beyond her purely celebrity status.
Ah. There’s the reason. The news networks can no longer distinguish between celebrity foibles and news, which is why we know all about Lyndsay Lohan’s fingernail and Mel Gibson’s bat-crap crazy rantings.
Sarah’s a celebrity of the Paris Hilton genre – grotesquely famous for no detectable reason, and lacking any particular talent or skill other than cultivating her own celebrity. I don’t really have any use for either of them. Like Paris, Sarah has no relevance to anything I care about. I mean, now that it’s clearly obvious that her chances of becoming president are about the same as mine.
I continue enjoying my nightly soap opera, with its cast of heroes and villains, and tantalizing cliffhanger plots, but my husbie couldn’t take another moment.
“They’re nothing but a bunch of fundamentalists,” he snipes, gets up, and retreats to his computer.
Fundamentalists – true that. And I’m not fond of fundamentalists of any type, whether political, religious, or otherwise, because the hallmark of fundamentalism is black and white thinking. I find the wide gray area of thought much more comfortable.
Anyway. Our villain’s on the screen now – boo hiss!!! – and she’s spewing her folksy, screechy chit-chat in her signature red leather jacket, and meanwhile the crowd goes wild, and thoughts of fundamentalism drift through my head, which branch into thoughts of televangelists and their dim-witted minions. The similarities between political and religious fundamentalism start aligning in my mind and suddenly, epiphany smacks me right in my prefrontal cortex: Oh, my pitchforks and pointy tails, Sarah Palin really IS the devil! No WONDER she’s the Liberal Left’s rock star! Without Sarah, Liberals won’t know who they are! They won’t have a common enemy to unite them amidst their confusion and fear!
Think about it: Is this not the exact purpose Satan serves for the Christian church? He is the spiritual “fashion don’t” for Christians — the symbol of everything they aren’t, and everything they fear. Whether you’re a Presbyterian or a Pentecostal, Satan is the common enemy that unites all of Christianity. Disagree on baptism and communion if you will, but Praise the Lord, we all hate Satan!
Same with Palin. The Left was united behind Barack Obama, who’s had a rather ho-hum presidency thus far. Despite all his promise, he can’t conquer the corporate machine that runs our political system. In the end, he’s just a man, not a messiah. The wind is coming out of the hope and change sails. Liberals are nervous and confused… questioning their faith: “If Obama can’t get this ship back on course, maybe no one can. If we can’t believe in Obama, what then? Oh, woe is us, all is forsaken. But wait – there’s Sarah Palin! We ALL hate her! At least we’re still sure of that! We still know who we are! All hope (and change) is not lost!”
See what I mean? Fundamentalism is fundamentalism is fundamentalism. Black and white, good and bad. No need to think, just plunk things down in the correct category. Seen one demon, seen them all, whether it’s on TV or at church. In the end, all pretty damn boring, if you ask me.
However, I thoroughly enjoy the delightful serendipity that with only a few accessories, Sarah’s costume will be just like Satan’s. She’s already got that red thing going on – all she needs are some devil horns, a pointy tail, a red bustier and matching gauntlets, and maybe some thigh-high red leather stiletto boots and… DAY-UM, she looks pretty hot, doesn’t she.
(Oh, Debra, don’t go there! Back right out of that thought now, before she morphs into Catherine Zeta Jones! Think about Elena Kagan… Elena Kagan… Elena Kagan… OK. Back in safe territory.)
So. Fundamentalism. Regardless of type, it must have an enemy. A common enemy is the battery that charges up the faithful. It brightens and sharpens that black and white thinking, and fires up the masses so they’ll open their wallets and give freely to help fight The Enemy, whether it’s the Sunday morning collection plate or a debit card on the DNC website. And when you distill fundamentalism down to its core, that’s what you find: a steady flow of money.
Money is the blood of fundamentalist organizations, whether the corner church or the re-elect Senator Slimy campaign. And an effective way to squeeze money from the faithful is by providing an evil villain to unite them in fear and hatred. Without The Enemy, fundamentalism can’t survive.
There you have it. Sarah and Satan. Sexy, rebellious caricatures of evil. Political/spiritual shock collars, spiritual “fashion don’ts,” at whom to point to help us keep our fuzzy self-images in focus, so we’ll know who we aren’t. The Devil and the Diva. Both reasons why I point to fundamentalism – all of it – and tell myself, “That’s what I’m not.”