Wednesday, May 04, 2005

Whited Sepulchers

One of the reasons the Bible has prevailed and is still quoted--whether one believes in it as the revealed word of God or not--is because the prose of the King James translation is beautiful and poetic. For instance, in Matthew 23-27, Jesus says: “Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye are like unto whited sepulchres, which indeed appear beautiful outward, but are within full of dead [men's] bones, and of all uncleanness.” The translation of the Bible that I usually seek out is The New Oxford Annotated Bible, but it uses the word “tombs” rather than “sepulchers”, which doesn't have the same portent or rhythm. Hypocrites. Whited sepulchers. My mind jumps to the Bush Brothers living in their white mansions. Florida Governor Jeb Bush has dropped his opposition to the abortion sought by a 13-year-old runaway. This morning, an article by Abby Goodnough in the NYT (“Florida Halts Fight to Bar Girl's Abortion”) has a tagline quote from Governor Bush. He said the Department of Children and Families was right “to make sure that this was reviewed carefully. We are talking about the loss of a life.” This example of life being sacred to the Bush Brothers was not used for political gain like the Florida Schiavo travesty. And the reason is because politically savvy Brother Jeb got wise to the polls that most of the people in the US don't buy the Bush “culture of life” bullshit. The Guv is not one to stand up for principles unless the stand feathers his nest. But life is life, right? If a zygote the size of a grain of rice has the right to the full protection of the US govrernment, then a fully-grown person has the right to protection also, right? Wrong. Florida puts criminals to death. I'm looking for a model of consistency here and I'm not finding it. If the Bush Brothers think life is sacred, how come Florida and Texas have the death penalty? And how come those laws are just fine by the life-is-sacred Bush family? It must be that purity and innocence are the criteria by which life is deemed to be sacred. But if that is so, then only the unborn deserve to live. The rest of us may as well march off to the sea right now like lemmings. And as soon as the unborn are born they are doomed by original sin. So when the unborn become born and remain unbaptized, does their right to life end? Obviously, right to life is God-given only when right-to-lifers say so. And right-to-lifers will only defend the right-to-life if it keeps the red states red. Brother Jeb is the first Guv to publicly decide the “culture of life” issue is political poison. More are sure to follow. After all, what politician in his right mind wants to live with all those bones and uncleanness?