God Must Love Football

Copyright © by Len Holman, 10/25/12


  Some Texas cheerleaders took to the football field last month with banners displaying Bible verses and, predictably, all hell broke loose. The battleground was Kountze, Texas (why does this stuff always seem to happen in Texas?), where the school district prohibited the cheerleaders from displaying the banners.  This edict was based on the Supreme Court case, Santa Fe Independent School District v. Doe, which established that that prayers led by students at football games were unconstitutional.  Inevitably, 15 middle and high school cheerleaders and their parents sued the district on the grounds that the district violated their free speech rights. 

  The governor of Texas, Rick Perry (remember him?), and his attorney general, said the district’s actions were improper and that the banners were protected by state law.  That law, signed by Perry in 2007, is called, incredibly, the Religious Viewpoint Antidiscrimination Act.  However, the only viewpoint it appears to want to protect is a Christian one.  It isn’t clear to me that God loves football that much—or cheerleaders, for that matter.  When the governor and attorney general made their remarks, they were seated before pictures of a banner reading, “If God is for us, who can be against us?”  Perhaps they were not paying attention to the sentiments expressed on that sign, for if there IS a God, and HE (She, They?) is for Texas, then why in the world should anyone worry about some puny injunction from a secular court?  I’m pretty sure God can fix a parking ticket, and I’m equally sure He can arrange for those Friday Night Lights to continue to shine on scripture inscribed on banners at football games. 

  There is now the question of whether the court ordered injunction will be upheld, lifted or what.  When asked if the banners had contained verses from the Qur’an or some other religion, there would be similar outrage and anger, the governor replied, “I don’t know whether you’d be here, I would be. The point is, as I said in my remarks, this is all about religion.”  No, governor, it’s all about ONE religion, since the chances of any cheerleaders in any school district in Texas waving banners with Quranic verses is about the same as Michele Bachman and her husband putting up an Obama statue in front of their “Pray Gay  Away” clinic.  Aside from the naked favoritism displayed, there is the distinct odor of fear. 

  It seems that hard-line Christians are in mighty terror that they will be discriminated against and forced to pray at a Sikh temple.  If Christians fear discrimination, by whom will they be oppressed?  By whom are they currently being oppressed?  The President is a Christian (at least, that’s what he says), as are most of the people in our government, as are most of the movers and shakers in America, including those smiling folks who sell weapons at gun shows.  There are no Wiccans in Obama’s cabinet, nor Jains in the Congress or on the Supreme Court.  If Christians fear, then they are dangerous.  Hiding under the wool of sheep lurk those around former Gov. Romney, who believe that decadence is rampant and the LGBT community had better get back in that closet.  They believe they wield the sword of the Almighty, so Iran better BUILD a closet, preferably one that can withstand a monstrous military strike.  They believe that the only true religion is under siege and the God will judge them harshly if they don’t protect His faith, the one He gave them through His prophets in the government.  They believe the constitution (God’s instrument, after all) is in danger if Obama gets re-elected, for he will nominate some liberal—or maybe TWO liberals, and there goes the neighborhood.  They believe that if Adam and Eve had a car in the Garden, they wouldn’t have paid over four dollars a gallon for gas, so we need to drill for oil everywhere, all the time, even if it means flooding a few aquifers with oil, or contaminating the fruited plain with fracking sludge. 

  Theses intolerant and fearful Christians will return us to a better time, when women stayed in the parlor whilst the menfolk talked about serious things in the study; when America bestrode the world, assisting our brown and yellow brothers, in order to keep our country great.  If this means some war, some destruction, well…remember the Canaanites.  If they must ask God to stop the sun so Iran’s walls may be breached, so be it.  Christians of the Right seem to live in deadly fear that any backsliding from American
Exceptionalism will result in that deadly rain which fell on Sodom and Gomorrah.  They fear for a lack of absolute power over others of some other—non-true—belief.  All this symbolized by some petty incident before a football game in some very small Texas town.  I wonder if God—in His heart of hearts—is a Cowboys fan?


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