Words Matter

Inevitably, a response like this meme arrives:
IslamReligTerr
Up until the word “terrorism” this was a great meme. The part about privilege is spot on.
Introducing terrorism is a different question; a distraction; a false equivalency.
The belief this final sentence asks you to adopt is that ideas crammed into your head do not matter. The words you hear and study, especially those injected before you are 18, have no bearing at all on what you believe or what actions you choose to take.

This position suggests that advertising is a waste of time, and yet there is a multi-billion dollar ad industry. Propaganda is a waste of time, yet we have multi-billionaires funding campaign ads, and we have other multi-billionaires trying to own and monopolize the messages being sent to us via FOX news, Washington Post, etc.

If words didn’t matter, people wouldn’t invest so much in them.  This meme’s final sentence tries to tell us that words can’t affect us; cause and effect are 100% suspended when it comes to words. yet every religion is built around its text.

The literal text of every Abrahamic religion contains injunctions that (if followed faithfully, in full belief) lead to specific, horrendous acts.
The texts justify them. Period. These words and beliefs are planted early and often. They are cultivated as “buttons” to push in the future, supported, watered and fertilized by assertion that the Scripture is inerrant truth.
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While most believers can compartmentalize and rationalize NOT taking a literal view of their faith, a zealous fringe (or young, impressionable, desperate fringe) can and will act as if God has instructed them directly, with full rationalized support coming from the texts. They do it because they believe the words of the text and the manipulations of the teachers telling them it is the right thing to do.

If Religion doesn’t cause terrorism, then excise the verses advocating it from every faith’s holy scripture! I’ll believe the proposition when it’s been tested — when violence, misogyny, and hatred of “other” is no longer advertised in the “holy” text.

Words matter. In the beginning was the word.

Amen. Rant is over, go in peace to love and serve your fellow humans.

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