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Masturbators and Fornicators


Arizona Daily Wildcat

By Zack Armstrong
Arizona Daily Wildcat,
January 1, 2000
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On Tuesday, I thought that it was a fluke. On Wednesday, the circle got even bigger. I did not think it was possible. The speakers and the listeners were still there on Thursday. I was too disillusioned with this absurdity to go on the Mall Friday. But maybe it was not absurd at all. The speakers are providing a service to this campus. My only question is whether or not they are aware of what that service is.

If you have yet to figure out what I'm talking about, you must have been living in a shoe box all last week. Either that or you don't make it to campus much. I'm talking about the "preachers" who positioned themselves on the Mall last week to condemn the entire student population. They were waving the Bible around their heads and yelling about how the entire student population are masturbators and fornicators. I am a masturbator, but only hoping to make that leap to the next level sometime during this millennium. My fingers are crossed.

The only masturbators I saw were the preachers themselves. They get up, day after day, and stroke their own egos by condemning everyone to hell. What's worse is they do their masturbating in front of an audience. I've done a lot of masturbating in my day...but never in front of a huge crowd of people.

The only reason they do it in front of a large number of people is for attention. It's not like they're doing any good; at least not the kind of good that they think they're doing. All they do is spew out hate and disgust. Forcing people to think of reasons to defend their lifestyles and prove the preachers wrong. Jesus didn't do that. At least, I don't think he did. I wasn't there, however, and neither was any other living person, so who's to say? Even if God did exist, would he want individuals slandering other people in his name?

Religion should not be up on a soapbox, yelling at you and calling you names. It should be warm and inviting. It should feel like a place where you are always welcome and everybody knows your name. Like Cheers, but with less comedy and more booze. Or is it less booze? I can never remember. All I know is that Sam Malone would never yell at me. Sam Malone would never condemn me to hell for fornicating because he cares. He really cares.

The Mall preachers do condemn me, and maybe that's why they're preaching on a mall in the first place. No self-respecting establishment will have them. And maybe the only reason they come to our Mall is because shopping malls have laws against people like them. Perhaps we should too. On second thought, that would violate the First Amendment, and we don't want that.

They have every right to be there and express their opinions. If they feel they need to get up; ranting and raving about how righteous and religious they are and how the rest of us are going to burn eternally in hell, they have the right.

A part of me wonders if they are religious. Maybe they are, but incredibly stupid. They would have to be if they thought that they were doing any good or making any moral changes in the people they appear to be trying to reach. Otherwise, all they are accomplishing is enraging people and pushing them to examine why what they are saying is ludicrous.

Come to think of it, I love these preachers. In a matter of hours they are able to force hundreds of people to examine their lives, their religions and pick them apart to prove those preachers wrong. They get excited about it. They all join together to stand up for themselves, and the preachers make them do it. I believe that that is their goal. It's a nicer way to go than thinking that there are a few more idiots in the world.

Zack Armstrong is a creative writing junior. He can be reached at editor@wilcat.arizona.edu

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