"The fox knows many things, but the hedgehog knows one big thing."


Glenn Reynolds:

Barack Obama:
"Impossible to transcend."

Albert A. Gore, Jr.:
"An incontinent brute."

Rev. Jeremiah Wright:
"God damn the Gentleman Farmer."

Friends of GF's Sons:
"Is that really your dad?"

Kickball Girl:
"Keeping 'em alive until 7:45."

Hired Hand:
"I think . . . we forgot the pheasant."

I'm an
Alcoholic Yeti
in the
TTLB Ecosystem

Tuesday, September 05, 2006

They Use Forks, Don't They?

If you're looking for truly funny political, cultural or religious reporting, it's hard to beat The Guardian, and its online version, Guardian Unlimited. Of course, they don't mean to be funny, but they nonetheless succeed more often than Stephen Colbert, and he's trying. We think.

Back in June, one of their reporters was called to missionary work among the savages of darkest North Carolina, and lived to tell about his encounter with a primitive tribe of Southern Baptists, in Brouhaha in the Bible Belt:
Being in a room with 11,000 Americans who all believe in the inerrancy of the Bible is a curiously scary experience. That's the Southern Baptists, the fundamentalist denomination whose 16 million members in the US make it the second largest Christian group (after the Catholics) in America. Large, overweight, overwhelmingly white and middle class, their eyes and teeth gleam at you as you pass by. "Hi!" they ejaculate in a friendly fashion, and "God bless!" as they recede from view.
Where else might one find a lede referring to the race, BMI, and economic class of the subject of a newspaper article? Please note that clear eyes and healthy teeth seem also to be a negative. And being friendly is a clear sign of somethingorother, we'renotsurewhat, butitmustbebad.

It's taken some time, but the Midwest Conservative Journal has fisked the article, in a performance that includes this gem:
Fundamentalist - (1) A person who believes that the Bible means what it says. (2) A person whose view of the Scriptures is more rigorous than yours is. (3) A person who thinks that, absent clouds, lightning, fire and the voice of God at Mount Sinai, the Bible shouldn't be rewritten just to make some group feel better about itself. Under these definitions, Benedict XVI is a fundamentalist . . . .
The meeting into which The Guardian's reporter ventured was in Greensboro, North Carolina. Having found there what he took to be "fundamentalists," it's a shame he didn't have a knowledgable native guide to direct him a mere 190 miles to the southwest, where he could have found the real thing, in their native habitat. Alarmed by garden variety Southern Baptists, Heaven only knows what he'd have written about the truly militant wing.

Hat tip to relapsed catholic.

Comments on "They Use Forks, Don't They?"


Anonymous Arlington said ... (9:12 PM) : 

If he'd made that trip you recommend (and if he were actually trying to be humorous), he might have written something like this:



Blogger Gentleman Farmer said ... (10:26 PM) : 

I don't understand why National Review is giving a narrow-minded ex-comic so much space.

Aside from instances in which the university acted like every other college and university (such as contacting him and his kid after they learned of their interest), it seems to me that BJU treated Franken with courtesy and respect -- like a serious person. In other words, just exactly like one would hope that the folks at your son's college would treat you and him.

Meanwhile, Franken sneers and goes out of his way to make fun of . . . exactly what? And, while I obviously cannot know, I'm very sure that several parts of the story are made up. They just don't sound right to me.

Of course, readers with greater familiarity with BJU might help us out here.


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