Saturday, December 19, 2009

Counting on the End of the World

There's a minor controversy in the U.S. regarding Christmas, the census and Jesus Christ:

A push to spread the gospel about the 2010 Census this Christmas is stoking controversy with a campaign that links the government count to events surrounding the birth of Jesus.

The National Association of Latino Elected Officials is leading the distribution to churches and clergy of thousands of posters that depict the arrival of Joseph and a pregnant Mary in Bethlehem more than 2,000 years ago. As chronicled in the Gospel of Luke, Joseph returned to be counted in a Roman census, but he and Mary found no room at an inn, and Jesus was born in a manger.

"This is how Jesus was born," the poster states. "Joseph and Mary participated in the Census."

Most of the posters are in Spanish and target Latino evangelicals, says Jose Cruz, senior director of civic engagement at the Latino association, which launched its Ya Es Hora (It's Time) campaign in 2006 to promote voter registration among Latinos.

It is promoting the Census, used to help allocate $400 billion a year in federal dollars, redraw state and local political districts and determine the number of seats each state gets in Congress.

This is, probably, blasphemous. It is, definitely, offensive. It is, comically, stupid.

Let's re-cap the actual story of Christmas.  An unrepresentative and oppressive government forces a pregnant woman, who appears to be term, to travel cross-country on a donkey to participate in a useless bureaucratic excercise.

Is this what the National Association of Latino Elected Officials are trying to say?  The oppressive, undemocratic U.S. government, via the census, imposes incredibly trying ordeals on pregnant women.

Oh wait, it gets better.

Upon the birth of Mary's (the dutiful census participant) son, Herod, the corrupt ruler, attempts to kill her son.  When that fails, he orders the murder of all boys under the age of two.  So, apparently, participating in the census will lead to the slaughter of children.

Of course, that's not the end of it.  Mary gives birth to Jesus Christ, the Messiah.  So, apparently, participating in the census will lead you to give birth to the Son of Man.  Of course, this will be the second coming of the Saviour, which means, the End of Days.

Yup, according to the National Association of Latino Elected Officials, participating in the census will lead to the end of the world.

Well, I guess if they're quite devout, they might welcome the Rapture.

(H/T: Hit & Run)

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