Old Testament-world: Smell-the-sickness edition

A U.N. inspector has returned from a tour of Middle Eastern refugee camps with disturbing news.

Bangura detailed the processes by which “pretty virgins” captured by the jihadists were bought and sold at auctions.

Here’s a chilling excerpt: “After attacking a village, [the Islamic State] splits women from men and executes boys and men aged 14 and over. The women and mothers are separated; girls are stripped naked, tested for virginity and examined for breast size and prettiness. The youngest, and those considered the prettiest virgins fetch higher prices and are sent to Raqqa, the IS stronghold.

There is a hierarchy: sheikhs get first choice, then emirs, then fighters. They often take three or four girls each and keep them for a month or so, until they grow tired of a girl, when she goes back to market. At slave auctions, buyers haggle fiercely, driving down prices by disparaging girls as flat-chested or unattractive.

This recalls the Midianite genocide (Numbers 31) — which few Christian apologists hesitate to defend:

Since the Israelites had good reason to believe in God’s moral perfection, omniscience and omnipotence, the best choice for them would be to trust that God had a better understanding than they of the situation itself and the moral rules governing it. The only way for them to be justified in not obeying God’s command would be if the command were inherently evil and impossible to justify (though it must be cautioned that humans with their imperfect understanding could incorrectly decide a command was inherently evil).

“Monotheism is easily the greatest disaster to befall the human race.”

Gore Vidal

And, of course, slave markets were common throughout the American south before the Civil War, and it was a commonplace for women to be displayed naked so that their value could be properly judged. So, please: When you look at ISIS’ horrors, you’re looking at America’s Judeo-Christian heritage.

It was the Enlightenment that ended the indecencies of the Abrahamic faiths, and in only a small part of the world at that. And it is the Enlightenment, modernity’s spur, that is now under attack domestically and internationally. The sad truth is that human moral progress is the work of the few, that the overwhelming portion of humanity lives indifferently in the time in which they find themselves and with the values they are given.

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Civil Commotion is taking a long weekend. Regular posting will resume on Tuesday, May 26, and Will to Power will be back on the 27th. Y’all have a good, and safe, Memorial Day weekend.

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The Will to Power

Book Two: A Criticism of the Highest Values That Have Prevailed Hitherto
IV: How Virtue Is Made to Dominate

§312   Cruelty has become transformed and elevated into tragic pity, so that we no longer recognise it as such. The same has happened to the love of the sexes which has become amour-passion; the slavish attitude of mind appears as Christian obedience; wretchedness becomes humility; the disease of the nervus sympathicus, for instance, is eulogised as Pessimism, Pascalism, or Carlylism, etc.

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This was easy to predict

Robert Gates: Boy Scouts ban on gay troop leaders not sustainable

As I never tire of saying: Reality always has the last word.

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Be true to your cult, ctd

When Karen Hinkley (formerly Karen Root) discovered that her missionary-husband was a pedophile, she had their marriage annulled and left their church when it mobilized to protect him. So, naturally, she being the only actual grown-up in this drama, they turned on her. The letter and emails make a depressing — but instructive — read.

Religions are just cults that made it to the Big Time and, as Christianity shrinks and megachurches scramble to make the bills, they return to the cult origins that enabled their survival in a hostile environment that knew what they were. Expect to see a lot more of this as their decline continues.

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