Could you define or explain any of the following mysterious phrases?
Freedom’s holy light. What's that? What makes a light holy? How much energy does it require?
The pit of disunity and discord. Where is this pit? What happens if you fall into it? Can you get out? How did the pit get there? Why has it not been filled?
Bridges of cooperation. Where are such bridges? Who built them? Were they expensive? Are they like bridges to nowhere?
The one and only constituent in America that U.S. Senators absolutely MUST please. Who's that? Rupert Murdock? Which Koch brother? How much did he have to contribute for such influence? What if he's not pleased absolutely?
Counsel that can stand forever. How does that work? Are there any examples?
Ears and eyes that are "quickened." What happens when such parts are quickened? Does this mean powers like Superman?
God on Capitol Hill. Has this ever happened? When? Why did he leave?
If these phrases seem weird or incomprehensible, well, you must not be a member of the U.S. Senate. It turns out that someone addressed the senate last week and talked like that. I'm not kidding - you can look it up.
These phrases and others as bizarre were uttered last week by a Seventh-Day Adventist minister named Barry C. Black. Mr. Black is the Senate's official "chaplain." He asked the Almighty, in a prayer, to “give to our lawmakers the wisdom to know the role they should play in keeping freedom’s holy light bright.” Well, there you have it. Obviously, nothing happened. We see once again that nothing fails like prayer.
Language of this kind in any forum should be viewed as a mental health issue. However, a grotesque custom privileges religious talk - no demented babble, however ludicrous, raises eyebrows, let alone sets off 911 calls for the looney wagon.
If we were a rational people with a secular Republic, there would be no chaplains funded by taxpayers. There would be less crazy talk in the U.S. Senate, though Republicans and Tea Party types would supply some, no doubt. There certainly would be no expectation by the representatives of the people that an invisible sky god (for which there is no evidence whatsoever) would have any interest in becoming involved in our politics.
Besides, are we not still committed to government of the people, by the people and for the people? Why have a Congress at all if we have to rely on a deity to solve our problems?