The Onion, the satirical paper of record, has a clever twist on the contraceptive debate in the form of a breathless report entitled “Vatican Dispatches Elite Team Of Bishops To Sabotage Contraceptive Manufacturer“:
Anonymous sources within the Vatican confirmed Tuesday that Pope Benedict XVI has dispatched a crack team of six highly skilled bishops to sabotage the New York headquarters of pharmaceutical giant Pfizer, a leading contraceptive manufacturer.Responding to what it called the “ongoing crisis of readily available birth control,” the Vatican reportedly assembled its finest clerical operatives—an elite unit consisting of the Roman Catholic Church’s very best demolitions expert, cryptographer, forger, con artist, helicopter pilot, and martial arts master—and briefed them on the confidential mission in a secret command bunker deep beneath the catacombs of St. Peter’s Basilica…Known officially as the Sixth Conclave for the Defense of Mankind Against All Carnalities of the Flesh—or Conclave 6, for short—the Vatican’s most lethal squad of bishops is believed to be headed by master tactician Archbishop Wolfgang Haas of Liechtenstein, with major reconnaissance being handled by Phoenix Bishop Thomas “The Ground Hawk” Olmsted, who doubles as the group’s sniper.
Now, to hear the leftie punditocracy tell it, contemporary American politics is but one electoral misstep away from the advent of Christian theocracy, whether in Catholic, Mormon or some other guise. Via Meadia, along with progressives made of more sober stuff, has pushed back against this hysteria, noting that conservative religious groups have neither the desire, the means, nor the consensus to impose their values coercively on the American public.And as The Onion reminds us, real theocrats don’t look anything remotely like today’s Christian Right; they look like the Saudi Committee for the Promotion of Virtue and the Prevention of Vice—or like the farcical special forces bishops of “Conclave Six.”In other words, the article is funny because it is so utterly preposterous. Theophobes and mysopists (haters of faith) should take note: their political nightmare is Onion-bait.