I know a lot of good people, I’ll even say I consider myself one. Leave me alone with your purse and the contents will remain undisturbed, and I won’t spread a bunch of rumors about you to spice up a conversation. That said, two of the big news stories this week; the rape conviction of those kids in Ohio and the new Pope leave me thinking that as a species we’re a bit on the vile side. The actions of the two young men in Ohio and the members of the press and the community who seem to be defending their actions leave me scratching my head. What kind of person, when they see an incapacitated 16-year-old girl, has the idea to stick their dick in her mouth? What about helping her? How about holding her hair so she doesn’t puke all over it? And even if the thought does enter your mind you can simply choose not to mouth-rape her and still be a decent person. Do we really need to teach people that that is wrong? I understand why the Religious right doesn’t want sex education in schools. (First off, it’s education and secondly sex for them is supposed to be a mysterious, shameful, scary thing used ONLY for procreation and manipulation.) But can we at least have rape education in middle school? Apparently we need it.
As far as the Pope goes, I’m not saying he’s a bad dude he seems pretty laid back. I was thinking a little broader. Why does Christianity need to use the threat of hell to scare people into not being complete assholes? I’ve really found that doing the right thing is reward enough. I’ve done a few jag-off things in my life, I felt like a jag-off, I didn’t like it. And do we really need set-in-stone commandments to deter us from stealing and murdering? If Pope Francis decreed infallibly (as only the Pope can do) that “Thou Shalt Not Kill” was a typo and killing isn’t a sin would Catholics everywhere go on a murder spree? I would think not, but at this point I just don’t know. I’m thankful I have so many good people in my life, but I’m leaning to the position that Man is inherently evil. As evidence I look to our planet earth; it is most beautiful where there are the fewest of us.
Ed Furman is a Second City alumni and a co-founder of the Annoyance Theater. He is a playwright and co-authored the hits Co-ed Prison Slutsand Rod Blagojevich: Superstar.