I hear a lot about the real America. I’m told it’s a very particular kind of place. It’s the heartland with its God-fearing and armed Christians which is the real America. Not the perverted coasts. Not elitist New York or liberal Hollywood.

Problem is, I love the fake America. I’m an immigrant–I know, we’re not quite as fashionable as we used to be–and I definitely didn’t come here for the real America. If I wanted to be surrounded by farms and church-goers, I could’ve stayed in rural Eastern Europe. Those of us around the world who dream of America dream of a glamorous and exciting place. I dreamed of the land of skyscrapers and city skylines, of jazz and rap. I didn’t think of Americans as people who followed conservative tradition, I thought of them as people who outraged their elders by doing inappropriate dances, and doing them with inappropriate dance partners. My parents imitated Americans with jeans and hippie hair and rock’n’roll. When we lived behind the Iron Curtain and we fantasized about the States, we didn’t fantasize about being a televangelist (except maybe for their wealth).

Our patriotic pundits like to remind us that America is exceptional. I agree that it is. But if it looked like they wish it did, it wouldn’t be exceptional at all. There are already plenty of narrow-minded and theocratic places on this planet–there’s no need for more. There’s not nearly enough of the mixed-up and the crazy and the sinful. Those are the parts of America I love the most. And I hope that God or Goddess will continue to bless them for many years to come.

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After catching up on my science news tonight, I can understand why some of my conservative religious friends don’t like science very much.  One of the articles told me that we exist inside a huge black hole.  Another one proposed the theory that we are just imaginary holograms.  And that wasn’t half as scary as reading about the reality of what is happening to our climate, and of what might happen to our crops and food supply.

So I’m almost ready to do as the Christian conservatives do and ditch scientific thinking altogether.  Now, instead of looking forward to the weather spinning out of control, I can dream about the Rapture, in which I will be magically airlifted out of any future problems.  Instead of fearing a world war, I can welcome it–it’s a necessary precursor to Armageddon, after all.  And who doesn’t want Armageddon?  If the Bible seems a little antiquated, I can always substitute the kindly guidance of aliens, which will culminate in a moment of global enlightenment in December 2012.  Either way, I will know what to expect, as opposed to feeling like I’m getting tossed here and there in a dark universe.  Take those scientists and burn them at the stake, like we used to!  They make me nervous.

Unfortunately, I’m a little too creative and too easily distracted, which means I will never be able to stick to one theology for very long.  My attempt at staying inside the safety of that box is doomed from the start.  That’s okay–there’s more than enough beauty in this chaotic universe to keep me going.