The Breakfast Table

Every Little Baby Is a Miracle Straight From God

Dear Merrill,

Yeah, but in L.A. you can get chicken waffles.

Why do people think they have the right to demand that a Kevin Smith movie not be seen? It’s like some misbegotten bastard stepchild of the civil rights movement, I guess, but for some reason, everybody’s forgetting that just because you’re Catholic doesn’t mean Kevin Smith doesn’t have the right to make fun of you as much as he damn well pleases. As in, he could’ve made a movie called Fuck You, Pope if he wanted. But since I was recently called a “callow, superficial, self-obsessed bunny” by one of Slate’s readers (I didn’t mind the adjectives, but “bunny” kind of hurt), I guess I should skip the Kevin Smith and Moesha ruminations and get on to the “grown-up” news (damn, that means I have to skip the Journal feature on the @ symbol!).

After my psychotic outburst of HMO-vitriol, I almost hesitate to comment on your remark about Christopher H. Smith, because regarding the deal that was worked out to impose “anti-abortion” restrictions on international Third-World family planning aid programs as a condition of paying our long-overdue U.N. debt, I’m on the verge of spinning out into berzerker mode again. Look, it’s a free country (OK, so actually, it’s a really expensive and not to mention debt-ridden country, but I digress), and people can believe what they want. But while I respect the Right of Iowa Gun-Lobbyists and Southern Fundamentalists Not To Respect a Woman’s Right To Choose, when it comes to global overpopulation, it’s not a matter of some domestic political disagreement, for Christ’s sake, you’re talking about the whole world.

The same goes for (speaking of Catholics) all the medieval doctrinists in the Vatican who seem bent on imposing a Third-World fertility program on every underdeveloped and uneducated native populace under heaven. As a genuine honest-to-goodness Son of a Preacher Man, I feel qualified to say that I don’t think Jesus is standing at the gates of Paradise shouting down “Send More Dead Babies!” As Christopher Hitchens pointed out simply and clearly in his great (and much-hated, and banned) book (and film, too, though I haven’t seen it) on Mother Theresa, it’s one thing to say you have this long-standing religious belief and tradition and you want to stick to it out of devotion to your faith, but when you are not only a) blindly encouraging poverty-stricken masses to breed like rabbits, but also b) actively stopping, I mean, going out of your way to directly oppose, the efforts of those courageous souls who are trying to make sure those people can get a handful or two of grain and maybe a few ounces of clean water to wash the parasites out of their underwear every day. Then it’s no longer a question of how Every Little Baby Is a Miracle Straight From God. And if your spiritual traditions can’t handle such an obvious fact (note: not religious opinion, but science fact, like as in, you know, math), then you must be stopped. And, yeah, that goes for the pope, too.

And I eagerly await your thoughts on the string theory article. I’m not sure, but I worry that it may conflict with the biblical account of Genesis.

I love you, too, Merrill,