Shrimp: God’s tastiest abomination

Tim Paluch

I like shrimp, can’t get enough of it. Fried shrimp, shrimp cocktail, shrimp creole, shrimp salad, the list goes on and on. An endless array of dishes from such a minuscule little animal. Unfortunately, the big guy upstairs has a problem with everybody’s favorite aquatic arthropod. In fact, God refers to shrimp as an “abomination.” For those who don’t know, an abomination isn’t a good thing. According to Leviticus 11:10, it is an abomination to eat “all that not have fins or scales in the water.” Now that I’ve come to terms with seeing the last of “All-You-Can-Eat” shrimp at the Old Country Buffet on Fridays during lent, it is time to give thanks. Give thanks that my parents don’t follow the Word of the Lord. Until recently, I thought of ma and pa as pretty spiritual people. They raised their kids as Catholics, and I just assumed they were devout Christians. Never assume. Turns out I was way off. Mom and Dad, if those are their real names, apparently skipped a little passage in the Bible I like to call Exodus 22:29. You remember that one. Reviewing the Old Testament one night during commercial breaks of back-to-back “Will and Grace” episodes, I found I should have been sacrificed to God. Everybody’s first-born son should actually be sacrificed, just like you should do with a goat, which, come to think of it I don’t remember happening either. We all know the Bible is full of contradictions and outdated lessons, but a couple of events in the past few weeks pushed me past the breaking point to where I just had to tell you again. The first was when Dr. Laura Schlessinger was granted another forum to tell people homosexuality is a biological error because it says so in Leviticus 18:22. Everyone from Red Lobster and Long John Silver to Motel 6 have dropped ads from her television show and only 2 percent of all viewers watched her debut. Then Preacher Tom showed up on campus again to shoot down evolution, homosexuality and women working with Bible quotes. I like the guy. There’s nothing like a day in the sun munching on a gyro listening to Tom tell a Hindu he’s going to hell. Close-mindedness and xenophobia are prerequisites for pushing Christianity on people. Dr. Laura, Tom, and the Christian Right have been doing it for years. We all have questions about our faith and what role a god should play. I have questions no one has been able to answer. First off, why is it okay to reference a passage from the Bible to denounce homosexuality as deviant, but it’s not kosher to reference it for the many other things people do that are “wrong?” Literal translations of the Bible say we should all be able to own slaves (Leviticus 25:44), sell our daughters into slavery (Exodus 21:7), and be executed for working on the Sabbath (Exodus 35:2). And for those of you into that kinky father-daughter drunken incest stuff, check out Genesis 19:31-38. Talk about family values. Another question for the Catholics, what is the deal with the pope? Why does one man get to be closer to God than all of the others? Does God really operate hierarchically? Is it the hat? Is that how it works? It must be the closer the top of your hat is to heaven, the holier you are. I’d like someone to explain how he walks with that thing. Is there a hidden pulley system somewhere holding his head up? Pope John Paul is getting up there in years, too. He has more than a few screws loose. And the pope is always changing the Catholic church’s views on things. First, Galileo was wrong, the church said the earth couldn’t possibly revolve around the sun, so they killed him. A couple of years later, when SCIENCE PROVED HIM RIGHT, they apologized. They murdered millions “in the name of God” during the Crusades, and were silent during the Holocaust. And not too long ago, the Church changed its’ views on organ testing. The reality of things is, as times change, everyone changes, including the church. Don’t get me wrong, I think that the Bible is probably the strongest moral outline we have, but let’s not take it literally and let’s not push it on people. Anything looks different and confusing under a microscope, and the Bible is no different. If there really is a God up there scratching his/her head about the world’s problems, a horrible world full of hatred, violence, bigotry, intolerance, greed and guns, I don’t think he is going to be worried about a homosexual marriage. I am not going to say whether or not I believe in a God, but if I do, it’s not the one that Dr. Laura or Tom believe in. Mine is loving and accepting. He/she would have to be. I mean, there is no way of proving it, but I have faith, and isn’t that what it’s all about?