By Izzy’s standards we’re all doomed
Someone in my Facebook feed recently asked this: Why is it the hysteria over this Israel Folau post is based around the homophobia only? Haven't seen any drunks, adulterers, liars, fornicators, thieves, atheists or idolaters, taking offence - and Lord knows there's more of them than anything else.
Thanks to the thinly veiled homophobic nature of this post, I thought I'd throw my hand up as someone (guilty of most of the above) who, along with homosexuals, also doesn't care for random threats of eternal damnation, especially given they're coming from some over-inflated, rugby-playing type. After all, the Wallabies are No. 6 in the world, Izzy. No. 6! Maybe the preaching and praying for redemption could be better directed
But I digress, and so to the above turpitudes - and given it's an election campaign, a few pollies are up for a mention too.
Liars: A bit coincidentally, I dealt with this last week, so my position on lying and liars, including politicians with forked tongues, is already out there.
Thieves: I sort of dealt with stealing last week, too. Stealing is, I think, all tied up with the dishonesty thing. If you have no trouble lying, then you likely have no trouble thieving. I don't think I can fess up to much more, except for the time I was talked into trying to nick some lollies from a little shop up the road from our primary school.
"It's easy," said my naughty friend. It wasn't. My face was already flaming as I tried to execute the heist and, as usual, I was caught red-handed with half a dozen chicos and raspberries and the furious shopkeeper, no doubt fed up with small hands making light-fingered work of his lolly counter, demanded my name and phone number and said he was calling the police.
He didn't call the cops, but he did call home and by the time I got there was in a sick panic. But I may as well have been tossed in a cell and given the fat end of a walloper's truncheon because Mum's lecture, laced with disappointment, was just as excruciating.
I'm not sure I can outright charge any of our politicians with stealing. There's our defamation laws to consider for one thing. But also some of the stuff that goes on is, well, murky so I'll leave it to you to decide whether things like the repayment of questionable travel and other claimed "entitlements" only after media exposure, or the awarding of lucrative government contracts to corporate entities which make generous political donations or which have or had links to MPs, fits the bill.
Drunks: I don't mind admitting there was a time I had to face up to the fact I was heading towards alcoholism. It was when everything seemed to be coming together and apart simultaneously. A failed marriage. Single parenting. Living on or likely under the poverty line.
Trying to work full-time while studying part-time and then vice versa, with the study aimed at lifting my income-earning potential to address the poverty side of things. I so clearly remember the morning I woke up with the inescapable realisation I had a problem and unless I did something about it, right now, something catastrophic was going to happen.
That morning I made a series of difficult phone calls including to my GP to make an appointment to get a referral to a shrink, and the toughest call of all, to AA.
Attending some AA sessions was, I think, the hardest thing I've ever done, but I left with eyes that have remained wide open about the dangers of alcohol addiction, and the years of therapy I embarked on continues to prove exponentially invaluable.
As for the pollies, well, the most memorable recent admission of someone going a pot too far was when Tony Abbott finally admitted to being passed out in his office sleeping off a big session and missing some very important votes associated with the Rudd government's $52 billion GFC-busting stimulus package in 2009. Abbott was then the opposition leader and for years denied the real reason he'd missed the votes - until 2017 when he fessed up. While it was a one-off, if this were to become a more regular occurrence, as a Catholic true believer, Tony might be in a bit of trouble on two of Izzy's counts.
Adulterers and fornicators: I think these two fit together. What do you reckon, Barnaby?
As for me, well, in the heady, sexually liberated 70s and 80s, if the latter was an Olympic event I might have been in for a chance at the Gold. But, hey, back then, the competition would have been tough.
Idolaters: Guilty as charged but only if we're including the musicians and comedians who I dead set worshipped in my youth, like Zeppelin, Bowie, Python, Williams. No regrets.
Atheists: My family were church goers and, when small, I enjoyed Sunday services for the pageantry and music. Believing in God was part of it, as was saying prayers we were told would be heard. But, then, my sweetest, kindest nan who I loved very much died after being ravaged by cancer, while my bad-tempered and unkind grandad lived on and I found my seven-year-old angry self standing at the window in the front lounge room of our house, looking up at the clouds and thinking "Nup".
And nothing in the ensuing half a century, as wars in the name of religion continue to be waged and while observing too many of the malignant and mendacious thriving while proclaiming religiosity and righteousness, has changed my mind.
One good thing about revealing all this is all the other sometime drunks, thieves, fornicators etc., nettled by Izzy's smug condemnation can take comfort they're not alone.
As for the atheists, well, answerable only to our own lively consciences and comfortable with our mortality, it's really all water off a Twitter bird's back.