Friday, February 28, 2014

I Found Religion - In Arizona

This column originally appeared in The Sun Chronicle on Friday, February 28, 2014

By Bill Gouveia


            I have found religion.  I am moving to Arizona and living my life by my own deep convictions so I can be free, in the truest and most holy sense of the word. 


            Arizona is obviously the holy land.  It is the state that gave us Barbara Eden, Barry Goldwater, Geronimo and Sheriff Joe Arpaio.  It is home to great thinkers in the state legislature, evidenced by the bill they passed recently to defend the rights of those of us with true faith.


I have adopted the religion of Loopholeism, part of a widely growing religious organization.  We are dedicated to taking advantage of all the loopholes the Good Lord intended us to use in order to make our society what it should be, and what we demand it become.  We are all about freedom, even if we have to take away the rights of everyone else in order to get it.


            The Loopholeist philosophy is rooted in that most common religious belief that our way is the right way.  We just need to get everyone else to see it that clearly.  We hold fast to our conviction that every single person in this world has the right to do things our way, and no doubt would if we just forced them.


            In Arizona, lawmakers passed a bill (since vetoed by the Governor, a small delay) that would allow any company to refuse to do business with gays or lesbians if – and this is the key here – if doing so truly violated their religious beliefs.  Now according to Loopholeist theology, being gay is a sin.  Serving gays is a sin also, because by merely acknowledging their existence we give credence and value to that sin.  As a result, our right to feel good about ourselves at the expense of others is outrageously violated.


            As Loopholeists, we fully support the right of gay people to be sinners.  It is their choice, and we will defend to the death their right to be wrong.  But we cannot sit back and allow ourselves to be seen as serving or consorting with sinners.  After all, how can you feel good about yourself unless you have someone to look down at?  Equality is a wonderful thing, but only those who believe with us can truly be equal.


            Our Loopholeist beliefs are summed up in our holy book, known as the Loo.  Whenever we need to contemplate life, we go straight to the Loo.  The Loo is full of what we thrive on, and we pride ourselves on spreading as much of it as possible as far as we can.  And Arizona seems like just the perfect place for spreading.


            We do not align ourselves with any other religion, because to do that would be admitting there might be a way of doing things different from our own.  We think all religions should have the right to not serve gays and lesbians or anyone else they might object to, and would stand with them if they chose that path.  We are all brothers and sisters when it comes to separating ourselves from those less worthy.


            And when we are done making sure we are free from dealing with gays, we can move forward towards other worthy goals.  Of course, that may mean culling out some of our “brothers and sisters” who have views that violate our sincerely held beliefs.  But at least the homosexual sinners won’t be totally lonely.


            Being a Loopholeist also means being free of politics.  We are neither Democrats nor Republicans, not Liberals nor Conservatives.  In fact we don’t want to deal with those people either, unless they become Loopholeists.  After all, we are a welcoming group.


            Not much grows in the deserts of Arizona, but the seeds we seek to plant will firmly take root.  We will demonstrate the right way to live by highlighting all the wrong ways.  We will find fault with all others, until the only acceptable alternative is us.


            But all of you should feel free to believe in your own religion or philosophy.  You see, we Loopholeists aren’t in control of anything yet.  But if we can take Arizona today, who knows where we will end up tomorrow.  Veto be damned.


Bill Gouveia is a local columnist who hopes everyone understands satire. He can be emailed at and followed on Twitter at @Billinsidelook.

No comments: