This is a guest post by Jessica Ahlquist. Jessica is a Junior at Cranston High School West.
On Monday night when I was flying home to Rhode Island from Columbus, I found something interesting in the seat pocket in front of me. It was a little plastic charm with an image of Mary on it. Around her, the charm reads,
“O Mary conceives without sin pray for us who have recourse to thee.”
This bothers me.
I suppose a lot of Christians read this as a nice message. You know, that famous old “Mary is pure and we’re sinners” bit. Still, it bugs me. What is it REALLY saying?
It’s saying that people are bad, and that we need forgiveness and prayer in order to be happy and good.
It’s called fear mongering and it’s what the media uses to sell people lies and products they don’t need. They scare people into believing they need things they really don’t.
For example, that commercial of the unpopular guy who uses fancy cologne to make all the girls like him is fear mongering. It’s basically saying that any guy who doesn’t use this product is never going to get a date. It gets even more obvious though. There’s another commercial for some sort of anti-bacterial spray in which the mother is freaking out because her kids are touching dirty doorknobs and telephones.
It may not seem like it at first, but that is religion in a nutshell. Religion plays on fear and guilt because it wants to manipulate and control people. It threatens people with Hell just like the commercials threaten people with unpopularity or germs. And it markets itself, too. Religion is trying to sell everyone an eternal happiness or afterlife: an intangible, nonexistent product unnecessary for living a fulfilling life.
Selling products that don’t exist or work is called a scam. Religion is a scam and it should be treated as such.