October 2, 2011 by Bill
In Travels with Charley there is a marvelous scene where John Steinbeck and his poodle have checked into a motel room where everything was wrapped in cellophane with a notice that warned him: “These items have been sterilized for your protection.” And Steinbeck, disgusted, wrote: “Everyone was protecting me and it was just horrible.” He continues with a critique of our sanitized lives today.
The knee-jerk and hysterical people who are on a never-ending crusade to sanitize our lives are not only boring, but lose their case by hyperbolic obsession. It is almost impossible today to read a magazine or newspaper without being overwhelmed by the latest news on what is bad for us to do, eat, drink or smoke. We are told to stay clear of fat, milk, ice cream, butter, cream, sugar, coffee, alcohol, tobacco, red meat, white meat, shell fish, and the list would take up the rest of this entire column, listing all that will destroy us. How I love that Julia Child, the great goddess of cooking, who uses real butter and real sugar and when asked at age 92 the secret of her abundant health and energy, she replied, “red meat and gin.”
Perhaps I would change my habits for the better if only anyone was sure what “better” was, or is. I am told to “walk more,” and yet Arnold Palmer, who has walked five miles a day all of his adult life, came down with prostate cancer. I would give up alcoholic beverages, except that I know Bertrand Russell sipped about a fifth of bourbon daily and was still strong and productive in his 90s, as was Winston Churchill, who not only sipped his bottle of brandy daily, but went through a box of expensive cigars daily.
I would give up fried foods, except I remember that my 98 year old West Texas grandmother lived on deep fried ranch food all of her long and full life. And I remember that religion, from the Crusades to Northern Ireland, has killed more people than all of the drinkables, smokables, and eatables combined. This proves that religion is the most deadly habit of our species. When Dr. Lewis Thomas was Dean of the Yale University Medical School, he wrote, “We doctors are really just plain dumb as to how and why the human body works.”
The politicians and those with private agendas are now in a piranha feeding frenzy on all of the horrible evils of tobacco. Perhaps one of the most stupid slogans ever devised by man is, “A tobacco free California.” Anyone with an I.Q. above three would see that as one of the most absurd and insane slogans ever written. If we can rise above the psychotic hypocrisy of it all, let’s delete every thing, object, or item that can kill people. Let us start with the twisted mentality and logic of the NRA. Nobody needs tobacco, but everyone needs guns we are told. If you are so gullible as to believe that, I have a farm in the middle of the Sahara desert I’ll sell you. Guns don’t kill people they say. People kill people. And the BS flows.
With this same mentality of stupidity, here is what we can now proclaim: Liquor does not kill people. It is drunks who kill people. Alcohol kills more people, wipes out more families with child and spouse abuse, causes more death in auto collisions than anything connected with tobacco. No person has yet smashed head on into another car and wiped out an entire family after smoking. It happens every day with alcohol. How about this: “A liquor free California.” When you stop laughing, I will continue. Take heart disease, the greatest killer with high cholesterol a cause. Dr. Paul Dudley White, the personal physician to President Eisenhower, said at a national press conference: “The dairy cow is the greatest killer in America.” So, let go for it folks: “A dairy cow free California.”
Hospitals, according to the statistics of Ralph Nader, as well as Norman Cousins and others, state that mistakes and malpractice kill over 300,000 people a year. New slogan: “A hospital free California.”
And once again, the most important slogan of all of them combined: “A RELIGION FREE CALIFORNIA.” The greatest of all the killers of humanity: Judaism, Christianity and Islam. These three “religions of the book,” the bible, have killed more people over the last 2,500 years than all of the other killers COMBINED. From the Old Testament to the Crusades, the Inquisition to the West Bank, to today’s killings of abortion doctors and clinic personnel, to crimes against gay people, and where does it end, if I just keep listing human deaths due to religion?
A crazy world we live in. Vested interests and organizations with agendas will try to control our lives.
A few things to remember:
Learn to trust your own personal experiences and intuition. Accept the risks that go with taking control of your own life. Enjoy the freedoms that go with such a decision. The more we depend on “others” who want to sanitize our lives, the less we become. And when those “others” tell you how HORRIBLE life would be without them, run as fast as you can… away. Human beings, in this mass dumbing down, sink unconsciously to an inferior moral and intellectual order. A million zeros joined together still equal ZERO.
“NEVER… never again, let anyone push you in any direction not in harmony with your own nature. In the sanitized and slogan-inundated world we live in, stand apart from the torpid and mindless mass of human beings to listen to your own inner voice and follow your own path. And you will find the greatest gift known… freedom to be who and what you REALLY ARE.