On Anti-Semitism - A Scaryduck murder mystery
Heard it again. Middle-aged woman on the train, silver hair, silver crucifix.
"Why's that then?"
Christ on a bike - talk about holding a grudge. Now, your author is at least 12% Jewish (or to you, eleven), and can trace at least one Cockney Rabbi in his ancestry (it's like Steve Harley's Cockney Rebel, except on Saturdays). I'm not a huge fan of the current Israeli state by any means, and that's one issue I can witter on about for pages before eventually coming to blows, accused of being a PLO-apologist. And that was with my wife. Another issue entirely.
So... this Jesus bloke whose death I'm at least 12% involved in. My kind of Messiah, and I should know having followed a few in my time. Let's put the whole thing into context. Here he is, turning up in Jerusalem, just before Passover with a cheering crowd following his triumphant tour of Canaan and Galilee. He preaches a popular message of peace and brotherly love in times of military occupation and has a reputation for handing out free booze at wedding parties.
If I was the local military governor, I'd be a bit nervous in case this guy started mouthing off and starting some sort of uprising that wouldn't look too good back in Rome. But as long as he's preaching peace, blessing cheesemakers and not breaking any actual laws by joining up with the Campaign for Free Galilee, everything's fine and dandy. In the name of Bacchus, he's even handing out free booze at weddings... wash your hands of this man, he's no threat to the Empire.
Now, for you local clergy, it's a completely different barrel of fish. They've got this handy little racket going, a hugely impressive temple, as much power as Pilate will let them have and regular stonings to keep the congregation happy. Then this guy turns up on the back of a donkey, tells you that you're doing it all wrong and disrupts your nice little earner with the money-lenders, saying it's "upsetting his dad." Alarm bells are probably ringing at this point.
Then to cap it all, he's going round telling people that he's the Son of God, for Jehovah's sake; and if you think about it long enough, he says that He is the physical embodiment of our Lord. He hangs around with fishermen, prostitutes, ex-lepers and even Samaritans. Who does he think he is?
Nail him up, that'll learn him.
Remember the humilation heaped on David Icke when he outed himself as the Son of God? Not too long ago, he would have been sharing a stake with Joan of Arc, and she'd only been hearing voices. Good thing we live in a more tolerant society where nutters are ten-a-penny, eh?
OK, so Mel Gibson says the Jews had Jesus nailed up for upsetting their apple cart, but that a simplistic view that's endured for two thousand years simply because it's easy to blame someone else for you troubles. Someone had to take the rap, and the Jewish people have taken it - all of them - ever since. And on the whole, most have got a pretty strong alibi.
Sloth, envy, greed and the other four sins I can remember right now - they're the culprits. Lust - for power - that's another - embodied in those hapless priests in Jerusalem. It's symbolic for Christ's sake - "Forgive them, for they know not what they do", spoken of those who comdemned him and those who did the actual hard crucifying work on the ground. Ask Salman Rushdie - you can't help it if stupid people take your work at face value. All this time and the Jewish people are still taking the rap for a bit of shonky copy-editing.
Look, for the next edition, God may wish to consider an explanatory yet amusing foot-note in the style of Terry Pratchett; or introduce a comedy canine sidekick disciple who we can waste little time in blaming for our own shortcomings.
"And Jesus, in his Passion, did look down from the cross and sayeth 'Although you have sinned greatly against me and my Father, I forgive your trespass."
And Scrappy doth fall to his knees in thanks and exclaimeth "P-p-p-p-puppy Power!"
That'll do it. First class ticket to Hell please, change at Portsmouth.