How to use the Bible to get away with murder
The Bible is really quite a sophisticated weapon. It can even be used for murder. Not by bludgeoning someone, but by using it to stir up hate. Here, we distill down the lessons from some of Christianity's spiritual leaders and show how it's done.

Step 1. Find someone to hate

The first step is to find a person or a group that you despise. After all, if you're going to make someone's life miserable (or worse), they may as well be someone you don't like. If you can't find someone, choose one of the old stand-bys: those who practice other religions (especially pagans), reproductive rights advocates, homosexuals, ACLU members, or liberals. If you don't want admit to hating the person/group, just claim to hate what they stand for or do. Just say that you "love the sinner, hate the sin." (But you really just hate.)

Step 2. Find a contradiction in the Bible

The next step is to find some contradiction in the Bible. You might be surprised to learn that the Bible is full of them. Anything that mentions God will work. Take, for example, the notion that God is supposed to be all knowing, but that he changes his mind so many times. Creationism is a popular contradiction from the Bible. It contradicts modern science. If you need help finding a contradiction, see the Skeptic's Annotated Bible. They have a whole catalogue to choose from.

Step 3. Vilify using the Bible

Now, use the contradiction to make an argument against the hated group. The logic of your argument should be completely sound--you don't want to come across as being unreasonable. But because the reasoning rests on a contradiction, you can conclude anything you like about anybody you dislike. Here's an example: "Pagans do not believe in God, so they are heretics and deserve to die."

Step 4. Invoke Devine authorship

Don't forget to emphasize the assertion that the Bible was written by God himself and therefore anything in it is holy and should be taken with great seriousness. Going against your argument is effectively trying to argue with God. You are taking the side of righteousness.

Step 5. Bring out the venom

Add some vitriol to your argument by adding some fire-and-brimstone quotes from the Bible. There's plenty of death and genocide in the Bible. Just throw down some Biblical quotes to show them you mean business. It also emphasizes that God is on your side in this. And nobody wants to be on the opposing side.

Step 6. Stir up the masses

Use your venom and hate to stir up the masses. Hatred is a human emotion. Tell them that their hatred is pious and that they'll go to heaven for it. This is where the devout will go and do anything to satisfy their greed for heaven. Killing those evildoers is just a small part of what they'll do to get there. "Those liberals are destroying our great country."

Step 7. Blame the victim and praise the Lord!

Of course, you can claim that you had nothing to do with the trouble you caused. The victim(s) brought God's wrath upon himself (themselves). It was God's merciful and benevolent judgment on them. "AIDS is God's wrath on those sick homosexuals! Praise Jesus!" If anyone criticizes your use of religion, you can just claim that everyone worships God in his or her own way and that it is a free country. God Bless America! After all, you're the holy one. There's nothing wrong with anything you've done.

Step 8. Repeat your way to power

With your newly found followers and moral authority, go after your next victim. Feel the rush of power! You might even consider running for President.

Welcome to Brownwood, Texas, USA

While the Religious Right has used this recipe for years, we'd like to draw some attention to the town of Brownwood, in central Texas. The town has a long history of homophobia, including an officially organized posse to keep out homosexuals who might have come to protest the 1977 anti-homosexual tour of singer Anita Bryant. A pastor in the suburb town of Bangs has recently started a crusade against homosexuals. He has started a debate in the local media about whether homosexuals were going to heaven and attempting to elaborate on "God's word" on the subject. More recently, the "debate" has turned into public baiting of homosexuals over the local radio station. The town has a history of intimidation of this sort.

Despite the vocal religious fervor in the town in the promotion of moral values, Brownwood has a higher per capita crime rate than El Paso. The town police have two unsolved murders. One is the 1996 kidnapping and execution-style shooting of a 29 year-old man who was openly gay and dating a high school coach from a neighboring town. The murderers also torched his car for good measure. In another case, a lesbian resident was raped and left for dead. During the attack, the rapist continually said things like, "you won't be a dyke when I'm done with you," and "I'll show you what a man can do for you." Police refuse to report either as a hate crime, despite the U.S. reporting law. "We don't really have any hate crimes in Brown County," said Brown County Sheriff Glen Smith. Police have also cleared all suspects of suspicion and have no leads. Additionally, they claim not to have a motive for either murder.

The Brownwood police are obviously good Christians who qualify as dupes in our hate recipe of this essay. They also give the appearance of being incompetent and/or intertwined with the murders.