Right wing religious conspiracy theorists have shown a remarkable ability to perceive the signs of a satanic plot practically anywhere that they look, regardless of the lack of satanically-related material involved. Recently, they’ve spewed out loosely-stitched claims that the health care reform passed into law will soon require everyone in America to be implanted with microchips, capable of transmitting and receiving signals. A quick search of the legislation shows that it doesn’t at all say what the conspiracy theorists claim it says, but the facts don’t seem to matter. The conspiracy’s fans are too excited by the idea that the Mark Of The Beast will soon arrive to pay attention to contrary details.
The motivation of these conspiracy theorists seems to center around avoidance. Instead of trying to fix present reality, with laws like the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, or other legislative alternatives, those who believe in the Mark Of The Beast prefer to categorically dismiss the entire world as we know it as irredeemably flawed. Rather than confronting the real problems that are bringing them trouble, they place their faith in a divine reset button, and look forward to the Mark Of The Beast as the beginning of a supernatural sweet and easy time when everybody will achieve happiness without having to work for it. As the Louisa Piccarreta Center For The Divine Will puts it, “Those who survive will participate in the most beautiful, holy and happy era of human history, because it is an Eternal Decree of God that what He began in the Garden of Eden must have its fulfillment in time, before the end of this world.”
Of course, it’s a rather extravagant gamble to presume that one can ignore present problems in the belief that a magical force will soon arrive to fix everything. Gambling is addictive, though, and those who are addicted to high stakes gambling are particularly capable of spinning elaborate justifications for their belief that one big redeeming win is just around the corner. So, it doesn’t matter to believers in the Mark Of The Beast that their predictions of a microchip apocalypse in March of 2013 turned out to be completely wrong. They’ve reinterpreted the signs, and are now placing their bets on a Satanic Obamacare End Time in 2017.
If people really want to go ahead and stake their reputations against such wild gambles, I suppose that they ought to have the right to do so. However, I would rather that they come up with at least a somewhat plausible End Times scenario – to put a little bit of elbow grease into their paranoia, working to find some scrap of reality upon which to build their delusions.
If the conspiracy theorists are going to babble on about the Mark Of The Beast, for example, shouldn’t there at least be one beast involved in their theories? Yesterday, in the U.S. Senate, legislation directly addressing the concerns of beasts was introduced by Richard Blumenthal. If passed into law, Blumenthal’s bill would make it against the law to attend any event at which the fighting of beasts is purposefully organized.
One might reasonably call this legislation the Beast Protection Act… and guess what the official legislative number of the bill is! It’s S. 666.
Come on, End Timers. Run with it.