Dispatches from the Creation Wars

Here’s a hilarious exchange of emails between a parent in Australia and the volunteer minister who acts as the official school counselor at his child’s school. The counselor sent home a permission slip for the parent to sign so his child could attend a play to teach them the “true meaning of Easter” and hilarity ensued. The parent is relentlessly snarky.

The permission slip has both a picture of a bunny with a chocolate egg and a picture of Jesus carrying the cross — and the option for allowing the child to go was already checked. The parent’s first reply:

From: David Thorne
Date: Wednesday 10 March 2010 7.12pm
To: Darryl Robinson
Subject: Permission Slip

Dear Darryl,

I have received your permission slip featuring what I can only assume is a levitating rabbit about to drop an egg on Jesus.

Thank you for pre-ticking the permission box as this has saved me not only from having to make a choice, but also from having to make my own forty five degree downward stroke followed by a twenty percent longer forty five degree upward stroke. Without your guidance, I may have drawn a picture of a cactus wearing a hat by mistake.

As I trust my offspring’s ability to separate fact from fantasy, I am happy for him to participate in your indoctrination process on the proviso that all references to ‘Jesus’ are replaced with the term ‘Purportedly Magic Jew.’

Regards, David.

After the school counselor replied and said that the parent was welcome to attend and that you didn’t have to be religious to enjoy the play, the parent writes back:

Dear Darryl,

Thank you for the kind offer, being unable to think of anything more exciting than attending your entertaining and fun filled afternoon, I tried harder and thought of about four hundred things.

I was actually in a Bible based play once and played the role of ‘Annoyed about having to do this.’ My scene involved offering a potplant, as nobody knew what Myrrh was, to a plastic baby Jesus then standing between ‘I forgot my costume so am wearing the teachers poncho’ and ‘I don’t feel very well’. Highlights of the play included a nervous donkey with diarrhoea causing ‘I don’t feel very well’ to vomit onto the back of Mary’s head, and the lighting system, designed to provide a halo effect around the manger, overheating and setting it alight. The teacher, later criticised for dousing an electrical fire with a bucket of water and endangering the lives of children, left the building in tears and the audience in silence. We only saw her again briefly when she came to the school to collect her poncho.

Also, your inference that I am without religion is incorrect and I am actually torn between two faiths; while your god’s promise of eternal life is very persuasive, the Papua New Guinean mud god, Pikkiwoki, is promising a pig and as many coconuts as you can carry.

Regards, David.

It goes on like this for many exchanges. My favorite line of the whole thing:

Your job would be made much easier if, after making the school children sit through an hour of church youth group teens dancing, singing and re-enacting Jewish magic tricks, you simply told them that it was just a small taste of what hell is like and if they didn’t believe in Jesus they would have to sit through it again.

Funny stuff.