Sod ’em and begorrah

Following up Zinnia’s links on my earlier post, I found this mildly interesting article, I was born this way, from the Jamaican Gleaner in 2001.

More fascinating was the comments page.

There’s an initially amusing flame war between TT and Saleem and his girlfriend, before the online casino comment spam takes over. The page was still loading after 15 minutes.

However, what first struck me on reading the comments were the abusive ALL CAPS and PLANE IGNERNCE on display. People bashing the Bible trying to cite precedence without even being able to spell Gomorrah (Sodom’s easy).

Darn! Why couldn’t God’ve chosen an easier town to destroy, like … LA?

Let’s check out the scripture, shall we?

To bring you up to speed, God tells Abraham that he’s anxious about what’s going down in the cities of the plains. He says they’re doing bad stuff, sin and the like and that he’s going to send in a couple of divine messengers for a recce. The two messengers are met at the city gate of Sodom by Lot, who tries to convince them to take shelter from his brutal fellow citizens.

Genesis 19:
3 And he pressed upon them greatly; and they turned in unto him, and entered into his house; and he made them a feast, and did bake unleavened bread, and they did eat.
4 But before they lay down, the men of the city, even the men of Sodom, compassed the house round, both old and young, all the people from every quarter:
5 And they called unto Lot, and said unto him, Where are the men which came in to thee this night? bring them out unto us, that we may know them.

The key word here, of course, is “know”. Most interpret it to mean “have sex with”, which will put a twinkle in your eye the next time you hear

Darling, do you know Mr Kawazumi, our new IT man?
How well do you really know someone?
Knowing me, knowing you, Ah-ha!

Elsewhere in the Bible, the sins of Sodom are more explicit.

Ezekiel 16:
49 Behold, this was the iniquity of thy sister Sodom, pride, fulness of bread, and abundance of idleness was in her and in her daughters, neither did she strengthen the hand of the poor and needy.
50 And they were haughty, and committed abomination before me: therefore I took them away as I saw good.

Oh dear. Not just the queers then.

The Babylonian Talmud, recounts even more specific examples of the wickedness of Sodom.

There were four judges in Sodom named Shakrai (Liar), Shakurai (Awful Liar), Zayyafi (Forger), and Mazle Dina (Perverter of Justice). Now if a man assaulted his neighbour’s wife and bruised her, they would say to the husband, Give her to him, that she may become pregnant for thee. If one cut off the ear of his neighbour’s ass, they would order, Give it to him until it grows again.

If one wounded his neighbour they would say to the victim, Give him a fee for bleeding thee [bloodletting was sometimes considered medically beneficial in those days; here the Sodomite judge ruled that if you are beaten until you bleed, you owe your attacker money for this medical service].

… they had beds upon which travellers slept. If the guest was too long they shortened him by lopping off his feet; if too short, they stretched him out …

If a poor man happened to come there, every resident gave him a denar [coin], upon which he wrote his name, but no bread was given [the store owners recognized such coins, and refused to accept them]. When he died, each came and took back his denar.

Sanhedrin 109a

Alrighty, we get the picture, but let’s get back to our latter-day hero, Lot, played by … I’m seeing Harrison Ford here.

What does Lot do, faced with the mob surrounding his house, baying for his guests?

And Lot went out at the door unto them, and shut the door after him, And said, I pray you, brethren, do not so wickedly. Behold now, I have two daughters which have not known man; let me, I pray you, bring them out unto you, and do ye to them as is good in your eyes: only unto these men do nothing; for therefore came they under the shadow of my roof.

Niiiice. In the name of hospitality, throw your virgin daughters to the gang bangers. God’s truth.

Oy vey!

6 thoughts on “Sod ’em and begorrah”

  1. Ria, your blog just gets better and better. I’m so loving it at the moment – just thought I’d let you know! I want to go to Jamaica too!

    Also wanted to let you know that for some reason, some of the words on the left hand side of the page disappear, which is a bit of a gutter, as I can’t make out the song lyris you posted a few days ago….

  2. Oops. Forgot to check it in IE. (Get Firefox!) Odd how it gets worse down the page, as if it’s sliding diagonally.

    Better now?

    Still seems to screw up the left indent sometimes. Repeated reloading makes it better, which is as subtle as giving the telly a good whack with the flat of your hand. But it works.

    Er … not.

    Help, anyone?

    ***update***
    Problem fixed. It was a variant on the double-margin IE bug.

  3. Interesting too is the symbolic value of bread. Lot offered unleavened bread (good); the evil ones ate risen bread (bad). So bad, in fact, that it is on par with other “abominations”. Consequence? Burn the buggers and the burgers.

    And don’t get me started on Leviticus 18 … Grrrr.

    I been a lady up to now, don’t know how much more I can take
    Queens shouldn’t swing if you know what I mean
    But I’m bout to take my rings off, get me some vaseline

    – Jill Scott

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