Saturday, January 11, 2014
The Doorstep Cross-Examination
I've been told by a certain household member that having a discussion with me is like being cross-examined on the witness stand. While I don't entirely agree, I have been known to take a rather direct approach to piercing bafflegab.
One of the most baffling varieties is literal adherence to the words of a religious text, whether it's the Bible or the Buddhist canon.
Although I usually just bite my tongue, nod and smile pleasantly (assuming I've been trapped and didn't have a chance to escape first), occasionally a demon possesses me to jump in with both feet.
This was one of those times.
Two or three members of a religious group showed up at my door and wondered if they could invite themselves inside to tell me something important. I had a bit of time to spare, but not that much, so I engaged them on the doorstep. I'm afraid what followed was essentially a cross-examination.
Q: You folks believe in the literal interpretation of the Bible, don't you?
Q: Every word in the Bible is true, right?
Q: So in the beginning, Adam and Eve were the only people on the earth, weren't they?
Q: Then they had two sons, Cain and Abel, right?
A: That's right.
Q: Then Cain slew Abel?
Q: Then, the Bible says, Cain took a wife, correct?
Q: Sooo... Where did his wife come from?
A: Adam and Eve had more children.
Q: Oh. You mean Cain married his sister?
Q: But I thought the Bible says incest is a sin?
A: Well, God made an exception in Adam and Eve's time. It became a sin later.
Q: I see.
Soundly defeated, I nodded, smiled sweetly and wished them a nice day.
[Note to self: Remember law school? Courtroom 101? Never ask a question you don't know the answer to?]