Stuff that is BUGGING ME today, July 12.

Illegal Pot Invades California’s Deserts, Bringing Violence, Fear, Ecological Destruction, the LA Times tells us – But wait, you say, marijuana is LEGAL in California now. Wasn’t that legality supposed to get rid of the environmentally problematic and dangerous and gang-controlled illegal-pot farms? Hasn’t. Because they simply undercut the prices of the legal outfits. It’s distressing. It pisses me off. Not only in deserts, but in forests in many states, marijuana farms, many of them run by cartels, are poisoning the woodlands with pesticides, herbicides, and trash. They’re tearing up trees and natural undergrowth…And these outfits, in competition, attract violence. Dead men are sometimes found out there, as a result of illegal pot “wars”.

Speaking of violence…A powerful new church is fomenting violence. As per the Washington Post: “A new and rapidly growing Christian movement is openly political, wants a nation under God’s authority, and is central to Donald Trump’s GOP” … Weirdly and ironically called MERCY CULTURE, the church wants an end to the separation of church and state, wants right-wing evangelical Christianity installed (rather like The Handmaid’s Tale) to run the country. That’s right, they want a Christian theocracy.

“The church is called Mercy Culture, and it is part of a growing Christian movement that is nondenominational, openly political and has become an engine of former president Donald Trump’s Republican Party. . .It includes some of the largest congregations in the nation, housed in the husks of old Baptist churches, former big-box stores and sprawling multimillion-dollar buildings with private security to direct traffic on Sundays.” The Mercy Culture preacher inflames fear and pushes his followers into confrontation with the “seductive, political, demonic, power-hungry spirit that uses witchcraft to control God’s people…Beware of a world that preaches toleration of things God does not tolerate.” Imagine these people taking control by violence or through congressional theocratic fanatics. Imagine how they would treat America’s non-Christians–Muslims, Buddhists, Hindus, non-Christian native-Americans, atheists. Imagine how they would deal with doubters and critics. They are dominionists, believers in an imminent end of the world and Judgment Day. Suppose they install a dominionist President? Suppose he or she decides that God wants him or her to start a nuclear war?

Imagine how they might take over. Heavily armed far-right Christian militias. From the Washington Post article: “There were always prayer nights for the cause, including one where church members laid hands on Fort Worth’s sheriff, who sat with a Bible in his lap and said that the problem was “the demonic battle of our lifetime” and told those gathered that “you are the warriors in that battle.”