Here is an open letter to the handful of critics who object to “all that religious stuff” in my Bell Mountain series. I write with all the respect I can muster for their opinion.
Dear Ignorant Peabrains:
It has probably escaped your notice that, except for the little corner of our own present age occupied by radical secularists, there has never been a human culture without “religious stuff.” There has never been an atheist civilization. So if I’m going to write realistically about human beings, even in a fantasy, “religious stuff” must be included in their way of life. To leave it out would be to amputate a big chunk of who they are.
Yes, I knew we find hardly a trace of “religious stuff” in contemporary fiction of all kinds. That’s because those works are produced by only a microscopic portion of the general population. Those works also conform to certain conventions that no one ever questions.
One of those conventions is to ignore the religious dimension of human life. Whether one is producing a sitcom, a movie screenplay, a detective story, or any kind of fiction whatsoever, one leaves out “religion.” After all, eternal truths and immutable moral laws might offend some thin-skinned dork out there. The American Library Association, the teachers’ unions, and Scholastic Books won’t like it: that’s for sure.
I’ve chosen to ignore that particular convention. The civilization I write about is inhabited by people for whom religion is an important part of daily life. That is, the lives of my fantasy characters conform to a virtually universal characteristic of the human race. In that respect my fantasies are more realistic than the goings-on at any Democrat dum-dum on TV.
I daresay my Bell Mountain fantasy world, for all its faults, is a far sight better than the prison-world you’re constructing for America, in which the devouring state is the god and crooked, mad, and wicked politicians are its prophets–where “diversity” means a coerced uniformity of opinion, and “inclusion” means the exclusion of everyone and everything that won’t conform.
Do us all a favor, and exclude yourselves.