Saturday, 10 January 2015

Horror Writing, Religion, Ethics and Life

It's been quite a few weeks for me personally, and for the everyone globally. My first grandson was born and he is beautiful, amazing, gorgeous and completely adorable. He has two incredible big sisters  that love him to pieces and are quite amazing in their own way. The birth was horribly traumatic for my daughter. There were times I could have easily stabbed someone in the throat. No one in particular. Just anyone. Birth is not a good process. Not by a long shot. It is barbaric and mutilating. My daughter is incredibly strong. Much more strong than she gives herself credit for. So congratulations my love, my baby girl. You have a great family.

Then, within a few days terrorism rears its ugly head in Paris. Canada had its own run in with this new form of expression in the name of God, but here we are still debating whether these men were mentally ill or terrorists. Either way, I really don't care. The ones in Canada and the ones in France that shot down people for whatever myopic reason, are the worst brand of cowards. 

To shoot someone, or run them over because you are offended is ignorant, wrong and speaks to the lowest common denominator of human civilization. What everyone seems to forget in all the outrage, debate and my-religion-is-better-than-your-religion speech is this isn't about religion. This is about ethics, morals and values and all three are missing from anyone who engages in the killing of men, women and children in the name of any God. I don't care what religion you belong to: If your mandate is to kill someone because of their gender, rape, torture, subjugate, devalue, stone, mutilate, hide, or cover them up because you cannot control yourself, the problem is with you. 

If your sole purpose is to dehumanize someone for the colour of their skin, mutilate their genitals, have them-and-us rules, spew hatred and filth because they choose to love the same gendered person, the problem is ethics and morals. 

If your dogma is to torture children, to withold food, love, education and belittle them for being kids, kill them while performing exorcisms, you lack a conscious and ethics.

The message is simple: Ethics are what you are born with and what you will allow based on a belief system. You do not get it from a religion. And if your religion includes killing anyone, or the torture of people or animals, you are morally vacuous. 

Organized religions serve a purpose, but they are organized by a patriarcal system of archaic beliefs based on somone's interpretation on what someone else thinks. That is great if that includes love, faith, comfort, and the aid of all mankind. But, torture, death, abuse. That is ignorant, myopic, insipid and inane. 

What has this got to do with horror? For me, this is why I write horror. I write crazy, improbable things to deal with the insanity in the world, to find an ounce of redemption in what I consider the downfall of intelligence and degradation of people. In my writing, I control what happens to the characters, good, bad or indifferent. I can put on my rose coloured glasses and make the world decent...or blow it up. But I have a choice, and control. And I chose to shut out what is happening, to retreat in my own mind where kids are loved, women are strong, and the good guys sometimes win.