Editor, Times-Dispatch: While driving through the West End, I came across a bumper sticker on a Volvo sedan that quite frankly has distressed me beyond comprehension. The bumper sticker read: “The road to Hell is paved with Republicans.” I couldn’t believe what I read. It rocked my soul to its depth.
Being in my mid-40s, I have come to dread the election process. The smear campaigns from both parties, the finger-pointing, and the retaliations have made me appreciate the mute button on the remote. I have voted for both Democrats and Republicans since I was 18. But I don’t believe I have ever been more offended by a statement made during an election. It is my constitutional right as an American citizen to vote for whomever I want. But to be condemned to Hell for making a particular choice borders on the ideas of a sadistic cult-like following. This statement also crosses the line between church and state. One has to believe in Hell to condemn people to go there. When I went to church recently, I prayed that the driver of the Volvo would see the light. Regardless of how I choose to vote, I will try to lead my life accepting those with different views and opinions. And I absolutely won’t wish them an afterlife of Purgatory. Andrea Junes Baker. richmond.
Response from our special ‘Guest Writer’…
Dear Ms. Baker,
During our routine monitoring of the Earthly realm for matters that concern the Great One, I ran across your letter to the editor published in the Richmond Times-Dispatch. I regret to inform you that, despite your fervent prayers, you are, indeed, going to Hell. But, not because you recently are planning to vote Republican, but because you’ve confused Purgatory and That Place Down Below. Two different things. Actually, Vatican II rid Christianity of that Purgatory concept. Hell, however, is alive and well.
Moreover, your inability to decipher the actual meaning of the bumper sticker you saw will subtract even more points from your Heavenly Admission’s Quotient. You see, while the intended meaning of the phrase “The road to hell is paved with Republicans” may be “Republicans are going to lead us to hell,” the words themselves actually mean “The process that leads us to hell is going to involve disposing of a lot of Republicans.” I think a better way of saying it is: “The road to hell was paved by Republicans.”
Actually, I’m joking. Your lack of ecclesiastical knowledge and English usage won’t ban you from Heaven. But, unfortunately, your belief that a bumper sticker can accomplish that task might just make it happen. You see, if your faith is so weak that some sticker on the back of a car is going to shake it up, I’m just not seeing a whole lot of future for your soul. Maybe a pilgrimage to your choice of Christian Holy Site or a purchase of some relics may save you. For rates on either of these useful ideas, please say a small prayer tonight and I’ll make sure the information is sent to you via Heavenly Courier.
I hope you accept this letter in the helpful spirit that it was intended.
Fafferopides V. Lithwaitte
Second Angel for Questions of Heavenly Admission