Every adolescent knows: Oppressive piety invites defiant impiety.
If you are pious, you believe oppression is a necessary means to protect what deserves piety. But to those subjected to the oppression, it is obvious that it is the piety that is the means. Oppression is the real end. Piety justifies use of coercion, and enables the oppressor to enjoy self-righteous abuse of power.
Impiety is a vehicle for defiance of oppression. The impious content is secondary. What matters is the performative “fuck you” to those who use piety as justification for oppression.
Of course, the pious can only see defiance as a hatred of what deserves piety — morality, justice, compassion and so on. They see it this way and this way only. Permitting alternative views or irony or humor introduces the risk of seeing the ruse from the outside, which would puncture all delusions of moral superiority.
I think most people understand this to some degree. We can all sort of recall how it was to be a teenager. Some of us still identify with our teenage rebellion, and even believe that we are still rebellious, despite all evidence to the contrary. If, when corporations unite to celebrate your rebellion you bask in their approval and feel renewed inspiration to continue your personal journey to self-acceptance — or if you need everyone to unanimously affirm your rebellion or you melt into a puddle of trauma tears — sorry dude, you are the furthest thing from a rebel. How could anyone be so stupid and self-oblivious to miss that?
Here is how: Power is sneaky.
The smarter we are, the sneakier we get.
The world is currently faced with a piety with the sneakiest meta moves ever devised by our sneaky, pious species.
Imagine an oppressive piety obsessed with… opposing oppression and piety.
Now imagine a defiant impiety toward this oppressive piety of anti-oppression/anti-piety.
Pious impiety and oppressive anti-oppression versus impious piety and defiant anti-anti-oppression.
This meta layer has effectively confused the majority of our (mis)educated population.
The pious impious run around shitting on and tearing down everything formerly considered sacred in former times, and if someone gets uppity and refuses to conform with the defilement, they are scarlet lettered and shunned by the community. These people refuse to be named, but I call them Proggos, because that it a silly, unpleasant word perfectly suited for silly, unpleasant people.
Meanwhile the impious pious run around defiantly affirming the sacrality of everything the Proggos hate, most of all sacred traditions, which is why these people are commonly called Trads. These Trads compulsively disregard all the moral rule Proggos impose and enforce, even that 75% that’s actually decent and good, and even the 50% espoused by their own sacred traditions. But Trads are not sincere in any of their affirmations. They affirm only to negate. They care nothing about sacredness — only saying “fuck you” in the most offensive manner they can find, and that has turned out to be the Apostle’s Creed.
So basically these pious impious Proggos and these impious pious Trads share something in common: a total disregard for sacredness. One desecrates with sincere contempt and the other desecrates with disingenuous reverence.