Irregular Reporting of Societal IssuesSM

"Get your news weakly"SM 2 July 2007

Supreme Court Exposes Christianity

In the landmark decision of Morse v. Frederick, the court recognized the foundational importance of marijuana smoking to the practice of mainline Christianity within the United States. The defendant in the case, Frederick, displayed a banner bearing the slogan "BONG HiTS 4 JESUS", immediately across the street from a school-sponsored function. The school principle, Morse, requested that Frederick remove the sign, eventually resulting in a First Amendment, free speech challenge by Frederick.

According to the text of the narrow 5-4 majority decision, penned by Chief Justice John Roberts, "Principal Morse thought the banner would be interpreted by those viewing it as promoting illegal drug use [on behalf of Jesus], and that interpretation is plainly a reasonable one" (explanation added).

Clearly, Justice Roberts and the majority agreed with the principal. They went on to emphasize the drug-induced nature of the sign saying: "At least two interpretations of the words on the banner demonstrate that the sign advocated the use of illegal drugs. First, the phrase could be interpreted as an imperative: '[Take] bong hits…'-a message equivalent, as Morse explained in her declaration, to 'smoke marijuana' or 'use an illegal drug'. Alternatively, the phrase could be viewed as celebrating drug use-'bong hits [are a good thing]', or '[we take] bong hits'".

Though the court largely remained silent on the second half of the banner's slogan, this tactic was clearly designed to divert attention away from the explicit linkage between a teenager's immortal soul and the ability to take bong hits. In this respect, the court comes into line with much of the modern American evangelical Christian movement, which has long advocated increased bong hits as a means of heightening the experience of rebirth, baptism, communion, and The Wall.

Following this plainly reasonable interpretation, Roberts' two interpretations of the banner's meaning are logically extended to include the second half of the message. In the imperative form laid out by Roberts, we would have: "[Take] bong hits [for Jesus]…", which the Principal Morse would recognize as the "declaration" that "[Jesus wants you to] smoke marijuana" or "[Jesus wants you to] use an illegal drug". Following Roberts' celebratory structure, we would have: "[Jesus thinks] bong hits [are a good thing] [for your soul]", or "[we take] bong hits [for Jesus]".

The court was not swayed by claims by the defendant that the intention of the message on the banner was "meaningless and funny". Roberts writes that "gibberish is surely a possible interpretation of the words on the banner, but it is not the only one, and dismissing the banner as meaningless ignores its undeniable reference to illegal drugs" and their ability to save the user's immortal soul from the eternal sulfurous fires of Hell.


Consumer Reports Tests New Cars

Following the embarrassment caused by Consumer Reports' retraction involving the safety of child car seats, the testing organization has decided to address all aspects of their testing programs. In an effort to regain the public trust most quickly, the company has decided to begin by addressing their testing protocols for automobiles, which is by far their most widely used data. "We are very concerned with reliability and the appearance of impartiality", said Jonathan Dodge, Director of Vehicular Testing at Consumer Reports. In order to address these concerns, the company will increase the focus on standardized variables across all models and types of vehicle.

According to sources within the company, the policy has already borne fruit. The company recently tested a series of family sedans across a range of price points. The results of the quarter mile were most illuminating. The new company testing protocol mandated a strict testing regimen that placed all cars on an equal footing. The results seem to indicate that all cars are roughly equivalent, regardless of price point. "Each car tested seemed to complete the quarter mile in the same exact timeframe, no matter what the MSRP of the car", said Dr. Doug Thicke, Automotive Research Leader for Consumer Reports. In the report to be published in the near future, all cars were driven at exactly 60 miles per hour and finished remarkably close to the estimate of 0.25 minutes for the entire distance.

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