Saturday, April 26, 2008

Utah State Tax Dollars At Work.

This article (Zuccetto Spin to JS) is from the official student newspaper of my alma mater, the University of Utah, The Daily Utah Chronicle:

Red Herring: Wizard King ends tour of U.S.
Orion Archibald
Issue date: 4/23/08
Editor's note: The following column is a satirical piece and does not represent the views of The Daily Utah Chronicle.
Move over Gandalf: There's a new wizard in town!
Ending a week-long tour of the eastern United States, the Grand Magical Wizard King -- known to mystics by his native wizard title "Pope Benedict" -- held what many in attendance could describe as "a magical event" inside Yankee Stadium.
The ceremony, hailed by the Wizard King's followers as a "mass," sought to bestow the powers of the Magical Wizard King and his apprentices onto the lay followers gathered within the stadium, bringing to a close several days' worth of magical powers and spells cast by the Wizard King in both Washington, D.C., and New York City.
First citing the magical word "Alleluia," the Wizard King channeled the combined auras of those at Yankee Stadium through a guided series of chants and "prayers" to pay homage to the Wizard King's deceased grand master, the Omnipotent Grand Master Wizard King of the Universe -- referred to frequently by the Wizard King as "Jesus Christ."
With the help of his Wizard Apprentices and several young mages-in-training, the Wizard King cast his magical spell over the several thousand wafer crackers and thimbles of wine distributed to those in attendance. On-lookers, as though by routine, consumed the foods, allowing the Wizard King's magical powers to "spread through their bodies" and "clean their souls," according to several eye-witness accounts."
I'd heard of this Wizard King before," said John Daley, a construction worker from Brooklyn, N.Y. "But when I felt the magical power of his words mixing into these crackers, I knew he was a tried and true wizard supreme."
Although there were no fireworks or displays of the Wizard King's ability to summon lightning bolts, electric power blasts or other assorted sorceries through his wizard staff, he recited many passages alluding to a great forthcoming conflict between his Grand Wizard Coalition and that of a sinister Dark Sorcerer King of the Underworld. His master, the Wizard King noted, had defeated the Dark Sorcerer before in fair magical wizard combat, but the lay people of this land must prepare for "Round Two".
He's a sneaky devil, but we must prepare all peoples to combat him in their daily, non-magical lives," the Wizard King said.
To preserve the remainder of his magical powers -- which the Wizard King assured would be used to fight the heralds of Magicks ranging from Poverty to Famine -- the Wizard King was promptly shuttled from the ceremony in his specially crafted hyperbaric, magical white Mercedes."
Like he was riding a modern day white steed onto the rainbow sky bridge back to his grand wizard castle, or so I'm told," Daley said.
The Wizard King's chamber, prepared atop a standard Mercedes M Class, is designed to boost the Wizard King's powers by preventing swarms of lay persons from stealing the powers granted by his long white robes and pointed hat, while simultaneously dispelling the magical power of boomsticks fired point blank at the Wizard King's body.
In a statement delivered by the Wizard King's press corps, he thanked the people of the Americas and promised to "continue to train others in the magical powers bestowed by our Omnipotent Grand Master Wizard King of the Universe." The worldwide wizard training is to include lessons given at various Wizard Training Castles, or "cathedrals," throughout the known world, in topics ranging from magical chants to staff fighting to wizard gamesmanship to converting alms and donated moneys into magic powers, culminating in the ability to transfer massive amounts of guilt and mental suffering onto the various people of the land.
Although it is unclear when the Wizard King is set to return to the United States, one thing is for certain: His magical presence won't be forgotten any time soon."
I've felt a massive hole in my life for several years," Daley said. "Now, with the Wizard King's help, I can fill that hole by purging myself of the continual guilt I suddenly feel in my life -- with the help of his magical spells, of course."

(Please note that this was originally published without the editor's disclaimer and the byline is a pseudonym.)

To call this ham-handed effort satire is to dignify rantings that would embarrass most high school atheists. I would expect better logic from writers at a major university. I would also expect better editorial judgment. Somehow I doubt they would have published a similar attack on the Dalai Lama (or even Tom Cruise). But we must remember that Christians in general and Catholics in particular are not worthy of respect let alone courtesy in academic America.

UPDATE: (also courtesy of JS)

It seems that in the same issue we are told that: Residence Halls To Offer Diversity Education. Think the Chronicle staff will sign-up for it or that it would do any good? I don't either.
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