Perhaps disappointed and bemused with the incessant bickering, backbiting and slandering, God finally agreed to set the record straight about the proposed Ground Zero Mosque in an exclusive interview with Katie Couric. Due to obvious security concerns--and because God's image or voice could not be recorded--the following transcripts would have to suffice as evidence of the interview.
DISCLAIMER: This didn't actually happen.
KC: God, first let me say what an honor and privilege it is to have you on my show. I was stunned when our producers said you agreed to come speak with me. And then I thought, wow, Christopher Hitchens will never believe this.
G: (smiling and shaking head) No, Katie, I'm afraid he won't.
KC: Really, such a delight. It was almost as surprising as getting that Sarah Palin interview during the 2008 presidential elections. By the way, I'm not sure I ever thanked you for that. It really helped my career.
G: Katie, my dear child, when have I ever turned down a request from you? KC: Like, never? (collapses in laughter)
G: And you did a wonderful job in that interview by the way. I especially liked it when you asked Sarah what magazines and newspapers she read to stay informed. Truly inspired moment, I must say.
KC: Why thank you. I can't remember for the life of me where that question came from. (giggling) It was like it came out of no-- oh wait...
KC: You mean, that was you? Oh God, I mean. Wow. That was incredible!
G: You're welcome.
KC: Ok, since we have a limited amount of time today...
G: Actually, I have all the time in the world. Eternity, in fact. Take your time.
KC: You're right, actually, I should say WE don't have much time to break this story before someone else... (looking off stage at producers)
G: Are you competing for my attention Katie?
KC: No it's just that ... well I wondered if maybe you might be talking with Roland Martin or God forbid, Barbara Walters. Oops I'm sorry I keep using your name don't I? G: It's OK, Katie, as long as you don't use it to demonize others, elevate yourself or Lord it over anyone. (God doubles over laughing) Did I say "Lord?" Yes I did.. KC: (laughing uncomfortably)
G: And just for the record, the only other interview that might have trumped you was if that Hitchens fellow had a change of heart ... and well that hasn't happened ... yet. Must have been very disappointing for Rolling Stone.
KC: Oh, my...
G: I'm sorry dear child you wanted to ask me about this Ground Zero Mosque business? Go ahead, I'm listening.
KC: Yes, God. Can you tell our viewers, I mean listeners, or ... readers rather, how it makes you feel that an Islamic Mosque will be built just a few blocks away from Ground Zero where so many people died?
G: How it makes me feel Katie? Explain the question.
KC: Yes, of course. Does it feel disrespectful to you?
G: In what way Katie? What has any of this has to do with me?
KC: Well the terrorists who crashed the planes into the World Trade Center were identified as Islamic fundamentalists and now the Islamic community wants to build a mosque down the street. Doesn't that feel, well, disrespectful?
G: My understanding is that the Mosque is being built so that families can gather in prayer and meditation and as a way of teaching tolerance so no, it doesn't seem disrespectful. Again, Katie I'm not sure what any of this has to do with me exactly?
KC: Well, I mean...
G: Look, I realize I'm not the award winning journalist here but how about if I ask you a few questions, would that be alright?
KC: Oh, God, of course. I mean, yes.
G: Ok, let's just say that somehow it was possible for one religious organization to represent me and that I favored one religion over another--which of course I don't.
G: But just for the sake of a journalistic discussion, what religion would that be?
KC: I'm pretty familiar with Catholicism, so let's just say Christianity?
G: Good. That's honest. KC: I always try to be.
G: Good girl, Katie. So how do you feel about the Crusades and the Inquisition? Are all Christians murderers, marauders and thieves because of terrorist acts committed by extremist groups hiding behind a moniker of "Christianity?" KC: Well God, first of all you know I have no objection to a mosque myself, but as a journalist this doesn't seem like a fair comparison. I mean, the Crusades were a long time ago and...
G: Eternity Katie, remember eternity. But since this concept is difficult for you, I'll try giving a more recent example. Ok, How about that McVeigh boy who blew up that Federal building in Oklahoma City? Is that recent enough? He was an extremist Christian and belonged to that militia group and, if I'm not mistaken, he was one of your Catholics wasn't he? And he was white too. Now I'll be honest, I don't watch a lot of news--too depressing--but I don't remember anyone protesting all Catholic structures built within the vicinity of all Federal buildings or indicting all Christians because of what happened. And I especially don't recall a condemnation of all white christian males because of what a few rogue individuals did.
G: And what about all these Catholic priests molesting thousands of children all while wearing robes--and mostly white men, I've noticed. Does that make all those who profess to be Catholic pedophiles?
KC: Well, but...
G: There has been much pain and suffering because of these Catholic priests. Lots of broken dreams. Some even ended their lives. How is this so different?
KC: I mean, is it really the same? Many people are afraid that Islam is the religion of hatred and...
G: (clapping hands) Yes, exactly.
KC: Yes, what?
G: You just hit the proverbial nail on the cross (laughs)--so to speak. Many people are afraid. And that is what this is all about. This has nothing to do with me or Christianity or Islam or Buddhism or any other brand of Religion my children have invented--in my name--to help them find purpose in their lives.
Islam and Christianity and Buddhism are all the same. And as best as I can tell, the basic tenets of all three include peace, forgiveness and mercy--which all seems fairly harmless to me. Those men who blew up those twin towers are just as lost as those Catholic priests who defiled those children. And none of it has anything to do with me. But everyone wants to make this politicallly dramatic and frankly more complex when it is fairly simple.
KC: How so?
G: Because as I said, this is about fear and making oneself exceptional in order to quell the fear. Period.
G: Think about it Katie, What makes you different from Sarah Palin?
KC: God, I'm not sure that's a fair question.
KC: Well, a lot of things I suppose. Ok, first of all, I have my own news show.
G: C'mon Katie. No disrespect but everyone and their sister has a blog, internet radio or a TV talk show these days. And doesn't she (Sarah) have a show on that Fox channel now?
KC: Yeah, you're right. Well, ok I'm well read and I know what's going on in the world. G: And you feel good about that right?
KC: Well yeah, but..
G: And somehow your differences make you what?
KC: Well, educated for one.
G: Kaaaatie. And feeling more educated makes you feel what?
KC: Better? And well ... "special," I guess.
G: That's right. And when you feel special you maybe feel what?
KC: Closer to ... God, I mean, you.
G: Ok, now we're getting somewhere. Making yourself feel special is the easiest way to justify demonizing 'others'--other races, other classes, other political parties, other religions and the list goes on and on. And all of these things you humans have created for yourselves simply because you are afraid that if you don't differentiate yourselves--by demonizing others--then perhaps you will not be special in my eyes. Am I right?
KC: Maybe, I suppose. Apart from those who don't believe in you.
G: True. And unfortunately there are those who take it to extremes. And these extremists whether involved in the Crusades, pedophilia, the World Trade Center bombing or that Tea Party business try to distinguish themselves as 'special' in order to justify lack of compassion and sometimes unspeakable acts--and very often, in my name. KC: I mean could it really be that simple?
G: Isn't it that simple?
KC: (momentary pause) I don't know ... maybe you are right. Oh my God, what if you are right?
G: (smiling benevolently) OMG indeed, Katie. And it doesn't just apply to all this religious nonsense either Katie. White folks have especially gone crazy with this whole 'special' notion. Who knew they could drag it on for 500 years--and then some.
KC: So God, now you have me wondering about something. That interview I did with Sarah Palin for example, was I somehow trying to make myself special by exposing her lack of intelligence?
G: You tell me.
KC: Wow. I'm sorry about that.
G: You're forgiven. To be perfectly honest, she's been a pretty loose cannon with my name these past few years and I'd be lying if I said I didn't have a little chuckle. Besides, Barack needed some help. Some of those crazy Fundamentalists were about to feed him to the lions. (deep belly laugh)
KC: (shocked) But...
G: Relax Katie, I'm kidding. Besides, in spite of your interview, Sarah managed to survive quite well didn't she?
KC: (Perplexed) Oh Dear God, it looks like we are out of time. G: What did I tell you about time Katie?
KC: I mean....my eternal gratitude for your appearance today.
G: That's better. It has been my pleasure. And please do me a favor would you?
KC: Oh God, anything.
G: Say hello to that Hitchens fellow for me. He's hit a bit of a rough patch and frankly, he's a little hard to get to. But he's a good man and a brilliant journalist who asks excellent questions (chuckle)--which, come to think of it, is actually why he's so hard to reach.
KC: A better journalist than me?
G: Ah, there you go with that special thing again. I can see this is going to be a tough habit for you to break.
KC: Oops, sorry God. Thanks for joining us. We are eternally grateful.
G: Good girl. I think you're starting to get it.
Molly Secours is a writer/filmmaker and speaker in Nashville TN who has the utmost respect for religious freedoms and Katie Couric. Secours can be found at www.mollysecours.com