Wednesday, November 6, 2013

obama and caligula

"We are doing what the Roman Empire did right before it Collapsed"

 no obama is doing this

Last edited Thu Mar 28, 2013, 01:30 PM USA/ET - Edit history (22)
Stated by some wing-nut on TV who didn't care for marriage equality.

This ubiquitous right-wing wisdom is extra amusing because in addition to being a tired chicken-little cliche that has been applied to everything from mini-skirts to fluoridation, it is hopelessly ass-backward as history.

Everything these chowder-heads identify with the fall of Rome (OMG, Caligula!1!!) is from early Roman history... stuff that happened before the Roman Empire even reached its greatest power on the way up. The most notable thing the Roman empire actually did right before collapsing was to make Christianity the state religion. I don't say that to suggest that Christianity was to blame (though Gibbon certainly seemed to think so), just reciting actual history.

Unlike this guy...

Roberto De Mattei, 63, the deputy head of the country's National Research Council, claimed that the empire was fatally weakened after conquering Carthage, which he described as "a paradise for homosexuals"... The fall of the Roman Empire was a result of "the effeminacy of a few in Carthage, a paradise for homosexuals, who infected the many. The abhorrent presence of a few gays infected a good part of the (Roman) people," Prof Mattei told Radio Maria, a Catholic radio station.

The last Punic war ended 146 BC. Rome was sacked in 410 AD. So that creeping Carthaginian gayness infected and destroyed Rome in a mere 556 years. Of course, not many empires have ever lasted as long as 556 years, so teh gay could more plausibly be cited to explain Rome's striking longevity.

(We can say that Rome fell in 410, or as late as 476, when the last Emperor of the Western Roman Empire was deposed by Odoacer, a Germanic chieftain. But the 410 first sacking of Rome by 'barbarians' is a usual date.)

Oliver North was always fond of pointing out that Caligula brought down the Roman Empire by debasing marriage with his incestuous depravity. Let's see... Caligula died in 41 AD and Rome fell in 410 AD. What is 369 years one way or another? Sure, that's way longer than the USA has been around. But math is for commies.

Nero? A depraved fellow by most accounts, but he was emperor from 54 AD to 68 AD. The big fire in Rome (which he did not start, by the way) was not the end of Rome, or even within 300 years of the end of Rome. It was an event in a city on the way up. Most of the architectural "grandeur that was Rome" came later. (The Coliseum broke ground in 70 AD) Blaming Nero for the fall of Rome is like blaming the stock market crash of 1987 on Ben Franklin's womanizing.

In 380 A. D., Emperor Theodosius I made the Christian Nicene Creed (never identified as a notably gay set of beliefs, and without a hint of marriage equality) the mandatory religion of the Roman Empire.

And thirty years later the barbarians were hauling off the statues.

But it had to be teh gay.

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