An argument in favour of exorcisms – ‘in the spirit’ of Margaret Court

I’ve used this technique before, but I think Margaret Court’s latest rant on homosexuals and same-sex marriage in today’s Herald-Sun warrants another reality check.

Sometimes a different ‘spin’ on an argument helps us recognise just how cruel, outdated, hateful, ignorant and just plan batshit crazy it is.

In the following article, based on Margaret Court’s opinion piece in the Herald-Sun, the words highlighted in red are mine, and not Margaret Court’s.

I have used the basic structure and logic of Court’s  article, not to argue against homosexuals and same-sex marriage (as she does in the original) but, in this case, to argue in favour of treating mental illness with exorcisms (as carried out by Jesus).  If this seems a rather bizarre idea, remember that exorcisms are still performed today and that, not so long ago, Hillsong-aligned Mercy Ministries was exposed for conducting exorcisms on young, vulnerable girls admitted to their program with the promise of comprehensive medical and psychological support for depression and eating disorders.

The Herald-Sun should be ashamed for printing this disgusting drivel from Mrs Court.  Mrs Court has every right to her obscene opinions, but the Herald-Sun has no more obligation to give her a platform for her views than some raving racist who wants to tell the world that Indigenous Australians are biologically inferior to caucasians, or that all Muslims are terrorists.  By giving Mrs Court a forum, the Herald-Sun is complicit in adding to an anti-gay culture which results in unacceptably high rates of youth suicide, self-abuse, self-harm, psychological distress, alcoholism and drug abuse.  They should be ashamed.

If you’re as disgusted as I am, contact the Herald Sun and direct your remarks to the editor:

Phone: (03) 9292 1226
Fax: (03) 9292 2112

An argument in favour of exorcisms ‘in the spirit’ of Margaret Court

Court’s original argument against homosexuals and same-sex marriage is here.

NB: This is a satirical re-write of an article by Margaret Court. Words marked in red are mine.

Matthew 17:14-18: “There came to him a certain man, kneeling down to him, and saying, Lord, have mercy on my son: for he is lunatick, and sore vexed…And Jesus rebuked the devil “

WE live in a blessed nation but Australia is on a steep moral decline.

Everywhere you look we are making excuses for a sliding lifestyle and more people are blind to it than ever before.

Our Constitution is based on biblical principles and our nation is great because of it.

We are a country with a moral fabric and families … But increasingly our kids are being taught that anything goes. Today, more and more Australians are afflicted with mental illness, and, as the Bible tells us, this is not due to chemical imbalances in the brain, or psychological trauma, but demon possession.

As a society we are losing touch with fundamental Christian values, as our leaders lean towards an agenda of political correctness, spreading the myth that mental illness is something other than a punishment for one’s sins or spiritual weakness.

We live in a world of moral values. Even those without faith know what is right and what is wrong. We all have a conscience and so many people get trapped in the pattern of saying something is right when deep down they know it isn’t.  Deep down mentally ill people know they are sinners and that God has inflicted this as punishment upon them.  Effectively, they have chosen mental illness, and by submitting to an exorcism they could choose to be free of this affliction.

… Looking back, you can see that there has been a steep decline, especially when it comes to the issue of mental health. There is so much scripture within the Bible that points to the cause of mental health problems.

Let me be clear. I believe that a person’s mental health status is a choice. In the Bible it says that mental health issues are inflicted as punishment for sin. It is not something you are born with, or something which occurs because of physiological or psychological causes. Mental illness is caused by sin or spiritual weakness; by demon possession.

Do not be wise in your own eyes; 
   fear the LORD and shun evil. 
This will bring health to your body 
   and nourishment to your bones.

– Proverbs 3:7-8

My concern is that we are advocating to young people that it is OK to suffer from mental illness; that it’s not their fault and they shouldn’t be stigmatised. But I truly believe if you are told being mentally ill is not your fault, it will  impact your life and you will never see the need for repentance. If somebody is told mental illness can be helped by drugs and cognitive therapy, they may start to believe it. Acceptance is ultimately unkind.

We are living in a society that takes the easy way out. Drugs and cognitive therapy, are the soft option; only exorcism can drive the demons from your soul!

Exorcisms are traumatic. But people suffering from mental illnesses need exorcisms – and I think we are losing sight of this.

We are led by politicians and mental health ‘experts’ who lie and spread deceit. They no longer accept the Bible as the last word on health issues and that affects us all, as a nation. Lies that demons don’t exist, and don’t cause illness,  just don’t seem to matter much any more.

There is so much deception in the world and it’s getting worse by the minute. The Gospel of John speaks of a mad man being possessed by demons so there is the proof. … We have lost our way and have been deceived by the secular view that illness is not supernaturally imposed for sins against God.

It worries me because I fear our next generation will lose all direction and become more possessed by demons than ever before.

I can’t understand, if we are a blessed nation under a biblical Constitution, why there is such a push to send people with mental health problems to psychiatrists and psychologists?  Indeed, our church coffers would swell significantly  if mentally ill people were forced to attend churches for exorcisms. We could provide these at exorbitant prices and pay no tax on the profits. My own church could certainly do with the cash …

That is why I believe we need to stop all government subsidies for mental health treatment because mental illness is God-ordained and only exorcism in a House of God can set you free.

The New Testament is the greatest book on psychology. It shows you how to live victoriously. It’s our TV guide to life. It has everything in there for every facet – even how to run a nation…

A nun at my primary school once held my head under water for several minutes in order to drive demons of disobedience from me.  It was one of the best experiences of my life. She could see the potential in me long before I did.  I just had to get rid of those d****d demons! She gave me a grounding for the future, for which I remain grateful … That’s what our kids need right now: people who are willing to physically abuse them into submission, people who will make them submit to exorcisms if they suffer from bipolar disorder, schizophrenia or depression. This is what the Bible prescribes …  in a world where we have become far too scared to reject unbiased research, scientific and medical consensus and the rights of individuals to be treated with dignity, respect and acceptance.

Margaret Court is a pastor and a current world No.1 fundamentalist, homophobic, bigot.

Chrys Stevenson

See also Mike Stuchbery’s: Margaret Court, Translated

Court’s original op-ed piece in the Herald-Sun is here.

Furious Purpose’s, Stirring the Pot for Shits and Giggles contains the brilliant quip:

“The former Catholic turned fundie evangelical who runs her own church in Perth should have stuck to hitting tennis balls. Her intellectual stamina is to her forehand what Tony Abbott is to Plato.”

Margaret Court’s views increase gay suicide risk: health advocate, The Australian

18 thoughts on “An argument in favour of exorcisms – ‘in the spirit’ of Margaret Court

  1. Mike Williams

    Margaret’s article is the kind of incoherent rant full of historical inaccuracies that fills up comment threads.

    By the time I got through to

    “A nun at my primary school once gave me the cane and it was one of the best lessons of my life. She could see the potential in me long before I did. She gave me a grounding for the future, for which I remain grateful”

    my stomach was nearly heaving. An unexplained violent act from a religious care-giver is a grounding for the future?

  2. Stuart MacLeod

    Generally my opinion is it seems difficult to understand how anyone with a sane logical head on their shoulders could ever believe the stories as written in the bible. However that is not quite true … with hindsight it is easy enough to grasp why males would support these stories, they get all the benefits afterall. What is completely beyond me is how females can swallow these directions supposedly given by some deity. While I am at it, why do we mention (in the same breath) that Margaret Court is a former number 1 tennis player – as if that somehow makes her opinion on same-sex marriage better than those with specialised training … psychology for starters … but the list would go a long way before it arrives at tennis player.

  3. Colin Mackay

    Get used to it Chrys, they’ve got control (influence) of our institutions and our parliament. All we can hope for is that they’re gentle with us in the internment camps:(

    1. Gladly, the Cross-Eyed Bear: Assorted Rants on Religion, Science, Politics and Philosophy from a bear of very little brain Post author

      Well, Colin, I don’t know if it’s THAT bad. I think same-sex marriage is inevitable, it’s a juggernaut now and it won’t be stopped – at least in the mid-term. That’s why they’re so scared. They know they’ve lost the populace on this one and every word against homosexuals exposes for them for the hateful, narrow-minded, authoritarian wowser they are. The next generation simply won’t stand for this nonsense. A couple of elections to clear out the old dinosaurs and things may look much more hopeful – if we don’t manage to get same-sex marriage through this round.

      And secularist forces are uniting. We are no longer as complacent as we were. Look at the publicity over the Melinda Tankard Reist/Jennifer Wilson stoush this week.

      There was a time when you couldn’t get an atheist/secular story into our local newspaper, now, thanks to some judicious lobbying from a former local councillor, I’ve had several stories featured in the last 12 months.

      So, we’re getting there and we’ll continue to grow strength and get better at what we do. And, if worst comes to worst, you can use the Bibles in the internment camp to make playing cards, and I can uses the pages to curl my hair – just like our convict ancestors did. 😛

  4. Robert Tobin

    My late father was a huge fan of Margaret Court when she played tennis. I don’t know what he would think of her now she has been poisoned by the GOD VIRUS.

  5. Ken Dally

    Brilliant and as far as I can tell accurate translation of Mrs Courts hateful, homophobic and scientifically ignorant rant. Her original article was the closest I have ever been to vomiting without actually being ill that I can remember. The realisation that she makes a tax free fortune from such behaviour sickens me and I’m sure any rational thinking person.

    Keep up the good work.

  6. Rebecca

    Hey Gladly, can you change “raving racist lunatic” which is ableist to just “raving racist”? I don’t think you’d want to lump in those with mental illnesses with those who are racist.

    1. Gladly, the Cross-Eyed Bear: Assorted Rants on Religion, Science, Politics and Philosophy from a bear of very little brain Post author

      Good point, Rebecca and glad to comply.

      Ironically, I’ve been doing some edits on a friend’s book this past week and made a similar observation and warning to him.

      In his case, the problematic word was ‘nutter’ written in rather too close proximity to the word ‘schizophrenic’. Though no link between the two words was intended, I did fear it would be misinterpreted.

      Semantics is fascinating isn’t it. As I wrote that, the word ‘lunatic’ didn’t even figure in my thinking as connoting one who is mentally ill – although obviously it is a perjorative term for just that. Even the fact that the word ‘lunatick’ is used in the biblical passage didn’t sound y alarm bells.

      Rather, I thought of ‘lunatic’ in the same way as my friend thought of ‘nutter’, someone not insane or mentally ill, but just perversely obsessive about something or someone – like a conspiracy theory nutter, or “some lunatic drove down my street at midnight honking his horn”.

      Anyway, thank you for protecting me from criticism and I do take your point. And I know you know that it was a slip made only because of the lack of association in my mind between the two terms.

  7. Darcy Black

    I have relatives who would rather pray over a serious illness than go to the GP so this may be satire but it is ACCURATE! Excellent piece of writing.

    Every day, I thank absolutely no deity that I left church, religion and god behind. As has been stated, Margaret Court already has a government subsidised platform for her hatred, it doesn’t need to be published in a tabloid newspaper.

  8. Pingback: Stirring the pot for shits and giggles | | Furious PurposeFurious Purpose

  9. crazyhorse

    Margaret Court’s
    (a) lack of empathy for homosexuals, particularly her lack of empathy about the truth that homosexuality is not a choice;
    (b) sense of entitlement
    (c) arrogance
    (d) grandiosity ..
    .. is significant.

    1. Gladly, the Cross-Eyed Bear: Assorted Rants on Religion, Science, Politics and Philosophy from a bear of very little brain Post author

      The grandiosity really does come through, doesn’t it? I do understand that she was once a great tennis player, but inhabiting that ‘space’ so many years later seems to me a bit like bragging on my blog that I came second in the State show-jumping championships when I was 12. It was a huge achievement for a 12 year old, but geez, it was 40 years ago – I’ve tried to do things since then that I can be equally proud of. In other words, bask in your contemporary achievements if you must, but don’t try to keep milking applause for something you stopped doing years ago. Margaret seems to have frozen her moment of glory in time.

      1. crazyhorse

        The criteria I have listed aligns with the points David and you make just below. That group of criteria are highly significant in certain well-recognized diagnostic or international classification manuals.

  10. David

    Have you not thought that Margaret,
    may need psychological assistance
    to have chosen the life of a Bigot…?

    I wonder, a tennis star, maybe she suspected
    her opponents were gay & gave them
    a good
    Tennis thrashing in Public…lol

    It must be lonely being so out of step with
    the majority of the Medical Profession, reality, wise persons, fair minded people,
    to be so lacking in love, kindness, compassion
    & charity…

    Nope, maybe I am wrong
    Perhaps, instead of not knowing any better
    she just chooses
    to be hurtful & hateful

    1. Gladly, the Cross-Eyed Bear: Assorted Rants on Religion, Science, Politics and Philosophy from a bear of very little brain Post author

      The sad thing is, I think she is genuinely well-meaning, but deluded. Not clinically insane, but self-brainwashed sufficiently only to see things through a particular prism with an almost sociopathic disregard for the havoc she is wreaking. She simply doesn’t see it – it is invisible to her. To quote an oft-used phrase, she sees the world through Christian coloured glasses and her world-view is so distorted from reality that one could not actually even expect her to see what we see so clearly. In a way (although I still insist that she is not clinically insane) it reminds me of those Dr Phil shows where Dr Phil explains to the family of a drug addict that there is no point trying to reason with them because their relative simply ‘isn’t there’ – they are talking to the drugs. In Margaret’s case, I suspect ‘real Margaret’ disappeared years ago and now you would simply be talking to ‘the dogma’. It’s sad. It’s almost like some parasite has come and gnawed away at their brain so reason and compassion and acceptance are simply not there to access.

  11. Louella

    As a passionate tennis player and fan, I feel I deserve to be *more* outraged than others. MC is such a disappointment and embarrassment to the tennis world.
    Lovely article and interesting angle. It builds to a resounding crescendo.

  12. Phil Browne

    Thanks Chrys for a great article. Yes, substituting someone’s own words with another “condition” or trait (such as race, religion etc) is a great way of highlighting down-right bigotry.

    As serious as the issue is, your writing gave me some rather needed chuckles.
    As for living in a country with a biblical constitution!!! – although the Lord’s Prayer is still read in Parliament as far as I know 😦

  13. Allie

    Simplistic, egotistical, judgemental and self righteous; that is the sense I got from reading that article by that sad little woman.
    It seems that when people become famous, rich, successful they somehow need to look ‘elsewhere’ for meaning. Maybe they feel guilty, or maybe they are simply confused, that all they need do to feel ‘better’ or ‘more normal’ is to give most of those things ( recognition, wealth, ambition) away.

    I try to pick the most affecting part of Ms Court’s article but cannot go past her being physically abused by another human ( let alone a chamion of ‘god’). I think this is where her troubles began. Her sense of guilt, entitlement and pride began there.

    I love the way you write, Chrys. I love those who read and support your writings.

    I am a little afraid that the MC’s of this country are leading us to the ignorant stupidity of the religious right USA.

    Thank you for another wonderful conciousness raising piece.

    (BTW When I was working for an institution caring for profoundly mentally handicapped people the law that we were ‘under’ was called the ‘Lunacy Act’. This included provisions for those who were suffering mental retardation, aged dementia, Down’s syndrome, alcoholic dementia etc How far we have come, teasing out those various disorders, laying down help, advice, and medical support to give those suffereing the best life possible. MC would prefer us to remain ignorant and uncompassionate because of her archaic and historically incorrect ancient texts….and why is she preaching when it specifically says in her “book” that a woman must stay silent and obey men?)


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