H. L. Mencken's Opinion
Mr. Cliff Walker,
Thanks for the great site.
I've always loved H. L. Mencken, his succinct quotes and unapologetic manner. Have you ever come across this quote (paraphrase) that I've heard attributed to him?
The problem with born again Christians is the second time 'round they are born brain dead.
(Sorry for the poor paraphrase!)
I heard it from a professor once, but have not been able to find it. Any ideas?
From: "Positive Atheism"
To: ""Robert Hadley"
Subject: Mencken quote re: born-again Christians
Date: November 23, 2004
I strongly doubt this one's claim of authenticity. It's quite lame, to say the least, being more of a gratuitous insult than an observation that one one would expect from the pen of the most painstakingly consummate and uncompromising attentive social critics America has ever produced, fastidious in his attention to detail. I hesitate to call it "hatemongering" although that's what this thing boils down to.
H. L. Mencken was wa-a-ay too sharp to settle for the humor profession's equivalent of the music industry's "throw-away lines."
Herb Caen, the late columnist for the San Francisco Chronicle, did make the following observation regarding our friends the Born-Agains:
The trouble with born-again Christians is that they are an even bigger pain the second time around.
I have a lapel button that goes like this:
I don't mind born again Christians as long as they realize they don't get twice as many rights.
If you find the Mencken quip and can verify it, however, let me know. I'll double-check its authenticity (just because I find it so un-Mencken-like) and put it up anyway.
"Positive Atheism" Magazine
Entering our 10th year of service
to people with no reason to believe