Did you know that God Hates Winks?

Really, I’m not making this up. God’s been extremely clear about it.

I’m referencing the same source as the “fringe U.S. anti-gay protest group” that failed to put in an appearance Saturday in Edmonton’s Whyte Avenue theatre district where a performance of the Laramie Project was scheduled.

Apparently the members of the famously intolerant Westboro Baptist Church don’t approve of performances of this play, seeing as it tells the story of the murder of a gay youth in a small U.S. town and that community’s reaction to it. What’s more, they obviously don’t approve of such performances wherever they take place.

In case you’re Rip van Winkle (hmmmmm….), the Westboro congregants, all 71 of ’em, all of ’em cousins by the sound of it, really don’t approve of gay people at all, or Reform Jews, or Catholics, or even Methodists, for heaven’s sake! And they spend a couple of hundred thousand rapidly devaluing U.S. smackeroos every year travelling around the North American continent telling folks who aren’t really all that interested about their passionately held beliefs.

Still and all, one would have thought they wouldn’t have bothered trying to drive all the way from Topeka, Kansas, to northwestern Canada, for heaven’s sake, seeing how far gone to hell those Canadians are, what with their very popular North-Korean-style state supported health insurance, inclusive marriage policies, a nasty tendency to spell color with a U and a dollar called a Loonie that’s worth more than the Greenback on some days. (Although, I suppose, the latter could be taken as more evidence of God’s displeasure with Uncle Sam.)

Plus, of course, we’ve got more petroleum resources up here than such famous oil towns as Sodom, Gomorrah and Wichita, the third one being right down the road from Topeka in a more-than-strictly-metaphorical sense. (Actually, you could probably make a scriptural case from what happened to the first two of these places, and maybe the other one too, that God Hates Oil, but let’s leave that one for another day, seeing as we started out with winks.)

Maybe they thought we should amend our hitherto ineffective provincial branding slogan from “freedom to create” to “freedom to procreate.”

What the hell (as it were), maybe they figured they were already in the neighbourhood, stirring up hate in Great Falls, Mont., or something, and decided an excursion to Alberta before the snow flies might be nice.

More likely, though, they thought there they might still be some hope for redemption for us here in Alabamberta, seeing as we have the pro-profit Prophet Danielle Smith and her Wild-Eyed Alliance Party to warn us about the similarities to North Korea in the way we do health care. You know, kinda give us a chance to nip things in the bud with a little privatization before we all climb into that hand-basket bound for Hell.

Or, come to think of it, maybe they’re just … never mind.

Well, whatever. In the event, the Westboro congregants apparently didn’t make it across the border, which is sort of too bad, since we were deprived of the opportunity to give them a good old Canadian welcome like the one we gave Stephen Van Rensselaer in 1812.

This wasn’t the first time the Westboro Boys had trouble with Canadian border, either. Back in 2008 federal Public Safety Minister Stockwell Day sent an alert to Canadian border guards to hold the invisible line against the Kansans. (Now there’s irony!) Maybe Stock’s order is still in effect.

Regardless, lots of tolerant Edmontonians, the kind of folks who still approve of human rights for everyone, showed up waving funny signs that said things like “God loves everyone, even if you’re straight,” and “God Hates Fangs.”

Now, I’m not sure of theological foundation of that last one, although the Bible is pretty darn chilly on the topic of dogs now that they mention it, but I am sure than God Hates Winks, and prating fools too, and it’s time people on both sides of the border took note of it.

Consider Proverbs 6:12-13: “A naughty person, a wicked man, walketh with a froward mouth. He winketh with his eyes.”

And where does this lead, you may ask? To Proverbs 10:10: “He that winketh with the eye causeth sorrow; But a prating fool shall fall.” (And what does this say about Sarah Palin, I wonder? Take that one any way you like…)

That isn’t the only reference, either, but let’s quit while we’re ahead and move on to God’s attitudes about male pattern baldness. He doesn’t want you to make fun of it — got that? And if you doubt me, look it up: 2 Kings 2:23-24.

Now, I’m not going to waste your time trotting out the stuff about how God hates it when you plant petunias and tomatoes in the same window box (Leviticus 19:19), or how you’re supposed to kill your children if they convert to Buddhism (Deuteronomy 13:6-9) or if they get a job working Sundays at the Dairy Queen (Exodus 31:15). Everybody who’s read my previous sermons should be clear on that by now.

I just want you to know that you should stop winking. As for what we should do about soft drinks called Wink, or convenience stores of the same name, I don’t really know, but it would probably be prudent to steer well clear of both of them.

This post also appears on David Climenhaga’s blog, Alberta Diary.

David J. Climenhaga

David Climenhaga, author of the Alberta Diary blog, is a journalist, author, journalism teacher, poet and trade union communicator who has worked in senior writing and editing positions with the Globe...