February 14, 2020
How the DEA determines if a religion is trueby Ballard Quass
after two millennia of disagreement on that subject among philosophers and theologians
In granting exceptions to the laws prohibiting use of psychedelics, the DEA makes exceptions for religious practices that they determine to be genuine. This raises an interesting question: how precisely does the DEA determine something that even great philosophers across the ages have been unable to agree upon, namely, which religions are genuine and why?
Not to worry. I have uncovered a government form that is apparently used by the DEA to make precisely the sort of metaphysical determinations mentioned above. So, theologians, take note: Here's what the DEA will be looking for should you ever happen to adhere to a religious belief whose ceremonials involve the use of plant life that the DEA has seen fit to criminalize.
DEA Form 8011-B-C-1
Guidelines for determining the veracity of a religious belief
In determining the authenticity of a religious belief, the DEA agent in charge shall consider the following points:
1) Is the claimant snickering at any time during the application process? If so, claim should ordinarily be rejected-- since we all know that real religion is a serious matter.
2) Is the claimant prone to excessive partying? This is often a red flag indicating that the exception seeker equates religion with hedonism, which again is against the Protestant Ethic -- er, I mean, the U.S. Government's ethical code of conduct, of course.
3) Does the claimant's religion accept (or plan to accept) "worshipers" from out of state? This is often a red flag, since it is well known that real religions -- with the possible exception of Rock Church -- are somewhat stodgy, formal affairs that are unlikely to inspire long-distance fidelity in the absence of questionable incentives. This in turn suggests that a large percentage of such a "church's" commuters will be winking lasciviously en route, salivating in anticipation of a tawdry "high," rather than rejoicing in the Blood of Our Redeemer, Jesus Christ, Our Lord and Savior, without whom -- er, I mean as just one bona fide above-board REAL honest-to-God religious example, of course.
4) Does the claimant harp on and on about the fact that alcohol is addictive and kills thousands of people every year while we at the DEA are criminalizing plants that have been used for centuries in therapeutic ceremonies? Does he or she point out that LSD was used successfully to cure alcoholics, by no less a person than Bill Wilson himself of AA, before we in our wisdom shut down such therapies? Does the claimant dare to point out that the DEA permits the peddling of highly addictive anti-depressants by BIG PHARMA, while we are shutting down research on non-addictive alternatives from nature? If so, politely remind the claimant that it is our job to determine THEIR morality, thank them very much, not the other way around.
Psst! Hey, Job Seekers...
DEA Seeking Demigod to Rule on the Validity of so-called "religions." Must be willing and able to evince inflexible certainty on a topic that the world's greatest thinkers have disagreed about for millennia, namely what constitutes a true religion.