“Go God Go XII” is South Park episode 1012 and Cartman’s Headed to the Future

This episode and the one after it, “Go God Go XII” (1013), are incredible.

When Mrs. Garrison refuses to teach evolution to her class, Richard Dawkins, renowned public atheist, is hired to explain evolution to the class. He and Mrs. Garrison, despite their differences, fall in love and decide to bully everyone into atheism.

In the meantime, Cartman, unable to wait for the Nintendo Wii, decides to freeze himself and reawaken in three weeks. However, an avalanche prevents his plan from working and he is awakened five-hundred years in the future – an atheist future! – that has been influenced by Dawkins and Garrison and is at war.

Will Cartman ever play the Wii? Will the future be atheist? Does God cause war or is it religious people who insist that they are right?

What did you think of this episode? Do you think that religion is inherently violent or do you think that people will always find something to fight about?

Don’t forget to come back here right after tonight’s new episode for my thoughts on episode 1209, “Breast Cancer Show Ever.”

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5 Responses

  1. Religion is not necessarily inherently violent.

    People pursue their own agendas. Sometimes they use religion to justify their actions. Religious people instigate war because they claim to be doing the right thing. They fight for what they think is good. Does it make these violent religious fanatics evil? I don’ t know. The television series 24 seems to suggest otherwise.

    The atheist future in this episode illustrates that religion is no more believable than obsolete mythologies and lacks credible evidence to many of us. Science, on the other hand, provides substantial support for evolution and other human elements. These days, science seems more convincing than mere faith on “biblical truths.” What this episode didn’t explore was the possibility of moral depravity in an atheist society. Interesting, I thought.

  2. Thank you for your great comment Sassy Doc. I would like to reply to your second paragraph, though, because I don’t think it’s shining the happy light on atheism and science that your comment seems to insinuate.

    True, the show is comparing religion to an outdated mythology, but what it’s really trying to tell us is that any belief can be dangerous, not because of the degree of its veracity, but because of the conviction and unrelenting bullying of its adherents. Mrs. Garrison is the prime example – “Richard, with your brain and my balls” we could turn the whole world atheist. Like Stan and the dance cap, she bullies everyone into believing as she does.

    As for the moral depravity issue in an atheist society, the episode does hint at the correlation between God, religion and violence, but actually conflates them all (intentionally, in a conversation between Dawkins and Garrison) to make us question the degree to which these things are related and even wonder whether or not we need God to be moral.

    I think that the episode, and particularly the one following it, are just as critical of atheism as other episodes are of other religions, insisting that atheism is still just an -ism, and all -isms can be dangerous in the hands of irrational people (quote from the end of the second episode).

    Good observations, though, Sassy Doc – keep watching next week when the continuation of this episode “Go God Go XII” will be on at 9:30 on Wednesday.

  3. Admittedly, it’s been awhile since I watched this episode. I guess what I meant to say was that this episode suggests”-isms” aren’t all too different from one another. Regardless of religion or lack there of, people possess inherent qualities that drive them toward violent, irrational impulses. A world absent of religion isn’t necessarily any different from a world w/ a plethora of religions and cults.

    Some contend that religion calls for ignorance, because the religion tells you not to challenge it. This episode blatantly suggests that atheism can be as illogical as religion. It can be devoid of rational thought. In the future, people — and otters — say “Science damn it” and “Oh my science” and adhere as rigidly and inflexibly to their own brand of Dawkinsism as they did before to whatever religion to which they had subscribed.

    You’re right– “isms” can be dangerous in the hands of “irrational people.” But could there ever be a world absent of irrational people and -isms? Unlikely. So is the problem “-isms” or “irrational people”? Maybe it’s not the beliefs that are dangerous… but people and how they manifest their unwavering convictions… People will always fight for a constellation of irrational thoughts and be stupid enough to execute those ideas… Maybe we’re doomed and we can’t blame religion/atheism for planting wildly absurd ideas into impressionable minds.

    I’m sort of rambling here.

  4. I’m not sure that we can actually get rid of the isms or the irrational people – I’m quite sure we can’t actually, but the problem, as you’ve put it, is definitely the unwavering adherence to any belief and the willingness to kill other people over it.

  5. […] to episode 1012, “Go God Go II,” which aired last Wednesday and can be read about HERE. Sassy Doc and I had a great conversation following my post so check it […]

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