Saturday, June 8, 2013

Hell-Bound Alabamians

 Here's something more from the Ig Nobel Prizes.

Back in the 1990s, the Baptist Church devised a formula for determining in their opinion what percentage of Alabamians are destined for Hell.  In their opinion, about 46% merited eternal damnation.  Apparently, according to this article the criterion for being "unsaved" primarily used was church membership.  Catholics and certain Protestant sects could be expected to experience a more-than-tropical heat wave, while Baptists would be issued harps or banjos or whatever celestial music they were to make.  Furthermore, the Birmingham News got wind of their formula, and published their estimates on a county-by-county basis.   There was some commotion, I guess; and the scientists for the Ig Nobel Prize awards awarded them one for Mathematics in 1994.

Madison County (Huntsville) and Limestone County (Athens) had a lot of Hell-bound Alabamians in their estimation.  So did Tuscaloosa.  Now it's been said that Tuscaloosa is a drinking town with a football problem; the other county with a similar high number was Lee County, where Auburn University is located.  Baldwin County (Gulf Shores and its dives), with 56% unsaved, is very high also.  On the other hand, about 70% of Clay County residents are saved.

One wonders what is the state of Alabama's grace now in 2013?  Have more become "unsaved"?  Are the football worshippers of Alabama and Auburn the reason for so many unsaved?  Certainly, the success of one has been attributed to a Faustian bargain, and there's the infamous Rammer Jammer cheer.  What about the white sauce barbecue people?  Is the number of unsaved in Madison County due to those Republican, porn-loving engineers?

I looked in vain for percentages of the unsaved in other states.  Does the oppressive rectitude of the Midwest result in more being saved?  Is the fiscal restraint and ecological concerns of Californians enough to warrant more a pass through those Pearly Gates?  Are West Virginians particularly endowed with grace?  What about the percentages saved at South Beach?  Does going topfree jeopardize your salvation chances, or if you present a good front, will St. Peter give you a pass?

Obviously, my mind is boggled with questions.

However, I am assured that the Alabama Baptists, and no other religious denomination, actually once attempted to quantify how many of their state will go to heaven.  They should be commended for their clever blending of quantification with speculation.  I hope they will renew their efforts by more recent quantifications, and extend their methodology to the other 49 states, because I'm totally curious.


Clarissa said...

Probably an underestimation.

MarkD60 said...

If you look at the 10 commandments, no Christian will ever go to heaven.

TexWisGirl said...

no comment w/o surely offending someone.

Elvis Wearing a Bra on His Head said...

Well, Huntsville, Montgomery, and Birmingham are #1, #2, and #7 for being religious cities that watch the most on-line porn.

Mike said...

'...unsaved in Madison County due to those Republican..'

Unsaved Republicans? Say it ain't so!

Grand Crapaud said...

When the original Birmingham News article came out, there was a lot of laughing going on. Nobody took it very seriously.

eViL pOp TaRt said...

I wrote this strictly in fun. I don't seriously think that football fan status or political party has any bearing on the hereafter. Anyway, Improbable Research has some real gems for you to look at!

Bilbo said...

Hell's been around for a long time, and it must be getting pretty full. I wonder if there's a waiting list, a line flanked by red (of course) velvet ropes, and a bouncer with a red suit and pitchfork checking IDs and tickets. Or a sign shaped like a thermometer with some clever explanation like "You must have killed this many people to enter."