“It says something about a chasm in American culture that two groups that deride each other’s core beliefs use the same text to promote their own views.” Jeffrey Weiss of The Dallas Morning News takes a tour of Hollywood Hellhouse, a satiric restaging of the evangelical Halloween alternative that features a gay man dying of AIDS, a girl committing suicide after being gang-raped at a rave, a fetus ripped from a pregnant woman by a verbally abusive doctor and a girl being murdered in a satanic ritual after Harry Potter books led her to the occult. The Hollywood version features Bill Maher as Satan and Andy Richter as Jesus.

According to Sojourners, more than 59,000 people pledged support for an advertisement published in The New York Times during the Republican National Convention. The advertisement began, “‘God is not a Republican. Or a Democrat,'” and quoted partisan, pro-Bush comments from Pat Robertson and Jerry Falwell. The ad also ran in Robertson’s and Falwell’s hometown newspapers. Read more.

Boy, does that David Brooks know moral clarity. And the Islamic fringe. While namby-pamby liberals mess about looking for root causes, Brooks has already got terrorism figured out: they’re all psychopaths. “It’s about the sheer pleasure of killing and dying. It’s about massacring people while in a state of spiritual loftiness. It’s about experiencing the total freedom of barbarism — freedom even from human nature…It’s about the joy of sadism and suicide.”

Demographers have announced that Zoroastrians, who mainly live in India and Iran, may face extinction due to falling birth rates and reluctance to accept converts. Jehangir Pocha of The Boston Globe reports that the threat has sparked heated debates on adapting to the times versus maintainung a pure identity.