"...and you are hereby sentenced to death. Do you have any final remarks, Edward Jarrett Axel?"

"Yes, I believe that he does." said Edward's lawyer. Edward stood up from the table, perfectly calm, and walked up to the podium.

"It would have been easy for me to escape this fate which has imposed itself on me, if I followed the advice of my lawyers, to plead for insanity. However, no matter how my lawyers argued for my innocence, I plead guilty. Why? Because I take responsibility for my actions, for what I have done. If I could have my life back, I would do the same thing. I would not change, because I believe it was the right thing to do.

"For the past two centuries, there have been no scientific progress whatsoever in any field, anywhere across the globe. The world has been brainwashed, consumed, by religion. Religion has become the explanation for everything. We no longer care about how things work, why things work, and most importantly, how to improve it. We have been conditioned to be satisfied with what we have. We have been conditioned to become mindless zealots of our God. Religion has staunched our will to learn. Religion has stopped science.

"That is why I stand before you today. I believe that religion must be stopped.

"Our minds are now focused on religion. Our thoughts are centred on religion. Our world revolves around religion. But religion is a fraud. It is used to control the general population. 'Religion is the opiate of the people', quoth Karl Marx. Our religion tells us what we can and cannot do, and governs our every day lives. We no longer think, we just follow whatever the religion tells us. We no longer decide, because our religion decides for us. We no longer live, for we live only for religion.

"Those thoughts passed through my mind two exactly decades ago, on the anniversary of our Lord. I devised a plan of overthrowing the religion, to wake people up from their mindless sleep, to bring people to their senses. I planned the destruction of the five most major churches. I planned the massacre of the thousands of pilgrims to their sacred sites. I planned the bombing of the religious capital of the world. I have been judged for these crimes, and have been sentenced to death, which I gratefully accept. But I still believe that these atrocities were justified. I have done it for the sake of science.

"There was no other way of bringing this across to you. I believe that I am the only person of my mind in the world, and this is the only think that I can do alone. No amount of demonstrations, no amount of petitioning could make the same effect I made on this world. Look towards yourselves. Look at what you have become, slaves to our great creator, blindly following his will. Look at what we've become. All of our ancestors fought for freedom and justice, but we have cast off that right to put on the shackles of religion.

"I am not insane, I can assure you that much. I am a fully functional human. I am a thinking, rational being, something that none of you can claim. I am free from the shackles of religion; I have the liberty to do as I please, unhindered by the all mighty ruler. I am no longer one of his subjects. I have a new god, and his name is Science."

Edward walked back to his seat and sat, back to the silent gallery. The judge spoke once more.

"You shall be hanged on the 21st of December..."

SciFiQuest 9999

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