Monday, July 23, 2012

Another Mass Shooting and the Death of Class

When a gunman walked to the front of a theatre in Aurora, CO released gas and fired into the crowd watching a movie another bomb went off in the consciousness of our country.  The shock wave slammed into the families of the dead and wounded the hardest but the ripple will be felt by all of us in varying degrees.  Anger is often the first response and mostly aimed at the gunman.  But in the age of the internet some have chosen to go a different route.  When I woke on Friday morning I listened as the news media tried to make sense of the killing, repeating the few cellphone videos of people helping people out of the theatre, police response and the eerie shot of neon colors over the dark parking lot.  My first thought was "how long before someone starts talking about Muslims".  It only took a few moments as I logged into NBCNews and a there was a comment right there.  But it was a nut with a computer, no one who had any power or followers of his voice.  But within a few hours someone who does have both power and followers weighed in.  Representative Louis Gohmert of the Texas 1st.  In an interview he blamed attacks on Christianity for these events occurring.  A member of Congress basically said that the fact that he sees non-Christians asserting their existence in this country caused a climate that allows people to kill. By the way he is on the civil rights committee in Congress.  Ironically in the same interview he lamented that no one else in the theatre was armed.  Later that day, President Obama's favorite evangelical made even a worse statement.  He tweated, “When students are taught they are no different from animals, they act like it.”  The suggestion of course is that if we believe the facts of evolution we some how discount life to the point of just killing people.  Mr. Warren should look at history where innocent people all over Europe fell to the sword held by a knight wearing a cross.  Yet another so-called minister Jerry Newcombe said "If a Christian dies early, if a Christian dies young, it seems tragic, but really it is not tragic because they are going to a wonderful place.. on the other hand, if a person doesn’t know Jesus Christ.. if they knowingly rejected Jesus Christ, then, basically, they are going to a terrible place."  So basically, what this so-called man of God is saying to the family of victims, if you child, husband, wife, parent were not good Christians they are going to hell.  Really?  While I understand that he believes this, saying it out loud really was not only unnecessary but down right hateful. Imagine if an atheist started handing out studies that show prayer fails most of the time when praying for the ill at a hospital chapel.   But please don't think the crazy right are the only ones.  Several out spoken atheists have also used this as a way to try to ask people to reject God.  I can almost hear the smug "Where was God?" voices.  However, in our country their voices as much more muted.

When did it become a value in this country to just, as I said earlier, vomit your thoughts on us all.  When did it become important to slap people in the face with your particular world vision in the aftermath of a tragic event?  When is it okay to treat the death of a child as soapbox for your religious views?  I don't know, but I don't like it, and frankly I am ready to truly take this disgusting ideology on in a more aggressive way.  Will you join me?

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