Monday, January 4, 2010

Get Off the Cross, Honey. Somebody Needs the Wood

In a piece of news that I'm sure will surprise you, a Christian group (Christian Anti-Defamation Commission) is lying about persecution it claims to have faced during the year of 2009. Towleroad reports the group's "Top 10" instances of anti-Christian persecution.

10. Pro-life Pastor Reverend Walter Hoye of Oakland, CA was jailed for exercising peaceful, pro-life speech.

9. Rev. Fred Winters was murdered while preaching in his pulpit in Maryville, Illinois.

8. HBO's program "Curb Your Enthusiasm" aired an episode where the main actor urinates on painting of Jesus. When confronted HBO would not apologize.

7. The overt homosexual participation in Obama's presidential inaugural events by "Bishop" Vickie Eugene Robinson, the Gay Men's Chorus of Washington D. C., and a homosexual marching band.

6. Police called to East Jessamine Middle School in Lexington, Kentucky to stop 8th graders from praying during their lunch break for a student whose mother was tragically killed.

5. Pro-life activist Jim Pullion was murdered in front of his granddaughter's high school for showing the truth about abortion.

4. An activist judge ordered a home school mom in New Hampshire to stop home schooling her daughter because the little girl "reflected too strongly" her mother's Christian faith.

3. The Federal Department of Homeland Security issued a report entitled "Rightwing Extremism: Current Economic and Political Climate" that labeled conservative Christians extremists and potential terrorists.

2. President Obama's appointment of radical anti-Christians like homosexual activist Kevin Jennings as the "safe school czar;" pro-abortion advocate Kathleen Seblius made Secretary of Human and Health Services, and Chai Feldblum, pro-homosexual and anti-religious liberty judge nominated for Equal Employment Opportunity Commission.

1. The Federal Hate Crimes Bill that attacks religious liberty and freedom of speech. For the first time in our history ministers are vulnerable to investigation and prosecution for telling the truth about homosexuality.

Right of the bat, #7, 2, and 3 are pure lies or exaggeration. I mean, come on, in #7 they're complaining that gay groups merely participated in Obama's inauguration. Apparently the mere acknowledgment of gay people as contributing members of society counts as Christian persecution. Cry me a river. (PS did you notice their inclusion of quotation marks around Bishop Robinson's title, and the inclusion of the name "Vickie" to make him sound more effeminate? How transparently patronizing.)

#2 is also an example of the mere inclusion of openly gay people as being seen as persecution. One might notice that the group makes no mention of Jewish, Buddhist, or atheist appointees as causing Christian subjugation (i.e. they really just don't like gay people). I have been following the actions of some of those appointees and to my knowledge they have done nothing that could be seen as anti-Christian other than advocate for the rights and safety of LGBT adults, children, and allies.

Finally, #1 is an affront to the reader's intelligence, since anyone with Google access knows that the 1st Amendment would make such a law unconstitutional. The Hate Crimes Bill does nothing other than provide federal funds to local authorities for investigating crimes that appear to be motivated towards a victims sexual orientation, gender identity, or disability. A violent crime has to have been committed in order for the law to come into play. It has nothing to do with speech. Also, these categories were simply added to the already existing categories including race and religion.

Aside from what follows, I leave the dissection of the other instances of "persecution" to you. It's quite possible that some of the others are true (and if so, should be condemned), but if I could find 3 out of the top 10 of 2009 without even trying...

I would though, like to briefly mention #8. When I first read it, I pictured some dude deliberately urinating on a Jesus painting to make a point, or to be deliberately insulting. I'll have to admit, I didn't really care. But then I tried to flip the situation, and so I wondered how I would have felt if the character had urinated on a pride flag, or a poster of a pink triangle. How would I feel if a deliberately anti-gay act of vandalism was portrayed on TV for millions to see?

Truth be told, I know that would hurt me. I know that that would make me anxious about the anti-gay sentiment it would help to propagate. Still...I'm not sure about hate speech laws, and I dislike the idea of censorship in any way. So in the end, I think I would have to side with the principle of free speech, and not try to take any action against HBO, as some Christian groups apparently did.

Of course, then I went and actually watched the clip, and in reality the character only accidentally urinates on the painting, and seems rather embarrassed about it. Showing someone feeling bad about accidentally peeing on a painting of Jesus isn't reeeeeally what I would call persecution...

UPDATE (07/01/2010): hehe, someone totally takes apart much of the rest of the "persecution" h/t Dispatches

UPDATE (10/01/2010): and now PZ Myers has covered it too.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

It may be that your sole purpose in life is simply to serve as a warning to others.............................................