Thursday, May 13, 2010

Go Ahead…Maketh My Day

   Talk about “Praise God and Pass the Ammunition”… On May 12, the Louisiana state House voted 74 to 18 to allow churches, synagogues, and mosques to permit guns into their services, for self-protection. The good news is that, if anyone is shot, they’re in the ideal spot for a faith healing. The bad news is, it comes off as a vote of no-confidence for the Almighty akin to the pope’s bulletproof Popemobile. If these folks genuinely believed the Creator of the Universe had their back, would they really feel the need for a .38?

   "I want to see in the Bible where it says you can't bring a gun to church," said Republican state representative Ernest Wooten. Okay, but I want to see where it says you can't own a slave, have an abortion, teach evolution, or feel up Betty Lou in the back of an SUV. And think how differently the Christian faith would have turned out if, when the authorities came to arrest Jesus, he was packing heat. Great movie action. Lousy religious philosophy.

   Obviously, Jesus couldn’t have commented on owning firearms. But he did say stuff like, “Put your sword in its place, for all who take up the sword will perish by the sword,” [Matt 26:52] and “Love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you,” [Matt 5:44] and “do good to those who hate you, bless those who curse you...” [Luke 6:27-28] It’s hard to find a mandate for the NRA in all that.

   Not that violence in churches is exactly new. As far back as AD 415, the brilliant and lovely mathematician, Hypatia, found herself on the business end of a Christian hoard that didn’t roll with her fame or her preference for science over mysticism. On the orders of a bishop, who later became a saint, she was stripped naked in the street and dragged off to a church, where she was flailed to death. Then she was burned. If she had been in Louisiana, they could have been more merciful and just shot her. I’m sure somebody considers this progress.

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