Tuesday, July 24, 2012


From the Huffington Post:

Only Christian Victims Of Colorado Shooting Going To Heaven

Perhaps more disturbing were Newcombe’s comments on a segment on the American Family Association dedicated to understanding the shooting tragedy in Colorado. In taking about the deaths, Newcombe separated the afterlife fate of those who died as Christians and those who did not:

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.

More here.

If you've been reading here enough, then you've gotten my thoughts on religion in the public sphere, specifically on how one should walk a fine line between criticism and respect: that is, religion, in all its iterations, should be respected because it is culture, and deeply embedded in the identities of believers. On the other hand, when religion thrusts itself into the public discourse, the gloves must necessarily come off; now it's a debate about how I ought to live my life, and I'm definitely entitled to my opinion, definitely entitled to speak that opinion.

The above linked story is exactly what I'm talking about. And keep in mind, this isn't a statement made from a pulpit inside a worship space: this comes from a spokesman for a Christian evangelical organization. It is a deliberate foray into the public discourse. Well, okay. They have that right, just as I do. And my level of respect and reverence must necessarily drop.

Because this is a heinous thing to say. To say two or three days after innocent victims were murdered in a senseless bloodbath that they're going to an afterlife of eternal torture and torment is beyond the pale. Yes yes, I know; these are their beliefs, to which they're entitled. But what an awful thing to say. I mean, this is on the level of the Westboro Baptist Church people picketing the funerals of gay men who have died of AIDS, picketing the funerals of fallen US servicemen and women because they fought for a gay-friendly nation. It's a great big "fuck you" to pretty much everybody grieving this event. Like I said, there are times when talking about religion that must necessarily dictate taking off the gloves, and this is one of them.

So here you go: Fuck off, assholes.