Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Vengeance, hatred, and irrationality

Jules Winfield The path of the righteous man is beset on all sides by the iniquities of the selfish and the tyranny of evil men. Blessed is he, who in the name of charity and good will, shepherds the weak through the valley of darkness, for he is truly his brother's keeper and the finder of lost children. And I will strike down upon thee with great vengeance and furious anger those who would attempt to poison and destroy my brothers. And you will know my name is the Lord when I lay my vengeance upon thee.

~~Jules Winnfield, “Pulp Fiction”

The news coverage of the Haiti earthquake is dismaying to watch. It is a beautiful place, with very friendly people, and unfortunately, one of the poorest places on the planet. I urge everyone to contribute, if you can, to assist rescue efforts. The White House website has information about where to donate, and every little bit will help.

It was also dismaying to hear and read Pat Robertson's take on it. I'm not the first one to write about this, but I've done my best to not read any opinions on it yet so that I could formulate my own. It's odd, because I was online with a friend and we even mentioned the people who blame natural disasters on God exacting vengeance upon a city or nation for their alleged sins. Not too long after, I read about Robertson's remarks.

Here's the video:

This is the transcript:

And, you know, Kristi, something happened a long time ago in Haiti, and people might not want to talk about it. They were under the heel of the French. You know, Napoleon III and whatever. And they got together and swore a pact to the devil. They said, "We will serve you if you will get us free from the French." True story. And so, the devil said, "OK, it's a deal."

And they kicked the French out. You know, the Haitians revolted and got themselves free. But ever since, they have been cursed by one thing after the other. Desperately poor. That island of Hispaniola is one island. It's cut down the middle. On the one side is Haiti; on the other side is the Dominican Republic. Dominican Republic is prosperous, healthy, full of resorts, et cetera. Haiti is in desperate poverty. Same island. They need to have and we need to pray for them a great turning to God. And out of this tragedy, I'm optimistic something good may come. But right now, we're helping the suffering people, and the suffering is unimaginable.

I'm a tolerant person, but I've had it with self-righteous pricks like Robertson blaming innocent people for incurring God's wrath in the form of natural disasters and weather phenomena. Whether it's people saying that Hurricane Katrina was because God was pissed at those nasty homosexuals in New Orleans (oddly enough, one of the areas spared was the French Quarter and the gay district), or Florida Governor Charlie Crist saying that his state hadn't been hit by hurricanes lately because he had prayed about it, this sort of ignorance is grating on my last nerve.

Pat Robertson First of all, Robertson's remarks...a "pact with the devil?" Are you fucking kidding me? Oh, wait...he says "true story." So it must be true. Really, Pat? Really? I'd like to see the documents showing that the Haitian people made a "pact with the devil." I'd especially love to see the part where the devil is quoted: "OK, it's a deal." No documents, you say? All word of mouth? So where did you get your information? What evidence do you have showing that the Haitian people made a "pact with the devil?"

You all realize this is lunacy, don't you? We are talking, in this case, about the earth shifting, something that happens all the time. Hurricanes and tornadoes happen because of weather patterns...we have such things on our planet, you know. They are all explained quite well by the scientists who study such things, and to blame innocent people for bringing down some vengeful wrath because of their supposed sins—or the sins of their ancestors, generations before!—is complete madness.

Ask yourself this: if that's really what Pat Robertson's God is all about, why on earth would you want anything to do with him? A being apparently so drunk with power that he feels the need to smite anyone who dares to go against him, no matter how small the perceived slight; who punishes the just along with the unjust; who kills because of his petty ego, kills anyone who dares to question his supreme authority, who kills just because he can? That sort of person sounds like a delusional madman to me, and I reject such a person. I reject them completely.

Haiti4 The people of Haiti are suffering, and they've been suffering for a long time. Some of their troubles are of their own making; the political graft and corruption are rampant. It is also a highly agricultural economy, with very few natural resources to export. In talking with a tour guide a few years ago, he fully realized these problems, but had great hopes for his country, and was very proud of the fact that Haiti was the first black democracy in the world, and that their independence came about because of a slave rebellion. To attribute this—obviously a source of pride to that young man—to a "pact with the devil" is not only ludicrous, it's hateful and ignorant, and Robertson should be ashamed. But he won't be. He feels he is perfectly justified in making such ridiculous statements.

I'll tell you what. I've decided that I feel perfectly justified in pointing out how horrible a person he is for saying that this happened because of some bullshit "pact with the devil." I've found my calling, if you will. Whenever I hear stuff like this, I'm going to write about it, and I'm going to call those who utter such nonsense on it: Pat Robertson, you are a delusional idiot. I suggest that people don't accept the ramblings of a delusional idiot and don't accept his bogus explanation for natural phenomena. We've made amazing progress over the years and understand why these things happen; to attribute it to a vengeful God is disrespectful to those who are hurting, suffering, and for far too many, dying.

The people of Haiti deserve our help, not our scorn for some imagined past transgression.

11 comments:

  1. Pat Robertson needs to retire!

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  2. i'm not sure how their god can be loving one minute and then smite the smiters the next. . .me thinks god is a little BPD.


    xxalainaxx

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  3. Pat Robertson needs to be sent somewhere where God can take his wrath out on him.
    Charlatan.
    Piss off fucktard.

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  4. OK. I'm going to throw out something else upon which you may chew. I was talking to a relative recently about hurricanes. There is a theory that they follow the old slave trade routes. It's just a shame that they end up punishing the descendants of the slaves. Really. I kid you not. I have heard this stuff for years.

    As for Haiti, I have posted donation links for both the Red Cross and Doctors without Borders on my Facebook wall. I will be making my donations to both on Friday when I get paid. I will probably also goin this weekend for the first tome in years to donate blood. (I had stopped because I have given so much in the past that it can be difficult to find a vein.) But I know now that I really should give blood as not only am I O-positive bit I'm also classified as a rare donor. Out of the other 12 common phenotypes, I am missing 7 which makes my blood a really good match for even more people. It's so easy to understand this all living in California where we have had three quakes in the past week -- two in the three point something range and a 6.0 that has resulted in a state of emergency in one county.

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  5. Pat Robertson is irrelevant except to himself and people who are essentially lost causes. They believe what he says and there is nothing that anyone can say to persuade them otherwise. I don't personally know any people, not even some of the more conervative Christians that I know who actually are followers of Pat Robertson. To the contray, most of them think that he's a fool.

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  6. I knew you would write about this. I'm infuriated about Robertson's words. I'd be more infuriated if he was worth my anger, but it certainly upsets me that people believe his self-righteous blather. They are all lost souls.

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  7. I saw a clip from Rachel Maddow were an official acknowledges such a deal being made in Hati's past. He also said it was due to the revolt in Hati that the US was able to make the Louisana Purchase and that Columbia, the West Indies and most of Sout America was able to shake off the French.

    Even so, hearing that story only makes me wonder like you did here about the kind of God who would let something like that happen. Can you imagine the kind of suffering endured to where you would want to make such a deal?

    I think someone used the word 'charlatan' in their comments. I don't know how accurate that is, being that Pat is committed to what he believes. But it seems as though his faith has a profit motive that doesn't currency in the saving of lost souls.

    We all came from one place and we all will return to where it all started. Just as we don't know why we are here, we don't know how we will get back. Can't trust in anyone who thinks they know. So I don't worry about Pat Roberson's 'God'. His God simply isn't mine.

    Funny how some religious folks want to explain how these kinds of disasters are for the sins of man, but what about King David or any of the other characters in scripture who took part in rape, murder, and incest?

    Yup... I am just ramblin'... I don't have any conclusion but plenty of questions!

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  8. Evangelical Christianity ... so full of love and compassion.

    BTW - Pat Robertson knows this "true story" because the Devil told him face-to-face ... in bed this morning after they woke up.

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  9. After having been there, and meeting wonderful locals, full of hope and pride, this from Robertson just chaps my hide!

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  10. Preach it to the choir, my friend. This is an awesome entry and i agree with every word!

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  11. I really appreciated Haiti's President 's rebuttal to Robertson.

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