More Katrina idiocy
Unfortunately, Duke is not alone exploiting this tragedy for his own vile ideological ends.
Whereas Duke exploits the tragedy to promote his racist agenda and fire up his white supremacist followers, there are a number of extremist religious leaders out there as well, doing the same thing. The most vile and hateful of these is, as one might expect, the so-called "Reverend" Fred Phelps, he of the God Hates Fags infamy. We've met Freddy (I refuse to dignify him any more by referring to him as "Reverend Phelps") before on this blog, when he had so much sympathy for the Asian tsunami last year that he thanked God for the deaths of at least 2,000 Swedes because, in his twisted world, it was punishment for Swedish tolerance for homosexuality. Freddy was also quite overjoyed at the deaths of 3,000 of his own countrymen and wished for a tsunami to hit the U.S. itself to "cleanse" it of homosexuals. (One also notes that the Hitler Zombie long ago ate Freddy's brain, as he declared, "Canada and America are homo-fascist regimes of Nazi terror!" Oh, and he also advocates the death penalty for homosexuals.) In the interim, Freddy and his sick followers have made names for themselves by picketing at the funerals of soldiers slain in Iraq, rejoicing over all the fallen as "punishment" for our wickedness and homosexuality, thanking God for IEDs and dead soldiers (more photos, news account).
Never one to pass up an opportunity to gloat over the misfortunes of others and lay claim to them as "evidence" of God's wrath, Freddy's been practically having orgasms over the death and devastation wrought by Katrina. He "thanks God" for Katrina, labeling New Orleans "a putrid, stinking, toxic cesspool of fag fecal matter" as he prays for "more dead bodies floating on the fag-semen-rancid waters of New Orleans." I really have to wonder about this guy's obsession with homosexuality and bodily excretions such as semen and feces. I also wonder about a guy who hates homosexuals so much that he manages to forget everything Christianity says about forgiveness and doing good unto others in favor of a Christianity that rejoices in the death and destruction of any perceived as being insufficiently harsh on homosexuals. He even thinks the Bush administration is too gay-friendly:
I've never understood how one could become so twisted with hate for one group that it could dominate one's life so totally. I also realize that criticizing a nutcase like Freddy for being a crazy hate-filled nutcase is like fishing with hand grenades. Nonetheless, I think it's instructive every now and then to remind ourselves that such people exist. However, echoes of their hate can be found in even "mainstream" fundamentalist religious figures. For instance, consider what Nation of Islam leader Louis Farrakhan said in Philadelphia the other day, where he suggested that the devastation caused by Hurricane Katrina was divine punishment for the violence America had inflicted on Iraq:You are pouring gasoline on the raging infernos of God's wrath in Iraq and New Orleans. You have filled your administration with fags and dykes, you idiot - and you propose to add the flaming faggot Izzy Hernandez to your Cabinet. You are living for the devil in blatant defiance of your Creator and leading the country to Hell in a faggot's handbasket. It is now time for you to follow the lead of the king of Nineveh who led his nation to profound repentance upon the preaching of Jonah; "And God saw their works, that they turned from their evil way; and God repented of the evil, that he had said that he would do unto them; and he did it not." Jonah 3:6-10. Let no one deceive you, Mr. President: THERE'S NO OTHER WAY OUT.
And - President LazyAss - you must be sincere and humble before God, for the first time in your pampered life. Your repentance must be utterly sincere and complete. And - as John the Baptist put it - You must bring forth fruits (solid evidence) demonstrating your repentance to be genuine:
"But when he saw many of the Pharisees and Sadducees come to his baptism, he said unto them, O generation of vipers, who hath warned you to flee from the wrath to come? Bring forth therefore fruits meet for repentance." Mat 3:7,8.
The only fruits meet for repentance in today's circumstances are these: Completely rid your administration of fags and dykes; and, recriminalize sodomy and abortion, and impose the death penalty for these crimes. Nothing less will do. Otherwise, we warn you again: Expect worse and more of it from that Outraged God your sins have mightily offended.
Hmmm. Farrakhan doesn't sound all that much different from Freddy, does he?"New Orleans is the first of the cities going to tumble down... unless America changes its course," Farrakhan said.
"It is the wickedness of the people of America and the government of America that is bringing the wrath of God down," he told several hundred people at Tinsley Temple United Methodist Church.
Or what about these? Rick Scaroborough of Vision America (whose advisory board is made up of a who's who of the Christian fundamentalist right and whose Countering the War on Faith conference in October will feature a panoply of famous right wing speakers, including Tom DeLay) and the Judeo-Christian Council for Constitutional Restoration has blamed Hurricane Katrina on gay marriage, among other things (such as bestiality and Israel pulling out of Gaza--I kid you not, you can't make stuff like this up). Another one, J. Grant Swank, Jr., has in essence claimed that the hurricane was God's wrath descended upon New Orleans because of an impending festival scheduled for this Labor Day weekend called Southern Decadence celebrating homosexuality as a lifestyle. So has an evangelical group known as Repent America, although Repent America also noted Mardi Gras and abortion as other examples of "wickedness" that needed to be "cleansed." Says Michael Marcavage:
Of course, it's hard not to point out to Marcavage that most churches of all denominations in New Orleans are underwater as well, and that, for example, half the Catholic priests in New Orleans are unaccounted for. Congregations are scattered, and it's not just the "wicked" who have died by the hundreds because of the flooding. By his own rationale, I have to ask: Is the hurricane also God's judgment on his and everyone else's churches, mosques, and synagogues, not just in New Orleans, but in southern Louisiana, Alabama, and Mississippi? It seems a rather blunt instrument to use, given that its devastation extends hundreds of miles from what these religious nuts believe to be its intended target, that den of iniquity known as New Orleans."We must help and pray for those ravaged by this disaster, but let us not forget that the citizens of New Orleans tolerated and welcomed the wickedness in their city for so long," Marcavage said. "May this act of God cause us all to think about what we tolerate in our city limits, and bring us trembling before the throne of Almighty God," Marcavage concluded.
Many faith-based organizations and charities do prodigious work not just for the victims of hurricane Katrina, but in numerous disasters all over the world, as well as providing day to day assistance for those in need. For example, Catholic Charities, with whom I've had dealings in helping uninsured and indigent patients to obtain the medical care they need without proselytizing, is one such organization, and tragedies like Katrina bring out their best. Unfortunately, tragedies like Katrina also bring out the worst from religious nutcases and political ideologues like Freddy and David Duke.