May each of you have the heart to conceive, the understanding to direct, and the hand to execute works that will leave the world a little better for your having been here. -- Ronald Reagan

Monday, November 9, 2009

Looks Like Those Christian Terrorists Are Back

I had written about Christian Terrorists!!! a year ago, about the idea of Christian fundamentalists and Muslim fundamentalists being equivalent. Since then the idea just keeps popping up.

The latest transgression is by none other than Harvey Cox, one of the most influential and insightful theologians of the twentieth century. How a thinker of his stature could fall to this low is beyond me. Writing in the Boston Globe, article here, about the history of religious fundamentalism, he drew the comparison.

Cox: "As the 20th century ended and a new one began, fundamentalism has taken on more formidable shapes, both politically and religiously. Though most of its adherents work through spiritual and educational channels, the small minority that turn to violence have caught the media’s attention. If some seem ready to die for faith, others are ready to kill for it, gunning down abortion doctors in church, hijacking planes, and exploding bombs at weddings. For plenty of thoughtful people, fundamentalism has come to represent the most dangerous threat to open societies since the fall of communism."

My observations in my previous blog show that the comparison is outrageous. In the context Cox puts it, the gunning down of an abortion doctor in church happened exactly one time. No Christian fundamentalist has ever hijacked a plane. Since 1972, when Roe vs Wade was passed, that's thirty two years, eight abortion doctors or staff have been murdered, all of them denounced by Christians. I don't hear any, well maybe very weak, denunciations of acts of Islamofasist violence by Muslims. The massive violence and terror is perpetrated by Muslims. Just look at the hard cold numbers.

I expect such nonsense from anti-Christians, but am very surprised that Harvey Cox expressed it. There's a lot of good observations in the article, and it's worth the reading time. I recommend his most widely read book 'The Secular City: Secularization and Urbanization in Theological Perspective'.

I'm just disappointed that someone I so admired since I was a teenager would say something like this. I'll just chalk it up to an aberration, and hope he doesn't revisit the comparison. Hopefully he'll correct it.

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