Sunday, March 2, 2014

My Public Appeal To Christians Worldwide


Good morning, Christian. I want to talk to YOU about YOUR role in the modern world. As we speak, millions of lives are in the balance, the world over. They have been for quite some time, but right now, this article isn't so much about them as it is about YOU.


See that sign in the picture above? This can be said by ANY of the numerous minority groups being persecuted and targeted for destruction by people claiming, very loudly, to be Christians. 

Oh yes, there are really people who are victims of "Christianity". No, I'm not being facetious or "anti-Christian", and nor am I trying to disrespect YOUR beliefs or just trying to make YOU  feel bad. I just want  YOU to look at the facts.

LGBT people. Black people. White people. Asians. People of other religions. These are people whom religious extremists among Christians - the ChristianISTS of the world, have set out to destroy - at one time or another, by means of propaganda, lies, misrepresentation, legislation and violent oppression, and even extermination.

People like Yowri Museveni, the president of Uganda, has for 5 arduous years dilly-dallied in passing a law that sets life imprisonment for LGBT people, and which at one point would have imposed death for LGBT people. Life imprisonment in a Ugandan jail is scarcely better than execution. Ugandan churches - and not just the leaders of those churches, have been shown in media baying for the blood of LGBT people, of whom they have been fed lies and misinformation by visiting Christian evangelicalists who encouraged the drafting of this odious law, called the "Kill the Gays Bill". This law finally passed just over a week ago. Uganda celebrates its "Christianity" and scapegoats all its societal ills on LGBT people, who are in hiding, being literally killed in the streets in the midst of a witch hunt fueled by religious hate in the name of Christ.

In Nigeria, similar hateful legislation has been recently passed. One of our other neighbors, Malawi has also made the "right noises" which seem to appeal to the increasing tide of religion-fueled hate that seems to be sweeping across Africa. The President of Gambia recently referred to LGBT people as "vermin". Zimbabwe has been hostile to its LGBT community for more than a decade. In Namibia LGBT rights are still in the air and LGBT people there tread lightly.

In South Africa, a country blessed with a strong constitution containing defined protections for minorities against religious persecution, Christian bigots push to have these provisions removed, and continuously push the envelope of what kind of prejudice they can get away with next. Their favorite targets are LGBT people, and religious minorities, including African traditional beliefs. In South Africa, "super-churches", also called "prosperity cults", flourish. They send money and other forms of support to churches in Uganda - churches known to be complicit in the fight to murder LGBT Ugandans, all in the name of "church planting". Local political parties claiming to have a Christian "ethos" show them support, and have in the past even promised to do the same thing here if they could. In South Africa, fundamentalist cults run by foreign nationals mainly from Nigeria have sprung up on almost every street corner in the suburbs, renting small spaces in empty shops, holding services where people preach separation and persecution theology. I have lost count of how many of these little hate churches have sprung up in my own neighborhood - attended by Nigerian faithful and local people they convince to go along. The theology of hate is spreading here, in the name of Christ and wearing the mask of love. 

In Russia, Vladimir Putin, the leader of Russia, also heeded the words of visiting Christian evangelicalists to make war on human rights and to destroy LGBT people once and for all. He is supported in this by the politically powerful and affluent Russian Orthodox Church. Roving gangs of thugs kidnap and torture suspected LGBT people. Putin has this past week decided to redefine Russia from a constitutional democracy with freedom of religion into a Christian state, a theocracy which is not following the tenets of Christianity as taught by Christ, by founding it on scapegoating, blame and fear-mongering and separation of minorities from his idealist concept of a Christian society. He works to remove LGBT people from Russian society by legislated harassment, arrest, torture and imprisonment - even going so far as to invade Russia's neighbor Ukraine at an opportune moment on some paper-thin excuse, to the dismay of the Western world. Ukraine, formerly a part of the Soviet Union, is a country which shows open support for individual liberties and civil rights for LGBT people, and many Ukranians showed open support for Russian LGBT people before, during and after the shameful Sochi Olympics, known as "the Olympics of Hate" held in Russia. Russian forces stand poised to enter Ukraine as I type this.

In America, numerous states have clamored to pass new laws which will allow business owners, doctors, nurses, hospitals, police departments, fire departments - in fact anyone - to refuse service to someone they perceive as being LGBT. In some states these laws passed and were after a time, annulled by the weight of popular condemnation. In others, these laws still pend. Though many Christians around the world do not want to hear it, and do not want to believe it, there is a kind of person who also calls themselves "Christian" but who has acid for blood and a heart filled with hatred for their fellow human beings - regardless of whether these people are known to them, or related to them. They are the fanatics of the world, and they use religion as means to an end - self satisfaction, self-empowerment, hubris, and pride - coming together as Christian nationalism, or Christianism. 

In America, people like Scott Lively lobby governments around the world - and even in states in the USA itself - to adopt aggressive even genocidal legislation that will isolate, segregate and devastate LGBT people everywhere. Lively is a genocidal maniac who has openly stated that his mission is to destroy LGBT people everywhere because he believes that is his defined Christian purpose. Lively considers what he does, to be "evangelism". He brings with him violence, suffering, sorrow, hopelessness and death - all in the name of Christianity.

Christians seldom seem to remember that Christ did not deny service to non-believers. He healed them, he counseled them, he was kind to them. Not only did he not advocate killing, but he even brought people back from the dead. He didn't turn anyone away or try to isolate believers from non-believers. Yet today there are Christians who act in a completely opposite manner and they do so in the very name of the same Christ. They try to segregate those they perceive as being different or having different beliefs to themselves - even within their own religion. Then they work to slander, persecute and eliminate those whom they have segregated. They clamor to gain financial and political power in order to influence the state and make restrictive laws which will essentially punish and penalize those whom they disagree with and dislike. They use Christ to justify their cruelty and the malice in their own hearts. 

This is NOT Christian. This is not Christ-like. Is it? What do YOU think?

Yet - overwhelmingly - they seem to SPEAK FOR YOU. And so far, for two thousand years, YOU and others like you have LET THEM. 

YOU have done so by saying nothing about it when people judged, criticized or abused other people in your presence. YOU have done so by not speaking out whenever YOU had the chance to defend people essentially being bullied on the religious ticket of hatred and intolerance, whenever one of YOUR leaders and ministers and pastors has stood up, thumped his bible and used it as a weapon against innocent people and encouraged YOU to do the same.  YOU have FAILED YOUR FAITH each time you sat back quietly and just let it pass unchallenged in order to LET them.



YOU have sat silently because they are the leaders of YOUR church and YOU don't think YOU have the right to say anything about it. After all, what do YOU know about religion, the bible, what God says about homosexuality, or tolerance for other religions? YOU likely think because YOU are probably not trained in theology as they are, so who are YOU to challenge them?

Do YOU really need to be trained in theology to know compassion? Do YOU need to have a piece of paper from a seminary or bible college to know what cruelty is? Can YOU really not tell the difference between love and hate? YOU have allowed them to vent their hate and YOU have allowed them to isolate people they didn't like. Is that love? YOU have allowed them to campaign for injustice and persecution without speaking out against them. Is that what Jesus would do?

The next time YOU go to YOUR church, take a look at the empty space on the bench beside YOU, and imagine who might have been sitting there, if it were not for the hate people perceive coming out from Christianity in general. Now take a look at all the other empty spaces. 

Where are all those people? 

Some believe at home now, some stopped believing altogether - and some are no longer on this Earth. Hate and persecution takes away hope, it destroys happiness and it ruins lives - and it kills. There are people for whom this is acceptable, and they celebrate it in the name of Christ.

How does this make YOU feel?

How do YOU think this makes people being victimized by Christians feel?

How do YOU think Christ would feel about this?

What do YOU think Christ would say to not just all Christians about this, but to  YOU?

YOU cannot take back injustice and YOU cannot undo pain and suffering. YOU cannot take back cruelty. YOUR 'thoughts and prayers' deliver nothing. YOUR apologies will not cancel death, YOUR flowers will not mop up pools of blood. But YOU CAN stop it.

Are YOU a Christian? How do YOU feel about the sign in the first photo? What can YOU do to make things right? YOU can stand with the victims of religious fundamentalist hate instead of sitting on the sidelines giving tacit consent, YOU can make a difference for others by obstructing the haters. I can't think of anything more Christ-LIKE than that. 

Are YOU a Christianist? Are YOU a Christian? Or are YOU Christ-like?

As always, the choice is  YOURS.

What YOU choose to do about it is up to YOU.

References:

Slouching Towards Kampala: Uganda’s Deadly Embrace of Hate
No special comment needed’ on Ugandan law criminalising homosexuality – Pandor
Zuma’s ANC rejects DA motion to condemn Uganda’s anti-gay bill
US HATE PASTOR’S LIES BEHIND UGANDAN GAY BILL
Video – Gospel of Intolerance

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