Religions Purposefully Mislead Flocks
I was driving past the Bethany Lutheran Church in Duluth, MN yesterday and could not help but pause to take a picture of their current sign:
For those of you unfamiliar with the Marriage issue here in MN, here are the quick details. Tuesday, MN residents will be voting on an Amendment to our Constitution that would define marriage as being between a man and woman. Therefore, a yes vote would support the Amendment, and a no vote would be in opposition to adding this Amendment to our State Constitution.
As my regular readers will be aware, I am very much in support of same-sex marriage. I have written extensively on this topic, you can read all of those posts here, as I don’t really want to get into that today.
Instead I want to focus on the blatant attempt at misdirection and political advertising from the Bethany Lutheran Church. I cannot seem to find where in the bible that Jesus was speaking in Genesis 2. I am a pretty competent reader and am fairly certain that I did not miss it (insert sarcasm when reading that last statement). This sign is pure lunacy. To me, it is one tiny piece of evidence in support of something that I believe—that most Christians have not read their bible and really have no clue what it says. Further, I am quite sure that most people walking and driving by also have no clue what the bible states, but all know and probably respect the concept that is Jesus. This sign is nothing more than pure propaganda of the sort that would make any politician proud…ie…full of shit.
I have to assume that the Pastor(s) of this church are well aware of the fact that Jesus does not make an appearance in Genesis (or anywhere in the Old Testament). There is no reason to post a sign of this nature unless the goal is to purposefully mislead passers by. This is pure dishonesty, that seems to becoming a hallmark of modern day Christianity. It can no longer be allowed to stand unchallenged. (Yes I wrote a letter to the Pastor of the Church, I will update you all if I get a response).
Second, this sign, at least to me, is a clear violation of Church and State. Churches should not be lobbying for political ends that do not affect them. This Amendment will have zero impact on this church. This is an important distinction to make. As much I feel that the Catholic Church is incorrect in its view of the HHS mandate, I do understand why they are upset, as it can potentially affect them. Same-sex marriage affects no one except for homosexuals. This Church should not be posting signs of this nature…unless they agree to be treated like other corporations (which is really what churches are) and subject themselves to taxes. If they agree to this, then they can post whatever nonsensical sign they want, so long as they are not infringing on the separation of Church and State.
The final issue that I want to bring up is a bit more complicated. It is the height of hypocrisy that many Churches and theists wish to enter the political fray and use their religion their as justification for their beliefs, while at the same time, refusing to accept any criticism of those beliefs. This is a situation that can no longer be allowed to stand. If any of us says that we believe X because of Z, then the rest of us have the right to ask some questions about Z…unless Z is religious. This hypocrisy and special treatment has gone on for far too long in the U.S. It is time for us atheists and other secularly minded people to no longer accept the idea that religion is “off the table” of discussion.
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