Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Irony Of The Decade: Church Leaders Cite US Ethics Crisis

Church leaders in America say there's an ethics crisis in the USA.

Presumably, the answer to this is more religion (at least if you ask them).

Then again, some observers might disagree with that prescription.

After all, mega-popular mega-church preacher Joel Osteen insists that God wants you to be rich. Glorification of wealth, at the expense of other priorities, often fuels a lack of ethics. Or, as the Bible says, "love of money is the root of all evil."

The outspoken evangelical Christian who wanted to be America's #2 leader insists that the war in Iraq is a mission from God. I s'pose she didn't read that bit of the Ten Commandments that said "Thou shalt not kill." Or did I miss the asterisk?

Hate groups of people? Want to see them suffer? There are many choices if you hate homos. And lo and behold, the hate flowed, became law, and most insisted it was love. (I guess they missed the "render unto Caesar" bit and the "speck/log in eye" bit).

Last time I checked, saying one thing and doing another was lying. Lying is ultimately the basis of most of the unethical activity underpinning the present societal mess we find ourselves in.

Whether it's insisting that they "love" people who they hate and exclude, or that they "believe the Bible" while preaching holy get-rich-quick, far too many powerful, mainstream religious leaders have been engaging in it themselves. Which would suggest that ultimately, a fair chunk of the blame can be found inside their own sermons.

4 comments:

anonone said...

"The God of the Old Testament is arguably the most unpleasant character in all fiction: jealous and proud of it; a petty, unjust, unforgiving control-freak; a vindictive, bloodthirsty ethnic cleanser; a misogynistic, homophobic, racist, infanticidal, genocidal, filicidal, pestilential, megalomaniacal, sadomasochistic, capriciously malevolent bully."
- Richard Dawkins, "The God Delusion"

That is who they worship, Brian. That is the god that they believe in. At least Obama mentioned non-believers as part of America. I think that is the first time I ever heard that ever from any politician.

Steve Newton said...

A1
That's not the god I worship; nor, I think, should you confuse the millions of people who manage to use their religious beliefs constructively with the "church leaders" who purport to speak for them.

Curiously, I find the neo-liberal tendency to stereotype all believers as intolerant, racist homophobes (etc etc) to be the equivalent of those on the right who espouse the idea that all gay men are pedophiles, or who believe that skin color has something to do with intelligence or integrity.

anonone said...

Steve,

You can pick and choose from your holy books what you want to believe or not, but the fact is that the Bible is presented by many, such as Warren and his followers, as the infallible word of god.

I don't at all characterize or stereotype believers as "intolerant, racist homophobes", but I do know that the god that many profess to believe in and the holy books that they cite as "his words" and as guides to morality are lacking in both truth and any morality. Unless, of course, one believes that the behaviors cited by Dawkins are moral.

Regardless, it is my opinion that religious services have no place in secular government functions funded by taxpayers, including Warren and Lowery. Nor should any "scripture" serve as a justification for the legislation of morality.

regeya said...

Just as importantly, was it me, or did you just come down as being against the accumulation of wealth?

Sounds awfully socialist...are you one of those hippie Libertarians that people like Lew Rockwell and Murray Rothbard fought so hard to alienate?