Tuesday, September 13, 2005
Many students have told me that they have not discussed the hurricane at all or "very briefly" in their classes. This is shocking to me, especially with all the academia talk about the "teachable moment" that has relevance and meaning to students. For something to happen to our nation that the president called "worse than 9/11", I would think the response by the university would be appropriate to it.
9/11 and 9/12 the university came to a standstill and every class discussed the event. Now, barely a mention in the classrooms. Of course, the student newspaper is still covering the bars downtown and the shows on campus, though there was (finally!) a below-the-fold front page article on ribbon sales to help the victims in today's paper.
In the meantime I couldn't stand waiting. I organized a fundraising opportunity just with my classes and we were able to raise $400.00. When I went to Lowes, where they are matching the funds, I met a cashier whose daughter was in New Orleans singing at one of the casinos there. We talked for sometime and finally she asked," did you see that 8 year old boy who looked directly in the camera and said 'this is ridiculous'? I told her I had. She said, "Out of the mouths of babes" and let the matter drop. If a person has an empathic bone in their body, they know, just as that boy knew, the response was ridiculous. Here, here, here, and here are some vids that may put all of this in perspective.
Now on to this other, what, perspective? Sad really. My dad forwarded me this article by a guy named John Piper, some southern Baptist, who basically pens the idea that "we" deserved the disaster. here are some of the main claims within the piece:
Whatever judgment has fallen, it is we who deserve itÂall of us. And whatever mercy is mingled with judgment in New Orleans neither we nor they deserve....
God sent Jesus Christ into the world to save sinners. He did not suffer massive shame and pain because Americans are pretty good people. The magnitude of ChristÂs suffering is owing to how deeply we deserve KatrinaÂall of us....
I do wonder what he would say if it were his grandchild floating face-down in shit infested waters whose bloated body was being picked at by rats, but that's just me.
He reminds me of this guy who said:
"I believe the devastating hurricane that hit the United States occurred because people in Iraq or Afghanistan -- maybe a mother who had lost her son or a son whose parents were killed or a woman who was raped -- were praying for God and God accepted their prayers."
We deserved it, because we turned from God and started an unnecessary war. Or how about Scarborough:
After September 11, 2001, "God bless America" was on everyone's lips. But what, exactly, are we asking God to bless - a nation moving a breakneck speed toward homosexual marriage, a nation awash in pornography, a nation in which our children are indoctrinated in perversion in the public schools, a nation in which most public displays of The Ten Commandments are considered offensive to the Constitution, a nation in which the elite does all in its considerable power to efface our Biblical heritage?
Others say it was due to gays. It's ridiculous on its face and I won't waste time writing a refutation.
All these so-called religious nutcases will be judged by their own harsh God. The Taliban, the evangelicals, all those who say "love Jesus" but preach hate and fear are false prophets in the truest sense. John Piper exclaims: "But God commits no crimes when he brings famine, flood, and pestilence on the earth."
I don't know what so-called God Mr. Piper believes in, but that is not my God. My God doesn't bring those things, but He does bring love and compassion and the ability to reach out and assist those who need it. He can keep his God. I want nothing to do with him.