I woke up this morning wondering what a blog about religion news could have to say about a gunman walking into a midnight showing of the “Dark Knight Rises” and stalking up and down the aisles, killing at least 12. I didn’t expect to be reporting on a politician who wasted little time blaming the massacre on the “ongoing attack on Judeo-Christian beliefs.”
Of course, I don’t believe in the war on religion. Never have I felt any limitations on living as a Christian. And just because not everyone agrees with, or even opposes, my beliefs does mean they are under attack.
But the Huffington Post reports that in a radio interview Rep. Louie Gohmert of Texas had this to say:
“You know what really gets me, as a Christian, is to see the ongoing attacks on Judeo-Christian beliefs, and then some senseless crazy act of a derelict takes place,” Gohmert said.
“Some of us happen to believe that when our founders talked about guarding our virtue and freedom, that that was important,” he said. “Whether it’s John Adams saying our Constitution was made only for moral and religious people ... Ben Franklin, only a virtuous people are capable of freedom, as nations become corrupt and vicious they have more need of masters. We have been at war with the very pillars, the very foundation of this country.”
“People say ... where was God in all of this?” Gohmert said. “We’ve threatened high school graduation participations, if they use God’s name, they’re going to be jailed ... I mean that kind of stuff. Where was God? What have we done with God? We don’t want him around. I kind of like his protective hand being present.”
Read the rest here.
President Obama, on the other hand, had this to say:
Now, even as we learn how this happened and who’s responsible, we may never understand what leads anybody to terrorize their fellow human beings like this. Such violence, such evil is senseless. It’s beyond reason. But while we will never know fully what causes somebody to take the life of another, we do know what makes life worth living. The people we lost in Aurora loved and they were loved. They were mothers and fathers; they were husbands and wives; sisters and brothers; sons and daughters, friends and neighbors. They had hopes for the future and they had dreams that were not yet fulfilled.
And if there’s anything to take away from this tragedy it’s the reminder that life is very fragile. Our time here is limited and it is precious. And what matters at the end of the day is not the small things, it’s not the trivial things, which so often consume us and our daily lives. Ultimately, it’s how we choose to treat one another and how we love one another.
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