Jewish Journal


August 14, 2008

Confusing a conservative Christian for a cult leader



Jonestown was no laughing matter. More than 900 people died in one of the most memorable mass suicides in modern history when reality began to unwind for Jim Jones’ People’s Temple, the cult he had relocated from California to Guyana. (I’m from San Diego, so I can’t overlook Heaven’s Gate.) Jones was a demagogue, and his followers paid ultimately for it.

But I couldn’t help but laugh last night when I heard someone confuse that Jones with Bob Jones. Bob is, indeed, an awfully common name. So too is Jones. But when I think Bob Jones I think of the fundamentalist Christian university in South Carolina that refused to admit blacks until 1971 and still forbids dancing.

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