A couple of items came across my desk today that I would like to share and comment on:
New Orleans Mayor Says God Mad at U.S.
Mayor Ray Nagin suggested Monday that Hurricanes Katrina and Rita and other storms were a sign that “God is mad at America” and at black communities, too, for tearing themselves apart with violence and political infighting.
“Surely God is mad at America. He sent us hurricane after hurricane after hurricane, and it’s destroyed and put stress on this country,” Nagin, who is black, said as he and other city leaders marked Martin Luther King Day.
He also claimed that God wanted New Orleans to be a “chocolate” city again, infering that the city had a mix of blacks and whites.
Nagin said that God is mad at the US because of the on going war in Iraq.
“Surely he doesn’t approve of us being in Iraq under false pretenses. But surely he is upset at black America also. We’re not taking care of ourselves.”
God was not available for comment.
Seriously, the Mayor knows the real rational reason why New Orleans was severely affected by the storms and it wasn’t because God was mad. The reason the city was hit so hard was because Rita and Katrina hit the area and the federal and state governments tried to build storm defenses on the cheap. Typically, those with the most to lose, lose the most in natural disasters because people who have the means get out of the way.
Wanting a more diverse city should be the goal not because a God wants it, but because it is the right thing to do. Besides if God was mad why would He ignore the hundreds of years New Orleans has been a party city and pick only now to mess things up.
Group of ministers complain to IRS about church politicking
COLUMBUS, Ohio — A group of religious leaders have accused two evangelical churches of improperly promoting an Ohio candidate for governor and want the Internal Revenue Service to investigate.
The 31 leaders from nine denominations signed a letter Sunday asking the IRS to determine if the churches should lose tax-exempt status because of their support for Secretary of State Kenneth Blackwell, one of three Republicans seeking the nomination.
The complaint to the IRS alleges that the Rev. Rod Parsley of World Harvest Church in Columbus and the Rev. Russell Johnson of Fairfield Christian Church in Lancaster improperly used their churches and affiliated entities for partisan politics.
The complaint alleges that Blackwell was the only gubernatorial candidate showcased in church-sponsored events conducted by Parsley and Johnson. It also alleges that the evangelists’ voter-registration campaign was conducted to support Blackwell and that biased voter education materials were distributed by the churches for Blackwell’s candidacy.
I posted about Parsley and his effort in supporting Blackwell for governor back in October (see Reclaiming Ohio – the farce that was) and I complained about the appearance that Parsley and his group, Ohio Restoration Project, was endorsing Blackwell. At the October event Blackwell was the only candidate to appear. Now it seems the group is continuing to back only Blackwell. Rev. Russell Johnson disagreed:
“It’s sad to see the religious left and the secular left forge an unholy alliance against people of faith,” Johnson said. “We have invited people to pray, to serve and to engage, and candidly, we will not be intimidated or bullied by these folks.”
Secular Left? Nope.
Here is list of the religious groups that complained to the IRS:
The clergy who signed the complaint are affiliated with the American Baptist Churches in the U.S.A.; the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ); the Episcopal Church; the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America; Judaism; the United Church of Christ; the United Methodist Church; Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.); and the Unitarian Universalist Association.
It seems just about every sect except Catholics and no Secular Humanists, Atheists, or any other non-religious group.
Johnson is just name calling to deflect his unethical actions.