Bart Mendoza 5 a.m., Dec. 8
"When you pray do not be like the hypocrites! They love to stand up and pray in the houses of worship and on the streetcorners, so that everyone will see them. I assure you, they have been paid in full.
"But when you pray, go to your room, close the door, and pray to your Father, who is unseen. And your Father, who sees what you do in private, will reward you!" --From the Gospel of Matthew 6:5-6 (RSV)
Well, well, look who dared show their mugs in public? The Pride of Wichita, Kansas--The Hillsboro Baptist Church, aka: "Bash those we don't like in the Name of Jesus!" Right now, they are on a San Diego swing, calling President Obama "The Antichrist." Oh, they are also going after Jews and Gays as well.
Yeesh! First, they picket the funerals of AIDS victims, be they gay or straight. Then they spread their "message" to the funerals of fallen service members, claiming that the deaths of our service members, be it in combat or not, was "God's Judgement" for tolerating homosexuality.
And now, this?
Frankly, "Reverend" Fred and his followers may draw crowds of onlookers (mostly holding their own signs condemning the "Haters For Jesus" across the street from them)...but the publicity over the whole hoo-hah has given the Hillsboro Baptist Church the publicity they sought for their cause.
Add to that kettle of aroused Western Diamondbacks this little gem. Some pastor--on Halloween, yet--is going to be holding a book-burning outside of his church. Guess what's going in the pyre?
The Holy Bible!
One one version of the Good Book--The Traditional King James Version--will be spared the flames. All others--plus contemporary Christian literature--get turned into ash and cinders as "Satanic." The preacher basicly said he wanted to "light a fire under the congregation" by this action.
Freedom of Religion is the first freedom ensured under the First Amendment to the United States Constitution. This is why America has become a "Supermarket of Salvation," if you would. There is no "one faith" here that all must follow, back by governmental funding and support.
Tom Jefferson and James Madison saw what was going on under THAT system, which was the policy for most European nations. It did not impress them...and so the Freedom to Worship as we see fit (without government interference) was made a right--one of many, certainly.
Activities such as by the Hillsboro Baptist "Away Team" and that Bible-burning chicken-fried snake may be allowed under the "Establishment Cause" (as well as under Freedom of Speech). However, they-and-their-messages are not protected from being rebuked in the press, nor by their fellow Americans, as nothing more than bigotry in Biblical clothing.
If you must hate? Do not drag God, Jesus, or The Holy Bible into your morass-filled swamp. The damage you do to Christianity by your actions not only show your ignorance. You also destroy the credibility of your position...and your cause...by such so-called "justification ."
For you will not be seen as worthy of being followed--but as buffoons worthy of only scorn and ridicule!
And, that, I feel, is their just reward...paid in full!