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Going To Church For The Lynching

April 13, 2015

Going to church doesn’t make one a Christian any more than standing in a garage makes one a car.  Last week , I finished reading a book about the history of lynching in the South.  One picture from southeast Texas particularly disturbed me.  It showed 30 or 40 people, including children, standing outside in the churchyard of  a white clapboard church.  All had big smiles on their faces and one could tell they were enjoying themselves.

There was a good fire going beneath the yard’s main tree.  One could imagine that the congregation was preparing to have a good old-fashioned  bar-b-cue. It was with horror that one saw hanging from the tree a young black man his body smoking from the burned flesh. As a Catholic, it reminded me of the Counter-Reformation and the burning-at-the-stake of a heretic.  We Christians have prepared the path for the Islamic Republic (ISIS) in Iraq and Syria as to how to prepare a burning Hell on Earth.

If one studies the history of the Abrahamic religions, it is hard to compete with our skill in causing pain and suffering to our fellow man.  Christians can criticize the Moslem extremists but the real criticism is that they are very late to the game.  This year we celebrate the 70th anniversary of the German Death Camps .   The civil authorities in Poland , and more recently in Bosnia , are remembering their supportive acts in the slaughter of Jews and moslems  in their respective countries .  All this year our own country has been in an uproar over the murder of black suspects by the police .   For good measure , let us remember  the murder of nine black Christians in their own church in Charleston , South Carolina — the American Bible Belt .  Do the religious leaders  of the Abrahamic religions teach a good bit of hate with their ” love one another ” preaching ?  One wonders ! Or is it a fact of human genetics that there is only the thinnest veneer of acculturation that separates us from the wild beasts .  Even poor Cecil the lion in Zimbabwe was no match for the American trophy hunter from America .  Ah yes , a day for the kill in the name of God or human ego !

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