(Controversy courtesy of Pharyngula)
As many of you have no doubt already heard, some disturbed young man took it upon himself to gear up for war and go on a shooting rampage in a Colorado theater.
James Holmes, Colorado Shooter, Described as 'Normal' Christian Boy Amid Mental Health Investigation
James Eagan Holmes has been described as a shy and well-mannered young man by a neighbor, who claims the Colorado shooting suspect was heavily involved in his local Presbyterian church.
My personal response is the same as the Pekka-Eric Auvinen debacle. He was unhinged. Did religion drive him to do it? Of course not, any more than ‘evolutionism’ caused Auvinen to do as he did. My main issue is that religion doesn’t really do much of anything in this world, except give crazy people rationalizations to do what they’re going to do anyways. If we lose religion, that’s one less umbrella to hide under.
There are of course knee-jerk responses, in lieu of all the facts unknown (as of yet). Here’s a risible one:
A piece I wrote last weekend on Christian businesses prompted a snarling response from a reader who clearly was no follower of the Son of God. “Hail Satan!” it closed.
I thought nothing of the comment, chalking it up to the hostility Christians sometimes face from non-believers. That is, until I saw the news reports of the horrific shootings today at a suburban Denver movie theater.
The suspected triggerman, 24-year-old James Holmes, will be described variously as “troubled” or “unstable” or “detached from reality.” But I am convinced that the young killer was operating under satanic influence.
Of course, to attribute today’s murder spree in the Rock Mountain State to the supernatural machinations of the evil one is to invite ridicule from those who refuse believe there are demonic forces at work in this fallen world of ours.
But the Scripture warns us that “we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places.
An invisible wrestling match? What an image that conjures up. And – who can rear themselves? There’s plenty of folks out there who’d never leave home if they could.
And Onenewsnow, those despicable fearmongering bible-thumpers? Who do they blame? Why, all the usual suspects:
I can't help but feel that to some extent, we're reaping what we've been sowing as a society. We said to God, "Get out of the public arena." Lawsuit after lawsuit, often by misguided "civil libertarians," have chased away any fear of God in the land -- at least in the hearts of millions.
The article goes on to echo all the hollow strawmans we’ve heard before – the Founding Fathers said this, nobody believes in hell anymore, and no matter how the language is couched, it boils down to one thing: their invisible, imaginary friend is a raging narcissist and sociopath, who will heap piles of eternal pain on you if you don’t insert your nose right up his imaginary ass and sing muffled hosannas to his intestinal tract. It’d be pathetic, if it weren’t so scary.
On the flip side of the coin, and just as ridiculous, is Debunking Christianity’s take on the mess:
It’s ridiculous: there’s no way to tell if Holmes would have done it (or not) had he been of any specific ideological bent. History has had its share of bloodthirsty lunatics. Mussolini was an atheist, Attila the Hun was an animist, Xavier was a Catholic, Torquemada was a Dominican, Charlie Manson a self-proclaimed messiah, Jim Jones another self-proclaimed messiah…the list goes on. What did all those people have in common? They were crazy enough to murder people to achieve their ends. Some were even nuttier than that.
The breakdown is this: he was a lone loon. It wasn’t video games, or evolution, or religion that prompted him to go bugfuck crazy. It was a chemical imbalance that shorted out his circuits.
Till the next post, then.