Creationist: Murdering Jews may be preferable to lying to prevent the murder

November 14, 2009

I’m cutting the monster a lot of slack with the headline.

P. Z. Myers publicized the e-mail exchange involving Bodie Hodge, a minor deity at the anti-science, creationist organization Answers in Genesis (AiG).  Myers was nice to the guy, contrary to the usual creationist cartoon of Myers as somehow immoral for being a non-worshipper of gods.  Well, he was nicer than I would have been.  But Myers expects Christians to exhibit no sense of shame, no common sense, and twisted morality.  I expect bettter of them.

A reader posed that age-old question to Hodge:  Is the Christian rule against lying so strong that a Christian should tell Nazi troops where Jewish families are hiding?  Hodge weasels later by saying he hopes he never has to make such a choice, and that he really doesn’t know how he’d act in that situation.  But this comes only after he says that telling  a lie to Nazis to save Jews will get one burned in hell.  And then he goes on to note it’s better to be in good with God than to act morally.

In other words, better to become an accomplice in the murder of Jews than to stand up against murderers.

I don’t get how these charlatans of religion, reason to such a point.

What would Jesus do?  We know.  When the crowd was threatening to stone to death a woman guilty of adultery and she sought refuge with Jesus, Jesus stood up to the mob and saved her life.  Just execution of Biblical law or shelter the accused, Jesus stood against the murder, even murder sanctioned by the religious rules of the community.

We also know that scripture endorses deception from time to time.  You know these AiG clowns are charlatans when they say stupid stuff like this.  Hodge tries to explain away another case of deception by inventing a scenario not found in scripture in which the lie doesn’t get told.

He’s forgotten the story of Jacob and Esau, and how Jacob and his mother conpsired to deceive Isaac in order to steal away Esau’s birthright (Esau and Jacob were twins, by the way).  Jacob got away with the deed, was then blessed by God.  He took a new name:  Israel.  He lived on to be the seed of Judaism, the religion Jesus followed and the foundation of Christianity.

To AiG, it appears that scripture is just a dusty old book, except when they can twist it to support their bigotry.  Here’s irony for you:  The story of Jacob is in Genesis.  You know, as in “Answers in Genesis.”  They don’t even know their own namesake book!

Here in America, as a nation we overcame that morality-or-religion problem with Huck Finn.  The ill-educated young teen, an absentee to grammar, faces the moral decision as he floats down the Mississippi with Jim, an escaped slave who has saved Huck’s life and is in other ways a very good friend.  Huck notes that the preachers are all agreed that Huck’s moral duty is to turn Jim in as an escaped slave, to condemn Jim to a continued life of slavery, should Jim survive the lashing.  Huck Finn puts the dilemma squarely:  Whether to obey God and turn in Jim to the authorities, or to burn in hell and let Jim live the life of a free man.  Huck agonizes, but decides:  He’ll burn in hell rather than give away his friend.

Myers wrote:

As a non-Bible believing amoral godless atheist, my first thought was that this is trivial: you lie your pants off. The ‘crime’ of telling a lie pales into insignificance against the crime of enabling the death of fellow human beings.

According to Bodie Hodge of AiG, though, I’m wrong. The good Christian should reject lies, Satan’s tools, in all circumstances, and should immediately ‘fess up the location of the Jews. He backs it up with Bible quotes, too.

If we love God, we should obey Him (John 14:15). To love God first means to obey Him first–before looking at our neighbor. So, is the greater good trusting God when He says not to lie or trusting in our fallible, sinful minds about the uncertain future?

Consider this carefully. In the situation of a Nazi beating on the door, we have assumed a lie would save a life, but really we don’t know. So, one would be opting to lie and disobey God without the certainty of saving a life–keeping in mind that all are ultimately condemned to die physically. Besides, whether one lied or not may not have stopped the Nazi solders from searching the house anyway.

As Christians, we need to keep in mind that Jesus Christ reigns. All authority has been given to Him (Matthew 28:18), and He sits on the throne of God at the right hand of the Father (Acts 2:33; Hebrews 8:1). Nothing can happen without His say. Even Satan could not touch Peter without Christ’s approval (Luke 22:31). Regardless, if one were to lie or not, Jesus Christ is in control of timing every person’s life and able to discern our motives. It is not for us to worry over what might become, but rather to place our faith and obedience in Christ and to let Him do the reigning. For we do not know the future, whereas God has been telling the end from the beginning (Isaiah 46:10).

Gosh. I never thought of it that way. So…all those Christians who sheltered Jews during WWII are actually burning in hell right now for their sinful wickedness? That is so counterintuitive, it must be true!

One more time we should side with morality, and against creationist distortions of Christianity and morality.

With all the learning they get at that reeking cesspool the creationism museum, you’d think they could demonstrate the moral fiber of a tobacco-chewing, food-stealing, school-cutting runaway teen, Huckleberry Finn.

Full AiG post below the fold (I expect them to strike it down when they rethink; let all Christians pray to God they do rethink).

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Stealth malaria promotion in favoring DDT over brown pelicans

November 14, 2009

Another blogger decided to take some potshots at the environmental protection success that banning DDT was is. laments that the brown pelican flew off the Endangered Species List this week.  “Brown pelicans 1, brown human beings 0,” the headline reads.  The piece claims that banning DDT use in America has somehow increased malaria, or prolonged it, in Africa and Asia.

Clearly the writer can’t didn’t read a map, or figure distances, and knows nothing knew little about the migratory habits of mosquitoes.  Stopping the spraying of DDT in Arkansas didn’t stop the use or manufacture of DDT in Africa nor Asia, anywhere.  Nor did mosquitoes not killed in America fly to Africa to infect kids.  Someone who has decided to rail against wise science probably isn’t interested much in the facts, though.

I responded there:

DDT has never been banned in Africa, nor Asia.  Today, China and India together manufacture thousands of tons of DDT for use around the world.

Odd — in the nations where DDT was banned (for use on agriculture, never to fight malaria), malaria is eradicated or all but eradicated.  In those nations where DDT is still legal, still manufactured, and still used in great quantities, malaria runs rampant.

Perhaps a lack of DDT doesn’t have anything to do with the spread of malaria.

There are very few, if any, serious malaria fighters asking for DDT.  Improved medical care is the basis for beating malaria in humans.  Malaria is a parasite that must live for part of its life cycle in mosquitoes, and for part of its life cycle in humans.  If your goal is to wipe out malaria, you could do it more effectively by wiping out the humans that harbor the parasite.  That would be stupid and cruel, and very expensive.

Fortunately, DDT is not a powerful acute poison to use against the mammals where malaria breeds.  Perhaps unfortunately, it’s no panacea against malaria, either.

Why did African malaria fighters stop using DDT in the middle 1960s?  Mosquitoes had become resistant and immune to DDT.

Ronald Reagan once said for every serious problem there is a solution that is simple, easy, and wrong.  DDT is that simple, easy and wrong solution for malaria.

Why is this man so bigoted Let’s hope it’s ignorance of the issue and not bigotry against brown beings that he thinks leads anyone to think the brown pelican should have been sacrificed, and that  he thinks brown Africans are too stupid to figure out how to fight malaria with DDT, if DDT would in fact save them?  [See Mr. Leap’s comment below. Not stupid at all, he just didn’t have the facts.  Great to find someone willing to admit error.  Clearly, I was wrong assuming he knew better — see edits throughout the post.  It’s actually pleasant to discover one was wrong in a case like this.]

Rachel Carson was right: We should have restricted the use of DDT to save wild populations of animals, and to have preserved its efficacy for fighting malaria in carefully planned and delivered programs to fight malaria and other insect-borne diseases around the world.  Carson proposed we use integrated pest management (IPM) to fight disease, and this is the program and process Africans and Asians have turned to over the past decade as other slap-dash methods of fighting disease faltered.

In diverting attention from improving medical care to fight malaria, to a hopeless campaign to reintroduce DDT where it would not work the miracle claimed, favors too many people favor  malaria over the kids in reality.  Odd position for a health professional to take, and we can be relatively certain that he’s responding to political hackery, and not basing his views on any sound science or history.

The brown pelicansmigration from the Endangered Species List pays high tribute to Rachel Carson’s views on saving life in the wild, and verification once again that she was right.  Perhaps its time more people paid attention to her accurate and effective ideas about how to fight human disease, without trying to poison all of Africa.

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