REUTERS/Alessandro Bianchi/file photo
One of the saddest occurrences in America is that the cultural war is morphing into a religious war, often taking shape as a battle between faith and science. A good illustration is the recent hospitalization of Cardinal Burke to the Covid 19 virus. The longtime conservative covid conspiracy buff and denier was placed on a ventilator at a Rome hospital.
During a homily last December, Burke called covid the “Wuhan virus,” a phrase referring to the city where covid originated and made popular by former President Donald Trump and his allies that are now considered derogatory. Burke also claimed, “it has been used by certain forces, inimical to families and to the freedom of nations, to advance their evil agenda.”
He went on to criticize fellow members of the church for not believing they’d be protected from the virus by believing in Jesus.
There have been of course, many stories of Covid deniers unfortunately learning the hard way that the good lord wanted them to make responsible decisions based on science. And many of them, sadly, continued to deny rationality and reason on their deathbeds and subsequently to their graves.
Like the unvaccinated nurse last week who lost both her baby and her own life, Haley Richardson. What a sad story. This was her last post:
"Here in the dark, in the wee hours of the morning, it is so easy to pretend that all of this was just a nightmare or that I'm just here in this hospital bed due to my own issues with COVID," she said. "Not for anything being wrong with my sweet baby girl whom I thought I was protecting in my own womb."
She continued, "I know the prognosis and I know the reality. And while part of me may start to acknowledge this, the other part of me still believes God is still the God of miracles and is in control above all else. I hope and pray for miracles, but having said that I am also praying for his will to be done. If there has ever been a time to ask for something to be taken out of my own hands and put in his, it is now."
Haley made her choice and ultimately it was a fatal one. Of course it is easy for me to suggest that god gave her a brain for a reason but there are many people in this country who think that Jesus is going to protect them and that they don't have a worry in the world. This attitude has even surfaced locally this week.
Two children from Springs Charter Schools in Temecula, Drew and Victoria Nelson, were banned from attending class because they refuse to wear masks. Evidently they will not wear masks because their father Gary Nelson says that they are in fact tools of Satan's oppression.
“The Bible says we’re made in the image of God and Satan tries to cover that up. A mask is a sign of oppression,” Nelson said Thursday. “If it was Muslim, Jewish or something of a more high-profile minority religion in this country, yes, they would have accommodated ... just to say they weren’t discriminating based on that religion. But they feel safe because it’s Christianity.”
Rather than perceiving that the mask requirement was drafted to protect them and their fellow students, the father sees it as a case of religious discrimination. How do you reason with these people? Why are they so blinded by their pious self righteousness that they fail to see that they are harming their fellow citizens and the greater good? Pure selfishness if you ask me.
Of course the news wire is riddled with similar stories these days. Rick Wiles, Wade Morris, Greg Locke, Tim Parsons, Danny Reeves, Darrell Boone, there are just too many faith leaders who have gotten sick or died of Covid to count. And many of them were very fine people, I am sure, loved by many. But they picked an emotional or faith based response instead of a scientific one and paid the ultimate price. Use your head, god gave it to you for a reason.
One of the things that makes America so great is that you are not forced to think and believe as I do and I don't have to believe like you do. The slippery slope occurs when your or my bad choices or beliefs endanger the public at large. Wear the stupid mask, especially if you are not vaccinated.