Thursday, January 14, 2010

Pat Robertson Does Not Speak For Me

It is like clockwork now. If there is a world calamity, people like Robertson or Falwell will be blaming some group they do not like or are afraid of -- whether it is homosexuals getting blamed for 9/11 or now Robertson implying that Haiti made a pact with the devil 200 years ago when the slaves fought for their freedom from the French. Robertson, like many in the right wing, uses the muscle of religious symbology to inspire hatred and blame. It is nasty work he does.

Stand up. Blog out about it. Join me in saying on your blog:

Pat Robertson does not speak for me.

Send him email at his website : Let him know that your faith would not allow such heresy, such racial scapegoating.

Here is the latest PR release from his site:
Statement Regarding Pat Robertson's Comments on Haiti – VIRGINIA BEACH, Va., January 13, 2010 --On today’s The 700 Club, during a segment about the devastation, suffering and humanitarian effort that is needed in Haiti, Dr. Robertson also spoke about Haiti’s history. His comments were based on the widely-discussed 1791 slave rebellion led by Boukman Dutty at Bois Caiman, where the slaves allegedly made a famous pact with the devil in exchange for victory over the French. This history, combined with the horrible state of the country, has led countless scholars and religious figures over the centuries to believe the country is cursed. Dr. Robertson never stated that the earthquake was God’s wrath. If you watch the entire video segment, Dr. Robertson’s compassion for the people of Haiti is clear. He called for prayer for them. His humanitarian arm has been working to help thousands of people in Haiti over the last year, and they are currently launching a major relief and recovery effort to help the victims of this disaster. They have sent a shipment of millions of dollars worth of medications that is now in Haiti, and their disaster team leaders are expected to arrive tomorrow and begin operations to ease the suffering.

Chris Roslan
Spokesman for CBN

Countless scholars believe this? On what planet?? And help me unertand - the PR guy says Robertson was not saying this was God's wrath -- just that Haiti was cursed. Huh?

Robertson must blame that which he does not understand. But he dishonorably assumes he speaks for God or for Christianity.

Well, he does not.

If anyone is interested in Haitian history, here is a bit of it explaining teh time period Robertson mentioned in slight detail.
Here is what Wikipedia says about Boukman Dutty:
Bois Caïman (Haitian Creole: Bwa Kayiman) is the site of the Vodou ceremony presided over by Dutty Boukman on August 14, 1791. The purpose of the ritual was to attempt to expel the French occupation, which were using the Haitians as slave labor.[1]

According to the official "History of Haiti and the Haitian Revloution"[2], in 1791 the following events occurred:

A man named Boukman, another houngan, organized on August 14, 1791, a meeting with the slaves in the mountains of the North. This meeting took the form of a Voodoo ceremony in the Bois Caiman in the northern mountains of the island. It was raining and the sky was raging with clouds; the slaves then started confessing their resentment of their condition. A woman started dancing languorously in the crowd, taken by the spirits of the loas. With a knife in her hand, she cut the throat of a pig and distributed the blood to all the participants of the meeting who swore to kill all the whites on the island. On August 22, 1791, the blacks of the North entered into a rebellion, killing all the whites they met and setting the plantations of the colony on fire. However, the French quickly captured the leader of the slaves, Boukman, and beheaded him, bringing the rebellion under control.

It is widely accepted as the starting point for the Haitian Revolution.

And who were these loas that are mentioned? Are they "the devil" that Robertson refers to? Here is Wikipedia again:
The Loa (also Lwa or L'wha) are the spirits of the Voodoo religion practiced in Haiti, and other parts of the world. They are also referred to as Mystères and the Invisibles. They are somewhat akin to saints or angels in Christianity in that they are intermediaries between Bondye (Bon Dieu, or good god)—the Creator, who is distant from the world—and humanity. Unlike saints or angels however, they are not simply prayed to, they are served. They are each distinct beings with their own personal likes and dislikes, distinct sacred rhythms, songs, dances, ritual symbols, and special modes of service. Contrary to popular belief, the loa are not deities in and of themselves; they are intermediaries for a distant Bondye.As a way to keep their European masters from interfering, and to appease the authorities who prevented them from practising their own religions, the African slaves in Haiti syncretised the Loa with the Roman Catholic saints - so Vodoun altars will frequently have images of Catholic figures displayed. For example, Papa Legba is alternately St. Peter or St. Lazarus, Ayizan is Saint Clare, and so on. Syncretism also works the other way in Haitian Vodou and many Catholic saints have become Loa in their own right, most notably St. Philomena, St. Michael the Archangel, St. Jude, and St. John the Baptist.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

not to put too fine a point on it, but isn't syncretism (the merging or meshing of two disparate faith practices into one new practice) a general no-no? syncretism is what created the golden calf issue when Moses came down from the mountain. turned out rather a downer (literally) for the followers of the calf. pat robertson does not speak for me, either. stupid is too nice a word for it (thank you, white house, for choosing that word, tho) but mixing the catholic faith with a belief in vengeful or outright demonic spirits is never a good idea, either.
what happened in Haiti was not, however, an act of an omniscient and loving God, it was a natural calamity and God would have us pray for - if not go and help - the Haitians in this time of crisis and pain.

3:35 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

People do not generally want to believe that a "loving God" would allow something like this to happen. please read the old testament accounts of His handling of "his children, the Israelies", when they lived in disobedience to Him. God never changes, He is the same today and always. America needs to fear God or the same could happen to us.

11:42 PM  
Blogger Mata H said...

I think your estimate of God's love is very small. Natural disasters, also, do not have to be seen as God's punishment. Why do people waste time trying to find someone to blame for the tragic events of the world, when there is help to be given. Giving help IS God's will.

2:39 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

God is in control of natual uexplainable diseasters. He alone has the power to prevent them if He chooses.

6:22 PM  
Blogger Mata H said...

First, I do not like anonymous posts. Second, I do not believe that God intends to inflict pain on innocent people. Ever. Future anonymous posts that do not link to a home blog will be deleted.

6:48 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

6:18 AM  

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