Sunday, May 28, 2006

Our religion is better than your religion, says Stock

Our good friend Stockwell Day took a break from keeping the public safe last week to speak to a prayer breakfast in Edmonton, and over the sticky buns (Danishes, perhaps?) the subject of the Da Vinci Code came up.

It seems from the news account that most of his comments made a lot of sense. He basically said the book is good because it is raising people’s interest in religion and the church, and that Christianity is up to the challenge of a little critical questioning. I agree. People are talking about religion and examining their own faith, that’s a good thing and it’s an opportunity for the church to enter into a dialogue with the public.

Now let’s move on down to the end of the story, to what we folks in journalism like to call the kicker. Here Stock seems to go over the line, and I think it’s readily obvious why.

In an apparent reference to the violence sparked by recently published cartoons of the prophet Mohammed, Day noted Christians have been restrained in their opposition to Brown's debunking of Christianity.

"I haven't seen the clerics order that the movie studios be destroyed or that the newspaper places be burned down," he said. "Isn't it great that the message of Jesus Christ is one of love and tolerance?"

Sigh. And you were doing so well, Stockwell!

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Robert said...

I hate hearing stuff like this, because it reminds me that he is part of the government, and who the government is. *sigh*

Zac said...

I knew he'd open up eventually. What a jackass Stock Day is.

It's sad that he is now in government, but I'm glad that the CPC are showing thier true stripes now.

jack in victoria said...

Hmm? Based on your quotation, it sounds like an entirely reasonable statement to me.

A religion isn't a book or a building, it's a community of people, and people must be held accountable for their behaviour. It is an incontrovertable fact that the world Christian community is, at the present time, more tolerant of criticism (or, as the case may be, cheap mockery) and less prone to violence than the world Islamic community.

Obviously, that hasn't always been the case, but it is now. Christians can and should take full credit for putting the Christianity of inquisitions, crusades, et al, firmly in the past. On the other hand, a religion wherein principal clerics with mass followings preach that women who cheat on their husband should be stoned to death deserves, as a community, full criticism for failing to marginalize such voices.

Dan McKenzie said...

Someone should remind Stockwell that Public Safety is in his job title.

And Jack I believe your description of Islam is very biased.

Saskboy said...

Jack, Christians in modern times are less violent, but every bit as defensive as Muslims when they feel attacked. A radio personality was calling for mass firings over a freedom of the press issue at The Sheaf when an offensive cartoon depicting Jesus was published. The same personality had previously praised The Western Standard's publication of the offensive Muhamed cartoons.

Prairie Kid said...

So because Stockwell Day brought up the name of Jesus Christ he is a Jackass. Now everyone who believes in the bible and isn't Liberal is a Jackass. Is that what you're saying?

A BCer in Toronto said...

Jack, putting aside the question of why in the name of you know who is Stock even broaching this subject at all (you're a cabinet minister now Stock) let's examine the quote, and just how reasonable it is.

"I haven't seen the clerics order that the movie studios be destroyed or that the newspaper places be burned down," he said. "Isn't it great that the message of Jesus Christ is one of love and tolerance?"

He seems to me to be implying, if not saying, that the message of the Prophet is not one of love in tolerance. It is one of love and tolerance, just as is the message of Jesus.

Throughout history people have perverted both of these messages for various reasons to incite violence and hatred, but that doesn't reflect on the bulk of the members of either group, nor does it change the meaning of their core messages.

foottothefire said...

It took a bit of re-reading but .... I think Praire Kid may be on to something.
As for Stock .... any man willing to march around a broken down bar in a praire town calling on God to bring the place down ... is a fearless man with the possibilities of connections. He should be in charge of something.

and Jack in victoria .... we may ALMOST be rid of those favoring inquisitions, crusades etc. but don't count the backbenches of the Conservative party out yet. I for one have faith they will rise like fungus to rid the world of .......
whatever crusaders need to rid the world of.

berlynn said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
berlynn said...

So, might Stock's comment be an example of religious bigotry?

The Rat said...

Yeah, how dare Stock point out the blindingly obvious lest it offend the people who WOULD call a fatwah against him.

Scotian said...

I wonder if those that believe it is an incontrovertible fact that Christianity is less prone to violent abuse than Islam have ever heard of the Ugandan army of light. This group uses Christianity as it's template and those that do not believe in their version of it meet machetes and similar fates. Children are recruited in the name of God to kill other children as well as adults. So this idea that it is an incontrovertible fact is wishful thinking.

All religions are open to this kind of abuse and Christianity is no different even in today's world. The main difference is that the Islamic variety gets far more press in the western media than does the Christian variety, especially the ones in Africa. Yet again we see ignorance being passed off as incontrovertible fact. Got to love the truthiness in this, doesn't one.

As for Stockwell Day making these comments, he certainly was attempting to validate his religious belief/faith over that of others especially Islam. Not exactly something a Minister of the Crown in this country should be doing, not that this stopped Stockwell Day as an Albertan Minister so I suppose there is no surprise at his doing such at the federal level. Yet more examples of being willing to believe the worst of those that do not share his faith while believing the best of those that do.

Good catch BCer.

Carmi said...

Maybe I'm missing something, but politicians seem to be universally incapable of shutting themselves up before they place their feet firmly down their throats. It seems to be genetically patterned behavior, and you'd think they'd learn their lesson by now.

Then again, if they had the capacity to learn, they wouldn't be in politics.