Giving God a Bad Name

Sen. Hank Erwin (R-Montevallo) has opened his mouth in public again, and once again it was a mistake. He says God sent Hurricane Katrina and other storms that have caused devastation on the Gulf Coast as punishment for sin. According to Hank, “New Orleans and the Mississippi Gulf Coast have always been known for gambling, sin and wickedness.” Notice that he doesn’t mention Alabama in his statement. So I guess that means that we don’t sin here. And of course he doesn’t mention Texas; there couldn’t possibly be any sin in W’s home state.

I don’t suppose it ever occurred to Hank that the coast was devastated by the hurricanes because it is THE COAST and therefore gets hit first when a hurricane makes landfall.

He goes on to say, “Sadly, innocents suffered along with the guilty. Sin always brings suffering to good people as well as the bad.” So God is okay with collateral damage as long as the primary objective is achieved? That certainly fits the philosophy of Hank’s spiritual brothers, who joined him in celebrating the death and destruction on the coast: the al-Quaida in Iraq group, Nation of Islam leader Louis Farrakhan, Pat Robertson, and a few rabbis who suggested that the storms were retribution for US support of Israel’s withdrawal from Gaza.

Erwin is a one-note fanatic who spends his time in the Senate trying to protect us from the evil homos who, at least according to Hank (and other nuts like book-banning Rep. Gerald Allen), are trying to take over the world. What are the chances he’ll also be a one-term wonder in the Alabama Senate? Not great, I’m afraid. People like Hank can always appeal to the smug wing of the Christian faith, those who sit safely in their houses, secure in the knowledge that they have a direct line to God and the rest of us will be roasting soon.

I don’t claim a direct line to God, but I’d be willing to bet (ooh, gambling!) that the God who numbers the hairs on our heads and calls us by name is grieving right beside the people of the Gulf Coast. I believe God is very busy right now — comforting the bereaved and the homeless, strengthening the relief workers, and inspiring people of faith and good will everywhere to help however they are able. I guess that’s the only reason She hasn’t reached out to smite Hank Erwin upside the head for being such an idiot.

7 Responses to “Giving God a Bad Name”

  1. Herb Williamson says:

    Bishop Willimon put it straight with his comments in the B’ham news today. He was not like the professor at Samford who was afraid to mention Erwin by name and sorta catered to Erwin’s philosophy by giving explanations about how different believers perceive God causing things to happen. Even he left out the most important and solid theological point which is that God does not cause tragedies but is always there to turn tragedy into good with the help of God’s people. Erwin makes God a worse monster than the people he says his god is punishing.

  2. Paul says:

    Amen, Br. Herb! I was so very proud to be a United Methodist this morning after reading Dr. Willimon’s comments. And by the way, we probably do owe some thanks to Senator Erwin. The question of who the biggest and dumbest jerk in Alabama might be has been answered.

  3. Zach says:

    Hank Erwin makes God sound like a creature from a bad B-movie. I mourn for our state and the idiots we produce.

  4. Bill says:

    Amen and Amen Herb! God is a God who loves His children more than we can fathom.

    So according to the Gospel of Saint Hank, when one of them does something bad, He kills them. Oh and by the way, He kills some more of them who were well behaved.

    Hank, your God is false! I prefer the God of the Scripture who created me and loves me and the rest of His children. Take your blasphemous, made up God and go crawl under a very small rock. You will both fit there. Along with Roy Moore who is the only contender with you for the title of biggest and dumbest jerk in the state.

  5. John says:

    What do you think of this as a joke to turn into Leno tonight?

    “A state senator from Alabama said Wednesday that God caused the devastation brought on by Hurricane Katrina and Hurricane Rita as punishment for gambling, sin, and wickedness.”

    “I guess that means God is also responsible for this senator’s stupidity.”

  6. Kathy says:

    I think God is getting tired of taking the blame for hurricanes and for people like Hank Erwin ;)

  7. I reckon it’s time God calls ole Hank and, of course, I’ll post the call tomorrow much as all the other calls I’ve listened in on recently.

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