Friday, January 15, 2010

Some Thoughts about Pat Robertson

Yesterday, Haiti was hit with a massive earthquake. It didn’t take long after the earthquake hit the news for televangelist Pat Robertson to say something stupid and insensitive in order to make money. The thing that gets me is that people seem surprised by this. What did you expect from Pat Robertson?

After the 911 attacks, Jerry Falwell and Pat Robertson talked about how the attacks shouldn’t be blamed on the people who actually attacked, but instead the attacks should be blamed on all the people Falwell and Robertson dislike and don’t agree with. Then they used the 911 attacks to raise money for their ministries (and themselves).

When Hurricane Katrina devastated New Orleans, Robertson went on the air to talk about how God made the land “vomit out” in New Orleans because abortion is legal in the United States… and then he started to raise a bunch of money for his ministry.

So now, Robertson says that the people of Haiti made a deal with Satan and that people should give him a bunch of money to help fight Satan. It is easy to chastise Robertson for being an insensitive ass-clown. Everyone is doing it, but the fact is that Robertson isn’t the problem here.
First and foremost, we have to help the people of Haiti. So I recommend that people donate a dollar or more to the secular Doctors Without Borders and/or International Red Cross. That is by far the most important thing you can do.

Second, understand that science and science education could help us to develop technology which could help us better understand and predict earthquakes. So we need to support our scientific community. Fundamentalists like Pat Robertson may think that earthquakes are punishments from God, but the fact is that the devastation in Haiti could have been avoided if the scientific community had more resources available to them to learn more about earthquakes and other acts of nature. Religious superstition is a detriment to our scientific progress. And to Christianity.

Third, we need to stop blaming Pat Robertson. The fact is that he is an easy target. He goes on television and says something stupid and insensitive, but at the end of the day he makes a ton of money saying those things. Robertson can’t wait for the next natural disaster to hit. They are big money makers for him. A large number of Americans agree with Pat and as a result, they donate to his stupid 700 Club. If everyone thought Pat was ridiculous for the stuff he said, then he wouldn’t be making a shit load of money saying it and so he would stop. But the real problem is that a large number of Americans agree with him. How did we let that happen in our modern world?



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