Fire and Brimstone: A Week of Eruptions

It all started on Sunday when ANC President, Jacob Zuma (in the middle of an election campaign) addressed the congregation of the Rhema Church at the invitation of Pastor Ray McCauley. The resulting eruption and fallout in the South African Christian community, lasted for days as recriminations were hurled back and forth. So much for the separation of Church and State. Zuma needed some extra votes and Pastor Ray needed a sympathetic ear to push his delusional beliefs, re: “…concerns Christians have about abortion, same-sex marriage, the inclusion of evolution in the school curriculum and the elimination of prayer in schools.” Political and religious needs superseded the need to honor the ideals of secularism. All I can say is that we should watch how this parasitic relationship develops in future.

While this farce was settling down, Table Mountain erupted in flames, amidst allegations of arson. Meanwhile Pope Benedict, who began a week-long visit to Africa, in Cameroon, caused an international eruption by publicly mouthing a long-held view of the Catholic Church which is unfortunately out of touch with reality. Speaking about HIV/AIDS aboard a plane en-route to Cameroon, he made the remarkably dumb statement that “You can’t resolve it with the distribution of condoms. On the contrary, it increases the problem.”  And if that was not bad enough, the Pope’s visit was preceded by the destruction of informal traders goods and businesses, by the Cameroon government, in an apparent bid to give the city a “face-lift.” Needless to say, the Pope did not make too much of a fuss about this, nor did he say too much about the human rights violations that Cameroon President Paul Biya has been accused off. The Catholic Church has a long history of being more concerned with the “rights” of god and religion, rather than those of humans.

While the Pope settled into his meaningless mission into Africa, across the oceans in Tonga, an undersea volcano was erupting. Meanwhile, across the world, bouts of raucous laughter erupted from rational people who had just heard of a new Darwin exhibition at the Answers in Genesis Creation Museum in Kentucky, depicting “that natural selection – Darwin’s explanation for how species develop new traits over time – can coexist with the creationist assertion that all living things were created by God just a few thousand years ago.”  Further eruptions of laughter followed founder of the Christian ministry AIG, Ken Ham’s assertion, that “We wanted to show people that creationists believe in natural selection.”  Perhaps the large sign “Natural Selection is not Evolution” which greets visitors to the exhibition, should be changed to “The Mental Gymnastics Exhibition.” It surely takes some serious mental contortions to fit the absurdities of creation and intelligent design into the theory of natural selection and evolution.

Yep, there you have it; a collection of natural and unnatural eruptions for this week. And the week is not over yet. Who knows what the religious fraternity have in store for us next…

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