Logo

Theological Editions - Indepth daily religious news, views, reviews & key theological resources
Features

In-depth religious news, views, reviews, features & resources for the thinking person
 

Resources

Bible
Sermons

Liturgy & Prayer

News & Magazines

Journals

Texts & Resources

Home

Protest mild compared with Jesus' vandalism
by Graeme J. Davidson,
7 Feb 2009

Jesus of Nazareth was hardly peaceful. Who was it that vandalised the Jerusalem Temple by overturning the money exchange tables and assaulting people and animals with a whip?

... Operation Cast Lead, Israel’s 22-day military venture into Gaza to end rocket attacks, had plenty of fallout here, especially when demonstrators took to our streets.
Many got upset when protesters’ kids wore red-stained bandages symbolising Gaza’s civilian casualties. They ignored how we regularly use our kids to highlight the suffering of other youngsters such as child victims of accidents, cancer and abuse.
... Porirua priest Father Gerard Burns’ splattering red paint with a drop of his blood over a monument to assassinated former Israeli Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin caused the greatest fuss. He and fellow supporters of Palestinian rights wanted our government to condemn Israel.
... The Kiwi Friends of Israel called on Father Burns to apologise and Wellington Catholic Archbishop John Dew quickly obliged in a very paternalistic way: “I offer an apology for Father Burns' actions and make this apology to all those who were offended at the desecration of the Rabin monument".
... In a letter to the editor of this paper (19 January), Paul Clarke asked: “Why can’t Father Burns learn that if he wants peace in the world, he would also be best serving his god by saying a mass in public to honour the prince of peace?”
... The prince of peace? Despite the title referring to a future messiah in the Old Testament Book of Isaiah, it wasn’t until 100 years after his crucifixion that writers call Jesus the Prince of Peace. The Roman Emperor Augustus (27 BC- AD 14) was hailed Prince of Peace well before that.
... Jesus of Nazareth was hardly peaceful. Who was it that vandalised the Jerusalem Temple by overturning the money exchange tables and assaulting people and animals with a whip? Is Archbishop Dew going to apologise for this outburst too? And if Jesus’ righteous indignation was justified, why not Father Burns’ far milder protest at Israel’s disproportionate military response that shattered so many civilian lives?
... Anyway, how naïve of the Wellington City Council to approve the divisive public monument to Yitzhak Rabin, sited near its Civic Square in 2000, and then to advertise it as part of a city “Peace Walk”. Rabin led a country with highly contentious security practices. He also shared the 1994 Nobel Peace Prize with Yasser Arafat and Shimon Peres, all of whom had been leaders in paramilitary organisations accused of terrorism. The monument displays the logo of the Jewish National Fund (JNF), a Zionist organisation dedicated to obtaining land for Jewish settlement. Palestinians complain that the Oslo Accords, for which Rabin got his peace prize, were used to expand Israeli settlements on Palestinian land, especially on the West Bank.
... When the Mevlana Cafe in Invercargill refused to serve two Israeli women in protest against Israel’s incursion into Gaza, one of them complained to the Human Rights Commission. Race Relations Commissioner Joris De Bres reminded us, "It's unlawful to discriminate in the provision of goods and services on the grounds of either national or ethnic origin or political opinion". That also means a Jewish café owner can’t refuse to serve members of a neo Nazi party because of their politics.
... But we do have Maori parliamentary seats based on race and ethnic origin. I wrote to the Human Rights Commission about this blatant violation of our Human Rights Act, and was told that when the Act conflicted with an existing law, the “only remedy that the Human Rights Review Tribunal or a court can grant is a Declaration of Inconsistency”. Government legislation can defy the Human Rights Act, not café owners.
... It wasn’t Wellington City Council that complained to police over the desecration of the Yitzhak Rabin monument, but David Zwartz, Honorary Consul of Israel, and Father Burns now faces wilful damage charges. Mr Zwartz has the right to lay a complaint and leave the verdict to the court. But it is a heavy-handed approach, which is symbolic of Israel’s harsh and disproportionate reactions in Gaza. What was wrong with Mr Zwartz inviting Father Burns for a spirited discussion over a cup of tea?

 


 

 

See also
Should we intervene to prevent suicide? >> more
Divorce risk indicator >> more
When you feel like you're sharing a bed with a stranger >> more
Surving the breakup >> more
Suicide terrorism as a desperate weapon of liberation >> more
Ned Flanders — popular face of Christianity >> more
Seven common myths about religion >> more
Moral divide between church leaders and laity >> more
Unholy silence over MPs hypocrisy and greed >> more
Anglican schism over gay clergy inevitable >> more
My agonising path to enlightenment >> more
More than ever, it's a time for generosity >> more
National's ethics smell of political expediency >> more
Pope's trip to Holy Land fraught with potholes >> more
The resurrection may have been superfluous >> more
Rasputin — from sinner and seducer to saint? >> more
Religious delusions and the Jerusalem syndrome >> more
Protest mild compared with Jesus' vandalism >> more
What Castro and Obama have in common >> more
Holidays can revive romance or widen cracks between couples >> more
Dubious scholarship reinterprets Jesus to fit secular creed >> more
Furore over gay marriage echoes the conflict over slavery >> more
If only politics were as certain as dear old granny >> more
You've got to have faith to win the White House >> more
The problem of evil >> more
TV Programmers let lose Roman circus >> more
Prostitutes welcome in the kingdom of God but not in Dannevirke >> more
Church too busy navel-gazing to take lead over crime >> more
Will the Anglican Church split over gay clergy and same-sex unions? >> more
Faith in secular western society >> more
The Vatican's pelvic theology >> more
Abuse and the Beijing Olympics >> more
Would the real Jesus stand up? >> more
Hypersensitivity perverts ethics >> more
God and presidential hopefuls >> more
A three-ghetto church based on politics >> more
Good and bad intentions >> more
Deliver us from exorcists who harm >> more
How effective is prayer? >> more
Masters of non-violence, resistance and kung fu >> more
Was Mother Teresa living a lie? >> more
Double standards over child sex abuse >> more
Soppy inspirational and pseudo-spiritual emails >> more
Caring organisations and pyschopathic bosses >> more
The new anti-religious evangelists >> more
Call for religious education could backfire >> more
Blessing creatures great & small — but what about blowflies? >> more
Does God exist only in the brain? >> more
The Prudes who crucify >> more
tomb raiders and the bones of Jesus and his family? >> more
Jesus loves Osama >> more
Is God more like a matchbox or a number? >> more
Confessions of a failed axe murderer >> more
Bacchanalian festivals and sentimentality >> more
Manners: insignificant social customs? >> more
The 109 fighting boys >> more
Trying to exhume the historical Jesus >> more
Is global violence really on the increase? >> more
Polygamy, circumcision, atheist journalists and religious diversity >> more
The Christian Right stands by Israel out of a misguided theology  >> more 
What a rat taught me >> more
The Church is becoming a retirement hobby for granny clergy >> more 
Is there an anti-Christian conspiracy in Hollywood? >> more
Have church schools sold out on Christianity? >> more
How good a Christian is President George W Bush? >> more

Hitler, Lawyers, Politicians SUV owners and life after death >> more

Were the Christian hostages really idiots for peace? >> more
Infidelity: in hot pursuit of a better organsm or better intimacy? >> more
Skulduggery and controversy over discovery of religious texts >> more
The cartoons aren't about secular freedoms versus intolerance >> more

Christian Zionists hinder justice and peace in the Middle East >> more

Should making more money be your New Year's resolution? >> more
My early life as a black sheep in a nativity scene >> more
Different types of suicide bomber: what makes them tick >> more
Cheating a short cut to sucess in winner-take-all society >> more
Life after death: Is it logically possible? >> more
Is it Anglican to practise apartheid? >> more
Da Vinci Code unlocks controversy>> more
Bishops' statement: pompous, pious, out of touch and verging on the heretical >> more 
Church leaders unconvincing over prostitution law reform >> more
Divorce risk factors >> more
How global are we?  A Christian's view of globalisation >> more
Victims of dirty tricks & friendly fire: Machiavellian tactics in the Church militant >> more
A redundant resurrection >> more
War, violence, ethics, religion and hypocrisy >> more
If St Peter was interviewed for ordination today >> more
13 ways to empty a church without really trying >> more
How tolerant is the Museum of Tolerance? >> more
A church comes out and reconciliation divides >> more
Micah's dream — too much to ask? >> more
Has the revised Anglican Church in New Zealand instigated a benign form of religious apartheid? >> more
The case for St Judas Iscariot >> more
Exorcism: the ministry of deliverance >> more

Top