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AFA Approved Comments: Knoxville Church Doing “Satan’s Work”

Jim Burroway

July 28th, 2008

Not anyone can log in and leave a comment on the American Family Association’s OneNewsNow site. Once you submit a comment, it has to be approved by a moderator before it goes public. And what kind of comments earn the AFA’s stamp of approval on their re-post of the AP’s story on the Knoxville church shooting? How about this one:

While this is a tragedy, the article may mislead those who are not familiar with the Unitatian [sic] “non-religion”. Unitarians are not Christians, and like all non-Christians they are doing Satan’s work.” Only a non-Christian would say something like that at a time like this. Thanks for muddying the waters.”

And again, another one, probably by the same author (note the repeated misspelling):

While this is a tragedy, the article may mislead those who are not familiar with the Unitatian [sic] “non-religion”. Unitarians are not Christians, and like all non-Christians they are doing Satan’s work.”

They liked the comment so much they approved it twice.

We’ve lamented the resounding silence on the part of anti-gay religious activists concerning Larry King’s murder. It looks like some quarters have decided not to be so quite this time, now that a gay-friendly church was the target.

Disgusting. Is it any wonder Christians have such a bad name?

Update: As readers point out, it does appear that the first comment reposted above may be a rebuke to the second comment. It takes a very close reading to catch it; OneNewsNow’s formatting makes it all very unclear. OneNewsNow has removed the second comment that we reproduced above, but there’s still another one remaining:

The truth is never hateful or an insult and those who mock the truth are Satan’s stooges. Unitarians are not Christians and anyone who is not of Christ is of Satan. That is truth, not hate or insult.”

Another comment, (the most recent one?) states the obvious:

At a tragic time like this we should be praying for these people, not attacking them. I don’t agree with their beliefs, but to insult them during this time does nothing to further the gospel of Christ. It only serves to give those who hate Christianity a reason to call us hateful.

Well, if it talks like a duck…

See also:
Knoxville Gays On Edge; Local MCC Church Wants To See Letter
Relief Fund Set Up for Knoxville Churches
Thoughts and Prayers for Knoxville Shooting Victims
Knoxville Shooting Witness’s First-Hand Account
Knoxville Shooter Hated “Blacks, Gays, Anyone Different”
AFA Approved Comments: Knoxville Church Doing “Satan’s Work”
Knoxville Shooter Hated “Liberals,” Gays
Just Concluded: Knoxville Press Conference
Knoxville Shooter’s Manifesto Found
Gunman Opens Fire On Gay-Friendly Church, Two Killed



Matt Algren
July 28th, 2008 | LINK

I read it as the first comment you posted was quoting and chastising the second. This morning the second was up first.

Still and all, the fact that it got through in the first place is pretty shameful. And the guy doing the chastising manages to malign non-Christians in the process.

July 28th, 2008 | LINK

I think Matt is right. It can be hard to tell with their near complete lack of formatting, but my first reaction to the comment you posted first was that it was actually chastising the one farther down.

It would appear that the comments are listed newest first, not oldest first as is more common.

July 28th, 2008 | LINK

Matt’s exactly right. It’s meant as a blockquote response.

Meanwhile, the UUs are in fact the first to admit that they are not Christians. (That of course does not excuse the Evangelicals’ attitude over this tragedy.)

I also wonder whether the fact that Randy Pausch was a UU and his death so much in the news these past few days had anything to do with the gunman’s mindset.

July 28th, 2008 | LINK

Apparently reading AFA’s right wing “news” site gets you so riled up that even YOU aren’t immune to the same type of misspellings you made fun of in the article…

Jim Burroway
July 28th, 2008 | LINK

I wasn’t trying to make fun; I was pointing to evidence of authorship. And in fairness, I threw the [sic] in there to distinguish OneNewsNow’s misspellings from my own. ;-)

But yes, they do get me riled. And that, coupled with a balky internet connection that the online spell-checker isn’t playing nice with today, well, you saw the results (briefly).

Ben in Oakland
July 28th, 2008 | LINK

I’m a really good christian myself.

I don’t hate right-wing christians, i just disagree with their lifestyle.

In other words, I don’t dislike them, I dislike what they do.

especially when they feel it so necessatry to spew their anti-every-one-who-does-not-think-exactly-like-them bile in the face of a tragedy like this one.

Regan DuCasse
July 28th, 2008 | LINK

Well, I knew it was coming….those in the UUC aren’t ‘real’ Christians.

Some people, really make me want to chuck mucky.

Timothy Kincaid
July 28th, 2008 | LINK

To be fair… it’s not insulting to say that those in the Unitarian Universalist Association aren’t Christian. They don’t claim to be.

Unitarian Universalism is a liberal religion with Jewish-Christian roots. It has no creed. It affirms the worth of human beings, advocates freedom of belief and the search for advancing truth, and tries to provide a warm, open, supportive community for people who believe that ethical living is the supreme witness of religion.

Unitarian Universalists can be Christian, Humanist, Pagan, Buddhist, Jewish, atheist, and more. A portion of Unitarian Universalists today identify as Christians, but even some Unitarian Universalists who do not identify primarily as Christians find inspiration in Christian ideas. Because of the freedom within our faith, there are many differing views regarding the role of Christianity in our religious community.

Sportin' Life
July 28th, 2008 | LINK

The comment unfortunately reflects exactly what (most?) evangelical christians profess to believe, officially. Of course the sentiment is horrible, and it offends morality and decency, but it shouldn’t be a surprise to anyone to hear it expressed.

The circumstances of yesterday make it more jarring on this particular day, but isn’t it odious at any time?

July 28th, 2008 | LINK

I’m not sure what’s worse, the people trying to pluck the violin strings of “anti-Christian persecution” over this church shooting (when the shooter’s motivation was clearly otherwise) or the hate-mongers claiming it doesn’t matter that people died because it “wasn’t a Christian church”. Either way I’m left shaking my head and feeling horrible for the victims.

July 28th, 2008 | LINK

I was the one who commented: “Only a non-Christian would say something like that at a time like this. Thanks for muddying the waters.”

on Only I originally had the word Christian in “Christian” snear quotes.

August 1st, 2008 | LINK

Most of us don’t fully understand the beliefs of Jehovah’s Witnesses or Mormons but since they are conservative sects, the prevailing attitude is “live and let live.”

Not so with a liberal group like the UUs. They are considered a “threat” by conservatives, charcterized as anti-American, blamed for America’s ills, and are targeted for demonization in the Fox News circuit.

Right wing hatespeech definitely flows toward the left, not the right.

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