Saturday, April 7, 2012

Render to Caesar, Extraordinarily

Render to Caesar, Extraordinarily by Ray McGovern

As always, Mr. McGovern is very much worth reading. He ends with ...

Granted, now that drones have come into their own, it is much easier to kill folks rather than to capture and "render" them — like Jesus was rendered to the Romans by the corrupt religious authorities.

Good Friday is a day for pondering such things. While I believe what happened to Jesus gives those of us of Judeo-Christian heritage an additional, highly poignant reason to do so, my atheist friends have warned me against attitudes boarding on snobbery.

One said, "You don’t have to be a Christian, Ray, to know instinctively that human beings simply must not torture other human beings." He is right, of course.

And my friend’s caution reminded me of one of my favorite quotes from Kurt Vonnegut who, at one point named himself Honorary President of the American Humanist Association:

"How do humanists feel about Jesus? I say of Jesus, as all humanists do, ‘If what he said is good, and so much of it is absolutely beautiful, what does it matter if he was God or not?’

"But if Christ hadn’t delivered the Sermon on the Mount, with its message of mercy and pity, I wouldn’t want to be a human being.

"I’d just as soon be a rattlesnake."

Are you human? Or, are you a rattlesnake? Then again, I might be insulting rattlesnakes. I don't think I've ever heard of rattlesnakes torturing other rattlesnakes. Maybe the question should be are us monkeys capable of being as good as rattlesnakes.

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