The Blaze Covers FFRF’s Stoning Event


The Freedom From Religion Foundation is holding a Stone a Heathen event on Monday to call attention to International Blasphemy Rights Day and raise money for the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society’s Light the Night project. It’s a clever fundraiser first done at the University of South Carolina where people can buy water balloons and “stone” an atheist, with the money going to charity. Billy Hallowell of Glenn Beck’s The Blaze tries to understand the event.

The event is clearly a play on the horrific stoning deaths that often unfold in Islamic countries. But a release from the Freedom From Religion Foundation claims that posters at the campus event will also invoke Judeo-Christian scripture, featuring signs with “biblical quotes calling for the stoning of atheists and blasphemers.”

Obviously, this is an effort to rile people up and to potentially drum up interest in the undertaking.

These verses that will be displayed, as presented on the atheist organization’s website, are as follows:

* “And everyone who would not seek the Lord, the God of Israel, was to be put to death, whether small or great, whether man or woman.” – 2 Chronicles 15:13
* “You shall stone him to death with stones, because he sought to draw you away from the Lord your God, who brought you out of the land of Egypt, out of the house of slavery.” – Deuteronomy 13:10
* “Anyone who blasphemes the name of the LORD is to be put to death.” – Leviticus 24:16

These proof texts, of course, were never intended to be Biblical mandates to modern-day Christians and are not put into proper context in their use by the foundation.

First of all, those stoning deaths that often take place in Muslim countries are also largely based on those same texts. Muslims believe that the Torah, the first five books of the Christian Bible, are the word of God too. And they follow them, with all the barbarism they contain. They don’t just get their barbarism from the Quran, they get it from the Old Testament of the Bible as well and, just like Christians, they believe those commands to have come from the same God that they worship.

And Hallowell is a bit too cavalier in his statement that “of course” they were “never intended” to apply today and are “not put into proper context.” There are lots of Christians — theonomists, Reconstructionists, some other types of dominionists — who very firmly believe that the Mosaic law still applies. And I’m not talking just about fringe figures, I’m talking about people associated with causes that Glenn Beck routinely helps promote. Gary North, for example, is a Reconstructionist who advocates bringing back stoning and the entire Old Testament law. He’s the curriculum director for Ron Paul’s new project that Beck has helped promote.

Despite being an event that will likely spark controversy and ire among some (particularly because the use of Judeo-Christian scripture), the hope is that the money raised can be donated by atheists to the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society.

No, that isn’t “the hope.” That’s what is going to happen. This is really a bizarre way to word this, as though it was somehow suspect that they were really going to give the money to charity or something. But the real fun is in the comment section, as usual. One of the very first comments, by “RetiredUSMC”:

I’ll bring my own balloons filled with goat urine.

Yeah, that’s just what Jesus would do.

Comments

  1. says

    Nice idea, but very risky: it won’t take much to put a deranged Christianist over the edge and have him decide that bullets are a modern substitute for stones.

    And don’t just point at Christianists, either: it is a foundational belief of the Protestant movement that the Bible is the literal, inerrant and eternal Word of God. While some modern Protestant denominations have rejected this dogma, it remains a part of the official teachings of Calvin, Knox, Luther and most other prominent leaders of the Reformation.

  2. says

    “I’ll bring my own balloons filled with goat urine.”

    It would almost be worth it just to see him “milking” the boygoats to get that pee. I wonder if he’s related to Neal Horsley.

    I found this while looking for Mr. “Mule fucker”:

    http://dbpedia.org/page/Neal_Horsley

    turns out the “db” is not short for “douche bag”, too bad

  3. architeuthis says

    Hate to nitpick, but “Muslims believe that the Torah, the first five books of the Christian Bible,” it’s not the Torah, but the Pentateuch that refers to the first 5 books in the Bible.

    I live in NC, SC is a pretty short drive… i may just have to support this event :)

  4. Michael Heath says

    Wingnut

    I’ll bring my own balloons filled with goat urine.

    Ed responds

    Yeah, that’s just what Jesus would do.

    Mighty liberal of the wingnut given Jesus plans eternal torment for those who don’t submit.

  5. iangould says

    “First of all, those stoning deaths that often take place in Muslim countries …”

    Define “often’,

  6. Hercules Grytpype-Thynne says

    Hate to nitpick your nitpick, architeuthis, but the word Torah is often used to refer to the Pentateuch, as for example here, so Ed committed no error.

  7. says

    @5:

    Well, one is WAY TOO MANY!!

    Contrast whatever the figure is with the numbers for accidental shootings in the U.S. and you will see that them mooslims just don’t value life the way WE do!!!

  8. Chiroptera says

    These proof texts, of course, were never intended to be Biblical mandates to modern-day Christians….

    Then why are they still in the Christian canon? Why are they still quoted by modern-day fundamentalists as if they were intended to be mandates?

    Good heavens, it’s as if these clowns don’t even understand their own mythology!

  9. zero6ix says

    It would have been a-ok if it were just mocking muslims. But then they had to go ahead and throw jews and christians under the same bus, and that’s just not fair!

  10. raven says

    These proof texts, of course, were never intended to be Biblical mandates to modern-day Christians and are not put into proper context in their use by the foundation.

    This is just a claim without proof and a lie.

    And it is also cherry picking. How does he or anyone know which mandates of the OT apply to modern xians and which don’t. They just make it all up. I’m sure this same guy would quote Levitcus on stoning gays to death without a second thought.

    The bible is a giant Rorschach Inkblot that says whatever you want it to say.

    are not put into proper context in their use by the foundation.

    Outright lie. If you actually look at their contexts, they still say the same thing and they are still good examples of barbaric atrocities. And are part of the Xian USA plans of the Dominionists like Rushdoony.

    What keeps some fundie xians (and Mormons) from stoning to death most of the US population are a few obstacles. Notably the police, laws, DA’s, courts, and prisons, backed up by the US armed forces. amazingly enough, it is illegal in the USA for xians to stone to death nonvirgin brides, heretics, atheists, blasphemers, disobedient children, adulterers, and gay people.

  11. Artor says

    XMNR, stoning in this country doesn’t carry the recent historical baggage that lynching does. In practice, they have much the same results, but in essence, they are very different.

  12. Pierce R. Butler says

    … The Blaze tries to understand reframe the event.

    Ftfy.

    I very rarely visit the site in question, but doubt whether “understanding” exists in their mission statement at all.

  13. lofgren says

    I think if the NAACP staged a mock lynching to call attention the barbaric actions of white supremacists, that would be acceptable. I doubt anybody would find it funny, though.

    That said, I can’t say I’m entirely comfortable with the idea. Still, it does get the message across effectively. It’s easy to take the right to blaspheme for granted. So easy that we can make a joke out of people being killed for it. But all you have to do is think about the very real people who are really suffering for that right all around the world, and it becomes darkly serious. I just can’t help feeling that it’s a little like having an event where everybody dresses up as hobo clowns in order to call attention to the problem of homelessness. Sure, it gets you thinking about all the suffering out there, but only because you’re thinking about how privileged and insensitive the event organizers (and yourself) are.

    I do find it odd that the money is going to leukemia research. There are secular organizations and individuals in India, Africa, and the Middle East who could use this money to pay for their legal fees, physical protection, and public awareness efforts. Not that leukemia isn’t a good cause, obviously, it just seems like given the nature of the event it would be appropriate to use the money to do something productive about the very problem that the event is calling attention to.

  14. Abby Normal says

    Not that leukemia isn’t a good cause, obviously, it just seems like given the nature of the event it would be appropriate to use the money to do something productive about the very problem that the event is calling attention to.

    Moistening two birds with one “stone.”

  15. exdrone says

    These proof texts, of course, were never intended to be Biblical mandates to modern-day Christians and are not put into proper context in their use by the foundation.

    Because, of course, for the centuries over which this law applied, it was entirely right and proper to stone people to death for blasphemy. Back then, blasphemers were more percussion-worthy.

  16. Nomad says

    I can’t get over the goat urine thing. I picture this former marine squatting down by the business end of a goat, filling up a water balloon with the aforementioned liquid, muttering to himself about how he’ll show those atheists what they get for raising money for charity, and… I don’t know what else to say. Can we just shoot the dead corpse of Jesus and call this experiment in religion over? Because Christianity is just too ridiculous.

  17. lofgren says

    I AM GOING TO SQUAT IN THE MUD COLLECTING GOAT URINE FOR HOURS, FUNNEL IT INTO BALLOONS, PUT THE BALLOONS IN MY CAR, DRIVE ACROSS TOWN, AND THROW THE BALLOONS AT PEOPLE WHO ARE ALREADY COVERED IN WATER AND PROBABLY 30 SECONDS FROM TAKING A SHOWER ANYWAY. THAT’LL SHOW THOSE ATHEISTS WHO THE REAL MORON IS!

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