Jesus And The OWS Movement

Ken AshfordGodstuff, Occupy Wall Street2 Comments

I've read some pretty bone-headed criticisms of the Occupy Wall Street movement, and laughed them off as mostly misinformed.  But nothing — NOTHING — comes close to the recent piece by Bryan Fischer, the Director of Issue Analysis as the American Family Association.  This is a glorious example of meathead-ary.

Writing in Rightly Concerned, Fischer argues that the Occupy Wall Street protesters are disobeying “God’s moral law” and are “driven by a dark, bitter, resentful, angry and acquisitive greed.” “Jesus took a whip to the thieves and the covetous in his day,” Fischer writes. “If he were to come back and do the same thing today, he just might start in Zuccotti Park.”

Let's have some fun, shall we?

A CNN anchor asked earlier this week whether or  not Jesus would occupy Wall Street. 

That question can be answered with a categorical “No.” 

First, Jesus has no truck with rank, blatant hypocrites. The OWS crowd has now fallen to squabbling over who gets a slice of the $500,000 which has been donated to them, and which, by the way, they put in one of the evil, greedy banks they are out to destroy.

And the OWS crowd is thinking about incorporating! In other words, they’re about to become one of the evil corporations they claim to detest, as the Occupy Portland folks have already done. 

Okay, Bryan.  I'm going to stop you right there before you embarrass yourself more.  Get a pencil and paper and write this down:

The Occupy Wall Street movement isn't opposed to banks or corporations per se.  They don't want to do away with them entirely, or even a little bit.  They simply want them act responsibily and morally — you know, not to be thieves themselves.  They want them to be regulated so that they can't engage in the fraudulent excesses that brought this country down.

As for the $500,000 in donations — what should the OWS crowd do?  Carry it around as cash in plastic bags?

Don't be an idiot.

And they’re royally hacked off at the vagrant homeless types trying to cadge free food from them. They’re going to feed them brown rice gruel this weekend instead of spaghetti bolognese to show them the depths of their compassion for the poor and downtrodden. No more soup for you! 

Source?  No, I didn't think so.

Besides, you're contradicting yourself in the space of a couple sentences.  The OWS people have "royally hacked off" the homeless AND they are giving them free food?  Which is it?

So all of sudden that sharing the wealth business has lost its appeal. They’re tired of people freeloading off of them and taking advantage of them. To which we say, welcome to our world.

The world of Jesus, you mean?  Jesus hated freeloaders too, I suppose.  Kind of confuses me about the fish-into-loaves-of-bread thing, but I guess you can make any douchebag point you want if you selectively use the Bible. 

Now you know why we have lost patience with all of liberalism and the entire welfare system. 

So the OWSers want the greedy, evil corporations to share the wealth with them, but they don’t want to share their wealth with anybody, especially with the poor and needy flooding into their squatters’ camps. I’m sure Jesus would be happy to address the OWS crowd, and he’d probably begin his remarks with the scathing use of the word “hypocrites.” 

Wait, wait, wait.  Are we talking about the same Jesus here?  The Jesus that threw over the tables of the greedy moneychangers in the temple and got medieval on their asses?  The Jesus who said that a rich man has about as much chance of getting into heaven as a camel does getting through the eye of a needle? That Jesus?  Are you telling me that Jesus would be on board with the 1%ers?

Secondly, Jesus has no truck with those whose entire agenda is to flagrantly disobey two of the Ten Commandments of God. 

Really.  The entire agenda.  Funny I didn't see any signs about the Ten Commandments at all.

God said, “Thou shalt not steal,” a commandment Jesus affirmed on numerous occasions. Stealing is wrong, and it doesn’t make it right when government does it under color of law.  

Is stealing right when corporations do it and governments look the other way?  Just curious.

But the OWS crowd wants to use the coercive power of government to take resources from some and involuntarily redistribute it to others. Namely, them. When government confiscates wealth by force from some citizens and transfers that wealth to others, that’s not welfare and it’s not compassion. It is nothing less than legalized plunder. 

Oh, Bryan.  You're soooo close.  The problem is… you have your scorecard upside down.

What happened is that the government bailed out banks and financial institutions.  And the CEOs took that money, and gave themselves huge bonuses, after fucking up not only their businesses but the entire economy.  And where did the government bailout come from?  Us! You!  The OWS crowd!  The Tea Party crowd!

In short, the wealth distribution already happened.  It went from hard-working Americans (involuntarily) on "Main Street" to incompetent Wall Street bigwigs.  And you're right about one thing — tt was nothing less than legalized plunder, Bryan.  

Jesus teaches the redistribution of wealth – as long as the transfer is voluntary.

Uh, no he doesn't.  Where in the Bible does he talk about voluntary weath distribution, bro?  (You're making up things again, Arnold…)

But he is adamantly opposed to the involuntary redistribution of wealth, because that violates the moral law of God and is profoundly wrong.

Wait a second.  If you disobey God's commandments, you go to hell, right?  So when I'm commanded by God to "Love thy neighbor", doesn't that require that I redistribute my wealth?  You know, the whole bit about, "If a man asks you for your shirt, give him your coat as well"?  And if I'm doing so under threat of eternal damnation, am I really doing it "voluntarily"?

Do you really think, Bryan, that Jesus would be in the boardrooms of Goldman Sachs, as opposed to with the Occupiers in body and spirit?

His words to take care of the poor are not addressed to government, they are addressed to us. 

This from the guy who wants the government to put bibles in the schools, and who thinks this is a Christian Nation forged by our forefathers to promote the Judeo-Christian ideals.  Yes…. apparently, the government is supposed to further Christian causes, just not ACT like a Christian.  (Bryan, what were you saying earlier about "hypocrites"?)

But I'll set that aside.  Guess what?  We control the government.  And if there is a popular movement broad and deep enough which mandates that we take care of the poor (which we do anyway, like it or not, through various safety nets like Social Security and Medicare and public housing), then it shall be done.  That's called democracy.

Besides, the OWS people aren't demanding redistribution of wealth.  They're not asking that the executives of Goldman Sachs come down from the Wall Street offices and hand out cash.  They are simply asking that financial institutions be regulated so that they can't pick the pocket of the average working man, and essentially commit fraud.  A fair shake.

And the OWS crowd is animated by a thoroughly ugly disregard for the 10th Commandment as well. God says, “Thou shalt not covet…any thing that is thy neighbor’s.” And yet the Occupiers are driven by a dark, bitter, resentful, angry and acquisitive greed for stuff that belongs to other people. 


That's simply not true, of course.  Many in the movement are, for example, artists.  They recognize that their profession will not lead to being in the top 1% of all income earners, and they are totally fine with that.  This isn't about coveting the rich and taking the rich's money; it's about the greed OF the rich.

I submit that no political program that is predicated on a violation of twenty percent of God’s moral law can possibly be right, can possibly work, or can possibly be good for America. 

Wow.  Brilliant.

Jesus took a whip to the thieves and the covetous in his day. If he were to come back and do the same thing today, he just might start in Zuccotti Park.

In other words, he might occupy Wall Street after all. 

I see.  So Jesus — the guy who said "blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness" — the guy who was whipped and tortured before being nailed to a cross — if he were on Earth today, he would walk through Zuccotti Park with a whip, flailing on the people who seek economic justice?

Dude, your Jesus sucks.