Video: Presiding Bishop, L.A. bishop visit site of San Bernardino shootings

[Episcopal Church Office of Public Affairs press release] Episcopal Church Presiding Bishop and Primate Michael Curry and Bishop J. Jon Bruno of the Diocese of Los Angeles visited the site of the San Bernardino, California, shootings on Dec. 4 and offered this video statement.

Comments

  1. Doug Desper says:

    CNN, MSNBC, the Washington Post, and nearly every major media outlet have listened to the FBI and local San Bernardino officials and called this despicable act what it was: ISIS Terrorism. Farook and Malik targeted their friends and co-workers in an act of religious-motivated terror. Malik pledged her loyalty to the ISIS caliphate. Their home was a bomb factory and the arsenal they were accumulating was appalling. They were planning more acts of terror. These realities move past any misplaced narrative of gun violence into the stark conclusion that there are not just “a few” religious radicals out there. Farook and Malik used the Koran’s instruction to befriend their adversaries in order to deceive them. Research “Taqiyya” (holy lying). It was used with heinous accuracy as this radicalized couple murdered their friends and co-workers, some of whom had just given them a baby shower. No, this isn’t about guns and violence. It is its own reality of ideological warfare that some law-enforcement officials are calling our “new normal”. Until we name it, we will not defeat it.

  2. Sandra Koenig says:

    Will the bishop be at the prayer service at the Cathedral here in San Bernardino on Monday evening?

  3. Fr. Will McQueen says:

    The PB made the comment, “any time human life is taken, it is senseless.” Please tell me sir, does this also apply to the human life in the womb? Oh yeah, I already know the answer to that question and it is a resounding NO. This doesn’t work both ways within TEC. God will not be mocked.

    Bravo Doug Desper. My sentiments exactly.

  4. the rev charles h. morris, d. min. says:

    A couple of the commentators so far seem to have a political /religious viewpoint which absurdly overwhelms any sensible overall discussion of this event. Sure, religion does enter the picture here, in motivation, but it is twisted, false religion and not true Islam. Fundamentalists can foul up the best of religions for their own political or demonic, divisive purposes, as they sometimes do in Christianity, with the Bible. I have supported sensible gun control–the Brady organization and prior to that Handgun Control, Inc. I have marched with many poor, including widows of slain young black men, and in violent areas of St. Louis, for years, several decades ago. Surely the ease of obtaining such terrible firearms and magazines, etc., that the two used in San Bernardino, is an indication of our sore lack of good federal gun control laws. Some 40 % of guns, those sold especially at gun shows, are sold without any background checks whatsoever. If Congress stays in the grip of the NRA and gun manufacturers, we will continue this unconscionable slaughter of the innocents in our great land. Better access to good mental health care is also a tremendous need. We need to fight the good fight with all our might on several fronts at once. It is our Christian calling and citizenship duty in a free democracy!

    • Doug Desper says:

      Charles: The daily problem is trying to find “true Islam”. Islam is not monolithic. It experienced no centralization and in fact has many schools of thought (most of whom strive against each other and even do violence to each other). Islam experienced no Reformation, nor an Enlightenment. Finding “true Islam” in preference to “radical jihadist Islam” is no easy task. Yes, there are moderate Muslims, but they would quite often not be tolerated in countries with a Muslim majority and Muslim theocracy. In the country of Islam’s greatest shrine (Saudi Arabia) the Sharia Law is not only punitive, but abhorrent to anything that Christians should tolerate. The roads leading to Mecca even instruct non-Muslims to come no farther, to exit immediately, because non-Muslims are not worthy to approach and participate. Yes, there are moderate Muslims, but their coreligionists would have quite a lot to say about that….and it would not go well. Looking at the Muslim-majority nations around the globe it’s a pretty safe bet that these would represent “true Islam”. Anyone with working eyes and ears will know in an instant that there are practices and values in the laws of those nations that will not and cannot be reconciled with Western democracy nor a people practicing Christian toleration. If something is being twisted there sure are a lot of people twisting.

  5. Dr. Carol Gerard says:

    Mr. Desper, I have followed your voluminous comments and find you to be a person of great passion. The world would be better served if you devoted your considerable energy to acts of mercy and compassion instead of harsh “instruction” and criticism. It is highly likely that no good comes of your words.

  6. Doug Desper says:

    Dr. Gerard — Thank-you for being concerned about my energy for acts of mercy and compassion. Judging me without knowing me, however, you aren’t aware of my life’s work and the place that mercy and compassion hold. Notwithstanding, the subject at hand remains the misplaced narrative about guns in this act of planned terrorism. I am disappointed that some of our Church’s leadership rely on talking points that have little to do with the realities that even the media are recognizing. “Good” always comes by focusing on the root of the matter rather than distracted narratives of what one wants the issue to be. The issue is radical jihadist terror by ISIS who has become embedded among us. It was far overdue, but in President Obama’s Tuesday speech he finally stopped referring to the Fort Hood massacre as “workplace violence” and instead called it by its name: terrorism. Unfortunately, Farook and Mailk paid no attention to gun restrictions (and all their revisions), laws prohibiting making bombs, or any other law that discourages murder or terrorism. They had the backing of money from overseas and were gearing up for much worse. The FBI speaks for me and many other Americans when they focus attention on this carnage as being caused by something significantly more than a gun.

    • Hello, Doug!
      Arguably, in military lingo, the root of the matter with regard to defeating a combatant is the combatant’s “center of gravity” (COG), which is more difficult to determine in asymmetrical warfare. There are voices that support searching for the COG within the context of non-state combatants, asymmetrical global war, and COG. In conventional warfare you take the land and leadership and you win because that often is the COG in conventional warfare, which can be addressed with guns. You pointed out FBI’s comment that this is caused by more than guns, and you also raised the issue of ideology.

      It seems plausible to suggest that ISIS’s COG is contempt for human beings because of the atrocities it commits in its recruitment propaganda and its use of the West’s expressions of contempt to expand and continue the fight. This COG also suggests the type of spiritual warfare that has to be fought, that is, a war on contempt. While we defend ourselves we have to loudly argue that all human beings have value and ought not be contemned. God’s people win if we can undermine contempt in the ideological space that the combatants have gained. God’s people? Christian, Muslims, Jews, all who seek the unity of God are God’s people. This requires exposing Satan’s tactics in his attempts to divide God’s people.

  7. The Rev. Charles H. Morris, D. Min. says:

    A correction to my post, above: in line 7, the word “widows” should read “mothers.”
    To Mr. Desper–his response to my above input: I actually agree with probably most of what you write here, but can we not all put our emphasis on brotherly/sisterly love, understanding, harmony, peace (with justice), and attempting to work through our difficulties together, rather than just attacking others with a sense of being right while others are wrong? At the same time, can we not all work together on getting sensible and life-saving gun laws and health laws regarding mental problems passed in our great U.S.A???

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