Tuesday, October 27, 2009

The Gospel According to GOOGLE

So yesterday I was confabbing with the fabulous Rachel Swan who is heading up Integrity's blog/Facebook/twitter communication world. (And doing a fabulous job, BTW!) Anyway, we hatched the idea of marking tomorrow's signing of the Matthew Shepard/James Byrd, Jr. Hate Crime Prevention Act -- scheduled for 4:45p.m. EDT -- with an invitation to virtual common prayer in remembrance of those lost to hate crime violence and in thanksgiving for this landmark legislation.
More about that later.
The point of this blog post is not prayers we'll offer tomorrow. It is Google searches we made yesterday.
Thinking that we should come up with a suggested prayer for the occasion, I did what all lazy liturgists do ... looked for a wheel to reinvent. And so did a "Google Search" for "prayer hate crimes" ... thinking I'd come up with some language to help get the prayer-writing-process moving.
Was I in for a big surprise.
What did I get when I Googled "prayer hate crimes?" Dozens of sites urging prayers to PREVENT the passage of hate crime legislation.
If all I knew about Christians from what I Googled on hate crimes I'd come away thinking that all they cared about was keeping gay men and lesbians, transgendered folk, women and the disabled from having the same protection from hate motivated violence as this nation has provided for those targeted because of race, religion or national origin.
Now, "proof texting" Google is as bad an idea as proof texting the Bible is ... but yesterday's foray inspired me to redouble our efforts to make sure there are alternative voices of faith out there neutralizing those who are more interested in praying for the defeat of legislation protecting members of the human family from hate motivated violence than they are in praying for the victims of that violence.
(See also: "Inasmuch as you have done it unto the least of these, you have done it to me!")


JimB said...

You were surprised? The haters really have to believe God is on their side or face themselves in a mirror. Even they do not like what they see. So "God says so" gives them a pass, they can avoid looking glasses.

uffda51 said...

Just when you think you've heard and seen it all. But I did learn a couple of things on my brief google adventure. David Duke now has a Ph.D. Who knew?