|Truth Doesn't Matter|
|(by Rachel Williams)|
I really tried not to put this on my page. I wrote most of it like two weeks ago. But I didn't want to put it on my page since it will probably just make people mad.
But I'm really sick of people telling me that my beliefs about God are wrong and their religion is the only one that counts.
I'm especially sick of it since I've seen how their religion is so willing to accept a lie as the truth just because it makes a good example.
They try to convince me about their religion by quoting from a book that only people who believe their religion think is the truth. It's hard for me to believe that an entire book that's almost 2000 years old has the word of God in it and wasn't either changed or invented by religious leaders when I can see how the same religion isn't even willing to tell the truth about one single word that was supposedly spoken by a teenage girl 6 months ago. Maybe if I didn't see how their religious leaders are so willing to let a lie become truth today I might be able to believe the bible isn't just some of stories that were fudged to make them more inspiring 2000 years ago.
I bet you're wondering what I'm talking about. I'm talking about the legend of Cassie Bernall, the Columbine High School student who's been called a Christian martyr because when her killers asked her if she believed in God she said, "Yes" and they shot her.
It's a really inspiring story. It's too bad though that its based on reports from a few confused scared students right after the shooting, and that now the investigation is almost complete it turns out that Cassie wasn't even the girl who was asked about God.
But I haven't seen a lot of Christian leaders trying to tell their people that the story about Cassie wasn't true. They keep on letting them think that Cassie was a martyr. They don't seem to care about the truth about what happened in the library at Columbine. They don't seem to care that the girl who really said "Yes" was shot and survived. I guess its because they think it makes a better religious symbol to have a dead martyr than a living survivor. They can inspire more people that way. So what if its not the truth.
So if its so easy for them to be willing to let a lie continue to be their religious truth only 6 months after Columbine, it would probably be a lot easier to get people to accept 2000 year old lies as the truth. And since they don't seem to care much about the truth today why should I believe it was any different before? Why should I believe that 2000 years ago people didn't decide that a story about another dead prophet wouldn't last long but if they made it a story about the son of God it would probably work better?
In case you don't believe me about Cassie you just have to read the reports about what the investigators found out. There are articles in the Denver Post ("Faith In Cassie's Last Words Waivers" and "Bernalls Defend Book's Accuracy" and "Schnurr's Memory Corroborated By Other Witnesses"). There's an article in the Washington Post called (" COLUMBINE MIRACLE:A MATTER OF BELIEF: The Last Words of Littleton Victim Cassie Bernall Test a Survivor's Faith--and Charity").
According to most of the witnesses that day including Cassie's best friend who was right next to her when Cassie was shot Cassie never said "Yes" and was never even asked about God. The girl who said "Yes" was a girl named Valeen Schnurr who was shot and wounded really bad but survived.
If you read
the Washington Post article and you'll find out that, The Rocky Mountain News reported that one of those witnesses, Craig Scott, the
original source for the Cassie story, pointed out to investigators the table where
he said the conversation occurred, and it turned out to be Val's, not
The Washington Post article said it really good when they said, In questions of death and faith, it's the power of the story that counts, the tale that helps the mind grasp the unfathomable. Compared with that comfort, the truth is a trifle.
That's the way all religions work. People will do whatever they need to for comfort. Some people find it in a bottle. Other people find it in a bible. The bible's a lot better but that doesn't mean there's any real truth in it.
The Washington Post article also said, Should the believers accept the literal truth, they'd be left with a hopeless equation: Schnurr said yes and she lived, but saints and martyrs don't live. Saint Cassie probably said nothing and died.
How many of the thousand of the priests and ministers who told the story of Cassie to their congregations are going to stand up and say, "We were wrong." Will they go back and say - guess what- Cassie was not a martyr but just one of many other victims.
How many of them will tell the truth? They could say that, "God WAS in the library at Columbine. It was another girl who was asked if she had believed in God. She had already been shot and critically wounded. The shooter had stopped to reload his gun and asked if she believed in God. And she said "Yes." She wasn't shot again. She survived her wounds and is now a freshman in college. God heard her affirmation and rewarded her with life".
Why aren't they telling that story? Is it because it doesn't sound as good as Cassie's story? Is it because they don't want to admit they were wrong? Is it because a dead martyr is more valuable to their religion than a living hero? Is it because if they admit Cassie's story isn't true then what comfort can they find from the murders of all those kids? Is it because the truth has always been bent by religions? Is it because the story of Cassie is exactly the kind of myth and legend that most religions are based on?
Washington Post article and you'll find out that, It's a puzzle that Schnurr, 19, has no interest in solving. Because while
it's frustrating to see someone else canonized for your miracle, the stakes here are too high. She'd have to confront two grieving parents,
tense neighbors starved for hope, and an American Christian community
that's found its most effective symbol in decades.
Washington Post article and you'll find out that, "You will never change the story of Cassie," says Dave McPherson, the pastor at the Bernalls' church. To illustrate how far it
has gone, he tells a story of traveling to a remote church in Sudan a few
months after the shooting. The congregation's first request was that he
tell the story of Saint Cassie.
In a few months something that never happened has been accepted by people all over the world as the gospel truth. You can't change their belief in it even though it didn't happen. Given hundreds and thousands of years isn't it possible that there's been a lot more of the Gospel truth that also might not have ever happened?
Washington Post article and you'll find out that, Her story has sparked a kind of teenage hysteria, a Christian-sanctified death wish. "God has laid it on my heart that I'm going to be
martyred," sophomore Tina Leonard told a Southern Baptist news service.
"When I told one of my friends, he said, 'That's awesome. I wish it could
happen to me.' "
Washington Post article and you'll find out that, As time has passed, many Christians have come to think of the Cassie story as proof of God's existence. A cover article in the
current issue of Christianity Today argues that Cassie's "heroic yes, with
the muzzle of a gun pressed up against" her, is this generation's defining
moment, much as the assassination of President Kennedy and Martin Luther King
Jr. was to the generation before.
Because when it comes to religions, Truth Doesn't Matter.
|Copyright © 1999 Rachel Williams|
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