David Brassfield of Newalla Church of Christ in Oklahoma, the pastor who falsely claimed that atheists are terrible people because we didn’t do anything to help the victims of the Oklahoma tornadoes, has issued an official apology that acknowledges that atheists did help out — but we’re still terrible people. Red Dirt Report has the text of his apology:
“Last Week’s Bulletin Article”
Last week I printed information and deductions that were incomplete, inaccurate, and unfair. That, I freely acknowledge and I apologize for the inadequate research (two websites) that led to all of the above. There were many atheist individuals and groups that helped in the tornado relief efforts and for their work I am thankful.
Behind every error there are usually other errors and when there are errors, there are opportunities to learn. One of those errors was to assume (as the article implied) that all Christians help and all non-Christians do not. That, obviously, is never the case.
Another error was taking personal observations as a final say in a matter. In this area, I adopted a method of which I believe some atheists employ: Namely, the “if I don’t see it, it doesn’t exist” attitude. If it is wrong for one to use that approach to determine the existence of God, then it is wrong for me to use it to determine someone’s involvement in relief efforts.
A third error was entering into a judgmental position in the matter. The application of a label “miserable counselors” to people whom I have never met was not taking the high road and not mine to make.
So far, so good. This is a genuine apology for his error, recognizing what he did wrong and why he did it. And then…
Being human makes us liable to these mistakes. Even atheists can be judgmental and sometimes threatening toward us (in spite of the belief of one blogger who said that it seems that atheists are the ones being persecuted). Reading some of their blogs will easily evidence that. One atheist blogger said, “I am in the camp that wishes to tear down religion. IMHO (in my humble opinion) religion does more harm than good and must be stopped.”
Statements such as that one keeps me from backing down from one comment in my article; that I dread the day if these individuals become the majority in our land.
Turns out he’s still jumping to false conclusions. The blogger he quotes did not say they favor repression to stop religion and the quote does not even imply that. I don’t know who the blogger in question is, but I’d be very surprised if they advocate legal repression as the means of making religion go away; I’d be willing to bet they favor education and intellectual confrontation as the means of doing so.
There is absolutely no doubt in my mind that atheists, should we manage to get enough influence to make the country the way we would like it to be, would treat Christians far better than they have ever treated us.