It’s Hard to Be This Wrong

Kevin Roeten writes on the blog a post that is misguided in the same way that hurricane Katrina was unfortunate. Apparently Mr. Roeten has been distressed over the way he and his fellow Christians have been mis-characterized as defenders of torture because they support water boarding. He gets off to an admirable start citing examples where Christians have done heroic humanitarian things in the past. Although I’m not too sure the Christians get the credit for freeing the slaves by virtue of Lincoln having been a Christian, but that’s a small departure from reality as Mr. Roeten warms up for derailing the sanity train.

Roeten really hits his stride with the statement:

Shockingly, many have molded “enhanced interrogation techniques” with “torture”. There’s a huge difference–as well as a major definition variance–they don’t want to talk about.

Torture involves extreme physical pain or even death, such as the cutting off of appendages, gouging of eyes, use of shredders to the body, electrical shock—you name it. Blood is usually involved.

Apparently psychological torture is an oxymoron to Roeten. A point which will come as a surprise to both scientists and soldiers. By his definition, being forced to live in a hot box and wallow in your own excrement would not qualify as torture, nor would rape. And it is from this tortured logic that Roeten is able to conclude that water boarding is not torture either.

In fairness, I’m uncertain that Roeten would defend gang-rape as a valid interrogation tactic. It might shock his conscience just a bit too much. Which begs the question, why isn’t water boarding similarly shocking? After all, this technique has been illegal and regarded by torture in this country for well over a century. We have tried and executed people accused of performing water boarding as criminals. I think that somehow, the Cheney spin machine has managed to turn the idea of water boarding into something more akin to a non-consensual sponge bath in the mind of the Republican faithful. Curious, since pretty much anyone who’s been water boarded, even if just as a training exercise, is pretty convinced it’s torture.

So Roeten’s already jumped the tracks, but then he decides he might as well drive the sanity train right into the ravine, and take as many fellow Christians with him as possible. He asserts:

It’s likely even Jesus would have OK’d water boarding if it would have saved his Mom. He would’ve done the same to save his Dad, or any one of His disciples. For that matter, He even died to save all humans.

Really? Where is the Church of Our Vengeful Savior located?

I’d like to think this guy was a lone nut-job. Unfortunately, there are plenty out there who have similarly twisted and rationalized their own positions as being what Jesus would do. Gratefully, they are not the majority of Christians. So it would behoove everyone if Roeten stuck to asserting his own insanity without implicating others.

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