It has come to my attention that there are several churches within just a few blocks of the sacred ground formerly occupied by the Alfred P. Murrah Federal Building.
Here’s the background:
On April 19, 1995, at 9:02 a.m. local time, a massive truck bomb exploded in front of the Alfred P. Murrah Federal Building in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, killing 168 people (including 19 children) and injuring over 800.
The explosion destroyed about half of the Federal Building, damaged or destroyed an additional 300 buildings, and was felt as far as 30 miles away.
The truck bomb was a rented Ryder truck filled with about 5,000 pounds of explosives, including ammonium nitrate, nitromethane, and agricultural fertilizer, and was driven by Timothy McVeigh, who was pulled over 90 minutes after the bombing for driving without a license plate. McVeigh was arrested on a firearms charge, spent two days in jail, and was then charged with the bombing.
Terry Nichols, McVeigh’s accomplice, was arrested at a later date in Kansas, and was charged in the bombing on May 10.
Over 12,000 individuals assisted in the relief and rescue operations after the bombing, and many of them have suffered from post-traumatic stress disorder, clinical depression, anxiety, and additional problems because of the deeply traumatic nature of the bombing and its aftermath… [emphasis added]
Inserted from <http://www.oklahomacitybombing.com/oklahoma-city-bombing.html>
McVeigh and Nichols were Christian terrorists, who carried their act in protest over the destruction of the Branch Davidian compound in Waco, Texas.
Now, I recognize the Constitution gives Christians the right to have churches where they want, but really?! Out of respect for the families of the victims of this Cristofascist attack, shouldn’t these Christians worship somewhere else? Isn’t having churches so near the hallowed ground of the memorial to these victims like putting an SS memorial at Auschwitz? They may have the right, but is it the right thing to do? To be so insensitive to the needs of suffering families, the pastors of these churches must be truly evil. The only decent thing to do is to tear down the churches without delay.
OK, time to get real.
One of the cognitive techniques I use in volunteer work with prisoners and former prisoners is called “wearing the hat backward”. If I encounter a thinking pattern or attitude toward others that will interfere with someone becoming a productive citizen, I suggest that they take that thinking pattern or attitude (the hat) and apply it in the opposite direction (wear it backwards). More often than not they see it in a new light, and develop empathy for the former targets. This is what I have done here.
The notion that churches, who had absolutely nothing to do with the Oklahoma City Bombing, should give up their places of worship is absurd. Their congregants must have been just as appalled by what transpired as the rest of us, if not more so. The perpetrators were extremists, and not even authentic Christians. To blame these churches is despicable.
Everything I said in the last paragraph applies equally to the Muslim place of worship two near the WTC site. So I appeal to the right, please try to wear the hat backwards.