I just saw this article in an email I receieved. Can people be so heartless as to blame the gays and lesbians for causing a horrible hurricane? Man, we must be good!!! Anyhow, I do not know how some people think. People were killed and hurting, first thing in my head is, How can I help? In these minds, its.. Who's fault is it? I guess we will never understand.
An organization of Christian fundamentalists claims the destruction brought on by Hurricane Katrina is God's judgment against New Orleans for holding festivals like the annual gay Southern Decadence party.
"Although the loss of lives is deeply saddening, this act of God destroyed a wicked city," said Repent America director Michael Marcavage on the organization's Web site. "From 'Girls Gone Wild' to 'Southern Decadence,' New Orleans was a city that had its doors wide open to the public celebration of sin. May it never be the same."
Southern Decadence, which was scheduled for the Labor Day weekend, has since been canceled.
The comments from Repent America come as New Orleans Mayor Ray Nagin noted Katrina probably killed thousands of people in the "Crescent City."
"Let us pray for those ravaged by this disaster," Marcavage said. "However, we must not forget that the citizens of New Orleans tolerated and welcomed the wickedness in their city for so long."
Repent America's Web site noted New Orleans' past three mayors issued official proclamations welcoming visitors to Southern Decadence. The Web site also noted the "New Orleans City Council made other proclamations recognizing the annual homosexual celebration."
"May this act of God cause us all to think about what we tolerate in our city limits, and bring us trembling before the throne of Almighty God," Marcavage concluded, adding a biblical citation from Matthew 5:45: "[God] sendeth rain on the just and on the unjust."
The Rev. Dr. Cindi Love, executive director of the Metropolitan Community Churches (MCC), quoted back from the Bible. "Jeremiah 29 says, 'I have good plans for you, not plans to hurt you. I will give you hope and a good future.' We rest on these promises."
"I feel sad that anyone is taking advantage of the suffering of people when they are so vulnerable," Love told the PlanetOut Network. "So, I am praying for our brothers and sisters who are blaming gays and lesbians for this disastrous hurricane. I ask them to use their energy to pray for those afflicted and to take the resources being used to attack gays and lesbians and use them to provide relief. There are far more 'straight' people, including children, suffering in this incident than gay people. I don't believe God punishes any of us with natural disasters, and I believe that God is with us in this one all the way through."
Love added that the MCC was organizing a relief effort.
"The scripture that comes to my mind is 'Jesus wept,'" said the Rev. Susan Russell, president of Integrity, an LGBT Episcopal group. "Jesus weeps today for the loss of life in New Orleans and he weeps that his gospel is being hijacked by the rabid rhetoric of the religious right -- that is in its own way as destructive to our national fabric as Hurricane Katrina has been."
"What needs to happen is people of all backgrounds need to unite and focus instead on helping bring supplies to the people in need," Russell said. "Hurricane Katrina did not discriminate in its path of destruction, and neither does God's love."