Re: Bernie Smith’s letter to the editor ‘Religious actions’ (The NEWS, Feb. 12).
I often enjoy the letters from Smith. However, in this letter he has distorted history by cherry picking relatively minor events.
For example, he condemns Christians for murdering African-Americans through lynchings and other brutal acts. Yet, he conveniently forgets to mention that it was Christian organizations first in Britain and then in the American northern states that fought for the ending of slavery. It is more likely that members of the Klan were never true Christians as Christ’s teachings require us to love our enemies.
Conveniently neglected by Smith is the fact that the most horrific events of genocide in recent recorded history were orchestrated by atheists and through tribalism. The most prominent of these are: Pol Pot, the leader of the Cambodian communists, who murdered an estimated one-three million people out of a population of slightly over eight million; China’s Mao Tse Tung perpetrated systematic human rights abuses and is responsible for an estimated 40-70 million deaths through starvation, forced labour and executions; the Soviet Union’s Joseph Stalin is responsible for 20-40 million deaths as a result of his regime’s actions; Nazi Germany’s Adolf Hitler’s regime was responsible for the murder or genocide of more than six million people.
Although Stalin was baptized in the Russian Orthodox Church and later attended its seminary to become a priest, he later became an atheist. Hitler was baptized in the Roman Catholic Church, but became interested in the occult in later life. Hitler only used religion as a means to political ends. To call Hitler a Christian would be a great error in judgment.
The Rwandan genocide was a genocidal mass slaughter of Tutsi and moderate Hutu in Rwanda by members of the Hutu majority tribe. During an approximate 100-day period in 1994, about one million Rwandans were murdered, about 20 per cent of the country’s total population.
Anthonie den BoefNanoose Bay