John on April 18, 2006 at 8:04 am
Last month the prosecution of Abdul Rahman for the crime of converting to Christianity put the spotlight on Islamic law which forbids such conversions under pain of death.
Today, there is a story coming out of India with an eerily similar feel to it. A deputy Prime Minister of India named Lal Krishna Advani is claiming that Christians are a threat to social order.
It is bad enough that religious conversions are conducted in a systematic manner through inducements and coercions [sic]. But such activities are more ominous when they are facilitated by foreign funded organisations, ostensibly under the garb of social service for poor and under-privileged families. We will raise our voice strongly in favour of a national as well as state-level legislation prohibiting religious conversions through inducements or coercion.
From the description, one would think Baptists were offering a new toaster to anyone who accepts Christ as savior, or perhaps rounding up people and forcing them to read the four spiritual laws until they succumb. If all of that sounds a bit fishy, well…it is.
When he was Union home minister, Mr Advani made similar allegations,” said All Indian Catholic Union Chairman John Dayal. “I challenged him to produce a white paper [presenting evidence] and as expected he failed to do so,” Mr Dayal told AsiaNews.
“I challenge him once again to [present evidence] about forcible conversions. In Rajasthan for instance, the total population is well over 60 million, and the Christian population is just about 86,000. This is one tenth of one per cent. Forcible conversions? Ridiculous.”
It may be ridiculous, but blaming a tiny religious minority for their horrible effect on society is a Hitlerian tactic that has been effective in the past. In reality, the “inducements” being offered are aid to the poor and destitute.
“If a few Christians are doing what they can to mitigate the misery of their fellow countrymen, it is actually not to be derided but admired. If Advani and his ilk can do at least a small portion of what some of the Christian organizations are doing for those on the margins of Indian society, our country would have been far better,” emphasised Fr Babu Joseph.
It’s far easier to slander those who are doing something to help than it is to do something yourself. This type of demogoguery is as dangerous as it is stupid.
Category: Religion & Faith |