Monday, January 16, 2006

Nagin Divines the Will of God

Today, New Orleans Mayor Ray Nagin said hurricanes Katrina and Rita were signs that God is angry with us.

"Surely God is mad at America. He sent us hurricane after hurricane after hurricane, and it's destroyed and put stress on this country…Surely he doesn't approve of us being in Iraq under false pretenses. But surely he is upset at black America also. We're not taking care of ourselves.”

I never take issue with a public figure who acknowledges God and openly admits seeking the Lord’s wisdom. But I take great issue with any public figure who pretends he or she can divine the will of God. I don’t like it when Republicans do it and it’s no better when a Democrat like Nagin does it.

What Mayor Nagin should have said is that, while we do not know why the tragedies of Katrina and Rita struck, we have a pretty good idea of what God expects of us now. To pick up the pieces, to form the communities anew, to make ourselves stronger where we were weak and whole where we were divided. The reasons for such destruction are unknown and, frankly, unimportant. It's what we do now that truly matters.

That would be a statement I could support.

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