Graham F. Scott
Haiti suffers its worst natural disaster in hundreds of years. An estimated 200,000 people are dead or missing. Aid agencies from around the globe rush to stem deadly post-quake effects like malnutrition and cholera. And U.S. evangelical group
Knobs for Jesus Faith Comes by Hearing® in the U.S. sends what? A wind-up, solar-powered talking bible. Actually, 600 of them. Because what Haitians really need right now is a radio that only shouts bible verses in Creole.
The forehead-slapping story from News.com.au:
Called the “Proclaimer,” the audio Bible delivers “digital quality” and is designed for “poor and illiterate people”, the Faith Comes By Hearing group said.
According to their website, the Proclaimer is “self-powered and can play the Bible in the jungle, desert or … even on the moon!” […]
With tens of thousands of Port-au-Prince residents living outdoors because their homes have collapsed or they fear aftershocks from last week’s quake, the audio Bible can bring them “hope and comfort that comes from knowing God has not forgotten them through this tragedy”, the group said.
That is seriously F’d up. I’m sure they sent, like, cash or rice or something too, precisely to head off assholes like me saying they should send something that’s going to actually be of some use.
Religious aid agencies are on the ground in Haiti, and many of them are doing amazing work. I donated to the Red Cross, and World Vision and other Jesus-y aid groups totally deserve our support. But a bunch of self-righteous proselytizers who see this quake as an opportunity to displace Haitian religious practices of Voodoo with crank-radios filled with The Word Of The Lord are just sleazy.