Well, I can’t leave comments at Positive Liberty for some reason or other, however a brief response to Mr Kuznicki seems in order.

Mr Kuznicki is up in arms about conservatives daring to “defend” a Rick Warren/Martin Ssempa connection. He finds a movement toward abstinence inappropriate as well as Mr Ssempa’s anti-gay rhetoric. Now, I’m not going to defend the latter. However, a little googling shows that the Saddleback church (Rick Warren’s “purpose driven” mega-church) has embraced an AIDS ministry. The concentration of this ministry accoriding to their web site concentrates confronting AIDS in particular because of the stigma associated with the disease. And additionally, they’ve chosen to focus their aid on orphans and children with AIDS. In spreading their assistance from the States to Africa apparently Mr Ssempa has aided their particular mission.

Mr Kuznicki asks how those particular things which bother him about Mr Ssempa:

–Agitated successfully to remove all mention of condoms from Uganda’s anti-HIV campaign.
–Burned condoms in public and otherwise condemned them. For Jesus.
–Recommended that gays be imprisoned.
–Expressed a belief that witches were making people sick.

He wonders how this could be worse?

Well, obviously it could. African AIDS is not a homosexual phenomena, unlike in the States. That epidemic is apparently driven by rampant widespread adultery. One might Imagine burning condoms were part of a movement to stem this tide and promote the notion of fidelity to one’s spouse. Imagine that, the horror! Why might a conservative support such a clearly silly notion.

It was Mr Kuznicki’s last bullet point that inspired my initial remarks regarding intentions and deeds. If one takes the two notions that Mr Ssempa has been allowing and facilitatting the Saddleback church in getting aid medical, food, and support to orphans and children with HIV/AIDS and at the same time Dr Ssempa thinks that witchcraft and the supernatural impacts the spread of disease. Well, we have an effect, i.e., aid to orphans. We have a belief, witchcraft. The question I posed, and Mr Kuznicki has failed to address, is to ask is why he discounts aid to HIV infected orphans because Mr Ssempa has a belief in witchcraft, i.e., if one’s beliefs (intentions) aren’t pure … does that discount one’s deeds, i.e., facilitating aid to orphans?

Apparently, in Mr Kuznicki’s world … it does.

One final remarks, I don’t know the extent or basis of Mr Ssempa’s political influence in Uganda. However, it is my impression that in sub-Saharan Africa in general there are generically very strong anti-gay biases in the populus. That a politician personally on occaision panders to this to garner support is no indication of their personal feeling and may in fact just be a requirement to get support to garner the political capital to do other things, such as for example try to turn the culture toward monagamy and to aid orphans.

Filed under: ConservativeEthics & MoralityMark O.

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