Blood is in the water and the sharks feast. This week’s meal is Joel Osteen. The pastor of America’s largest church is being vilified because he didn’t open up his church to flood victims of Hurricane Harvey.
In the court of social media, you make a mistake, and there is no forgiveness. It’s a shame culture, and no matter what a person does to make things right, it’s too little, too late. It’s just them doing good because “they got caught,” it’s just them doing good because there was a backlash, it’s just them doing good to try to put up the facade that they’re good (but they’re not good). And even if they do the right thing, it’s not because they learned from a mistake. When we’ve seen someone fail, especially someone we already dislike, their good deeds count for nothing. Their goodness is viewed with cynicism.
There have been numerous articles criticizing Houston mega-church pastor Joel Osteen, the pastor of Lakewood Church, the largest church in America for not doing enough in the aftermath of Hurricane Harvey, and for not letting people stay in the expansive church facility as a shelter.
In terms of his prosperity gospel theology, there are many reasons to criticize Osteen. I’m not a fan of him.
In the movie JFK, there’s a climactic scene where Kevin Costner shows the absurdity of the idea that Lee Harvey Oswald could have been the lone gunmen who assassinated John F. Kennedy. To just watch that scene, it might seem like a compelling argument. Conspiracy theories about John F. Kennedy have always been prevalent. It’s been suggested that it was the Soviets or that Castro wanted him dead to avenge the Bay of Pigs. Others have said the mafia wanted him dead because of Attorney General Robert F. Kennedy’s iron fisted stances on dealing with organized crime. I’ve read that Kennedy knew his health problems would continue to degenerate and he personally staged the assassination as an elaborate suicide to cement his legacy. Others suggest that Lyndon Johnson wanted him dead, that the two men hated each other, and that Johnson would have happily seen Kennedy killed in order to become the president.
It’s important to understand that there has never been any proof to show that the Soviets, Castro, Johnson, or the mob had anything to do with the Kennedy assassination.
At the end of the day, Occam’s Razor needs to prevail. The simplest conclusion is the most reasonable. The conclusion which is making the least assumptions needs to be favored. Such extreme events would have needed to have occurred to have pulled off the various conspiracies and to have successfully kept them secret for a half century. The burden of proof must be on the most plausible explanation which is that Lee Harvey Oswald acted alone. In interviews, members of Oswald’s own family have said that they don’t raze issues with the belief that Oswald acted alone, because it’s what they believe too!