Someone made and posted Mr. De Ayala’s meme on Facebook, which means he’s on his way to Internet BS-stardom…
When tragedy strikes, expect weak-minded, hypocritical homo sapiens to say something stupid or to post pure BS on social media.
In politics, there’s this phrase “politicizing a tragedy” that refers to some political ideologues’ habit of using a man-made tragedy to push their sinister political agenda. CNN’s Piers Morgan made a career out of politicizing gun-related crimes in the United States to support his total gun ban advocacy.
There are also some people in other areas, apart from politics, who try to make sense of a tragedy by taking on other people’s honest, natural, candid reactions to certain man-made or natural catastrophes.
Reaction is an innate part of human nature. We react to things and express our natural thoughts about exciting or tragic events because we’re humans. And our thought is conditioned by the things we absorbed from our environment. Expressed thoughts are influenced by our beliefs or belief system. This is why some people, e.g, the religious ones, express their thoughts or reactions in a way that shows their religiosity whenever something bad or good happens (e.g., say, “praise the Lord” or “let’s pray for everyone’s safety”, etc.).
Now consider this ass-theist who posted the following on his Facebook timeline:
That’s Mr. Marcus De Ayala‘s brutally honest yet irresponsible and boorish commentary on some religious people’s reactions to today’s Bohol earthquake tragedy that reportedly killed dozens of helpless people.
Marcus De Ayala said: “Your prayers to Bohol and the people there are useless and hypocritical.”
Why is it hypocritical for people to express their natural reactions or emotions? Of course, to ass-atheists like Mr. De Ayala, ‘prayers’ are useless. But to religious people who are entitled to their faith and beliefs, prayers are not merely important; they also serve as a ‘psychological mechanism’ to cope with a tragedy. Secularists or non-believers who were raised by their religious families know and understand this. Four words: ‘To each his own’!
I am a non-believer; however, I am not an ass-theist (asshole atheist). I am more of a secularist.
In my humble opinion, ass-theists are socialistic or collectivist in nature. They’re the types of militant atheists who’d like to ban religion, and who deeply believe that people must be legally saved or protected (by the state, of course) from the perceived “evils” of religion. Well, I know some people who hold this kind of belief system but who are actually too naif to understand that their deeply held political dogma represents another form of religion called “Socialism” or “Communism”.
Then he said: “If you’re really concerned, go there and actually help.”
But who is he to tell others what to do? If it’s physically possible to teleport from one place to another, I am 100% sure the subject of Mr. De Ayala‘s self-righteous criticisms would have teleported from their respective places to Bohol and help the victims there. But we don’t live in a ‘Unicorn world’ where everything, including teleportation, is possible.
We can only do so much. For many people who live in the metropolis or outside the province of Bohol, expressing heart-felt sympathy for the victims or those affected by the 7.2-magnitude earthquake is enough. Those fortunate enough can simply donate to charitable institutions and other NGOs that pledged to reach out to Boholanos.
Marcus De Ayala also said, and this one takes the cake:
Prayers and posting pictures of ruined structures won’t help rebuild Bohol, it won’t stop earthquakes and most of all, it won’t make you look like a concerned citizen, a Filipino with a kind heart, a helpful and compassionate individual or a better person!
It’s amazing he didn’t even realize everything he said smacks of ass-theist hypocrisy. What I find really hypocritical and incredible is that Mr. Marcus De Ayala was apparently more affected by some people’s posts and online activities than by the killer earthquake that hit Bohol.
Posting images of the ruined structures inform people. It informed me and many others who unfortunately don’t possess supernatural power or the means to visit the place in real time. We live in a digital age where people are also empowered to act and serve as independent journalists. Others posted photos of fallen churches and old buildings because they value the ruined heritage sites that made the place famous. Yet Mr. De Ayala was too clueless to realize that insensitively criticizing other people’s business won’t make him look like a concerned citizen as well. Rather, it makes him look like a fool, as he took this very opportunity to tell his friends and others how dogmatic and rigid he is.
My initial reaction, after learning this incident, was that I thought, ‘what if it happened in the city?’ But of course it would be ridiculous to say people living in Metro Manila were lucky to have not been affected by the high-intensity earthquake, because no one deserves a tragedy, whether it be man-caused or natural.
There are two important concepts Mr. De Ayala and others, who agree with him, missed– Context and Timing.
This is not the time for ass-theists to flaunt their militant atheism, or to criticize religious people for expressing their natural feelings or reactions. Timing is everything. While I respect De Ayala‘s militant atheism, which I call ‘ass-theism’, I believe he should have considered the bad timing of his insensitive Facebook rant. But make no mistake. I am all for anyone’s right to ridicule; however, one should always consider timing and context. Whether you’re a “nirereglang atheist” or not, always consider the impact and possible consequences of your actions.
What just happened in Bohol is a natural tragedy. The tragedy, and its resulting damage, was caused by acts of nature. But it would be utterly stupid to blame nature either. We can’t blame anyone, not even our pork barrel-addict government.
Also, I don’t think it’s right for anyone to politicize this tragedy, because that would be very disrespectful to the victims and the people of Bohol. Instead, it’s time for the Filipinos to unite, and for the country’s public officials understand the value of their jobs. And their job is not to steal from the public coffers, but to see to it that every citizen’s right is protected.
Although I don’t buy that “everything has a purpose” mantra or fanaticism, perhaps it would be fair to think of this latest tragedy as a nature’s challenge to our endurance and perceptiveness as a nation.
This should remind us of how Japan rebuilt its tsunami-torn cities with the help and understanding of its people in a very short span of time.
As to the difference between atheism and secularism
I stated in this blog the difference between atheism and secularism:
There’s a big difference between secularism and atheism. Atheism can be anything; it is what is being espoused by the Filipino Freefarters. Most leftists are simply atheists. In fact, most of them would like to ban religion. Wait! They did that in the past. They did not only ban religions; they also carried out wholesale political persecution of men and women of faith. Leftism does not call for the separation of church and state; it calls for the total destruction of the former in favor of a state-imposed mysticism. This is one of the primary mandates of their patron saint Karl Marx who said: “Die Religion … ist das Opium des Volkes.” The leftists would simply like to replace religion with social mysticism in which the state or the dictator himself is to be regarded as “god” or the provider people’s needs.
Secularism does not call for the banning of all religions or the destruction of faith. It recognizes every individual’s right to worship anything. Yet it recognizes the separation of church and state. Yes, secularism is the idea behind the principle of separation of church and state that ended centuries of crusades and religious wars. Secularism means that the “government should not prefer one religion to another, or religion to irreligion” (according to Justice Souter).
How his Facebook friends reacted:
Perhaps he’s got ADHD 😉
He asked his ass-theist comrades’ opinion at this Facebook group:
He must have been influenced by this image… If it did, then he’s simply took the photo very literally and made exaggerated assumptions upon which he based his intolerant, hypocritical Facebook rant.