25
Oct 16

NO, not Blackleaf!

Jack Chick is dead.

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The sound you hear is the millions of facebook posts and "likes" celebrating that fact.

For those of you who do not know, Jack Chick founded Chick Publications back in the 70s. His eponymous publishing house produced small comics of a particularly conspiratorial evangelistic bent. With these seeds were planted modern day right wing fundamentalist Christianity. Trust me, I grew up in a church that bought into them.

Jack Chick claimed the pope was the anti-Christ, that Islam was established as a tool of the Catholic church that later broke away, the devil planted dinosaur bones, 40,000 people were killed in occult sacrifices every year in America, and the King James Version was the only "Holy" Bible. Most famously he spurred on the so-called "Satanic Panic" that told us we were all going to hell and taking our country with us if we allowed Dungeons and Dragons to exist (and kept me from a hobby I love until I was almost 30) and that Harry Potter was a gateway to the occult. Needless to say he was anti- just about anything you can imagine that wasn't right wing fundamentalist straight white American male.

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Personally, I also think that his attitude was inherently antithetical to the teachings of Christ and that history will weigh his contributions to the fractious nature of our society and find him wanting.

However, and far be it for me to defend the man, we should consider something.

If your neighbors house was on fire and she did not know would you not have a moral obligation to attempt to save her? I think so. Now what if we suppose the house was not on fire, but you perceived it to be for some reason - even delusion. Would you not still have a moral obligation to attempt to save her? Again, yes you would because the actual reality of the situation has less to do with your moral obligations than your perception of it. Even if you went so far as to break into her house and carry her out. If you really believed the house was on fire you would have a moral obligation to do so.

You would also be either insane or stoned out of your mind and in either case we would put you somewhere nice and safe where you could not hurt yourself or anyone else. Or maybe shoot you.

So, whatever else we can say about Jack Chick we can say that he acted morally based on his perception of the world.

May he be forgotten by history and his plans not prosper.

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