Am I and MP Willie Jackson the only New Zealanders who don’t mock the Destiny Church? I suspect like me Willie’s an atheist but as a broadcaster he always spoke up for their excellent social work Destiny does with society’s losers, specially maori, and good on Jackson for that. Surely there’s no doubting Brian and Hannah Tamaki’s sincerity in their fundamentalist Christian beliefs. Why then does the media constantly sneer at them?
Brian Tamaki’s adoption of the title Bishop drew widespread scorn. Why? It was perfectly appropriate. He’s the head of a sizeable church.
The Bishop likes riding a Harley Davidson, this for unknown reasons also inviting media derision. Why?
A month ago a Dominion Post cartoonist, one of two struggling to make up for the departure of the great Tom Scott, published a grossly libellous cartoon asserting the Bishop’s real God was money. He repeated it again today. There’s no evidence of that and Tamaki could take them to the cleaners should he sue. I wish he would and would happily fund it.
I find all religions ridiculous and some such as Islam with its denigration of women, downright evil. But each to their own and if folk want to believe in supernaturalism, then so be it. That’s their business albeit still rich material for teasing. But the media’s treatment of Destiny has never been teasing. Rather it’s consistently been outright hatred.
A large part of the animosity seems to stem from Tamaki refusing to go along with the recent years vogue of treating blokes who like to put their cocks in other blokes’ bums as pursuing some sort of higher art form deserving of fawning admiration. It’s not. As a libertarian I don’t give a damn what they do but one thing’s indisputable and that is it aint no artistic performance. Tamaki’s objection is consistent with the bible and his fundamentalist approach.
When he asserted the Christchurch earthquake was an expression of God’s wrath at rampant homosexuality I had fun with that. But not so the media, rather it drew an outpouring of raw hatred. Why? Who knows, it may be true after all the Christian’s God has certainly got form with some fairly rotten behaviour over the past couple of thousand years.
In the words of Winston Churchill’s son Randolph after Evelyn Waugh bet him he couldn’t read the bible in a week, “God, God’s a shit”, this at 10 minute intervals. Randolph lost the bet incidentally but he certainly had God nailed.
Now the Tamakis plan another crack at forming a political party, predictably inducing widespread media sneering. Again, why?
If one accepts democracy as a good thing, then notwithstanding its flaws, surely all aspiring participants should be encouraged, failing which it sinks into a basically undemocratic closed shop, dictatorial scenario, such as exists with many purported but effectively one party dictatorships. The disruptive effect of so-called minor parties and periodic new parties is an extremely healthy thing for functioning democracies.
Hannah Tamaki is to head the new party. She says it will not be a Christian party but instead will promote traditional family values such as those pushed by the Conservative Party in 2011. What’s wrong with that, not that I’m any example?
The Party will not succeed in a crowded field for a number of practical political reasons but its existence will still be a good thing for our democracy.
It’s long overdue for the media to show the Destiny Church the respect it deserves for its energy, passion and excellent social work and cease the sustained vitriol.