This Monday, New Zealand experienced another massive earthquake. Centred near Kaikoura and with a magnitude of 7.8 (Richter)*; it is the latest in a series of earthquakes that have risen to international prominence during this decade. From the Christchurch point of view there was little damage, probably helped by the fact that anything at risk has already fallen down or being demolished. The most serious issue seems to be NCEA exams.
However, it’s a different story elsewhere: Wellington appears to have received a wake-up call, with parts of the CBD off-access and buildings in a perilous state. It’s worst at Kaikoura, where there have been fatalities and the area is isolated due to damaged road and rail. I think this will be quite a serious issue in the coming weeks and months. Christchurch may yet see disruption in terms of logistics and shortages of supplies. Of course, this pales in comparison to the effects felt in Kaikoura and other small towns and in Wellington; but it highlights the multi-faceted nature of these disasters.
Part of the media coverage has been around what caused the quake: The Guardian has a nice article about the situation as it stands. Speculation has been rife about the role of the “supermoon” (hint: it probably doesn’t have anything to do with it). However, could it be something else?
Density Destiny Church cult leader and money enthusiast Brian Tamaki has a different idea. Before and after Monday’s event he blamed NZ’s natural disasters on “sin”, in particular members of the LGBTQ+ community. Strangely enough, he’s not the first to suggest this. The London Swinton Circle, a pro-Apartheid UK Conservative Party pressure group suggested that the earthquake in NZ was a warning against same-sex marriage. Which earthquake in particular the racialist bastards are referring to is not clear; after all we have had many over a long period of time. Tamaki claims that LGBTQ+ folk are responsible for all of them, just to avoid any confusion.
I find their claims laughable. Firstly (and obviously), I reject the existence of the Christian God (and all others). Something that doesn’t exist cannot make things happen. Secondly, earthquakes still occurred in “the good old days”, when LGBTQ+ individuals were persecuted and suppressed. Indeed the most devastating recent earthquake was in 2011, over 2 years before same-sex marriage was made law.
We could use Tamaki’s logic to conclude that NZ was punished in 2011 for not having yet legalised same-sex marriage. We can then reconcile the fact that there are still earthquakes after 2013 by the idea of Schrödinger’s God (God is simultaneously for and against all issues until you ask a Christian what their position is on said issue)**. Indeed the multiplicity of quantum Christian states is clearly evident in the Newshub article, where a liberal church vicar gives a warm (and rather constructive) retort to Tamaki.
This whole issue reveals the perilous state of Christianity. Michael Joseph Savage, first Labour Party Prime Minister of New Zealand described the then-new social security system as “applied Christianity”. In this day and age, Brian Tamaki places demands on his followers to donate exorbitant amounts to the
Density Destiny Church, while he and his family flaunt their wealth and moralise to those who are less well-off (which may include their followers)! This is the well-known prosperity gospel, see John Oliver for a humourous take on the whole sorry affair.
Not only are Brian Tamaki’s views on human sexuality repugnant, his attitude towards life and money are also repugnant. The existence and actions of his cult undermine the public attitude towards well-meaning Christians who are interested in making society better (even if it is for what I may see as superstitious reasoning). They are unfairly lumped in with Destiny by virtue of being part of the same broad church (pardon the pun)!
To conclude what has been a beautifully unhinged post, let’s allow all this talk about the cause of earthquakes to be led by the experts. It’s for the benefit of us all (except for Mr Tamaki’s wallet) to do so.
*I prefer the Richter scale as it actually gives us an idea of the strength of an earthquake. The Mercalli scale is too humanocentric.
**I’ve just made this up. A Google search seems to suggest that the original Schrödinger’s*** Cat can be used to prove/disprove God. I didn’t bother clicking on any of the links because they looked boring.
***For those who read my posts in my voice, it’s pronounced “shh-roe-din-jur”, not “shh-ray-ding-er”. Yes this is wrong, but it’s become a habit and now I can’t stop.
****Rejected slogan idea: Density Church. In mass
times divided by volume we trust.