Soldier decapitated/Man shoots self in church

There have been two tragedies in the news lately.

Yesterday, a British soldier was attacked in London in broad daylight, hacked to death with machetes, and beheaded. The attackers say it was in retaliation for British military actions in the Middle East.

The day before, a French historian shot himself by the altar in Notre Dame cathedral in Paris. He left no note, but his last blog post strongly implies that it was a gesture of protest against France’s passing of marriage equality.

I can’t say for certain what any of these men’s motives were, but this, it increasingly seems, is what faith inevitably leads to. Not Islam, not Christianity. Faith: unfounded belief that tells you that wrong is right and right is wrong. Acts of this degree seem to go beyond orthopraxy, ritual, and way of life. When you believe that you can kill another human being and be rewarded in an imaginary paradise for it, or when you believe that other humans being granted the same legal rights as you makes the world a place you can’t live in, you’ve lost all claim to being human. You’re now a creature of faith. I hope it was worth it.

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