In a more disturbing-than-usual segment on Fox News Channel this morning about the recent church shooting in Sutherland Springs, Texas, host Ainsley Earhardt claimed that church was the best place to get shot, because it’s where she feels closest to God.
… We’ve been reporting this shouldn’t happen in a church, but I was downstairs talking with some people that work here that we all talk about our faith and we share the same beliefs. We were saying there’s no other place we would want to go other than church, because I’m there asking for forgiveness. I feel very close to Christ when I’m there. So I’m trying to look at some positives here and know that those people are with the Lord now and experiencing eternity and no more suffering, no more sadness anymore.
In a strange way, I understand what she means. I have this irrational fear that I may be killed in the process of making a bad decision, or some other embarrassing situation. Church is a place I go to regroup myself, settle my conscience, reflect on faith, and remember my priorities.
Of course a religious house of worship ought to be a “safe space” for its members. But the same goes for schools, concert arenas, and pretty much any public venue. People shouldn’t have to fear the possibility of getting murdered wherever they go to find themselves — or just have a good time.
Yes, it’s tragic when a mass shooting happens in a church, and yes, some people may find peace there in a way they can’t find anywhere else. But some feel that same transcendent spirit at a country music festival in Las Vegas, a rock concert at the Bataclan, or singing alone with Ariana Grande at Manchester Arena. They, too, deserve to be protected and that will only happen if legislators take meaningful actions instead of just offering thoughts and prayers.
Earhardt surely meant well, but her words are especially hollow considering that her network’s commentators actively speak out against sensible gun reform laws that could prevent tragedies like this from happening in the first place.