May 22, 2013

"A far-right French historian has killed himself at the altar of Notre Dame Cathedral in Paris after declaring..."

"... that more radical action was needed in opposition to same-sex marriage in France."
Dominique Venner, 78, walked into the building at 4pm and put a letter on the altar before shooting himself through the mouth, according to local media reports. Hundreds of visitors were immediately evacuated from the site, which is the most visited Catholic monument in Paris.

The motive for the suicide and the contents of the letter were not immediately clear, although Marine Le Pen, head of the far-right Front National, tweeted her "respect" for Venner and said his death was an "eminently political" gesture.
Disgusting. You can't stand on traditional Christian values and commit suicide (and desecrate an altar). That's completely incoherent. Despicable.

44 comments:

edutcher said...

Also a mortal sin if you're Catholic, but, hey, the Lefties have always used big media gestures to get their way.

How many homosexuals have peed (or worse) in St Pat's?

Sauce, goose...

Methadras said...

Disgusting. You can't stand on traditional Christian values and commit suicide (and desecrate an altar). That's completely incoherent. Despicable.

There's your true homophobe. He killed himself to get away from the gay. But hey, it's France. The land of new and unused WW2 rifles. Only dropped once of course.

X said...

I find the beheading in London much more disgusting and despicable, but that's just me.

Dust Bunny Queen said...

Insane.

And as you said. Incoherent. Committing a mortal sin and desecrating a religious site because you object to what you consider a sinful act (same sex marriage) is just .....crazy.

bagoh20 said...

"Disgusting. You can't stand on traditional Christian values and commit suicide (and desecrate an altar). That's completely incoherent. Despicable."

I agree, but since homosexuality is a sin, and the body is a temple, the same would be true of gay Christians, and Moslems, and other religions, I assume.

Lyssa said...

Dreadful. At age 78, I wonder if his mind was still quite right. I bet if you speak to those close to him, they'll say that he had been acting irrationally for a while now.

SteveR said...

If that type of issue were the true cause of his need to commit the mortal sin, its surprising he made it that long in France.

Paco Wové said...

That sure showed those stupid SSM supporters.

Mark said...

What would Jesus do?

It really shoots his side of the argument in the foot, so to speak.

I hope he enjoys his time in hell, where he believes homosexuals go. Ironic that he would send himself out in a fashion that will give him eternity with those he hated on Earth.

Balfegor said...

Re: Lyssa:

This is not exactly inconsistent with his history:

Venner, a historian and former member of the Secret Army Organisation that opposed Algerian independence in the early 1960s and waged a terror campaign against Charles de Gaulle's government.

If we discovered Bill Ayers committing dramatic suicide in protest of something or other that wouldn't exactly be shocking. It's exactly the kind of thing you'd expect of the kind of mentally unbalanced type who turns to terrorism.

fivewheels said...

Is it coherent to use religious norms to condemn the actions of someone you disagree with, when the basis of that disagreement is that you don't care about their silly religious norms?

It's a little better, because you can claim you're on the side of consistency, but only if you really don't care about what sin she's committing. One might say you can't really be disgusted based on the blasphemy of it. Why despise him?

(Note: I'm in the "don't care" camp, but I do try to be polite about it.)

ricpic said...

First the Althousian homo pushers make life unbearable for people of faith and then, when driven to despair, a person of faith commits suicide he's despicable. All exits blocked by the filthy totalitarians.

fivewheels said...

Er, that he's committing, not she.

n.n said...

Whether it is homosexual behavior, elective abortion, or suicide, each is antithetical to evolutionary fitness. In the end, he rejected the dysfunction in principle, but embraced the dysfunction in practice.

Scott M said...

If you tacitly reward a certain type of behavior...you will start getting more of that behavior.

Methadras said...

Mark said...

What would Jesus do?

It really shoots his side of the argument in the foot, so to speak.

I hope he enjoys his time in hell, where he believes homosexuals go. Ironic that he would send himself out in a fashion that will give him eternity with those he hated on Earth.


We are assuming that homosexuals and self-murderers are somehow co-mingling in hell. Just saying.

Carl said...

Balls. What "Christian values?" Maybe only the version from doe-eyed Sunday school Jesus on whom butterflies fearlessly alight and who reads Dr. Seuss stories to the little children suffered to come unto him.

But the actual "traditional" Christianity is a vigorous guerilla religion whose goal is not just to comfort the afflicted like doe-eyed Nice Jesus, but to afflict the comfortable, like Seriously Pissed Off Jesus driving the moneychangers from the temple with a whip --- OMG! Sacred ground! The Savior desecrated the altar by committing assault and battery in its vicinity!

Footsoldiers in the Army of God aren't afraid of martyrdom in His service. Your real problem may be with whether or not this fellow was in God's service. Maybe you think he was the devil's agent instead. Fair enough: make that point, then. Attack his goals. But there is nothing especially unChristian about taking extremely vigorous action to combat evil (which is what he thought he was doing). To be noted is that he harmed nobody except himself.

He certainly shocked a lot of people, but, vide supra, part of the purpose of Christianity is to shock the comfortable intellectual aristoi occasionally. No doubt Roman matrons were equally horrified when early Christians let themselves by killed by lions in the Colosseum instead of, say, complying with the law o' the land but penning a quite vigorous letter of protest to the Senate.

As for "desecrating" an altar: that's idolatry, plain and simple. The altar is just a piece of wood or stone. It is not a religious totem. Christianity doesn't do that.

Michael said...

Suicide is self-murder and a mortal sin. The historian committed himself to hell if he is indeed a conservative catholic. The church of Rome, so far as I know, has no plans to adopt SSM as a sacrament.

fivewheels said...

In a way, being solicitous of Christian views on suicide or the sanctity of a church space on behalf of SSM is concern trolling, frankly.

I think it's too bad the guy lost it and killed himself. I'm not much worried about the state of his soul. Neither, I suspect, is the professor.

edutcher said...

Balfegor said...

If we discovered Bill Ayers committing dramatic suicide in protest of something or other that wouldn't exactly be shocking.

Most, probably, would crack open a bottle of their favorite chilled beverage.

cold pizza said...

Nowhere in the article or in the wiki page on this guy does it mention his religious belief (or maybe I skimmed too fast). What make you think he's a Catholic or Christian at all? It seems to me, he was just looking for the biggest stage he could find. Out, out brief candle. Sound and fury and all that. -CP

President-Mom-Jeans said...

Despicable? Why so bigoted Ann, I thought you would be supportive of euthenasia?

The governor of Vermont certainly is.

How bigoted of your for pushing your anti suicide beliefs on this man.

Ugly

Birches said...

When politics becomes our idol, we begin to do irrational things.

http://pjmedia.com/andrewklavan/2013/05/22/how-to-lose-your-soul-while-fighting-the-good-fight/?singlepage=true

President-Mom-Jeans said...

I agree with X, the London beheading is a much more disturbing.

The guy didn't go Adam Lanza on the place, the only person he used the shotgun on was himself.

The guy is a dick for making a mess of property that is not his, which I'm sure costs money to clean blood out of.

You should be more upset at that than the fact that he went out with a statement against your beloved SSM.

You should be happy, one less opponent of gay marriage.

kathleen said...

He saw the country as bound up with a catholic identity and therefore one desecration (SSM in France) deserves another (suicide on an altar). Perhaps deranged, but not particularly "despicable."

Moose said...

Its martyrdom. Whether you want to call it that or not.

Moose said...

Its martyrdom. Whether you want to call it that or not.

Anglelyne said...

Disgusting. You can't stand on traditional Christian values and commit suicide (and desecrate an altar). That's completely incoherent. Despicable.

Whatever. Your indignant church-lady act toward all things anti-SSM is tiresome. There's a great deal that is of interest in the "rest of the story" here, and it ain't all about teh gay.

(This reaction doesn't stand on traditional Christian values and is (well, in a trivial sense) coherent, so I guess it's not despicable.)

Becon said...

I'm sure you find some rationale for this in the Old Testament when sacrifices were still fashionable.

Anglelyne said...

X: I find the beheading in London much more disgusting and despicable, but that's just me.

Yeah, but in a larger view the events are related.

wildswan said...

"Its martyrdom. Whether you want to call it that or not."

This guy probably was a "cultural" Catholic of which there are plenty in France. He would just see a cathedral as a symbol and therefore a place for a symbolic action - lay down his life for his friends, as if in battle. A real Catholic would know the action was against his religion, meaning by that that he would know that there was some other better action which he was in his power.

Palladian said...

Good riddance.

Baron Zemo said...

Don't make me laugh.

To think you care about sacrilege in a church is a crock of shit.
This was obviously a troubled and possibly demented old man who took his own life.

Call him a hypocrite if want that's fine. But don't pretend you give a shit about the Church or it's doctrines.

Your interest lie in the destruction of the Church and it's doctrines.

Geoff Matthews said...

Who said he was Christian?
More likely, he was a nationalist. Notre Dame is a symbol of France, and an atheist could understand how SSM threatens the culture.

Ann Althouse said...

"This was obviously a troubled and possibly demented old man who took his own life."

If he's demented, then it's just sad, but there's no scenario in which he has made a powerful statement by doing this act in conjunction with his fervent opposition to ssm. Either he's not responsible for his actions, lacking mental competence, or he is committing some big sins. Committing sins in not a way to bolster your statement. There's no way it makes any sense to put these actions together.

But I certainly agree that if he's out of his mind, whatever he said or did is not worth taking as meaning anything.

Baron Zemo said...

I would of course consider him demented because he killed himself. What you ambulance chasers call the good old prima face evidence right there.

You of course think he is demented because he is against same sex marriage.

There's the rub sister.

Baron Zemo said...

I do however think it is always a good thing when a Frenchman offs himself.

That's a win/win.

I just wish that that he would leave the church out of it.

I wish that the ssm mooks do the same.


Baron Zemo said...

That is to say leave the church out of it.

Petunia said...

You can't stand on traditional Christian values and be in favor of SSM, either. Just sayin'.

Besides, SSM is hardly worth dying over. Gays are maybe 2-3% of the population and not all of them (especially gay men) are going to want to get married. Plus when some of the consequences of the gay-rights movement become apparent, like the elimination of domestic partnerships, the legal requirements for divorce, and allegedly lesbian 18-year-olds being prosecuted for relationships with 14-year-olds, well...

Anglelyne said...

...but there's no scenario in which he has made a powerful statement by doing this act in conjunction with his fervent opposition to ssm.

Some people do think he "made a powerful statement", just like some people think he's a hater, a selfish narcissist, a martyr, or a crazy old coot. That last is the only one subject to any sort of objective verification. The rest are emotional reactions, and the (alas) already-existing personal scenarios in which "he made a powerful statement" are beyond the reach of Pope Ann's theologico-legal encyclicals.

Either he's not responsible for his actions, lacking mental competence, or he is committing some big sins.

You've demonstrated a remarkable incapacity to understand, even in the spirit of minimal intellectual curiosity or good-faith empathy, the other guy's opposition to ssm, and yet you're perfectly confident that he ought to regard you as an authority on every other point of his theology.

rcocean said...

Interesting that the article states (or implies) that opposition to gay marriage in France is "Far right". I'd bet that, like the USA, polls show a plurality AGAINST Gay marriage.

It'd be fun to imagine how the press would write this story if a famous Left-wing French Historian had committed suicide to protest "Homophobia". I'd suggest it'd be much more laudatory.

rcocean said...

I'm just waiting for the "Christians in favor of polygamy" movement.

Palladian said...

I think every statist social conservative should follow this brave Frenchman's example and off themselves to protest their opposition to gay people!

John Lynch said...

Blame the gay people for something they had nothing to do with- the collapse of marriage and family.

If marriage needs fixing, then fix it. Stop scapegoating.