By now we have all read about the travails of the Carnival Triumph cruise ship. We have seen the photographs of the passangers bunking on the deck, and even of the buckets of human waste in stairwells. Talk about an experience that reminds one of the tales of the Flying Dutchman, except with a much better ending!
However, this morning Father Orthoduck was listening to the local Clear Channel station on the way to work. He needs to emphasize that because there is such a tendency nowadays to immediately charge bias unless one has listened to the “correct” and “approved” news source. Any news that does not come from those approved sources must be tainted and biased. Father Orthoduck gets somewhat tired of that attitude.
So, let Father Orthoduck emphasize again that he was listening to a station “approved” for what he is about to relate next. The host to which he was listening to on the morning drive news show is an overt Christian. He has interviewed his pastor on air and is a supporter of Christianity. Father Orthoduck mentions that because the host was talking live to a reporter in “Lower Alabama” about the Carnival Triumph cruise ship which docked late last night/early this morning. You would have to live here in Alabama to understand the terminology of “Lower Alabama” (or LA for short)!
As part of the reportage, the host asked the reporter about the attitude of the passangers. The reporter commented on interviewing various people and how they were very glad to get off of the ship, but they did not seem to be irate. Rather, they spoke of filthy and unsanitary conditions, but also about the cooperation that existed, and about the way that the staff of the ship tried to do their best to work with the passangers. But the host wanted to press some more. So, he asked, but was anyone irate about the conditions.
Father Orthoduck’s heart dropped when the reporter said that he had met only one person who appeared to be irate and complained at length about the Captain. He complained that he had never seen the Captain during the entire experience and that the Captain had never walked the decks, and that the Captain had never pressed the flesh with those suffering through such traumatic conditions. So, who was this person who was irate and complained bitterly? — a pastor from Texas.
Yes, on a Clear Channel station, with hundreds of people listening, it is a pastor who is mentioned as the only complaining irate person that the reporter met. Even the host of the station went on to defend the Captain, commenting that with a listing ship, no electricity, etc., that he was probably too busy at the bridge overseeing the emergency repairs, communications, etc., to simply go wandering around the deck. He further commented that, given the exemplary behavior of the staff, that it was obvious that the Captain had set the tone.
What a very sad testimony on the station of a radio network that is actually friendly toward theologically conservative Christians in the USA. Father Orthoduck is sure that there will be plenty of others who will complain once they wind down from the experience. But, sadly, it is too late. That pastor has gone a long way toward confirming a negative image of Christians, one that is all too prevalent in the USA. Of course, given that pastor’s behavior, maybe the image is not as much of a stereotype as Father Orthoduck and others would like to believe.