See the first word? I. For some reason, Jill Porter thinks that the Ashley Smith story should have been told in a manner that makes her comfortable; that the story of how Ms. Smith talked murderer Brian Nichols into giving himself up to police custody should be subject to Porter's whims and sensibilities.
Instead, [Ms. Smith’s tale of heroism has] become a testimonial for an evangelical Christian book and an endorsement of the theology embraced in the book - and that leaves me feeling alienated from what should be an inspiring tale of human transcendence.(Emphasis mine.)
That’s just too bad, Ms. Porter. Ashley Smith spends eight hours with a murderer-alleged rapist, prevents further bloodshed, comes away unharmed and possibly converts Nichols and all you can write about is your “alienation?”
Perhaps Smith's saint-like serenity was based in her evangelical Christianity. Perhaps her courage was derived from the message in the book.Why oh why does it matter how many "profoundly religious people" you or anyone else knows? This story isn’t about you.
I'm in awe of her spiritual and emotional resources, whatever their source. And that she used them to spare Atlanta from any more carnage is remarkable.
But I know many profoundly religious people who could never have responded the way Smith did when Brian Nichols put a gun in her side and tied her up.
Let's face it, another murderer might have scoffed at her appeals, laughed at her religiosity. Shall we glorify Nichols for his receptiveness?
And if, as some disciples of the book have said, God used Smith to reach Nichols, exactly where was God earlier in the day when he slaughtered four innocent people?
If, if, if. When you read stuff like this, you can tell who reads the Bible every now and who hasn't cracked it open since Sunday School. Explicitly, it says that misfortune will fall on the just and the unjust alike.
And, sorry, Ms. Porter, that Ms. Smith didn’t orchestrate her ordeal so that your discomfort with Christianity wouldn’t be pricked. Ms. Smith is just sooo selfish.
Ashley Smith has given us a true heroic model to contemplate, while fake cultural "heroes" like Michael Jackson and Mark McGwire decompensate in front of our eyes.My dad says that some who are blind to miracles are willfully so. To give credit to Jesus Christ for a miracle like that of a nearly a week ago would nearly kill them. So it is that a person like this Jill Porter only looks at this story in terms of herself and her own beliefs. Porter must find any excuse to diminish the fact that Ashley Smith seems to have exorcised whatever demons possessed Brian Nichols using words like “I was his sister and he was my brother in Christ.” Couldn’t have been the work of God. Anything but that.
But the universality of Smith's appeal is being compromised by the religious propaganda that seems to infuse the story more and more.
The truth is, there could be any number of reasons why Nichols responded so remarkably to Smith.