Springfield Victory Mission

This isn't a post about something that made my weepy. This is about something that made me furious. I was watching the very touching Monday night (12/8/08) Late Late Show with Craig Ferguson on my computer via my Dish Network DVR. Craig's mother passed away the prior week, and he was eulogizing her on his first show back from attending her funeral in Scotland.

I was weepy through much of that. Both my parents are still alive, but I do understand loss and it's very easy to empathize.

Toward the end of the show, though, I was skipping through the commercials and I happened across a local commercial for "Springfield Victory Mission" in Springfield Missouri. The commercial showed a man very solemnly stating that he'd had a difficult life, but that Springfield Victory Mission had helped him turn his life around. That's great, as far as it goes, but the infuriating part was that the end of the commercial had a narrator saying the tag line; "
Springfield Victory Mission... eliminating poverty from the inside out."

My jaw dropped. I couldn't help myself. I jumped up from my chair, fists clenched, and roared at my computer screen, "Oh, FUCK YOU!" I was floored that they would say something so horrible and insidious. There's a lot of injustice in the world, and a lot to make me angry, but I'm not the type who typically yells at their TV. This made me completely lose control, though. The insinuation that religion (or the lack thereof) determines whether some kid goes to bed hungry, or even has a bed to sleep in, for that matter, is just evil. The idea that people earn poverty by choosing (or having been indoctrinated with) the wrong beliefs is simply vile. And its subtle hinting that poverty is a result of internal lack rather than external forces - especially forces that might be completely out of a person's control - is beyond wrong.

So a great big, "Up yours!" for Springfield Victory Mission. Whatever good work you've done by helping those in need you've undone with your insinuations that, until they drank your kool-aid, it was really what they deserved.