After traveling to see family on Easter Sunday, I finally managed to find a few moments to read some emails and had to logon through Google. What a surprise. I usually don’t pay too much attention to their doodles; to me they’re nothing more than window dressing. Sunday was different.
Google Doodle misfire
As many have probably heard by now, Google chose to sport a picture of Cesar Chavez on Easter Sunday. Unfortunately, many are confusing Cesar Chavez, the founder of the United Farm Workers Union, with Hugo Chavez, the Venezuelan Socialist leader. Although both men have passed, Hugo’s legacy remains fresh in the minds of many Americans. He is perhaps most famous for calling President George W. Bush the devil before the UN General Assembly in 2006. He is also known for praising Fidel Castro as his mentor with whom he formed an alliance. While he thought capitalism and all its supporters to be demonic he stated that Cuba was a revolutionary democracy. It is no wonder that Americans who clicked onto Google on Easter Sunday reacted viscerally to Google’s doodle of Chavez, whom they confused with Hugo.
It doesn’t matter who it is
The Cesar Chavez Google Doodle. Graphic by Google.com, from the Google Doodle Museum
Confusion aside, Google’s choice still reveals quite a bit about their philosophies. The internet giant is known not to have posted doodles for any religious holiday since 1998, but on Easter Sunday, the holiest of all holidays in the Christian faith, they chose to break policy. They could have easily posted a more secular doodle of anything associated with the holiday – like an Easter bunny or Easter eggs. Instead they chose to honor a man. A doodle of any human being on this particular day would have been insulting. It places the human above the superhuman and was most likely intended to subtly diminish the holiday. Whatever Google’s intentions, it was insulting to those of us who regard Easter Sunday as the basis of our Christian faith. Without the resurrection of Christ, he would have been nothing more than a madman and not a prophet as some believe. Christ clearly made it known that He was the Son of God, a point that led to his crucifixion, which was encouraged by the religious establishment of his day that regarded him as a heretic and worthy of death.
It is one thing not to believe in Christ. We are all free in America – free to believe whatever we chose to believe. However, in a culture that bends over backwards to be tolerant of radicals who call others infidels and worthy of execution by beheading, the continuous intolerance of those who believe in the Gospel or “Good News” is astounding. Perhaps Christians are easy targets because we don’t strap bombs to our children or behead those we disagree with, but the truth is that we have been far too tolerant for far too long.
Freedom to trade or not to trade
Like those who are free to worship differently, or choose to worship not at all, Google is free to promote whatever doctrines they prefer. I am also free to choose other Internet vehicles to host my email accounts and act as my homepage. It will be an inconvenience for me to change these things, but I prefer inconvenience to ignoring this latest stunt and pretending that insulting my Lord and Savior is okay with me. It’s not.
Those who are considering doing likewise might also be interested in knowing that legally lawyers cannot send information to clients via Google. It is considered a breach of confidentiality, since Google copies every bit of information that goes through its systems.
Today there are far and few ways we Christians can protest the assaults on our faith in civil ways. This may be a blessing in disguise. We have an opportunity presented to us that will speak loud and clear. We may be peace-loving and tolerant to a fault but we are not pushovers and idiots who don’t know when we’ve been insulted. The Kathy Lee Griffins and Google reps of this world are free to insult Christians, but this Christian is also free to patronize other venues and turn the channel when the likes of Ms. Griffin appear. I hope others embrace this opportunity as well and start using our big stick of civil protest to silence the mocks of the ungodly.