[ by Charles Cameron — comparative contemporary crucifixions, an ugly, ugly business whenever, wherever and by whomsoever… ]
I don’t suppose MEMRI — which is after all, as its name suggests. focused on the Middle East — will be taking note of the recent crucifixion in Michoacan, Mexico, but any ZP readers who saw my recent post about the crucifixion MEMRI documented in Yemen (upper panel) might find the following from a “technical note” at SWJ about the Michoacan crucifixion of a rapist (lower panel) illuminating:
It would have been more expedient to simply hang Martinez Cruz by a rope over the traffic sign but instead the time and effort was taken to symbolically crucify him. This act, along with the accompanying narco message, the way in which the alleged rapist was forcibly taken from police custody, the severing of the male genitalia, and the fact that the incident took place in Michoacán all provide a “contextual basis” which suggests that elements of either La Familia or Los Caballeros Templarios (the Knights Templars) splinter group/successor are involved with this abduction and subsequent torture-killing. Both groups in the past have carried out public humiliations and torture-killings against those they deem as undesirables and threats to civil society. Viewing themselves as protectors of the citizenry of Michoacán, both groups, which expose cult-like Christian beliefs, would thus likely view such a symbolic crucifixion as indicative of god’s judgment on a sinner. If this interpretation is accurate, then this barbaric incident would represent another small escalation in radicalized Christian cult-like behaviors emerging in Michoacán.
Robert Bunker, with whom followers of the blog will be familiar, wrote this piece for SWJ and has added this in a striking addendum:
A recent precedent for the threat of Christians crucifying others in Mexico exists. In September 2011, seventy evangelical protestants were forced to flee from the village of San Rafael Tlanalapan, about 45 miles West of Mexico City, after being threatened with lynching and crucifixion if they remained in the village. The instigator of the threat was Father Ascensión González Solís, the local parish priest, who was subsequently forced to retire.
Religious sanction can at times elicit violence from the merely pious…
The religiosity of the extremely violent is itself liable to be extremely violent…