Overheard on CNN.com: Jesus on trial
April 22nd, 2011
06:31 PM ET

Overheard on CNN.com: Jesus on trial

Religion is always a talker for CNN.com readers, and with today being Good Friday, we take a look at a story on what kind of justice Jesus would get in a modern world.

A mock trial in Richmond, Virginia, sought to find out if Jesus would be sentenced to death or simply faced life behind bars with no chance for parole.

Readers had a lot of different takes on how they thought the ruling should go. Most tackled the subject matter seriously and a few made jokes. The comment of the day was a clever tangent from the main topic: "If the crown of thorns don't fit, you must acquit," said Colin in jest. Here's a helping of the best of the rest.

Jesus on trial: What would a modern jury do?

Dave said, "I'm sure Jesus would be in favor of the death penalty, carry a gun and denounce healthcare for all."

Faithless said, "In our modern world of psychiatry and medicine, Jesus would've been laughed at for being a total wack job. Just imagine the headlines, 'Man in prison claims to have changed water into wine. Man in prison claims to have walked on liquid water.' Blah blah. There are 'prophets' all over the world with 'miracles' and 'special powers' that we immediately disprove as frauds. Why are people so convinced that Jesus was legit?"

Dan said, "What a strange mock trial performed by Christians none the less. If Virginia's legal system was available to Jesus then he would not have died on the cross. He may have found another way to die for our sins however being imprisoned for life it would have taken a suicide to make it happen. How do they expect their religion to be born without Christ being put to death?"

Some said it was Christ's destiny, no matter what any jury says in any era. greg pallone wrote, "Even if the trial was today, Jesus would still be executed. This is God's plan, period."

And finally, a reader using the moniker Donald Trump asked, "I want to see Jesus' birth certificate."

Man dies after being shocked with a stun gun

Another story that got lots of attention was about a man who died after being handcuffed and shocked with a Taser stun gun, according to Orlando police. The suspect had reportedly caused a disturbance outside a movie theater near Universal Studios. Commenters debated the use of deadly and non-deadly force, and talked about the risks officers face.

A man causing a disturbance outside a movie theater near Universal Studios died Friday after being handcuffed and shocked with a Taser stun gun, Orlando police said.

CoolGayDad started a conversation when he said, "Off-duty officers, judge, jury, executioners. What if the man was mentally ill? What if the man was having a diabetic reaction? What if ... ? Did he deserve to die? Since when is acting irrational a capital offense?"

Many of the responses said people are responsible for staying out of trouble. RKen wrote in the same thread, "Being mentally ill, having a diabetic reaction, or really anything doesn't give excuse to cause trouble and violently resist arrest. I have sympathy for people in any of those situations, but if people don't know how to behave in public and abide by law then they should not be in it. This isn't to say he deserved to die, but to act like the cops should've just let him have his way is ridiculous. When people resist arrest, you use a tazer. Would you rather police officers were given permission to assault a violent person until they cooperate (which by the way, can also lead in accidental/unexpected death)?"

But LisaChristin said, "Exactly CGD. When having a diabetic reaction one can appear to be drunk, belligerent and yes irrational. They need immediate medical attention - not a stun gun. Police have made this mistake before."

heyview said, "Maybe his irrational, erratic behavior was caused by a medical problem. (I watch Dr. House.) He might have been going to die anyway, taser or no taser. No matter what, this is very sad for the man and his family. We should all send our good thoughts to those who loved him."

RSL4life said, "The off-duty cops were moonlighting as security guards and were bored. It's their word against his, and he's dead now. Who knows if this guy was really being crazy, or just didn't trust cops. I certainly don't. In most sates, you don't even have to have a college degree to be a cop, and I bet these two were not exceptions. They just wanted a chance to use one of their toys." blankman2001 replied, "Wrong. Irrational people should be away from others. Whatever away means."

Mindfulmike said, "You guys make it sound like the cops went 'heh heh, lets kill this idiot.' A man got violent, so they used a taser to get him under control. This happens MANY MANY MANY times daily around the world and an extremely small percent of people are actually injured by it. Tasers save lives and these officers did the right thing."

ceomom wrote, "I'm not in law enforcement so I won't judge, and I have to trust that most police officers are doing what they need to do to protect the public and themselves; but wasn't there a time (before tasers) when two police officers could take down one unarmed man without a real problem?" 19TIGER72 replied, "Yes there was, but today's law enforcement are too busy with other things. I'm sure while one was trying to control the man the other officer was on his smartphone, tweeting what he was doing. 'I'm here with my partner and we are bringing down a Top 10 FBI Most Wanted. Doughnut run afterwards!'"

Gaga's sorry she called Madonna comparisons 'retarded'

Lady Gaga says she's sorry she used the "R" word in comparisons of her to Madonna. Readers talked about the appropriateness of this phrasing, as well as the trappings of celebrity and the veracity of claims that Lady Gaga really does sound like Madonna.

Kate said, "'Get over it.' Hmmm ... same thing can be said for using the "N" word or the "F" word. Retarded used to be a clinical term but thanks to years of bigotry and cruelty towards those who cannot defend themselves, it has been removed from the clinical vocabulary and is now, and rightly so, considered offensive. If we are going to play this PC game then it applies to all, not just the gays and blacks."

Jeepers said, "I don't like the 'R' word and I haven't for a very long time. I like that Lady Gaga apologized. She's all about supporting people who feel like they don't fit in. So, it was a bit of a surprise to hear that she used the word in the first place. But at least she, unlike many people, realize it's an inappropriate, uncool word."

A commenter using the name Not everyone has to be role model noted, "Seriously, she's a performer. She doesn't have to watch her mouth or be a role model for your kids. Be your own kids role model and stop trying to create expectations for whoever happens to be popular. IF she wants to swear, so be it. Don't listen if you don't like it. I don't believe that special ed students or older, special needs adults are referred to as retarded. I don't believe that term is used to describe people with special needs (except incorrectly). So, if it also means 'stupid' and is used as such (and not directed at a special needs person) than what does it matter? The F-word is used in a lot of different ways."

Some said the "R" word isn't offensive. fifi said, "'Retard' has only become offensive because someone wanted to make it offensive. The word has always had the legitimate meaning of "slow". It isn't an offensive word and it describes certain mental disabilities accurately. This is no "n" word, or "f" word. I will continue to use it, just not around people who may be retarded, that.'

Other comments were about personal experiences. kel said, "As a parent of mentally retarded child it's interesting to see so many people on this forum joking about it. If your next-door neighbour was mentally retarded would you have the guts to call he/she that in front of their family. I'm sure they would think you were hilarious! Of course you have no problem doing it on the internet when you don't have to face anyone...."

Another portion of the comments talked about Lady Gaga's music. Newsflash! wrote, "All of modern pop music is recycled from a trash can discovered in John Lennon's New York apartment in January 1980. Lady Gaga is scraping the bottom of this particular barrel, so it's no surprise she ends up with a knock-off of Madonna's 'Express Yourself.' I suppose if you want something original, you might listen to Otis Redding or someone who doesn't need to wear a meat-dress to sell albums."

soundoff (513 Responses)
  1. Illuminati

    A modern jury would do nothing because the event happened when it was ordained to transpire.
    It could not have happened even 50 years earlier or 50 years later.
    GOD planned it to happen to the second for optimum effect on humanity.
    Therefore, it is a waste of time to speculate what would happen at a different historical time.
    It just would not have happened!

    April 23, 2011 at 7:22 pm | Report abuse |
  2. Daniel

    If Jesus were to be tried today,most people would condemn him as kind of a leftist upstart. He could never get a fair trial here as a lot of bloggers here prove that by their right-wing rants. He'd condemn all this warmongering and Tea Party nonsense and Both Barack Obama and Hilary Clinton would try eveything to silence him!!!

    April 23, 2011 at 7:30 pm | Report abuse |
  3. Jim Sibley

    "I'm sure Jesus would be in favor of the death penalty, carry a gun and denounce healthcare for all." What you say is nonsense as it is contradictory to everything he taught. Its his followers that have distored it. Thery forget that his teachings are in the Gospels, not the rest of the bible, new testament or old. As Ghandi said, “I like your Christ, I do not like your Christians. Your Christians are so unlike your Christ.” I say his ideas are sound if you eliminate the mystical and supernatural.

    April 23, 2011 at 7:40 pm | Report abuse |
  4. TvNYC

    I don't know anymore. Happy Easter everybody and have a good night!

    April 23, 2011 at 9:33 pm | Report abuse |
    • turnagainoutlaw

      Haha you crazy christian trolls are still on here?

      April 23, 2011 at 10:46 pm | Report abuse |
  5. turnagainoutlaw

    Jesus wasn't even a moral person, let alone a god. He was a raving lunatic who thought he was divine, just like your average street corner bum.

    April 23, 2011 at 10:51 pm | Report abuse |
    • Cesar

      Good grief turnagainoutlaw,you sound like another right-wing fanatic. You wouldn't be a Tea Partier by an chance,would you?

      April 23, 2011 at 11:31 pm | Report abuse |
  6. Joel2208

    Judging by some of the people posting here,it appears that soon it will no longer be politically correct to even be a Christian. I've seen mean-spirited people ridiculing Jesus and tearing down Christianity as well as Islam. I guess that one day,we'll be a country with an atheistic majority just like the Communists once strove to achieve in Russia.

    April 23, 2011 at 11:41 pm | Report abuse |
  7. dave

    the beatles proudly boasted once that they are more popular then Jesus yet the Church is still strong and still growing and the beatles are the hype of the past. The beatles sung about love and peace but Lennon's own son, Julian openly claimed that his dad was not what he preached. the band broke up because they could not get along. Jesus did have a trial and although He never took advantage of the position of power in taking money from people, or getting choice groupies . He was innocent and yet killed by men, people who think they are fair and just yet they were blind to the visitation of the greatest person, God the Son in the flesh. He was willing to die for wicked people , to pay the price for everyone. He arose from the dead and will come back to judge the earth. anyone who believes in Jesus will be saved from hell. so enjoy the free gift of salvation. refuse to be persuaded by men who will be judged, and many of them will be going to hell. will you trust a man or God? every person will let you down for all men are selfish, Jesus gave His life for you, this is real love from God. its your choice

    April 24, 2011 at 10:37 pm | Report abuse |
  8. Tony Solano

    Here is a profecy for you... CNN: "Soon, very soon, when at least are expected it, you will put 24 hours of news, talking about "massive disappearances" of peoples around the world.
    Will be news over news without stoping, trying looking for answers and giving peoples consolation in order to calm the masses.
    Sure!!!, you network will be one that give all those people watching scare at from of their TV set, false answers to the "massive disappearances", and you cameras will be on the streets of every cities, taking the running and the crying of people that lost families and a open and close of eyes, but you can not stop the revolt and distress that will happen in those terribles times and days. Get a note of this, and put that in you calendar, because the Bible will make sure everything happen when at least it is expected. The word of God, do not come back empty.

    April 25, 2011 at 1:03 pm | Report abuse |
  9. Tony Solano

    Why not to talk about the Jesus picture on this page,? Is a Idol, statue, and is abomination to God to make idols and pray to them.
    Do not mix, christianity with politics, because Jesus do not come down from heaven, to discuss obout things that at the end, is the way to death.
    Do not mix, one thing with another. The work of the lord, is simple and easy of understand.... : Come to him and repent of yours sins, before the hour of the lord come. The end is near... do not forget that!!!

    April 25, 2011 at 1:16 pm | Report abuse |
  10. Gaylord


    April 28, 2011 at 11:46 pm | Report abuse |
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