Friday, June 30, 2006

Fundamentalist Treason

Now I know why I feel sick to my stomach whenever I hear radical right wing religionists claim that the founding fathers wanted us to live in a Christian Republic. Beyond the fact that it simply isn't true (many of the founders were in fact deists), the claim that we should be a Christian Republic is nothing short of a cry for the overthrow of the United States government in favor of an ultra-fundamentalist theocracy.
-----Consider the following remark. Tell me if it isn't revealing, or for that matter, seditious.
-----"Christians have an obligation, a mandate, a commission, a holy responsibility, to reclaim the land for Jesus Christ--to have dominion in the civil structures, just as every other aspect of life and godliness. But it is dominion that we are after. Not just a voice. It is dominion that we are after. Not just influence. It is dominion that we are after. Not just equal time. It is dominion that we are after.
-----"World conquest. That's what Christ has commissioned us to accomplish. We must win the world with the power of the Gospel. And we must never settle for anything else. If Jesus Christ is indeed the Lord as the Bible says and if our commission is to bring the land into subjection to his Lordship, as the Bible says, then all our activities, all our witnessing, all our preaching,* all our craftsmanship, all our stewardship, and all our political action will aim at nothing short of that sacred purpose. Thus Christian politics has as its principle interest the conquest of the land--of men, families, institutions, bureaucracies, courts, and governments for the Kingdom of Christ. It is time to reinstitute the authority of God's word as supreme over all judgments, over all legislation, over all declarations, constitutions, and confederations."
-----That extended quote from George Grant's The Changing of the Guard: Biblical Principles for Political Action (Dominion Press 1987) appears in Chapter 1 of FUBAR: America's Right Wing Nightmare by Sam Seder and Stephen Sherrill (Harper Collins 2006). and I have to say that it opened my eyes. This is nothing less than sedition. It is a call for the undermining--or the actual overthrow of the united States government. And the last I knew that was treason.
-----Despite what the ultra fundamentalist right may claim, the Constitution is our governing document:
-----"This Constitution and the laws of the United States which shall be made in pursuance thereof; and all treaties made shakk be the supreme law of the land; and the judges in everystate shall be bound thereby, any thing in the Constitution or laws of any State to the contrary not withstanding. The Senators and Representatives before-mentioned and the members of the several State Legislatures and all executive and judicial officers, both of the United States anmd of the several States, shall be bound by an oath of affirmation to support this Constitution; but no religious test shal ever be required as a qualification to any office or public trust under the United States." (Sections 2 and 3 of Article VI of the United States Constitution.)
-----Now let's go back to the opening quote by Mr. Grant, who specifically says that the ultimate goal is imposition of God's will (or rather his interpretation of God's will)) on the entire world. He specifically says that the goal of the ultra-fundamentalist right is the undermining of the Constitution, legislation, and courts. Or, if you will, Mister Grant, and those who believe as he believes, are advocating the overthrow of the United States government, in essence declaring a war from within on the same, and the last I knew that was treason. So what does the Constitution say about treason?
-----"Treason against the United States shall consist only in levying against them or in adhering to their enemies, giving them aid and comfort. No person shall be convicted of treason unless on the testimony of two witnesses to the same overt act or on confession in a court." (From Article III of the Constitution.)
-----When someone announces that they are striving to undermine the work of Benjamin Franklin, Thomas Paine, and Alexander Hamilton so that they can impose a very rigid interpretation of the Holy Bible as the official law of the land, that is in effect calling for a religious war, a crusade against the United States and its Constitution. Maybe it's me, but it seems to me that a secular constitution which protects the rights of everyone--Christians, non-Christians, and nonbelievers alike, is a lot gentler and a lot kinder than a return to the bad old days of the17th Century Puritans who hung witches, whipped Baptists, and flogged Quakers. Maybe it's me, but I really think that the Founding Fathers of the late 18th Century had a better ideas about liberty and tolerance than the homicidal, theocratic authors of Leviticus, who imposed the death penalty for everything from adultery to mouthing off at your parents. And yet we have people out there who really do believe that the dirty and hateful parts of the Holy Bible are a better guide for good government than the United States Constitution and the writings of the Constitutional framers. There really are people out there who think that the sexually repressive Puritans were the real American Founders and that we are supposed to live in a repressive, Calvinistic theocracy in which Puritan Divines will interpret the word of God for everyone, Christian and non-Christian alike.
-----Of course, you may be thinking something like: "Tthat couldn't happen. The fundamentalists don't have that much power, they couldn't possibly overthrow the republic." To which i would say: "Do yah wanna bet?"
----In the near future the Republican-dominated Senate will introduce "values" legislation, which, among other things, will include measures that will forbid the Supreme Court from ruling on cases concerning the word God in the Pledge of Allegiance, and will forbid the payment of lawyers who argue Church-State Separation cases involving public displays of the Ten Commandments. What does this mean? This means that the Christian American Taliban and its theocratic, Republican puppets are attempting to undermine the system of checks and balances under which we all live by imposing limits on what courts and can rule and on the types of cases for which lawyers can charge and correct. Far from being a another volley in the Cultural War, is an opening shot in the American Taliban's attempt to overthrow the United States government.
-----And the irony in all of this is that their treason is being presented in terms of American, indeed Christian values. Christian values my Aunt Minnie. These traitors stopped being Christians long ago. Oh, they know how to mouth words like Christ, and Jesus, and Savior, but when they want to impose their beliefs on others, when they want to eradicate democracy in the name of their lunatic-fringe beliefs they go right for the dirty, violent, hate-filled passages of the Old Testament. And they do the same thing on the few occasions when they actually bother to quote the New Testament. They dig out the passages which support their oppressive agenda and conveniently overlook the four gospels where Christ delivered a message pf love, joy, peace, charity, forgiveness, and overall compassion. In short, they cherrypick throughout the entire Bible, looking for passages that are hurtful and repressive. Or, if you prefer, they have obsessed over the name of the messenger but conveniently ignored the message. Indeed, when you think about it, they have already overthrown Christianity in the name of theo fascism, and now they want more. They now want to spread their malignant, pseudo Christian beliefs nationwide in a vicious, anti-American attempt to sabotage the work of our Founding Fathers.
-----No matter what you call them--ultra fundamentalists, radical right wing Christians, theo fascists, the American Talbian, Christianists, etc---the fact of the matter is that they have betrayed the teaching of Jesus Christ and they have already made a mockery out of Christianity. And I will be damned if these Bible-thumping quislings are going to overthrow my country. If living in a Constitutional Republic (where civil liberties are guaranteed to everyone regardless of their religious beliefs) isn't good enough for them, then I would suggest that these Bible thumping fascists move to a tropical desert isle where they can practice their phony brand of Christianity without revealing themselves to the outside world as the miserable, reactionary dictators that they really are.


BEAST said...

I thought the founding fathers were freemasonaries..........

Anonymous said...

You will burn in hell

Enlightenment said...

How can you go to a place that doesn't exist?

glenda said...

Is anonymous for real?
nice site, just emailed biblebelted, too.
Want to invite anyone who is intersted to write a post for Peace on July 4th.
Deails on top2 posts at my site. All are invited to join in!

Darren said...

If what you say is true about the Founding Fathers, how do you explain that the Northwest Ordinance alloted land in each town for a church, and actually paid for missionaries? I'm just assuming here that it wasn't Buddhist missionaries they had in mind.

How can you explain away references to God in Federalist #20 (written by James Madison and Alexander Hamilton), Federalist #38 (Madison), and Federalist #43 (Madison)? How about references to religion in Federalist #10 (Madison), #52 (Madison), #57 (Madison), and #69 (Hamilton)?

How do you explain away that they created a chaplain--a Christian one at that--in the House of Representatives, a position that remains in place today?

Jefferson himself, while not at all fond of clergy, was a very religious man and had much to say on the topic.

Even Wikipedia references that Jefferson, if in fact a deist, was a *Christian* deist:
He was a Christian deist because he saw Christianity as the highest expression of natural religion and Jesus as an incomparably great moral teacher.

All of this is not to say that we are or should be a theocracy--far from it. The founders knew all about religious strife and separation, especially with the Puritans focused in New England, the Catholics in Maryland, and the Anglicans in Virginia. But to claim that they weren't Christians at all is just imposing *your* viewpoint on them, and it tremendously weakens your argument.

Put simply, your screeds will turn off anyone not already agreeing with you anyway.

Sarah said...

Darren, Jefferson was not a Christian. This is evident in his many writings. He took a copy of The Bible and cut out everything he didn't see fit. It's called "The Jefferson Bible." Many clergy of his day absolutely hated the man, slandering him as "un-Christian" and an "atheist." Madison was also quite bent on a separation of church and state even though he was religious. Actually, it's quite telling that religious men made a secular government based on the power of men, not God. Maybe you should take a closer look at these writings - writings that have to do with the founding of our country.

Our Constitution makes no direct reference to God - but since we are talking about documents, have you ever read the Treaty of Tripoli, which was signed by John Adams and had no debate in the Senate?

Article 11 is quite telling:

"Art. 11. As the Government of the United States of America is not, in any sense, founded on the Christian religion;"

This would never fly in the modern-day Senate. The only people rewriting history is the Christian fundamentalists on the Right for their agenda.

Darren said...

You're right about the Constitution and the direct reference to God. Interesting, though, that *every* state constitution--including the original 13--references God.

And no, the US is not "founded" on the Christian religion--but the Christian religion certainly influenced the people who wrote the Constitution.

As for reading more--I've read the Federalist Papers, the Declaration of Independence (which does mention God), the Articles of Confederation, and I read the Constitution and all its amendments annually to renew my faith in our republican form of government. What else do you suggest I read, as far as first-hand documents go?

Enlightenment said...

Then why did George Washington drive Martha to Church but no go inside the Church himself?

Why did Thomas Jefferson once wish that he could gather all the religious leaders of his time for a week long debate over belief, doctrine, and practice in the hope that they would "mutually exhaust themselves and disappear from the face of the earth forever?" Why did he say of John Calvin "it is more pardonable to be believe in no God than to blaspheme him with the attributes of Calvin?" Why did Thomas Paine write an entire book praising deism and openly questioning the legitimacy of Christianity? Why did Thomas Jefferson write his own version of the Bible in which he removed all of the supernatural elements? Why did Benjamin Franklin change religions whenever it served his political ends while maintaining a steadfast belief in Deism?

Sorry, the quotes in the previous comment are taken out of context. The fact of the matter is that America is a product of the Enlightenment. The Framers were perfectly aware of the fact that whenever Christians were given unlimited power they turned into blood thirsty butchers who were willing to kill one another over what Mark Twain would one day refer to as the "theological detail." The Founding Fathers were perfectly aware of the warfare, bloodshed, and sadism that had taken place during the English Civil war, and during the reign of the witch-hanging, Baptist-hating, Quaker-flogging Puritans. Only a fool of the first magnitude would suggest that the Founders, after studying the blood-soaked history of state sanctioned faith, would then turn around and endorse the same kind of abuse In the new American Republic.

As for Christian morality, the Puritans were about as devout and anal retentive as you could get, but examinations of their birth records indicate that up to a third of their children were sired out of wedlock. They were closet drinkers, and they loved to gamble on anything, most notably horse races. And we won't even go into the little affair that has become known as the Salem Witch Trials. The only religious freedom that they ever supported was their own at the expense of others.

Kind of like what we're getting from the American Taliban today.

Enlightenment said...

AS for Darren, what can I say. The fact that states made the MISTAKE of embracing localized theocracies in violation of the First Amendment is no excuse for creating a theo-fascist dictatorship in the name of jesus Christ.

Enlightenment said...

Analonymous is just upset because he choked on a communion wafer and the ensuing wattle with oxygen deprivaation lowered his IQ from 10 to minus 6.

Anonymous said...

It is a well established fact that Founding Fathers were born again Christians who envisioned a Christian Republic in which infidels would be hung in the public square. What better way to prove your loyalty to the Pirnce of Peace than by enforcing a bastardization of his faith at the point of a gun and hanging infidels in the public square?


Darren said...

theo-fascist dictatorship?

If we truly lived in one, you'd already have been burned at the stake. The fact that you can post what you did with no penalties should show how extreme you are in your views--and your hatred.