So I know there’s a post below on a stupid forward I received about boycotting Pepsi products because they’ve left out the “under God” phrase from the Pledge of Alligence. I initially posted it tongue-in-cheek, consoling myself that it was an extreme example of religious right ignorance back home.
Sigh. Maybe it’s not such an extreme example.
This weekend in Washington DC, there was a evangelical conference entitled: The War on Christians and the Values Voters 2006. Speakers included some of “Justice Sunday” favorites, such as Tom Delay, Phyllis Schlafly, Gary Bauer, and Alan Keyes.
In last night’s Hardball on MSNBC, Chris Matthews featured a segment titled “Is Christianity Under Siege?“– which had (the Rev.) Al Sharpton and Tony Perkins, the president of the (hyper-conservative/evangelical) Family Research Council.
I don’t know where to even begin. Watch the clip.
Some of what Perkins spewed:
- He’s upset that “religion” is under attack in America — specifically Christianity.
- He calls it a “growing hostility” and cites the injustice of the legislature of Indiana no longer being allowed to open with prayer, if they only pray to Jesus.
- He finds it of “concern” that there is no public prayer at schools, graduations, football games (all rulings of courts)
- and claims Christianity is under attack — case in point: the county of Los Angeles was “forced” to remove a cross from its city seal.
But the most enjoyable part of the segment is when Sharpton nails Perkins and the RR’s support of former House majority leader Tom Delay [who's in the midst of being investigated for several ethics and money laundering violations]. The RR is making Delay a symbol and martyr of Christianity, saying he’s “being persecuted for standing up for Jesus.”
Sharpton asks Perkins: “But I would like Tony to tell me how what Tom Delay is facing has to do with his religion, or any religion — it has nothing to do with it. … How does Jesus and embezzling funds have anything to do with each other?”
Perkins stumbles and attempts an answer, but ultimately cannot defend it. He claims that it’s partially due to Delay being evangelical and pro-life — as if THAT’S the reason why he’s being investigated for ethical violations. Riiiight.
Supposedly, Perkins just wants people to be able “to display their faith publicly.” Translated: They want a dominionist theocracy, where there’s one religion validated by the government.
Oy, and don’t even get me started on the RR’s claim of Christianity and government as a part of our “history” and “heritage” as a country — the men who founded the US government and constitution WERE NOT CHRISTIAN. If anything, the framers of the Constitution went OUT OF THEIR WAY to make sure that God and Christianity were not evoked in the setting up of our government.
Then again, when you don’t take the time to actually read the Constitution, I suppose it’s easier to make such unsubstantiated claims.
Don’t forget to go watch the clip that spurred on this rant o’ mine.