God, Bushco, Money, RFIDs? Gosh, so many choices. The question I ask is Who or what do we want to Control the rest of our lives? Will I even have a choice? I fear that the ‘choice’ will be made for us, is being made for us.
Do we keep the status quo-Bushco? At least we are aware of what they are doing. We have been rendered useless except for complaining.
Or do we allow the good Christian saviours to take a turn at the helm?
Christian evangelicals are plotting to remake America in their own image
By BOB MOSER
It’s February, and 900 of America’s staunchest Christian fundamentalists have gathered in Fort Lauderdale to look back on what they accomplished in last year’s election — and to plan what’s next. As they assemble in the vast sanctuary of Coral Ridge Presbyterian, with all fifty state flags dangling from the rafters, three stadium-size video screens flash the name of the conference: reclaiming america for christ. These are the evangelical activists behind the nation’s most effective political machine — one that brought more than 4 million new Christian voters to the polls last November, sending George W. Bush back to the White House and thirty-two new pro-lifers to Congress. But despite their unprecedented power, fundamentalists still see themselves as a persecuted minority, waging a holy war against the godless forces of secularism. To rouse themselves, they kick off the festivities with “Soldiers of the Cross, Arise,” the bloodthirstiest tune in all of Christendom: “Seize your armor, gird it on/Now the battle will be won/Soon, your enemies all slain/Crowns of glory you shall gain.”
Meet the Dominionists — biblical literalists who believe God has called them to take over the U.S. government. As the far-right wing of the evangelical movement, Dominionists are pressing an agenda that makes Newt Gingrich’s Contract With America look like the Communist Manifesto. They want to rewrite schoolbooks to reflect a Christian version of American history, pack the nation’s courts with judges who follow Old Testament law, post the Ten Commandments in every courthouse and make it a felony for gay men to have sex and women to have abortions. In Florida, when the courts ordered Terri Schiavo’s feeding tube removed, it was the Dominionists who organized round-the-clock protests and issued a fiery call for Gov. Jeb Bush to defy the law and take Schiavo into state custody. Their ultimate goal is to plant the seeds of a “faith-based” government that will endure far longer than Bush’s presidency — all the way until Jesus comes back.
“Most people hear them talk about a ‘Christian nation’ and think, ‘Well, that sounds like a good, moral thing,’ says the Rev. Mel White, who ghostwrote Jerry Falwell’s autobiography before breaking with the evangelical movement. “What they don’t know — what even most conservative Christians who voted for Bush don’t know — is that ‘Christian nation’ means something else entirely to these Dominionist leaders. This movement is no more about following the example of Christ than Bush’s Clean Water Act is about clean water.”
“Our job is to reclaim America for Christ, whatever the cost,” Kennedy says. “As the vice regents of God, we are to exercise godly dominion and influence over our neighborhoods, our schools, our government, our literature and arts, our sports arenas, our entertainment media, our news media, our scientific endeavors — in short, over every aspect and institution of human society.”
OOH-tempting alternative, huh? Do they have the power and money to win? The followers? Is religion a better choice than money?
“We’re going to turn you into an army of one,” Gary Cass, executive director of Reclaiming America, promises activists at one workshop held in Evangalism Explosion Hall. The Dominionists also attend speeches by supporters like Rep. Katherine Harris of Florida, who urges them to “win back America for God.” In their spare time, conference-goers buy books about a God-devised health program called the Maker’s Diet or meet with a financial adviser who offers a “biblically sound investment plan.”
To implement their sweeping agenda, the Dominionists are working to remake the federal courts in God’s image.
“We have a right, indeed an obligation, to govern,” says David Limbaugh, brother of Rush and author of Persecution: How Liberals Are Waging War Against Christianity. Nothing gets the Dominionists to their feet faster than ringing condemnations of judicial tyranny. “Activist judges have systematically deconstructed the Constitution,” roars Rick Scarborough, author of Mixing Church and State. “A God-free society is their goal!”
It helps that Dominionists have a direct line to the White House: The Rev. Richard Land, top lobbyist for the 16-million-member Southern Baptist Convention, enjoys a weekly conference call with top Bush advisers including Karl Rove. “We’ve got the Holy Spirit’s wind at our backs!” Land declares in an arm-waving, red-faced speech. He takes particular aim at the threat posed by John Lennon, denouncing “Imagine” as a “secular anthem” that envisions a future of “clone plantations, child sacrifice, legalized polygamy and hard-core porn.”
The one-two punch of militant activists and big money has helped make the Dominionists a force in Washington, where a growing number of congressmen owe their elections to the machine. Kennedy has also created the Center for Christian Statesmanship, which trains elected officials to “more effectively share their faith in the public arena.” Speaking to the group, House Majority Whip Tom DeLay — a winner of Kennedy’s Distinguished Christian Statesman Award — called Bush’s faith-based initiatives “a great opportunity to bring God back into the public institutions of our country.”
And we can all agree with the first line of the last snippet:
“America is under assault!” Jones thunders as his aides dash around the sanctuary snapping PR photos. “Everyone in America has the right to speak freely, except for those standing in the pulpits of our churches!” The amen chorus reaches a fever pitch. Hands fly heavenward. It’s one thing to hear such words from Dominionist leaders — but to this crowd, there’s nothing more thrilling than getting the gospel from a U.S. congressman. “You cannot have a strong nation that does not follow God,” Jones preaches, working up to a climactic, passionate plea for a biblical republic. “God, please — God, please — God, please — save America!”
I join in the agreement with the last statement also. Egads!
I am tempted to buy a gun. I hate guns, but where are the sharp shooters when you need one?