Saturday, December 27, 2014

Old Time Revisionism—Southern Baptists Seek to Redefine Separation of Church and State | Political Research Associates

Old Time Revisionism—Southern Baptists Seek to Redefine Separation of Church and State | Political Research Associates

The War On Religion, Political Research Associates

THE WAR ON RELIGION--Pra 12-27-14, 837 words excerpted by al bratton, al's liberal blog. re-posted 12-27-14 by Al bratton ms liberal secularist. 

"Since the 1970s, conservative evangelical Christians have adopted the earlier Catholic narrative that there is a determined secularist campaign to destroy religion and replace it with “humanism.”83 Francis Schaeffer, Tim and Beverly LaHaye, Jerry Falwell, and Adrian Rogers (the leader of the Southern Baptist Convention following the conservative ‘coup’ of 1979), and many others drew on what historian Richard Hofstadter would call “paranoid” themes in right-wing American anticommunism, dislocations in traditional life brought on by post-1960s flights to the suburbs,84 and changes wrought by the civil rights, women’s, and gay liberation movements to depict an overall war on religion itself. Secularism has become the new socialism85—though in the racist way President Obama is depicted in some of this literature, it seems the themes are reunited".
"To some, this battle is literally the battle between God and Satan. Tim LaHaye, for example, demands that Christians “resist the devil and… put on the whole armor of God.”86Beverly LaHaye wrote in 1984 that secularists are “priests of religious humanism and are evangelizing our children for Satan.”87 Donald Wildmon’s outrageous tome Speechless is of the same ilk. These formulations seem unlikely to appeal to more moderate Christians, and on the contrary are likely to turn them off. Yet they have a strong appeal among evangelicals. In a 1990 survey reported by Sarah Barringer Gordon, more than 90 percent of those who self-identified as evangelicals (not just conservative evangelicals but evangelicals in general) agreed with the statement that “Christian values are under serious attack in the United States today.”88
This rhetoric, even in its extreme form, is not simply propaganda but reflects a sincere sense, justified by opinion polls, that show the country moving away from traditional religion89—that an old Christian order is waning. Rather than ascribe this trend to socioeconomic, scientific, psychological, or other factors, the Christian Right narrative9looks for an enemy: Satan, socialism, communism, liberals, the War on Christmas, secularists, Barack Hussein Obama, feminists, homosexuals, evolution, abortionists, socialists, humanists—or, best, a hodgepodge of all of the above. “Religious liberty” rhetoric is part of this narrative. Christianity is not losing its power in this narrative; someone is taking it away.
Christianity is still the dominant religion in America, but its power is changing. One recurring theme in the right-wing literature is the sense of a “coming storm,” to quote from an antimarriage equality commercial by the National Organization for Marriage.91 Like the red menace, the secularist danger is imminently looming. The metaphors are appropriately biblical: soon there will be a flood of litigation, a firestorm of controversy. Indeed, these apocalyptic pronouncements resonate closely with the millennialism that one finds in conservative evangelicalism generally and Christian Reconstructionism/pre-millennialism specifically. The “coming storm” and the End Times are not distant from one another.
The theme of the “war on religion” also intersects with the conservatives’ blend of fact and falsehood in their “religious liberty” arguments as discussed in the previous section. For instance, Roman Catholic legal theorist Thomas Berg writes that “if sexual-orientation discrimination should be treated in all respects like racial discrimination— as many gay-rights advocates argue—then the precedent of withdrawing federal tax-exempt status from all racially discriminatory charities, upheld in Bob Jones University v. United States, would call for withdrawal from all schools and social service organizations that disfavor same-sex relationships.”92 Note the elisions here: from “many gay-rights advocates argue” to a position that no court has ever taken, from withdrawing tax-exempt status to overall “withdrawal,” from a racist policy to “disfavor.” The “coming storm,” is highly unlikely to come in this way.
In describing the war on religion, conservative “religious liberty” discourse taps into the martyr narrative found in Christian history.
In more intellectual circles, the “war on religion” is attributed to a false distinction liberals supposedly make between freedom of conscience, worship, or belief on the one hand and the free exercise of religion on the other.93 According to this narrative, as described in such books as Stephen Carter’s The Culture of Disbelief, liberals misunderstand religion and are seeking to circumscribe how religion can be exercised. What Carter called the privatization of religion has now become a trope in conservative “religious liberty” discourse: that the “war on Christianity” in part results from an improper circumscription of religious liberty to simply what one believes in private, or within the church walls on Sunday, rather than what one practices in all aspects of life.94 It is this theory that allows conservative “religious liberty” advocates to insist that their employment decisions and commercial life are also the “free exercise of religion,” and to project a straw man secularist who believes that religion should only happen on Sundays. Of course, this “misconception” is not actually present in progressive thought on this subject; rather, the claim is that one’s free exercise of religion is one of many civil rights, and that it may not necessarily trample on the rights of another. read more at PRA:


Tuesday, December 23, 2014

What War on Christmas? | Rev. Dr. C. Welton Gaddy

What War on Christmas? | Rev. Dr. C. Welton Gaddy


"What War On Christmas? Rev. C. Welton Gaddy":
Gaddy Takes Wildmon To Task:

*I love Christmas. As a pastor, interacting with my congregation during the holiday season is inspiring as well as challenging. Tradition and innovation merge as different families find meaningful but different ways to celebrate commonly held truths. That is why I am troubled by a few individuals who inevitably insist that everyone understand and observe this season just as they do. These people attempt to universalize, commercialize, and impose on others their personal perspective on this deeply religious season of the heart."

*What did we think would happen? Across the years, many Christians urged governments to make Christmas a national holiday. (Note the language; a national holiday, not a spiritual holy day.) Similarly, churches welcomed partnerships with Madison Avenue marketers and Main Street merchants who then did what they do and made Christmas a season for buying, not a time for spiritual-based charity. Media grasped the potential of seasonal attention from a large audience attracted to Christmas festivities and with great success created programs on Charlie Brown, a reindeer named Rudolph, and spectaculars in music and dance."


*"Christians gave Christmas to the world and the world turned Christmas into a political football, a media event, and an unparalleled marketing enterprise. Did anyone really expect that a world of multiple religions and people with no religion would see a government holiday, a giant marketing initiative, and a media extravaganza as a holy time to be observed by all people in the same manner? Let's be reasonable."

*"I am weary of Christians who are constantly whining and writing fundraising letters of complaint because everyone is not celebrating the birth of Christ as they do. Look around. We are a multi-faith nation with the freedom to choose our own religious practices, or none at all.[...]"
*"My Jewish friends do not ask others to fast on Yom Kippur. Nor do my Muslim friends make such a request during Ramadan. I have learned to appreciate the Hindu festival of light called Diwali, even though no Hindu has asked this of me and the news media pays it no attention. I thank God that our government imposes no religious holiday on anybody, though recognizes the importance of such days for those who observe them."

Perhaps we Christians can profit from remembering that the world into which the child whose birth we celebrate was not born into a culture in which everyone stopped and celebrated his birth or mandated that all people kneel before the nativity." 

*"As a Christian, it seems to me that, in the spirit of Christmas, we Christians should be happy that so many people are experiencing joy in this season even if their thoughts and actions involve paths different from ours [...]"

 *"While we spread "good news," let's not be so arrogant as to pass judgment on practices different from our own. After all, we are not a nation with a state religion [...]"


*Surely, if we Christians are true to our principles throughout the seasons of Advent and Christmas and gain inspiration from the [values of hope, peace, joy, and love, that is enough.] What difference does it make whether someone greets us saying, "Happy holidays" or "Merry Christmas?"...

*Merry Christmas everybody! Or, Happy Holidays! Or, choose the greeting of your choice and have a great day. It's the thought that counts.--Rev. C. Welton Gaddy

I am just as happy when people make a kind gesture.
I regret that many devotees of the religion that gave us this season feel they must celebrate Christmas by attacking those who do not observe the season the same way we do. Think about it, even those who do not celebrate this season as a holy time support our right to honor the meaning it has for us. Surely, we can do as much for others.--Gaddy


When the news reminded us recently that singer Andy Williams had died a couple of years back, I got a lump in my throat. Not that I was a huge Andy Williams fan. It’s just that Andy Williams was one of the television stars that always had a Christmas special when I was a kid. Like most Americans, our family loved to watch all the Christmas specials (selecting them from our vast array of three channels), and Andy Williams was one of the best, year after year. His voice was amazing. He would always sing, “It’s the Most Wonderful Time of the Year.” What a great song.
Until recently, Christmas has always held a special place in the hearts of most Americans. Maybe it still does to some degree, but it’s hard to tell with all the political correctness sweeping our land. Many want to move us to a generic “holiday” celebration.
Many people have also succumbed to multiculturalism, which basically teaches that all cultures are morally equal, so to elevate Christmas above other religious holidays would offend other cultures. What a bunch of hogwash.
My growing up years were in the 1960s and ’70s. In addition to the Andy Williams special, our family also made it a point to enjoy “A Charlie Brown Christmas,” which debuted in 1965 and continues on network television today.
Through the lovable cartoon characters from the Peanuts series, the real reason for Christmas is presented when, at the school play rehearsal, Linus tells Charlie Brown he knows the real reason for Christmas and goes on stage in front of the spotlight and quotes from the Scriptures:
“And there were in the same country shepherds abiding in the field, keeping watch over their flock by night. And, lo, the angel of the Lord came upon them, and the glory of the Lord shone round about them: and they were sore afraid. And the angel said unto them, ‘Fear not: for, behold, I bring you tidings of great joy, which shall be to all people. For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Savior, which is Christ the Lord. And this shall be a sign unto you; Ye shall find the babe wrapped in swaddling clothes, lying in a manger.’ And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God, and saying, “Glory to God in the highest, and on earth, peace and goodwill towards men” (Luke 2: 8-14).
Then Linus looks at Charlie and says, “… and that’s what Christmas is all about, Charlie Brown.”
There’s no way a show that quoted that much Bible could ever make it on network television today if it were not already an established and much anticipated special each year like Charlie Brown. I guess they know viewers would revolt if Charlie and friends didn’t make their annual Christmas visit.
And make no mistake, it’s the Christmas gift-buying season that keeps many businesses alive. That’s why it’s refreshing when those same businesses recognize Christmas in their advertising.
Let’s keep Christmas in America and let’s keep Christ in Christmas. As Christians, we need to continue to use the Christmas season to share with the world around us the real reason for the celebration – Jesus Christ or Immanuel, which means, God with us.

Community columnist Tim Wildmon is a Lee County resident. He is president of the American Family Association, but the column represents his personal opinion unless otherwise noted. Contact him at

Friday, December 19, 2014

Bobby Jindal's Prayer Rally Materials Blame Gays & Legal Abortion For Hurricane Katrina | Right Wing Watch

Bobby Jindal's Prayer Rally Materials Blame Gays & Legal Abortion For Hurricane Katrina | Right Wing Watch

Religious Right Cheers On Vladimir Putin As Anti-LGBT Violence In Russia Surges | Right Wing Watch

Religious Right Cheers On Vladimir Putin As Anti-LGBT Violence In Russia Surges | Right Wing Watch


11 Shocking Facts About the Anti-LGBT American Family Association | Human Rights Campaign

FACT ADDED: After the AFA Headquartered its operation in Tupelo, MS an All American City it was soon being called the "Dark Side" of Tupelo, MS in line with it's bigoted activities against the LGBT Community in America.

Earlier this week the Supreme Court declined to hear cases from five states challenging the constitutionality of state bans on marriage equality.  This paved the way for those states – and maybe more in the near future – to begin allowing same-sex couples to legally marry.  In response, Bryan Fischer, the Director of Issues Analysis at the American Family Association (AFA), compared the justices’ actions to those of a previous Supreme Court decision - Dred Scott v. Sandford.  This statement is on par with many other shocking and deplorable positions taken by the organization over the years.   
AFA bills itself as being “on the front lines of America’s culture war” and “one of the largest and most effective pro-family organizations in the country.”  Take a look at 10 “pro-family” statements and stances out of AFA: 
1.     AFA’s Bryan Fischer blames the Holocaust on LGBT people, stating, “Homosexuality gave us Adolph Hitler, and homosexuals in the military gave us the Brown Shirts, the Nazi war machine and six million dead Jews.”
2.     AFA’s Fischer has called for an “Underground Railroad” to take children from gay and lesbian parents.
3.     Fischer has compared making criminalizing LGBT people with bans on murder, stealing, child molestation, delicious trans fats and prostitution.
4.     AFA says God is going to use ISIS to punish America for being tolerant of LGBT people.
5.     AFA supported the passage of Uganda’s deplorable anti-gay law, which calls for LGBT Ugandans or anyone “promoting” homosexuality to be jailed – potentially for life.
6.     AFA thinks the Boy Scouts of America would be better off drowning in the sea than allowing LGBT Scouts.
7.     AFA compares LGBT people to pedophiles and people who have sex with animals: "We should discriminate against unnatural and aberrant sexual behavior, whether pedophilia, bestiality, or homosexuality."
8.     AFA thinks fewer students will commit suicide if adults tell young people it is wrong to be LGBT and help them to “choose” to be straight – a practice that has been condemned by every major medical and mental health organization in the country.
9.     AFA thinks the NFL celebrating Michael Sam coming out as gay is the same as the NFL celebrating “a brain concussion.”
10.  AFA supports criminalizing LGBT people and, when talking about punishment, asks, "Do you put them to death, do you lock 'em up...what do you do?"
For more information on the American Family Association and their anti-LGBT advocacy, click here