Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Frank Schaeffer Attacks Michele Bachmann's Christian Apostolic Movement & The Media MIA on Religious Right Fanaticism

As Adele Stan argues in her article at Truthout : Why the Mainstream Media Are Clueless About the Religious Right by: Adele M. Stan, AlterNet | News Analysis August 18, 2011
From the attitudes shown by media toward the religious right, you'd never know that more than one-quarter of the U.S. population identify as evangelicals,
according to a 2007 survey by the Pew Forum on Religion and Public Life, and among white self-identified evangelicals, 62 percent told Pew in 2006 that they believe the Bible to be the literal word of God.

These, by and large, are the people who determine the outcome of the Republican presidential primary, thanks to the early stacking of states heavily populated by evangelicals, and the propensity of most evangelicals to align with the Republican Party.

And yet, we who cover these races often know very little about the voters whose person-on-the-street interviews they're recording, except to know that these people are very different from us in their view of the world. So as everyday doctrines come to light in one or another campaign incident, the media either find themselves aghast at the implications, or simply choose to ignore them.

John Benefiel: Homosexuality A Plot By Illuminati For Population Control

Uploaded by  on Jul 12, 2011John Benefiel, an endorser of Gov. Rick Perry's "The Response" prayer rally, says homosexuality is plot by the Illuminati to limit the size of the global population.

As Adele Stan and others have pointed especially in the last couple of weeks since Rick Perry's gathering of radical Christian Right leaders at what he called The Response it becomes obvious that once again the American mainstream Media doesn't understand and is fairly ignorant about Religious Right Movements such as Dominionist ' Peter C. Wagner's newly rebranded The New Apostolic Reformation which includes the doctrine of The Seven Mountains Prophecy.

As previously mentioned on DemocracyNow! Rick Perry's name for the event was a calculated nod to Lou Engle's The Call .

What may also be occurring on the part of the media is more of what Bill Maher would call being far too concerned about being politically correct rather than investigating these groups which back certain candidates or to which the candidates belong. But then again the Media is not surprised or bothered when a religious test is administered to each candidate. Since when di it become the law that only Christians can be legislators or be President. Remember that moment everyone who believes in God raise your hand or George W. Bush My favorite philosopher is Jesus.

The media either denies the importance and impact of these Radical Religious Right movements on the GOP and American society and culture and its governance.

What once was considered on the fringes forty years or so ago has become closer to the Mainstream .

Right wing conspiracy theories first touted by the radical Birchers who were forced out of the Republican Party in the 1960s and those conspiracy theories promulgated by Religious Right notables and leaders such as Francis Schaeffer , Pat Robertson , Reverend Jerry Falwell et al in the 1970s til the present have slowly leeched into the Mainstream of the Republican Party and so is reflected by its hyper-patriotism that is America as a nation in essence founded by God. The Republican Party's base wraps itself in the Flag while carrying the Cross and thereby rationalizes its anti-liberalism and its rejection of those attitudes which they believe to be the basis of modernity ("Secual Humanism") such as tolerance, pluralism, multiculturalism, cultural diversity , basic rights and freedoms, equality for all or notions such as Social Justice .

To those not convinced by the Radical Religious Right and their Radical Political Right enablers or co-conspirators their views appear antiquated and under the rubric of anti-intellectualism,the Politics of fear, hate and paranoia, authoritarianism and the politics of resentment blended with a big helping of conspiratorial thinking .

In essence they can be labeled as being racist, sexist, Islamophobic, Homophobic, and at times they just sound like old fashioned white supremacists and members of the KKK or Christian Identity movement . As David Neiwert in his book The Eliminationists argues that such extremist rhetoric on the part of the Radical Right is used to demonize and dehumanize those whom they see as the ENEMY and in the end they will want not just to defeat this enemy but have them excluded from having any influence on society denying them rights as citizens

But even after all this if the right continues its extremist rhetoric and continues to promulgate its Conspiracy theories in order to assuage their unfounded fear and paranoia and their incessant search for scapegoats eventually the situation for the so-called enemy might get much worse and even deadly first by segregating the targeted groups from the rest of society .

The more radical or at least more outspoken members of the Radical Religious and Political Right argue in favor of incarcerating for instance homosexuals by making their actions as criminal  ie sodomy laws etc. and as a threat to society in general.

In considering other targeted groups the religious right argues in favor of deportation of millions of Hispanics , Mexicans, Muslims etc. They have been told by likes of the racist fear-monger Lou Dobbs , Glenn Beck, Michele Bachmann, Rick Perry, Sarah Palin et al that the immigrants legal or not from Mexico are a threat to traditional (read : white) America they bring disease and crime . But you might think that they wouldn't be so harsh since at the very least most Hispanics are devoutly Christian but this fact is ignored by the Merchants of Hate.

This may seem far fetched but some anti-Muslims or Islamophobes such as Pam Geller, Ann coulter, Robert Spencer, Andrew McCarthy John Hagee, Rush limbaugh, Michael Savage, Pat Robertson et al have suggested the US government should either incarcerate and segregate all Muslims in America or have them deported without exception since Muslims they contend act as a fifth column in the US secretly plotting to take control of America in the name of Islam.

Ex-Evangelical Frank Schaeffer Denounces Michele Bachmann & Calls Her Movement Anti-American

Dr. Francis Schaeffer who was Frank Schaeffer's father was one of the most inflential Christian philosophers and theologians of the latter part of the twentieth Century.
Dr. Francis Schaeffer has also been characterized and rightly so as being one of the main founders or creators of what became the Religious Right in the 1980's til the present time.
Frank Schaeffer has over the years raised questions and doubts about what his father would have said about where this movement has gone would he be pleased or possibly revolted by the rhetoric, teachings and actions of the members of the Religious Right which he spawned.

According to their official history of their movement these religious leaders primarily Protestant Evangelicals and Catholics and others ostensibly united to fight against the right to abortion as it had been made legal in the Supreme Court decision in the case of Roe v Wade 1973 and were emboldened by their defeat of the ERA: the Equal Rights Amendment and later on they kept adding more issues to widen their base .

Since the 1970s the Religious Right has continued to grow in numbers and in its ultimate impact on politics and culture in America.
So currently in the US we have the spectacle of the most radical religious right leaders running for the presidential nominee of the Republican Party in 2012 while openly courting the Religious Right's notables and Media stars though backing off at least publicly from some supporters who are characterized by the media as being extremists and fanatics.

Dr. Francis Schaeffer in the 1960s and 1970s til his death in 1984 argued that over the last couple of centuries the philosophies of "Secular Humanists " ie physical science, social sciences anthropology, sociology etc.which place man at the center of all things and as the measure of all things have become dominant in Western Culture which has led to a culture which can no longer accomodate the belief systems of "True" or "Real" Christians.

Real Christians and those of good will Francis Schaeffer argued must become committed to taking action against these anti-God atheistic humanists who characterize the world as being merely a result of materialistic scientific souless chance and therefore has no ultimate purpose beyond furthering its own existence through time and space.
In Essence Further he argues that this Scientific Materialism is the dominant view in Western Culture .

Many Christians especially those who called themselves Evangelical fundamentalists were deeply disturbed by the increasing divide between Christians and their basic beliefs and those who accepted Darwin's Theory of Evolution and other related scientific theories or who were influenced by the writings of Karl Marx or Frederick nietzche who were then embracing the notion that God is Dead and that according to anthropology and sociology and specialized studies such as Comparative Religion everything was relative.

Francis Schaeffer like his Christian predecessors argued that the belief in Relativism and scientific materialism and the belief in a man centered world finally leads to the conclusion that there are no absolute truths or values everything as it were is in flux.

No one has the right then to question the values of other cultures or of other individuals . This leads they believe to undermining the traditions, religious beliefs, and the basis for law and for culture in Western Christian civilization.

Part of what Schaeffer and others reject was the movement mainly in Germany of what is known as Higher Biblical Criticisms which examines the Bible as if it were just another ancient text such as the works of Plato or Homer to be studied and critiqued from a scholarly humanist view point.

This new breed of biblical scholars in essence deconstructed the Bible taking into consideration linguistic styles , actual historical events as opposed to the rewriting of history to suit the agenda of each particular group or individuals so various authors are thereby identified for instance writing the Book of genesis and how passages were later added or amended by various subsequent authors in som cases centuries apart. So Genesis is not the work of one author but of multiple authors who inserted verses into various parts of the Book of genesis often reflecting a possible much later held view.

According to Conservative Evangelicals all of this would either just be false or inconsequential sine all those involved in the creation of the Holy Book are being inspired and controlled by God and the Holy Spirit or even by the physical manifestations of Angels . (Islam makes the same argument for the Quran that Muhammad was given God's(Allah) commands through the Archangel Gabriel.)

Note on Evangelicals :

There are in fact millions of Americans who call themselves Evangelicals among whom there is a large and influential segment who see themselves as being the victims of a secularized anti-God antiChristian run nation.

But remember though all Evangelicals have entered into the political arena to fight the so called Culture War there are certains beliefs which all Evangelicals adhere to.
That is they believe in God and jesus, the Trinity of Father, So & Holy Ghost, that Jesus was crucified in order to bring salvation to humankind ; that he rose from the dead on the third day that he had performed miracles while teaching and was born of a virgin birth and that he was The messiah talked about in the old testament.

They further believe that the Bible is not open to a myriad of interpretations but rather is divinely inspired and that it is to be taken as the literal word of God and that it is without errors -the Bible is "the inerrant Literal Word of God "
They therefore believe the creation story in which God creates the world and the first human beings and that this event occurred some 6,000 years ago or some put the date at about 100,000 years ago and they reject the scentific view that the world or Universe as we know it came into existence over 4 billion years ago.Evangelicals reject Darwin's theory of evolution in favor of what they now call not Scientific Creationism but rather their new branding name is ID: Intelligent Design which they believe can be explained using science .
All Evangelicals believe that each convert must go through some form of mystical, supernatural, spiritual possibly mind blowing experience known as the "Born Again " experience in which one is totally transformed spiritually, mentally, psychologically and even physically that is each molecule or each atom that makes up one's body is transformed therefore in the deepest sense the person is no longer the person they were before this Earth shattering event.

also see:

* Balmer , Randall :  Thy Kingdom Come: An Evangelical's Lament; How The Religious Right Distorts The Faith And Threatens America, Pub. 2006. ( Balmer is an Evangelical Christian who in this expose reveals how the Religious Right have distorted the Bible's message and rewrite the history of Evangelicalism in America to suit their agenda of remaking America into a Christian Nation ruled according to the Old Testament laws found in Leviticus and so forth.)

* Dershowitz, Alan :       Blasphemy: How The religious Right Is Hijacking Our Declaration of Independence, Pub. 2007

* Diamond, Sara:  Roads To Dominion: Right-Wing Movements and Political Power
in The United States, Pub. 1995.

* El-Faizy, Monique: God And Country: How Evangelicals Have Become America's Mainstream, pub.2006

* Gorenfeld, John :  Bad Moon Rising;  How Reverend Moon Created The Washington Times, Seduced The Religious Right , and Built An American Kingdom, Pub. 2008.

* Hedges, Chris : American Fascists , pub. 2007

* Lipset, Seymour Martin and Raab, Earl: The Politics Of Unreason: Right-Wing Extremism in America, 1790-1970, Pub. 1970.

* Moulitsas, Markos  (founder of Daily Kos) : American Taliban: how War, Sex, Sin, and Power Bind Jihadists and the Radical Right, Pub. 2010.

* Neiwert, David :   The Eliminationists: How Hate Talk Radicalized the American Right, Pub. 2009.

* Philips, Kevin:       American Theocracy , pub.2006.

* Posner, Sarah :  God's Profits: Faith, Fraud, and the Republican Crusade for Values Voters, Pub. 2008.

* Sells, Michael :   The Bridge Betrayed: Religion and Genocide in Bosnia , Pub. 1998.

* Sharlet, Jeff: The Family ,pub. 2008. (AKA C STREET , Doug Coe's Christian cult for politicians and the rich and powerful who are told they are God's chosen ones -organization hosts The prayer Breakfast annually in Washington attended by America's political leaders and other notables  )

* Williams, Daniel K.  : God's Own Party; The Making of the Christian Right, Pub. 2010.

* Wilson, john K. : The Most Dangerous Man In America: Rush Limbaugh's Assault on Reason, Pub. 2011.

* Wolraich, Michael  :     BS Blowing Smoke *** Why the Right Keeps Serving Up Whack-Job Fantasies About the Plot  To Euthanize Grandma, Outlaw Christmas, And Turn Junior into a Raging Homosexual, Pub. 2010- (Despite the overwrought title it is an excellent book on the Religious Right and the Conservative movement in the US over the last 60 years or so. A good introduction to the various issues which are of concern to the Right. And does a decent job showing the evolution of the Republican party as it descends into a party for the Extreme Right and away from traditional American conservatism.)


and so it goes,

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