The Bishop and the Butterfly: Murder, Politics, and the End of the Jazz Age
    Ramona's picture

    "Onward, Christian Soldiers". Not just a hymn anymore.

    I guess you've heard that the Rightward so-called Christians have a flag, yes, a flag, and some of them think it would be cool to fly it above the American flag on the same pole, even though flag etiquette has said forever that no flag should fly above Old Glory.  Their reasoning?  Something about God coming first, which they assume any good American should obviously recognize.


    As a citizen of these United States of America, were you as floored as I was by this?  Oddly, or maybe strangely, I didn't even know Christians had a flag.  (Apparently, it's been around since 1897.  I must have missed that part. I know for a fact, though, that it has never before been used as a protest flag to be flown, Heaven forfend, above the American flag.)

    Something is happening. These people who claim to be operating as Christians are scaring the hell out of me.  Somehow our inexorable move into the 21st Century changed everything and the Christian Right is not satisfied with being nice and kind and following the Ten Commandments or the Golden Rule or following the words of their Lord Jesus Christ, who said, and I quote:

    But when you pray, go into your room and shut the door and pray to your Father who is in secret. And your Father who sees in secret will reward you. 

     Or, as the King James version sayeth it:

    But thou, when thou prayest, enter into thy closet, and when thou hast shut thy door, pray to thy Father which is in secret; and thy Father which seeth in secret shall reward thee openly.

    No, these new "Christians" see the quest for their version of morality as the war to end all wars.  My idea of morality may differ from theirs, but theirs is Right and mine is wrong.  If it were only a difference of interpretation, that would be one thing, but because I don't go along with their version of Playing Well Together (Or Else) I am now the enemy.

    I admit I've never thought of myself as the enemy of a Christian.  This is new for me.  Some of my best friends are Christians and I love them madly. For that reason, I've underplayed my anger at those who operate as haters under the guise of Christian love.

    No more.

    So here goes:

    The people who proudly call themselves "the Christian Right" may say they're Christians but I've known Christians and they're no Christians.  They are the worst kind of hypocrites.  The bible is a book of stories, some inspiring, some fascinating, some downright ugly.  The Christian Right uses the ugly parts as proof that God wants them to discriminate.  They argue that women have no rights, that minorities are inferior, that different kinds of love are sins worse than murder, and that liberal education is the work of the devil.  They claim religious persecution while they themselves revel in their roles as righteous persecutors.

    They've scared our political leaders into kowtowing to their sick and sorry excuses for societal morality to the point now that bills must pass the Christian test before they can move on.  Their greatest triumph is that no matter what they offer up, if they offer it up as an edict from God, thy will be done.

    Their proudest achievement is the almost total allegiance of the entire American political body to an idea that in order to govern one must be religious--preferably to the Right, but any claim to religion will do.

    They will tell you with great confidence that atheists will never win a public office.  They have finally eradicated secularism from government.

    In their minds, it's a done deal.  I would hate to think they're right.


    For most of the country this next election is going to be about economic issues.  The social and religious issues will end up on the back burners as the election develops. 

    I hope you're right.  There is no entertainment in the economic issues and you know how we Americans love our entertainment.

    trkingmomoe is the indefatigable optimist at dagblog. That's not meant as a criticism.  I suppose I'm the pessimist. I constantly worry about elections. I can't understand how republicans can control so many state houses, the senate and house. Back in Eisenhower's day, maybe, but now when the republicans have mostly gone crazy, I don't get it. So I never count on the democrats winning the presidency.

    Hidden racism and fear.  

    When your religion is all about fire and brimstone. You have to keep the fires burning. You also have to convince the gullible to look away from their own sins and focus on how many others are going to the pits of Hell.

    Both Mike Huckabee and Rick Santorum dodged the issue of the ties of the Confederate flag to slavery by citing State's Right. They somehow think that this technique, used by white supremacists in the past, makes their avoiding an answer look good. Do they believe that Christians should support an emblem of slavery?

    The Christian Right finds itself on the wrong side on women's rights, immigration, education, and wages. They have lost control of the issues and they are bitter. Episcopalians are open to gays. The Pope is concerned about climate change. Poor Santorum is openly questioning the man selected to bring God'.s word to the Catholics.

    Neither gentleman would recognize Jesus if he came back. They would be shouting about false prophets.

    Those two bombed out of politics and found out they could make a living in the revival tent and retreat circuit. To keep that train running they have to throw their hat in the ring every 4 years. 

    Could you quote a member of the Christian right who says that women have no rights and that minorities are inferior?

    Can you quote a member of the Christian Right who says that women have equal rights with men and that all minorities should be embraced as brothers and sisters?

    I don't think I have to. Ramona made an assertion about what the Christian right is saying; she is obliged to back it up. I haven't made an assertion about what the Christian right is saying(I don't really know what they are saying). By the way, she didn't accuse them of saying that women don't have equal rights; she holds that they say women have NO rights.

    Your challenge is fair. You surely don't have to answer mine.

    It is difficult to answer your challenge. I could link to Pat Buchanan quotes I guess. But the real action is in the coded language. The conservative Christian Right is not an ideology formatted by a nut job in prison but a culture of references that doesn't say out loud all that it thinks, and has not been doing that for quite a while now.

    My knowledge of that culture is not through any great familiarity with the people who pander to it but through experiences spent with people who believe what they believe. And they are convinced that there is a form of life hell bent on taking away theirs. 

    There is a fire there. I don't know how much it can burn.



    Since, by your authority, I'm obliged to back up a single sentence in all that I said about the "Christian Right"  (in quotes because, you know. . .), I'll say this:  When, as a body, the "Christian Right" decides to fight tooth and nail against free birth control and a woman's right to choose whether or not to carry a fetus to term I would say they have decided that women have no rights.

    I'll add that many on the Christian right believe a married women must submit to her husband even to the point of having no right to refuse sex. It wasn't until a couple of years ago the the Mormon church decided that blacks weren't inferior to whites as had been it's doctrine since it's beginning. It wasn't until about 1980 that Mormons lifted it's ban on black priests.

    I mostly agree with you though the statement was slightly exaggerated.

    Yeah, it was.

    I don't know but somehow this seems relevant, one Christian who had a good epiphany about what it really means to be a Christian.






    People of the books will always pick and choose when they are forced to, when they lose. I'm sure if gay marriage wins decisively most Christians will eventually come to some accommodation with that reality. As one who does not follow any of the books I don't know what form that accommodation will take. Perhaps that accommodation will be an acceptance of homosexuality as a sin like adultery, wrong but forgivable, not overly stressed.

    Or they may decide, as they did with slavery or witch burning, to totally ignore those parts of the book discussing it with out every admitting that those parts of the book were wrong. I wouldn't even be surprised to see in a hundred years christians pointing at some christian group today that accepts homosexuality, as evidence that it was they, the christians, that brought about gay marriage as their christian duty. Just as after millennia of supporting and justifying slavery with their book they point to some christian abolitionists at the end and claim to be the ones that ended it.

    As one who looks in from the outside one can only hope most Christians can quickly come up with a story that convinces them that  this new reality was actually the way god really wanted it all along.

    I'm not Christian, but everyone has their own paradigm. Rev. Martin Luther King, Jr was as his title indicates a Christian revered. I know a person with a doctorate in physics and somehow believes the world was created 6,000 years ago. Stalin was not particularly religious, but he slaughtered millions of his own people. I was one lived next door in a tri-plex to a Catholic nun who spent most of her time in Central America assisting the oppressed without pushing her own religious views on them. 

    All people look for and embrace some channel(s) to the truth to inform their paradigm. Christians are no different. They happen to be the dominant ones in this country.

    As an ordained officer in the church, I want you to know the far right scares me as well.

    I believe that for every drop of rain that falls...

    A flower grows?


    Love and peace and brotherhood (I guess nowadays Sisterhood) but drop the hoods for chrissakes!

    Except those who disallow my Savior (5/7 of humanity)



    Boy this flower blows. hahhaha

    I dunno

    How about this to cheer us all up?

    the end



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