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America is Not a Christian Nation

By   Follow Me on Twitter     Message S. Paul Forrest       (Page 1 of 2 pages)     Permalink    (# of views)   5 comments

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"Tell me a tale", I said to my master. "Tell me of a time when man was deceived by promises of a better tomorrow that never came: A fiction of men who lie to make me feel secure within my life's insecurities. Tell me a story of false hope, Master: The one where I will serve you while suffering the death of my conscience and the blackening of my soul before leaving this plain. Lie to me so I may never realize the true depths of your deception."  ~ S. Forrest

Over and over again, we are told by the right wing how America is a Christian Nation: A land where family values and Christian morals need once again to exist as our Forefathers planned.  From Sarah Palin to Rick Perry, the idea that a renewal of Christian values will somehow save our Nation from the socio-economic degradation we have been experiencing, has inundated every political issue from protecting America against terrorism (Islam) to restructuring our educational system. The idea of having a moral and ethical America is quite appealing to a large number of us but upon closer examination; the policies and practices these neo-theocrats are pushing forth are anything but Christian.

We have all watched as evangelism has slowly crept into our government. Like the slow decay of rot in the roots of a great tree, the embarking upon the trail toward a theocratic system for this great Nation became solidified when George H. W. Bush announced that the evil of Islamic Radicalism must be stopped.  Even though President Bush did distinguish between Muslims and Radical Islam, many on the periphery of the mission took the rhetoric of protection against this radicalism to the next level.  Like many in the radical media realm, FOX News host Brian Kilmeade stated that all terrorists are Muslim; somehow ignoring the many white Christian terrorists that have reaped havoc in America, only exacerbated the concept of all Muslims are potential terrorists and capable of killing anyone they disagree with.

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This skewed vision of Islam has created a resurgence of hardcore faith among the more radical fringes of Christianity. In these Christian outskirts, Dominionism or Christian Reconstructionism, has surged forward into the public sector in "popular" media and upon the political stage.  From Palin to Perry, FOX News to Rush Lindbaugh, we have been inundated with anti-Islam rhetoric, quasi-Christian promises of protection against Terrorism and salvation from our current socio-economic distress if we support this new Theocratic system of governance.

"The invasion of American Democratic institutions by fundamentalist, historically militant (as in crusades, witch hunts, inquisitions, and support of slavery) Christianity has significantly increased the stench coming from the already disturbing dark side of U.S. politics. It's like a nightmarish replay of the Christian crusades--politics with a militant, convert-the-heathens dark side." 

~John Goldhammer 

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Apart from this shoring of our national borders and foreign interests, these evangelists speak of our current President as a socialist or Marxist for his continued fight to maintain Social Security, Medicare and Unemployment Insurance. They call these bedrock programs designed to help Americans in times of economic stress, social entitlements.  Some on the Republican campaign trail have painted the image that they are only given to the lazy among us but the truth is very different: These programs allow Americans to survive and fulfill their own obligations to family values.

On the platform of Presidential ambition, candidates like Newt Gingrich have lauded "family values" while having an extra-marital affair. He has also stated that child labor laws are stupid, Barack Obama is the food stamp President and has compared unemployment insurance to welfare. Not be out done, Herman Cain criticized Occupy Wall Street protesters by saying, "Don't blame Wall Street. Don't blame the big banks. If you don't have a job and you're not rich, blame yourself". The 2012 field Presidential hopefuls sound more like the Pharisees in these anti-social statements than Disciples of Christ.

As we leave the worst recession since the 30's, Republicans en masse have taken to the task of demonizing our current President for being responsible for our economic and social problems. The rhetoric of blame has expanded to such a degree it seems that reason has been all but abandoned. True our current President has not done what he promised to do nor has he abated our economic woes but what his hopeful successors have purposely failed to acknowledge is how their predecessor, George W. Bush had a far greater role in the erosion of our National economy.  More poignantly, candidate Michelle Bachman has stated, people who don't work shouldn't eat.  With these comments and promises to undo "entitlements", they are pushing to embrace a system of governance that is the very antithesis of Christian values.

Using religion as a weapon against the Democratic party, Liberals and those who do not believe America is exceptional in any way given its lack of a Christian approach toward other nations and religions, the Right has taken our President's once Muslim history and used it to create a fear factory against his desire to serve our Nation.  Attacks on his citizenship, his politics and even his Christianity in Jeremy Wright's congregation have become the staple of the right wing's ideological hate machine.  What about the war's in the Middle East begun by the previous republican President and his minions who lied to us all about WMDs or the record number of immigrants allowed into this country under his administration?  What about an economy brought on by lack of oversight and insider trading which had gone lax under him? What about the loss of so many civil rights taken away by the propaganda machine of an anti-Islamic agenda? The right never brings these truths up but rather, continues to give half truths and exaggerated statistics so as to demonize not only Obama but those who once believed in the American Dream now living through a financial nightmare.

For those true Christians out there, we can look at Matthew, Chapter 25 as a reminder of what Christ stood for:

{{35For I was hungry and you gave me food, I was thirsty and you gave me drink, a stranger and you welcomed me,36naked and you clothed me, ill and you cared for me, in prison and you visited me.'37Then the righteous will answer him and say, "Lord, when did we see you hungry and feed you, or thirsty and give you drink?38When did we see you a stranger and welcome you, or naked and clothe you?39When did we see you ill or in prison, and visit you?'40 And the king will say to them in reply, "Amen, I say to you, whatever you did for one of these least brothers of mine, you did unto me.'}}

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So by this example of Christian values, what the neo-conservative Christians do unto the least of us, they do unto Him.  Maybe they are reading a different Bible than other Christians have read.

Passing laws against gay marriage and abortion, disallowing convicted felons to vote; essentially eliminating their democratic rights guaranteed by the Constitution, and condemning Islam as an evil religion, these Christian Reconstructionists (or is it Deconstructionists?) are taking from us our very governmental structure.  By saying our Founding Mothers and Fathers were Christian, rather hoping that We the People are not educated enough to know better, they are driving an agenda that this author cannot see as anything other than the same blinding control over our lives as the Church once had over our ancestors; pre-immigration.  Ironically, this same system being set up here where a Theocracy controls the people is the same type of system our Forefathers (particularly the pilgrims and Quakers) came here to escape.

There is no doubt that our forefathers had Christian backgrounds. God is more than once mentioned in our founding papers but our Nation was established with the idea of freedom from persecution for non-popular speech, freedom of assembly, press and religion.  The Constitution is quite explicit in its condemnation of a National religion.  It is frightening how quickly our aspiring representatives wish to detract from this self-evident truth in order to take us back to the age of Theocratic Rule in lieu of the secular vision that our founders had for this Nation.

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Steven Forrest is a Project Architect living in St. Petersburg, Florida. Currently, he is working to implement Green Building initiatives in several communities across Florida. Given the current situation in America and the continued (more...)
 

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