All sorts of Religious Right activists are stressing the importance of prayer heading into this election and now Harry Jackson has produced a four-minute video on the need for " 40 Days of Prayer for our Nation " in which he urges Christians to pray that their local churches as well as those around the nation will "speak to us and give us direction; they need to tell us who to vote for"
Today's "pulpit" does not always consist of that gothic, walnut-carved lectern of yore. "Bishop" Harry Jackson knows that his video serves as a pulpit and today's pulpits span America through televangelist media, church websites, FOX News, and Facebook. The pulpit has grown beyond the confines of a sanctuary, but Harry Jackson would have you believe that your local pastor is the one who really knows what's good for you and will tell you how to vote.
Which would be good advice if the pastor (local or nationwide)
were free of an agenda ... and free of idiocy.
Free Of An Agenda
Much of today's pulpit (at least of the Christian Right), is not free of an agenda: whether it be abortion or same-sex marriage, women's rights or immigration, the pulpit has become the loudspeaker for such issues and clergy like Harry Jackson scoff at separation of church and state.
Homophobic pastors like Rev. Patrick Wooden ("all gay men
die in diapers"), and Charles L. Worley (put gays behind an electrified
fence) certainly have agendas worthy of any political aims. John Hagee's CUFI
(Citizens United For Israel) backs Israel against Iran - for the purposes of
Armaggedon, of course. And Pat Robertson posits that the US should "take
out" Hugo Chavez and that women should "submit" to their
Free of Idiocy
There has always been a difference between belief and truth not
make it true: reason and science help us discern what is truth and what is
fiction. Belief that flies in the face of reason and science, however, must be
considered fiction and selling fiction as truth has been a folly of man since
time immemorial: and it's called idiocy.
Perhaps the best known example of religious idiocy in America is
Cindy "Japan-is-shaped-like-a-dragon" Jacobs** In the past, Jacobs
has said that she "cured" a woman of her hysterectomy, fed 3000
people with 3 loaves of bread and raised a child from the dead. She also said
that the reason for thousands of birds falling dead from the sky in Arkansas
was because of the repeal of Don't Ask Don't Tell. Along with New Apostolic
Reformation C. Peter Wagner, Jacobs also goes around smashing Native American
artifacts and statues of Catholic saints.
Idiot America - How Stupidity Became A Virtue In The Land Of The Free by Charles P. Pierce, is perhaps the best book on how a unique kind of American stupidity developed. It features the Creation Museum, of course, with its junk science on the creation of the world, Noah's Ark, the Flood and other Biblical myths, selling them as truth.
Vote Your Conscience
Some pastors (progressive ones, mostly) may only tell you to
"vote your conscience" - meaning to vote with sincerity in what you
believe in; to the Christian Right, the PASTOR is your conscience, no matter
how unreasonable, how lunatic that pastor may be.
Looking past the pastor, looking beyond his agenda, beyond his
idiocy is not an option.