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OpEdNews Op Eds    H3'ed 8/4/11

God is a Weapon

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Image: The God Weapon by Lakota Phillips

"Be fruitful and multiply; fill the earth and subdue it; have dominion over the fish of the sea, over the birds of the air, and ov er every living thing that moves on the earth" (Gen. 1:28)
In Washington today and for the past 30 plus years, the Christian Right has marched to the sounds of thumping Bibles, fighting to cast America back into the Dark Ages of thought and action.  They time and time again, claim they represent Christian morality and are striving for the restoration of our Country to a Christian Nation but they have, by their actions against "the least of them", revealed themselves as the very Pharisees and Sadducees Jesus was said to have warned his disciples against as acting within the Church for their own means rather that those of the people.

In recent weeks and unfortunately, for the foreseeable future, we have had to and will have to suffer through the campaign rhetoric of religious revivalism from the Christian Right's servants.  The constant talk of " going back to relying on God ", "getting back to our Christian roots" as well as listening to "Him" for guidance and the need of miracles has come to represent the typical, sickening behavior of those who would call themselves Christians to propel not only an agenda for theirs and their financier's own financial and political gains but one which is even more sinister in nature: Dominionism and its followers who desire the propagation of its devious agenda to cast us all back into the Dark Ages of thought and archaic servitude.  

Many politicians have taken to using the Bible and the People's faith in God as a tool in their speeches and campaign rhetoric to further foment the age old, tried and true methods of manipulation and control through God.  We hear it almost daily, these sermons of our would-be-saviors playing off the fears of the people.  They are using this tool to convince Americans that all Muslims are evil, immigrants are the cause of our job crisis and of how the founding fathers meant for our Nation to be Christian even though the Constitution clearly says otherwise

What is worse than this charade of neo-Christian ideology to label the Nation of Islam as a terrorist populated, extremist culture is how these deceivers have also been pushing an agenda of anti-feminism, anti-immigration and anti-socialism which translates into anti-American agendas.  This folly represents a fear based march of ignorance generated by the Christian Right to scare Americans into supporting the U.S.'s own acts of terrorism across the globe and cast women back to the days of June Clever, homosexuals back into their closets and people of non-white culture back to the days of Jim Crowe and out of this country.

Paraphrasing the site, Let Us Reason; Dominion does not mean the church or government is meant to rule over humans or nations. "This wanting to rule over other people (dominion) is from man's fallen nature. God made man to serve just as Jesus gave us the example as a perfect man- He came to serve."  Much like the tactics we see through the media outlets and their selection of "facts" to control the thoughts of the people; this radical, extremist wing of Christianity and their political servants propelling it have only taken some parts of the Bible to speak about in order to further their agenda. 

The Lies of God Speak
If one is a Christian; a true Christian, one adopts the teachings of Christ as words to live by and to act upon each and every day of one's life in all actions undertaken and statements made.  If one is a true Christian, one takes into one's heart all other people of this life and treats them as one would want be treated.  If one is a true Christian, one becomes the Word and to this effect, takes even the meekest of this world into one's care if they so need it.  The basic principles of Christianity are to care for one's fellow man and in the bigger picture, treat even the least in humanity with respect and compassion.  Why then, are these basic tenets being so quickly abandoned by so many who adamantly and even at times, viciously call themselves, "Christians"?

The "Holy Bible", that literary anathema  which has captivated the minds, bodies and souls of millions of people wanting meaning in this life and has been the driving force behind some of the greatest slaughters of innocents in the History of Mankind, has been time and time again used as a weapon and has unleashed upon the population some of the greatest betrayals out of the deepest recesses of man's mind that could ever be conceived through standard social pretenses.  It is a given that some of the messages of this book are pure of heart and meaning but the greater whole of it and they who have used it in the past and are currently doing so to command and control the people today, has become an icon of ignorance and through those who misuse it, condones faith based war, cultural bigotry and societal deception.

Using God to control the people is a behavior which has been seen throughout the history of mankind.  In many cases, God has been used as a weapon to create fear in the people toward mass support of immoral actions.  Such tactics were used during the Dark Ages to fuel the fires of the Christian-Islam battles of the Crusades; the Salem Witch trials which were steeped in Christian ideology mixed with fear based butchery and now, more of the same is fueling a new battle centered on that same evil of man in the demonization of anyone whose beliefs differ in any way from their own. 

This modern use though, or rather, abuse of the people's faith and the irrepressible drive toward a closed minded, sheep filled society that is using the Bible to restructure and redefine our current social beliefs and to quash any awareness of deception from our leaders the people may have, stems from the very real, very frightening growth of extremism within the recesses of the Christian darkness of thought of Dominionism. 

On Revcom.com, this movement is explained as such
"Dominionism  is a doctrine which demands the total remaking of society to conform with the laws of the Old Testament of the Bible.  (sic)It states that the second coming of Jesus Christ will never occur until "God's kingdom" is established on earth and reigns for either a thousand years or an unknown time period.  They contend that all  of the laws of the Old Testament, unless specifically revoked later in the Bible, are still valid and they want to literally replace the U.S. Constitution and legal system with the Ten Commandments and the Mosaic laws of the Bible.  

If you have read Bob Avakian's writings on religion, or the Revolution series "God the Original Fascist," you know what this would mean:
If you don't follow  the Christian faith, or if you ever leave it (we're talking millions of people in the U.S. alone) you'd be punished by death. Same thing for anyone who commits theft, who blasphemes (says "goddamn it"), or who commits heresy (says god does not exist). Frederick Clarkson, who wrote the book  Eternal Hostilities: The Struggle Between Theocracy and Democracy, points out that "anyone responsible for abortion" (meaning women and abortion providers) would be given the death penalty as well."

The current Republican Party and the Tea Party especially, is being swallowed by this approach to the radicalization of Christianity.  The author cited above goes on to say:
Dominionism, like many fundamentalist denominations of Christianity, holds that every word  in the Bible is the literal, unerring word of god. But unlike more "typical" Christian fundamentalism, it opposes the idea that Christians should stay out of politics, and explicitly mandates that they work to bring about a theocracy. Dominionism calls for Christians to take literally Genesis 1:26: "... let man have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over the cattle, and over all the earth, and over every creeping thing that creepeth upon the earth."

D. James Kennedy sums up their calling:
"As the vice-regents of God, we are to bring His truth and His will to bear on every sphere of our world and our society. We are to exercise godly dominion and influence over our neighborhoods, our schools, our government ... our entertainment media, our news media, our scientific endeavors -- in short, over every aspect and institution of human society."

It is quite easy to see this fundamental back step into ignorance through Islam phobic movements, through mass media's manipulation of facts and in the speeches and actions of the political side condemning abortion rights, homosexuality, and any other "Liberal" thoughts and behaviors are labeled as evil through bias Biblical "interpretation".  Most of these people have emerged from the Tea Party movement and the Republican Party but some do hide among the ranks of Liberals waiting for weakness to open the minds of Americans to deceit. The following are examples of this emergence:

In a recent speech on the state of the economy, Texas Governor Rick Perry stated --God, You're going to have to fix this."   In this same speech, or shall I be so bold as to say, this recent self-glorification, he said that "his political office is "a pulpit' that "God has put me in this place at this time to do His will.'".  Really?  Did God ask him to cut $10 billion from public education with 80,000 new students joining that system every year?  Did God come to him and direct him to title social programs as liabilities?  As a scheme, Perry said, "Social Security, Medicaid and Medicare collectively, are $106 trillion of debt because of unfunded liabilities ."  So that's what the elderly, sick and infirmed are now: Liabilities?

Similarly, former Governor Mike Huckabee in his campaign for president had proclaimed that "God wants him to do well".  He sincerely believes in some demented and greatly misguided way that God is on his side so the people should elect him to serve his new Christian Nation.  Former President, George W. Bush believed he was on a mission from God.  Like an acid trip from hell while watching a black and white television version of the Blues Brothers, George W. Bush was on a mission from God.

Ron Suskind was so kind as to state the following of W's philosophy: ''This is why George W. Bush is so clear-eyed about Al Qaeda and the Islamic fundamentalist enemy. He believes you have to kill them all. They can't be persuaded; that they're extremists, driven by a dark vision. He understands them, because he's just like them. . . ."  Like them in a way of extremism but in the case of this American born Christian hypocrite and as Suskind goes on to so rightly say, "you can't run the world on faith."  With the present debacle in Washington and across this nation at the State level, it is apparent you can't run a country on it, either.

Governor Rick Scott of Florida, during his inauguration ceremonies, told the audience: "Jesus Christ has been with me all my life."  As Scott Maxwell said all too well, "as I look through Scott's budget -- which slashes funding to everyone from the sick and the disabled to the poor and the homeless -- I can't help but wonder whether Scott truly believes his budget cares for those whom Jesus described "the least among you."  Scott claims to be serving a Christian God but in his State, people are being arrested for feeding the homeless.

In a question about religion and government, Representative Michelle Bachmann used a theme that is currently popular with the dominionist movement.  She stated that "Americans' rights come from God, not from government".  Glenn Beck, Rush Limbaugh, Newt Gingrich; to name a few, all echoed this sentiment as well as did the thousands of their faithful sheep during the 2010 midterm elections.  "America stands with Israel" Bachman went on to say, is the reality of American Government policy because the dominionists accept the Law of Moses as an integral part of the Bible to be followed faithfully without question. 

It is fascinating how these people have vehemently condemned Islam's Sharia Law for its archaic approach to the treatment of the Muslim faithful but are pushing for Christians to return to the archaic Law of Moses where a man is allowed to humiliate his wife just because he is suspicious of her faithfulness. Women cannot "bring their husbands before priests" just on suspicion of infidelity but a man can.  Again, these people seem to be very limited in their understanding of what the Bible actually says.

This contradiction in the trend of neo-conservative holy rollers can be seen throughout the governmental policies and philosophies of our Dominionist leaders.  Social programs and what they claim are "entitlements" are being eliminated while condoning corporate entitlements.  Across America people are going without.  The number hungry and homeless are growing exponentially but these people not only want to ignore it, they seem to choose to add to it by cutting social assistance.  Cities under Rule of these same people like St. Petersburg, Tampa and Orlando in Florida are instituting Laws to restrict the homeless from being on the streets or rather, in sight.  It is the only way they can continue to preach of God and Jesus and not be seen for the hypocrites they truly are.

I seem to recall a little statement Jesus made when referring to the Least of our society as recorded in Matthew, 25:35-41 .

For I was hungry and you gave me something to eat, I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink, I was a stranger and you invited me in, I needed clothes and you clothed me, I was sick and you looked after me, I was in prison and you came to visit me.'

 "Then the righteous will answer him, "Lord, when did we see you hungry and feed you, or thirsty and give you something to drink? When did we see you a stranger and invite you in, or needing clothes and clothe you? When did we see you sick or in prison and go to visit you?

 "The King will reply, "Truly I tell you, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did for me.'

In The End
"What does all this mean?" you may be asking yourself.  Quite simply stated; cuts to Public Media, Planned Parenthood, medicare, Medicaid, social security, environmental protections, social protections and their support of the Patriot Act, National Security Act and the growing police state to keep us all in line are proof positive that they intend nothing less than total Dominionism over "every living thing that moves on the earth".

When a child cries into the night for protection, do we not tell them to believe then at times, that if we as parents are not there that God will be the one to rescue them? To give them hope?  With our words we salve the pains of fear and brainwash our children into thinking this type of faith is real.  When they have children of their own, they give to them the same beliefs, ad infinitum.  The desire to be saved for our fears is deeply entwined within our cultural fabric.  Most look to God for answers especially in this, the darkest economic hour we are experiencing as a Nation since the Great Depression, but it has served upon the people devastating affects of desperate blindness to the reality of its implications.  We are being told by some of our leaders that we will somehow be saved through them by God if we only believe in the promises these self-labeled prophets speak of and by proxy, salvation will come when we elect them into office.  

These people speak of God as their inspiration but are marching in columns of brainwashed sycophantic soldiers toward the xenophobic, anti-Liberal, ignorance invoking dominionism.  This movement stands against freedom of speech because the only thought people should have lay within the Bible, alone.  One cannot help but to think the current crisis in America is meant to subdue the People, to make them more vulnerable to this God speak and more willing to listen to the poisoned message from these Christian extremists.

I pray on many different days for a solution to solve our modern problems and save our people.  I often direct these prayers to a God that I truly believe cares for us but when I hear these politicians speak of missions from God to justify favoritism for the rich while depriving the poor of education, health care and a chance of survival in the form of living wages or support when work hath gone, or when supporting the continued export of our future to cheaper labor sources abroad, it makes me physically ill. 

These people; these lost souls infected with the disease of Biblical misinterpretation, know no bounds to their pursuit to force us back into the dark ages.  To them, God is a weapon; one which they use daily against all of us through media hypnosis and false political rhetoric.  Unless We the People come to realize the very real danger of the insanity of Dominionism growing like a virus within our Government, is slowly infecting our very reason, the War in the Middle East will be the least of our worries.
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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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