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mopaul Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-24-04 05:19 AM
Original message
Evangelicals: should we stop picking on them?
Edited on Sat Apr-24-04 05:21 AM by mopaul
http://www.nytimes.com/2004/04/24/opinion/24KRIS.html

this is an interesting article in the times, about how liberals perceive born again christians, and the whole christian conservative movement. the writer suggests that we liberals mistreat evengelicals and keep them at arm's length. i don't know if i agree or not.

i always like to be objective and fair in all matters, but i know from personal experience in my own family that many evengelicals are not objective and fair themselves.

and i also feel that the whole born again movement and the political wing of that movement, the christian conservatives, are a real, concrete threat to our union, as it stands.

i am one who feels that the christian conservatives ought to catch up with the rest of the world and get real. i find them all to be brinksmen, pushy, arrogant, and unwilling to argue any point that isn't their own. and i don't feel like we should have to tippy toe around arrogant and pushy people, and constantly worry about offending them with our modern language and concepts.

actually, we CAN all get along, if we will allow all to believe what they want in the spiritual sense, or otherwise, and stop trying to cram dogma down each other's throats.

i wish we could have discussions about church and state and good and evil and right and wrong without someone's religion causing them to be highly offended. and i wish we didn't have to temper our language and ideas so as not to offend over sensitive born agains.

the born agains seem freindly enough on the surface, but if they are given free reign over government policies like they are trying to accomplish now under bushco, this whole nation will become a theocracy of one religion. their's.
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displacedtexan Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-24-04 05:45 AM
Response to Original message
1. If we give them a pass, we'll end up in the stocks in Town Square.
Sorry, can't ignore them. They're too dangerous when allowed to run amok.
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Brian_Expat Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-24-04 05:48 AM
Response to Original message
2. Them first. . .
I'll stop "picking on them" when they stop trying to pass laws that discriminate against me and people like me, stop trying to deny us an opportunity to serve in public service of any sort, and stop trying to pass a constitutional amendment to discriminate against millions of GLBT Americans as a cheap political ploy to win support from uneducated people.
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mopaul Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-24-04 05:54 AM
Response to Reply #2
5. cheap ploys is right
the gay marriage issue is just the hate issue du jour, the flavor of the month for bornagains. my brother mother and father are in this group. only my father rose above the hate factor of the bornagains.
the man doesn't have any hate in him anymore, because he is a true christian.

but my brother is dangerous. he hates gays, liberals, listens to rush, and goes to the mardi gras to drag a huge cross down the street and get heckled. he's ate up with it. and i know first hand how dangerous these folks are.

a few years back, the hate issue was abortion. a few years earlier, viet nam. christians who are motivated by hate, which is bizzare in itself, will bring us all down.
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Brian_Expat Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-24-04 05:56 AM
Response to Reply #5
6. The worst thing is, they make themselves martyrs.
They drag huge banners telling people they're scum, God hates them and they deserve to die, and then get all teary at the "hate" that's directed towards them.

If I was to head to the middle of a "Christian revival" and do that sort of thing, on the other hand, I'd be evidence of a "homosexual agenda that hates Christians." If I got teary-eyed about being victimized by the evangelicals, they'd have some justification and explain how their hate really wasn't hate, but "love." Orwell would be proud.
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mopaul Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-24-04 06:01 AM
Response to Reply #6
8. they enjoy the 'we're under attack' fantasy too
pat robertson harps about it all the time, 'christianity is under attack in america', and other hysterics. poor persecuted christians.
rush limbaugh's brother is one of them, and has a new book out called, 'persecution', on this very notion.

i say bullshit. point out to me any instance of bornagains being persecuted, and i'll convert to church of the pentecost
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Brian_Expat Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-24-04 06:25 AM
Response to Reply #8
16. Oh yes, the government and the "secular libruls" are out to get them!
What a crock that is. They talk about how powerful and connected and in the government homosexuals are, and at the same time, are pushing a constitutional amendment banning our equality and are stopping gays from getting any legal protection or recognition at all.

If we were oh-so-powerful, wouldn't it be a pro-gay constitutional amendment that took rights away from fundies that would be winging its way through congress?

Oh, wait a minute, I used logic, not "faith" -- silly me.

Personally, as a person of faith who also believes in logic, I think the fundies are the people Jesus warned us about -- who would contribute to the death of society and do the Devil's work in God's name. "By their fruits, shall ye know them," He said. Ask yourself -- what are the fruits of political religious fundies in this country? Hate and suffering.
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July Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-24-04 09:27 AM
Response to Reply #8
65. Yes, they're treated unfairly because we don't read the "Left Behind"
books. That floored me. How Kristof can equate the Upanishads and the "Left Behind" series in trying to assert that the poor evangelicals don't get any respect is completely baffling to me. Hard to take him seriously after reading that.
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LeahMira Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-24-04 06:56 AM
Response to Reply #6
24. How absurd!
The worst thing is, they make themselves martyrs.

I often wonder if they aren't trying to somehow emulate Jesus by finding ways of making themselves into martyrs so they can claim they have something in common.

But when have Christians ever in this country had laws passed specifically against them? When have they ever been denied admission to any college simply because they are Christian? When have they ever been denied a job or the opportunity to buy a home of their choice simply because they are Christian? When have they been deprived of the right to vote? to hold public office? to travel freely? to eat in any restaurant they choose? to marry whomever they choose? to have as many or as few children as they want? to access health care? to express their opinions freely in the marketplace of ideas?

All of these freedoms have been denied other groups of people simply because of their skin color, their gender, their place of origin, or even their non-Christian religious beliefs. (The Catholics might have a beef because there was a time when signs read: Catholics need not apply. But only Catholics. No signs ever read: Christians need not apply.)

The worst that's come to Christians is that some people just don't like them. Well, so... Don't we all have the right to just not like anyone, so long as we don't do anything to harm them? Haven't we all encountered someone who just didn't like us? Someone with whom we just didn't "click"?

IMO, Christians are the last people in the world that have a claim to some sort of martyrdom. To claim that there's some sort of prejudice directed against your "group" simply because someone doesn't like you or that someone disagrees with you... as long as they don't do anything to harm you... is simply absurd.

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Brian_Expat Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-24-04 08:08 AM
Response to Reply #24
44. Another fave of theirs that they bring up. . .
"Homosexuality is a choice." (which is nonsense of course)

So is Christianity! And if you're as oppressed as you claim, can't you just end the problem by choosing something other than Christianity, just like you argue homosexuals should choose heterosexuality to make their lives easier?

That usually leaves them shaking and mumbling incoherently before quoting some out-of-context Bible passage. :)
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doni_georgia Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-24-04 08:14 AM
Response to Reply #6
49. You can't reach the fringe lunatics - but you can reach reasonable
Christians. The only way we can do this though is to not become like the hate-filled lunatics on the right. Believe me most Christians think these people are nuts, but they see liberals bashing these guys by painting all Christians with the same brush. We have to be careful not to do this. We have to be accepting of the validity of real Christian belief, and we have to be able to demonstrate using Christian texts how WRONG these on the right are. This is the only way to defeat these people. (see posts at the bottom)
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Brian_Expat Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-24-04 08:43 AM
Response to Reply #49
54. Well, I promise not to:
1) Advocate the passage of laws that revoke the civil rights of evangelicals;

2) Pass new laws that make evangelicals a legal subclass with fewer rights than others;

3) Fire evangelicals because they're evangelicals, or oppose their inclusion in my neighbourhood, anti-discrimination laws or civil life;

4) Boycott their funerals, churches, or other public events with hate speech on signs.

Now will they extend the same promises to me? Not on your life. Why is that?
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skooooo Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-24-04 09:29 AM
Response to Reply #2
66. I agree...


Believe anything you wish, but do not try to subvert the constitution and cry "intolerance" when you're called on it.
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necso Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-24-04 05:53 AM
Response to Original message
3. Tolerance of the intolerant
betrays and corrupts the very principle and turns a "virtue" into a "vice".

This doesn't mean that one should be mean or petty --- leave that to the fundies --- it is a natural counterpart to their hypocrisy, sanctimony and cant.
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dand Donating Member (636 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-24-04 05:54 AM
Response to Original message
4. They have the of potential,
of being our very own Taliban.
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mopaul Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-24-04 05:56 AM
Response to Reply #4
7. exactly, & this bunch in the white house have armies to back it up
domestic and foreign policies based on revelations. jeezuz!!!
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Brian_Expat Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-24-04 06:01 AM
Response to Original message
9. A quote from the article. . .
In a Tyndale Lecture in England last year, Cristina Odone complained: "The chattering classes . . . pride themselves on being tolerant. . . . Yet they share one prejudice that turns them into rabid persecutors: Christians."

OK, Cristina, please demonstrate real incidences of "persecution of Christians."

Whenever fundies make this claim, I nail them on it, and usually they come up with some sob story of a friend of a friend who was fired from his job for being a Christian. I always ask why the EEOC wasn't brought in since such actions are illegal, and he stammers.

Then I say "if I was fired from my job for being a homosexual, I'd have no recourse with the EEOC, unlike your friend's friend." At which case the fundy argues that's exactly the way it should be. Then, he turns around and continues to argue that Christians are persecuted.

At the end of the day, fundy "persecution" is defined as "everyone doesn't agree with me and I cannot impose my religious beliefs on the entire world." A corrollary is "I am oppressed when I cannot force other people to do things just because my religion says I should be." Nobody is less "persecuted" in American society than fundamentalists. Nobody.
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comsymp Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-24-04 06:04 AM
Response to Original message
10. I respect Evangelical Christians
Edited on Sat Apr-24-04 06:26 AM by comsymp
It's the Pharisees who piss me off.

Sure, their zeal can occasionally be off-putting but I have to admire their belief in the importance of "sharing the Good News."

And just like all Democrats shouldn't be linked to the idiots in FL who suggested shooting Rummy, the vast majority of EC's shouldn't be tarred with the same brush as the RWN Fundies.

ON EDIT: Molly Ivins once wrote:

Fundamentalists aren't evil; they're worried. They're afraid of modernity, worried about the family, repelled by abortion, and yearn for traditional values. All of us sinners like to see a hypocrite brought down, and sweet was the fall of Jim and Tammy Faye. And Jimmy Swaggart had done his share of hatcheting other preachers. What goes around, comes around, Brother Swaggart. But you know who his followers are? They're straight out of Let Us Now Praise Famous Men. All their lives they've suffered from poverty, isolation, no opportunity, poor diet, poor education, and the scorn of others. There was a time when progressives did not sneer at folks like that.
(MoJo 6/88, Molly Ivins Can't Say That, Can She?)

I think she's right.
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mopaul Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-24-04 06:07 AM
Response to Reply #10
12. it's a shame they make ALL christians look bad
my father is a true christian, my brother is a bornagain asshole.
and i think the liberal backlash to this 30 year old cultish group is threatening to them. but the true christians ought to bring them around.
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comsymp Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-24-04 06:18 AM
Response to Reply #12
14. Right- but as I said above
Edited on Sat Apr-24-04 06:29 AM by comsymp
we wouldn't want to be labeled according to the actions of the LW nutcases, would we? And what is your reaction to someone whose views of African Americans is based on the minuscule minority who are featured on the 6:00 news, or thinks all gays are NAMBLA members who wear assless chaps or bad drag and sexual paraphernalia, and ride on floats?
Bigotry is bigotry- I don't see a difference.
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Brian_Expat Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-24-04 06:27 AM
Response to Reply #14
17. The leftwing nutcases aren't out "leaders"
They ARE the fundies' leaders. The people they elect to congress are people like DeLay and Lott.

You MIGHT have a point if gays and liberals started sending Farrakan or Andrea Dworkin to Congress.
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comsymp Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-24-04 06:38 AM
Response to Reply #17
20. Bull
Edited on Sat Apr-24-04 06:53 AM by comsymp
"They" no more elect those rabid assholes than I, as a North Carolinian, elected Jesse Helms. Many (most?) religious conservatives vote R, true- why not, after being inundated with the message that GOP = God's Own Party? And what do they hear from Dems/Libs to counter it, besides comments like some on this thread? Hell, even the Liberal people of faith here have repeatedly objected to the stereotyping- why on God's green Earth would the Conservative ones want to climb on board!?

Just like the majority of people, "they" are willing to believe what they're told- often by People In Authority, or the guy with the biggest magaphone. You see plenty of examples of that type of uncritical acceptance in threads here as well, just usually from a different direction- Remember, something like half the homes here don't have PC's/Internet- where are these folks gonna get their info from?

And DeLay, for example, wasn't elected by the Church of God in Christ- he was elected by the Texas 22nd, with Agribusiness, Healthcare, Insurance/Financial/Real Estate PACs providing the $$ to get his "message" out. These guys are hardly church groups.

ON EDIT: and why do you imply that "leaders" have to be elected officials? Farrakhan is unquestionably a leader, but (as I indicated earlier) I wouldn't DARE suggest that he speaks for all AA men.
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Brian_Expat Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-24-04 06:52 AM
Response to Reply #20
23. Well there you go. . . you said it!
Many (most?) religious conservatives vote R, true

And most of them are the reliable foot soldiers of people like Jesse Helms.

The fact of the matter is, the vast, vast majority of fundy political resources, activism and political activity goes into anti-gay political activity, and I hold them accountable for that. Just like I hold contributing Catholics responsible for the reprehensible political activities of their church, which is funded by their donations.

like the majority of people, "they" are willing to believe what they're told

And that's not my problem.

I've tried outreach, and they don't want to touch this filthy fag's hand, which is just fine. Just don't demand tolerance and understanding as one of the largest and most politically powerful groups in America if you're not willing to give it in return.

Gays and liberals aren't busy passing laws to ban fundies, yet we're supposed to be the bigoted ones who "don't understand" them?

I don't WANT to understand someone whose sole goal is destroying me. I only want them to either go away or get delivered a stinging defeat.

The irony of the whole fundy experience is that their bigotry has actually INCREASED the tiny chance they'll get discriminated against later. As a gay man, I have to admit I would get a certain perverse satisfaction out of a "defence of secular society" law proposal that banned fundy activities as "against traditional values." It would let them live in my shoes for a while and see what REAL "persecution" is like.

Meanwhile, we could explain away all the attacks on them as "well, people just believe what they're told and it's all your fault anyway since you don't tolerate them." A grand fantasy of mine. :)
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comsymp Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-24-04 07:17 AM
Response to Reply #23
30. I'm curious about the outreach you've tried
Would love to hear more- presumably, you haven't gone door-to-door (or Church to Church) in TX22 or Biloxi. But I find the concept of DIRECT outreach/education intriguing- seriously, pls elaborate.

As a 40-yr Red State resident, my experiences with homophobia have apparently been less frequent (and intense) than yours- for which I'm grateful. Doesn't mean I've necessarily converted any rednecks to Liberalism but I *know* that they've walked away from discussions in possession of more facts than they began with, and that's a start. I'm sorry that your experience has left you unwilling to continue trying to make a positive influence on folks like these who so desperately need it. Hopefully, you'll get your second wind.

My *guess* is that many of these folks don't even know who their elected representative is, let alone his/her agenda. Can't remember the source or find a corroborating link, but there was a poll which showed some appalling percentage of Americans who couldn't even name their US rep. Many said they just choose by party affiliation. Again, back to education.

Gays and liberals aren't busy passing laws to ban fundies, yet we're supposed to be the bigoted ones who "don't understand" them?

I assume you're describing "their" mindset- sad to say that many folks, religious and non- alike, often see things in black/white. We, as Liberals/Progressives are supposed to acknowledge that there's always more than one way of looking at an issue, and usually more than two. If we're gonna claim the high road, we've gotta travel it.

"I hate you."
"I hate you, too" ain't gonna cut it.

Agreed on the irony- and I had mixed emotions (including amusement) at the recent Key West story... but, again, the irony that strikes me most strongly is that we who know firsthand about the sting of prejudice, participate in it, ourselves.
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Brian_Expat Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-24-04 07:33 AM
Response to Reply #30
34. My big experience with reaching out to fundies was. . .
. . . the civil unions election of 2000 in Vermont.

Suffice to say, after getting the hand handed back to me, severed, I'm not too interested in outreach in the future. I'm more interested in getting rights and responsibilities equalized and being left alone. If the fundies decide to continue to work against those goals, then they're going to have to deal with me! Their choice. :)
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LeahMira Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-24-04 08:14 AM
Response to Reply #14
48. True... the bizarre makes the news. But...
And what is your reaction to someone whose views of African Americans is based on the minuscule minority who are featured on the 6:00 news

The African American community distances itself from that sort of behavior and indeed many African American initiatives have been made with the intention of addressing these behaviors.

The community of people who are homosexual have time and time again distanced themselves from those who are NAMBLA members and spoken out against its agenda.

Unfortunately, any minority group has more difficulty getting word out to the public about its accomplishments and goals and is rarely asked to comment on any issue unless a specific situation of abuse has come to light.

I wonder... has the community of people who are Christian distanced itself from the fundamentalists and evangelicals? Actually, I think that statistics would show that mainstream Christian denominations are losing members to the "charismatic" and "evangelical" groups.

These "converts" may not be overtly persecuting gays a la Phelps, but they aren't speaking in defense of equal rights and respect for all people either. Their silence gives consent.
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comsymp Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-24-04 09:10 AM
Response to Reply #48
62. Agreed with many points- did a quick Google and found these examples
Edited on Sat Apr-24-04 09:19 AM by comsymp
of Christian groups distancing themselves from acts/statements of intolerance, using GLBT as a reference. I think you really nailed it when you said:
Unfortunately, any minority group has more difficulty getting word out to the public about its accomplishments and goals and is rarely asked to comment on any issue unless a specific situation of abuse has come to light. Undoubtedly, there are so many more which go unnoticed.

Forty-two members of the clergy from 13 religious traditions across Topeka met Thursday to opposed hate in the city made infamous by Fred Phelps. 03/2003

Dr. Bob Edgar, National Council of Churches General Secretary, today removed his name from "A Christian Declaration of Marriage," released in Washington, D.C., on Tuesday, expressing concern that a statement meant to support married couples is being misused to attack gays and lesbians.
http://www.ncccusa.org/news/2000GA/marriageapol.html

A resolution on the Middle East was made which condemns the escalating cycles of violence involving Israeli forces and the Palestinians. It called for all parties to immediately cease all acts of violence and the disproportionate use of force by Israeli military including helicopters, tanks and heavy weapons against civilian population in the occupied territories. It called on the NCCC to express concern and prayerful support of the Christian Churches in Jerusalem and for the self-determination of Palestinian people and the establishment of a Palestinian state.
http://www.stlukeorthodox.com/html/evangelist/2001/dele...

Many religious groups are members of SIECUS, NCSSE

Indiana Gay-friendly religous groups

The Interfaith Working Group
All of the entities listed here are on our letterhead. There are 22 organizations and 75 clergy from 17 religious traditions: American Baptist, Brethren, Christian Church (Disciples of Christ), Conservative Judaism, Episcopal, Ethical Society, Interfaith, Lutheran (ELCA), Mennonite, Moravian, Presbyterian (PCUSA), Reconstructionist Judaism, Reform Judaism, Unitarian Universalist, United Church of Christ, United Methodist and the Universal Fellowship of Metropolitan Community Churches.


I have no problem with nailing to the wall any bigot (or group of bigots) who uses his/her/its interpretation of religion as an excuse to hate. My sole objection is the use of the broad brush. There's no question that there are religious groups whose exclusive purpose is to deny (insert group here) their rights as Americans and/or as human beings. There are just as many, if not more (opinion) who actually do fight on the side of the Angels.

So I guess my questions are 1) how many exceptions does it take to disprove a generalization, and 2) how is deploring an entire group of people based on the actions of a few, not bigotry?
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FlemingsGhost Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-24-04 06:06 AM
Response to Original message
11. Do these folks have a persecution complex or what?
Jesus was a liberal.
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mopaul Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-24-04 06:13 AM
Response to Original message
13. another good article on this subject
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Lars39 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-24-04 06:18 AM
Response to Original message
15. Just a little something I'm going to keep my eye on:
<snip>
The annual meeting will feature "Kingdom Challenge" sermons by such speakers as David Jeremiah and Franklin Graham, singing by the Gaither Vocal Band, and will coincide with the release of "EKG: The Heartbeat of God," written by EKG national strategist Kenneth Hemphill. The book traces the history of God's Kingdom from biblical days through today. <snip>

http://www.sbc.net/redirect.asp?url=http://www.bpnews.n...

Given what we already know about Franklin Graham(fundy groups in Iraq), PNAC agenda, their Passion for the "Passion" and the southern baptists' "Left Behind" mindset, I think this "Kingdom" talk is pretty creepy.

http://www.sbc.net/ekg/
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cornfedyank Donating Member (642 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-24-04 06:28 AM
Response to Original message
18. the most destructive verse in the Bible is "go forth and spread the word".
if it is not the most destructive then it is the most misinterpreted. from the crusades to the spanish conquest to the current flock of "onward unchristian soldiers" their track record stinks. and i will bet, if you talk to most muslims, they feel the same about their extremists.

i wish some of these bozos would spend a little more time learning about the cultures that, never hearing about the Good Book, still manage a pretty good conception of their creator.

wage peace---------it's cheaper
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mopaul Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-24-04 06:33 AM
Response to Reply #18
19. don't forget: "thou shalt not suffer a witch to live"
that little line from the good book is responsible for about 12 million deaths of men, women, and children in europe. a holocaust that's rarely mentioned.
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cornfedyank Donating Member (642 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-24-04 07:12 AM
Response to Reply #19
29. i missed that one. do you know know the verse?
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mopaul Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-24-04 07:43 AM
Response to Reply #29
36. Exodus 22:18
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doni_georgia Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-24-04 08:32 AM
Response to Reply #18
51. "go forth and make disciples"
Is the actual wording. What is a disciple? One who walks in the footsteps of his teacher. Most Christians do not walk in the footsteps of Christ. Jesus never went out and preached hell fire and damnation. He never screamed, "REPENT OR BURN!" He loved. He showed compassion where others showed hate. Believe me, there are many Christians out there like myself that believes that following the great commission means going out and doing the work of Jesus (taking care of the poor, sick, imprisoned, showing love and compassion, being a light in a dark land)not going out and telling people to change what they believe. If Jesus is the teacher it is his words and deeds alone we are to follow. The only groups he ever bashed were religious hypocrits. When he spoke to large groups of people (not his disciples) he told stories about how to live a good life. He did not condemn people. He preached love.

Too many Christians are ignorant of other belief systems, and really ignorant of the bible. I'm not excusing them, I'm just saying it's a fact. They can't for some reason put themselves in the shoes of the person they are proselytizing. "How would they feel if someone told them that Christianity was wrong and they were gointg to burn in hell?" personally I would have to question a person who so quickly abandoned their faith for another. Unfortunately for some in the Christian community it is all a number's game.
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ClintonTyree Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-24-04 06:45 AM
Response to Original message
21. I'll let up............
when they stop trying to push religion down my throat and cease being political. They are most certainly on a crusade to reform the United States into a Theocracy.
I have no ill will toward them, they can believe anything they please as long as it doesn't interfere with other's beliefs and remain legal. They aren't content within these parameters though, and see it as their sacred duty to convert everyone to their beliefs.
As for being persecuted; they invite it, they crave it. Then they cry to the Lord (and the media) when it happens. Hypocrites, most of them are flaming hypocrites.
As I stated, I'll stop when they show some restraint as well.
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Karenina Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-24-04 10:52 AM
Response to Reply #21
79. In family matters
I simply avoid the Talibornagains. They're nuts. If there were any way to be in the same room with them and have one's boundaries respected, I would do so out of filial duty. There is not. MY faith is very intolerant of discussions that include quotations of unerring words or dinosaur bones being a devilish trick. It is complete, utter nonsense.

If anyone entertained or inspired by such, I have no brief. Do it in your space and keep it OUT of mine. Can those who find the Left hostile to this very specific segment of "believers" relate to the analogy?

One Tba family member is SO INTRUSIVE, I spare her my presence (out of love of course). She interrogates, inspects, demands "her rules" be obeyed and says the dumbest stuff I ever heard from the mouth of a highly-educated, well-paid IT professional. Hubby is even worse. He once cornered me in the laundry room demanding to know how much I smoked. I told him to go mind his own business.

"I can find out, you know!"

"What are you going to do Tom? Go through my purse and count the cigs? Be my guest."

"So tell me," he says, blocking my exit.

"TOM, MIND YOUR OWN DAMN BUSINESS AND GET OUT OF MY WAY!!!"

ooooooppppps!!! somebody said the D-word. Mrs. Tba was fit to be tied. I'd already gotten in trouble earlier referring to a tile floor under a malfunctioning a/c unit as "colder than a witch's tit in a brass brassiere..." This time I flatly REFUSED to apologise for my nassy-crassy mouth and warned of more to come if I and my children were NOT left in peace. :sigh: ALWAYS gotta get UGLY before they'll back off even a little bit...







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baldguy Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-24-04 06:46 AM
Response to Original message
22. Who's "picking" on them?
A person can believe and practice his faith in any manner he chooses. He may not impose that faith on others, however.

The central purpose of evangelism is to impose a particular kind belief system upon the country.

When they try, fair-minded people say "you can't do that" and take steps to stop them. That's the way democracy works. The evangelists reaction?


!!!STOP PICKING ON US!!!

Remember: these people have no love of democracy, they have no concept of compassion or tolerance, and - no matter what they say - they are not Christians.
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QC Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-24-04 07:02 AM
Response to Original message
25. Evangelicals and fundamentalists are not the same thing,
though the terms are used interchangeably here. Jimmy Carter is an evangelical, for example, and a good many evangelicals do vote Democratic.

Lumping all religious people in with Falwell doesn't really add anything to the discussion or make it more likely for us to attract voters to our party.
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Speed8098 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-24-04 07:07 AM
Response to Original message
26. I didn't read the article, but......
I just had to offer my $.02

Organized religion is a sham.

It's my belief that we are all born innocent. It is how you live your life that determines what happens to you in the afterlife, if there is an afterlife.

Faith in something bigger than you, in itself, is not a bad thing. To profess that your belief is somehow better than mine, is. I don't care what you believe, I do care how you treat me.

In most of my life, I have tried to treat people the way I would like to be treated.

If everyone lived by this, we would have a better society.

Where you worship, if you worship, or whom you worship is of no consequence to me.

If I treat you with respect, why should it matter what my religious beliefs are? I really don't get it.

Just my humble opinion.

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Racenut20 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-24-04 07:07 AM
Response to Original message
27. They give Christianity a bad name
Left to their own devices, they would be burning gays, blacks, and every woman who had an abortion at the stake unless they repented and accepted their version of a vindickitive God.
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DeepModem Mom Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-24-04 07:10 AM
Response to Original message
28. I oppose these peoples' hijacking of Christianity --
Kristof has harped on this issue before, and I emailed him my disagreement. In his piece, Kristof scorns those whose "intellectual curiosity" does not extend to evangelical/fundamentalist Christianity, as it might extend to Islam. I didn't grow up with Muslims, Mr. Kristof, but I grew up with this brand of Christian, in the South. My mother, a devout, church-going Methodist, called them "religious nuts." I'm now a member of a mainstream Protestant denomination, with a history of liberal views on social issues -- a brand of Christianity, in my opinion, far truer to the original than that of Pat Robertson, Jerry Falwell, Gary Bauer, John Ashcroft, and George W. Bush.
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comsymp Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-24-04 07:18 AM
Response to Reply #28
31. Hijacking
Excellent characterization, Mom~
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Brian_Expat Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-24-04 07:34 AM
Response to Reply #28
35. Amen, brother!
My religious Catholic mother scorns them as "Bible-thumping Bozos." Not for their belief, but for their insistence in shoving their religion down your throat using the law.
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DrBB Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-24-04 07:18 AM
Response to Original message
32. Oddly, "Evangelical" is not a synonym for "Fundamentalist"
I mean, it has certainly become that. But in at least some of its 19th roots, American evangelicism was a movement with a respectable intellectual pedigree, rather than a know-nothing reaction against science and modernity. Google on Phillips Brooks, for instance.

The fundies have largely assimilated that tradition. But it's important to remember these distinctions, lest they utterly succeed in their Borg-like attempt to assimilate all of Christianity to their suffocating, punitive, coercive and retrograde interpretation.

And yes, I do think Kristof is one of the biggest idiots on the left. He's always looking for these little sops, little gestures of reconciliation or something. This is Journalistic Objectivity in its most feckless and jejune form: "I'm looking at Both Sides, just like my journalism teacher told us! I get a gold star!" "Compromise" is a term for which Delay, AshKroft, and other True Believing Crisco-Annointers express only the most withering contempt. Reading Kristof, you can see why.
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mopaul Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-24-04 07:48 AM
Response to Reply #32
39. lick my decals off baby
...captain beefheart, love him.

christians always assimilate into the local flavors, they hijacked halloween and christmas, and they always jump on whatever new wave comes around. christian rock, christian bookstores, touched by an angel, etc. and they are doing that now to the u.s. government
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Name removed Donating Member (0 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-24-04 07:24 AM
Response to Original message
33. Deleted message
Message removed by moderator. Click here to review the message board rules.
 
madrchsod Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-24-04 07:44 AM
Response to Original message
37. no they are just
as bad as the fundie muslims and jews. they use the government to impose their beliefs on the rest of us. if they can`t raise their own families why the hell do they think they can raise mine..they can believe what the hell they want just stay the hell away from me..your christ and my christ don`t like each other...
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Failure Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-24-04 07:46 AM
Response to Original message
38. Whoever wants a fascist theocracy...
Should stop attacking Evangelicals.
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doni_georgia Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-24-04 07:52 AM
Response to Original message
40. How should we address the Christian right - my take as a Christian
I don't believe the majority of Christians in this country support the Christian right. My dad, who is about as conservative a republican as you get, but a liberal Presbyterian religious-wise can't even stand the religious right and throws things at the TV when Falwell or Robertson is on. I believe the majority of Christians in this country believe that religion is a very personal thing and should be completely separate from politics. Unfortunately, though, the majority of Christians in this country are also extremely ignorant when it comes to knowing history (both American and the history of their own religious tradition) and when it comes to knowing the Bible. Many Christians in this nation just take what their pastors say as the gospel. They do not question, do not check facts. They are blind sheep willingly going whereever their shepherd takes them. Many more do not even belong to a church, but instead watch countless hours of "Christian" television, and blindly follow televangelists.

Often, we on the left get frustrated with these folks and attack their beliefs. This is the wrong way to go. Fundamentalist Christians have just as much a right to their beliefs under the Constitution as an atheist, traditional protestant, or Buddhist. As liberals, we need to be inclusive. That means recognizing the validity of all belief systems. When we don't, we are as guilty as those Christians who think only their particular sect of Christianity is valid. We need to speak respectfully, and intelligently. We need to accept that they believe that the Bible is the infallible word of God, and as such we need to know what the Bible says if we are to counter their arguments. We need to have answers to their claims, and we need to back up those answers with documentation.

Often we come across just as exclusive as the right-wing Christians. When we bash Christianity we are saying that it is not a valid path. This has pushed some Christians away from the Democratic party. Many of the people I know who are conservative Christians were once Democrats, because they believed strongly in social conscience and civil rights, but they feel like the party has pushed them out. We need to be able to address the claims of the right, and when speaking to conservative Christians, we need to be able to do so using language and imagry that they accept.

First thing we have to do is stop countering the evangelicals by bashing them and their beliefs. When we do this, we do nothing but prove them right in their own eyes. We speak of tolerance and acceptance, but we run out of these qualities when dealing with our evangelical opponents. It's hard - I know. My first reaction is to throw things at them as well, but we can't do that - not if we want the truth to be heard. There are hundreds of thousands of Americans out there who identify themselves as Christians who really distrust and dislike the Christian right, but see the left as unfriendly to Christians. Let's face it - we often are. We're hypocrits a lot of the time. We have to stop demonizing Christianity. When we do so, we are no better than those on the right who demonize anyone who thinks differently than they do.
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skooooo Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-24-04 08:01 AM
Response to Reply #40
42. Interesting comment....
Edited on Sat Apr-24-04 08:01 AM by skooooo

I wouldn't say that I totally disagree with your stance, however, one thing you say in here, I think, begs further examination -- " That means recognizing the validity of all belief systems. "

Should we as liberals recognize the "validity" of all belief systems? I'm not sure. If someone is blatantly anti-democratic and espouses a by-any-means necessary philosophy of achieving their ends, do we have some responsibility to recognize that as being a "valid belief"?? Certainly, we owe no tolerance to people who kill doctors for performing abortion, but do we also owe tolerance to the group of people who promote the ideas that go behind and support such actions?
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doni_georgia Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-24-04 08:09 AM
Response to Reply #42
46. validity of religious belief
Edited on Sat Apr-24-04 08:10 AM by doni_georgia
According to the Constitution Americans have freedom of religion - specifically the government cannot establish a state religion and cannot prohibit the free exercise of religion. Of course in cases where the free-exercise of a religion would violate other tenets of the law that's a different story. If there was someone who had as a religious belief human sacrifice, that would clearly be in violation of the law. I am not talking about accepting these types of beliefs as valid. Certainly 99+% of Christians do not believe that killing abortion doctors is a valid expression of Christianity. People who break the law go to jail - period. What I am talking about here, is accepting that Christians do have a right to their religious beliefs. They have a right to believe abortion is wrong, and to peacefully protest. Just as I have a right to believe the death penalty and this war in Iraq is wrong and peacfully protest.

My point was you never see liberals bashing Buddhists, Hindus, Wiccans, Atheists, etc., but you do see us bashing Christianity. Either we truly believe in freedom of religion or we don't. Conservative Christians (and many not so conservative Christians) see the hyprocracy -- I just think it's time we acknowledged it ourselves.
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skooooo Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-24-04 09:26 AM
Response to Reply #46
64. If beliefs threaten our consitution...why must they be accepted??

The reason you don't see liberals "bashing" Buddhists, Hindus, etc. is because these groups aren't seen as trying to subvert the constitution. I believe certain Christian groups are trying to do just that. They are free to believe as they want, but they do not have the right to force their views into the public sphere in a way that infringes on other people's rights.

I stay unconvinced by your argument.
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doni_georgia Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-24-04 09:38 AM
Response to Reply #64
72. That's because you mistook my argument
I wasn't arguing for ANYONE to accept the fundamentalist lies. What I was saying, is that they are no more palatable to other Christians than they are to us. My point was that we need to not bash ALL Christians based on these lunatics. When we do so, we push away reasonable Christians.
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skooooo Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-24-04 09:50 AM
Response to Reply #72
76. Hmm...sounds very similar...

...When we ask moderate Muslims to distance themselves from the radical Muslims. Maybe this is an issue that Christians should settle amongst themselves. If you allow the fundies to establish their beliefs as the foremost face of Christianity, how else do you expect people to view Christianity in general?

You said:

"My point was you never see liberals bashing Buddhists, Hindus, Wiccans, Atheists, etc., but you do see us bashing Christianity."

My point is that the Buddhists, Hindus, Wiccans, etc. have not allowed their most radical members to shape the public persona of their religion and attack the American constitution, therefore, no one bothers to attack Buddhism, Hinduism, etc. Now, I am playing the devil's advocate (pardon the expression) a bit here -- but at what point do more "moderate" Christians have a responsiblity to make their voices heard and reign in their wayward brothers in Christ?? See my point?
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doni_georgia Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-24-04 10:14 AM
Response to Reply #76
77. I haven't ALLOWED these "Christians" to do anything either
There isn't ONE universal Christian church (despite what the Nicean creed says). Mainstream Christianity does speak out against these extremists. But we can't silence them. They are not a majority as they claim. They are a loud, hateful minority. Each denomination has its own rules of governance. Most of these right-wing extremists belong to groups outside any organized denomination. Mainstream denominations speak out against these groups all the time. It just doesn't get ANY press outside our denominations.

Here - want proof:

From the United Methodist Book of Discipline:
We affirm all persons as equally valuable in the sight of God. We therefore work toward societies in which each persons value is recognized, maintained, and strengthened. We support the basic rights of all persons to equal access to housing, education, employment, medical care, legal redress for grievances, and physical protection. We deplore acts of hate or violence against groups or persons based on race, ethnicity, gender, sexual orientation, religious affiliation, or economic status.

Comparing Falwell, et al to Islamic extremists:
"Jim Winkler, General Secretary of the United Methodist Churchs General Board of Church and Society, declared, "President Bush often reminds the American people that intolerant words of a few militant Islamic leaders are not representative of Islam. I am here to tell the American people that the comments of Rev. Falwell and others on last Sundays 60 Minutes are not representative of American Christianity." http://www.cmep.org/press/2002Oct11_ChurchLeadersChalle...

PCUSA urges congress to oppose the marriage ammendment
http://www.layman.org/layman/news/2004-news/pcusa-urges...

Church groups speak out in support of Gay Marriage
http://www.365gay.com/newscon04/04/040504massLetter.htm

United Methodists Support Hate Crimes Act
http://www.umc-gbcs.org/news/viewnews.php?newsId=230
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skooooo Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-24-04 10:17 AM
Response to Reply #77
78. Who is forming the public perception??
Edited on Sat Apr-24-04 10:18 AM by skooooo
I understand that there isn't one Christian church -- I don't need proof. I understand it very well. I'm talking about perceptions, and how the fundies are being allowed to shape the public perception of Christianity among some of us. Maybe these other groups need to become more vocal?
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shimmergal Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-24-04 12:56 PM
Response to Reply #78
85. EVERYONE needs to stop using the term Christians as
synonymous with fundamentalists. They (the fundies) have tried to hijack the word, and are often successful. Kristoff's article is a good example; he equates the two several times, and at one point specifically segues from Catholics' to fundamentalists' actions or views.

I _hate_ this message creep!

Part of the problem here with the press may well be just the "If it bleeds it leads" mentality. Falwell, Robertson et al. are always saying outrageous things, so they get press coverage. So does Randall Terry--both for his anti-abortion and anti-gay antics, and now that his own son has come out by writing an article. Real Christians helping at food pantries and battered women shelters aren't dramatic so the press ignores them.

It's notable that the only big news coverage the more mainstream churches have received in years have been 1. the Catholic church's sex abuse scandals and now, the hype about whether Kerry should be denied communion and 2. the flap over the gay bishop in the Episcopal church. Actually I think we (the Episcopalians) came out pretty well in the latter, but it's too bad it takes something "sexy" to attract press coverage at all.

Liberal Christians, let's try to take back the word! If we use it to refer just to fundamentalists, at least put it in quotes: "Christian".
Or, "so-called" is a good qualifier, just as we should always speak of "so-called pro-lifers" if we use the term at all.
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doni_georgia Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-24-04 03:44 PM
Response to Reply #85
89. Exactly
You write:
<<It's notable that the only big news coverage the more mainstream churches have received in years have been 1. the Catholic church's sex abuse scandals and now, the hype about whether Kerry should be denied communion and 2. the flap over the gay bishop in the Episcopal church. Actually I think we (the Episcopalians) came out pretty well in the latter, but it's too bad it takes something "sexy" to attract press coverage at all. >>

Mainstream Christians only make the news when there is a scandal, division in our ranks, or we are being attacked by the right (and then only the right's version is reported - remember the reimaging God Conference?).

Last time I checked we weren't silent. Liberal Christians are constantly speaking out, but you won't find our words in the corporate owned media outlets. We aren't silencing ourselves. We've been silenced by a media who is afraid of a conservative backlash.
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BiggJawn Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-24-04 09:32 AM
Response to Reply #46
67. It's not hypocrasy.
Edited on Sat Apr-24-04 09:33 AM by BiggJawn
If the Buddhists, hindus, Wiccans, etc. were trying to set up a one-religion system of Government (aka "Theocracy") like the Fundy Taliborn-agains are, I'd be just as strident about them.

Look, I don't give a shit if they make love to those rattlesnakes they think the Bible "tells" them to handle (yes, an extreme case, but they DO exist) just as long as they don't announce an agenda to make snake-handling the Law of the Land.

So, just exactly how SHOULD we react to those who want to take that clause in the Constitution you mentioned about "freedom of religion" and turn it into "freedom of the CHRISTIAN religion" (and an extremely Fundamentalist version at that)?

We should accept them? we should treat them like the peaceful non-Chrisitan religions that we don't "bash" because they aren't trying to set up a theocracy? I don't think so.

They're a cancer on this country that needs to be erradicated. and if you don't want to faced with a choice between the Cross or the Sword, you'd better stop worrying about being perceived as a hypocrit.

That's their favorite defense mechanism, because it works.
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doni_georgia Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-24-04 09:43 AM
Response to Reply #67
74. No - we should speak out against them - but not by using their tactics
That's all I was saying. I wasn't calling for validating those who believe it's okay to trash the Constitution, kill aborion doctors, murder gays etc. I was calling for more civil language when addressing Christians - recognizing there is a difference between the majority of CHristians and the fanatics on the right. We do this with Islam. We all know that the fundamentalists in Islam do not represent the majority in that religion. We need to do the same with Christianity. That was what I was trying to say. When we paint all Christians with a broad stroke of the brush, we are alienating many people who probably agree with us more than they do conservatives, but see no place for themselves in the Democratic party, simply because they are Christians.
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Brian_Expat Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-24-04 08:11 AM
Response to Reply #40
47. Interesting comment. . .
That means recognizing the validity of all belief systems.

Again, I don't think anyone but fundies and far-far lefties have a problem with this. One of the reasons fundies are so dreaded at parties and in mixed company is, they'll try to tell you you're stupid and damned and they won't accept not being in charge of a statement. If you refuse to, say, condemn Muslims or Wiccans, they'll make a big scene out of quitting the group, decrying your tolerance.

I'd say that the problem isn't with liberals tolerating other belief systems, but with fundies who demand tolerance but won't provide it themselves.
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LeahMira Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-24-04 08:38 AM
Response to Reply #40
53. Silence gives consent.
There are hundreds of thousands of Americans out there who identify themselves as Christians who really distrust and dislike the Christian right, but see the left as unfriendly to Christians. Let's face it - we often are.

You may be correct, but I don't think the left is unfriendly to the Episcopalians that have a gay bishop.

When those Christians you speak of take a public stand against the born-again variety, perhaps the left will be more friendly towards them.

Tomorrow, I plan to join the March for Women's Lives in DC. Our Hadassah group is providing T-shirts for its marchers (for a small price) that will identify us as Jewish women for choice. I wonder how many groups I'll see carrying a sign or wearing a T-shirt claiming to be i.e. Presbyterians for Choice.

Or when is the last time your minister denounced the "Rev." Phelps's group from the pulpit? Or went on some local TV station to say that "The Passion" is over the top for several reasons, not least its presentation of the Jewish people?

If there are so many Christians out there who do not support the Christian right... and I believe you that there are a lot of them... why are they so reluctant to let their voices be heard?

I'm sorry, but it is not enough to disagree with the Christian right or to not support them. Not everyone has the disposition to be a "revolutionary" of course, but the silence of the left-leaning Christians is often deafening.
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doni_georgia Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-24-04 09:32 AM
Response to Reply #53
68. Christian groups co-sponsoring March on Washington
I am a United Methodist. My denomination is pro-choice. There will be a group from the UMC marching in tomorrow's march (http://www.umc.org/interior.asp?ptid=2&mid=4166 ). In fact, the United Methodist Women's Division of Global Ministries is one of the sponsors of the march.

Other Christian groups (or eccumenical groups) co-sponsoring the march include:

Catholics for free choice
Espicopal Women's Caucus (Maryland Branch)
Episcopal Church USA
Faith in Action Coalition
First Congregationalist Church of Christ
Methodist Federation for Social Action
Prebyterian Church USA
Presbyterians Affirming Reproductive Options
Religious Coalition for Reproductive Choice
The Episcopal Women's Caucus (national)
The General Synod of the United Church of Christ
United Methodist Church General Board of Church and Society
YWCA (various groups)




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mopaul Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-24-04 07:59 AM
Response to Original message
41. same subject, different article
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mmonk Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-24-04 08:01 AM
Response to Original message
43. They are fine
as long as their religion stops at the door of religion and doesn't end up being policy for the teaching of science, foreign policy (Israel and end times), or issuing more and more morals laws that run counter to the constitution.
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Waverley_Hills_Hiker Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-24-04 08:08 AM
Response to Original message
45. when they lay off attacking gays, .and I dont mean...
..that "love the sinner hate the sin" stuff. I mean them actively opposing gay rights laws and gay marriage & stuff.
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GreenPartyVoter Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-24-04 08:23 AM
Response to Original message
50. Well, I am trying to spread the word about liberal Christians
without necessarily bashing the conservative evangelical and fundamentalist ones. (Esp since a number of my family qualify as such.) SPreading the word feels a bit weird to me, though, since one of the reasons I am a progressive Christian is that I do not my faith is the only right one and therefore should be shoved down someone else's throat. Sharing my thoughts is a hard line to walk, I can tell you.

I do tippy-toe around the conservative Bush-loving family evangelicals for the sake of peace in the home, but I do talk to others elsewhere, especially on internet forums.

Would Jesus love a liberal Christian? You bet!
http://www.geocities.com/greenpartyvoter/liberalchristi...
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doni_georgia Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-24-04 08:56 AM
Response to Reply #50
59. Jesus the radical
Think of why Jesus was so rejected by the religious leaders of his day:

He associated with "sinners."

He broke with tradition

He believed in unmerited forgiveness(let whoever is without sin cast the first stone)

He affirmed women and children and treated them with respect

He affirmed the worth and dignity of the poor and down-trodden

He did not look, act, or talk like what the religious leaders felt a messiah would look, act or talk like.

My guess is if Jesus would appear on the world scene today like he did some 2000 years ago, the religious leaders in Christianity would no more recognize or accept him than the religious leaders did back then.

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bleedingheart Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-24-04 08:36 AM
Response to Original message
52. Funny how they are typically the ones slapping cheeks instead
of turning them....

I find them hypocritical and evil and I am related by marriage to a few of them....all of them nutso.
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Lydia Leftcoast Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-24-04 08:44 AM
Response to Original message
55. As others have said, Evangelicals and Fundamentalists are different
Edited on Sat Apr-24-04 08:49 AM by Lydia Leftcoast
The fundamentalists are the rigid, letter-of-Leviticus, authoritarian types.

The evangelicals emphasize personal conversion, but they represent a wider range of beliefs. Jimmy Carter is an evangelical, as are the subscribers to Sojourners.

If you think all Christians are mindless bigots, then, if you're not a mindless bigot yourself, you should check out this website and get a broader view:


http://www.sojo.net

Here are the major feature articles from the current issue:

The Lawyer, the Bible, and the Governor
An interview with Susan Pace Hamill, the lawyer whose prophetic tax ethics convinced a Bible Belt Republican governor



The War at Home
by Linda Crockett
Why are churches silent about family violence?


Bruce Cockburn in Baghdad
The globe-trotting troubadour describes the real and surreal in Iraq.

-----------------
If you act as if Sojourners and the mainline denominations who just criticized Bush's environmental record and the Catholics who have worked for labor rights around the world don't exist and mindlessly bash all religious people, you're inadvertently working as a recruiting tool for the Republicans.

Yeah, yeah, I know that you know a lof of insufferable fundamentalists. I do, too. But when you bash all religious people, you're doing exactly the same thing as the freepers who think all left-of-center people want a Communist dictatorship.
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GreenPartyVoter Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-24-04 08:49 AM
Response to Reply #55
56. There are fundy evangelicals
Edited on Sat Apr-24-04 08:50 AM by GreenPartyVoter
but there are far more conesrvative ones who aren't so rigid in their beliefs as to be trying to recreate life as it was in the Middle East 2000+ years ago. But they are still fairly strict in many ways.

The church I go to (conservative hubby's choice, not mine) is cool in that it allows women to be ordained and allow for the possibility of old earth creation, but they are not for women's choice or social justice for homosexuals, and they ban drinking, dancing, gambling, smoking, etc.

Also, the evangy part of "everyone else's faith is wrong" (including many Christian denoms) let's go convert them drives me up the wall.


Would Jesus love a liberal? You bet!
http://www.geocities.com/greenpartyvoter/liberalchristi...
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Alpharetta Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-24-04 08:50 AM
Response to Original message
57. Christianity has become more polarized
Dobson and his ilk own the airwaves now.

Their agenda is not intended to unite Christians, it is to polarize them and since they own more of the airwaves and the legislatures, they know the polarization will result in their ownership of "American Christianity"

Just like Air America is attempting to represent the disenfranchised middle and left of the U.S., Christian liberals also need representation by radio hosts.
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GreenPartyVoter Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-24-04 08:51 AM
Response to Reply #57
58. I agree! If you know of any
Edited on Sat Apr-24-04 08:52 AM by GreenPartyVoter
please let me know as I would love to put links to their shows on my website.

(I've asked around at the various Christian forums, but no one seems to know of any.)

Would Jesus love a liberal? You bet!
http://www.geocities.com/greenpartyvoter/liberalchristi...
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Az Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-24-04 08:57 AM
Response to Original message
60. There is a fundimental (no pun) problem
Evangelical Fundimentalism has a combination of tenents in its beliefs that put it at odds with a diverse open culture. It posits that it has the absolute truth, it insists that those who do not accept this truth are under sway of evil, and that they must bring their message to all the world.

This combination of beliefs lead its follower to be intolerant in a society that requires tolerance. It creates resistance to a secular government. And it causes them to attempt to press their beliefs onto others (with a particular focus on children).

Liberal theologies have embraced the necessity of tolerance of other beliefs due to social pressures that brought change 100s of years ago. While Evangelicals have reclaimed their charge to bring the world to god.
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JHBowden Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-24-04 09:00 AM
Response to Original message
61. No.
As a student of science, anyone who claims the world is 6,000 years old has their head up their ass, regardless if I point it out or not.

Think about the entire political agenda-- forcing women to have babies, hating gay people, teaching their Texastan-style superstitions in science classes, censorship of video games/tv/radio, their irrational fear of drug abuse from liquor to weed, public executions etc. -- are we really sympathetic towards their vision of a Taliban-style America?
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The Lone Liberal Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-24-04 09:12 AM
Response to Original message
63. If Evangelicals will stop trying to use the bayonet
to convert me, I will stop using words to denounce them.
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BiggJawn Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-24-04 09:35 AM
Response to Reply #63
69. Getting ahead of things, aren't you? they aren't using bayonets....
...YET!!!

But they will, they will.
This, I believe.
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The Lone Liberal Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-24-04 09:36 AM
Response to Reply #69
70. Analogy for the government
Bayonet = all the shit coming out of the state houses and Congress.
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BiggJawn Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-24-04 09:40 AM
Response to Reply #70
73. Well, yes, that is already happening.
What with all this "Defense of Marriage" bullshit when it's "married today, divorced tomorrow" heteros who actually make a mockery of it and the other superstitous crap being proposed.

I was referring to the day when "The Handmaiden's Tale" gets moved onto the non-fiction shelves...
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The Lone Liberal Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-24-04 09:43 AM
Response to Reply #73
75. Defense of Marriage is only the latest cause celeb
used to stir up the rubes, wackos and mystics.
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chicagojoe Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-24-04 09:37 AM
Response to Original message
71. I can never understand why religious people can't
just be happy with the fact that they have the FULL FREEDOM to worship as they wish. No, that's not good enough for so many of them. Many fundamentalists feel that they have to force their beliefs upon everyone else.
The separation of Church and State MUST be maintained by ANY MEANS NECESSARY!!!
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Puglover Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-24-04 11:10 AM
Response to Original message
80. I agree with Randi Rhodes....
Edited on Sat Apr-24-04 11:11 AM by pjeffrey4444
there are two kinds of Evangelical Christians....Left Wing and Right Wing...the difference?
You never see Left Wing Evangelical Christians because they are in Africa helping aids babies and other such worthwhile causes.
Right Wing Evangelical Christians are readily visible parading up and down in front of Planned Parenthood Clinics and Metropolitan gay friendly churches.
I paraphrased alot here but I just loved that when she said it!
My two cents is we pick on the RWEC all we want too.
:evilgrin:
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SOteric Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-24-04 11:21 AM
Response to Original message
81. I think you beg the question.
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kodi Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-24-04 11:41 AM
Response to Original message
82. kristof is dumb. evangelical christians aren't necessarily fundamantalists
kristof continues to be one of the dumbest shitbags on the planet. he doesn't know what the hell he is talking about, as usual.

in many cases, there are profound differences between those who refer to themselves as evangelical christians and those who refer to themselves as fundamantalists.

its like arabs and muslims, some of each are some of the other.

i know many evangelical christians who espouse liberal viewpoints. i know no fundamentalist christians who do.

but in painting an absurd brushstroke by referring to fundamantalists as evangelical christians kristof is resorting to a specious argument meant to chastize those who oppose fundamentalism.

it is the pernicious nature of their absolutism which flies in the face of objectivity and rationality that engenders both fear and ridicule.

they are wolves disguised in the lamb of god clothing.
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IronLionZion Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-24-04 11:45 AM
Response to Original message
83. Once again, Jimmy Carter is an Evangelical Christian
They're not all bad you know. They're not all right-wing fundies. I bet there are some on DU right now.
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LoZoccolo Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-24-04 12:11 PM
Response to Original message
84. 39% of evangelical Christians are democrats.
I think the religious right gets too much attention in that people seem to accept the premise they're putting forth that they represent a Christian point of view. But I saw a poll last summer that showed it's really not how most of us would think - I'm a little surprised it's that much but then I'm not because I realize it's a theological distinction and not a political or organizational one like some think. I see some evangelicals on here now and then, and they'll talk a little about how they don't feel welcome, and it'll be amidst all this name-calling and what not and I think...wouldn't you want these people that are part of the 39% to stick around and get a lot of the good information we pass around and a lot of good arguments about the separation of church and state that they could spread to their fellow religious people? Like what's the purpose of chasing them away; I don't get that. We're here for common purpose and people here are taking away from that common purpose for I-don't-know-what reason.

I see a lot of demands put forth too, like "as soon as they stop doing what they're doing I'll stop picking on them", but I don't really see an exit strategy to this divide and the problems it causes there. It's like, show me a plan. Personally I think that we should make very clear as liberals that we respect freedom of religion. I know people are angry, but it's easy to rage on on a message board; what are you actually going to do?
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Name removed Donating Member (0 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-24-04 12:58 PM
Response to Original message
86. Deleted message
Message removed by moderator. Click here to review the message board rules.
 
LoZoccolo Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-24-04 01:13 PM
Response to Reply #86
88. Perfect example...
...of what I was saying in post #84. This is actually serious.
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Nomad559 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-24-04 01:04 PM
Response to Original message
87. Barna surveys on evangelical Christians
http://www.datalounge.com/datalounge/news/record.html?r...

The American Family Association, a far right lobbying group in Washington, released results from a recent survey that shows mainstream Americans see evangelical Christians as one of the least likeable groups in the country.

Researchers from the Barna survey asked respondents how they felt about evangelicals, born-again Christians, ministers, and other groups of people in society. According to the survey, evangelicals came in tenth out of eleven, narrowly beating out prostitutes.



http://www.worthynews.com/news-features/christian-divor...

The Barna Research Firm is defending a recent survey which found some disturbing statistics regarding born-again Christians and divorce. The survey found that born-again Christians were just as likely as non-believers to divorce.

In fact, the survey found that the divorce rate is higher for Christians when compared with non-believers.



http://headlines.agapepress.org/archive/12/afa/62002a.a...

A new survey shows that adults with no connection to the Christian faith have low opinions of evangelicals. The researcher who conducted the study believes that may be one reason why churches are not growing.

The Barna survey asked respondents how they felt about evangelicals, born-again Christians, ministers, and other types of people. According to the survey, evangelicals came in tenth out of eleven, trailing lesbians and lawyers but beating out prostitutes.



http://www.ptm.org/01PT/JanFeb/GAcommentary.htm

A friend of mine just returned from a conference reporting disturbing results from a new survey. North Americans were asked to name the type of individual they would least like to have as a next door neighbor. The most feared and least liked next door neighbor -- a serial killer, a drug dealer or a terrorist? Not according to this survey!

The number one, least liked and most feared potential next-door neighbor (imagine a drumroll here) -- a conservative Christian!



http://www.worldvision.org/worldvision/pr.nsf/stable/ne...

A new survey shows that evangelicals less likely than other Americans to help children orphaned by AIDS.

The survey of more than 1,000 adults, sponsored by World Vision and conducted by the California-based Barna Research Group, found that 3 percent of evangelicals said they "definitely" would help children orphaned because of AIDS, compared with 5 percent of all respondents.



http://www.connectionmagazine.org/archives_old/archives...

Americans have been called the most religious population on earth. But a new study shows that only a minority of adults strongly hold opinions that line up with scripture.

A recent Barna Research survey showed that 60% of all adults agree that the Bible is totally accurate in all it teaches. However, people's knowledge of the content actually taught in the Bible often falls short. For example, 53% of people believe the Bible teaches that God helps those who help themselves. Forty-one percent agreed that the Holy Spirit is not real, but a symbol of God's presence.
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asteroid2003QQ47 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-24-04 06:56 PM
Response to Original message
90. many evangelicals are not objective and fair
We have to stop demonizing Christianity. When we do so, we are no better than those on the right who demonize anyone who thinks differently than they do.--d_g #40

Matthew 28: 19-20

19 Go therefore and make disciples of people of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the holy spirit, 20 teaching them to observe all the things I have commanded you. And, look! I am with you all the days until the conclusion of the system of things.

New World Translation of the Holy scriptures


I, for one, most certainly think differently than they do in that I recognize premeditated assault when it is committed on me. That those who use scripture to rationalize what they refuse to view as assault, readily blame the victim when they suffer rejection, only serves to strengthen my resolve to not be victimized.
If it is seen as demonizing, so be it!
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