Last night, President Obama put the problem in very simple terms:
It will be a choice between two different paths for America.
A choice between two fundamentally different visions for the future.
With one of those visions for the future being the past.
Pretty much everyone not right of Adolf Hitler has noticed that the Republican agenda is a bit backward looking this time around. Barack Obama’s slogan this year is Forward for a reason. The Republicans want to take us backward, the Democrats want to take us forward. It’s a pretty simple choice and the Democrats speaking at the convention all tied that idea into their speeches.
But what Obama said even before his convention speech particularly rankled the bigoted one from the AFA. Campaigning during the Republican National Convention, the president opined while touring a farm museum:
“It was something to behold. Despite all the challenges that we face … what they offered over those three days was more often than not an agenda that was better suited for the last century. It was a re-run. We’ve seen it before. You might as well have watched it on a black-and-white TV.”
The president, I think, was being too kind.
Watch Fischer’s reaction, courtesy of Right Wing Watch:
You know, Barack Obama is out there, or the Democrats are out there, saying we want to go back, saying Republicans want to take us back to the days of black-and-white TV, that’s what Barack Obama says.
And I say no, we’re going way, way, way back further than that; we are going all the way to the dawn of creation. God is the one who created us male and female; God is the one who formed marriage, who created marriage, who designed it to be a union of one man and one woman for life. So we’re going way past the 1950s; we’re going clear back to the Garden of Eden.
Now I contend that we shed innocent blood and we honor sexual perversity to our national peril. This is not an incidental thing; it puts our nation in grave danger of the judgment of God. If we shed innocent blood and we embrace sexual deviancy, this will bring the judgment of God upon any nation that approves of those behaviors and gives them special protection in laws.
It just doesn’t occur to Fisher to keep his behaviors to himself, or his beliefs about those behaviors. He’s in good standing with his God if he is atually living his life as his God wants him to live it. But if Fisher opened up the Old Testament he would see that heterosexuality notwithstanding, he’s doomed himself to hellfire for shaving his beard.
I mean, he’s pretty much f-d whatever the Democrats do about marriage equality, so why does he care about who marries whom? When was the last time this clown obeyed God’s law by stoning an adulterer to death, say, Newt Gingrich? That was Jesus’ message: if the kingdom of God is on its way, don’t sweat the small stuff, like marriage.
Fischer just doesn’t get it. He doesn’t get his own Bible, he doesn’t get the U.S. Constitution, and he doesn’t get reality itself. This is a man with his head so far up his own backside that he’s forgotten what the sky looks like. Talk about a disgusting sort of play on Plato’s allegory of the cave!
Look, Republicans are always about turning back the clock. That’s what conservatives do: maintain the status quo. It’s their thing. That’s why they’re not revolutionaries. That’s why their mockery of the actual patriots is such an egregious sin. Conservatives can only be counter-revolutionaries. They want to turn back the New Deal, they want to turn back the Enlightenment and the Renaissance. Fischer even wants to turn back Second Temple Judaism and Jesus himself.
Rep. John Lewis gave probably the most emotional speech last night, talking about his experiences as one of the original 13 Freedom Riders. He told the convention crowd and millions at home that, “we have come too far together to ever turn back. So we must not be silent. We must stand up, speak up and speak out. We must march to the polls like never before. We must come together and exercise our sacred right.”
He spoke of Republican voter suppression efforts. Coming from a man who not only lived through the battle for civil rights but was a central participant in it, these words are not easily dismissed. As Lewis said, “Today it is unbelievable that there are Republican officials still trying to stop some people from voting.”
And it is. Bryan Fischer and his sort are worried about what they call “biblical marriage” but have no concern for Constitutional voting rights. Nobody can prove the Garden of Eden existed; you can only believe that it did. But we know the Constitution exists and we know who wrote it: their signatures are on it.
The Constriction and all its amendments are the law of the land, as the Founding Fathers intended, not the Bible and certainly not the interpretations of Christian holy men clinging to the last vestiges of antediluvian privilege.
The Bible is being used as a weapon to keep people down, to keep them in place and to hold them there. It is supposed to be a tool for liberation of the spirit, not an excuse for physical chains of the flesh.
They want to take us back to a place of mythology and pretend that the very real present is of less importance than their imaginary paradise. Every religion, including mine, has its mythologies and no matter how you wish to interpret mythology as a word, it does not come out as a physical place that living people are meant to go, except in their imaginations.
It is bad enough to stop the clock, but burning it back, whether its ten years or fifty years, a hundred years or centuries or millennia, is wrong. We fought those battles already;;our mothers and fathers and grandparents and ancestors before them fought those battles and we should not have to fight them again.
As the president said in closing last night:
We don’t turn back. We leave no one behind. We pull each other up. We draw strength from our victories, and we learn from our mistakes, but we keep our eyes fixed on that distant horizon, knowing that providence is with us, and that we are surely blessed to be citizens of the greatest nation on earth.
Put your eyes on the distant horizon, Bryan Fischer, because that’s where you’re going, even if we have to drag you kicking and screaming. In fact, we’d prefer it if you were kicking and screaming.