Look Out First Amendment – Theocracy Inbound

Artist: Jon McNaughton
"One Nation Under God: If the founding fathers and patriotic heroes of the past could speak to us today-- what would they say?"

There is at this point no hope at all we will escape a theocracy if Republicans win in 2012. They can call it anything they like, but we all know what it will be. The religion-based legislation has continued to pile up since 2010 as has the religion-based bigotry that inspires it. There is no end in sight and it only continues to get worse as we approach Election Day.

Imagine if both the president and the Senate were Republican as well as the House. There would suddenly be no place in America for non-Christians like me (or the wrong kind of Christians like many of you unless they chose to play the “good Indian” game that historically never ends happily). If you doubt this is true, look at what they say; look at what they do.

Look at recent legislation from Florida, where religious demagoguery is alive and well: Rep. Charles Van Zant (R-Palatka), an ordained Baptist minister, has introduced legislation that openly nixes the Constitution’s First Amendment and the Supreme Court, proclaiming that God is the creator of life and as such it is beyond the purview of government to interfere. The bill (HB 415 – the “Florida for Life Act”) claims that ‘all life comes from the Creator and begins at conception.’  Therefore the United States Supreme Court is not qualified to ‘determine, establish, or define the moral values of the people of the United States and specifically for the people of Florida.’”

The bill has language in common with Personhood Florida’s proposed law but its disdain for and blatant disregard of secular law is far more pronounced. What Van Zant ignores, of course, is the plain and simple fact that he and people who believe like he does can simply decline to have abortions should they wish: nobody is defining his moral values or stripping them away. The real problem for Van Zant is that other people are currently free to ignore HIS moral values, and we can’t have this, can we?

The utter refusal by Republican legislators to accept facts as proven by science is breathtaking. These are religious pronouncements, as from a religious authority, essentially stating that from a legal standpoint science has no bearing on any subject religion has staked a claim to: homosexuality, is one such subject, as is contraception, as is global warming, where we are assured God will look out for us, having previously promised not to kill us off with another flood. Yet sea levels continue to rise regardless. At what point does dogma give way to common sense and the facts on the ground? Is it enough when you’re feet are below water? Your knees? Your thighs?

According to the historical record, it doesn’t. Religious authority responds only to fait accompli and that is unlikely when those religious authorities hold the reins of power as they do in many states currently. Look how long it took Europe to climb out of the Dark Ages to the Renaissance and then Enlightenment. Look how many people died making that possible. And though Van Zant claims the Supreme Court has no authority, he will no doubt quite happily rely on them when their ranks are stacked with Bible-thumping conservatives like him.

Every step forward is accompanied by the requisite stop backward; as per Newton’s Third Law, to every action there is an equal and opposite reaction. But since science is irrelevant here, sometimes there are two or more steps back. Look for a moment at the Republican reaction to President Obama’s embrace of marriage equality – the sudden need to reinforce the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA). From Politico:

Just hours after President Barack Obama publicly backed gay marriage, the House struck back and passed a measure aimed at reinforcing the Defense of Marriage Act.

With a 245-171 vote, the House voted to stop the Justice Department from using taxpayer funds to actively oppose DOMA — the Clinton-era law defining marriage as between a man and a woman that the Obama administration stopped enforcing in February 2011.

So we can use taxpayer funds to defend what is essentially a religious position, but we cannot use taxpayer funds to oppose it?

And then there is this less than golden nugget from the AP:

“The president has repealed ‘don’t ask, don’t tell’ and is using the military as props to promote his gay agenda,” said Rep. Todd Akin, R-Mo., who is running for Senate.

The committee, on a vote of 37-24, backed an amendment that barred same-sex marriages or “marriage-like” ceremonies on military installations. The panel also endorsed an Akin amendment that said the services should accommodate the rights of conscience of members of the services and chaplains who are morally or religiously opposed to expressions of human sexuality.

[…]

“Members of this committee are looking to turn back the clock and find new ways to discriminate against gay and lesbian service members,” said Rep. Adam Smith of Washington state, the top Democrat on the committee. “These men and women serve with honor and distinction and this amendment sends a message that their service is not valued.”

The so-called `Military Religious Freedom Protection Act’ (HR 3828), would “amend title 10, [of the] United States Code, to require that implementation of the repeal of the former Department of Defense policy concerning homosexual behavior in the Armed Forces not infringe upon the free exercise of religion by and the rights of conscience of members of the Armed Forces, including chaplains, and for other purposes.”

Now obviously, they would oppose any legislation that allowed non-Christian chaplains to call Christians bad names; you would hear cries of persecution raised to the heavens. Religious objections to behavior and religious freedom can be the property of only those who claim they have sole possession of the truth. Remember, though the First Amendment makes all religions equal, they are proceeding from a place where their religion is the only real religion. The two points of view cannot co-exist and you know which one will have to go if they win in 2012.

Cue the Taliban[gelical] regime and welcome to New Kabul, citizens of DC. If this is what America wants, it will be easy enough to get. Given the effort the GOP is putting into suppressing the vote, we may get it regardless of how we vote.

In all, reports The Nation, as many as 5 million eligible voters could meet difficulties voting this Election Day due to new, restrictive voter laws, and “Right-wing billionaire brothers Charles and David Koch have funded efforts to thwart 21 million Americans from voting and Koch dollars helped write and propose voting suppression bills in thirty-eight states.” Even a 25 percent success rate could be catastrophic, and they have the money to spend and stand to make a f*ckton more if their plots come to fruition.

I won’t ask you to excuse the language because look, this isn’t Shakespeare; this is just how it is and I want you to be the hell offended. It’s time to do something about this and everyone who isn’t trying is now officially part of the problem.

Image from mcnaughtonart.com

26 Replies to “Look Out First Amendment – Theocracy Inbound”

  1. They’re too stupid to realize that if a particular religion can be forced upon the people, there may someday be a religion not to their liking that gets forced upon the people. And to think so many of them cloak themselves in the title of “constitutionalist.”

  2. Exactly: these people who demand religion in government always assume the religion in question will be theirs, when the chances are enormous that it won’t be- especially when you consider that, for instance, one kind of Baptist can’t stand another kind of Baptist, and a given kind of Pentecostal can’t stand a different kind of Pentecostal.

  3. I am over the religious extremists attempts to turn this nation into a christian theocracy… For far to long (30 some years) we have been purposefully mislead into believing that the christian community was wanting to build new relationships with the LBGT community.. Based on christs teachings, love and tolerance… But it was a ruse.. A ploy to lead us into believing that we were all working together for a common good.. Yet all the while they were working their well layed plans to undermine our rights and set back our cause.. No longer!!!! We are fighting back.. And will exposed the christian community for what it truly is.. A Virus that needs to be destroyed.. And cure this ailing nation of the sickness that this false religion had wrought upon this country and this world….

  4. The key here is:
    “The real problem for Van Zant is that other people are currently free to ignore HIS moral values, and we can’t have this, can we?”

    No theocracy is a regime that is good for the people. There never has been one. In order to keep you in the fold you must be watched, punished, re-educated for starters meaning there will be a huge government outlay of money and resources to keep you from opening your mouth.

    Not to mention there has never been a theocracy that wasnt corrupt. Look at the history of England, Italy and other states that suffered through either the catholic church or the church of england.

    Part of the GOP is trying to bring back the very thing the Pilgrims fled from. The Koch think they can use it to wield power and own states, some of the whacked out xtians think it will bring rapture but most think it will bring them power if they help it along. And the rest of the world will shun us becuase everything we were will be lost

  5. Religion of all stripes is the inspiration for all the wars and tribulation throughout this shrinking world. How long must we wait for hypocritical Christians, Jews,Mormons,Muslims,Hindus, et al, ad infinitum ,to acknowledge their thin understanding of the universe, and abandon their foolishness for the good of humanity?

  6. This is exactly why they are trying to get ahead of any possible trend away from THEIR beliefs. The spate of anti-gay marriage bills that have been rushed through states in recent years is an example. They see the polling trends year by year going counter to their beliefs and want desperately to stem the tide which will never happen. They do know that if you make a law it just creates another road block to progress that must be undone so they are like the schoolyard bully who takes your ball away so you can’t play your game that he doesn’t want to be a part of.

  7. I am an Atheist so you can guess where I stand on this attempt at religion to control my life and limit my choices. My girlfriend grew up protestant and married into Catholic. She calls herself spiritual now and does not attend church. This is a huge trend. They become disenchanted with formal religion. She said you only need to know and follow two biblial tenets, “Love thy neighbor” and “Judge NOT” yet formal religion tends to attempt to IGNORE these two principles the most.

  8. Ignoring or rewriting history is the goal of the right because it does not fit into their beliefs. They simply want ALL of us to live in their past and they believe PROGRESSIVE is a dirty word. Religion’s success relies on people to remain ignorant and shun teaching that gives them the tools of how to think on their own rather than telling individuals WHAT they should think.

  9. I wonder just which “Christianity” is the right one? Is it the peace churches, which appear to me to follow Christ more closely than anyone…but then, they would get rid of the massive defense budget to help the poor and educate everyone, and we can’t have that! Is it the Catholics, and their oh-so-sanctimonious bishops, who hate abortion but are fine with pedophiles in robes until they get caught? Is it the evangelicals, who gather en masse on Sundays to enrich the coffers of Osteen and others, then disappear for the week to divorce their spouses and rant about corruption and public education? Just what is Christianity, and why would anyone want a government prescribing what an entire country believes? Isn’t this why we fight ‘terrorism?’ Isn’t that why we turn our noses down at Saudi Arabia and Iran and their regressive and hateful treatment of women? Seems to me that the white power brokers want women subdued, minorities mute, and the elderly and poor gone. So much for democracy and the Constitution. Bush began the shredding, and the far right will complete the job unless we fight back. Loudly and persistently.

  10. Religions begin with a compassionate, intelligent, loving person, whether Jesus or the Buddha, but within a few centuries, they become “codified,” and metamorphasize into a group of old men trying to control food/clothing/sex because it’s purportedly what god wants. Anyone who claims to know the mind of “god,” assume there really is a supreme being out there somewhere, is either delusional or lying. These evangelical Christians are just the most recent incarnation of Ivan Karamazov’s grand inquisitor. To hell with them (irony intended).

  11. How do we break this vicious circle of entrenched incumbents and voters who view self-mutilation as preferable to changing parties?

    We need to get these state and federal legislators out of office.
    Prying incumbents out of office is very difficult, if only because those who elected them aren’t dead yet.
    Campaign finance needs to be dealt with and and end run done around Citizens United.
    Incumbents on the take, with lucrative lobbying positions waiting for them if they leave office, aren’t going to vote for campaign finance overhaul any time soon.

    But there just has to be a way to run these creeps out on a rail. Right now I’m reading The Occupy Handbook for clues.

  12. Vote. Get your friends to vote. Stand up for what you believe in, and don’t be embarrassed.
    Tell the Theocrats “you do NOT speak for me!”

  13. “…The bill (HB 415 – the “Florida for Life Act”) claims that ‘all life comes from the Creator and begins at conception.’ Therefore the United States Supreme Court is not qualified to ‘determine, establish, or define the moral values of the people of the United States and specifically for the people of Florida.’”…

    Isn’t this a blatant declaration of Sedition? From our good friends at Wikipedia:

    “In law, sedition is overt conduct, such as speech and organization, that is deemed by the legal authority to tend toward insurrection against the established order.

    Sedition often includes subversion of a constitution and incitement of discontent (or resistance) to lawful authority.

    Sedition may include any commotion, though not aimed at direct and open violence against the laws. Seditious words in writing are seditious libel. A seditionist is one who engages in or promotes the interests of sedition…”

  14. This is not what the founding fathers had intended!!! The Platzner Post Facebook, and Twitter

  15. If you are the wrong kind of Christian that’s just as bad as not being Christian to these fuktards. Imagine if Mormonism were forced on these Talibangelicals that would be fun to watch but from a long distance away. Mormons are Dominionists so they believe their church will be ruling the world soon. To bad we couldn’t just stick all these assholes in an arena with swords and watch them go at it.

  16. The one thing, despite all my reading on the subject, is I cannot figure out how a Mormon comes into play here. It is well known that Evangelicals think they are a cult so I am not sure how they will lead him around like a dog on a leash. The only thing I can think of is they have already made a deal with this devil to bring on board the evangelicals that they want in the cabinet. So what happens if Mitt betrays them? Are they going to destroy him? We all know Mitt has no core, no deeply held principles so he could very well betray them. Perhaps they have some shared goal I have not discerned that yet from a credible source.

    In conjunction with the CNP I know they have allowed mormon members, Scientology and Unification Church members because of their shared hatred of Islam but the Mormon elders clearly state that Mormons will go to Colorado and only sustain those of the faith if something catastrophic happens. Colorado is their meeting place. That is the purpose of their hoarding of supplies. Then the Mormon doctrine teaches Jesus will return to some city in MO. I guess the meetings could be for two different happenings. But I could not agree more with the premise of this article. I have done enough research to know it is all true and Mr. Haraldsson is right, people better start caring because if they don’t we will all have them to blame.

  17. The problem is who is willing to take them on? I don’t see anyone willing, except for possibly the ACLU or Southern Poverty Law Center, who might take them on. And neither of those organizations are versed on Theocracy and the RR plans to my knowledge.

    It is a scary proposition overall.

  18. I like your thinking. Maybe they should all be the ones living in District 12 and yearly we can choose who goes to fight the “Christian Games”

  19. You are so correct. I am telling everyone i know to vote and ask them to tell everyone they know to vote and to vote all of the ‘repub/taliban out of office and hope that after walker is voted out of office other states will be encouraged to do the same thing. We can impeach elected officials, just like presidents twice have been , so go democrats

  20. GeneralLerong, put down the Handbook for a day or so and read Smedley Butler, retired general of the Marine
    Corps, RIP, “War is a Racket.” This guy picked up on theocracy/democracy over sixty year’s ago. Historians don’t even know who he. He’s all over Utube. Now continue reading the Handbook. Need an organizer he’s an organizer.
    SHCCCC

  21. Exactly, how do we get them out? We have one chance, this November, to vote them out everywhere possible. If we blow this, and don’t get to the polls, and they win? We are in a whole different ballpark. Once they get full control, there will be no more “voting them out”. You’ll see rights rolled back that you would never believe would have happened in this country. Women, minorities. Marginalization and criminalization of certain segments of society, such as LGBT. They will make constitutional changes to suit them. They will change laws to suit them. Nothing short of a serious outright revolt will fix this. I hope people understand how serious this is and stop laying back, waiting on someone else to do it all.

  22. Uh… I’ve suffered enough at their hands too… and I’m a Christian.

    No additional suffering, please. I’d like to have a life for once.

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