The Boy Scout Oath:
On my honor I will do my best
To do my duty to God and my country
and to obey the Scout Law;
To help other people at all times;
To keep myself physically strong,
mentally awake, and morally straight
We have been recipients of numerous WTF moments from the right wing over the past two years, and in 2013, from all indications, we won’t have to worry about going without. The right wing reaction to the possibility of the Boy Scouts actually treating gay kids like human beings is particularly amusing. They’ve pulled out all the stops.
It got so bad that the Boy Scouts have decided to postpone their decision until May. Until further notice, gay kids are still animals to be abused by religious bigots. That hasn’t stopped the American Family Association’s Sandy Rios from saying, as Right Wing Watch reports, “that gay men are child predators by nature and consequently should be banned from Scouting.”
She even has logic on her side: “Not all gay men are pedophiles but all male pedophiles who like boys are gay.”
The logical corollary to this is that, “Not all straight men are pedophiles but all male pedophiles who like girls are heterosexual.”
Rios isn’t really interested in logic. She is interested in demonizing gay men.
And of course, we can’t have a conversation these days without Satan: Matt Barber of Liberty Counsel, blames Satan for all this tolerance, saying that,
The Prince of the Earth seeks to corrupt and ultimately destroy all that is righteous, honorable and good. It’s little wonder, then, that for years the Boy Scouts have faced a malicious and unrelenting assault at the hands of those “who call evil good and good evil.”
I can’t imagine what the Religious Right would do without Satan and demons. If you can’t win an argument on its merits – and no conservative alive today can do that – then play the Satan card. It gets the gullible masses every time.
World Net Daily does the impossible: out-meating Buster Wilson’s meat: Barry Farber writes that “homogrifying the Scouts would hijack the very mission of scouting and turn the organization into a beehive of erotic exploration.”
Sounds like Barry is engaging in some wishful thinking. Just sayin’.
Barry immediately goes for the Nazi link. We all know the Nazis were gaydom personified. We know that because they threw all the gays into concentration camps.
This is language very similar to the white supremacist language used by groups like Stormfront, who like to talk about “negrifying” and ”negrification” of various aspects of American life, like pro football. Stormfront fanboys and fangirls like this Hitler quote more than a little:
I don’t see much future for the Americans. It’s a decayed country. And they have their racial problem, and the problem of social of social inequalities . . . Everything about the behavior of American society reveals that it’s half Judaized, and the other half negrified. How can one expect a State like that to hold together – a country where everything is built on the dollar?
And now our own conservatives have adding homogrifying to list of liberal sins. Look, Hitler was a bourgeois Catholic boy from Austria. He had the sort of attitude you’d expect toward blacks. And Jews. And gypsies. And gays.
In fact, a lot of what we are seeing from the right, and not only limited to the question of LGBT rights but a wide spectrum of issues, come directly from Hitler himself, who wrote in Mein Kampf that propaganda works when it confines itself to a few points and repeats them over and over:
The art of propaganda consists in putting a matter so clearly and forcibly before the minds of the people as to create a general conviction regarding the reality of a certain fact, the necessity of certain things and the just character of something that is essential…it must appeal to the feelings of the public rather than to their reasoning powers.
This is a lesson American conservatism, and the Religious Right in particular, have learned well.
Look at Robert Knight, senior fellow at the American Civil Rights Union, who, reports One News Now, said that the “core” problem “is that America has been told that homosexuality is now moral and healthy and normal, even though it’s none of the three. It’s a sin. The Bible makes it clear it’s sinful. It hurts people.”
It’s a sin. Over and over and over again: it’s a sin. Yeah, we get that. If you think so, don’t do it. End of story. It’s a win for everybody.
Saying otherwise is, on the surface at least, a hard-sell: convincing Americans that giving everybody equal rights in a country founded on the idea that everybody has equal rights, will somehow destroy that country.
But the religious right no more than conservatism itself, wants nothing to do with a win for everybody. They want a win for the few – namely, themselves, and everybody else can go make lemonade. They cleverly shape their propaganda to keep “everybody” out of the picture. After all, the Boy Scout oath doesn’t just talk about God and morality: it also talks about helping others “at all times.” Those others don’t, apparently, include the constructed Other and “at all times” goes right under the bus and gets pissed on for good measure.
Let’s face it: people who selectively read the Bible like these false Christians are certainly not going to read the entire Boy Scout oath. You might note the oath at the top of the screen. The emphasis has been added – by Matt Barber. You can see he didn’t emphasize the helping people “at all times.”
And so they drill their talking points home, over and over again.
And they know perfect well what they’re doing, accusing the political left of their own sins. Look at Rick Perry, saying that he hopes the Boy Scouts will not “succumb” to the “cruel intolerance” of the left, for crying out loud.
The real cruel intolerance is treating gay kids like lepers were once treated.
Yes, Republicans have become the new masters of propaganda. A few simple lies repeated endlessly does the trick nicely. They have their masses as fired up as attendees of a Nuremburg rally, and there is just as much hatred in the air, directed not at Jews this time (though there is that as well) but at members of the LGBT community, people who, the Constitution says, have the same rights as any of us.
Hrafnkell Haraldsson, a social liberal with leanings toward centrist politics has degrees in history and philosophy. His interests include, besides history and philosophy, human rights issues, freedom of choice, religion, and the precarious dichotomy of freedom of speech and intolerance. He brings a slightly different perspective to his writing, being that he is neither a follower of an Abrahamic faith nor an atheist but a polytheist, a modern-day Heathen who follows the customs and traditions of his Norse ancestors. He maintains his own blog, A Heathen’s Day, which deals with Heathen and Pagan matters, and Mos Maiorum Foundation www.mosmaiorum.org, dedicated to ethnic religion. He has also contributed to NewsJunkiePost, GodsOwnParty and Pagan+Politics.