Georgia’s Republican soon-to-be Representative Barry Loudermilk of Georgia, who was endorsed by none other than David Barton, probably because Loudermilk repeats Barton verbatim at every opportunity, appeared on Washington Watch with Josh Duggar to tell Georgians that he will fight the good fight against people who think they have a right to ruin Christmas by not being Christians like everybody else. Yes, what Mikey Weinstein says of the military chaplaincy is true of the U.S. House of Representatives true, that it “has been transformed largely into a clearing-house for evangelizing zealous zombies”:
It used to be that Christmas used to be a time when everybody put their differences aside and came together…but just recently it seems like it’s gotten to the point where we have to defend the rights that are given to us to celebrate the birth of Christ and even just the celebration of Christmas has been under fire by the far left.
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You can read between the lines here: What he is saying is that he misses the days when everybody was a Christian, or at least knew enough to pretend to be a Chrisitan. You know, before there were people in the Western World who were Muslims and Hindus and Pagans, to name just a few, when Jews knew to keep their heads down and atheists were wise enough to remain in the closet with J. Edgar Hoover.
This is a lot of hooey, obviously. Nobody is attacking anybody’s right to celebrate Christmas. Nobody has closed any churches. Nobody is entering anybody’s home to make sure no crèches are displayed or prayers spoken.
What is taking place recently is an expression by people who happen to not be Christian, or who think other people have the right to be not be Christian, to be free of the Christian celebration of this time of year as “the Christmas season.”
For during this time of year, fake Christians like Loudermilk want to force everybody else to be Christian too. No exceptions. You know, like the good old days when Jesus and his disciples sat around the Christmas tree and exchanged presents, and cavemen cavorted with their pet velociraptors in a game of polo, and when the Founding Fathers were digging frantically through the Bible for clues as to how to write the U.S. Constitution.
Yes. Those good old days. Those non-existent, never-happened good old days.
And this is the real war, if war there is: a campaign to shove Jesus as the reason for the season down our collective throats. Never mind the mountain of facts which prove this season originally had nothing to do with Jesus at all.
But Loudermilk insists that “Americans have kind of lost that spirit of American exceptionalism and pride in the nation.” And “lost their sense of hope.” He says, “I almost see America as George Bailey” of It’s A Wonderful Life.
There is some momentum that we haven’t seen in many years in this nation that people are just tired of political correctness, they’re tired of having their rights stepped upon and they’re ready for something different.
I think somebody has been eating some special holiday brownies.
The funny thing with Loudermilk citing Frank Capra’s It’s a Wonderful Life, is that it is a liberal film embracing liberal values. In fact, it is so liberal that in 1947, the FBI considered the film to be communist propaganda:
To: The Director
COMMUNIST INFILTRATION OF THE MOTION PICTURE INDUSTRY
There is submitted herewith the running memorandum concerning Communist infiltration of the motion picture industry which has been brought up to date as of May 26, 1947….
With regard to the picture “It’s a Wonderful Life”, [redacted] stated in substance that the film represented rather obvious attempts to discredit bankers by casting Lionel Barrymore as a “scrooge-type” so that he would be the most hated man in the picture. This, according to these sources, is a common trick used by Communists.
>In addition, [redacted] stated that, in his opinion, this picture deliberately maligned the upper class, attempting to show the people who had money were mean and despicable characters. [redacted] related that if he made this picture portraying the banker, he would have shown this individual to have been following the rules as laid down by the State Bank Examiner in connection with making loans. Further, [redacted] stated that the scene wouldn’t have “suffered at all” in portraying the banker as a man who was protecting funds put in his care by private individuals and adhering to the rules governing the loan of that money rather than portraying the part as it was shown. In summary, [redacted] stated that it was not necessary to make the banker such a mean character and “I would never have done it that way.”
[redacted] recalled that approximately 15 years ago, the picture entitled “The Letter” was made in Russia and was later shown in this country. He recalled that in this Russian picture, an individual who had lost his self-respect as well as that of his friends and neighbors because of drunkenness, was given one last chance to redeem himself by going to the bank to get some money to pay off a debt. The old man was a sympathetic character and was so pleased at his opportunity that he was extremely nervous, inferring he might lose the letter of credit or the money itself. In summary, the old man made the journey of several days duration to the bank and with no mishap until he fell asleep on the homeward journey because of his determination to succeed. On this occasion the package of money dropped out of his pocket. Upon arriving home, the old man was so chagrined he hung himself. The next day someone returned the package of money to his wife saying it had been found. [redacted] draws a parallel of this scene and that of the picture previously discussed, showing that Thomas Mitchell who played the part of the man losing the money in the Capra picture suffered the same consequences as the man in the Russian picture in that Mitchell was too old a man to go out and make money to pay off his debt to the banker.
Well, we wouldn’t want to portray bankers in a negative light, would we?
It does not matter that Capra was a Republican who hated FDR and his New Deal, because as The New York Times tells us, his writers “generally ranged from New Deal Democrats to card-carrying Communists” – which, when you come to think of it – given his films are “parables of ordinary people forced to stand up against the greed and corruption of the rich and powerful” – explains a lot.
It is interesting that Republicans can see the film attacking their banker friends as some sort of “conservative manifesto,” but they do, and Glenn Beck is not the only one awash in that particular sea of self-delusion.
I’m not giving Loudermilk my cloak when he steals my coat. I’m a Heathen, not a follower of Jesus. But I am, in the shared spirit of holiday giving, willing to chip in to buy him a “plexiotomy” – that is, a procedure where a section of the abdomen is taken out and a piece of Plexiglas is inserted, so that people who have their heads up their backsides can see where they’re going.
Because that’s what the season is all about.
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.