New efforts, new claims from the failing Christian Right

Published on Online Journal, by Mel Seesholtz, Ph.D., June 11, 2010.

For decades, leaders of the Christian Right have screamed “activist judges!” whenever a ruling was not to their liking. They were also fond of calling such judges “godless,” a standard slur for anyone who disagreed with their so-called “biblical worldview.”

Now, in a stunning display of hypocrisy and twisted reasoning, they’re trying to install their own activist “Christian judges” on California courts: … //

… Cherry-picking the Bible is easy. One can justify slavery, genocide, misogyny, murder, torture, mutilation, polygamy, and a host of what today we would call pathologies and crimes against humanity. But Mr. Hendry and those like him wish to focus only those passages that help them in their campaign against gay and lesbian Americans: a campaign to embed certain religion-based discriminations into the civil laws of the United States.

The other unspoken, but fundamental goal of Mr. Hendry’s Better Courts Now campaign seems to be the perpetuation of the myth that the United States was founded as a Christian nation. It wasn’t. Many of the most prominent Founding Fathers — Benjamin Franklin, George Washington, Samuel Adams and Thomas Jefferson to name but a few — were not Christians. They were Deists, those who believe in “Divinity,” but in a more universal, open-minded way.

Then as now, Deists accept the notion of Divinity and respect Jesus as a teacher, but do not believe in his Divinity, the second-hand, politically motivated “revealed word” attributed to Moses and Old Testament prophets, or New Testament authorities such as Peter, Paul and John. And in the 18th century, Deists were particularly skeptical of the allegedly “God given” dogma created and propagated by politically motivated church leaders. Not surprisingly, the word “God” does not appear in the U.S. Constitution, and there is absolutely no mention of “Jesus,” which one would certainly expect if the U.S. had been founded as a Christian nation.

Why the need to have the United States be seen as a “Christian nation”? Because it would give those who have perverted Christianity into a political tool more clout? Perhaps. But more likely it’s an example of desperation.

The Christian Right is losing the campaign to embed religion-based bigotry and discrimination into civil law. More than a few of their shining stars have been busted. First there was the vehemently anti-gay Ted Haggard, founder of the New Life mega-church and president of the National Association of Evangelicals. While railing against homosexuality, Rev. Haggard was secretly paying a male prostitute (Mike Jones) for sex and some crystal meth to make it last longer. At first, in 2006, Rev. Haggard denied it, then admitted it, and then, in 2009

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