Rep. Vicky Hartzler of Missouri, one of the wingnuttiest of all the Republicans in Congress, was on Tony Perkins’ radio show last week and openly declared her preference for Christian hegemony on government endorsement. Discussing the fact that the Air Force Academy had worship spaces for multiple religions, including Muslim, Buddhist, Hindu and pagan, the two of them said:
Perkins: Do you see this as a part of a growing trend that we see that there is really kind of a marginalization of Christianity and almost a promotion of other forms of, I would have to say, fringe religions?
Hartzler: I agree, I think so. Christianity is the main religion in our country and as a policy for the Department of Defense we need to defend the practice of religion but we do not have to obligate taxpayer funds to facilitate or accommodate it or pay for it.
Perkins: Is it the government’s role to try to put all religions on the same plane?
Hartzler: No, it’s not their role at all. Their role is to facilitate basic policy for our country and to not to try to lift up one religion over the other, they should be defending the basic rights that we have, that freedom of religion here, and certainly not facilitating or accommodating fringe religions, it’s crazy.
Imagine the perversity of the question “Is it the government’s role to try to put all religions on the same plane?” In Perkins’ mind, of course, it is the government’s job to promote Christianity and Christianity alone and the notion that the government should treat all religious views equally is anathema. The Christian chapel at the Academy, by the way, cost $3.5 million to build; the pagan worship space cost $80,000. And even that inequality isn’t enough to satisfy them.