GOP: The Anti-Jesus Party

gopjesus1I don’t believe I could construct a political party more diametrically opposed to the teachings of Jesus than the Republican Party even if I tried.  Of course, it’s not that easy to determine what Jesus said or thought about many things because the gospels seem to have been heavily influenced by later struggles of various Christian communities.  E.P. Sanders convincingly demonstrated thirty years ago that the Pharisees, whom the gospels portray as Jesus’s primary antagonists, were probably nothing like the caricature of that group we received from the early Christians.  More than likely they are an anachronism, a kind of theological foil to the emphases of Paul’s ministry, but I digress.  Certain themes and concerns of Jesus still stand out, like concern for the poor, acceptance of the foreigner and the marginalized, grace, mercy, and turning the other cheek.  He also seems to have exhibited a stubborn iconoclastic streak, questioning authoritarianism just enough to get himself killed.  If he existed at all (and I’m personally convinced he did), he was a subversive troublemaker who reserved his harshest criticism for the greedy and the sanctimonious.  He called the uber-religious a “brood of vipers” and told a rich man that he must sell everything he has and give it to the poor. Then there was that crazy moment in the Temple courtyard when he made a whip and started cracking it at people, flipping over tables and running them off, screaming at them because they were making money off of other people’s worship.  That most certainly sealed his doom.

Now let’s look at the Republican party of today:  Republicans today are deeply divided over strategy, but certain ideas still unite them under a common platform.  Supply-side economic theory dictates that the American financial system must above all support the “job creators” in hopes that their prosperity will “trickle down” to the rest of us (not their term, but it fits).  Consequently, Republican policies consistently favor the rich over the poor (“it’s in everyone’s best interests,” they tell us), and anyone who suggests the wealthy share more of their abundance with those less fortunate (or less accomplished) gets branded a “pinko commie socialist”, bent on the destruction of the free market.  Politicians hoping to garner praise among the GOP today must outdo one another in their efforts to reduce public assistance to the poor, the sick, the disabled, and the elderly.  Disdain for immigrants also distinguishes Republicans today to the point that Marco Rubio, a presidential hopeful and the son of Cuban immigrants, had to significantly scale back his previous aspirations for pushing immigration reform through the legislature because it was so unpopular among his party.  Republican voters today are “overwhelmingly white, mostly male,” and mostly from the middle and upper classes.  They lean in a heavily hawkish direction and they tend to believe strongly that the U.S. should “walk softly and carry a big stick” (soft walk optional).

If I were to paint a broad-stroke picture of the differences between the emphases of Jesus and those of the Republican Party at this point in time, it might look something like this:

jesusvGOP

Pretty much the opposite, right?  It would appear that any follower of Jesus would seek to oppose this party whenever they can.  But according to the Pew Research Center, in the last presidential election, white Evangelicals (who consider themselves the most devoted to following Jesus) were four times more likely to vote Republican than Democrat (about 80% of white Evangelicals surveyed said they voted for Mitt Romney).  I watched with amusement as hundreds of my Christian friends and neighbors wrestled with what must have been a gut-wrenching decision toward the latter half of 2012.  See, we Baptists were taught that Mormons aren’t legitimate Christians, and that their “church” is really an overgrown cult.  Where I come from, it is axiomatic that theological similarity trumps all other qualifications for public office, so you should vote for whichever politician most closely matches your own religious views.  But the alternative to electing a Mormon was to let Obama resume office again and that was simply unacceptable.

For many, the tipping point came when Franklin Graham arranged a meeting between Mitt Romney and Graham’s legendary father for a much publicized photo opportunity (honestly it was hard to tell if the elder Graham even understood with whom he was meeting).  Within a few days, the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association removed the Church of Latter Day Saints from their website’s blacklist, then they paid for full-page ads in more than a dozen national and battleground state newspapers encouraging voters to “cast our ballots for candidates who base their decisions on biblical principles.”  Which biblical values did they mean?  Hammering swords into plowshares? Welcoming the foreigner and the prisoner with open arms? Selling all you have and giving it to the poor?  No, the advertisement indicated that opposing abortion and gay marriage dictated which political candidates Christians should support.  To read this ad, you would think that all other distinctives of the life and teachings of Jesus take a backseat to these two hot-button issues—two issues, it is often noted, about which Jesus himself never said a word.  Justification for opposing same-sex relationships can be found by looking elsewhere in the Bible (although many have argued we’ve misread those passages as well), but any attempt to establish legal “personhood” at conception requires inferring something which is far from explicit in the Bible.

So what gives?  With these campaigning points, how on earth did the Republican Party achieve such a near monopoly on the voting loyalties of a population which considers themselves devout followers of Jesus?  To understand how this incongruous conflation of values occurred, you have to go back to the defeat of Barry Goldwater in the presidential election of 1964.  For the first time since the end of the civil war, a Republican presidential candidate carried five of the Deep South states (even though that was all he carried besides his home state of Arizona), inspiring Richard Nixon in the next election to employ a tactic people would later dub “the Southern Strategy.” Nixon’s strategy so effectively won the Southern white vote that Dixieland went from being a “Solid South” for the Democrats to being solid red for the next fifty years (as it is still today).  What the Republican Party did was tap into the white South’s deep-seated racism and anti-federalism* (the latter arguably being a product of the former) in order to capitalize on their disapproval of Lyndon Johnson’s Great Society.  Because the Democratic Party aligned itself with the progressive social reforms of the civil rights movement, Southern whites flocked to the GOP en masse, bringing with them both their strong tendency toward Christian fundamentalism and their equally strong disdain for “the negro.”  Unfortunately for the Republicans, they also brought with them a sectarian faith which greatly disapproved of Catholicism, thereby threatening to undermine the party’s numerical leverage at the national level.  Evangelical distrust toward Catholics ran so deep that John F. Kennedy had to make a special trip to the Greater Houston Ministerial Association just to assure them that he would keep matters of the state utterly separate from the matters of his Church.  That famous speech helped settle a key issue in his campaign without which he may never have won the 1960 election.  But this alone wasn’t enough to forge a lasting alliance between Catholics and Evangelicals (particularly the Baptists, who together with the Catholics still make up the two dominant religious subcultures in America).

Enter Paul Weyrich.  Have you ever heard of ALEC, the Heritage Foundation, or the Moral Majority?  Did you know that all three of those powerhouses of conservative politics were founded by the same guy?  Weyrich was an archconservative with a caustic personality who orchestrated one of the most effective coups of American political influence in recent history.  Randall Ballmer recounts that Weyrich had tried for years to mobilize Evangelicals over issues like school prayer and abortion, but their separationist theology disinclined them to get involved in politics.  Abortion had already congealed Catholic voters (who traditionally oppose even birth control), but the Baptists just didn’t see what the fuss was about.  W.A. Criswell, often called “the patriarch” of the Southern Baptist Convention’s “Conservative Resurgence” (or “Fundamentalist Takeover,” depending on which side you take) and the man Billy Graham called his pastor, offered the following response to Roe v. Wade:

I have always felt that it was only after a child was born and had a life separate from its mother that it became an individual person, and it has always, therefore, seemed to me that what is best for the mother and for the future should be allowed.

In the absence of any clear biblical pronouncement about fetal stages or timeline of “personhood,” most Evangelicals just didn’t have strong feelings about the matter.  What did get them riled up, however, was when in 1975 the IRS revoked the tax exempt status of Bob Jones University because their segregationist school admissions policies violated the Supreme Court’s 1972 Green v Connally decision, which ruled that any institution that practiced segregation was not a charitable institution and therefore no longer qualified for tax exempt status.  This move both challenged Southern Evangelicals’ racism and simultaneously hit them where it hurt—in the pocketbook.  Just as Nixon’s strategists had done a few years earlier in the wake of Johnson’s Great Society, Weyrich saw a golden opportunity here to weave together an alliance of Evangelicals around a common cause.  Once Weyrich had amassed sufficient financial support, he tapped Jerry Falwell of Thomas Road Baptist Church to become the mouthpiece of the newly formed “Moral Majority” (a term Weyrich coined himself).

After energizing Evangelicals over government intrusion into their “religious liberties,” Falwell saw an opportunity to unite Catholics and Evangelicals into a much more powerful unit than either could ever hope to be separately over another issue which he felt could have even greater traction in the growing culture wars.  He quickly used the momentum of Weyrich’s financial backers (lead, ironically, by the Coors family) to launch a nationwide media blitz calling for unity among Christians of all demoninations around “the sanctity of life” (with a side of anti-homosexuality and anti-feminism).  Before the Republican convention even took place, Falwell announced his support for the presidential candidacy of pro-life Ronald Reagan, and subsequently poured $10 million into radio and TV ads asking churches to mobilize in support for him in the 1980 election.  Reagan handily won two-thirds of the white Evangelical vote, thus cementing a pro-life stance in the Republican platform for many years to come. Through the work of the Moral Majority (along with several other organizations Weyrich created), the Republican Party acquired a firm grip on the loyalties of the much-flattered Evangelicals, who quickly came to cherish their special place at the table of national politics.  Falwell’s organization fizzled by the time the Clinton era rolled around, but the marriage of white Evangelicals to the GOP has endured through many election cycles and continues to guide conservative politics in America today.

That at least partially explains how abortion and gay marriage went from being matters of sectarian religious faith to being shibboleths of a national party which prides itself on limiting government and “getting the government out of people’s business.”  But how does cutting assistance to the poor fit into this?  And why haven’t Evangelicals demanded that their favored party take more responsibility for advancing those concerns which more centrally concerned the founder of their religion?  I’ll write about that in my next post :)

_______

* I’m here using the term “anti-federalism” according to its earlier meaning, which signified an emphasis on states’ rights as over against the Federal government.  Over time, the term has changed meaning for some to indicate almost the exact opposite.  

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About Neil Carter

I wear many hats (and none of them pay well!): I am a school teacher, a tutor, a personal trainer, a supplement pusher, a driving instructor, a swim coach, and a father. I also help moderate a growing discussion group of more than 400 atheists in Mississippi and I’ve recently started a more public forum for anyone interested in discussing issues related to skepticism and/or life in the Deep South.

  • http://humanistfox.wordpress.com humanistfox

    Reblogged this on Humanist Fox.

  • ctcss

    And, to me, all this just points out the fact that many religious groups, who should be entirely focused about one’s individual relationship with God, have sadly been infiltrated by worldly concerns and focuses. So even though believers and non-believers should find themselves merely “agreeing to disagree” about the question of God’s existence, they instead find themselves mired in political battles instead. (Whose group wins, whose group’s ox is gored, who’s group gets to sit at the higher table, etc.)

    So the God question (which should be all about the spiritual side of things) becomes hostage to the worldly side of things where tribalism and political power are the coin of the realm. In other words, the religious groups who have become focused on the worldly aspects of life have simply become “groups”.

    Which is why believers and non-believers shouldn’t be waging any battles over God’s existence. Not unless the God being worshiped looks an awful lot like human tendencies at their worst.

    So each believer should really ask themselves, what is the nature of the God they are worshiping? Because if the qualities of God are indistinguishable from the qualities of humans seeking to exercise power over each other and over the limited material resources and goodies of the world, perhaps a re-evaluation of what one is actually worshiping is in order.

  • http://mindfuldigressions.com Doobster418

    This is an excellent, well-researched, well-reasoned, and provocative post. I’m looking forward to reading your next post.

  • Gra*ma Banana

    Love the historical perspective! (I read ” Wrapped in the Flag ” by Claire Connor and she brings the interesting perspective of the John Birch Society which, to my mind, was where a lot of this political blending with religion began. The JBS somehow lost favor, funding, and fealty because of their ultra extreme stance. I have also observed that there is always a bell curve to extremism.) Bringing Catholics and other Christian religions together in a ‘Christian Coalition’ was a stroke of genius on Paul Weyrich’s part. Neil, you have stirred up another ‘pot of controversy’ here and I’m looking forward to future comments and your next post.

  • Esther O’Reilly

    I just have one question that occurs to me after reading this. But first I have an anecdote. One of my best friends, a brilliant guy who works in statistical analysis but could have gotten a degree and a job in just about any field he chose—last year, he said this to me: “No matter what political affiliation you are, we can all agree that Obama is terrible.” This guy is an atheist who describes himself as a liberal (though he leans pro-life). He just happens to think Obama is steering us toward a national disaster from the perspective of sound economics. I might add that he’s not alone among smart Democrats who enthusiastically backed Obama for President and now quite literally want their money back. Without getting bogged down in the myriad other issues these questions raise, what do you make of just that? The fact that the Democrat party, as it now stands and is led, is raising solid, practical red flags for people who wouldn’t be caught dead voting for Romney?

    • https://plus.google.com/105071434209786672462 Karen Hardin

      I think that your statistical friend and a lot of other people on all sides overestimate President Obama’s ability to steer anything with the amount of sabotage that the Tea Party is waging against anyone’s ability to actually govern and that the people in charge of both major parties are actually supporting programs for Big Business at the expense of the people.

      Me I am just hoping we get through the next three years without a serious assassination attempt.

      Also with regards to the Democrats, having problems with where their party is going, just because there a a lot of them doesn’t mean they all don’t like it for the same reasons. For example, take the Affordable Care Act, many Republicans were touting the fact that there are some Democrats who don’t like it, per the polls. But you really have to look at why a the Democrats don’t like it. Unlike most Republicans who don’t like it because it is

      “Socialized Medicine”, many Democrats don’t like it because it isn’t “Medicare for All” (have a single payer), both of which would bring it closer to actual socialized medicine.

    • MIchael E

      Let it be clear, Obama has exactly 0% influence on our economy since the stimulus four years ago. 0%. Any idea that he has had has been flatly stonewalled by the conservatives in the House. When he had a Democratic Congress, we got measures that turned our economy from free fall to slow growth. Everyone agrees that the terrible sequester costs about 1% on the unemployment rate.

      Even extremely pragmatic efforts like extending UE for the unemployed are blocked by Republicans. We could fund it with tax break cuts to the oil companies and billionaires but we can’t even do that.

      • bonnie

        IMO the greatest issue we have with our president is his inability to reach across the aisle and make deals. The thing that makes a great leader is being able to bring all sides together and get a deal that’s good for everyone. House and Congress may bicker but it’s Obama’s job to get them working together.

        Things he’s personally done that hurt the economy…

        - stopped the pipeline despite overwhelming bipartisan support (he’s been delaying voting despite the democrats’ support of it)

        - shut down Yucca Mountain, making it impossible to create new nuclear energy in US (it suspended nuclear reactor licensing)

        - raised taxes on the middle class (ACA)

        We still do not have a balanced budget. Printing money and taking out more debt instead of balancing your checkbook… those things hurt the economy too. Clinton was the last president to get a balanced budget. And Obama promised to do the same…

        I’d actually argue his stimulus had less impact on the economy than the above stated does.

        ACA has hurt our economy too. How many companies are no longer hiring for full time positions? Or moving people to part time jobs? Obama admitted this was a problem in his debate with Romney.

    • Adam

      What kind of comment is this? This just sounds like another political rant from a right winger who doesn’t like the president. Please tell me what decisions the president has made that is causing this country so much harm. Is it not congress that has been trying to sabotage our credit rating and not investing any money when we are in a recession. Who controls the pocketbook?

      • Esther O’Reilly

        It is in fact true that I have no very great sentimental attachment to our President, but I’ve said very little about what I personally think of Obama. I don’t really see the point of doing so here. I was merely asking why Neil thought it was that so many Democrats, including my friend, were so unimpressed with Obama. It seemed pertinent to his post.

        • Adam

          How can you say you didn’t give your opinion of the President when you just did in your ramblings about him being an atheist blah blah. You are such a joke. You are what we consider to be a troll. You post a bunch of nonsense and just sit back and watch people get pissed at the nonsense you spout. Why don’t you take your comments elsewhere.

          • Esther O’Reilly

            LOL. I was saying my friend is an atheist, which you could tell by the fact that I said he’s liberal but leans pro-life, which doesn’t describe Obama. Take a sip of water and read more slowly sir. :-)

    • http://godlessindixie.wordpress.com godlessindixie

      First of all, I should note that instead of interacting with my criticisms of the GOP, you changed the subject entirely to talking about someone else. Since you consider yourself to be an apologist of sorts, and have already informed me of your philosophical education, you already know that whenever someone begins by changing the subject entirely, something is up. I said nothing about Democrats and mentioned Obama once without asserting anything about him. Have you already concluded that the only alternative to supporting the GOP is to be a Democrat?

      Now as to your question, you haven’t really explained HOW the President is steering us toward a national disaster, so I don’t even know what we’re discussing. Can you be a little more specific?

      • Esther O’Reilly

        Well, you seemed to think that the Democrats had the best ideas for helping the poor, sick, elderly etc., implying that people who opposed them were “against helping the poor.” I was pointing out that not all Democrats agree that a vote for the Democrats is a vote for helping the poor, particularly under the Obama administration.

        With regard to Obama, I think one need only look at the roll-out of Obamacare and the wildly increased spending in general to see what I mean. I’m not an economist, but I can sense things are going in a bad direction, and I was simply quoting my friend who is an expert on these things and agrees. If you’re asking whether I trust the Republicans to save the day, I’ll answer honestly that I think there are no solutions. But even if there’s no obvious right path, there can still be an obvious WRONG path. But honestly, my intention was not to launch a debate. In a nutshell, my question was do you agree that opposing the Democrat party’s current solutions for helping the poor doesn’t automatically make you “anti-poor”?

        • Adam

          From where I am sitting the ACA, while having a rough roll out is now working well within parameters set by its designers. It is processing applications and over 3 million people have been signed up for private insurance, not including the millions eligible for medicaid.. We must all understand that in the end these were problems with a website, and were very fixable and have been fixed. This is not incompetence, as much as it was just some bad management of a system build, which happens all the time in private businesses. All of these things are fixable and do not change the effectiveness of the law. As for spending increases, I would counter that argument, because while the ACA does increase spending, it was also designed with various funding mechanisms to pay for itself. Unlike many governmental programs put in place by Republicans that were completely unfunded. Just look at Medicare part D as a recent example.

          Lastly, I would challenge you not to watch Fox News to get your news. Most likely this friend of yours doesn’t exist and is basically you taking talking points from some so called expert on Faux News.

          • Esther O’Reilly

            I assure you my friend is quite real and hates Fox News. We were doing an independent workshop on probability theory at the time we had that conversation. I’ve learned a lot from him. Also, I don’t have cable and rarely watch newscasting of any kind.

          • Bonnie

            ACA has made it so I can’t afford insurance for my family of 5. Our premiums went up 30% and our deductible tripled. It’s more cost effective for me to pay the fine and pay for care out of pocket then sign up. You don’t have to watch Fox news when you live the reality of it.

            Saying that someone is making things up because you don’t agree with them shows a lack of desire for truth.

        • Bonnie

          We have a classic case of bloated government. Over spending, way over debt, an entitled population and no clear leadership from either side. We’re screwed imo. I can’t believe there are still people that support Obama but I guess there were still republicans that supported Bush in the end. There will always be ‘those’ kind of people.

    • bonnie

      My father is a respected economist, worked in the field for several decades and now teaches at various universities and he agrees with your friend ;) haha.

      I hate the GOP and I’m an agnostic but I believe in small government 100%. Our government was out of control under Bush and now it’s sliding off the rails under Obama. I worry about what will be left for my children.

  • David W

    Interesting post. It is sad to consider how easily most people can be manipulated into supporting things which are against their core values and even their personal interest; fear of ‘the other’ is an amazingly effective tool.

    I do in general disagree with much of the Republican platform, but, this doesn’t leave me embracing the Democrats.

    It is patently obvious that most, probably all, in political office are most interested in power and money for themselves and their friends; occasionally they *might* consider how to help others.

    I can’t fathom how people can be so in love with one party or the other when it is clear that both parties are in love with money and power over all else.

  • MIchael E

    The more intensely religion a politician is, the more likely he/she is to be anti-Jesus. How have they done this? They have come up with the whole notion of personal responsibility which trumps every responsibility that we as individuals might have. Do people need food? Of course not because their own lack of responsibility has put them in a position to be a hungry. So cutting back on foodstamps will only help them be more responsible. Do the unemployed need help? Of course not. We need to teach them to be personally responsible for their plight. They’re probably Godless or Democrats anyways. Do woman need birth control. Nope. If they were personally responsible they wouldn’t need to have sex anyways. It has become part of their theology and the way for them to bridge and rationalize their own lack of willingness to help with the pain that they are inflicting on those that need their help.

    • Bonnie

      So where do you draw the line. At what point to you tell people they need to be responsible for their own lives? Where does it stop?

  • Garrett Glass

    Great post. I wonder what your views are on the prosperity gospel and the pop psychology sold as religion by luminaries such as Joel Osteen. Do these developments parallel the shift of Evangelicals to the Republican Party? If so, it suggests that the relationship between the two did nothing except corrupt the Evangelicals – they lost sight of religion an began focusing, even in the pulpit, on the Republican political agenda.

    • Esther O’Reilly

      Osteen published his first book in 2004, but the prosperity gospel goes back decades before. (Jimmy Swaggart, etc.) I will say that a lot of mainstream evangelicals today are turned off by the prosperity gospel. Osteen is actually a favorite punching bag in conservative circles. So I’m not sure how much of a correlation you’d find anymore.

      • dave warnock

        Make no mistake, Joel Osteen, Joyce Meyer, Benny Hinn, and others of that persuasion, are hugely influential in charismatic/evangelical circles. And they are exporting their garbage overseas in a big way- especially to Africa. Yes, Osteen is an easy target, but he still pastors the largest church in America and sells thousands of books. They have a huge voice, merely because of the numbers of people they influence. This tribe has undergone a re-branding of sorts over the years, where the message is not so much about just money. Their message has morphed over the years where it’s really simply that God is your cosmic bell-hop and will do whatever you tell him to do- jobs, healing, marriages restored, etc. Whatever you need, he is there to give it to you if you only just believe, pray in Jesus’s name, and support our ministry.

        And it didn’t originate with Jimmy Swaggart- he was old line Pentecostal (though quite prosperous- at least until he got caught with a prostitute). These roots go back to men like Oral Roberts and Kenneth Hagin.

        • http://gravatar.com/mikespeir mikespeir

          Indeed, Jimmy Swaggart explicitly distanced himself from the prosperity Gospel. Which isn’t to say that he didn’t say some things that sounded very much like it and at one time he probably had in fact embraced it.

  • http://cbunch0.wordpress.com Chad Bunch

    As much as I have enjoyed all of your posts, I think this one may be my favorite. I look forward to the follow-up. I would still like to see a post in the future touching on why you believe that Jesus of the bible existed and the comment debates that would result from the post.

    • http://godlessindixie.wordpress.com godlessindixie

      Thanks, and I haven’t forgotten :)

      I’ll write on that eventually, but the honest truth is that I’ve still got more thinking and reading to do on that subject. I’m sure the debate could be interesting, though. I’ve got it on my radar.

  • https://www.facebook.com/william.bivens.77 W Steve Bivens

    Jesus is a composite mythological figure. He never existed. Ascribing charcteristics or positions to him is like saying Santa Clause is fat and wants all little girls & boys to be good. It is craziness.

  • http://iamchristianiamanatheist.blogspot.kr/ Christian Kemp

    I enjoyed this post as it really shows how the Christian fundamentalists have hijacked a party for their use when in fact it is nothing like Jesus at all.

  • http://imnotherzog.wordpress.com Fake Herzog

    This entire post is ridiculous — you’ve constructed one big straw man argument (in addition to mischaracterizing conservative Republican policies). The fact that Jesus warned individuals not to prize wealth over God and the fact that the Bible in general encouraged the faithful to help those in need does not mean that is the equivalent of government action. Coercing someone to give to the poor is not the same thing as that person freely giving their money to the poor out of concern and love for their fellow man.

    Now, I’m no anarchist and admit that it is perfectly legitimate to use the government to work for the common good — and that might include welfare for the truly needy. But what that welfare looks like (is it federal? is it state? county? city? township? etc.), how it is administered, who pays for it and how, etc., etc. are all questions of prudence and people of goodwill can agree to disagree on how best to create a welfare program (or any other government program to help someone in need).

  • Bonnie

    I hate what Christian fundamentalists have done to the GOP. They’re a train wreck and I highly doubt they will survive much longer.

    However, I would disagree that the liberal party espouses more “Christ like” behavior. The redistribution of wealth to those who are entitled simply because they are below a certain income level isn’t moral. It’s forced charity through a government medium and so LITTLE of it actually goes to helping the poor. The liberal party doesn’t care about helping people anyway. Just like the GOP, it says and does what will get the votes and donations.

    • Esther O’Reilly

      “They’re a train wreck and I highly doubt they will survive much longer.”

      With all those kids, I doubt your doubt. ;-)

      • Bonnie

        :) haha you may be right. I’m teaching, at the moment a family of 11 kids and that size is not unusual here in Idaho. Our family is considered odd cause we stopped at ’3′ and are ‘still so young’…

        I guess it’s more the issue of the huge split among conservatives as to HOW conservative the GOP should be that I’m referencing. It already is almost like a two party ‘party’ with tea partiers and moderates bickering about everything.

  • dave warnock

    Frank Schaefer has some great insight on the marriage of the Religious Right with the Republican party. His excellent book, “Crazy for God” details his involvement- along with his mother and father- Frances and Edith, in the formation of that movement.

  • http://letterstomydistantfather.wordpress.com The Prodigal Son

    While I’m not an American I do live in the U.S. and it’s always interesting to read about the history behind the very divided politics in this country. I often find that the Christianity practiced in many parts of the world is very different from what the Bible both preaches and portrays. Usually whatever brand of Christianity one finds is a chimera of local politics and traditions and whatever the people have heard about the Bible that they like. Humans as a whole can’t resist the urge to customise, for better or worse.

  • http://rolltodisbelieve.wordpress.com Captain Cassidy

    Meanwhile, the Republican Party is quite happy to ignore all their tough talk when it comes down to their own lives being impacted by an unwanted pregnancy or unhappy marriage–as so many Republicans from Sandford to DesJarlais have shown us. It’s only OK if you’re Republican; the only moral abortion is their abortion. Ugh. What an interesting world it’d be if the GOP were actually Christlike–or really if most Christians were.

    I seriously doubt most Christians understand where their anti-abortion stance comes from. It’s definitely not because Jesus told them to be that way. It’s nothing but the rankest and cruelest of all political expediency: votes gotten on the misery and backs of poor and disadvantaged women, power gained at the expense of those most vulnerable. Sickening, truly. I’m glad this thinking is sputtering out. It’s almost comical now to see Republicans try to talk to women–the gaslighting that happens constantly and the slut-shaming and madonna-whore complexing. They really have no idea how real women think anymore, after so many years in the Fox Bubble. The next election cycle should be interesting; I just wonder how long it’ll take for the GOP to figure out we’re not interested in what they’re selling and that there just won’t be a magic incantation that makes women okay with being treated like chattel and farm animals.

  • Pingback: How the GOP Convinced Evangelicals to Neglect the Poor | godless in dixie


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