When is a religion not a religion?

Caryn Riswold has some fun with right-wing pundits’ laughable game of heads-we-win, tails-you-lose — “Meet the NotReligions: Christianity, Islam, and …?

Riswold notes Fox News host Bill O’Reilly’s recent claim that Christianity is not a religion, but a “philosophy,” as well as the claim by Mat Staver of Liberty University that Islam is not a religion, but a “political ideology.”

To make sense of this, understand that O’Reilly and Staver are both trying to justify Christian privilege. They want the free exercise clause of the First Amendment to apply to Christianity, and exclusively to Christianity (and maybe Jews, too, if they behave). And they want the no establishment clause of the First Amendment to apply to every religion except for Christianity.

Thus when O’Reilly is confronted with a situation in which civil authorities seem to be privileging Christianity in violation of the establishment clause, he makes the weird claim that Christianity is “not a religion.”

But that won’t keep O’Reilly from loudly defending the “religious” freedom of any Christians, should their free exercise be constrained in any way (even hypothetically).

This is similar to the popular theocratic game of pretending that secular government is, itself, a religion. Government cannot be secular, this “argument” says, because that would constitute an establishment of the “religion” of secularism. But of course the Christianists making this argument are not consistent in their logic. At the same time they argue that secularism is a “religion” that cannot be established, they insist that secular people have no free exercise rights because such people have no religion.

Staver is dealing with the opposite situation from O’Reilly. He’s trying to deny that Muslims have the constitutional right to the free exercise of their religion, so he makes the absurd claim that Islam isn’t really a religion.

When the subject is, instead, the supposed threat of “Sharia” law, of course, Staver reverses himself and shouts that it constitutes an attempt to establish religion in violation of the First Amendment.

The self-contradiction is necessary for Staver. When Muslims seek the constitutional right to free exercise, he wants to deny it to them by pretending that Islam is merely a “political ideology.” But if it’s a “political ideology,” then there’s no constitutional reason that Sharia law could not be legislated in America.

It’s difficult to tell whether Staver is just an appallingly cynical liar and bigot, or if he really is this stupid.

Probably both, but either ought to disqualify him from serving as dean of the Liberty University Law School.

As John Fea writes:

There are a lot of good and thoughtful teachers and scholars who work at Liberty University.  It is time for these cooler heads to prevail and do something about the Dean of the Law School, Mat Staver.

Maybe that’s too generous to Liberty. We’ll find out based on whether or not the school is willing to do anything to rein in — or rid itself of — this dishonest idiot.

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  • hidden_urchin

    Is it wrong of me to want someone at the IRS to respond to this?  I’m thinking something like, “Christianity is not a religion? That’s news to us.  I guess we’ll have to revoke the religious institution tax exemption then.” My bet is that Christianity would become a religion again right quick.

  • Lori

     

    Is it wrong of me to want someone at the IRS to respond to this?

    No. No, it is not.

    O’Reilly is trying to have his cake and eat it too and it’s perfectly reasonable to want him to choke on it.

  • http://www.seven-sigma.com/ Jeff Dickey

    Agreed. And choking is a lot more likely if we not-so-secretly replace his cake’s flour with cement. That ought to take care of it.

    I’d love to see someone at IRS or FCC or wherever grab onto this and refuse to let go of it until either there are Consequences to O’Reilly or he makes a humiliating, extensively-detailed and -self-incriminating apology. Progressives are used to getting smacked down; blowhards like Billy O, not so much. Somebody really needs to run some karma over all the rabid dogma out there.

  • Carstonio

    Uh, doesn’t Liberty University exist solely to train young fundamentalists to push US government toward theocracy, like Regent University and Patrick Henry College? 

  • Tricksterson

    I think he’s being sarcastic.  Or it could be Fred’s sometimes annoying habit of giving people the benefit of the doubt even when they don’t deserve it.

  • Carstonio

    Fred is technically right that whether Staver’s problem is bigotry or stupidity, that ought to disqualify him from serving as dean of the Liberty law school. But that doesn’t go far enough. I’m tempted to say that his problem should disqualify him from practicing law at all. But the real issue is that there shouldn’t be a Liberty University, at least with its current mission.

  • http://lliira.dreamwidth.org/ Lliira

    Or it could be Fred’s sometimes annoying habit of giving people the benefit of the doubt even when they don’t deserve it.

    Well, he’s Christian. It’s always weird to see someone in the U.S. who is loud about their Christianity act the way Jesus said people were supposed to act, but Fred does it. This give-everyone-the-benefit-of-the-doubt-no-matter-what thing is one of the reasons I’m not Christian any longer, as doing that caused me and others severe harm and only helped horrible people continue to be horrible,  but I do admire the fact that Fred is not a hypocrite.

    It could also be his sense of humor. Sometimes it’s so dry it’s impossible to tell that it’s humor. 

  • LL

    Yeah, this. 

  • Guest

    Didn’t O’Reilly take that back?

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=553145445 Gordon Duffy

     In response to a complete dismissal by Fox’s resident Catholic Priest, Bill reluctantly conceded that christianity was a religion and a philosophy.

  • http://eternalbookshelf.wordpress.com/ Ani Sharmin

    To make sense of this, understand that O’Reilly and Staver are both trying to justify Christian privilege. They want the free exercise clause of the First Amendment to apply to Christianity, and exclusively to Christianity (and maybe Jews, too, if they behave). And they want the no establishment clause of the First Amendment to apply to every religionexcept for Christianity.

    This, exactly!

  • AnonymousSam

    Bread goes in, toast comes out! You can’t explain that!

  • http://twitter.com/FearlessSon FearlessSon

    Bread goes in, toast comes out! You can’t explain that!

    Let me introduce you to Knowledgeable Neil.  

  • stardreamer42

    Staver’s statement should be enough to get the accreditation withdrawn from Liberty University’s school of law.  Frankly, I don’t know how Liberty got (or keeps) the accreditation necessary to call itself a “university” in the first place; I was given to understand* that the regulations about that were fairly stringent. But maybe that’s the problem — more deregulation!

    * I was living in Nashville during the period when David Lipscomb College applied to become David Lipscomb University, and there was some discussion about the matter among various academics I knew.

  • http://tellmewhytheworldisweird.blogspot.com/ perfectnumber628

    I think it was last week I watched a video online where O’Reilly was emphatically stating that “Christianity is not a religion.” I was like, wow that’s a new one. I’m pretty sure Christianity is a religion…

  • lowtechcyclist

    “It’s difficult to tell whether Staver is just an appallingly cynical liar and bigot, or if he really is this stupid.

    Probably both, but either ought to disqualify him from serving as dean of the Liberty University Law School.”

    Doesn’t it take both attributes to qualify one for a position at Falwell U.?

  • Magic_Cracker

    There are a lot of good and thoughtful teachers and scholars who work at Liberty University.

    And as a former educator, I can tell you that has fuck all to do with administrators, no matter the school. Still, the statement implies that Liberty U is anything other than a credentialing agency for people who want to destroy our civil secular society from within — which it isn’t.

  • Magic_Cracker

    Someone needs to remind Bill O. and Mat that philosophy is a walk on the slippery rocks. Religion is a smile on a dog.

    Hope that clarifies.

  • galactica_actual

    They’re not aware of too many things.

    They know what they know, if you know what I mean.

  • http://www.seven-sigma.com/ Jeff Dickey

    The dangerous part is that they’re most certain that they know what they in fact do not know because it’s provably false… and the longer that people and institutions take them seriously, the deeper trouble we’re all in.

  • Consumer Unit 5012

     In the words of Ivan Stang, “They DON’T mean well, and they AREN’T stupid.”

  • JustoneK

    wat.

  • Carstonio

     Heh! I remember a radio station satirizing that song with Popeye as the singer (because of the chorus) and Bluto jeering.

  • Jeff Weskamp

    People like O’Reilly want Christianity to be in a strange quantum state where it simultaneously is and is not a religion, enjoying the benefits of both conditions and none of the drawbacks of either.

  • Makabit

    Moreover, they want Islam to be in the same boat, except it experiences the drawbacks of both conditions, and none of the benefits of either.

  • Tricksterson

    No wonder they supported Quantum Mitt then.

  • http://www.seven-sigma.com/ Jeff Dickey

    As organised opposition to same, I propose The League to Free Schrödinger’s Cat. People with enough intelligence and education to get the joke ought to at least do a double-take and potentially get interested, and the Fox viewers will get a free laugh. Everybody wins!

  • http://mousehole-mouse.blogspot.com/?zx=899fdf7701a6708f Mouse

    Ellanjay make a similar argument in the Left Behind: the kids series in which one of the RTCs says this headslapper of a statement: “Christianity is not a religion, it’s a relationship with God through Christ.”

  • http://www.seven-sigma.com/ Jeff Dickey

    So, given that I’m never ever going to even seriously consider inflicting the kids’ series on myself, how did that character define a religion? “Belief in some magical God-that-isn’t-God that makes you do crazy things?” That’d be too close to home for a lot of people — in any religion, but especially Republicanism, I would think.

  • Nicanthiel

    It’s usually fundie-speak for “Catholics (and often mainstream Protestants) aren’t really Christians because they don’t have a personal relationship with Jeebus like  we [we = X tiny denomination of fundie Protestants that speaker belongs to] do. They’re a ‘religion,’ just going through the motions.”

  • Carstonio

     That would have gone over my head – I might have assumed that most Christians would say they have that relationship.

  • Sgt. Pepper’s Bleeding Heart

    That would have gone over my head – I might have assumed that most Christians would say they have that relationship.

    “Personal relationship with Jesus” and “accept Jesus as your personal Lord and saviour” are particularly evangelical phrases.

  • Tricksterson

    I believe the way it was phrased was “Religion is man reaching out (or up) to God, Christianity God reaching out (or down) to man.”  Make of that what you will.

  • Victor

    Fred! You’re not helping matter here! As a matter of fact and “IT” does matter Fred that when some of your human being sarcastic remarks cells which are butt a spec of what you think about the University, I mean the universe. Any WAY, your thoughts sometimes are only annoying habits of giving people the benefit of the doubt when they don’t deserve “IT”  Fred. Bread goes in and then toast comes out! “IT” needs no splainin if ya know what “I” mean?  Come on so you must stop “IT” Fred. NOW! “IT” is just a matter of perspective cause if someone needs to remind Bill O. and Mat that philosophy is a walk on the slippery rocks the Religion is butt a smile on a dog butt humans will need a Magic Cracker to understand what is being said. Right folks? :(
     
     http://www.splendoroftruth.com/curtjester/2012/12/mercedez-benz-m-class-popemobile/#comments
     
    I hear ya! Mind if we human being ask who’s commenting here, is “IT” Victor and/or simply sinner vic who thinks that he owns 92% of Victor’s Universal flesh? :)
     
     
     

  • ReverendRef

    To make sense of this, understand that O’Reilly and Staver are both trying to justify Christian privilege . . .

    How small their faith must be to attempt having Christianity embedded into society by force.  I could go on a rant about what faith is and isn’t, but it most certainly is NOT beating people over the head with a Scofield Reference Bible and dragging them to church to show what good work you’re doing for God.

    And, as Mouse pointed out from the LB Kids’ series, if “Christianity is not a religion, it’s a relationship with God through Christ,” then who really cares?  If it’s personal, it’s personal and leave them alone.

    Oh, wait . . . it’s only personal if it meets the RTC Approved Behavior List. 

    I need to go find a wall.

  • http://blog.trenchcoatsoft.com Ross

     Even when I was very very young, I had a hard time getting my mind around most forms of bigotry. I mean, I could just about grok the idea of having an instinctive knee-jerk aversion to something. I mean, I was a kid, I had instinctive knee-jerk aversions to things all the time. But when you got to the point of wanting to use the law to enforce a bigotry, that just made no sense. I mean, if you thought that men were inherently superior to women or white people were inherently superior to black people or straight people were inherently superior to non-straight people, why in the world would you feel the need to have the law give your team an advantage? Surely, if you really were inherently superior, there was no need for that — your white-straight-male-ness would give you advantages over everyone else, so why would you want the law to be rigged to give you *extra* advantages?

  • PatBannon

    The theory being, why not? Might as well, if you have the ability to.

  • Victor

    (((I need to go find a wall.)))

    Hey ReverendRef can you ask the wall to say a prayer for Victor so that he soons learn the truth about http://www.catholic.com/tracts/adam-eve-and-evolution

    Don’t be silly sinner vic! You can’t fool U>S (usual sinners) cause there’s no WAY that you can pray to a wall unless “IT” is a Religion. Right folks? :)

    I hear ya Lord! Careful Victor cause your French is starting to show NOW. :(

     http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=U0t4VYyiKNM&list=AL94UKMTqg-9AO9M8OmvX5V_ynAtQEJEfG&index=10

    Peace

  • http://lliira.dreamwidth.org/ Lliira

    I need to go find a wall.

    To write on, I hope.

  • ReverendRef

     I was thinking more along the lines of banging my head against it.  But maybe writing something might help as well.

  • http://www.seven-sigma.com/ Jeff Dickey

    Take a nice soft pillow with you, Rev. O’Reilly already does enough violence to our brains…

  • Dantesque17

    I may be giving Bill O’Reilly too much credit here, but is it possible he meant that Christianity is too broad a term for a religion?  Maybe his point was that Catholicism and Presbyterianism are religions because they’re philosophies about God are distinct and narrow, while the word “Christianity” is more of an umbrella term. 

    I think it would be difficult to argue that Christianity itself is merely a philosophy rather than a religion, since the divinity of Christ is woven into its other aspects.  If you accept the basic tenets of Christ’s philosophy but deny His divinity, then what would you call yourself?  Does such a thing exist today?

  • Patrick Ingram

    I’ve heard plenty of people describe Buddhism as a “philosophy” and it doesn’t make any more sense there. One problem is that the word “religion” (like “game” or “art”) is notoriously difficult to define. Everyone has their own definitions, but there’s far more argument than for most words.

    Some people just think a religion needs God in it, ignoring those religions where belief in God is optional. Granted, the distinction between “religion” and “philosophy” is often quite blurry, yet almost everyone considers Christianity, Islam, Buddhism, etc. to be religions.

    I love the quote, “[Blank] is not a religion, but a relationship with God”. I wonder if they realize it’s saying, “[Blank] is not a religion, but rather it is a religion”.

  • http://www.oliviareviews.com/ PepperjackCandy

    When it’s a jar?

  • http://www.seven-sigma.com/ Jeff Dickey

    ISTR someone making a serious effort to organise a “religion”, or at least a 501(c)(3) “study” gravy train, around Jar Jar Binks.

    (It’s going to take me days to wipe that voice out of the back of my mind now.)

  • Tricksterson

    I believe “jedi” os a registered religion in Britain.

  • Leum

    It’s really common for people not to want their beliefs associated with the label “religion.” You see it with Christians, with Buddhists, and probably with other groups too. I personally think that Alcoholics Anonymous qualifies as a religion (it’s a spiritual program that’s about your relationship to a higher power with regular meetings with other people on the same spiritual path) and the AAers I know have always vehemently denied it even though I see no reason to.

  • EllieMurasaki

    Hm. I’d call AA religious but not a religion in itself–participants might after all be Christian or Jewish or Hindu.

  • Mary Kaye

    “You can only have one religion” is not a universal logical requirement (there’s a cute discussion of this in _Life of Pi_).  Buddhist-and-something and Shinto-and-something are very common combos.  It doesn’t happen as often with Christianity or Islam due to both of those religions being invested in “one true way” thinking, and so a lot of Westerners find it strange.  Members of other cultures don’t necessarily.

    My particular flavor of martial arts comes with some philosophical content that I personally perceive as religious (though my sensei, who is an atheist to the bone, does not).  I have ended up agreeing with her to quietly sit out certain responsive readings which conflict with my main religion, and I work with the rest of it.  I don’t know that I’d call myself a believer, but I’m certainly a practicioner.

    I don’t find a great many things to be contrary to my Paganism.  But I flatly drew the line at a responsive reading which urged us to purge all dark, negative, or sorrowful emotions from our lives.  So we have an agreement that I pick my own readings when it’s my turn to read, and I can avoid ones like that.

  • EllieMurasaki

    I was kind of thinking of it as this Shinto ceremony feels appropriate for this occasion and that Buddhist ceremony feels appropriate for that occasion and the person who does both as a matter of course isn’t really Shinto or really Buddhist but a sort of Shinto-Buddhist hybrid. But being able to be two distinct things at once makes sense, and also the above is me trying to label people who don’t want any of my labeling, isn’t it.

  • http://apocalypsereview.wordpress.com/ Invisible Neutrino

    Syncretist traditions are always interesting. :)

  • Tricksterson

    I thnik most religions are syncretist.  it’s just that some admit it and some don’t.  But then I was raised Catholic (sort of, my family was itself a case study of syncretiam in action) so I had a front row seat to the worlds largest Syncretist religion-in-denial.

  • http://www.facebook.com/christopherthomasfarrell Chris Farrell

    Gen. Douglas McArthur marched the Emperor of Japan at the point of a bayonett to a microphone where the emperor announced over the radio to the people of Japan that he was not a God. At that moment the deification of the Japanese emperor along with the religion constructed around his deification, Shinoism, effectively ceased to exist.

  • EllieMurasaki

    Yeah, that, that obviously explains how on my sister’s trip to Japan a couple years ago the Shinto shrine she visited was all alive and active and shit, not dissimilar in that respect to the Catholic church she attends at home.

    I don’t know jack shit about the history of Shinto in Japan particularly as pertaining to WWII. I certainly don’t know whether the incident you describe ever happened. Hell, I can’t be bothered looking up whether Shinto folk consider their emperor a god at all, and if so, whether that applies before he dies or only afterwards. None of which matters just now, because these people did certainly know that emperors die and that sharp pointy things kill. IF this incident happened and IF Shinto folk consider living emperors gods, I’m betting that the reason Shinto didn’t collapse on the spot (aside from, y’know, thousands of years of history and many other deities and spirits and holidays and traditions) is that THE JAPANESE PEOPLE KNEW THE EMPEROR WAS LYING IN ORDER TO AVOID BEING KILLED ON THE SPOT.

  • Tricksterson

    They used to.  MacArthur did not “march him at the point of a bayonet”.  His declaration of nongodhood was however a feature of the treaty.  Shinto is primarily pantheistic believing that every tree, rock, etc has a divine spirit within it.  Some spirits however are more equal than ohters  The Emperors were   considered to be directly descended from Amaterasu, the sun goddess.

  • EllieMurasaki

    Yeah, I remembered the descended from Amaterasu bit, but divinity before death doesn’t necessarily follow. The relevant point remains that Shinto is alive and well and has recovered from any injury dealt it circa WWII if indeed such injury was ever inflicted.

  • Tricksterson

    That’s not answering the question.

  • Ben English

    For years I’ve seen Bill O’Reilly take some of his more wingnut guests to task for arguing ‘Bible, therefore Law’ by pointing out the establishment clause. He opposes gay marriage but appeals to it based on ‘tradition’ which is, of course, code for “I’m comfortable in my privilege and wealth and fear change.”

    But… every year at Christmas time, it’s like any modicum of reasonable thought just abandons him. What is it about Nativity scenes and Christmas trees that makes him forget his stances through the other eleven months?

  • Lori

     

    What is it about Nativity scenes and Christmas trees that makes him forget his stances through the other eleven months?   

    Ratings.

    The old folks that make up the majority of the Fox audience are the only ones who can remember a time when Christmas displays on public property were considered perfectly normal* and they love to complain about how Those People are ruining Our Country by making it not like The Good Old Days. Bill O figured out a few years ago that his core audience really like a big old outrage hit to go along with their eggnog and he’s been riding his War of Christmas hobby horse all the way to the bank every year since then.

    *One of my favorite scenes in Charlie Wilson’s War is the one where the good old boy from his district gets a meeting with Wilson to complain that his town is being sued by the ACLU for putting up a nativity scene on public property (I can’t remember exactly where, either City Hall of the fire station I think) and he wants Wilson to fix that for him. Charlie points out that the town has some ridiculous number of churches and that they need to movie the nativity to one of them and just let it go. I wish I could find the clip online because it’s amusing.

  • Cathy W

    …and yet even in The Good Old Days of the 1970s, my hometown had a big light up sign that said “Happy Holidays” on the roof of city hall, visible from the freeway. Am I not thinking old enough? Or is it just that as the Fox audience gets older, they’re more willing to believe that the past was what BillO says it was?

  • Lori

    Or is it just that as the Fox audience gets older, they’re more willing to believe that the past was what BillO says it was?  

    I think it’s mostly this, combined with differences in where people grew up and therefore what they see as “normal”.  Some places never really went in for the creche on the city hall lawn and other places did.

    In spite of what the wingers are now trying to sell, “Happy Holidays” is not some new thing, invented by evil multi-culti liberals to dis the baby Jesus. It’s not only been around for a long time, it used to be totally fine with them. It was simply an acknowledgement that the holiday season has more than one holiday, which is true even for fundies since New Year’s come for us all.

  • Tricksterson

    “It’s not only been around for a long time, it used to be totally fine with them.”

    No!  We have always been at war with Eastasia!

    Does anyone else remember back in the 60s, a similar kerfuffle being raised about the use of “Xmas”?

  • http://apocalypsereview.wordpress.com/ Invisible Neutrino

    Does anyone else remember back in the 60s, a similar kerfuffle being raised about the use of “Xmas”?

    Oh, lord, I remember this back in the late 80s or early 90s. Someone wrote a letter to the editor, as I recall, bloviating about the whole “X-mas isn’t the REAL Christmas” deal because ZOMG AN X.

    (it really did boil down to almost that ridiculous of an argument although I’m obviously paraphrasing)

  • Tricksterson

    Yes, I remember my insane grandmother defining it as a Protestant plot (along with the use of “Holy Ghost” instead of “Holy Spirit” and the different way of making the sign of the cross) as way of seducing and corrupting Catholics.

  • EllieMurasaki

    Well, ‘tmas’ wouldn’t suit, too many fonts have the little side bit at the bottom of the vertical bar, and also it doesn’t look like a proper noun should but a capital T doesn’t have any vertical bar above the crossbar.

  • http://apocalypsereview.wordpress.com/ Invisible Neutrino

    The part that amazes me now, looking back, is the idea that a common culturally accepted shorthand for a secularized holiday should be a cause for pearl-clutching fainting-couch concern.

  • http://blog.trenchcoatsoft.com Ross

     My father often says that it seems to him that in his memories of growing up, there was a lot more religious tolerance back in his childhood than there seems to be now — that people did not assume someone was unpatriotic or untrustworthy if they happened to be muslim or atheist or whatnot.

    I think my father is wrong about this in a nostalgia-filtery kind of sense, but I think that while wrong, he’s *close* to right. By which I mean that what he’s actually remembering is a time when the cultural hegemons felt secure enough in their privelege that they didn’t feel the need to turn everything into a culture war. It was okay if they said “Happy holidays” because they knew that “holidays” meant “Christmas. But we’ll throw a bone to the Jews too because we’re feeling generous”. And they didn’t have to get all up in arms if the muslims wanted to build a mosque, because they knew when they sent little Zazu to public school, her teacher was going to say that “Every time a bell rings, an angel gets its wings” and it was a Christian angel they were talking about.

    They didn’t need to make a big show out of protecting their privilege, because they felt secure that the system would protect their privilege for them.

  • AnonymousSam

    Oxygen deprivation. His brain starts to starve because he can’t stop howling about the War On Christmas.

  • http://www.facebook.com/WingedWyrm Charles Scott

    Bare in mind that Scalia had argued that defaulting to crosses for graves didn’t violate the seperation of Church and State because crosses weren’t a religious symbol, but just a symbol of graves.  In a previous article, there was a discussion on how “In God We Trust” was accepted as a National motto for the US and survived challenge merely because it was reasoned to be so pervasive throughout society and so repeated that the phrase had become meaningless.

    When is a religion not a religion?  When it is so pervasive and so engrained into your own world that you do not comprehend that people who don’t share your faith truly exist.  And, when someone threatens that, it’s a war on your belief system.

  • http://eternalbookshelf.wordpress.com/ Ani Sharmin

    To make sense of this, understand that O’Reilly and Staver are both trying to justify Christian privilege. They want the free exercise clause of the First Amendment to apply to Christianity, and exclusively to Christianity (and maybe Jews, too, if they behave). And they want the no establishment clause of the First Amendment to apply to every religion except for Christianity.

    This, exactly. In addition, there’s a significant amount of time spent on trying to explain why Christianity is so very different from all the other religions (sometimes exaggerating the differences) to justify this special treatment for it. So, if they want to say that freedom of religion only applies to Christianity, since Islam is political, then all the stuff in the Bible that has politics, rules, and laws gets ignored. If they want to say that Christianity should be allowed to influence government, they’ll talk about how Christianity has had historical influence, has certain parts that are respected by other religions, etc. as if that isn’t true about other religions as well.

  • The Guest Who Posts

    Whenever I see an Islamophobe claim that Islam isn’t a religion, I wonder why their listeners don’t immediately Godwin the discussion:

    “Argument 1: “You say that religion is a private matter. But you
    fight against the Jewish religion!”
    Counterargument: “Actually,
    the Jewish religion is nothing other than a doctrine to preserve the Jewish
    race.” (Adolf Hitler). – Kurt Hilmar Eitzen, “Zehn Knüppel wider
    die Judenknechte” (Ten Responses to Jewish Lackeys), 1936

  • Hellboy

    Judging from the words spoken by Bill O’Reilly and Jason Bethke; Christianity isn’t a religion, it’s a cult that redefines words like for PR and political purposes.

  • Hellboy

     Dammit, strike the word “like” from that.

    I should do a better job of re-reading before I hit “post.”

  • http://www.facebook.com/christopherthomasfarrell Chris Farrell

    Our Founding Fathers Drew a Line
    in the Sand

     

    The Declaration of Independence begins
    with a preamble under the heading ‘The Unanamous Declaration of the
    Thirteen States of America,’ and continues, “When in the
    Course of human events, It becomes necessary for one people to dissolve the
    political bands which have connected them with another, and to assume among the
    powers of the earth, the separate and equal station to which the laws of Nature
    and of Nature’s God…”, the Lord Jesus Christ, “…entitle
    them, a decent respect to the opinions of mankind requires that they should
    declare the causes which impel them to the separation.”

     

    Said preamble needs now in our time at the helm of our ship of
    state to be amended by the following sentiments inserted after the words ‘which
    have connected them with another’ by extending the wording to address
    the enemy we face today, the murderous cult of Islam, and read as follows:
    ‘…which have connected them with another even to the degree of tolerating
    intolerable ideological or religious beliefs which have and do define
    themselves through the actions of adherents to such beliefs as the enemy of the
    liberty which with we are endowed by our Creator, the Lord Jesus Christ.

     

    Since the murderous cult of Islam has throughout its history and
    does today explicitly hold to doctrines of world domination and the dhimmitudinization of
    non-Muslims, ‘We the People’ must recognize that those values
    espoused in the teachings of Islam are incompatible with a free society and
    that the murderous cult of Islam cannot – must not – be tolerated in the United
    States of America or any of her territories.

     

    It was the contention of the signers of The Declaration of
    Independence in recognizing the entitlement of separate and equal
    station availed by the laws of Nature and Nature’s God, the Lord Jesus Christ,
    unto a free nation that any such nation’s citizens should rightly exercise the
    action of decently respecting the opinions of mankind in the Course of human
    events by declaring the causes which impelled them towards separation from – In
    the trial of their time -Great Britain.

     

    Americans today should as well decently respect the opinions of
    mankind in the Course of human events and declare as we face the trial of our
    time—the world-wide expansion of the murderous cult of Islam, an enemy as
    insurmountable in its dimensions as Great Britain seemed unto our Founding
    Fathers—the causes which impel us now unto the separation from and the
    rejection and exclusion of the murderous cult of Islam.

     

    America must determine to defeat Islam. Nothing short of unconditional
    surrender will suffice for to permit Islam participation within a
    society is an invitation for the viral spread of the murderous cult which holds
    fundamentally to aspirations of world domination under a one-world Islamic
    Caliphate.

     

    Holding the truths which are self-evident as did our founding
    fathers denies the toleration of any encroachment upon those same truths by
    erroneous ideologies which deny the Creator, the Lord Jesus Christ, from Whom
    we are endowed with ‘certain unalienable Rights.’ The truth
    that ‘…all men are Created equal, that they are endowed by their
    Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and
    the pursuit of Happiness’ rings familiar and true in the hearts of
    all those who would call themselves Americans. Those words are the very
    tintinnabulation resounding for generations within ‘We the People’ of
    the United States of America of the Spirit of ’76’, the American Spirit of
    Liberty, revered and saluted symbolically in America’s Liberty Bell which,
    though cracked and silent, still loudly rings in the hearts of all those who
    assent to the truth that all men are, in fact, endowed by their Creator with
    certain unalienable rights.

     

    The Declaration of Independence continues, “That
    to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their
    just powers from CONSENT OF THE GOVERNED, –that whenever any Form of
    Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to
    alter or abolish it, and to institute new Government, laying its foundation on
    such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem
    most likely to effect their Safety and Happiness. Prudence, indeed, will
    dictate that Governments long established should not be changed for light or
    transient causes; and accordingly all experience hath shewn, that mankind are
    more disposed to suffer, while evils are sufferable, than to right themselves
    by abolishing the forms to which they are accustomed. BUT WHEN A LONG TRAIN OF
    ABUSES AND USURPATIONS, PURSUING INVARIABLY THE SAME OBJECT EVINCES A DESIGN TO
    REDUCE THEM UNDER ABSOLUTE DESPOTISM, IT IS THEIR RIGHT, IT IS THEIR DUTY, TO
    THROW OFF SUCH GOVERNMENT AND TO PROVIDE NEW GUARDS FOR THEIR FUTURE
    SECURITY.”

     

    The freedom of religion determined by and for ‘We the
    People’ in the First Amendment to the Constitution needs
    not be extended unto adherents to the murderous cult of Islam for the
    words ‘When a long train of abuses and usurpations, pursuing
    invariably the same object…’ are a working definition for
    Islam’s doctrinal strategy – that is to say, ‘design’ – of DHIMMITUDE.

     

    Islam advances an invariable pursuit of an object: namely, a
    one-world Islamic Caliphate, and evinces a design to reduce America under the
    absolute despotism of Sharia. It is our right and our duty to throw
    off and throw out such a murderous cult as Islam as sure as it would be to
    throw off any government that would arise which so clearly met the description
    of that government our Founding Fathers chose to give us warning.

     

    It is our duty to provide a ‘New Guards’ for
    our future security: a new, legal, legitimate president who will lead us in the
    war in which we are engaged with the murderous cult of Islam.

     

    Our enemy, Islam, reduces all non-Muslims unto the status of dhimmi;
    a status with no rights under the absolute despotism of Sharia law.

     

     

    The words written to protect America from abuses and usurpations
    by an hypothetical derelict American government apply equally, indeed
    more so, as instruction as how to proceed against any foreign enemy which
    meets the description in the warning from our Founding Fathers so precisely as
    does the murderous cult of Islam.

     

    Islam is not just a religion. It is a cultural
    mandate unto every dimension of a society antithetical to the American
    experiment in ‘government of the People, by the People and for the
    People.’ It is the right and the duty of those who would defend the
    Constitution and American Liberty to exclude the murderous cult of Islam from
    the religious freedoms bought with the blood and toil of Americans and throw
    out of our country adherents to such a murderous cult which espouses an agenda
    of world domination through terror.

     

    America must expel all Muslims who advance any dimension of
    cultural jihad in order to guard her future security
    and she needs now to terminate any further immigration of adherents to Islam.

     

    If we do not take this drastic step now future generations of
    Americans shall suffer the same fate as the citizens of all non-Muslim
    countries where Islam has conquered in its recorded history. Future generations
    of Americans shall have to take up the fight under far worse conditions wherein
    the murderous cult shall have entrenched itself more deeply within our borders.

     

     

     

    THE PRESENCE OF ISLAM IS AN INVITATION TO JIHAD.

     

    No free society should tolerate Islam.

     

    America must determine to defeat her enemy and demand nothing less
    than unconditional surrender.

     

    History clearly illustrates that compromise with the murderous
    cult of Islam inevitably leads to subjugation.

     

    Please watch the 9 minute
    and 26 second YouTube video ‘Four Stages of Islamic Conquest’
    published on July 20, 2012 by libertyLSA.

  • EllieMurasaki

    So you wanna explain how you know that the author of the Declaration–the same guy who cut all the supernatural bits out of the Book of Matthew–meant ‘the Lord Jesus Christ’ when he said ‘Nature’s God’?

    And take the anti-Islam bullshit elsewhere. We are not having any.

  • http://dpolicar.livejournal.com/ Dave

     Shame on you.

  • fraser

     Well we’ve had far more acts of terrorism committed by right-to-life Christians than we have by Muslims. So presumably we should kick Christianity out too.

  • EllieMurasaki

    That’s not terrorism. You know it can’t be terrorism because it was conservative white folks done it.

  • Victor

    Expand

    (((That’s not terrorism. You know it can’t be terrorism because it was conservative white folks done it.)))Sarcasm! Right EllieMurasaki?Hey Folks! Victor figured that out for himself cause we 92% gods didn’t say a word!Does that mean that there might be some hope for (U>S) sinner vic? :)Peace


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