Barton on Hate and Toleration

David Barton again:

“Healthy Parents have Healthy Children.”

When tolerance is a sin and hate is a virtue.

I throw that out because we’re getting to the point where tolerance is a bad thing and hate is a good thing. And let me define that: we’re told in, I believe it’s Proverbs 4:13, it says “the fear of the Lord is to hate evil.” Which means that if I’m going to stand for what God stands for, there’s some certain things I have to hate: I have to hate evil, I have to hate murder – well no, you can’t hate, that’s a bad thing … no, hate is a good thing!

I mean hating Nazis, that’s a good thing. And people say “well, you hate their philosophy, you don’t hate the people.” No, I hate people who want to kill other people and I’m sorry that they’re killing others but the guys who were on the Nazi trials at the end, I’m sorry, I just hate what they did. Alright, I love them as a person, yes Jesus died for them, I understand, but I hate certain things.

So we’ve got to get to the point where tolerance is seen as a sin because we’re tolerating a lot stuff that destroys our families, that destroys our own character and we can’t tolerate that stuff. We have to get back to the point where hate is a virtue, at least certain kinds of hate. The fear of the Lord is to hate evil and we need to have a hatred of things and get off this fence of having no passion about anything.

First, this begs for the H.L. Mencken quote on Bryan, “Evangelical Christianity, as everyone knows, is founded upon hate, as the Christianity of Christ was founded upon love. But even evangelical Christians occasionally loose their belts and belch amicably; I have known some who, off duty, were very benignant. …”

Barton is clearly still on duty.

Ed Brayton suggests that Barton simply hates the wrong people. But what strikes me is Barton’s usual lack of self awareness.

The Nazis were very pro-family, at least in their rhetoric. They had to be; Germany’s population growth was stagnant after WWI and the turbulent years following. Like Barton blaming liberals, German conservatives were quick to blame the permissive atmosphere of the Weimar Republic which supposedly encouraged self-centeredness and discouraged the types of sacrifices involved in having large families. Part of their horrid “racial hygiene” policies stemmed from their desire to encourage large, healthy German families.

I’m not intending to Godwin the conversation, nor am I attempting to cast Barton as a proto-Nazi. It’s just that the problem with declaring that it’s alright for the good people to hate the bad people is that everybody – including the Nazis – believes they’re the good people and that the other folks are the bad people.

  • Andrew Hall

    Every villain is hero in their own story.

  • Kevin S.

    I love how in the third quoted paragraph, Barton goes from hating the Nazis as people to loving them as people but hating their behavior. It’s almost like he remembered the Biblical injunction to love the sinner and hate the sin mid-speech.

  • Troutbane

    This is the part that I can never seem to get across the anti-Muslim evangelicals in this country:
    9/11 was caused by people who thought they were doing good.

    If that’s not the absolute best reason for being anti-religious, I don’t know what is.

  • JohnMWhite

    If Barton hates people who want to kill other people, he’s going to have to hate his god, who killed his own son.

  • Stacey C.

    This reminds me of a classic Mitchell & Webb sketch: Are we the Baddies?

  • smrnda

    If you are going to hate a group of people or their ideas, you had better have some real evidence that they are bad, other than the circular ‘they are bad because the Bible says so.’

    You get this all the time from anti-GLBT types who argue that it’s the pro-GLBT faction that’s intolerant; apparently, sitting down and taking it from a larger, more powerful group who wants to relegate you to second class citizen status is ‘tolerance’ but standing up for yourself is ‘intolerance.’ Sorry, the religious anti-GLBT lobby was intolerant first.

  • Jim Hudlow

    @John W. According to Drunk with Blood by Steve Wells the xtian god ordered or committed 2,476,636 murders as chronicled (not including any estimates…just stated numbers) in the bible. His son was just one of them and he was only dead for a weekend. If this is not evidence of the immorality of the xtian god then I’ll eat my wafer~~

  • kessy_athena

    I got Poe’ed with this one. Until I got to the last paragraph of the quote, I thought it was setting up an argument for why the evangelical community has obviously gone way too far. I’m not sure if people coming out and saying this stuff is a good thing or a bad thing.

    For many years in the US, it’s been pretty normal to see people in the public square who obviously believed this sort of thing but felt obliged to cloak their opinions in code words and euphemisms and so forth. Obviously the best thing would be to get rid of this sort of attitude completely, but I don’t think that’s actually going to happen for a long time yet. So, given that we have people in this society who are hateful against all sorts of people and thoroughly embrace bigotry, is it better if they’re forced to hide in the shadows and hide what they really think under a socially acceptable veneer, or is it better if this sort of thing is brought out in the open where everyone can see it for what it really is? Does forcing hate into hiding lead to it festering and metastasizing under the surface? Does having it out in the open make it more socially acceptable? I’m really not sure what I think on this one.

    Well, at least this time we’re all working from the same set of facts. It’s a sad state of affairs, but it’s actually an improvement that we’re not talking about people who insist that up is down.

  • vasaroti

    The kids in that illustration look evil, and they don’t have much space between their teeth and the base of the nose. Something is very wrong.

  • Michael

    No, I hate people who want to kill other people and I’m sorry that they’re killing others but the guys who were on the Nazi trials at the end, I’m sorry, I just hate what they did.

    Can somebody please translate this into English?

    • kessy_athena

      “No, I don’t just hate Nazi philosophy, I hate the Nazis themselves because they were a bunch of mass murders and I hate what they did.”

      Incidentally, Nazi philosophy? Adolf Hitler was a lot of things, but a deep philosophical thinker wasn’t one of them.

  • Brian K

    I think you are being too kind here. Given that Barton exhibits authoritarian personality traits and philosophical beliefs in the service of not one but TWO fundamentalisms (religion and nationalism), then it is perfectly logical and proper to classify him and hilk as “proto-fascist”.

    • kessy_athena

      I’ve found that using loaded terms like fascist and nazi is about the best way to stop any sort of discussion and turn it into a bunch of angry people screaming incoherently at each other. Using flame thrower language pretty much guarantees that you’re communicating nothing to anyone. Anyone who already agrees with you already agrees, and you’re just giving them a chance to nod their heads in agreement. Anyone who disagrees with you is just going to get angry and stop listening to what you have to say. And anyone who’s undecided will get turned off by the name calling and just tune out. So even when the comparison is valid, I try to avoid starting a flame war.

      And while I know nothing about this guy other then what was in this post, I do know that a lot of evangelicals really aren’t fascists in the literal sense, even if they act like they are in the figurative sense. there are a couple of important elements of fascism that are not really very widespread. At least as far as I know. For one thing, fascism held that war was a good thing, because conflict is supposed to bring out the best and noblest qualities in humans. There’s also the nazi concept of volk – although it literally simply means “people,” Hitler gave it nationalist and racist overtones. The Nazis believed that the volk was the primary entity whose good supersedes the good of all others – the individual, the nation, humanity as a whole. And finally there’s eugenics – the idea that some people are inherently superior and others inferior, and for the good of everyone the superior should be elevated in society and the inferior marginalized and eventually eliminated.

      I’m sure there are some people on the far right who subscribe to these views, even if they’re rationalized or not stated explicitly. But I don’t think it’s fair to brand people as fascists simply because they’re crazy christians and say incredibly stupid and offensive things.

      • Brian K

        I don’t disagree, kessy…in general.

        Fascism does have other aspects than the German variant (I like the Umberto Eco defintion)

        Definitely read this…I think it can be seen as applying to the Dominionist and Authoritarian right.

        My quick and dirty paraphrase of some of his key definitional points:



        cult of action-probably.

        disagreement is treason….yes. Beyond treason…treason against GOD!

        social frustration…most certainly yes yes yes.

        heroism…Christians are warriors in the battle against an implacable enemy…or their own sinful urges. Yes!

        nationalism as the be-all of status. Yes…because Barton believes in the conflation of church and state. CHURCH is the most important part of the equation, of course.

        Humiliation by the power of enemies. War on Christmas? Oppressed Christians.

        Life is lived for struggle. Most definitely so! This is a major theme of the far christian right.

        Elitism-the Saved, the elect. Nonbelievers are not worthy. Yep

        Machismo…Oh most certainly. Quiverful. Submissive wives.

  • Brian K

    “his ilk”. Eek. LOL :)

    But…”fascism” is just a term, so probably not important.

  • Brian M

    One more interesting and semi-related comment:


    There is no Republican Party,” Savage told fellow talk show host Aaron Klein. “It’s an appendage of the Democrat machine, as we’ve all just seen. It’s two-card Monte, as we well know. It’s a game being played against the American people. You’ve got the drunk Boehner on the one side, and the quasi-pseudo-crypto Marxist on the other, who is really just enjoying the ride in Hawaii right now, representing his factions.”

    Instead, “We need a nationalist party in the United States of America,” said Savage on WABC’s “Aaron Klein Investigative Radio,” suggesting a party focused on “borders, language and culture.”

    He continued: “You have the rudiments of a new party in this country called a tea party. They need to restructure their party. They need a charismatic leader, which they don’t have. When you say, ‘Tea party,’ no one knows who the leader is, because there is no leader. No man has stepped forward who can lead that party – no one who is an articulate speaker, a charismatic mover of people.