Several recent posts at Vox Nova have turned their critical attention to individuals who have shown up at President Obama’s appearances with guns. Countless comments have defended these people as being law abiding citizens, and that only a few of these individuals seem to be motivated by hatred or racism. While I would not want to paint every one of these people with the same brush, it seems really clear to me that this is not simply a matter of a few “nutcases” acting as individuals. This is clearly an organized movement.
A recent news item shows, too, that not only are hatred and racism involved, religiously motivated and justified hatred is involved. It seems that Chris Broughton, who was made famous for bringing an assault rifle to an Obama event in Arizona, attended a service at Faithful Word Baptist Church in Tempe the day before the event during which Pastor Steven Anderson preached a sermon entitled “Why I Hate Barack Obama.” A few passages from that sermon:
I don’t obey Barack Obama. And I’d like Barack Obama to melt like a snail tonight…Nope. I’m not gonna pray for his good. I’m going to pray that he dies and goes to hell.
… you’re going to tell me that I’m supposed to pray for the socialist devil, murderer, infanticide, who wants to see young children and he wants to see babies killed through abortion and partial-birth abortion and all these different things — you’re gonna tell me I’m supposed to pray for God to give him a good lunch tomorrow while he’s in Phoenix, Arizona?
After the events at the Obama event, Anderson said in an interview, “No where in the sermon did I advocate vigilantism. It’s a spiritual battle…. I’d rather have him die of natural causes anyway, that way he’s not some martyr. I’m praying for him to die just so he gets what he deserves.”
It will be interesting to watch the continued debates around this well-organized and potentially violent hate movement, as well as the ways in which Catholics on the right decide whether or not to distance themselves from it or, in its vigilant defense, continue to make excuses for it.