8 February 2008

Neoconservative Christians

Amidst what seems an endless stream of equivocations and rationalizations proffered by Bush apologists and Republican party loyalists, here is a remonstration on neoconservative Christians assent to a litany of egregious stances that are completely unchristian:

  • Silence on torture. Yes, some in the church have publicly spoken out against the heinous practice of torture by the government, but most, at least those that own radio stations, news publishing companies, and television networks continue to back 2008 Republican presidential candidates that all believe in torture (Ron Paul is the only exception). Worse, many cheer on the candidates pledge to support every method “torturers could think of”, including suffocation and electrocution. Barbarians deviating from everything fair and just about America.

  • Support for injustice. And Constitution eroding legislation. So myopically centered on the single issue of abortion, gleeful over the potential for more SCOTUS justices in the mold of Anton Scalia and Clarence Thomas. “Strict constructionists” who will rollback Row v. Wade and take back America for God. No consideration is given to the anti-Constitutional nature these justices have actually displayed.

    • Support for unitary executive doctrine. The justices Neoconservative Christians treasure have favored this notion, that whatever the president deems is legal, regardless of law. Perhaps when a different party member occupies the executive office, this behavior will be altered. But, even so, it’s not a sign of upholding the Constitution. A belief in unlimited executive power is an anathema to a “we the people” democratic republic. Instead, a rabid religious right leader ring have cast themselves “kingmakers”, desirous of imposing American theocracy.

    • Grant corporate entities more rights than human beings. The current justice composition has shown clearly they stand on the side of the invisible corporate entity “citizen”, over the interest of human citizens. This truth is even more evident at the appellate level where worker citizens are ground up by corporate interests.

    • Embrace assault on Bill of Rights . Granted, a true Christian subverts his desires to the will of Christ, but the rule of law should be adhered to, and if the nation’s legal foundation should be altered, then conduct a process to correct it instead of cheering the blatant usurping of it. Near none of their ranks speak out against the Constitution smattering Patriot Act, especially those who sit behind a microphone or pen articles for national press outlets.

    • Support of economic policy unfavorable to working Americans. Opposing minimum wage, universal health care, labor unions, equal justice, etc.… They claim to be champions of the family, but can’t see that those doing honest work should not be one paycheck away from homelessness, or have to work too many hours and unable to be available for their children. Worse, while celebrating Martin Luther King and other champions of social justice, they actually endorse the oppressors good Christians campaigned against in previous times.

  • Christians for Caesar. So willing to serve the interests of empire, not the will of Christ. Full bore uncritical support of elective invasions and war. Wrapping God and state together, in an idolatrous celebration of empire. They clamor for war and remain ignorant of global history. They easily succumb to state issued propaganda, even clinging to it even though recent history reveals the implicit and explicit deceptions. They obediently dance to the notes handed down to them from party boss media message makers.

  • Advocates of the elective, illegal and immoral Iraq invasion and occupation. Even after the abundance of evidence casting proof on the fraudulent deception and catastrophic post-invasion acts.

  • Support for wars they themselves are not willing to fight. Many openly admit that they’re content with wholehearted favor for warfare but not for them or their offspring. Instead, that’s a duty for lower class denizens, or to be staffed by mercenary forces. What a far cry from the heroic manner which WWII was waged by the country as a whole. Today’s neoconservative Christian doesn’t object the U.S. intervening and meddling into the affairs of foreign nations, even if it means propping up vile, oppressive dictators and monarchs like Saddam Hussien.

  • No acknowledgement of the deep rooted corruption in Republican political leadership. Nothing registers. Not the scandals of tainted meat or tainted toys, where appointed officials appear to pride themselves for not carrying out their responsibilities. Neither does the partisan reeking justice department massacre that was carried out. And the fact that many found Rudy Giuliani agreeable, a man dripping with the taint of corruption. A noun, a verb and 9/11 is what a Democratic opponent labeled his campaign, but even the NYC firefighters spoke out against Giuliani.

Worse, this fusion of corporate chiefs, heads of state, and a coalition of self anointed kingmakers are tainting religion.

On a recent radio talk show, the host and callers mocked candidate Ron Paul for his unwillingness to ratchet up the scare level on Iran. Never mind that Iran has never attacked any of its neighbors and was itself the victim of a U.S. orchestrated coup that overthrew a democratically elected government and installed the Shah and his brutal regime. Or that these self proclaimed Christians uncritically buy into the same war mongering propaganda that led to the illegal and immoral invasion of Iraq.

Let’s consider the abortion issue for a moment. I share the sentiment of pro-lifers for sanctity of life. But a heartdeep embrace of a culture of life is about so much more than Row v. Wade. Even the narrow concentration on legality of the medical procedure completely misses the bigger picture — that is, if the goal is eliminating or drastically reducing the incidence of abortion. The same neoconservative Christians who make banning abortion their litmus test for a election candidate are opposed to measures that would make abortion a less likely option — more care for single mothers, better pay for the least of us economically, availability of public commons resources, etc.…. Instead, they completely buy into the edicts their corporate masters put before them. Blame the victim, they must be deficient in character if they can’t make it.

No doubt I am lassoing a far too encompassing net that includes some reasonable folks, possessing a conservative bent, who do not totally subscribe to all the points put forth here. Or, in their partisan Republican allegiance, they believe the other Democratic alternatives are far worse for the country.

Acclaimed author David Brin has penned an excellent essay on the matter, titled The Ostrich Papers:

Some excerpts:

WHICH PRESIDENT WOULD YOU CALL “TOUGH ON CRIME”? One who put 100,000 extra police officers directly onto America’s streets while setting in place procedures to ensure their professionalism? Then oversaw the steepest drop in crime in American history? Or one who presided over the biggest increase in homicides and other violent crime in decades?

WOULD YOU HAVE LAUGHED ALOUD — OR CRIED — IF BILL CLINTON… declared repeatedly that a president can refuse to answer to any kind of accountability or oversight by our elected Congress?

WHAT IF BILL CLINTON…mocked and sneered at a condemned woman’s plea for clemency, on national television?

WOULD YOUR HACKLES RAISE IF IT WERE DEMOCRATS WHO… …kept buying up newspapers, radio stations and television outlets, aided by rule changes that allow just a few men to control most of the news Americans get to hear? Fabulously rich men who are actively and relentlessly partisan?

DO YOU FIGURE YOU’D HAVE NOTICED IF BILL CLINTON… …allowed a great American city to be destroyed through staggering bureaucratic negligence, despite plenty of warnings about hurricane danger? Then allowed graft and corruption to siphon off billions, in the aftermath?

Don’t you think you would have called it politically “significant” if Democrats were involved in nine out of ten of the lawmaker sex/perversion/corruption scandals, in the last decade? Of course you would!

It is so sad that Christians have twisted the message of Jesus into a jingoistic, nationalistic fervor for the advancement of empire. They cherry pick the portions of the Bible that support their materialistic interests. Ignored are the passages on justice, and caring for the “least of these”. And they are in outright defiance of those parts that in a revolutionary manner, go completely against any notion of human common sense — loving your enemies and blessing those who curse you.