Wednesday, November 4, 2009

I pledge allegiance to the United States of Sodom

My friend Waldo first introduced me to the term Christianist, and--for a brief time--I thought it was a derogatory term for Christian. Then I realized that the definition was something more like this:

one who advocates the reordering of society and government in accordance with fundamentalist Christian interpretations of the Bible.

Which explains the following local reaction to the defeat of same-sex marriage in Maine yesterday:

Now let’s get back to marriage. Praise GOD! We are still the USA and not the United States of Sodom. We understand that marriage is between a man and woman not some pc fiction.

USA equals fundamentalist Biblical principles of the type espoused by evangelists like the late Carl McIntyre [hero to the same commenter above], described by First Things' TImothy George as having "a knack for gutter politics," and who was notable for such mainstream ideas as total abstinence from alcohol, a radical apocalyptic eschatology ("he had once spoken of the “Roman terror” as a worse threat to American freedom than communism"), making almost no "distinction between true Christianity and superpatriotic Americanism," and repudiating the Reverend Billy Graham thus:

WHY does Dr. Graham always advise converts to “go to the church of your own choice,” instead of directing them to fundamental assemblies?

WHY is he allowing himself to be drawn into the modernistic ecumenical movement that is gaining such momentum each passing year?

WHY did he allow smoking at the banquet in New York City on September 17, 1956, with prayers being offered by modernists?

WHY did he (as did Cardinal Spellman) recommend a moving picture, “The Ten Commandments”? Does he endorse the theater for believers?

WHY doesn't he wake up to the fact that fundamentalism can't “play ball” with modernism anymore than the USA can with Communism?

WHY this statement, Dr. Graham: “The Catholic Church has been very friendly to me anywhere I have gone”? Tsk! Billy!

Leonard Sweet quite accurately described McIntyre as “a mental and spiritual oaf who presented himself as an absolute rectum of rectitude," one of whose favorite sports was castigating anyone and everyone who disagreed with his theology as a commie or a modernist.

It was McIntyre among others who so reviled the 1952 Revised Standard Version of the Bible that they inspired book-burnings--or should I say "Bible burnings"?--because the RSV editors had the temerity to translate correctly the verses in the origional Hebrew Isaiah 7:14 as "Behold, a young woman shall conceive and bear a son, and shall call his name Immanuel." This corrected the mistranslation of the Septaguint [LXX] Greek translation that was in use by the Jewish community during the 1st Century AD; but McIntyre and his ilk considered only the King James Version of the Bible to be infallible Holy Writ, challenging both the Christianity and patriotism of anybody who disageed.

In fact, being anti-Catholic was so tied up with being a fundamentalist that in 1945 McIntyre wrote: "As we enter the post-war world, without any doubt the greatest enemy of freedom and liberty that the world has to face today is the Roman Catholic system."

This is the hero of the local blogger who has no difficulty with red-baiting, and who accuses anybody who disagrees with him of attempting to inaugurate the United States of Sodom.

Sodom is an interesting reference for a Christianist to use, given the literal meaning of Genesis 19:7-8, when Lot is attempting to save the two guests in his house by offering to let strangers rape his daughters:

... 7and said, "I beg you, my brothers, do not act so wickedly. 8 Behold, I have two daughters who have not known man; let me bring them out to you, and do to them as you please; only do nothing to these men, for they have come under the shelter of my roof."

So by suggesting that same-sex marriage advocates are trying to initiate a United States of Sodom, our local blogger is not just making a political statement, he is arguing by analogy that allowing gay people to marry is the equivalent of child rape.

In what context is Carl McIntyre cited by our local blogger as a hero?

Since I have been recently accused of taking him out of context, let's try the whole comment:

Personally, I have always been a fan of Carl Mcintire and Col. Domer so red baiting wouldn’t bother me anyway. It’s the reds that bother me. She is no more a Republican than the next commie lib and I would appreciate it if she made it official like she is hinting. The party is stronger without a 5th column. That is all I am saying.

OK, we've done with Carl McIntyre, so let's handle red-baiting, beginning with its implications for educators:

During the 1930s financial pressures and political factionalism combined to imperil the principle of academic freedom, by which teachers are free to instruct without the imposition of political or ideological agendas. Conservatives in groups such as the American Legion and the Daughters of the American Revolution (DAR) repeatedly attacked the schools as bastions of communist propaganda and sought to have school boards restrict the curricula of public schools and require teachers to sign loyalty oaths. After the Democratic landslide in the elections of 1936, conservatives, smarting from wholesale repudiation at the polls, turned their attention to the schools, attempting to turn them into bastions of conservative philosophy. Although historians normally date the onset of "red-baiting," or "witch-hunting" for communists, after World War II, for teachers red-baiting began in the 1930s.

Red-baiting led to loyalty oaths, and inevitably to McCarthyism, which is enjoying a strange resurgence today [and was, truth be told, enjoying that resurgence in terms of the rehabilitation of Joe McCarthy's reputation, long before Barack Obama], which led to massive abuses of personal and civil liberties on par with the worst Patriot Act abuses.

Thanks to the First Amendment [of which Carl McIntyre did not approve]:

You have the absolute right to venerate someone like Carl McIntyre with his robust anti-Catholic prejudices.

You have the absolute right to stand up and say red baiting wouldn’t bother me anyway.

No matter how stupid such positions make you look.

I also have the right to refuse to allow your Christianist [as distinguished from Christian--which to me would include Catholics and others who do not share your insistence that only fundamentalist evangelicals can determine what the faith means] attempts to mischaracterize Americans with different sexualities or different political opinions to stand.

Shorter version: don't expect me not to call you out for acting like a bigoted buffoon.

PS--to donviti: I guess you win. Sorry.


Chris Slavens said...

Gay marriage should be decided by the states, anyway, if it's to be a government issue. I don't think it's so much an issue of legislative morality on the part of conservatives, as it is states' rights under the Constitution.

pandora said...

I am sick and tired of David's word vomit, and it seems most of the Delaware blogosphere is in agreement.

He's beyond insulting. He's also not terribly bright - certainly not a history professor! ;-)

Oh, and facts mean nothing to him.

Can you tell I'm so over his crap? I'm tired of him questioning my morality, and pretty much damning my soul. I'm tired of him implying that anyone who doesn't agree with him is a bad parent, spouse, son, daughter, American... a commie lib. Does he even realize how obnoxious he is?

I'm pretty much done with DP, as well.

/end of rant

pandora said...

Sorry, I was a little harsh. It's just infuriating.

Foxwood said...

How is it our country has been the greatest country in the world for over 200 years and now Obutthole want's to change it?

Delaware Watch said...

"Gay marriage should be decided by the states, anyway, if it's to be a government issue."

Bull. If the government has any business recognizing marriages of any kind, it should be an equal right enjoyed by all citizens. Neither the federal nor a state government should grant such rights. It should recognize those rights.

"I don't think it's so much an issue of legislative morality on the part of conservatives, as it is states' rights under the Constitution."

Bull. It's all about foisting religious squeamishness and malice on the populace.

Steven H. Newton said...


It is appropriate that you sub-title your blog "rewriting American history."

For your impoverished information, the idea of the Constitution as a living document was supported as early as the late 1790s by such arch-Marxists as James Madison and Thomas Jefferson. Try reading Jefferson's "The Earth belongs to the living" letter.

He made the f**king Louisiana Purchase by re-interpreting the "necessary and proper" clause.

John Marshall simply MADE UP the Supreme Court's power of judicial review, and we actually run the Federal judiciary system off of the Judiciary Act of 1789 because the members of the First Congress (most of whom had attended the Constitutional Convention) recognized that they wrote Article III so poorly that it could not be executed.

You want to run your little mantra that anybody who has a different viewpoint on the meaning and interpretation of the Constitution is a Commie? Fine. Go do it somewhere else until you get your A-game and come with some, I don't know, actual scholarship about what the hell it all means.

Because you really don't have a clue.

David said...

For once, I thought that you actually got the quotes right, but then you went off the deep end.

Where you get child rape from Gen. 19 is unknown. Lot's daughters were adults, and the men of Sodom had no interest in marrying them. Lot's offer of them was sort of warped, but giving daughters for marriage was part of the local culture.

It was the men that they were interested in having and raping.

Sodom refers to a state of morality in allusion that embraces Sodomy. We do not embrace that system of public values. We are a Judeo Christian society and will remain so as long as I live.

Steven H. Newton said...

We are a Judeo Christian society and will remain so as long as I live.

An as the ultimate in egotistical existentialism: America will remain Judeo-Christian as long as David Anderson is alive.

Please. Keep making my points for me. The more you write the less coherent you look.

G Rex said...

Hold on now, I'm not a terribly religious person (Christmas and Easter plus five or six) but I believe that marriage is a religious rite, not a legally binding contract between individuals. Why else would you have to apply to the state for a marriage license on top of your church's sanction of holy matrimony? Requiring the church to acknowledge the "marriage" of any two people, gay or straight, who were united by a justice of the peace is therefore an imposition of the state's authority over the church. You might as well grant baptism to judges! If you want equal rights of inheritance, hospital visitation, medical insurance, etc. for gays, fix civil unions. Leave marriage alone.

Tyler Nixon said...

I can't say it enough times :

Get marriage out of government, and get government out of marriage.

For people who claim such suspicion of "big government", I can't imagine how it can get any "bigger" or more pervasive, than to be the arbiter of (what the theocons would call) holy unions, the most personal and intimate of human bonds.

That David et al want government controlling marriage says much about their rank hypocrisy as it concerns the scope of Leviathan government.

I.E. "Big" government for thee, but not for me.

'Cause for me, government can't get much bigger than when it can invade your bedroom and dictate what ties will bind (or not bind) families.

Socialists, every one of them...

Steven H. Newton said...

I would argue strongly that the proper term for traditional marriage zealots is statist not socialist.

Tyler Nixon said...

I hear you, Steve. Obviously socialism is a particularized expression of statism.

I am using the "S" word loosely here, rather than in a strict academic definition sense...

Mainly, it is terminology David et al should well understand when applied to their statist bent to defend government socialization of private relationships, particularly marital.

pandora said...

Now that I've calmed down, allow me to agree with Tyler when it comes to marriage.

I'm not sure why the government is involved, other than signing a paper. I might point out that gov. isn't involved in divorce - other than accepting paperwork that nullifies their initial (marriage license) paperwork. I'm just saying you don't have to apply for a divorce license.

And David and Co. have always been for their version of big government.

Thomas L. Knapp said...

"Gay marriage should be decided by the states, anyway, if it's to be a government issue."

Yeah ... except for that pesky Full Faith and Credit clause and that problematic 14th Amendment equal protection clause.

States don't have rights. People do.

Chris Slavens said...

States retain each and every right that is not specifically granted to the federal government in the Constitution, without exception.

Allow me to clarify my position. I don't support government involvement in marriage at all, gay or straight. The government should not have established straight marriage as a legal status--and therefore it will be equally incorrect to establish gay marriage. I'd prefer to see a movement to remove government from all marriage in general, than to add to the problem by bringing gay marriage into the mess. Restore marriage to its proper position--a religious union entirely separate from the state--and there will be no problem on either side of the debate.