I know the way it sounds when people say things along the lines of “I can’t be racist! Some of my best friends are black!!” … so I’ll just say that I know – and appear to get along with – people of varying degrees of faith. (Granted, most of them are generally non-believers like myself, maybe further up or down The Spectrum a bit … but there are a few Christians in the mix) Because of this, I know that the majority of Christians – both those I know now and those with whom I grew up – are generally good people who take a live-and-let-live approach to their religion and other people as a whole. I may not agree with their worldview, but since they don’t have any intention to convert me, it doesn’t affect me one way or the other.
Then you have this asshole:
This is Dennis Terry, pastor of Greenwell Springs Baptist Church. He was asked to introduce Rick Santorum during a recent rally. If you don’t feel like watching any of it (I don’t blame you), here’s the transcript, courtesy of Siri from DailyKos. My … commentary … is interspersed throughout:
I don’t care what the liberals say, I don’t care what the naysayers say, this country was founded as a Christian nation. The god of Abraham, the god of Isaac and the god of Jacob. There’s only one god, there’s only one god and his name is Jesus. (wild audience applause)
You, my friend, are the reason why we have the separation of church and state implicit in the Constitution. This country was not founded as a Christian nation; it was founded by a bunch of Deists who used generic terms when referring to anything related to the divine in attempt to bridge as many religions as possible.
It’s this mentality that tells me that any current legislation connected to the phrase “religious freedom” is simply another way of saying “Christian privilege”. People like him don’t respect other religions or acknowledge their right to exist side by side with their own. Hell, even as a godless heathen, I couldn’t care what you believe as long as you keep it to yourself.
I’m tired of people telling me that I can’t say those words. I’m tired of people telling us as Christians that we can’t voice our beliefs or we can’t no longer pray in public. I’m, listen to me, if you don’t li..love America and you don’t like the way we do things, I’ve got one thing to say, GET OUT (wild audience applause).
This guy’s going to create a fire hazard with all of the strawmen he’s setting up. No one is saying Christians can’t voice their beliefs … unless what they’re voicing is a call to discriminate against people they find icky (… or oddly alluring even if they refuse to admit it to themselves). No one is demanding they stop praying in public either … unless it’s a public event, paid for by taxpayers, at which point you have to follow the rules of secular government. Render unto Caesar, bucko.
I live in America. I love this country, but I’m not happy with the way some things are going. Everyone has the right to voice their opinion, but they have to be careful not to incite hatred or violence against anyone else. To have some sanctimonious, bloviating goon tell everyone with a different worldview to “get out” is the very reason why the Constitution and Declaration of Independence are written the way they are. It’s also the reason why people dislike the brand of Christians who think they deserve to run the show because they’re right and they know it.
We don’t worship Buddha. I said we don’t worship Buddha. We don’t worship Mohammad. We don’t worship Allah. We worship god. We worship god’s son Jesus Christ.
Well, you might worship Jehovah. But, being a pluralistic society, you have Jews, Muslims, Buddhists, Hindus, Druids, Wiccans, and non-believers who will disagree with you on that little detail. And do Buddhists even “worship” Buddha? I thought they were generally atheists, and Buddhism was more of a philosophy than an actual religion. I might be thinking of the Zen variety, though …
I believe the church is to be the conscience of the nation. The church needs to be the conscience of our state and our local community. Listen closely. Now hold on for just a moment.
No, you hold on. The church – and the bible from which they teach – is not, nor should it ever be the basis of any set of moral standards. Otherwise we would still own slaves, beat our wives and children, punish rape victims for not screaming for help loudly enough, and stone adulterers and homosexuals.
And a lot of high-powered adulterers fill the coffers of godly men like yourselves, don’t they?
As long as they continue to kill little babies in our mother’s womb, somebody’s got to take a stand and say, it’s not right. God be merciful to us as a nation.
As long as women have the right to either complete or safely terminate their pregnancies – without being publicly shamed by their community or medically unnecessary invasive procedures mandated by a bunch of men – we will not stop complaining!!
As long as sexual perversion is becoming normalized, somebody needs to stand up and say, god forgive us, god have mercy upon us.
As long as we are asked by modern society to treat people who are biologically predisposed to be attracted to members of the same sex are treated with the same respect and dignity as everyone else – we will not stop complaining!!
And as long as they continue to tell our children they cannot pray in public schools or pray in open, public places today, somebody’s got to take a stand and say, god forgive us, god have mercy upon us.
As long as we can no longer legislate compulsory prayer in public schools, and then pretend that they’re not allowed to pray at all because it sounds more sinister than the reality of the situation – we will not stop complaining!!
As long as they continue to tear down traditional marriage. Listen. God intended for marriage to be between a man and a woman and as long as they continue to attack marriage, somebody needs to take a stand and say NO! NO! NO! NO! (crowd erupts in wild applause)
For as long as we choose to define “traditional” marriage in whatever terms that are consistent with our personal beliefs, conveniently ignore the fact that women were treated as property and men had multiple wives in biblical times, and we really don’t care that much about divorce and affairs anymore as long as you’re not gay – we will not stop complaining!!
I tell you my friend, I believe that Christians in America are the key to revival. I believe that Christians in America is the key to the economy turning around. I believe that Christians in America is the key to the jobless rate continuing to go down. I believe it’s a spiritual thing. If we’ll put god back in America, put god back in our pulpits, put god back in our homes and in our State House and then in Washington D.C., then we can have revival in America and the holy spirit will show up and great and mighty things will happen for this country.
And I tell you, my “friend”, that one pair of hands that is hard at work is more effective than ten thousand clasped together in prayer in deference to a deity you think is better than all of the others, and whose followers you despise for no justifiable reason. I believe it’s not a “spiritual thing” at all. It’s about control, power, influence, and demanding that the rest of the nation tell you that you’re right. It’s about establishing a fundamentalist theocracy by spreading Christianity throughout this country by way of governmental mandate and shredding the Constitution in the process.
But for as long as there are normal people who value secular moral philosophy – regardless of their beliefs – keeping you in check by laughing the lunatic of a candidate you endorse into obscurity, thus ensuring your pipe dream of a Christian America remains so for the foreseeable future – you will not stop complaining.