"Onward, Christian Soldiers". Not just a hymn anymore.
The separation of Church and State now means leaving the State out of it.
Last week, Trump’s former National Security advisor, Michael Flynn, (that same Michael Flynn currently fighting a subpoena issued by the House January 6 committee, btw) told a group of rightist ‘Christians’ there could be only one religion in this country.
He spoke the words they’d been wanting to hear out loud, and they rejoiced!
The rest of us took to thinking—again— that maybe it’s time we saddled up.
If we are going to have one nation under God, which we must, we have to have one religion," he said. "One nation under God and one religion under God, right? All of us, working together."
How long have we been fighting this Christian ‘takeover’ now? So long I can’t remember a time we weren’t. I’ve written against it so many times I’ve lost count, but I pulled this one out of the archives today.
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I guess you've heard that the Rightward so-called Christians have a flag, yes, a flag, and some of them think it would be cool to fly it above the American flag on the same pole, even though flag etiquette has said forever that no flag should fly above Old Glory. Their reasoning? Something about God coming first, which they assume any good American should obviously recognize.
As a citizen of these United States of America, were you as floored as I was by this? Oddly, or maybe strangely, I didn't even know Christians had a flag. (Apparently, it's been around since 1897. I must have missed that part. I know for a fact, though, that it has never before been used as a protest flag to be flown, Heaven forfend, above the American flag.)
Something is happening. These people who claim to be operating as Christians are scaring the hell out of me. Somehow our inexorable move into the 21st Century changed everything, and the Christian Right is not satisfied with being nice and kind and following the Ten Commandments or the Golden Rule or following the words of their Lord Jesus Christ, who said, and I quote (Matthew 6:6, English Standard Version):
But when you pray, go into your room and shut the door and pray to your Father who is in secret. And your Father who sees in secret will reward you.
Or, as the Jesus of the King James version sayeth in the fullest (Matthew 6:3-6:8):
3But when thou doest alms, let not thy left hand know what thy right hand doeth: 4That thine alms may be in secret: and thy Father which seeth in secret himself shall reward thee openly. 5And when thou prayest, thou shalt not be as the hypocrites are: for they love to pray standing in the synagogues and in the corners of the streets, that they may be seen of men. Verily I say unto you, They have their reward. 6But thou, when thou prayest, enter into thy closet, and when thou hast shut thy door, pray to thy Father which is in secret; and thy Father which seeth in secret shall reward thee openly. 7But when ye pray, use not vain repetitions, as the heathen do: for they think that they shall be heard for their much speaking. 8Be not ye therefore like unto them: for your Father knoweth what things ye have need of, before ye ask him.
No, these new "Christians" see the quest for their version of morality as the war to end all wars. My idea of morality may differ from theirs, but theirs is Right and mine is wrong. If it were only a difference of interpretation, that would be one thing, but because I don't go along with their version of Playing Well Together Or Else, I am now the enemy.
I confess I've never thought of myself as the enemy of a Christian. This is new for me. Some of my best friends are Christians and I love them madly. For that reason, I've underplayed my anger at those who operate as haters under the guise of Christian love.
No more. So here goes:
The people who proudly call themselves "the Christian Right" may say they're Christians, but I've known Christians and they're not them. They are the worst kind of hypocrites. The bible is a book of stories, some inspiring, some fascinating, some downright ugly. The Christian Right uses the ugly parts as proof that God wants them to discriminate. They argue that women have no rights, that minorities are inferior, that different kinds of love are sins worse than murder, and that liberal education is the work of the devil. They claim religious persecution while they themselves revel in their roles as righteous persecutors.
They've scared our political leaders into kowtowing to their sick and sorry excuses for societal morality to the point now that bills must pass the Christian test before they can move on. Their greatest triumph is that no matter what they offer up, if they offer it up as an edict from God, thy will be done.
Their proudest achievement is the almost total allegiance of the entire American political body to an idea that in order to govern one must be religious--preferably to the Right, but any claim to religion will do.
They will tell you with great confidence that atheists will never win a public office. They have finally eradicated secularism from government.
In their minds, it's a done deal.
So alrighty, then. Break time is over. Let’s talk about this. We all know something has to be done.
(I’ll remind you again that I wrote this in 2015. Before Trump. This is nothing new. But it’s getting really old.)