Wallbuilders

Boykin: FRC Didn't Kill the Shooter, So How Can it Be a Hate Group?

Today's episode of "WallBuilders Live" was dedicated entirely to attacking the Southern Poverty Law Center with David Barton repeatedly (and falsely) claiming that the SPLC had placed him on its "hate list" while guest Jerry Boykin reiterated his claims that the SPLC was “anti-American," "anti-Christian," and "anti-Semitic."

The most interesting revelation was when Boykin, along with Barton and co-host Rick Green, wondered how an organization like the Family Research Council could be classified as a hate group when, during last month's shooting at FRC headquarters, the building manager did not kill the shooter after he had disarmed him because God told him not to:

Boykin: Let me tell you a quick thing you may not even know; the day that the shooter came in here and shot our building manager who just happened to be sitting at the reception desk that day. The building manager, after being shot, wrestled him to the ground with one arm, took his pistol away from him, bleeding profusely and started to shoot him and he said to us "God told me not to kill that man."

Now I want you to think about that. We're the hate group but he said "God told me not to kill him." And he could have justifiably killed that guy right there that had just shot him.

...

Green: What a great response by that guy at FRC. I didn't realize ... man what a witness that he did the way that he responded.

Barton: The Lord said don't shoot him and we're the haters? Nobody would have said a thing if he had shot that guy that had just shot him and shattered his arm, he was under attack, self defense, he's got a perfect right, he's an officer, he can do that and the Lord says "hey, don't shoot that guy." And somehow we're the haters in this thing. How crazy is that?

Once Again, David Barton Rewrites Modern History

A few weeks back, we wrote a post noting that David Barton's supporters and defenders had been saying that the criticism of his pseudo-scholarship simply boiled down to disagreements over matters of interpretation. We agreed and pointed out that Barton's documented inability to accurately "interpret" events and information is precisely the problem.

And today Barton again demonstrated the fundamental disregard he has for facts or accuracy when he and co-host Rick Green welcomed Rep. Louie Gohmert onto "WallBuilders Live" to defend the witch hunt that he and several other Republicans members of Congress launched against Huma Abedin under the guise of investigating the Muslim's Brotherhood's infiltration of the government.

Here is how Barton framed it:

And so what happened is you have some really high people in the State Department that, it turns out, man they've got some real direct ties to the Muslim Brotherhood.

And so what happens is Louie [Gohmert,] and Michele [Bachmann,] and Trent Franks and some others write a letter and say "have you guys actually investigated these ties?" And so all they did was ask a question and of course the administration when they got that letter, instead of answering the question, they released it to the media and said "look what these guys are doing, it's a witch hunt."

And so they suddenly get attacked for having accused a person of being a part of the Muslim Brotherhood and that's clearly not what the letter said, the letter is out there, easy to read.

On one level, Barton is correct: the letter is out there and easy to read ... but not because the administration leaked it to the media, but because Michele Bachmann posted it on her website!

As a matter of fact, Bachmann and crew sent five different letters to the Inspectors General of the Office of the Director of National Intelligence, the Department of Defense, the Department of Homeland Security, the Department of Justice and the Department of State in which they named several high-ranking advisors who are alleged to have "extensive ties to the Muslim Brotherhood."

So it seems that Barton's "interpretation" of events is pretty accurate - except for the two central claims of his statement.

As we have said several times before, if Barton cannot be relied upon to accurately "interpret" information pertaining to recent events that anyone with access to Google can easily check and verify,  why should anyone trust anything that he says about complex events in early American history?

Barton: People Who Say the Constitution is Secular are Just 'Biblically Illiterate'

Given all the criticism that David Barton has been receiving for his pseudo-scholarship and misrepresentations of history in recent weeks, you would think that he would be making an effort to reign in his tendency to make blatantly false statements ... but you would be wrong.

Several times in recent months we have documented Barton claiming that the Constitution directly quotes the Bible despite the fact that it is obviously and demonstrably untrue. 

But Barton was giving a presentation at Northwoods Community Church in Illinois over the weekend and made the claim yet again, claiming that those who claim the Constitution doesn't quote the Bible are just biblically illiterate:

If you will take the Constitution in one hand and read its language and take a Bible in the other hand and read it, you'll say "wow, that's a direct quotation out of a Bible verse." Yeah, exactly. If you'll look through the Constitution, you'll find so many direct quotations right out of Bible verses because that's what they put in the document.

Now today we're often told, on no, the Constitution is a secular document, it's a godless document. When people tell me that, I know that they're biblically illiterate, they don't recognize Bible verses. If you read the content of that and you know the Bible, you'll say "hey, that's a direct quote out of Ezra 7:24 and there it is out of Deuteronomy 17:5." It's just throughout the Constitution.

Let's take a look at Barton's claims and see if any of them hold up:

Article I, Section 8:

To establish a uniform rule of naturalization, and uniform laws on the subject of bankruptcies throughout the United States.

Leviticus 19:34:

But the stranger that dwelleth with you shall be unto you as one born among you, and thou shalt love him as thyself; for ye were strangers in the land of Egypt: I am the Lord your God.

Does that look like a "direct quote" to you? How about this?

Article II, Section 1:

No person except a natural born citizen, or a citizen of the United States, at the time of the adoption of this Constitution, shall be eligible to the office of President.

Deuteronomy 17:15:

You shall surely set him king over you, whom the LORD your God shall choose: one from among your brethren shall you set king over you: you may not set a stranger over you, who is not your brother.

Nope.  Or this?

Article III, Section 3

Treason against the United States, shall consist only in levying war against them, or in adhering to their enemies, giving them aid and comfort. No person shall be convicted of treason unless on the testimony of two witnesses to the same overt act, or on confession in open court.

Deuteronomy 17:6:

On the testimony of two or three witnesses a man shall be put to death, but no one shall be put to death on the testimony of only one witness.

Again, no. What about this one?

Article III, Section 3:

The Congress shall have power to declare the punishment of treason, but no attainder of treason shall work corruption of blood, or forfeiture except during the life of the person attainted.

Ezekiel 18:20:

The soul who sins is the one who will die. The son will not share the guilt of the father, nor will the father share the guilt of the son. The righteousness of the righteous man will be credited to him, and the wickedness of the wicked will be charged against him.

Not even close.  Barton also claims the idea for separation of powers came from Jeremiah 17:9:

The heart is devious above all else; it is perverse — who can understand it?

And the concept of the three branches of government came from Isaiah 33:22:

For the Lord is our judge, the Lord is our ruler, the Lord is our king; he will save us.

And the idea for elections came from Exodus 18:21:

You should also look for able men among all the people, men who fear God, are trustworthy, and hate dishonest gain; set such men over them as officers over thousands, hundreds, fifties and tens.

Clearly, not a single one of Barton's claims holds up, nor does his claim that tax exemption for churches comes out of Ezra 7:24:

You are also to know that you have no authority to impose taxes, tribute or duty on any of the priests, Levites, singers, gatekeepers, temple servants or other workers at this house of God.

And that is primarly because the Constitution does not actually say anything about tax exemption for churches.

The ironic thing is that Barton says that people who point out that his claims are patently false are "biblically illiterate" when, in fact, it seems that Barton is both constitutionally and biblically illiterate since he is unable to realize that these passages he cites clearly do not say the things that he claims that they do.

Barton: 'If You Want Abortion, You Want Bigger Government'

A few months ago, an effort to legalize abortion in Ireland failed and David Barton hailed the development on today's "Good News Friday" program of "WallBuilders Live."

But Barton was not really concerned about the illegality of abortion in Ireland, as he was mostly just interested in the title of an article about it posted on LifeNews.com that read "Ireland Dáil Defeats Socialist’s Bill to Legalize Abortion" because, to him, it proves that people who support a woman's right to choose are really just socialists:

I love the title on this. It says "Ireland Dáil Defeats Socialist’s Bill to Legalize Abortion." Now the two words that stick out to me there are "socialists" and "abortion." It's interesting how those two things go together. Pro-abortion people tend to be pro-socialism people; that is, they want bigger government. If you want abortion, you want bigger government.

And I don't think I had really thought of socialism and abortion as going side-by-side until I saw the headline to this article that they defeated a socialist's bill to legalize abortion. And, you know, that kind of helps me identify things here in America; I can kind of start looking at people who are pro-abortion and say, you know, they really are pro-socialism, they're pro bigger government, less individual rights and responsibilities.

But I think it's good news for us to identify pro-abortion people with socialism, quite frankly.

Spero: We Must Take to the Streets to Stop the 'Hard-Core Leftist Socialists' Bent on Destroying America

Rabbi Aryeh Spero was the guest on "WallBuilders Live" today where he was promoting his new book "Push Back, Reclaiming the American Judeo-Christian Spirit," which he said he hoped would inspire people to rise up and take to the streets in protest against the "hard-core leftist socialists" who are out to destroy the Constitution and the Judeo-Christian philosophy:

There's no question that there is a very concerted effort by an elitist clique on the left - they used to call themselves liberals; they're really leftists, hard-core leftist socialists - and they want to control every aspect of our life. They have no respect for our religious conscience; they actually have no respect even for the Founding Fathers, the Constitution, they override it whenever they decide to. They called many of our Founding Fathers "dead white males" and by repudiating them, they really wish to repudiate the Constitution, our American ethos, the whole Judeo-Christian system that gave us success.

If we're going to win this battle - we, the citizens state-side here - we've got to rise up and push back; we've got to go into the street, we've got to protest, we've got to rally, we've got to contact all of our people in every type of state legislature, the people on the national level, the local level, the school board because they're fighting us in every single precinct of America to take over the culture, to take over the law, to transform us into something socialist, like Europe, something that has no respect for the Judeo-Christian philosophy. It's our job to fight back; we can't rely on other people to do it for us.

 

Barton: Gay Rights and Reproductive Rights mean 'You are Going Down as a Nation'

While appearing on televangelist Kenneth Copeland’s Believer’s Voice of Victory, disgraced pseudo-historian once again used his platform on Copeland’s show to deliver an attack on gay rights and women’s rights, this time saying that marriage equality and reproductive rights lead to a nation’s destruction. “If a nation says, ‘hey, we want abortion, we want homosexual marriage,’ it is going down,” Barton said, “anytime you move away from what God says, you are going down as a nation.”

Watch:

Copeland: I don’t care who you are, if you turn loose of God and the truth of God, you’re going down, brother! You can’t—it’s created that way; you can’t violate the way it was put together.

Barton: That is why public policies in a nation are so important. If a nation says, ‘hey, we want abortion, we want homosexual marriage,’ it is going down.

Copeland: It’s going down.

Barton: You have taken what God had up top and said ‘we’re not going to do that, we want to go in a different’—anytime you move away from what God says, you are going down as a nation.

Anti-Gay, Anti-Obama Pastor Bill Owens Thinks he is 'Taking the Same Stance Martin Luther King, Jr. Would'

William Owens of the Coalition of African-American Pastors, which is not so much a real coalition as it is a right-wing front group, appeared on WallBuilders Live today with David Barton and Rick Green to denounce President Obama for endorsing same-sex marriage. The virulently anti-gay pastor once again compared his political activism to that of Martin Luther King, Jr., agreeing with Green’s suggestion that he is “taking the same stance Martin Luther King, Jr. would.” Owens also reiterated his claim that he was a civil rights figure, despite little evidence of his role in the movement.

He claimed that Obama’s approach to the black community is “not acceptable” following his endorsement of marriage equality and decision to lead America “down a very immoral road,” and doubted that Obama “even believes it himself, but because of the money and catering to the homosexual community” he took the pro-equality stance anyway. To top it all off, Owens said that “my people in Africa killed each other by the thousands so we can’t give him a pass because he’s black.”

Green: So why is this an important enough issue for ya’ll to move forward like this?

Owens: I think it’s important because it’s changing our culture and we feel that the President, being the first black president number one, holding the most powerful position in the world was put their overwhelmingly by black people. I was in the civil rights movement and we marched for civil rights but it was not for a man to marry a man and a woman to marry a woman, and the President has not given us the courtesy of even answering our request. That is improper, it’s disrespect. You cannot ignore that many pastors and their members and cater to the homosexual community, he’s had Lady Gaga in the White House, he gave same-sex marriage a party in the White House, but to ignore thousands of pastors and their members is not acceptable and we will not give him a pass because he’s black.

Green: You know you said something I think is just absolutely correct; you said ‘by embracing same-sex marriage President Obama is leading this country down an immoral path’ and ‘some things are bigger than the next election’ and you also mentioned that the black church has always been the conscience of America, I think that’s absolutely true. To see this stance, being willing to say we may agree with the President on a ton of other issues but this one is just too big, we cannot stand by and allow him to lead us down this immoral path is a courageous stance. How are people responding to you?

Owens: We almost have that 100,000 signatures, believe it or not, and they are responding daily, sometimes three or four hits a minute, supporting our position. As you know, every state that the marriage amendment has been on the ballot, we have won in every state and the blacks have overwhelmingly voted against same-sex marriage in every state. So the President takes it on himself to put his ideas out there for political reasons, I don’t think he even believes it himself, but because of the money and catering to the homosexual community, well I guarantee you the homosexual community doesn’t have as many people as there are Christians, black and white and all colors. I think he’s put himself in a corner, I don’t think he expected us to come out against him so hard because he’s black, but we’re not giving him a pass because he’s black, he’s leading the country down a very immoral road that it will take years to know the ramifications.

Green: It sounds like you’re taking the same stance Martin Luther King, Jr. would, it’s not the color of his skin but the content of character and what are the actual positions.

Owens: That’s right. We can’t give him a pass because he’s black. My people in Africa killed each other by the thousands so we can’t give him a pass because he’s black. Being black does not make him any more honorable, in this case as far as I’m concerned it’s making him less honorable. He was the first black president and this is what he uses his power for.

David Barton Went 70 for 71 in Shaping the GOP Platform

It is already well-known that Religious Right activists played a central role in drafting and shaping the official Republican Party Platform to reflect their political agenda. 

The extent to which just how thoroughly the Religious Right's agenda dominates the 2012 GOP platform was helpfully exposed last night when David Barton appeared on GBTV to brag that the platform is "the most conservative in my lifetime," revealing that he personally "made 71 motions to add to this platform and 70 of them got passed":

Barton: 'Messing Around With Marriage will Affect Economic Prosperity in the Nation'

While appearing on Kenneth Copeland's "Believer's Voice of Victory" television program, David Barton said that any effort to change the definition of marriage to include "a man and a man or a dog and a horse" will harm a nation's ability to prosper economically "because you're violating commands of God":

Barton: God Will Come Out of Heaven to Oppose Our Unbiblical Economic System

David Barton has returned for another extended appearance on Kenneth Copeland's "Believers Voice of Victory" television program where he made the case that our economic system must be set up to correspond to "the way God says the government should do economics," which means that government needs to "reward those who make a profit."  

But rather than doing that, Barton warned, our government is punishing those who have been successful and using their money to reward those who aren't productive or bail-out those who have run their business into the ground ... "and there's no way God is going to bless that ... because we're not following his laws."   

But not only is God not going to bless our government, He is "actually going to come down and oppose" it, coming straight out of Heaven to say "what's going on down here? This isn't what I ordained":

Barton: Cops Should Have Refused to Arrest Arizona Pastor for Illegally Building a Church

Yesterday on "WallBuilders Live," David Barton and Rick Green discussed the case of Arizona pastor Michael Salman who has recently become a Religious Right cause célèbre because he is  supposedly being persecuted simply because he wanted to hold Bible study meetings at his home. 

In reality, Salman had been attempting to illegally build a church in his back yard and had been holding multiple-weekly church services on his property until he was found guilty of dozens of code violations and sentenced to sixty days in jail.

Barton took up the case today and voiced his outrage, calling on voters in Phoenix to work to remove political leaders in that city for allowing something like this to happen. Barton went on to falsely claim that Salman's home was raided by a SWAT team sent to arrest him and said that law enforcement officers must refuse to participate in things like this because they have an obligation to uphold the Constitution:

And the one we have today, the one we're going to talk about today is a great example is a bunch of political leaders in a city who need to be seriously removed. The fact that they would even think about enforcing this particular ordinance against anybody means that we've got a bad set of leaders there that need to be gone.

...

There needs to be some changes in Phoenix and people really do need to let city hall hear it over this. And I'm really concerned about cops who are willing to go in as a SWAT team to arrest a pastor who's had Bible study. The cops should have said "no, we're not doing that. I mean, we take an oath to uphold the Constitution too; there's the right of assembly, the right of speech, the right of religion. We're not going to go arrest this guy with AR-15s and a SWAT team." At some point, citizens are going to have to say we're not going to be part of this and that should have happened at this point.

Barton: Seventh Amendment Bans Abortion

We are used to watching David Barton give off an aura of expertise by speaking so quickly that people can’t notice when he is making patently false claims and simply making stuff up about America’s founders and the Constitution. For example, last night at the Prayer Rally for America’s Future, the event hosted by Focus on the Family and the Florida Family Policy Council in Tampa’s River Church right before the Republican National Convention, Barton made a rather peculiar claim about the Seventh Amendment.

Here’s what the Seventh Amendment of the US Constitution says:

In Suits at common law, where the value in controversy shall exceed twenty dollars, the right of trial by jury shall be preserved, and no fact tried by a jury shall be otherwise re–examined in any Court of the United States, than according to the rules of the common law.

Read that one more time, because according to David Barton, the Seventh Amendment bans abortion, which he offers as evidence to back up his false assertion that the founders criminalized abortion.

Barton, who has made the same claim about the Seventh Amendment before, does not say how exactly the right to a trial by jury bans abortion, but because Barton is so confident that all of the founders agreed with all of his own theological and political views, he sees no need to explain the connection between the right to jury trials and the legality of abortions.

Watch:

The first belief we have in American government, in American society is that there’s a divine Creator, that’s not a personal belief, that’s an official government belief, that’s in our founding document. The first thing we say is there’s a Creator, the second thing we say is we believe the Creator gave us a certain set of rights, that are God-given inalienable rights, they exist to every person on the globe just because they were born, actually just because they were conceived quite frankly. Founding Fathers recognized abortion as a crime way back in the beginning, that’s why in the Seventh Amendment of the Constitution, part of the common law, you’re not allowed to do abortions because God gives life, not humans, humans can’t take life that God gives so it’s real simple stuff.

Barton: The SCOTUS Health Care Decision is a Sign of Spiritual Revival

Every Friday on 'WallBuilders Live" is "Good News Friday" where David Barton and Rick Green discuss what they consider to be positive developments around the nation and today Barton caught Green off-guard by kicking off the show by citing the Supreme Courts' recent decision upholding the constitutionality of the health care reform legislation.

The ruling was good news, Barton explained, because it contained a line written by Chief Justice John Roberts that declared that it was "not [the Supreme Court's] job to protect the people from the consequences of their political choices." And this sort of statement, Barton declared, is a sign of spiritual revival:

Barton: I'm going to start with a victory, and don't think I'm crazy for choosing this as a victory because I really think it is, but it deals with the Supreme Court's health care decision.

One of the greatest lines out of any Supreme Court case in the last one hundred years is when Chief Justice Roberts said "it is not our job to protect the people from the consequences of their political choices."

Green: Amen to that.

Barton And I say amen! ... Why I really like this is in Jeremiah 31, in that passage God talks about the difference in a nation and how he is going to change the nation, so both Jeremiah and Isaiah talk about this. But he says in the time that a nation's under a curse, he says the proverb is that the fathers have eaten sour grapes and the children's teeth are set on edge. So what they're saying is, the kids say 'hey, it's not our fault; our fathers did this.'

But he says at the Day of the Lord, when he comes and heals the nation, you'll then say each one has eaten sour grapes and his own teeth are set on edge.

Green: You're responsible for your own actions.

Barton: You're responsible for your own stuff; you can't blame this on anybody else. And that's a sign of revival, when you start saying you're responsible for your actions and the court says, hey, you're responsible for your own political decisions, guess what? That is a spiritually good sign. 

Even More Conservative Scholars Publicly Question David Barton's Scholarship

Earlier this month, World Magazine published a piece noting that "conservative Christian scholars" had begun to publicly question the veracity of David Barton's work.  That article and the questions it raised about Barton's work was part of a chain of events that ultimately led Barton's publisher to pull his book from circulation and cancel his contract.

Since then, more and more conservatives have been coming forward with their own questions about Barton's pseudo-history while Barton has focused his response primarily on attacking his most prominent critic, Warren Throckmorton, as some sort of fake Christian who cannot be trusted because he doesn't support the use of reparative therapy to "cure" gays.

But while Barton is intent on attacking Throckmorton's conservative bona fides, conservative scholars continue to undermine Barton's credibility, to which Barton has thus far been unable to respond.

In fact, a new piece published today on the World Magazine website quotes several more Glenn Beck-approved scholars agreeing that Barton's book is misleading and that his claims are wrong: 

The Jefferson Lies commends Daniel Dreisbach, an American University professor, calling him one of the few Jefferson scholars who employs a "sound historical approach," so I asked Dreisbach whether he agreed with Barton. Dreisbach replied that he has a "very hard time" accepting the notion that Jefferson was ever an orthodox Christian, or that Jefferson ever embraced Christianity's "transcendent claims."

...

Louisiana State University professor James Stoner, one of Glenn Beck's "Beck University" lecturers, says Throckmorton and Coulter's book seems "entirely in line" with what he knows about Jefferson's faith. Stoner describes Jefferson as a "rationalist skeptic."

Professor Kevin Gutzman, who has appeared both on WallBuilders radio and the Glenn Beck program, argues that "Jefferson was not a Christian, if the word 'Christian' has any meaning," because he rejected the Bible's "supernatural content." Gutzman thinks Jefferson's skepticism certainly predated 1813. 

Pseudo-Historians Unite: David Barton and Scott Lively use Fake Scholarship to Disguise their Extremist Views

David Barton defends his junk history by pointing to an anonymous group of academics who apparently approve of his “scholarship” while simultaneously saying that people can trust his work because the liberal, secular, academic elite doesn’t approve of it. While Barton refuses to name anyone from his supposed gaggle of admirers in academia, he is touting the support of a fellow pseudo-historian: Scott Lively, who blames the Holocaust on the gay community.

That’s right, Barton, who has the ear of Republican politicians and is helping to write the Republican Party platform, is touting the endorsement of someone who thinks gays brought about the Holocaust.

As Kyle reported yesterday, Lively appeared on WallBuilders Live, Barton’s radio show which he co-hosts with Rick Green, to defend Barton and denounce his critics, namely Professor Warren Throckmorton of Grove City College. Throckmorton co-authored “Getting Jefferson Right,” a book that scrutinizes and debunks many of Barton’s claims in “The Jefferson Lies,” which was so inaccurate it was pulled from publication.

Even before Lively’s appearance on WallBuilders Live, Barton was promoting Lively’s attack on Throckmorton via Twitter and Facebook, arguing that Throckmorton lied about Lively’s involvement in shaping Uganda’s “Kill the Gays” bill and therefore shouldn’t be trusted in whatever he said about Barton. While on WallBuilders Live, Lively said it is “absolutely not true” that he promoted “forced therapy of homosexuals in Uganda”:

However, that is exactly what he told Janet Mefferd back in May, arguing that he wanted Uganda to treat homosexuals just like drunk drivers who have the choice between jail time and therapy, in this case sexual orientation conversion therapy:

This brazen dishonesty is how both Lively and Barton operate. While they like to fashion themselves as historians they are in reality simply political activists.

Similar to how Barton misrepresents the Founders as conservative evangelical Christians to advance his own conservative political agenda, Lively rewrites the history of Nazi Germany to argue that gays and lesbians are responsible for the rise of Nazism and the Holocaust in order to further his own anti-gay politics in the U.S. and abroad.

In “The Pink Swastika,” Lively asserts that “the glaring truth of history is that homosexuals bore a disproportionately large share for the responsibility for the rise of Nazism.” He claims that gays in Germany sought to restore homosexual occult religion and eliminate its Judeo-Christian detractors: “there is a spiritual element to the Holocaust that suggests that it was, in some respects, vengeance against the people whose moral laws had relegated pagan homo-occultism to obscurity and ignominy” (p. 49). According to Lively, “the rise of homosexuality in a Judeo-Christian based culture” inevitably means that “violence and depravity increase” (p. 137).

“The Pink Swastika” later shifts the conversation to the U.S. debate on gay rights, warning that “Nazi themes are common in the homosexual community” today (p. 146) and that American society is heading down the same path as pre-WWII Germany thanks to gay rights (p. 187).

No legitimate historians have given any credibility Lively’s claims that the Nazi party leadership was overwhelmingly composed of gay men. Throckmorton has posted one of the most thorough refutations of Lively’s book. In fact, homosexuals were a targeted for persecution in Nazi Germany and thousands were sent to concentration camps.

Throckmorton and countless others haven’t criticized Lively and Barton’s work out of a malicious desire to smear conservatives, as the two claim, but because it is necessary to call out those like Lively and Barton who are clearly rewriting and twisting history in order to advance their own political goals.

David Barton and the Matter of Interpretation

As David Barton has been fighting to salvage his reputation over the last few weeks, one of the main claims that he and his supporters are making is that the disputes over the veracity of Barton's work all boil down to simple matters of interpretation.

Rick Green, for instance, claims that the attacks on Barton are nothing more than "empty rhetoric using the tiniest of semantics over one fact out of thousands to try and discredit the entire premise of the book."

In Green's view, people are just nitpicking Barton's work because they disagree with his interpretation of facts ... but, as we have repeatedly pointed out, people are questioning Barton's interpretation of facts because he has a long record of intentionally misinterpreting them in order to promote his own agenda.

And today on "WallBuilders Live," Barton offered up another perfect example of this when he discussed the controversy that surrounds Jerry Boykin:

He's actually a three-star general and he got in a lot of trouble from the secular guys because he talked about God in a church. Can you imagine him doing that? He spoke in a church and he talked about God. They beat him up and demanded that he be kicked out of the military and went to the President and said "you can't let a guy speak about God when he is in church" and he's taken abuse and a beating.

He was dis-invited from speaking up at West Point last year under the Obama administration because he is the head of a group that deals with domestic terrorism, that deals with the threat of Islamic terrorism but how it applies itself domestically and the Muslim Brotherhood in the United States. So because he points out where there are threats, he as a guy who recognizes a threat when he sees it, who had Delta Force special forces, was kept from speaking at West Point by the Obama administration.

So that is Barton's "interpretation" of what happened and, you will be shocked to learn, it does not correspond very closely to reality.

In fact, Boykin got in trouble not for talking about God in church but for appearing in full uniform before a religious group to declare that Muslims hated the United States "because we're a Christian nation, because our foundation and our roots are Judeo-Christian ... and the enemy is a guy named Satan" and that Boykin knew the US would win because "I knew my God was bigger than his. I knew that my God was a real God and his was an idol."

After retiring from the military due largely to the controversy he generated with this address, Boykin then turned his attention full time to anti-Islam activism, calling on Christians to “pray over mosques and go on the offensive against Islam while declaring that Islam should not be protected under the First Amendment and that America should ban the construction of mosques. And it was this long and documented history of anti-Islam activism that led Boykin to withdraw from his speaking engagement at West Point.

This perfectly demonstrates why the matter of Barton's reliability as an "interpreter" is central to the concerns about the reliability of his historical claims because, as we have said several times before, if he cannot be relied upon to accurately "interpret" information pertaining to recent events that anyone with access to Google can easily check and verify,  how can anyone trust the arcane claims he makes about complex events in early American history?

WallBuilders Turns to Scott Lively in an to Attempt to Salvage David Barton's Reputation

Things have now gotten so desperate for David Barton and WallBuilders that they are reduced to calling in support from none other than Scott Lively to defend Barton's work by attacking Warren Throckmorton, Barton's primary critic.

Lively, as you know, is widely seen as the inspiration behind Uganda's notorious "kill the gays" legislation and the author of the book "The Pink Swastika," which claims that "the Nazi Party was conceived, organized and controlled throughout its short history by masculine-oriented male homosexuals who hid their sexual proclivities from the public, in part by publicly persecuting one group of their political enemies: out-of-the-closet effeminate-oriented homosexuals aligned with the German Communist Party."

Throckmorton has likewise been a vocal critic of Lively's "scholarship" and so the the geniuses at WallBuilders thought it would be a good idea of have Lively come on the program and explain that what is happening to Barton is the same thing that happened to him:

I had the same kind of run-in with Mr. Throckmorton myself. I'm the author of a history book along with Jewish researcher Kevin Abrams called "The Pink Swastika: Homosexuality in the Nazi Party." Very controversial but heavily documented and Mr. Throckmorton has attempted to attack my work in the very same way.

Why WallBuilders thinks this comparison helps Barton's cause is utterly beyond our comprehension. 

Green and Lively also suggested that Throckmorton is responsible for some sort of widespread conspiracy against anti-gay Religious Right leaders because he is favorably quoted on "really nasty anti-Christian blogs" such as Box Turtle Bulletin, Joe.My.God, and Truth Wins Out and engages in interaction with us here at Right Wing Watch:

Green: I noticed in your article you said just Google his name along with these really nasty anti-Christian blogs like Box Turtle Bulletin, Truth Wins Out, Joe.My.God, I mean they got some really nasty stuff on there ...

Lively: Very nasty.

Green: And apparently he's kind of a champion of these guys. They really kind of see him as a hero. They quote him all the time.

...

Lively: There's a lot of interaction there between him and some of the other people and the group Right Wing Watch ...

Green: Oh yeah, those guys love us. They just love us. They love us so much that they watch us all the time and listen to us all the time. They're always taking stuff out of context and out of quotes ... so to all of our friends at Right Wing Watch and these other liberal blogs and whatnot listening today, we just want to say "hi, love ya, Lord bless you."

Lively: Amen. Hey, I want these people to be saved. I want them to be turned from the foolishness of their positions but I'm not simply going to sit back when they're attacking people who are standing for biblical truth.

It is interesting that Green would accuse us taking things out of context while categotically refusing to even acknowledge all of the instances we have documented of Barton spreading falsehoods, such as claiming that Constitution directly quotes the Bible "verbatim":

Staver: Barton's Book is Required Reading for all Liberty University Law Students

As the controversy over David Barton's shoddy scholarship has roiled for the last several weeks, Mat Staver, dean of the Liberty University Law School, has been one of Barton's most ardent defenders, declaring that he "would put [his] money on David Barton any day" and even proclaiming that he'd be willing to put Barton up "against any historian and would have no question who would win in a debate."

So it was no surprise that Staver was the guest on "WallBuilders Live" today where he spent most of the time attacking one of Barton's main critic Warren Throckmorton, for not being a historian.  Of course, Barton is not a historian either and neither is Staver, for that matter.

But Staver did make an interesting revelation on the program when he explained that Barton's book "Original Intent" is required reading for every law student at Liberty Law School:

We actually use his book "Original Intent" in one of our law school classes. We have a lot of different resources and certainly one of those resources regarding original intent and the Founder's vision and views for this country, we use David Barton's book.

...

In "Foundations of Law" at Liberty University School of Law that every first year law school student goes through the first semester, we have David Barton's book as one of the books, and we have excerpts from that and chapters from it that we use. And our law school students read that and we talk about it and we look at the historical issues involving the Founders.

I began using that when I was teaching the course and now our Associate Dean for Academic Affairs, Rena Lindevaldsen, uses that. One of our professors, Cynthia Dunbar, she uses that book in that "Foundations of Law" course as well and I know that there's other faculty at Liberty University that also are very much advocates of David Barton's work.

The David Barton-Rick Green Pity Party Drags On

David Barton and Rick Green continued their crusade to salvage Barton's tattered reputation by quickly putting together a two-part program on "WallBuilders Live" dedicated mostly to once again attacking Warren Throckmorton has unchristian and untrustworthy - which they know because, among other things, he uses information from Right Wing Watch.

But mostly they just wanted everyone to know that the mounting criticism of Barton's shoddy scholarship is really an effort to "disenfranchise Christians":

Barton: So this really is an attack, not at us per se; this is an attack on religious involvement in general from religious conservatives who have gotten into the process in the last twenty-five years.

Green: They recognize that you are kind of the voice of that for so long. I mean, you've been tireless over the last twenty-five years speaking across the nation and educating us on these things and putting those original documents on-line, putting out there in front of us. So, like you said, they know if they can go after you and somehow taint your image and create this image of you that isn't true that it helps to bring down the whole movement, it helps to kind of disenfranchise Christians, really, from being involved.

Once again, let us state unequivocally that people are not criticizing Barton's scholarship because he is a Christian; they are criticizing it because it is full of falsehoods; falsehoods that Barton's knowingly propagates in order to promote his political agenda.

When we point out that it is not true that "many of the clauses we find in the Constitution are literal, direct quotations out of the Bible," as Barton so regularly claims, it is not just a difference of opinion or a matter of interpretation, but rather undeniable proof that Barton has a documented history of intentionally making false claims.

So why wouldn't Throckmorton cite Right Wing Watch in making the case that Barton's history cannot be trusted?  Especially when one considers that we have dozens and dozens of documented examples of Barton saying false and absurd things? 

David Barton Can't Avoid Growing Criticism of his Pseudo-History

David Barton usually dismisses the daily Right Wing Watch blog posts and two reports on his sham history and litany of patently false and absurd assertions by calling us “radical left social guys” who don’t like America. Barton, who is not a historian and does not submit his work to peer review, says that academics who criticize his “scholarship” are simply elitists who are jealous of his popularity. But as Barton’s unraveling continues, he has now lashed out at his critics by attacking one of his critic’s religious beliefs and insisting that an anonymous group of scholars has approved his work.

But Messiah College professor John Fea notes that Barton’s ability to paint his critics “as godless and liberal” isn’t working as an increasing number of evangelical pastors have denounced him:

Through it all, Barton continues to insist that his interpretation of Thomas Jefferson is accurate despite overwhelming evidence to the contrary. When legitimate historians criticize his work he paints them as godless and liberal. But can all these historians and critics be wrong? Apparently David Barton is the only one out there who has correctly interpreted Thomas Jefferson. This kind of arrogance not only shows a deep disrespect for the work of historians, many of whom have devoted their lives to the study of Jefferson, but, perhaps more importantly, it is an embarrassment to the Christian church. Perhaps Barton needs to take a lesson from Rev. Dudley Rutherford, the evangelical pastor who misinterpreted the story of the Star-Spangled Banner. When Rutherford, the pastor of Shepherd of the Hills Church in Porter Ranch, California, learned that his YouTube presentation contained several inaccuracies, he quickly apologized and pledged to look deeper into the historical record.

But even if we allow Barton to dismiss non-Christian historians, he will have a hard time dismissing his fellow evangelicals. Many of his critics have very solid evangelical credentials. Throckmorton is a Romney supporter (or at least “likes” Romney on his Facebook page) and is a conservative evangelical Christian. When I spoke at Grove City College in January 2012, he apologized for having to miss one of my lectures. It turns out that Throckmorton is an elder at his local Evangelical Free Church and had to attend a meeting there on that particular night. Ray McMillian, one of the Cincinnati pastors who led the boycott of Thomas Nelson, runs an organization called “Race to Unity.” Speakers at Race to Unity events have included evangelical luminaries such as Tony Evans, Joseph Stowell, Ed Dobson, and Bill Hybels.

Gregg Frazer, one of the ten historians chosen by Jay Richards, teaches at The Masters College, a school founded by popular evangelical preacher John MacArthur. (Frazer has also written an excellent book on the religious beliefs of the founding fathers which I highly recommend). Glenn Sunshine is a graduate of Trinity Evangelical Divinity School in Deerfield, IL—certainly not a bastion of godless liberalism. Charles Dunn, who has endorsed Getting Jefferson Right, is a Distinguished Professor in the School of Government at Pat Robertson’s Regent University. Even the folks at WorldView Weekend, an organization that used to partner with Barton, have turned their collective backs on him.

Robert Parham of the Baptist Center for Ethics mentions that a number of Baptist scholars have consistently criticized Barton’s “dubious” work:

One of the nation's premier historians, Martin Marty, wrote critically of Barton's new book in May.

"Barton is publishing 'The Jefferson Lies,' which most historians would title 'Barton's Lies about Jefferson,'" said Marty.

A year earlier, Marty said that Barton cherry-picked material.

Another preeminent historian and a Baptist, Richard Pierard, referred to Barton's work as "pseudo-history."

Bruce Prescott, another Baptist scholar and leading advocate for the separation of church and state, wrote in 2010: "For more than two decades, David Barton has been deceiving many honest but naïve Christians with a revisionist history about our system of government that promotes the mythology of Christian nationalism."

In addition to columns, EthicsDaily.com has had news stories about Barton's role in shaping the public education curriculum in Texas.

Now, conservatives are challenging Barton's use of history and distancing themselves from his misuse of history. When Thomas Nelson Publishers backs away from Barton, one knows Barton's work is dubious.

But according to Barton’s deputy Rick Green, their group WallBuilders need not respond in a serious way to any criticism since criticism of them is just like the Nazis’ anti-Semitic propaganda.

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WallBuilders is an organization founded by Republican Party activist and self-proclaimed historian David Barton for the purpose of "educating the nation concerning the Godly foundation of our country." Barton and his work are routinely cited by those on the Right who claim that the United States was founded by Christian men on explicitly Christian principles. MORE >

Wallbuilders Posts Archive

Kyle Mantyla, Tuesday 11/04/2014, 3:36pm
Laurence White, pastor of Our Savior Lutheran Church in Houston, Texas, was the guest on today's broadcast of "WallBuilders Live" where, predictably, the controversy over the city government having subpoenaed documents, including sermons, from a few local pastors came up for discussion. White remarked that by issuing these subpoenas, which have since been withdrawn, Satan had finally "tipped his hand." "What's happening is The Adversary, in his arrogance and his pride, has become so bold that he's tipped his hand," White said. "He's usually... MORE >
Kyle Mantyla, Wednesday 10/29/2014, 2:20pm
On the "WallBuilders Live" radio program today, David Barton declared that he was "grateful" to see that the most recent "Left Behind" remake had bombed at the box office because, he said, the books and movies teach an unbiblical eschatology that causes Christians to check out of the culture wars as they simply wait for Jesus to take them away in The Rapture. "The movie is a complete bust," Barton rejoiced. "It did really pathetic at the box office ... and quite frankly I was somewhat happy the movie was a bust." Barton said that the books,... MORE >
Kyle Mantyla, Friday 10/24/2014, 12:10pm
Most of this week's "WallBuilders Live" radio program has consisted of excerpts from the new DVD series "Constitution Alive! A Citizen's Guide to the Constitution" featuring Rick Green and David Barton. On yesterday's program, Barton explained that that the Constitution’s requirement that members of Congress and the president take an oath to "preserve, protect and defend the Constitution of the United States" was the Founding Fathers' way of infusing religion into the document since an oath is a "direct appeal to God" to hold... MORE >
Kyle Mantyla, Monday 10/20/2014, 12:25pm
Once again, David Barton has joined prosperity gospel preacher Kenneth Copeland for another week of programs encouraging Christians to be sure to vote in the upcoming midterm elections, especially for candidates running for the U.S. Senate because it is through judges that America with either be cursed or blessed. Citing passages from II Chronicles and Psalms, Barton declared that the Bible tells us that judges are to be "ministers of God" and are therefore obligated to "make the same decision that [God] would make" when hearing cases. If Christians "want our land to... MORE >
Kyle Mantyla, Friday 10/10/2014, 11:50am
Several times, we have heard David Barton make the absurd claim that biblical law was directly incorporated into the U.S. Constitution through the Seventh Amendment, which he then uses to assert that laws legalizing abortion and gay marriage are unconstitutional. Lately, Barton has tried to bolster this argument by citing an obscure 1913 Texas Supreme Court ruling in a case called Grigsby v Reib, which he claims proves that America can never accept a definition of marriage that differs from God's definition. In Barton's telling, this case was about efforts to attain legal recognition... MORE >
Kyle Mantyla, Tuesday 09/09/2014, 1:57pm
Today's episode of "WallBuilders Live" featured an audio excerpt from David Barton's "Biblical Principles and the Political Process" DVD in which Barton explained that Christians must be in charge of crafting public policy at all levels in America or else God will be unable to bless this nation and all citizens will suffer as a consequence. As Barton explained, God measures the righteousness of a nation "by the public policies they have and how well those policies conform to God's standards." Repeating his false claims about the non-discrimination... MORE >
Kyle Mantyla, Thursday 09/04/2014, 3:01pm
On today's episode of "WallBuilders Live," David Barton and Rick Green responded to a question from a listener who complained that she was watching a program about extraterrestrials on the History Channel recently in which some professor from Notre Dame University asserted that Thomas Jefferson "hated Christianity and considered it a dangerous religion" that was responsible for atrocities such as the Inquisition. As if that set-up was not already strange enough, Barton then launched into an explanation that "American Christianity" was nothing like the "... MORE >
Kyle Mantyla, Wednesday 09/03/2014, 2:24pm
Florida state Senator Alan Hays was the guest on "WallBuilders Lives" today, explaining the need for his legislation that would require every eighth grade student in the state to watch Dinesh D'Souza's ridiculous film "America: Imagine The World Without Her." As Hays explained to host Rick Green, requiring schools to show this film will help to stimulate an intellectual exchange of ideas among students who otherwise will learn "nothing but a bunch of dogma." And this is vitally import, he explained, because "over the years, there have been hundreds... MORE >