Religifying The Tea Party Movement

We've noted before how, on a national level, the Tea Party movement has been more than happy to allow the Religious Right to participate while openly rejecting their social agenda. In essence, the Tea Party movement's position has been that if the Religious Right wants to sign on to their smaller government/fiscal responsibility agenda, they are welcome to do so, but shouldn't expect Tea Party activists to return the favor.

But on a local level, it has been someone of a different story, as Religious Right activists have been regularly participating in Tea Party rallies, which is creating a weird dynamic whereby Tea Party rallies are starting to look more and more like Religious Right rallies:

It was a different kind of venue for the South Atlanta Tea Party. The grassroots group sponsored its first pastors breakfast May 12 at the Tyrone Depot. Speakers at the breakfast included Ken Fletcher of the Alliance Defense Fund and Gary DeMar of American Vision.

Topics at the prayer breakfast included the threats to religious freedom and the persecution of the church, restoring the church to its Biblical foundations and America’s Christian heritage.

“We felt like we should do a breakfast, though we didn’t know what would come of it,” organizer Claudia Eisenberg said. “But it was a great thing and it was successful. We invited 100 pastors and 54 showed up.”

Eisenberg commenting later said she felt such a venue was appropriate for the pro-American, pro-freedom, pro-Constitution tea party movement.

“I feel like there is a sleeping giant in our country. And it’s the church. The church was silent when prayer was removed from our schools. The white churches were silent during the civil rights movement. And the church has been largely silent for much of the time on abortion and gay marriage. I think the government has silenced the churches by making them file as tax-exempt organizations,” Eisenberg said.

“So today, either the churches don’t want to speak out or can’t speak out. My hope was that the speakers could help awaken the sleeping giant. (Fletcher and DeMar) let us know that you don’t have to live in fear when speaking out,” Eisenberg said.

Fellow South Atlanta Tea Party organizer Cindy Fallon after the meeting agreed that inviting Fletcher and DeMar to speak to ministers was appropriate for the grassroots organization.

“We wanted to alert churches and pastors about the slide to socialism,” said Fallon. “The speeches were informative and the feedback was positive. Hopefully, events like this will get people in churches more involved so they can be more knowledgeable. We need to promote churches and the Bible in the affairs of this nation.”

We are very familiar with this sort of talk ... just not coming from so-called Tea Party activists.