Walid Shoebat is a former Muslim who converted to Christianity and now makes a living peddling his anti-Islam "expertise" to various right-wing groups.
Despite the fact that his tale of having grown up as a Muslim terrorist is highly suspect, Shoebat is regularly welcomed onto shows like the American Family Association's "Today Issues," as he was this morning, to explain to AFA president Tim Wildmon that Jesus predicted that Christians would be beheaded by Muslims and that the Antichrist would be a Muslim.
Citing Revelation 20, Shoebat declared that "Jesus prophetically proclaimed that the Christians will be beheaded in the End of Days," which seems to be an odd misreading of this passage, as it was John, the author of Revelation, not Jesus, who said that "I saw the souls of those who had been beheaded because of their testimony about Jesus and because of the word of God" when he was taken up to Heaven.
Even Wildmon seemed confused by Shoebat's claim, but Shoebat continued on undaunted, declaring that a key component of the Antichrist will be the denial of the Father and the Son, which must mean that the Antichrist will be a Muslim.
"How hard is it to unravel the Scripture?," Shoebat asked. "When I read it, I read it as a Muslim - as a Muslim! - and I saw myself in Scripture as the enemy of God and I repented."
The rise of ISIS and its attacks on Christians, Shoebat predicted, will eventually lead to a Christian revival in America.
"So yes, this is a curse," he asserted, "but sometimes it's like the manure: it stinks to high Heaven but it makes sweet fruit in the end. I know, in the end, that America will be victorious. How do I know that? From the Bible":
End Times radio host Rick Wiles seems to have mixed feelings about the Ebola virus. On one hand, Wiles speculated a few weeks ago that if Ebola were to become a global pandemic, it “ could solve America’s problems with atheism, homosexuality, sexual promiscuity, pornography and abortion .” On the other hand, Wiles is pretty sure that American Christians are on the verge of being rounded up and imprisoned and that an Ebola outbreak might give President Obama a convenient excuse to pack Americans into FEMA camps .
On his “Trunews” broadcast yesterday, Wiles came down again on the anti-Ebola side, worrying that it would lead to the government enforcing a ban on Americans going to church. “We may find ourselves one day being told by soldiers, ‘You can’t go to church,’” he warned.
One of the most persistent talking points that the anti-immigrant movement has been throwing out about the influx of Central American children fleeing to the United States has been the fear that the children will carry exotic diseases such as Ebola and introduce them to the United States. These fears are not only completely unfounded, but play on some of the most insidious anti-immigrant stereotypes.
So, it was a pleasant surprise today when someone at the right-wing outlet Newsmax neglected to do their homework and invited an actual infectious disease expert to discuss the supposed problem with host J.D. Hayworth, a former Republican congressman.
Hayworth eagerly prompted Dr. Peter Hotez, an infectious disease specialist at the Texas Children’s Hospital, to confirm the anti-immigrant movement’s fears about Central American children bringing “widespread infectious diseases into the United States.”
“I actually think the threat of diseases coming into the United States from Central America is fairly remote,” Hotez told a shocked Hayworth.
Hotez then went on to explain how the real problem causing the spread of disease in the U.S. is widespread poverty, at which point Hayworth cut off the interview.
Correction: This post originally misspelled Dr. Hotez's name.
The protests in Ferguson, Missouri, this month presented a dilemma for the anti-government Right. The activists and elected officials who spent the spring fawning over lawless Nevada rancher Cliven Bundy’s stand against what they saw as an overbearing federal government changed their tune or just went silent when a police force armed with military weapons cracked down on mostly peaceful protesters in Ferguson.
On Tuesday, Gawker’s Adam Weinstein examined the “inherent contradiction” in the membership of St. Louis police officer Dan Page — who was suspended after he shoved a CNN reporter and the video of a violent rant he made came to light — in Oath Keepers, a group whose entire founding purpose is a fear of violent government overreach against unarmed citizens.
…For all their delusions, the Oath Keepers seem tailor-made to counter the surreal overarmed police state that may have played a role in Michael Brown's death by cop in Ferguson, and that has ebbed and flowed through the streets there ever since. The oath that Oath Keepers keep is to disobey a set of orders they believe may be given by government authorities . Hence they swear, in part:
- We will NOT obey any order to blockade American cities, thus turning them into giant concentration camps.
- We will NOT obey any orders to confiscate the property of the American people, including food and other essential supplies.
- We will NOT obey any orders which infringe on the right of the people to free speech, to peaceably assemble, and to petition their government for a redress of grievances.
As Weinstein notes, the Missouri chapter of the Oath Keepers has sent a “letter of warning” to Missouri Gov. Jay Nixon in opposition to police tactics against the protesters. But the Oath Keepers’ opposition seems to be based less on principle than on strategy — in a separate blog post, the national group objects to the police failure to stop looting while it took aim at peaceful protesters. The blog post also notes that Oath Keepers on the scene in Ferguson were “talking consensus for the benefit of the police and the people equally.” This role of self-appointed mediator is in sharp contrast to the group’s show of force at the Bundy ranch.
Ferguson has exposed some common ground between the anti-government Right and mainstream civil liberties groups — for instance, both the extreme right-wing Gun Owners of America and the American Civil Liberties Union have signed on to a plan to end the program that sends discount military equipment to local police departments.
Gun Owners of America’s executive director Larry Pratt, however, has been uncharacteristically quiet about Ferguson, linking on Twitter to the Missouri Oath Keepers’ letter to Nixon, but also to an article claiming that Michael Brown wasn’t unarmed because he was “young and strong.” GOA sent out an email arguing that violence in Ferguson was just another reason why people should be allowed to own AR-15s.
Sheriff Richard Mack, the founder of a group that believes that county sheriffs are the highest law enforcement officers in the land, has also been strangely silent on Ferguson, despite having spent time rallying against the federal government at the Bundy ranch with armed militia groups that he compared to Rosa Parks.
And then there’s Sheriff Joe Arpaio, a Bundy ally who, as the situation in Ferguson escalated, crowed about the combat supplies that he had amassed for his own department.
Yes, the relative silence of the anti-government Right on Ferguson is inconsistent, but so is their view of the Ferguson protests: In the view of many right-wing activists, the protesters in Ferguson weren’t standing up to the government, they were themselves tools of the government.
There is a school of thought among right-wing commentators that the protests in Ferguson were orchestrated — or at the very least encouraged — by Attorney General Eric Holder and the Obama administration in order to stir up racial resentments and increase Democratic chances in the 2014 midterm elections.
This paranoid scenario is in line with Pratt’s fear, expressed last year, that President Obama is on the verge of starting a race war against white people.
The Ferguson protests exposed a key fault line in the anti-government "Patriot" movement: they are against government overreach, but their definition of what counts as government never seems to be quite clear.
On today's "700 Club," Pat Robertson seemed oddly excited about the prospect of the radical Islamic group ISIS taking control over Iraq and Syria because it would be signal that the End Times are near.
Robertson cited Isaiah 19, which states that, in the End Times, Egypt and Assyria will join together and turn to the Lord, along with Israel and they will be "a blessing on the earth":
23 In that day there will be a highway from Egypt to Assyria. The Assyrians will go to Egypt and the Egyptians to Assyria. The Egyptians and Assyrians will worship together. 24 In that day Israel will be the third, along with Egypt and Assyria, a blessing on the earth. 25 The Lord Almighty will bless them, saying, “Blessed be Egypt my people, Assyria my handiwork, and Israel my inheritance.”
The nation of Assyria no longer exists, but Robertson said that with ISIS taking over large portions of Iraq and Syria, it could soon be brought back to together, which means that there is an opportunity for the international community to gather together all of the Kurds in Iraq, Iran, Syria, and Turkey to serve as "the lynchpin" that could bind all of these nations together.
"Call it Assyria," Robertson suggested, "and let them encompass current Syria and current Iraq and we would be fulfilling Bible prophecy."
"It might well happen," he said. "Was that prophetic or I'm just playing games?"
On her “Mission America” radio program yesterday, Linda Harvey weighed in on the National Organization for Marriage’s boycott of Target in response to the company’s filing of a court brief in support of marriage equality.
Harvey echoed NOM in taking particular issue with Target’s characterization of same-sex marriage bans as “bans” and “discrimination.”
“Have you noticed how this is how headlines often read these days?” Harvey said. “They talk about laws on natural marriage as being ‘bans’ on same-sex so-called marriage. And that’s incorrect because people who are male can still marry people who are female. The only obstacle for a few people is the presence of unnatural desires. Those desires can change with a different mind and heart.”
Later in the broadcast, Harvey read from a response she received from Target, in which the company expressed support for the “LGBT community.”
“So where’s the inclusivity for traditional values families? Target also thinks there’s an LGBT community, but what about a Christian morals community? Do they get the fact that most people have had it up to here with pushing deviance and perversion into everyone’s lives in America? That most Americans don’t accept the idea of two men or two women being married when they are obviously not?”
Unsurprisingly, Santorum cites a number of myths about religious liberty in schools, including claiming that “you can’t pray in school” and that public schools "can't talk about the impact" of the Bible on "Western civilization." In reality, students have a constitutionally protected right to pray in school, as long as that prayer is not school-sponsored. In addition, schools are allowed to teach about the Bible and its impact on history.
The movie argues that the observant are being forced to practice in private, for few hours in church on Sundays. But on a personal level, can’t you observe your religion wherever you want?
Not necessarily. You can’t pray in school, but it’s good to have prayer. Are people offended by prayer? Sure. But the constitution gives us the right to offend. There are a lot of things today in America that offend me.
Right, but isn’t school different? There are lots of rules in school that don’t apply to the rest of society.
This is a fallacy. By making such a judgment, you’re communicating what’s good and bad. Not having the Bible taught in school is a mistake. The Bible is the basis upon which Western civilization was built. It is the most influential book of all. And yet it’s not taught. In school, they can’t talk about the impact of this book. This is, in fact, putting forth a view of history that is ahistorical. It’s hard to not look at the history of Western civilization and not see faith.
So what about the Quran? Should that be taught in school, too?
I would absolutely encourage more teaching about Islam. Maybe 50 years ago, when Islam had third-world status and not international status—maybe that was different. But given what’s going on, it’s important to teach it.
End Times broadcaster Rick Wiles said during Tuesday’s broadcast that “Trunews” will go off the air in order to let Wiles launch a new radio show, which sounds a lot like “Trunews.”
Wiles said “the American public has checked out of reality” and failed to stop President Obama — “the communist traitor in the White House who is openly helping jihadist”— in his quest to establish a “dictatorship” and “defile the military with sodomy.”
“He has ended the Constitution and yet nobody is doing anything,” Wiles said. “The people have checked out, they are gone and we are now in a dictatorship.”
As a result of these developments, Wiles said God wants him to end “Trunews” and launch a “new radio program” to provide listeners “the spiritual food that you need to get through the storm that is coming” because “you don’t need any more news or information.”
“The storm is upon us, it is here,” Wiles said.
- Lauren Windsor @ The Nation: Caught on Tape: What Mitch McConnell Complained About to a Roomful of Billionaires (Exclusive).
- Jeremy Hooper @ GLAAD: His other tactics failing, NOM president turns to anti-trans fear-mongering.
- Ian Millhiser @ Think Progress: Gov. Bobby Jindal’s Bizarre Scheme To Stop His Own Education Plan By Suing The Obama Administration.
- Asawin Suebsaeng @ The Daily Beast: The GOP's Weird Anti-Dem Video Game, Starring a Frat-Boy Elephant.
- Caitlin MacNeal @ TPM: Steve King: Executive Action On Immigration Could Trigger Shutdown.
- John Avignone @ Salon: Anatomy of a Fox News smear: Ann Coulter, Matt Drudge and the “dumbest person on the Internet.”
- Pastor Steve Kern, husband of rabidly anti-gay Oklahoma legislator Sally Kern, lost his own bid for state office yesterday.
- William Gheen of Americans for Legal Immigration PAC is organizing "71 rallies across the country this weekend to rally support for the nation's beleaguered law enforcement officers and veterans."
- Mat Staver says the fact that judges keep striking down gay marriage bans is undermining the legitimacy of the judiciary: "When judges begin to cross the line - and I think they certainly do when they have the audacity to say that you cannot affirm the natural, created order of marriage as between a man and a woman - that ultimately undermines confidence of the people in the judiciary."
- The American Decency Association is targeting Michigan Governor Rick Snyder for agreeing to speak to The Islamic Society of North America because ISNA "is a radical Muslim organization that owns and runs mosques throughout North America, functioning as an 'umbrella organization' and 'clearinghouse' to connect all Muslim activities in the United States."
- Finally, Bryan Fischer spent an entire segment of his radio broadcast today discussing Michael Sam's showering habits.
Fischer: Michael Brown Attacked Police Officer Because He Was 'Hyped Up On Marijuana'
8/18/14 @ 4:10pm
Tea Party Of Louisiana Falls For Hoax Article: 'Common Core Turns Students Gay'
8/19/14 @ 5:15pm
Michelle Duggar Joins Smear Campaign Against Fayetteville LGBT Nondiscrimination Ordinance
8/19/14 @ 10:35am
Larry Klayman: Obama Wants To Rename The White House 'The Black House,' Start A 'Race War'
8/18/14 @ 11:10am
Pat Robertson: Healing Prayers Sometimes Don't Work Because People 'Enjoy Their Sickness'
8/19/14 @ 11:45am