As President Obama and world leaders debate whether to go ahead with this year’s planned G-8 meeting in Sochi after Russia’s military incursion into Ukraine, American Religious Right leaders are facing a diplomatic dilemma of their own.
In September, social conservative leaders from around the globe, including representatives of several major American Religious Right groups are planning to hold the annual World Congress of Families gathering at the Kremlin. The gathering is supported by political leaders in Russian Orthodox Church and will include a joint session with the Russian parliament.
American social conservatives have rallied – with varying levels of enthusiasm – to support Russian President Vladimir Putin as his government has passed aseries of anti-gay laws and joined with the church to take up other “family values” issues. These activists, in praising Russia’s renewed push on issues such as gay rights, have largely chosen to ignore the role that social issues are playing in Putin's larger plans.
Issues such as gay rights, abortion rights, and population growth aren't a side project for Putin – they're closely entwined with his tightening grip on power and what Julia Ioffe calls his “appetite for expansion.” For instance, as Buzzfeed's Lester Feder has reported extensively, Russia and its allies in Ukraine and throughout Eastern Europe have riled up anti-gay sentiment as part of a larger agenda of fomenting distrust of the EU and the West. Putin’s anti-gay crackdown has also been useful in promoting nationalist sentiment within Russia and to provide a useful scapegoat as he tightens his grip on power.
When Larry Jacobs of the Rockford, Illinois-based World Congress of Families gushes that “the Russians might be the Christian saviors of the world” or when former Fox News producer Jack Hanick, who has been active in anti-gay causes in Russia, says that “God called on” Russia to “stand up for traditional values,” they are playing into Putin’s own narrative.
In October, leaders from major U.S. Religious Right groups including the National Organization for Marriage, Alliance Defending Freedom and Focus on the Family traveled to Moscow for a planning meeting for the upcoming conference, where they met with Yelena Mizulina, a member of parliament at the head of the Kremlin's social conservative push and coauthor of the infamous "gay propaganda" bill.
In addition, nearly every major Religious Right group in the country is an official paying “partner” of the World Congress of Families; groups including the Family Research Council, the American Family Association, Concerned Women for America, Alliance Defending Freedom, Focus on the Family and the National Organization for Marriage, pay an annual $2,500 fee to support the organization, which is an offshoot of the Illinois-based Howard Center for Family, Religion and Society.
The American Right has found Putin's Russia to be an ally of convenience as they work to build an international movement opposing gay rights, choice, and religious pluralism. But how far are they willing to take the relationship?
Organizations:World Congress of Families , National Organization for Marriage, Howard Center for Family Religion and Society , Focus on the Family , Family Research Council, Concerned Women for America, American Family Association , Alliance Defending Freedom
At last year's Values Voter Summit, Star Parker attacked the gay rights movement, telling gay people to "keep it private."
Now, Parker is warning that "the 'gay rights' crusade" wants "to push Christian reality, once and for all, into the closet and to lock the door."
Parker writes in a WorldNetDaily column this week, entitled, "'Gay' Agenda: A Cultural War Against Christians," that the demise of Arizona's "right-to-discriminate" bill means that Christian-owned businesses will lose their First Amendment rights and be "put out of business."
The reality is that the “gay rights” crusade is not about a struggle for justice, but rather it is a cultural war.
Homosexual activists understand the ongoing erosion of traditional values as a pillar of our society and use this opportunity to push Christian reality, once and for all, into the closet and to lock the door.
The cultural script has been re-written such that Christians have been put in a position of either rejecting the precepts and prohibitions of their religion, or being faithful to them and being branded as against “equality.”
Christians have been put in the untenable position that being true to their faith means, by the new standards set in our society, being labeled a bigot and then being exposed to being put out of business.
Let’s keep in mind that the idea of religious freedom only means something as long as religion means something.
It is critical that Christians draw the line and continue the struggle and not allow religion or religious freedom to be compromised. Individuals or businesses forced to supply goods or services for activities against the precepts of their faith must refuse and call forth their protection under the First Amendment of the U.S. Constitution.
"Coach" Dave Daubenmire doesn't understand what is so "special" about homosexuality that people get so upset when he criticizes, since nobody gets mad when he criticizes other sins like alcoholism and lying.
In fact, it is not all that long ago, Daubenmire reminded his viewers, when homosexuality was widely considered to be a mental illness, just as "schizophrenic pedophilia" is considered to be one today. Be he didn't "want to even get into the debate because the gay bashers will get after me again" for even bringing up the issue.
"What is so special about that sin?" Daubenmire wanted to know. "Why is it there's a movement behind that that is one of the most aggressive movements out there attacking Christian values?"
- John Stanton @ BuzzFeed: Rudderless Tea Party Searches For Meaning Five Years On.
- Andy Towle @ Towleroad: United States, EU, Australian Diplomats Issue Joint Denunciation of Uganda's Anti-Homosexuality Law.
- David Corn @ Mother Jones: Ted Cruz Used a Senate Aide to Book Speaking Gigs for His Firebrand Father.
- Dylan Scott @ TPM: The Week The 'Religious Freedom' Movement Hit Its High Water Mark.
- Alexander Zaitchik @ Media Matters: Joe Arpaio's Racist Roast And Other Stories From The Western Conservative Conference.
- Bryan Fischer says that Gov. Rick Perry "may be our last, best hope of reclaiming America and returning it to its constitutional foundations" by refusing to comply with the ruling striking down Texas' ban on same-sex marriages.
- Dave Daubenmire thinks that he is owed an explanation by the high school that didn't hire him to coach its football team.
- Glenn Beck hated the new movie "Non-Stop" so much that he spent an entire segment spoiling the plot so that nobody will go to see it.
- AFA tells people to consider boycotting Walt Disney World because "they are bullying the Boy Scouts of America to allow openly LGBT xyz adults as leaders."
- Steven Seagal thinks that President Obama should be impeached and apparently some people actually care what Steven Seagal thinks.
- Jeff Allen helpfully warns that "if the truly tolerant and moderating influence of Christianity were ever taken out of the way, the Muslims would quickly turn on their perversity-pushing homosexual friends."
- Finally, Gary Cass is not happy: "What was once considered so perverted that it would never have been discussed in polite company, has now become mainstream. Athletes, actors and prominent public figures are considered 'heroes' because they are sexually deviant. Now they are forcing Christians to salute their rainbow flags by requiring them to participate in fake homosexual marriage. They are pushing Christians out of the wedding industry, just like abortion is pushing Christians out of healthcare industry. The message that’s being sent to Christians is 'Either violate your conscience or you are not allowed to participate in our economy!'"
Another leader of the right-wing Quiverfull movement is now in danger of losing his post over a sex scandal. Homeschooling advocate Bill Gothard has been put on administrative leave from the organization he heads, the Institute in Basic Life Principles, in response to allegations from thirty-four different women that he engaged in sexual harassment and failed to notify Child Protective Services about abuse claims.
The allegations against Gothard are chronicled on the website Recovering Grace, which aims to expose the activist’s record of “emotional, spiritual, and sexual abuse.”
The revelations about Gothard’s alleged misconduct are another blow to the patriarchal, anti-birth control Quiverfull movement, which suffered a setback last year when Vision Forum head Doug Phillips resigned because of an extramarital affair.
Gothard’s Institute in Basic Life Principles has been championed by conservative figures including Rick Perry and Sarah Palin, who attended one of the institute’s conferences and adopted its “Character Cities” program as mayor of Wasilla, Alaska. Mike Huckabee has provided an endorsement of the group for its website: “As a person who has actually been through the Basic Seminar, I am confident that these are some of the best programs available for instilling character into the lives of people.” GOP mega-donor Jim Leininger was once a member of the IBLP’s advisory board.
After Gothard’s close ties to Florida congressman Daniel Webster became an issue in a 2010 congressional election, Sarah Posner released an exposé on how the IBLP promotes marital submission and cult-like practices.
She quoted critics who said Gothard instilled a “culture of fear” and preached “the terrible picture of the chain of command in the family with the husband as the hammer, the wife as the chisel and the children as the gems in the rough... The ghastly picture is that he beats on her and she chips on them.” One woman who belonged to the movement said that Gothard taught that women “don’t have any rights.”
He also claimed that he had an “ability to heal ‘stress’ and cancer” and instructed men on how to guard against Satanic attacks on his family.
He used the graphic of a thermometer to illustrate the moral temperature of society. The lowest and healthiest temperature was the ideal characterized by a spiritually moral society guided by the Laws of God. The next level up showing a rising unhealthy temperature was the development of concupiscence where the soulical natural man with his sensual cravings had begun to dominate and suppress the spiritual. The next level up representing the highest and most dangerous threat to a vibrant society was blatant perversion or homosexuality. Gothard said “That when a society reaches the point of condoning perversion, God will destroy that society” (Israel and Rome are examples from the past).
This wouldn’t be the first scandal for the Gothard family either, as “Gothard’s own brother, who worked for IBLP, was dismissed from his organization after it was discovered that he was having sex with students.”
The Baptist website Ethics Daily reported on abuse allegations stemming from the institute’s “cult-like” and “abusive” practices back in 2007.
One woman who recounted her experience working for Gothard on Recovering Grace said that IBLP board members were well aware of complaints from girls as young as fifteen-years-old:
What I did not know was that in the Summer and Fall of 1997, after the San Jose conference and around the time I arrived at Headquarters, the father of one of the young men on the San Jose trip had approached the IBLP Board with a spectrum of concerns about Gothard’s conduct, particularly his penchant for taking young girls on road trips and conducting himself in a questionable manner with them while on those trips. I do not know what Gothard’s verbal or written response was to the Board when presented with these concerns, but I know firsthand that his conduct with me and other young women did not alter in the months after the Board asked him to change his behavior. The other girls and I were all between 15 and 24 years of age.
I stayed and worked at Headquarters because it was too late for me to start college that year, and because I wanted to make a success of my first job. I stopped explaining away Gothard’s creepy and invasive behavior with young women, although I believed myself powerless to do anything about it. I repeatedly saw him initiate long hand-holding sessions with various young women on staff wherein he would rub and massage their hands as he gazed into their eyes. I heard him praise two of my housemates effusively for their “discipline of figure” after one of them lost weight during a serious illness and the other started exhibiting all symptoms of full-on anorexia nervosa, while other girls were “reassigned” from Headquarters for becoming too heavy. I tentatively discussed Gothard’s hyper-tactile behavior with girls who were or had been in my place. I saw girls rotate on and off of Gothard’s roster of favored companions and stopped trying to convince myself that every brush of his hand against a thigh must be a unique accident. There were always between two and six girls on this rotation, and I couldn’t figure out how to get off of it.
John Derbyshire is the columnist and one-time CPAC panelist who was fired from his job at the National Review after he wrote a particularly racist rant, and has now set up shop at the white nationalist site VDARE.
Although he has been largely ostracized by the mainstream media, Derbyshire occasionally still turns up on the fringe, most recently in a series of interviews with blogger Joseph Cotto, who frequently writes up interviews of various fringe-right figures for the open “communities” section of the Washington Times. Cotto posted two interviews with Derbyshire on another platform, Communities Digital News, this week, in which Derbyshire attacks the “mealy-mouthed cringing betas” at the head of the Republican Party and declares that “the future of the conservative movement is as a home for white ethnocentrism.”
Speaking with Cotto about efforts to expand the Republican base, Derbyshire says he is “deeply pessimistic” because “practically all educated black Americans, for example, are communists” and “white conservatives are the only people in the U.S.A. trying to ‘transcend contentious racial issues.’"
He concludes that he is forced to agree with his “friend,” white nationalist Jared Taylor that “whites may as well start asserting themselves and join in fighting for the spoils. If that’s right, ‘colorblind conservatism’ is a dead end, and the future of the conservative movement is as a home for white ethnocentrism.”
Making the Republican Party more inclusive is a big goal of center-right politicos these days. Nonetheless, minorities are still not flocking to right-of-center candidates. What can be said about this delicate matter?
John Derbyshire tells Communities Digital News that he is “(d)eeply pessimistic”.
Derbyshire continues: “‘Not flocking’ is putting it mildly. Practically all educated black Americans, for example, are communists. And white conservatives are the **only** people in the U.S.A. trying to ‘transcend contentious racial issues.’ Everyone else is keenly exploiting them for group advantage and personal enrichment.
“Integration has occurred in some of the upper strata of our society, but everywhere else ethnic disaggregation proceeds apace. I’m an integrationist personally (very personally) but the trend lines are plain.
“I am reluctantly coming to agree with my friend Jared Taylor of American Renaissance: whites may as well start asserting themselves and join in fighting for the spoils.
“If that’s right, ‘colorblind conservatism’ is a dead end, and the future of the conservative movement is as a home for white ethnocentrism.”
In a separate article, Cotto reports that Derbyshire is equally pessimistic about bringing more women into the Republican fold: “Women are just like that. One thing we might try would be putting some alpha males up front, instead of mealy-mouthed cringing betas.” He then recommends that conservative strategists “study” an obscure, obsessively misogynistic blog.
With women playing a more prominent role not just in electoral politics, but also political activism and punditry, issues which relate to them garner immense attention. This has left the GOP at a challenging crossroads; confronted with the decision of placating its fundamentalist Christian voting bloc or acquiescing to the demands of late-period feminists.
In such a situation, little ground is left for the voices of moderation.
Regardless of one’s views, it is undeniable that many across the country fear certain conservatives are attempting to erode women’s rights. What should conservatives do to increase their share of the female vote?
“I doubt they can do much,” John Derbyshire explains to Communities Digital News. One of America’s more notable conservative commentators for decades, Derbyshire became a virtual household name in early 2012. This is when he was fired from his longtime post at the National Review.
“Women are just like that,” Derbyshire continues. “One thing we might try would be putting some alpha males up front, instead of mealy-mouthed cringing betas. Conservative strategists should all study the Chateau Heartiste blog , though without telling anyone they are doing so.”
Earlier this week, George Washington University Law professor Jonathan Turley testified before the House Judiciary Committee at a hearing is entitled "Enforcing the President’s Constitutional Duty to Faithfully Execute the Laws." Turley has long been a critic of the expansion of executive power and it's encroachment onto the roles constitutionally designated to the other branches of government.
At the hearing, Turley testified that the encroachment of executive power has gotten worse under President Obama, which has made him a hero to Glenn Beck who explained on his radio broadcast today that something Turley said during his testimony came straight out of the Book of Isaiah, though Turley probably did not even know it.
In Turley's statement that "our system is changing in a very fundamental way, and it’s changing without a whimper of regret or opposition," Beck heard the words of Isaiah 10 in which God warns that he will pushing the nation of Assyria for the wickedness of its rulers:
And my hand hath found as a nest the riches of the people: and as one gathereth eggs that are left, have I gathered all the earth; and there was none that moved the wing, or opened the mouth, or peeped.
"Jonathan Turley," Beck said, "most likely unbeknownst to him was quoting Isaiah":
Gordon Klingenschmitt is aghast at the recent federal court rulings across the country in favor of marriage equality, telling members of his Pray In Jesus Name Project that “this is way beyond the point where it’s gotten out-of-hand.”
He calls on Congress to impeach and remove from office any judge who sides with pro-gay rights plaintiffs, since any such judge is “a domestic enemy of the Constitution.”
“These lawless judges replace Democracy with dictatorship, abrogate the U.S. Constitution, flaunt the laws of God and nature, assume jurisdiction they don’t have, and overturn the overwhelming vote of good people,” Klingenschmitt writes. “May God have mercy on these tyrants’ souls, when they are judged in eternity.
This is way beyond the point where it’s gotten out-of-hand. The lawlessness on the federal bench requires a house-cleaning. We need a new President to appoint new judges. But until that happens, we MUST pressure Congress to intervene.
Christians do not lose their right to vote simply because they are religious. These lawless judges replace Democracy with dictatorship, abrogate the U.S. Constitution, flaunt the laws of God and nature, assume jurisdiction they don’t have, and overturn the overwhelming vote of good people. May God have mercy on these tyrants’ souls, when they are judged in eternity.
There is NO mention of sexual orientation in the Constitution, and any judge who imagines one is a domestic enemy of the Constitution, and should be impeached and removed from office. We must demand Congress hold the line, and protect the traditional definition of marriage FEDERALLY, like the Oklahoma people did by state.
Last week’s Tea Party Unity conference call – after an eventful conversation between Don Feder and Rick Scarborough – featured a presentation from Neil Mammen, author of Jesus is involved in politics!: Why aren’t you? Why isn’t your church?
Mammen fielded a question from a caller who asked, “Do you think that we should insist that the next president should have strong religious beliefs to set good examples here in America?” because “Reagan, who ended the Cold War, was by using his Christian beliefs back in the ‘80s, and Obama, who is destroying America with his disbeliefs and his persecution of Christianity here in America, is doing great harm.”
“Who better to run a country than someone who loves that law, who will respect that law, who knows the Lawgiver?” Mammen responded. “So absolutely, yes. And anytime you get somebody who disdains law, doesn’t care for the law, who hates the Lawgiver and doesn’t think he deserves his sceptre, doesn’t think that the law giver knows what’s good for you, for us, then naturally you’re going to get pain, suffering, disease and death.”
Arizona Tea Party Group Defends SB 1062: 'The First Amendment Protects Only The Practice Of The Christian Faith'
2/26/14 @ 1:55pm
Bachmann: American Jews 'Sold Out Israel' To Help Obama; Bible Predicts US Will Turn Against Israel In End Times
3/4/14 @ 4:40pm
Tea Party Nation: Brewer's Veto Imposed 'Slavery,' Mandatory Penis Cakes For 'Homosexual Weddings'
2/27/14 @ 11:15am
5 Tea Party Myths Debunked As Movement Marks 5 Years Of Dysfunction
2/27/14 @ 3:00pm
Derbyshire: 'Future Of The Conservative Movement Is As A Home For White Ethnocentrism'
2/28/14 @ 4:16pm