“When fascism comes to America, it will be wrapped in the flag and carrying the cross.” – Sinclair Lewis
Seems our old friend, Speaker Gingrich, has been busy lately drafting up his plan to take the United States on the last leg of her journey to becoming a theocracy. And you thought it was the Muslims that we had to worry about? Of course, I could gather up some hubris and smugly say, “See? This is what I have been writing about all these years,” but that would be tactless.
Newt proposes, if he is elected, a “Presidential Commission on Religious Freedom.” Sounds like a good idea, and some of the wording would lead you to believe that Mr. Gingrich is genuinely concerned about the sanctity of the First Amendment and the religious freedom for all Americans. Well, he actually is concerned about the religious freedom of all Americans, except he’s got a real funny idea about what religious freedom is.
As it turns out, it means the freedom from having to deal with any religion other than Christianity. Throw in a healthy dose of Reconstructionist history and you’ve got the Newt Gingrich Plan for the Theocratization of the United States of America.
Examining His Plan…
The first page of this document actually sounds like it might be something good. It uses words like “founding fathers,” “free will,” and “individual liberty,” but by the end of the page it becomes clear that Newt is about to lambaste us with a reversal of definition with regard to religious freedom when it ends with a reference to the “pillars of religious life that generate and strengthen the social vibrancy and moral commitments of a self-governing republic.”
Of course, it is well-known that Newt has a disdain for atheists, humanists, secularists, Muslims, Buddhists, Hindus and pretty much every one else who is not Christian, and his disdain is equal for the members of our LGBT community. In fact, he has told a group of them that they should vote for Obama. But I digress…
Newt’s first foray into batshittery in this document comes on page two, where he begins his long and twisted journey down literary disingenuousness by insisting that knowing and pursuing God is, “a universal thirst written into the heart of every person.” Stopping short of calling for a complete redaction of the First Amendment, his Newtiness does make a concession that,
“A commitment to religious pluralism—or affording every individual’s religious beliefs the equal protection of the law—is not the same as saying all beliefs are equal. Tolerating a differing opinion does not make that opinion true…”
Oh, The Irony…
Newt believes that the foundations for religious freedom in America are being eroded and that the meaning of the First Amendment has been twisted to fit a post-modern world. He believes this because he has no idea what religious freedom is, and apparently has little understanding about constitutional law. This is where the revisionist historians who believe that the United States was founded as a Christian nation begin their downward spiral from reality into the depths of religious delusion.
Newt decries that, “public expressions of faith in some quarters have gone from normal to unacceptable” and refers to the cases where the hatred, bigotry and discrimination by the religious right that has been thwarted by responsible legislation is actually abuse toward the very perpetrators, making the victim the criminal and the criminal the victim. And, as if he is a five-year-old on the playground trying to impress the pig-tailed ten-year-old standing by the swings, Newt makes sure to shove his nose even further up the asses of the religious right by perpetrating his revisionism by stating,
“year after year, our courts are filled with hundreds of cases based upon the anti-religious misconceptions of the First Amendment, which are then reinforced by judges determined to impose their own views on other citizens.”
I should hope that I do not have to explain the utter tomfoolery of this statement to my audience. The Christian arrogance alone that has begun to ooze from this document is like roofing tar. Throw in a reference to abortion with “the value of every human life” and the required homophobia, as in “marriage as between one man and one woman,” and by the time you get to page two of this document you’ve got a fine outline for a Presidential Proclamation for an American Theocracy.
A Dose of Exceptionalism and Profit…
Of course, old Newt has to have something in this for himself, so he has made sure to include a provision that will “offer a set of materials, including excerpts from Newt Gingrich’s book… to provide guidance and context for the commission.” Pope Gingrich – has a nice ring to it, don’t you think?
Of course, you can’t go to long without a reinforcement of revisionist history and the assertion (by force, if necessary) of American (US) ideals upon the rest of the planet, like it or not. Newt is very proud of his delusional belief that the Founding Fathers meant to have religion as an integral part of public life, even though actual historical documents belie this. He is even prouder of his belief that the American (Republican) way of life has “been a powerful force for good at home and throughout the world.” That is, unless you have brown skin, are poor, homeless, sick, old or, well.. not American.
The Devil in the Details…
Now we get to the meat of Newts proposal for Fascism in the “Mission” statement. This is where it gets really interesting, as Newt seems to intermingle his version of the Declaration of Independence with the United States Constitution, which actually is pretty common for the religious right. Comprehension has never been their strongest ability. Thus:
“The mission of the religious freedom commission will be to advise the president on issues that threaten or impede the religious freedom that all Americans enjoy as an unalienable right from our Creator, which the First Amendment to the Constitution explicitly protects. In examining and investigating threats or impediments to religious freedom, the religious freedom commission should examine and investigate.”
Right off the bat, Newt sneaks in the word “our” in reference to God. Those who are actually familiar with the Declaration of Independence know that the line that refers to a creator uses the word “their,” not “the creator” or “our creator,” but “their creator,” as referenced here:
“We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable rights…”
This means whatever the individual American Citizen believes their creator to be. This can be God, Allah, Vishnu, a Master Jedi or, as in my case, my Parents. Yes, my parents, and if anyone (Christians) have a problem with my inalienable rights coming from my parents, please see the part of the Constitution that refers to individuals born on American soil or of American citizens.
Twisted Sister Christian…
By now, the reasoned person can see that Newt is fully immersed in his revisionist delusion, as evidenced by his belief that the steps forward we have made as a nation toward equality within our educational system are, in actuality, discriminatory toward real Americans (Christians). He throws the civil and human rights of all non-Christians out the constitutional window by stating:
“The extent to which schools from primary to university level are discriminating against religious viewpoints, restricting religious expression, or forcing students to violate their conscience by forcibly imposing beliefs about sexual orientation, gender, same-sex “marriage” and abortion, to which students have constitutionally protected religious objections.”
Remaining true to the Republican platform, this document would not be complete without the obligatory GOP discrimination toward women, homosexuals, the poor, the sick and the elderly. In fact, Newt does pretty well covering all of these undesirables in one run-on sentence:
“The extent to which religious freedom is threatened by new policies and regulations of the Department of Health and Human Services regarding the delivery of health and healthcare services in the United States, including for example, any new HHS mandate that would require health-insurance plans to cover contraception, sterilization and drugs known to induce abortion that may violate and interfere with the religious freedom of individuals, and the weakening of conscience clause protections for healthcare workers.”
I’ve left off the last sentence of the above point because it requires redress on its own. When Newt says,
“How U.S. national interests (social, economic, and security) could be supported by promoting greater religious freedom abroad, and conversely, how U.S. national interests have been hindered by a lack of religious freedom abroad.”
Newt really means is,
“We are the United States, a very Christian Nation, blessed by the very hand of God, Himself and we are seeking out new and delightful ways of making the United States even more of a very Christian Nation by exploring ways to rape our citizens of the freedoms that our Constitution guarantees, even if it means making up new definitions because there just is not enough God and Jesus here. As well, we don’t think there is enough God and Jesus in the rest of the world, especially those barbaric countries that don’t believe in God and Jesus, so we are going to explore new and delightful ways of bringing God and Jesus to these countries which may or may not include the use of bombs”
Newts fifth point in the mission statement calls for the continuation of the “ministerial exception” doctrine, which is a complicated precedent that addresses employment law with regard to religious institutions, but has, as of late, been used in attempts to discriminate against US citizens in other, non-religious institutions that are either run or owned by ministers, ministries or actual churches. I am not going to expound on this further, as I am working on a story on this issue on its own.
Needless to say, Newt would like this doctrine to apply to an even broader spectrum, as he believes the church should be given more authority in matters of the state, as evidenced by point 6:
“The extent to which individuals have been harassed or threatened for exercising key civil rights to organize, to speak, to donate or to vote for marriage and to propose new protections, if needed”
Wait! It gets better…!
Again, in true Republican form, Newts hatred for the LGBT community is reinforced with even more sanctions being put in place against them, evidenced by the next couple of points. It is obvious that points 7 and 8 seek a repeal of the repeal of DADT, a reinstatement of DOMA, a reversal of the work that various military civil rights organizations such as the MAAF have managed to accomplish and a general denial of the rights and freedoms guaranteed under the Civil Rights Act. I’ll just leave this here:
7. The extent to which the protection of religious expression and religious freedom for military chaplains and other service members who support the historical, religious definition of marriage as one man and one woman may be threatened by new laws regarding conduct in the military.
8. The impact on religious freedom of same-sex “marriage” and non-discrimination laws,including the rights of individuals, businesses and religious institutions that have a conscientious objection to providing or engaging in services that support values they oppose
The remaining points in the “mission statement” revolve around removing protections that would allow private enterprises to freely discriminate. Pharmacies would be free to refuse to fill prescriptions, hospitals would be free to refuse to treat the sick or injured, etc. As well, it would make Federal monies available for religious educational institutions and allow the blatant inclusion of theological arguments to influence legislation of health care and social welfare programs, as evidenced here:
9. The extent to which professional accrediting agencies are adopting standards that force those that seek to enter their professions to violate their conscience and the role of the federal government in recognizing and regulating these agencies.
10. The extent to which the federal government is discriminating against private religious educational institutions through policies related to federal student loans or new rules on health care.
11. The extent to which states are restricting religious institutions from competing for state funding for educational and other social programs.
Point twelve is ubiquitous at best, and could be used to determine what action, if any, may be used to justify more bombings of brown people abroad help God protect the rights and privileges he has blessed white people in wealthy nations with…
12. The extent to which U.S. policies may be hindering religious freedom abroad,including through the funding of civil society groups that lobby for legislation that run counter to religious freedom in other countries
The Gingbang Principles Of Batshittery…
As I had pointed out earlier, Christians just love to quote the Declaration of Independence, as if it has anything to do with our Constitution or how the country is supposed to be run. This is expected, because the DOI makes a few spiritual references, whereas our Constitution is a secular document, which makes sense, as the United States is a secular nation, founded as such. Newt believes that the Declaration of Independence,
“is, and must be, the starting-point for any examination of the place of religion freedom in American public life. It is simply impossible to understand the United States without first understanding the Declaration. The Declaration is the mainstay of our civic life; it is our rock, it is our anchor.”
This, of course, is patently untrue… We are not governed by the DOI….
The document then goes on to talk about God writing things on all humanity with his own hand with sun beams and how his edicts cannot be changed, erased or obscured by mere mortals and how our rights are God-given and cannot be eradicated except, of course, if you happen to live in a country that has another god(s) at the helm. In that case, you’re pretty much fucked and can look forward to long and arduous occupation by the United States Armed Services, which is also provided for in this document, which states,
“any government that tries to annul these rights will cease to be legitimate.”
Pretty handy, eh?
Our Religious Vision…
The final congealed suckage of this document revolves around a religious vision, where Newt & Co. reel it back in a little with talk about how slavery, fascism and communism are evil and that it was God who guided our nation in eradicating these scourges from public life. Of course, he neglects to point out that it was the church and religious community that put up the most resistance to the abolition of slavery, as the bible supports the ownership of another human being. Besides, everyone knows that those pesky Negroes are the cursed race from Genesis. As far as fascism and communism goes, well, that is a joke right there, as evidenced by Joe McCarthy’s paranoia that resulted in having “In God We Trust” as our national motto…
Newt goes on to quote-mine a couple of the Founding Fathers and a few of his other favorite politicians of old with what we have come to expect from revisionists and the document continues on for several more pages, of which you can read on your own for your amusement. Suffice to say, the remainder of this document is based on Newts “Six Themes Summarize The Founders’ Vision For Church And State,” which take three legitimate political points of view (Federalist, Nationalist and Democratic), add in two questionable ones (Libertarian and Philosophical) and top it of with a totally illegitimate point of view (Theological).
Stupid Is As Stupid Does…
What follows can only be described as the words of a madman, totally convinced of his own superiority and completely delusional with respect to his interpretation of how myths, legends and fairy tales should be integrated into politics, legislation and jurisprudence. In short, your typical fundamental Christian. The last point, “Theological,” states,
“Finally, the Founders believed that religion belongs in public life quite simply because they believed in the tenets of the Declaration of Independence. If the Declaration is true, then there is a religious vision at the center of American political life. And there can be no doubt that the Founders believed the Declaration to be true; after all, they staked their lives upon it: “with a firm reliance on the protection of divine Providence, we mutually pledge to each other our Lives, our Fortunes and our sacred Honor.”
Some Final Thoughts…
I have a book coming out next year called “The Regiment.” No, this is not a plug for the book, so stay with me here for a minute. My story takes place about fifty years into the future, and in a nutshell, the United States had been transformed into a Theocracy somewhere around 2020 and the Constitution was replaced with a condensed version of the New American Standard Bible. Atheists and non-Christians were driven underground and a ragtag group of revolutionaries known as “The Regiment” (led by a woman named Dehlia who was the first person to be born underground), who were making plans to take the country back from the Christian Fascists and restoring it to a beacon of reason, equality and freedom.
Using my literary license as a writer and author, I created a “document” that was used in the story by the Christofascists to justify the eradication of our Constitution and its replacement with Scripture. You cannot imagine just how close it is to the one that was put out by His Newtness, such as that when you read the book some of you might be quick to accuse me of plagiarism.
It is for this reason that I am glad Gingrich doesn’t stand a snowball’s chance on an August day in Key West of getting elected. But it behooves me that what Newt has put forth as his intention if elected is also shared by the rest of the batshit crazy GOP Presidential candidates, including Ron Paul and that other Mormon, John Huntsman.
We must be vigilant, my fellow heathens, and not be so flippant about calling the Theocratization of the United States a conspiracy theory. Newt, as a Presidential Candidate, proved this by putting in writing what the fundamentalists have been shouting from their pews and pulpits for years.
Watch your backs, my friends…