Wednesday, August 01, 2018

Jeff’s Gilead dreams

Yesterday, the current regime took its biggest and boldest move yet to end religious freedom in the USA. Their ultimate goal is to transform the USA into a theonomy, a real-life version of the Republic of Gilead. They are only one or two elections from achieving their ultimate goal.

Yesterday Jeff Sessions, who for now is serving as Attorney General, announced a “Religious Liberty Task Force” which will focus the efforts of the Department of Justice to promote extremist Christianity. In his prepared remarks [to access them from the Department’s website, copy this address and paste in your browser: https://bit.ly/2KeMuDM], he brought up non-Christians a couple of times in order to deflect from the Christian-only focus of his efforts.

This has its origins back in the Executive Order issued by the current occupant of the White House, which, as Jeff put it, included “the principle that free exercise means a right to act—or to abstain from action,” which is veiled, though clear, reference to “Christians” demanding the right to discriminate against LGBT+ people. He went on say it included “the principle that government shouldn’t impugn people’s motives or beliefs,” which is very clever way of trying to deflect criticism of religious chauvinists, to restrict government officials to always and unquestioningly defending extremist Christians.

In his prepared remarks, Jeff declared:
A dangerous movement, undetected by many, is now challenging and eroding our great tradition of religious freedom. There can be no doubt. This is no little matter. It must be confronted and defeated.
Those are clearly fighting words, indicating a clear in tent to be aggressive in attacking diversity of belief. They can do this, he said, because the 2016 election “and much that has flowed from it, gives us a rare opportunity to arrest these trends.”

His remarks included all sorts of absurd claims, such as:
We have gotten to the point where courts have held that morality cannot be a basis for law; where ministers are fearful to affirm, as they understand it, holy writ from the pulpit; and where one group can actively target religious groups by labeling them a [sic] “hate group” on the basis of their sincerely held religious beliefs.
Utter nonsense—every single word of it. Any preacher who claims to be “fearful” of preaching whatever the hell they want is either lying for political reasons, or utterly delusional. Also, Jeff doesn’t get to tell “one group” [hm, who could he POSSIBLY be referring to?!] who they can call what. That same First Amendment means government cannot proscribe speech, so if “one group” wants to “actively target” religious groups by labelling them “hate groups” on the basis of their supposedly sincerely held religious beliefs, tough. Get over it. If the “religious group” is really so delicate that it will wilt when labelled a name they don’t like, then they have far bigger problems than the fact they have opponents among “one group”. It’s always amazing to see what snowflakes far rightwingers are.

Not done spinning utter nonsense and partisan bovine excrement, he said:
But in recent years, the cultural climate in this country—and in the West more generally—has become less hospitable to people of faith. Many Americans have felt that their freedom to practice their faith has been under attack.
And it’s easy to see why… We’ve all seen the ordeal faced so bravely by [the “Christian” baker in the recent Supreme Court non-decision decision].
Bingo! Everyone playing at home, he finally got a clear and unequivocal anti-LGBT+ attack into his remarks. His nonsense goes on:
We don’t give up our rights when we go to work, start a business, talk about politics, or interact with the government.
Well, no shit, Sherlock—but it’s a lie that people have to “give up” their rights: What they are forbidden to do is impose their beliefs onto other people. Nevertheless, Jeff declared his war against imaginary enemies:
And this Department of Justice is going to court across America to defend the rights of people of faith.
Because he thinks that religious people aren’t privileged enough in society already. And, he, clearly thinks, “one group” is the main enemy, because he mentioned one specific thing a second time:
And, of course, we were proud to file a brief in support of [the “Christian” baker in the recent Supreme Court non-decision decision].
To make sure that everyone understands how extensive this new war on freedom of conscience will be, he declared of the Department of “Justice” directives:
…That includes making sure that our employees know their duties to accommodate people of faith.
“Accommodate people of faith” means advancing them ahead of all others. By giving extremist Christianity a privileged position, with the power to veto anything and everything with which they disagree, they will advance the regime's goal of transforming the USA to a repressive authoritarian religious regime. By starting small, they can keep taking away freedom until it's gone with no one even noticing until it's too late—the Boiling Frog Syndrome.

Bet they don’t have frogs in Gilead.


“Jeff Sessions' 'religious liberty task force' part of a dangerous Christian nationalist campaign of discrimination” By Christian minister Jonathan Wilson-Hartgrove, NBC News, “Think”

"Jeff Sessions announces a religious liberty task force to combat 'dangerous' secularism" By Tara Isabella Burton, Vox

1 comment:

rogerogreen said...

Actually, my working theory is that this regime operates on Opposites Day constantly. "A dangerous movement, undetected by many, is now challenging and eroding our great tradition of religious freedom." That is true, but it's happening with the would-be theocracy stuffing its religionist crap down our throats. They are not the victims, they are the perps