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Stewart writes: "Good News Clubs' evangelism in schools is already subverting church-state separation. Now they justify murdering nonbelievers."

The story of Saul and the Amalekites has been used to justify genocide throughout the ages. (photo: Martin Godwin/Guardian UK)
The story of Saul and the Amalekites has been used to justify genocide throughout the ages. (photo: Martin Godwin/Guardian UK)



How Christian Fundamentalists Plan to Teach Genocide to Schoolchildren

By Katherine Stewart, Guardian UK

02 June 12

 

ood News Clubs' evangelism in schools is already subverting church-state separation. Now they justify murdering nonbelievers.

The Bible has thousands of passages that may serve as the basis for instruction and inspiration. Not all of them are appropriate in all circumstances.

The story of Saul and the Amalekites is a case in point. It's not a pretty story, and it is often used by people who don't intend to do pretty things. In the book of 1 Samuel (15:3), God said to Saul:

"Now go, attack the Amalekites, and totally destroy all that belongs to them. Do not spare them; put to death men and women, children and infants, cattle and sheep, camels and donkeys."

Saul dutifully exterminated the women, the children, the babies and all of the men - but then he spared the king. He also saved some of the tastier looking calves and lambs. God was furious with him for his failure to finish the job.

The story of the Amalekites has been used to justify genocide throughout the ages. According to Pennsylvania State University Professor Philip Jenkins, a contributing editor for the American Conservative, the Puritans used this passage when they wanted to get rid of the Native American tribes. Catholics used it against Protestants, Protestants against Catholics. "In Rwanda in 1994, Hutu preachers invoked King Saul's memory to justify the total slaughter of their Tutsi neighbors," writes Jenkins in his 2011 book, Laying Down the Sword: Why We Can't Ignore the Bible's Violent Verses (HarperCollins).

This fall, more than 100,000 American public school children, ranging in age from four to 12, are scheduled to receive instruction in the lessons of Saul and the Amalekites in the comfort of their own public school classrooms. The instruction, which features in the second week of a weekly "Bible study" course, will come from the Good News Club, an after-school program sponsored by a group called the Child Evangelism Fellowship (CEF). The aim of the CEF is to convert young children to a fundamentalist form of the Christian faith and recruit their peers to the club.

There are now over 3,200 clubs in public elementary schools, up more than sevenfold since the 2001 supreme court decision, Good News Club v Milford Central School, effectively required schools to include such clubs in their after-school programing.

The CEF has been teaching the story of the Amalekites at least since 1973. In its earlier curriculum materials, CEF was euphemistic about the bloodshed, saying simply that "the Amalekites were completely defeated." In the most recent version of the curriculum, however, the group is quite eager to drive the message home to its elementary school students. The first thing the curriculum makes clear is that if God gives instructions to kill a group of people, you must kill every last one:

"You are to go and completely destroy the Amalekites (AM-uh-leck-ites) - people, animals, every living thing. Nothing shall be left."

"That was pretty clear, wasn't it?" the manual tells the teachers to say to the kids.

Even more important, the Good News Club wants the children to know, the Amalakites were targeted for destruction on account of their religion, or lack of it. The instruction manual reads:

"The Amalekites had heard about Israel's true and living God many years before, but they refused to believe in him. The Amalekites refused to believe in God and God had promised punishment."

The instruction manual goes on to champion obedience in all things. In fact, pretty much every lesson that the Good News Club gives involves reminding children that they must, at all costs, obey. If God tells you to kill nonbelievers, he really wants you to kill them all. No questions asked, no exceptions allowed.

Asking if Saul would "pass the test" of obedience, the text points to Saul's failure to annihilate every last Amalekite, posing the rhetorical question:

"If you are asked to do something, how much of it do you need to do before you can say, 'I did it!'?"

"If only Saul had been willing to seek God for strength to obey!" the lesson concludes.

A review question in the textbook seeks to drive the point home further:

"How did King Saul only partly obey God when he attacked the Amalekites? (He did not completely destroy as God had commanded, he kept the king and some of the animals alive.)"

The CEF and the legal advocacy groups that have been responsible for its tremendous success over the past ten years are determined to "Knock down all doors, all the barriers, to all 65,000 public elementary schools in America and take the Gospel to this open mission field now! Not later, now!" in the words of a keynote speaker at the CEF's national convention in 2010. The CEF wants to operate in the public schools, rather than in churches, because they know that young children associate the public schools with authority and are unable to distinguish between activities that take place in a school and those that are sponsored by the school.

In the majority opinion that opened the door to Good News Clubs, supreme court Justice Clarence Thomas reasoned that the activities of the CEF were not really religious, after all. He said that they could be characterized, for legal purposes, "as the teaching of morals and character development from a particular viewpoint".

As Justices Souter and Stevens pointed out in their dissents, however, the claim is preposterous: the CEF plainly aims to teach religious doctrines and conduct services of worship. Thomas's claim is particularly ironic in view of the fact that the CEF makes quite clear its intent to teach that no amount of moral or ethical behavior (pdf) can spare a nonbeliever from an eternity in hell.

Good News Clubs should not be in America's public elementary schools. As I explain in my book, The Good News Club: The Christian Right's Stealth Assault on America's Children, the club exists mainly to give small children the false impression that their public school supports a particular creed. The clubs' presence has produced a paradoxical entanglement of church and state that has ripped apart communities, degraded public education, and undermined religious freedom.

The CEF's new emphasis on the genocide of nonbelievers makes a bad situation worse. Exterminist rhetoric has been on the rise among some segments of the far right, including some religious groups. At what point do we start taking talk of genocide seriously? How would we feel about a nonreligious group that instructs its students that if they should ever receive an order to commit genocide, they should fulfill it to the letter?

And finally, when does a religious group qualify as a "hate group"?

 

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+65 # RMDC 2012-06-02 13:10
I think this is a real problem for those who invoke Judeo-Christian values, morality, etc. There is a little that is to be admired in the life of Jesus, but the bulk of the old and new testaments are pretty much dominated by a vicious and vengeful god who authorizes terrible acts.

The whole idea of the apocalypse when all believers will be raptured into heaven and all the non-belivers like me will plunge into hell is just absurd. If that were the case, I would prefer hell than to spend eternity in heaven with the fundamentalist christians and jews spewing their hatred and condemnations at everyone.

I'm just afraid that it is going to get much worse before it gets any better. Extremist Christians and Jews are on the march. They have control of the world largest militaries and most lethal weapons and they are killing their enemies. Maybe Huntington was right -- we are in the clash of civilizations and in the next century only one side will still be surviving. I sure as hell hope it is not the Christian/Jewis h side. I hope their hatred for everyone else turns back and destroys them.
 
 
+19 # Gevurah 2012-06-03 00:47
You're very confused, mixing Christian killer extremists with the small party of ultra-Orthodox in Israel.

The latter are well under control of the government, which is revoking their privileges to study while others are dying in defense of their country against attacks from neighboring Arab killers.

So take a deep breath and study up on Fundamentalist Christians, who really ARE trying to take over the U.S. government, partly by corrupting the children from a young age.

Do you know the Fundamentalists are also corrupting the military, starting with the Service Academies, especially the Air Force.

They send extremist Christian propaganda into Iraq and Afghanistan via Fundamentalist NCOs and officers. That only helps get more American troops killed by outraged Muslims. I am no fan of Islam, but how would you like it if a lot of Fundamentalist Muslims invaded the U.S. and spread their propaganda around?

Check out Military Religious Freedom Foundation which is working to get these Christian extremists OUT of the military. YOU WILL BE SHOCKED!
 
 
+7 # smilodon1 2012-06-04 07:20
I'm a member of MRFF and donate as I can afford. I was thoroughly shocked when I found out what was going on in the military.
 
 
+47 # Ralph Averill 2012-06-03 02:25
"There is a little that is to be admired in the life of Jesus..."
I think if Jesus came back to life today he would tell the evangelicals and all the other bible-bangers to get his name out of what they're doing because it has nothing to do with what he talked about.
 
 
+20 # solange 2012-06-03 10:56
and if they're so christian, why are they quoting the old testament?
 
 
+11 # Elusive Pimpernel 2012-06-03 17:00
solange..... forgive this ignorant Jew, but don't all Christians base their Christian roots on the Old Testament?

I've been to a several church services, and there seems to be quite a bit of referencing of the Old Testament from the pulpit.
 
 
+19 # solange 2012-06-03 18:02
yes, but jesus was supposed to bring a new revelation. his message was peace and love.

...and i'm not a christian.
 
 
+15 # midtwnscott 2012-06-03 18:35
Pimpernel,
Part of it is the Puritans. Read John Edwards, "Sinners in the Hands of an Angry God." It's all about fire and brimstone and wrath. I grew up with them and it is really still an enigma. Jesus taught love and tolerance and modern christianity can't seem to understand the concept of a loving creator, only a vengeful one. When they do talk of love, it's always tied to some kind of retribution. Love thy neighbor… is not part of the lexicon of the fundamentalist movement. If you don't believe exactly like them, you're the enemy.
 
 
-7 # ardvaark 2012-06-05 09:03
One answer is that the Jehovah of the Old Testament is the very same Jesus Christ who came to earth to work out his atonement for all of us. He is a God and has his own work to do. We are fortunate of we understand a particle of it. Even better, if we can work together with Him on this salvation. We are family in this, not enemies. Everyone has a shot at redemption. Stop the contention!
 
 
+13 # KittatinyHawk 2012-06-03 14:50
Jesus is the best part of the diary made up by man. God never told anybody anything. God would never after telling us not to kill, say go kill. These people are Satanists not anything to do with Faith
 
 
+3 # Elusive Pimpernel 2012-06-03 17:09
Quoting KittatinyHawk:
These people are Satanists not anything to do with Faith


If you take time to read up on those who are in the New World Order, including the Freemasons, you will find that at the core of their beliefs, Satan dwells. Satanic worship is now part of the music culture in overt and subtle form.

The Bohemian Club in California, a place where many dignitaries including royalty have been known to frequent, is where Satanic worship is exercised regularly.

If you read books on MK Ultra, mind control used by the CIA on unknowing citizens, the common thread used to frighten people was by making them watch Satanic worship and sacrifice of children and animals.

Satanic worship is slowly making its way into day to day part of life in America, and I don't believe its by accident that now religious fundamentalists are allowed to bring a brand of hate and encourage killing into our children's classrooms. Key word here is "allowed".

It is not simply a case of corrupting children's minds, it is to create a whole society of children who will become adults who accept that killing is ok.
 
 
0 # The Voice of Reason 2012-06-03 20:51
"For the break of the morn of Divine guidance must needs follow the darkness of the night of error." --Baha'u'llah
 
 
+5 # ericlipps 2012-06-04 11:25
Quoting Elusive Pimpernel:
Quoting KittatinyHawk:
These people are Satanists not anything to do with Faith

. . .

The Bohemian Club in California, a place where many dignitaries including royalty have been known to frequent, is where Satanic worship is exercised regularly.

If you read books on MK Ultra, mind control used by the CIA on unknowing citizens, the common thread used to frighten people was by making them watch Satanic worship and sacrifice of children and animals.

Satanic worship is slowly making its way into day to day part of life in America, and I don't believe its by accident that now religious fundamentalists are allowed to bring a brand of hate and encourage killing into our children's classrooms. Key word here is "allowed".

It is not simply a case of corrupting children's minds, it is to create a whole society of children who will become adults who accept that killing is ok.


Ahem.

First, it's "Bohemian Grove," not "Bohemian Club." And second, your concern about "Satanic worship" sounds pretty much like what Christian fundamentalists go on about.

I don't know what books you're reading, but if they're telling you that "Satanic worship is slowly making its way into day to day part of life in America," I'd bet they're being written by the very people you're concerned about.
 
 
+7 # The Voice of Reason 2012-06-03 20:50
... actually, 'the Promised Christ' appeared in 1844 when Siyyid Ali Muhammad, a young merchant from Shiraz in Iran, declared to His first believer that He was 'the Bab', the Gate (to God). He brought new teachings that fulfilled the ancient scriptures and transformed the souls of His followers with his kind and loving counsels.

The Iranian authorities and religious leaders promptly arrested the Bab, and in 1850 they executed Him with a firing squad of 750 soldiers. Twice. Like Jesus, the Bab was suspended in the air by a nail and murdered by a brutal dictatorship.

And also like Jesus, His teachings survived to change many a Middle Easterner into a kind soul who has renounced violence and believes in the equality of women and men. Can you imagine how they continue to suffer in Iran and other ME Islamic republics today?
 
 
+1 # ardvaark 2012-06-05 08:54
Amen.
 
 
+36 # John Locke 2012-06-03 05:53
Books that promote killing and torture such as stoning to death, have no place in a civilized society. These "fundamentalist " are generally insane....peopl e who follow the bible literally and even its violent principle should be classified as terrorists and prosecuted,

Religion has No right to preach Violence. And the first Amendment can not be used to justify terrorism. These fanatics are as dangerous as is our government, sadly they have infiltrated much of it...
 
 
+5 # KittatinyHawk 2012-06-03 14:54
Religion in Old Testament is terrorism but the New Testament sheds a different light on what God expected of us, same with Eastern Religions and American Indian Culture.
I would wonder that these Satanists would not want to teach hatred as it could be used against them. The Bible and History proves that.

I was born of my parents and reborn in my Faith. I have since learned so much from other Faiths not necessarily any white ones that I have been reborn. I will not testify to a God who believes in Killing. My God, Creator of all Living Things supposedly wrote in stone...Thou Shalt Not Kill. No Amendments, no by law...plain and simple.
 
 
+12 # Gevurah 2012-06-03 19:15
This is absolutely hilarous! Poor KittatinyHawk has zip knowledge of history. From Nicea onward, after the men took over the young Christian church, Christians have never stopped killing each other over "major" doctrinal points like how many angels can dance on the head of a pin. Anybody ever seen the film "Queen Margot" about the religious wars between Catholics and Protestants? You need a strong stomach.

Not content with killing each other, the Christians killed "pagans" in every part of the world where the locals didn't seem interested in converting to the new belief system which the missionaries imposed -- along with smallpox, syphilis, and other Christian goodies.

Unbelievable arrogance and hypocrisy. And that was hundreds of years BEFORE the current wave of priest abuse of children.

And before the Pope kissed the *** of the Nazis, who then felt free to launch the Final Solution. Had the Pope said:
You will stop this Jew persecution NOW or I will excommunicate every one of you...had he said that, the Holocaust might well have been prevented. Instead, he signed the Concordat, and the Jews, and labor unionists, and Protestants and homosexuals, and anybody else Hitler took a dislike to. So -- off to the slave labor camps for those who had the strength to work until they dropped. The twelve million others, of whom six million Jews ,including one and a half million CHILDREN UNDER TWELVE, went to the ovens.
 
 
-1 # JJS 2012-06-05 16:04
What about the statement in the new testament Matthew 10:34

New International Version (©1984)
"Do not suppose that I have come to bring peace to the earth. I did not come to bring peace, but a sword."
Hmmm?
 
 
+20 # mdhome 2012-06-03 06:31
I agree that "heaven" has never been described as a place I would want to be. the fundies are a bunch of psychopaths.
 
 
+17 # rayb-baby 2012-06-03 08:10
RMDC - Having grown up Jewish, but being totally non-religious today, I still have to say that you are being totally disingenuous putting Jews and Christians in the same boat. Just a few points! The vast majority view the Old Testament as a book of stories and parables from which they learn how to live and not live their lives. NO Jew proselytizes, or tries to change anyone else's beliefs. They do not read the New Testament, therefore do not believe in Relevation and the apocalypse. For the most part, they just want to be left alone, but never have been, so they're not going to take it anymore.
That being said, I agree that the world would be better off if we didn't have any religion and the primitive beliefs that encompass them.
 
 
+14 # gzuckier 2012-06-03 11:57
The difference being that fundamentalist Jews see the Old Testament as granting them exclusive control of Israel, fundamentalist Christians see the OT as giving them exclusive control of the universe.
 
 
+51 # kelly 2012-06-02 13:14
What group has not used religion at one time or another to qualify its particular brand of hate?
 
 
+14 # KittatinyHawk 2012-06-03 14:59
I do not believe that Buddhism has taught hate. I do not believe the Faith of the American Indian taught hate but healing..so I would not generalize on that.

White Culture seems to bring the hate with them. Jewish Bible a story book, much written in love, lot of anger issues, lots of envy in fact it is testament to all the sins. They have blasphemed their own faith by Killing, taking from their neighbors, having false gods, so where is the Pillar of any Faith built on the lies and hatred.
That Eastern Faiths, American Indian actually make us look like what we are...Insane.
Creator created all things. Loved all things equally so who actually gave anyone any rights to Kill?
 
 
+11 # Bill Clements 2012-06-03 16:26
I would concur with KittanyHawk re: her comment on Buddhism. I have been a Buddhist now for 36 years and I can say that I've never encountered a teaching that promotes or condones hating others. On the contrary!
 
 
-12 # Richard1908 2012-06-03 23:11
Haven't seen you volunteer that information with regard to your comments on Tibet.
 
 
+11 # Bill Clements 2012-06-04 07:46
What we choose to share or not share is a personal decision, isn't it? Why am I not surprised by the implication of your comment?
 
 
-5 # Richard1908 2012-06-04 22:15
There you go again, Bill. Tell me, what do you suppose the implication of my comment is? I'd tell you, but what we choose to share or not share is a personal decision, isn't it?
 
 
+2 # Bill Clements 2012-06-05 07:12
Richard Wright (1908-1960): "There you go again..." Are you channeling Ronald Reagan?

The less I know, the better.
 
 
-2 # Richard1908 2012-06-05 14:49
And there you go again, Bill. You seem unable to attribute any original thought to others. What would I know or care about Reagan? Did he say that? Would I know or care? All you ever do is obfuscate to slip off the hook. Oops, I think someone might have said that before.
 
 
+12 # Bill Clements 2012-06-03 16:31
I love that one of the Dalai Lama's recent books is titled Beyond Religion: Ethics for a Whole World. He makes a convincing case for finding another way than following a religious path.

http://www.amazon.com/Beyond-Religion-Ethics-Whole-World/dp/0547636350/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1338769799&sr=8-1
 
 
-1 # JJS 2012-06-05 16:02
There are definitely tribes in North America that were peaceful and "healing". However, there was a lot of inter-tribal war for resources. Was it hate? Maybe, or just survivial. The end result was American Indians were fighting tribe against tribe for centuries before the White man crossed the Atlantic. Don't gloss over human history for your own purposes.
 
 
+109 # Peacedragon 2012-06-02 14:42
This group should not be allowed anywhere near a public school.
 
 
+24 # sapereaudeprime 2012-06-03 03:24
This group should not be allowed anywhere outside of a prison wall.
 
 
+18 # Dave_s Not Here 2012-06-03 12:46
Hey, give the prisoners a break. This shouldn't be inflicted on them either.
 
 
+6 # gzuckier 2012-06-03 12:00
I strongly disagree. They are a perfect example of a pathological worldview to be studied
 
 
+73 # KrazyFromPolitics 2012-06-02 15:38
The fundamentalists of any religion have had such a perverse effect on the moral and ethical development of young people. It's a wonder how anyone emerges with any sense of a moral direction, empathy, and cultural awareness.
 
 
+58 # Rick Levy 2012-06-02 17:47
"The CEF and the legal advocacy groups that have been responsible for its tremendous success over the past ten years are determined to "Knock down all doors, all the barriers, to all 65,000 public elementary schools in America and take the Gospel to this open mission field now! Not later, now!""

The ugliness of Good News Club's teachings is matched only by their wild-eyed fanaticism.

And the irony of the organization's name "Good News Club" is staggering.
 
 
+64 # CandH 2012-06-02 19:31
Well, shockingly, that explains the existence of insane-christof asicst-Blackwat er, and much of the other "programs" that keep popping up in military/law enforcement classrooms all over the Western hemisphere. Thomas, whose blatant conflicts of interest and ethical violations read like a who's-who at the Chamber of Commerce, needs to be impeached...yes terday!
 
 
+34 # Sophie 2012-06-02 22:33
Scalia also supported the 2001 Milford decision, which is not surprising. It was the beginning of the end for freedom from religion as well as the separation of church and state. And, so it continues.

Stewart's Good News Club is a must read-
 
 
+23 # sapereaudeprime 2012-06-03 03:27
Thomas is a poster-boy for Uncle Tom, while Scalia is nothing but a papist cowbird who has hatched ten eggs in the nest my ancestors built with their sweat and blood. I'd like to see both of them tried for treason and either publicly hanged or put away in solitary confinement for life.
 
 
+12 # Gevurah 2012-06-03 08:10
I love it! Very few know that Scalia put nine (I think? not ten?) children into his Catholic wife. Most have followed in their father's footsteps. Here's one prominent example. Google the bellw-cited blog article in full.
The Labor Dept son operated to OPPOSE workers'rights ...surprise!

Scalia’s son’s firm represents Wal-Mart ... on behalf of women who have worked ... Bush later appointed Eugene Scalia as a top lawyer in the Labor Department, a ...


*****blog.sfgate.com/nov05election/2011/04/02/scalias-sons... *****
 
 
+13 # Dave_s Not Here 2012-06-03 12:50
Thomas, particularly, is a swirling cesspool of corruption.
 
 
+8 # Gevurah 2012-06-03 00:52
CamdH: From your mouth to Her ear!

Well said!
 
 
+28 # The Voice of Reason 2012-06-02 20:00
This same message is taught in Middle East republics. It is always only a matter of time before the corrosion of religious teachings turns on each other.

We need a new religion that teaches that we belong to only one race, worship only one God, and God is known by the names of His Messengers.

But religious leaders love their power more than they love their God. They are the harshest opposers whenever a new Messenger is sent, and the last ones to believe in Him. This is the path that leads to the downfall of society.

And that's the good news.
 
 
+58 # Sophie 2012-06-02 22:36
"We need a new religion that teaches that we belong to only one race, worship only one God, and God is known by the names of His Messengers."

We do not need a "new religion,"-- we need freedom from religious coercion, and respect for all faiths or no faith at all.
 
 
-12 # The Voice of Reason 2012-06-03 20:11
If religion came from people, then what you assert might be true. But religion is handed down from a higher power, the one that is capable of creating the universe.

When people see leadership as their goal, especially in religion, then the arena has been corrupted beyond repair. When God sends a new Messenger, those who are strong and faithful recognize the truth of the Messenger's teachings and willingly seek to improve the human condition. Today, their goal can only be attained through cooperation and mutual agreement.

Those who seek power reject Him and distract others in order to maintain their authority. These are the trouble makers. And when they come in the name of religion they are Satan worshipers.
 
 
+11 # Skeptical1247 2012-06-04 05:54
The Voice of Reason? What part does "reason" play in that statement? It is pure delusion (faith), not reason, to say "IF religion came from people,..." Of course, "religion" comes from people. If God created "religion" why would She create so damn many versions, with people ready to kill each other over minor variations in dogma?

Does God need to be entertained by watching people kill each other, after creating the universe? I don't think so. If God created us, She also created "Free Will" or choice. That some people (religious types) are committed to interfering with the free will of others is a cosmic joke. There is nothing reasonable about it.
 
 
-8 # The Voice of Reason 2012-06-04 10:12
People are in need of guidance from a higher source, or else we would just act like the animals.

God is forgiving, or else we all would have been done away with a long time ago, don't you think? But forgiveness often emboldens His enemies, who continue to do evil things, while good people, such as yourself, are left wondering wtf. The day is coming, be patient.

Surely we did not create ourselves.

You give the generic definition of 'free will'. But only when we rid ourselves from selfish desires can it be said that our will is 'free'.

People think free will means they can choose whatever disgraceful thing they want. This is pointless.

Please tell me what is reasonable about the drunken orgy, the mad search for power and money, and the general emptiness that is life today? Besides it just being a lot of fun, that is.
 
 
+24 # Gevurah 2012-06-03 00:49
Why does "God" have to be a "him"? Well of course because "he" was invented by male dominated societies that merely projected their own virtues and vices on a figure they created.
 
 
+20 # pbbrodie 2012-06-03 06:58
John Lennon said it best in the lyrics of Imagine," ...and no religion too."
 
 
+25 # Observer 47 2012-06-03 10:53
Speak for yourself, Voice of Reason. Some of us don't think we need to worship "one God," or any god. Some of us believe that a person's worship, or lack thereof, is entirely up to him or her.
 
 
-12 # The Voice of Reason 2012-06-03 20:14
I thought everyone had a right to voice an opinion. You seem to voice yours against mine.

Perhaps then you could draft a plan for all to follow that would cure us of all our social ills and immoral excesses?

Or is humanity just a composite individual, non-interconnec ted cells with no real purpose?
 
 
-2 # solange 2012-06-03 11:01
We need a new religion that teaches that we belong to only one race, worship only one God, and God is known by the names of His Messengers.

Check out Baha'i.
 
 
+14 # hd70642 2012-06-02 21:27
For any philsophy there are bad components elitism idealism and folks that do not question what they are told . Especially when they talk in circles I do not have religion I have faith or I have personal realtion ship with god .Any person who actively aviods reality and spouts off mindless mantras is to be avioded as much as possible . These fundies are as dangerous and delusional and as druggies and cannot tolerate any one who is sober.
 
 
-5 # The Voice of Reason 2012-06-03 20:17
... and yet, how much do we do to help the druggies stop their drugging.

But think about this one: when you say you don't have religion, you may well be more religious than those who say they are religious. Or shall I say spiritual.
 
 
+45 # Richard1908 2012-06-02 21:49
The vicious hatred you Americans show to one another, your children, minority groups and other peoples is beyond the belief of the 96% of us who thankfully live outside your shores.

Unbelievably, this insanity is often fuelled by your American gods and their lunatic churches. Americans are living in their own crazy world. Your sick society encompasses a perverted church, an evil justice system, millions of your people who are sick and/or hungry, and a bankrupt economy.

Many of us who once had affection and respect for the United States of America now see you as a Fascist country. We see your self-proclaimed primary role as no more than the world's greatest and most maniacal killing machine. We hear your bellicose words and see your frightening war machines, and we fear you as the world's greatest threat to peace,.
 
 
+13 # terrison 2012-06-03 04:10
It is unfortunate...a nd rather sanctimonious to attack all U.S. citizens as "You Americans" who show vicious hatred toward one another. To use such language, and indeed your entire post itself displays a vicious hate OF Americans. Why would you expect the world's most culturally, religiously diverse country to not have...differences?

If what you were trying to get at was that our current brand of evengelical Christian fundamentalism is dangerous, mean-spirited, vicious, and myopic, then I will agree, and then some.

But to brand us all as hateful and fascist is silly.
 
 
+12 # Richard1908 2012-06-03 18:09
America is the world's most culturally, religiously diverse country? Excuse me? European and Asian nations preceded the United States of America by hundreds and even thousands of years, with a history many times more diverse. You should get out more.

America incarcerates more people than any other country with over 3,000 on death row; you have over 48 million people on food stamps so they can eat; throw people out of the homes that they have lived in for a life time; handcuff kids and cart them off to gaol: and keep black American people disadvantaged on just about every social and economic criterion.

As a nation, you have conducted covert and overt wars almost continuously for the last sixty years killing millions of people, often indiscriminatel y. Now your president has taken it upon himself that he can assassinate people at whim. No legal charge, no trial, just kill them because they are perceived a threat to the security of the USA.

And then the coup de grace - you're bankrupt!
 
 
-2 # The Voice of Reason 2012-06-03 20:34
The whole world is bankrupt: morally, spiritually, and economically. Every economic system, every fuel-based economy or weapons-based economy, is driven by an insane and inhuman greed, and is destructive of the human condition.

America has a great destiny, but it must rise out of the muck it is in now. 'The light that dawns in the East sheds its splendor in the West', or something like that.

The rest of the world is far more corrupt. Russia, China, are openly run by criminal organizations, while the Islamic republics use torture, rape and murder as legal punishments. Five to ten people a day are executed by hanging. All in the name of God. These are the most evil people in the world. And when God lets their time run out, you can believe there will be nowhere for them to run.

On that day will We cry to Hell, “Art thou full?” And it shall say, “Is there yet any more?”
 
 
+28 # conniejo 2012-06-03 05:43
Richard - Believe me; many of us are as dismayed as are you about what has happened/is happening to our country. We have not been paying attention to the subversive take-over of our government and economy by the capitalist oligarchy for the past 30 years, and we have a long road back. But more of us are waking up all the time and fighting for the country we once knew. It will be a long, slow process, but we are committed. The rest of my life will be devoted to reclaiming an America I can respect once again.
 
 
+23 # pbbrodie 2012-06-03 07:04
Your comments are correct for a very scary large number of Americans but please do not lump all of us into that mold. There are at least 40% of us who resist "the world's greatest and most maniacal killing machine."
 
 
-3 # KittatinyHawk 2012-06-03 15:09
Facts are wrong in statement so let them lump...that is how the hatred began...judging others
 
 
+26 # midtwnscott 2012-06-03 07:17
Please do NOT lump all Americans together. Many of us hate what is going here as much as you do but because of the political structure and militarization of civilian police forces, we are powerless to stop it. Yes, "religion" in America is devastatingly brutal and fanatical. It's hypocritical in the extreme, railing about sharia law while attempting to implement fundamentalist biblical law - to me there is no difference.

There is an unholy alliance in the U.S. between capitalism and the churches and it is frightening. And, if my memory doesn't fail me, and it usually doesn't, it was the union of big corporations backed by holy faith that are the foundations of fascism. America's single biggest export is war, death and destruction to the rest of the world to further war profiteering. You are correct and the rest of the world needs to be vigilant, my country is in the toddler stage of fascism.

I would flee in seconds to Scandinavia if not due to economic hardship. If I went to any embassy to request asylum, I would be laughed out the doors and visited soon after by the NSA, FBI or simply "disappear." This country is broken beyond repair and I want to leave but I don't know how.

So please, kindly to NOT group all Americans the way you did. Many, many of us believe the same as you do. We are a broken experiment in democracy. The world needs to be on its guard.
 
 
0 # KittatinyHawk 2012-06-03 15:11
As I said people who lump people are the ones who started all the crap. They judge us however, believe me the Churches in other parts of the world are not chaste...they are man's creation
 
 
-4 # KittatinyHawk 2012-06-03 15:08
If I remember correctly the whackos who first used religion to maniputlate people, start wars was not at all American Churches but from Europe, Middle East then Asia joined in but the ones with good faith never joined in but stayed aloof, still do.

No I am afraid the Insanity of Church came to America and started out killing those who we took the food, and land of, when they were not satisfied turned on their own...it was not yet The USA.

Comments are fine but have some background...No rth America was fine until White Men showed up....hopefully will be fine again when we anihilate ourselves and probably everyone else...because they will never be satisfied. they are blood thirsty Cannibals started in Middle east and spread their disease west...will continue spreading their disease until the planet is purged of us all
 
 
+28 # giraffee2012 2012-06-02 22:52
Abortion, gay rights, etc., and now this craziness - All these fanatical "religious" issues WERE designed to distract us from watching big $$ (called person hoods) buying our government. But now the distractions are getting to be an integral part of the Koch brothers (who want to be king of the world)

Where are the cops? Where is my democracy? If only the OWS had a leader! Without a leader, any action they take will end like the Egyptian Spring (where the Brotherhood is taking over) - and in USA it will be a group just like the Brotherhood!
 
 
+20 # Gevurah 2012-06-03 00:51
Brother (or sister) thou hast said it better than I could.

Sadly, what is left of our democracy is being auctioned at the ballot box to whomever can raise the most money.

Thank you, Supreme Court, for the Citizens United decision, in which the Roberts Court opened the flood gates to the Koch brothers and their ilk.
 
 
+19 # LeeBlack 2012-06-03 07:54
Agreed, the Supreme Court allowed this perversion of the Constitution. One shudders to think what the Supreme Court would do with one less Liberal and one more Conservative.
 
 
+11 # Gevurah 2012-06-03 19:21
Lee Black, that is one of the most pressing reasons why we have to re-elect Obama, though many of his supporters have found him sadly lacking.

The reasons is that he -- with luck -- will get to appoint one or more Justice.
Scalia and his poodle, Thomas, will have to be carried out of their; they'll never quit. Roberts and Alito are so comparatively young that one can only hope... well...enough said...
 
 
+2 # KittatinyHawk 2012-06-03 15:12
Get off the pulpit and do something about it
 
 
+11 # tswhiskers 2012-06-03 08:15
Religion may well be "the opiate of the masses" in these days of increasing authoritarianis m in government. Wonder how often the Kochs read their Bibles and practice the golden rule.
 
 
+11 # gzuckier 2012-06-03 12:02
I was thinking that these days, religion is more like the meth of the masses.
 
 
+8 # seeuingoa 2012-06-03 00:35
God should be sitting in The Hague,
besides Taylor, Milosevic, Mladic and
Karadzic.
Crimes against humanity and genocide
never expires.
 
 
+4 # 666 2012-06-03 12:27
and bush, cheney, rumsfield, & obama (& too many others from the last 11 years to mention)
 
 
+3 # The Voice of Reason 2012-06-03 20:35
and Khomeini
 
 
+10 # sapereaudeprime 2012-06-03 03:22
Only a deluded fool would worship a tribal god who moonlighted as a real estate agent and endorsed genocide as a method of acquiring land. The godlet of the Pentateuch was nothing more than a figment of tribal dementia. Not until the later prophets did a God worthy of the name appear.
 
 
+5 # gzuckier 2012-06-03 12:03
Quoting sapereaudeprime:
a tribal god who moonlighted as a real estate agent.

brilliant.
 
 
+1 # hjsteed 2012-06-03 03:36
Golden Rule?

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Golden_Rule
 
 
+12 # Bob P 2012-06-03 04:18
Seems like fundamentalists want to go all the way back to stone-age mentality and morality. How fundamental can they get?
 
 
+17 # paula schramm 2012-06-03 04:53
The Good News Club is Bad News.
 
 
+16 # Doll 2012-06-03 05:45
This is what happens when people believe that the bible is God. Not.

Believing that the bible is God is idolatry: Number one on the top ten sin list.

There are thousands of voices in the bible and in religion and they cannot all be right. This is selective reading and picking and choosing what you wish to believe. Do these folks also instruct these children to never wear garments made of two different fabrics? Why not? That is in the old testament.
 
 
-13 # The Voice of Reason 2012-06-03 20:39
Perhaps you could come up with a better book?

And if ye be in doubt as to that which We have sent down to Our Servant, then produce a Súrah like it, and summon your witnesses, beside God, if ye are men of truth.
 
 
+5 # jerryball 2012-06-04 13:52
A better book? That wouldn't take much of a stretch.
 
 
-1 # The Voice of Reason 2012-06-07 15:34
The world is waiting.

Does your book say, 'the earth is but one country and mankind its citizens', or 'so powerful is the light of unity that it can illuminate the whole earth' ?

That would be a good start, eh? If what we need is to be friends, then friends work together to help everyone out, then what do we need weapons or fuel-based economies for ?
 
 
+16 # futhark 2012-06-03 05:50
The Israelites practically invented genocide, or at least they are among the first to record a justification for it. The present policies of Zionist Israel to displace and contain the Palestinians stems directly from this tradition of removing the indigenous inhabitants by force of violence. The biblical record of genocide doubtless contributed to the near extermination of Native Americans in the United States.
 
 
-14 # The Voice of Reason 2012-06-03 20:37
What I don't understand is that Palestine has always been the enemy of God. So why do Muslims align themselves with Palestine?
 
 
+5 # futhark 2012-06-05 03:23
The Voice of Reason, please explain in a clear and reasonable voice the way in which "Palestine has always been the enemy of God". The Palestinians are just people like ourselves, trying to explore the phenomenon of human life in as rich and secure a way as possible. Their cultural context is Muslim, a religion that is committed to submission to God. I see no reasonable conflict between being a Muslim and empathizing with Palestinians, who are, in the main, also Muslims.
 
 
-1 # The Voice of Reason 2012-06-07 15:46
Palestine, or Philistine, was the area that opposed the ancient Israelite kingdom, and Israel is the name of God's chosen people in the Bible.

So ... Philistine was the enemy of God, since it opposed God's chosen people.

Then in 657 BC the Jewish king Manassah desecrated the Holy of Holies, was overthrown, and Israel was no longer a nation. In 70 AD, shortly after Jesus was crucified, the Romans banished the Jews ('the remnant of Jacob') from the Holy Land and branded the area 'Palestine' as an affront and a reminder to the Jews.

Now that Israel has returned, as promised in the Bible and even in the Qur'an, Palestine still aligns itself against Israel (again, God's chosen people). They offer no valid reason but seek only to destroy Israel. No compromise, no nothing, and are influenced by Shiites as well.

Why do they continue to go by the name Palestine ??
 
 
+9 # Elusive Pimpernel 2012-06-03 06:21
This article is ironic since it goes contrary to the current norms in public schools. It is clear that religion has been slowly eliminated from public schools and history has been very carefully programmed into the books to omit many historical facts.

So, to see religion find its way back into the schools, is an interesting development. The return of religion into the schools via CEF is not your run of the mill "love thy neighbor" type of religion, but "kill thy neighbor" religion.

So, kids in schools are denied the good morals of religion, but allowed the bad morals as a model to live by.

Students in public schools are clearly being brainwashed and the question one would ask is, to what end? Why are religious fundamentalists so intent on teaching kids that killing is ok?

Sounds satanical to me!
 
 
+4 # Anarchist 23 2012-06-03 15:26
Quoting Elusive Pimpernel:


Sounds satanical to me!


I daresay it is, literally, Satanic. You should look at the official Republican elephant Logo-you will see the five-pointed stars are upside down. that is usually taken as a Satanic symbol-the down pointing pentagram. There are three of them, right there on the Official Republican Elephant Logo. We seem to be in a novel co-written by Kafka, Orwell and JK Rowling. "Death Eaters' is a fitting description for these 'Good News' types (as well as Orwellian New-Speak!)
 
 
+4 # jerryball 2012-06-04 13:54
If so, somebody's gotta learn something useful. Rocket Science in Sunday School?
 
 
+13 # dick 2012-06-03 06:30
Given enough rope, the American Taliban will hang itself? Hopefully, extremists will discredit a psychotic epidemic disguised as spirituality. But a lot of harm will occur along the way. Overconfidence on the part of the crazies is leading to mistakes. Potential targets among media elites should begin to systematically expose & delegitimize this present day fascism, before it's too late. The rich were not safe in Nazi Germany.
 
 
+7 # Artemis 2012-06-03 06:32
Having just seen the following fascinating and disturbing film by Eyal Sivan a few days ago, this article sounds so familiar....the enemy is ever present! It is just another example of the many similarities between Israel and the USA.
"Izkor, Slaves of memory" 1990
The Hebrew imperative Izkor means remember. In April and May every years the offical memorial days of historical dramaturgy line up: Passover remembers the Exodus of the Jews from Egypt and freedom from the Pharaoh's yoke. It follows the memory of the Holocaust and heroism, then the fallen in the Israeli wars, and finally the celebrations of independence. The military and militarisation play a key role in 2000 years from slavery to freedom. Children in Israel are trained with ritualistic remembering and the preparation to serve with weapons from kindergarten through their entire schooling.
 
 
0 # KittatinyHawk 2012-06-03 15:18
As are many in the fine heirarchy of all Churches or how else to survive until today.
However, I do not care what Scalia says is okay, Religion cannot be force fed and if it is it is time for everyone esp those here on the pulpit to stop it.

Someone of a different Faith doesnot go to Fundie classes.... If the other Faiths are true Religions they better be made aware of these Satanists, for their children's sakes
 
 
+14 # hollyh 2012-06-03 06:50
I want to know what schools in what states are letting this group in. I'll bet TX is at the top of the list. I know for sure they aren't in Seattle where I work. I would scream from the highest mountain if I found out they were infiltrating Seattle Schools. Clarence Thomas should have been impeached long ago. He is as corrupt as they come
 
 
+7 # aitengri 2012-06-03 07:02
Aside from the intrinsic problem posed by the social perversions of the fundamentalists , we must look to the process whereby that twisted monkey of a supreme court justice, Clarence Thomas, was elevated to his position.
 
 
+5 # dick 2012-06-03 07:10
hd7642 You speak with High Definition clarity. They are ADDICTS. Thank you.
It's a shame that the psychotherapy community doesn't have the courage, or disregard for $$, to identify the addiction to delusions that passes for religion. "I have a personal relationship with "mental"" drugs"? "I have dozens of powerful imaginary friends, so you better look out"? "Oh, my God talks to me & tells me to teach the gullible that genocide is their duty." QUACK!
 
 
+5 # hd70642 2012-06-03 10:53
Well unfortunately religion has been a gravy train and derailing a gravy train would force those conmen to actually do heaven forbid to do an honest day work.!!!Christa ins unfortunately do not have a monoply on peddling hog wash you have Wayne Dyer go on pbs and peddle his mystical malarkey .You also had conman James Ray who was responcible for getting folks suffocated at a smoke lodge ceremony .Eventually abandoment of reality is dangerous not only to one own's health but anyone comes to close to the said conman.
 
 
+10 # Counselor1 2012-06-03 07:13
Religions are inherently political. Historically they are proto-nations, nascent nations that got pushed aside by secular states because they became too exploitative and inefficient at producing good. Kids need anti-indoctrina tion training, when told the "Good News" that they'll go to hell, to say "That's scary. You're trying to bully me." If that doesn't work enough they should next say, LOUDLY, "You're NOT NICE! I'm telling teacher and my Mom (Dad, whoever.) A year or so later,get them armed with a little booklet with the stupidest quotes exactly taken from the evangelicals bible like the ones about faithful being able to move mountains and handle poisonous snakes or drink any deadly things plus pictures of absurd mythical animals and places to show the other kids that not everything that can be imagined is true. Make sure they have more than one copy (the first will be taken away.)Add some durable little science – invented reward to counter the unhealthy candy, cookies etc.
 
 
+13 # wwway 2012-06-03 08:01
I really don't hold out much hope that the American People will reject this. Republicans have explicitly told Americans about their plans for a partisan Christian Taliban for years and Americans continue to embrace that path.
Yes, I agree with some of you that this path is exactly what Hitler planned and instituted. His only mistake was in trying to take over all of Europe too quickly. American conservatives are happy to stay within US borders.
 
 
+9 # gzuckier 2012-06-03 12:04
It lines up quite nicely with Reagan's little fantasy; God loves us so we can have anything we want and never have to pay for it.
 
 
+3 # Dave_s Not Here 2012-06-03 13:01
Gee, ya think? How about asking the Iranians and the Afghans?
 
 
+7 # Anarchist 23 2012-06-03 15:28
wwway: 'Within US Borders'? Have you looked at where our armed forces really are????? Check out Hondurus BTW-it is what this country might look like a few more years down the line.
 
 
+17 # humanmancalvin 2012-06-03 08:11
This is the same bizarre non-logic used as a reason from God to murder MD's in cold blood that perform legal abortions. Millions upon millions of human beings have been murdered in the name of God in one form or another. And I just noticed that I an athiest capitalize the word God. Difficult to spurn the rules of English just to make a point though. I still capitalize the word Republican even though it is surely not done of respect. These crazed zealots are firmly entrenched in all positions of power in this country (see: G.W. Bush). The blatant & outright hatred of ALL things Allah from a large contingent of Americans is an embarrassment & stain on the American name. I suppose it would not come as a surprise if someday these fanatics took up arms & set out to rid this country of people like me. Yes i am anti war but I am definitely not anti self defense.
 
 
+4 # Artemis 2012-06-03 08:20
Advised reading: "GOD IS NOT GREAT. How religion poisons everything" by Christopher Hitchens
 
 
+14 # Saberoff 2012-06-03 08:25
Gather the kids together; enter the police, the military, and these crazies.

Making children pledge their young lives to the state (what's allegiance, mommy?) and instilling in them fear for the wrath of god is child abuse, pure and simple.

Consider this: The people who wrote the so-called good book (now there's a stretch) didn't even know the Earth went around the Sun.
 
 
-4 # jwb110 2012-06-03 09:54
Doesn'Quoting Saberoff:
Gather the kids together; enter the police, the military, and these crazies.

Making children pledge their young lives to the state (what's allegiance, mommy?) and instilling in them fear for the wrath of god is child abuse, pure and simple.

Consider this: The people who wrote the so-called good book (now there's a stretch) didn't even know the Earth went around the Sun.

This sounds like the old Soviet doctrine of "the hand that rocks the cradle rules the world." Lenin said he only needed one generation to turn Russia to full Communist Rule. Stalin certainly had no problem killing off his enemies to the tune of about 20 million people. We need to stop calling these people Fascist and call them what they are Marxist/Leninis t Religious Communists where all who disagree are exterminated.
 
 
+6 # 666 2012-06-03 12:30
sorry, they are anything but marxists!
 
 
+16 # myungbluth 2012-06-03 08:28
Good News Clubs are bad news for America. They have no right to be in the public schools which I pay for with MY tax dollars! Thanks again, Clarence Thomas - you jerk! This is what a right-wing GOP takeover looks like. TAX THE CHURCHES!!!!
 
 
+16 # wwway 2012-06-03 08:29
Have any of you seen the documentary on Bonhoffer? He was a German preacher who witnessed the rise of Hitler and the cause for his final solution. The church was used to rationalize them vs. us thinking that resulted in genocide.
After having been raised a Baptist, I left the religious right in 1976 because I was listening to my preachers and realized then that where they were taking me wasn't moral or godly. The Christian church has killed God to take His place.
 
 
+7 # Saberoff 2012-06-03 09:38
The Dietrich Bonhoeffer story was also dramatized in a wonderful historical novel called "Saints and Villains" by Denise Giardina. Recommended to anyone who enjoys a good novel; a great read!

"In the charnel house that was Europe in the Second World War, there were few instances of shining moral courage, let alone secular sainthood. Dietrich Bonhoeffer, the German theologian and Nazi resister, was the exception. This emblematic figure risked his life - and finally lost it - through his participation in a failed plot to assassinate Hitler and topple his regime."
 
 
-3 # SFT 2012-06-03 09:18
I’m so sorry, but this whole article is ridiculous. Twisted and tweaked. I’m left wing, but this is too far out to ignore. Look at the facts:

The Old Testament is full of this stuff but to say the story of Saul was used for the destruction of Native Americans is false. Andrew Jackson called for “the systematic genocide of all Indian peoples” in a presidential mandate called the Indian Removal Act of 1832, subverting two Supreme Court losses by the U.S. Government as well as failed Congressional/I ndian Nation treaties. History.net has a great article on this and you can find the quote in the Library of Congress among others.
 
 
+3 # gzuckier 2012-06-03 12:11
It should be noted that Maimonides, one of the greatest historical rabbis, interpreted the text as meaning that an "Amalekite" should first be requested/press ured/instructed to cease his/her Amalekite ways, and only if they continued to actively fight the nation of Israel and all Godly things etc. were they to be reluctantly squished like a bug. Same as I've been trying with Republicans.
 
 
+6 # Maverick 2012-06-03 09:32
==========
PBBRODIE:
==========
And to think that very song is likely what got him killed. At church camp, his shooter (and all the other little brain-washed gullibles) used to sing, "Imagine, imagine if John Lennon was dead." Where are the parents in all of this? And WHY are they permitting their children to participate in a group with such an obvious psychopathic agenda? Haven't we witnessed enough damage from religion in our lifetimes?
==========
 
 
+16 # Mamazon 2012-06-03 10:00
And Gandhi said: "There is no God higher than Truth." and ""I like your Christ; I do not like your Christians. Your Christians are so unlike your Christ."
 
 
+2 # hd70642 2012-06-03 11:45
I have reccomended reading Holy Horors by James a Haught
God and his demons by Micheal Parenti
Top secret by Robert M Price
Sham by Steve Salerno
 
 
+9 # wrodwell 2012-06-03 13:07
So, the Christian "Good News Club" has, thanks to permission from the not so Supreme Court, gotten carte blanche to "convert" public school children to the Bible's version of Sharia Law. It's true purpose sounds more like subversion than conversion. It's absolutely shameful and is yet another example of religion poisoning the waters. If only the Founding Fathers had guaranteed us freedom FROM religion rather than freedom OF religion, we wouldn't be in this dangerous situation. It's now time to go after all religions the same way we went after the Ku Klux Klan - hit them in the pocketbook.
 
 
+2 # billeeboy 2012-06-03 13:32
All of this hate in the name of some figment of someone's imagination.... .sad
 
 
+5 # KittatinyHawk 2012-06-03 15:28
I believe if RSN is to publish this, the author should give a listing of the Schools this evil club is perverting the minds of our young. Child abuse comes in all forms and this is one, perhaps a good lawyer should see this angle and prosecute them.

As for all of you here, instead of using all the intellect up on these posts, why not go to your Public School and find out if your Tax Paying Dollars is allowing this and under what premise. If Fundamentalists want to teach their kids, they can do so after school on their property. I would also talk with other Churches as this undermines their teachings if their children and adults are to be annihilated.
Sorry but time to test the water on your own...So much energy expelled on your computers, what do you do in reality?
 
 
+5 # gzuckier 2012-06-03 16:25
Isn't it kind of ironic that the faction which is most likely to demand literal interpretation of the bible feels it's OK to use the command to destroy the nation of Amalek as a command to attack anybody who happens to be in the way at any given time, thousands of years after the nation of Amalek was wiped out.
 
 
+6 # Tree 2012-06-03 21:38
I've got it! Divert enough of the National Economy to build a Time Machine, go back to 16 year old Abraham, bring a broken Coke Bottle and give the boy a Vasectomy! Then, no more Abraham's Brats! No Jews Christians or Muslims... Bring Sara back to the future, put her on Oprah, and we can have a feminist future... Maybe she'll marry Sean Penn...
 
 
+7 # dovelane1 2012-06-03 22:29
How I deal with (so-called) christians, or any zealots. Economist Sylvia Cordwood was quoted in the Reader's Digest as saying "My opinion is something that is true for me personally. My conviction (however) is something that is true for everyone - in my opinion."

A fact is something one can prove to be true. An opinion is not a fact. The problems begin when a person believes something to be true that they can not prove. (For instance, god is male.) They will then respond to everything that follows as if their opinion was a fact.

All I do is tell them to PROVE IT. The Bible is just words on paper. It is not proof. No one can prove the existence, or non-existence of god. Therefore, all beliefs about all supreme beings are nothing more than opinions.

I have no problem with anyone having whatever opinion they want to have. I have a problem with anyone who tells me their opinions are facts when they cannot prove them, and I tell them so.

Many people believe in the idea that they have the courage of their convictions. That doesn't take much courage at all. Real courage comes about when a person can examine their beliefs, and allow others to do the same, and change them if necessary.

The problem with all zealots is that they cannot admit to the possibility that they might be wrong. Their self-image can't handle being wrong. That makes them afraid of change. Most zealots would rather die than change.
 
 
+6 # ericlevine 2012-06-04 18:12
The way to prevent such activities is to classify the bible as it is: an obscene and immoral in the extreme. Certainly not fit reading for any minor.

To Quote Paine in Age of Reason:

"Whenever we read the obscene stories, the voluptuous debaucheries, the cruel and torturous executions, the unrelenting vindictiveness, with which more than half the Bible is filled, it would be more consistent that we called it the word of a demon, than the word of God. It is a history of wickedness, that has served to corrupt and brutalize mankind; and, for my part, I sincerely detest it, as I detest everything that is cruel.

We scarcely meet with anything, a few phrases excepted, but what deserves either our abhorrence or our contempt, till we come to the miscellaneous parts of the Bible."
 
 
+2 # DaveM 2012-06-05 09:14
The Old Testament is positively stuffed with massacres great and small, usually based on some trivial ideological matter. Reading articles like this, I cannot help but recall the scene in "A Clockwork Orange", where Alex takes a deep interest in the Bible--just not for the reason everyone else believes.

Mark Twain dealt rather eloquently with the subject in his "Letters From The Earth". Those who know Twain only through Tom Sawyer owe it to themselves to take a look.

Those who have raised the subject of Satanism (for that matter, anyone who is concerned about the myths touted by fundamentalists ) ought to read Arthur Lyons' 1988 "Satan Wants You". It's a fast read, but in simple journalistic style utterly debunks virtually all of the "Satanic" stories that were flying around then and continue to be bandied about by any number of people including some political figures.

The FBI's 1992 report on "Satanic Ritual Abuse" (http://www.rickross.com/reference/satanism/satanism1.html) is also most informative. Concerned by the rumors that were running rampant at the time (and to some extent continue to), the FBI examined, I believe, 16,000 cases in which allegations of organized Satanic activity had been made. Not one proved to be substantiated in any way.
 
 
0 # fredboy 2012-06-05 13:40
They hunger for the death of us all.

That spell Sociopath, with a capital "S".
 
 
0 # JJS 2012-06-05 16:47
Anybody here seen my old friend Abraham, (Jesus,) Martin, John and Bobby?
Can you tell me where they've gone?
They freed a lot of people,
But it seems the good they die young.
I just looked 'round and they're gone.

Didn't you love the things that they stood for?
Didn't they try to find some good for you and me?
And we'll be free
Some day soon, and it's a-gonna be one day ..."
Dion
 

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