Freeeeeeedooooooooom!

The election season is always a fun time in fundamentalism as strange times make for even stranger bedfellows. In this case, Ted Cruz has put on his nightgown and headed for Bob Jones University to hold a Religious Liberty Rally.

As anybody who follows politics will know, the location picked for campaign events are never accidental. Unfortunately, the “religious freedom” fight that Bob Jones is known for is the fight for tax-exempt status back in 1983 over the university’s refusal to allow inter-racial dating. Apparently Cruz thinks that this issue of “no taxation without miscegenation” is still a winner with some part of the country.

As a connoisseur of both political and religious chicanery, it’s fascinating to me to see how the left and right have approached this issue in the same way by comparing marriage equality issues with racial equality ones.

While the Left trumpets a message of: “you don’t want to side with the fundamentalist racists!”, the Right is apparently yelling back “You don’t want to be like the people who made the fundamentalist racists pay taxes!”

It’s all going to be very, very interesting.

96 thoughts on “Freeeeeeedooooooooom!”

  1. This ‘first’ stuff–how did it start? And why does the topic of who is first to comment sometimes cause me to have to scroll way down for actual comments on the article? I am curious because this seems to be a thing only on SFL. Maybe some kind of fundie humor?

    1. It used to be a thing on somethingawful.com, but they were cracking down on it back when I was a goon (member). On most sites it annoys me, but it’s fun here, just part of the culture.

    2. I, too, thought it silly and annoying when I encountered all this “first” nonsense. However, once you unlock the achievement it’s like a drug and you keep coming back for more. Even if you never do get the butt cushion you’re promised.

      PS — Natalie, I don’t know what happened to you, but we are all missing our non-existent butt cushions. And you.

    3. I myself find it pretty annoying. I’d rather the comments be about the article itself, not “first!” “Second!” And then people respond to them, so it’s annoying to have to scroll further to see actual comments of value.

      1. As described, this is a light-hearted blog for those of us coming out of the Fundy tradition. Many people have been blogging here for years (I for only two or three), and they reserve the right to have some fun with their posts.

        I was only in a Fundamental church for about 10 years (including the five it took me to transition out). Most of the time it was too serious, always minding one’s Ps and Qs so as not to offend God or neighbor. What humor there was tended to be fake or forced (the pastor thinks it’s funny so I should laugh, too). I appreciate the fact that people, some of whom have been terribly wounded by their churches and leaders, can still see the funny side of life. Fundy church traditions can also be quite humorous-actually, ludicrous!

  2. Excellent political-religious commentary. I have also had fundy family, when the comparison between gay marriage and interracial marriage has come up, say something along the lines of “Yes, exactly, it’s the same fight.”
    Of course, they still think “us” fundys were right last time.

    1. That’s kind of wonderful in a perverse way, to think that there are still people who believe that the segregationist Fundies were right about the “dangers” of interracial marriage.

    2. That’s kind of wonderful in a perverse way, to think that there are still people who believe that the segregationist Fundies were right about the “dangers” of interracial marriage.

      1. … And I have no idea why this comment is here twice. I hope it bears repeating, but I didn’t intend to repeat it.

  3. Here’s hoping Ted Cruz’s dominionist rear end hasn’t the slightest chance at winning the presidency!

    1. But then again maybe Ted Cruz is the price America has to pay for Freedom of Speech. Be thankful you still have it. With The Cruiser in charge, you won’t.

    2. Hah, he’s about as dominionist as Darby was covenantal. He may claim to appreciate some folks like Gary North or Rushdoony as a ploy to all the homeschoolers, but power for himself is his end. Just like every. other. politician.

      1. Yes, I think everything Ted Cruz says represents a calculation on how to raise money from a certain audience, not a sincere belief. He probably doesn’t have any sincere beliefs except that whatever advances Ted Cruz is good.

        This is probably true of many politicians (not all of them, I think) to a certain extent, but it’s true of very few to the extent that it is true of Ted Cruz.

        1. Definitely true of most politicians. The higher you go, the more true it is. The only place you’ll find someone stating what they really think is in local politics – mainly city level.

        2. Mag, that’s pretty much why I restrict my voting to local dog catcher and fence inspector.

          For president I vote for Thomas Jefferson. Since he’s dead, he can’t cause us any problems.

      2. Does it matter if he believes in dominionism if he’s willing to embrace, espouse, and attempt to implement policies for them?

        1. I don’t know why, but the mantra used to describe old-school Microsoft-style business practices came to mind: “Embrace, extend, extinguish.”

        2. Good point, but I don’t think he is implementing their policies. I suspect one of us knows more about what dominionism is, and that may be you, but as I understand it, dominionism would use a more bible based law. Not as Cruz talks, endowing more government with more power to enforce its humanist laws.

      3. Agreed. Ted Cruz is all about personal power. And he will do anything to get it.

        I didn’t understand this when I was at BJU, but the University is all about personal power for the leadership and their sponsors. None for the little people, of course. None for students. None for those who dare to disagree. But power for themselves, certainly.

  4. Strange bedfellows indeed – back in the day a lot of our funsy church members were pro-Palin, until the pastor corrected their potentially pole-shifting ideas with a sermon reminding them that woman in charge = cursed by God

    1. Same thing happened at my church. Although I am not a fan of her politics, I was excited that so many people I knew were lining up behind a woman. Then the pastor set them straight and they were against her leadership and lack of submission. Same thing happened with Michele Bachman’s presidential run. The sermon was almost word-for-word identical.

      1. Interesting that the fundentalists should focus on passages in the Old Testament and in Paul’s epistles about women not being in authority over men yet ignore what the Bible, both Old and New Testament, and especially the teachings of Jesus (who’s that?) about looking after the weak and needy, feeding the widows and ophans , and treating “aliens” as you would treat their own people. (Of course they *sometimes* do those things but only to get people “saved” to become good Fundamentalist Christians)

        1. Exactly – I used to feel guilty about giving a homeless person money and not a gospel tract

      2. But doesn’t it take the shine off that they were lining up behind that woman? I mean, it was because she happened to not be a member of a hated class (democrats) not because of anything she stood for (nothing) or what she had in her head (nothing).

    2. I wouldn’t accept the broad version (“woman in charge”), but if you narrow it down to Palin, I find it quite plausible that “Sarah Palin in charge = cursed by God.”

  5. being from Northern Ireland I do seriously fear for the future of the U.S. because I know only too well how dangerous and distructive it can be when Religion and Politics get into bed together and stay there.

    1. I so totally agree. There was a candidate forum at a large Baptist church yesterday in Texas. All people were talking about was “taking back our country.” (Check NPR for the report which was on this morning’s news broadcast).

      They never seem to remember that the Founding Fathers were primarily deists, and that the reason there was a movement called the Great Awakening was because most of the frontier areas were unchurched. I want my faith linked with my public ethics (not always Republican) and behavior, not with my party affiliation.

      1. They seem to think the religious extremists used to run the country, which was never the case in the USA– and I hope it never will be.

        1. Religious extremists certainly ran the South, with segregation, miscegenation laws, discrimination towards Catholics and Jews, and the KKK running the world in the name of God. i never want to see this country return to those days.

        2. Those laws and practices certainly existed and were evil, but where I differ is that I don’t think the motivation behind them was religious.
          On the other hand, religious or pseudo-religious justifications were offered for those policies, so perhaps it is not so different from religious extremism now.
          I don’t think anybody back then was publicly advocating theocracy the way some do now, though.

      1. Carson is a Seventh-Day Adventist. It’s going to be interesting to see how the Christian Right likes them apples.

        Although most of them were willing (OK, grudgingly willing) to support Mormon Mitt and Papist Paul in 2012.

        1. The Seventh Day part wouldn’t offend, while a lot of evangelicals are “Adventists” in the sense that they expect the Second Coming to happen soon. Vegetarianism would be the most worrisome aspect–I mean, what kind of commies don’t eat steak?

          Speaking of which, didn’t Bob Jones recently host Bernie Sanders?

        2. Liberty, not Bob Jones hosted Bernie Sanders. Liberty has hosted a number of left wingers over the years. Don’t expect to see anyone with a sense of morality to show up at Bob Jones.

        3. If only the Christian right supported Ron Paul in 2012. I don’t think he’s a papist though. That’s Jeb. Unless Lutheran is papist. I think he’s Lutheran. At any rate, when Paul got booed by the Values Voters for calling Jesus the Prince of Peace, they showed their god to be Mars, not Jehovah.

        4. Remember, SC went all out for adulterous, divorce-happy, catholic Gingrich. Again, why do so many Christians leave their bible outside the voting booth.

        5. Mr Crosby, it’s for convenience. Gingrich would promote their political agenda. Reagan was divorced but patriotic as all heck.

          I’m firmly convinced that people vote with their wallets and not with their brains.

        6. They may leave the Bible behind when they vote, but I wish I could be sure they always leave their Politics behind when they pick up the Bible to read it.
          (I’ve seen the same thing happen in Northern Ireland ) 🙁

        7. Jeb is Catholic. Converted when he married but I have read it became sincere and he is devout. More power to him on that. It’s many of his policies I object to, not his piety. I assume he was raised in the Episcopal Church as that is his father’s religion.

      2. Sometimes, hearing what Dr. Carson says, I suppose that the best thing he can do to ensure that he loses the election is simply to keep talking. Then again, The Donald says far worse scheiße than Carson, and he’s still in the lead. I don’t know, I’ve already given up hope for anyone who’s not a total religious reich nutcase (or at least a pretender) to come out of the (R) primary.

        1. It seems that, at least with Republican primary voters, the nuttier your rhetoric, the better your chances.
          Or perhaps I should say the more hateful your rhetoric, the better your chances.

        2. By most accounts, Ben Carson was quite a good neurosurgeon. It just goes to show that a person can be really smart in one area (medicine) and really stupid in others (current events, sociology, science outside of medicine).

        3. Could he operate on the head of Ted Cruz?Oh, I forgot, there is a big difference between a neurosurgeon and a carpenter

        4. I wonder if the Cruiser ever gets headaches, the way his skull keeps grinding against his pelvic bones?

  6. I was in a fundy church for 12 years and always during the Presidential election season the pastor called for fervent prayer (not so much during the other elections for some reason). The members would wring their hands and they would stay late Wed nights to pray (I say “they” because I was in the nursery every Wed). And the result? The prayers accomplished…what? Sometimes the Dems are in charge, sometimes the Reps – seems all a matter of chance, not prayer

    1. I’d like to see Sanders and Cruz run against each other as the respective nominees of their parties. It won’t happen, but a boy can dream.

        1. That did happen. I was there (full disclosure: I voted for Jackson). But neither got the nomination.

  7. I am grateful to BJU for supporting religious liberty. You’d be surprised how often we Rastas are denied the right to smoke our sacrament.

  8. I’m not surprised by BJU…if one more person tells me what an awesome person Berg is, I might throw up. They are so far gone. However, that anyone would think it’s a good idea to associate with BJU is beyond me. You would think even if someone political shared ideas they would have an ounce of common sense to not be bedfellows with those with such profoundly racist roots and recent wrong doing and lack of repentance with non-reporting of rape, molestations, etc., which has been in national news multiple times. Bizarre.

  9. I know this isn’t precisely germane to this topic, but I wish all fundies or anyone associated with the religious right would read the last sentence of Article VI of the Constitution:

    The Senators and Representatives before mentioned, and the members of the several state legislatures, and all executive and judicial officers, both of the United States and of the several states, shall be bound by oath or affirmation, to support this Constitution; but no religious test shall ever be required as a qualification to any office or public trust under the United States.

  10. “No taxation without miscegenation!”

    How ironic that Ted Cruz is towing that line at BJU, given that he is of mixed race himself (Cuban-White). If kowtowing to these thumpers doesn’t make him a self-hating Latino, it’s certainly made him soulless

    1. Teds is officially Cuban/Canadian, but I suspect a DNA test might show mixed Ferengi and Troll heritage.

  11. I would like to take a minute and thank the fundies, the crazy dominionist politicians, the pastors who preached hateful sermons toward the LGBT, and the leaders in the “family values” movement who lived a double life. Their paranoia, hatred, bigotry, and sense of privilege sped up marriage equality and gay rights in this country. Please, just keep talking.

        1. Ah, yes, interorectogestion. One of my friends thought that I ought to watch a clip from that episode before dinner. They’re luck that they’re still a friend!

    1. For the sake of the poor LGBT kids growing up in conservative evangelicalism, I wish that CEs would quit it with the slander toward LGBT people – i.e. all the lies about choosing your orientation, being made gay by bad parenting, LGBT people being child molesters, and so on and so forth. But I can’t deny that their insanity has contributed to overall social progress. And with that said, Pat Robertson needs to stay on TV as long as possible.

        1. I used CE to mean Conservative Evangelical. It could also mean Church [of] England, I suppose, or many other things as well. I apologize for the confusion.

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