There is a cancer growing within religion in America. While many religious leaders have been screaming about a war on religion to justify their actions and tactics, the fact is that the vocal leadership of several church leaders and Christian organizations are driving people from the Church in droves.
The marriage of evangelical Christians and the conservative politics of the Republican Party is, and has been, the root of this cancer. The marriage, under god, has emboldened church leaders to not only ignore the line of separation between church and state – it has literally obliterated it. These churches are no longer houses of worship, they have become TheoPACs, or Religious Political Action Committees.
Who are these groups? They hold innocuously non-descript names – safe names. Names like Alliance Defending Freedom and the American Family Association. Nary a connection to religion, to god, to church; however, their agenda is not only frightening, it’s appalling!
Let’s take a close look at each of these theoPACs:
Mission: “Alliance Defending Freedom is a servant ministry building an alliance to keep the door open for the spread of the Gospel by transforming the legal system and advocating for religious liberty, the sanctity of life, and marriage and family.
Recognizing the need for a strong, coordinated legal defense against growing attacks on religious freedom, more than 30 prominent Christian leaders launched Alliance Defending Freedom in 1994. Over the past 18 years, this unique legal ministry has brought together thousands of Christian attorneys and like-minded organizations that work tirelessly to advocate for the right of people to freely live out their faith in America and around the world.”
Most recent achievement: Sponsoring and organizing “Pulpit Freedom Sunday” in early October, encouraging pastors from nearly 1,500 churches to discuss politics from the pulpit, and even to back a particular candidate. The purpose of the event is to challenge IRS regulations restricting religious leaders from endorsing candidates to their congregations. Participating pastors were asked to “preach a biblically based sermon regarding candidates and the election” and to videotape those sermons and send them to the IRS. Under the U.S. tax code, nonprofit organizations such as churches may express views on any issue, but they jeopardize their tax-exempt status if they speak for or against any political candidate. Federal law prohibits tax-exempt entities, such as houses of worship, from endorsing candidates for public office. Source
So the ADF is actively encouraging pastors to break the law – the constitution of the United States – violating the First Amendment, in order to gain political victory. After all, if their candidates win, they will be beholden to these churches theoPACs for their support. If the opposition wins and tries to right the wrong ADF is engaging in, they will be able to claim there is a “war on religion.” Win/win!
Mission: The mission of the American Family Association is to inform, equip, and activate individuals to strengthen the moral foundations of American culture, and give aid to the church here and abroad in its task of fulfilling the Great Commission. The American Family Association believes that God has communicated absolute truth to mankind, and that all people are subject to the authority of God’s Word at all times. Therefore AFA believes that a culture based on biblical truth best serves the well-being of our nation and our families, in accordance with the vision of our founding documents; and that personal transformation through the Gospel of Jesus Christ is the greatest agent of biblical change in any culture.
Most Recent Achievement: This one is special! AFA has decided to organize a parent/student boycott of “Mix it Up at Lunch Day” on 30 October. Mix it Up at Lunch is a nationally-sponsored event by the Southern Poverty Law Center as part of an anti-bullying campaign. AFA is opposed to anti-bullying because the theoPAC believes this is just another attempt to further the homosexual agenda. Source
“Anti-bullying legislation is exactly the same,” AFA’s spokesperson Bryan Fischer said. “It’s just another thinly veiled attempt to promote the homosexual agenda. No one is in favor of anyone getting bullied for any reason, but these anti-bullying policies become a mechanism for punishing Christian students who believe that homosexual behavior is not something that should be normalized.”
AFA calls the SPLC a “homosexual activist group” while the SPLC has characterized the AFA as a hate group.
Oh the irony! A theoPAC preaching a message of hatred for a group of people because we all know Jesus hates the homosexual agenda – he spoke against it all through the New Testament (oh wait, he never said a word about homosexuals – that was the message of the theoPAC founder Paul!)
AFA also notes, listing as one of their “successes” a boycott of Home Depot:
“Launched a boycott of The Home Depot after it refused to remain neutral in the culture war.”
As Chris Carter would say, C’mon Man! Are you serious?
AFA is the proud parent organization of 1,000,000 Moms and 1,000,000 Dads. You may recall the controversy earlier this year when 50 or so women, claiming to represent these million moms sought to pressure J.C. Penny’s into removing Ellen DeGeneres as their spokesperson – because of her sexual orientation.
The incredible opposition to homosexuals and the associated campaigns to deny basic human rights to a group of people is so amazingly out of touch with the compassion taught by their so-called spiritual leader Jesus Christ.
What isn’t happening en masse is a counter message from the Christian community denouncing this form of Nazism. Individuals will state that these hate messages do not represent their view of Christianity or their god; however, no vocal leadership has stepped up to date, within the theoPAC community or within the theoconservative GOP calling out these “leaders” for spewing hatred in the name of Jesus. You may think the label of “Nazism” is over the top, but when you look at the agenda of these theoPACs – which is specifically engaged in censorship and intolerance, what is a more apt description?
How is this different from the cries in the West citing the lack of will within Islam to denounce the cowardly attack by the Taliban on Malala Yousafzai? Where is the delta between the Taliban and the theoPACs? If you say it’s because they don’t shoot 14 year old girls for daring to have counterideas, think again. If they are brazenly willing to break a little constitutional law in their defiance, what is a little “justifiable homicide” to these extremists? Especially when done in the name of god? One does not have to look far to see the “justified” violence by these good people against doctors that perform abortions… Silence in the face of bigotry, intolerance, and hatred is not Christlike. Even an atheist can see that!